Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

Christmas in Iraq: Not so Merry for Christians

by Bruce WebbIraq Christians face ‘bleak future’ Christians in Iraq face a “bleak future,” said Kassab, executive director of the Chaldean Federation of America, a nonprofit group that helps Iraqi Christians. “We are heading for a demise,” he said. “It’s getting to the point where it might be an ethnic cleansing in the future.” A […]

2008 Financial Report of the United States

by Bruce Webb 2008 Financial Report of the United States Government (Report) provides the President, Congress, and the American people a comprehensive view of the Federal Government’s finances, i.e., its financial position and condition, its revenues and costs, assets and liabilities, and other obligations and commitments. The Report also discusses important financial issues and significant […]

Nationality Act of 1940: Nipping wingnut memes in the bud

by Bruce Webb Right Wingnuttia is ablaze. Time for some cold water. There are a couple of lawsuits floating around concerning Obama’s alleged non-citizenship. One is Berg v. Obama which was dismissed due to lack of standing on October 24. Berg has appealed that to the Supreme Court which has not to my knowledge taken […]

Is it true that foreigners finance American debt?

This is the question raised by Brenda Rosser in a couple of posts at Econospeak Is it true? To which Barkley Rosser (no relation to Brenda and in fact living on the opposite side of the world-it really is an odd and small blogosphere sometimes) replies in part as follows: Brenda,The Chinese central bank has […]

Social Security Monthly Balances: Oct update

Projecting the long-term health of Social Security is of necessity subject to uncertainty, the known unknowns if you will. But you can if you like sample the short term health by consulting Treasury’s Monthly Trust Fund Reports which gives balances to the penny with a one month lag, and compare them to the various projections […]

Now for something completely different

Kevin Drum incidentally mentioned the Nov 1940 collapse of ‘Galloping Gertie’, otherwise known as the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, in a post about a new technique about generating electricity from river or ocean currents. Which led me to pull up some footage and figure out how to embed it. (No it is not hard. But Old […]

Social Security: Inter and Intra-Temporal Contingency

What fresh hell is THIS?When I first started studying Social Security in detail sometime late in 1997 I made what to me was kind of an amazing discovery. Social Security ‘crisis’ then and now tended to be perceived and discussed within the deterministic frame of Boomer Retirement, kind of a ‘demography makes destiny’ thing. Every […]

Why Conservatives Hate Social Security

By Bruce Webb PGL raises and answers this question over at Econospeak Health Care Debate: So This is Why Conservatives Hate Social Security. Or rather he allows Conservatives in the person of Michael Cannon at Cato admit the fundamental truth: successful government social programs fatally undercut future political success for the Right. Cannon: Blocking Obama’s […]