William H. Gross | April 2011
March 29, 2011
By John Tamny
Parkinson’s Law. While analyzing British naval history, author and scholar C. Northcote Parkinson revealed as false the widely held view embraced by politicians and taxpayers that the need for more civil servants will reveal itself through a growing volume of work completed. The truth is something quite different.
As Parkinson observed, “the number of the officials and the quantity of the work are not related to each other at all.” In his case, Parkinson witnessed the non-relationship up close through studies of the Royal Navy’s bureaucracy.
While the Royal Navy could in 1914 claim 146,000 officers and men served by 3,249 dockyard officials and clerks, plus 57,000 dockyard workmen, by 1928 there were only 100,000 officers and men, yet the number of dockyard officials and clerks had risen to 4,558. This, despite the fact that the number of British warships had declined from 62 to 20.
Parkinson went on to point that over the same period, the number of Admiralty officials had risen from 2,000 to 3,569. The British Navy had shrunk by 1/3rd in terms of men, and 2/3rds in terms of ships, thus forcing Parkinson to conclude that the growth in the number of workers for the Royal Navy “was unrelated to any possible increase in their work.”
March 28, 2011 QE2 – Apres Moi, le Deluge
John P. Hussman, Ph.D.
Apr 4, 2011, Vol. 16, No. 28 • By FRED BARNES
Energy Source Death Rate (deaths per TWh) Coal – world average 161 (26% of world energy, 50% of electricity) Coal – China 278 Coal – USA 15 Oil 36 (36% of world energy) Natural Gas 4 (21% of world energy) Biofuel/Biomass 12 Peat 12 Solar (rooftop) 0.44 (less than 0.1% of world energy) Wind 0.15 (less than 1% of world energy) Hydro 0.10 (europe death rate, 2.2% of world energy) Hydro - world including Banqiao) 1.4 (about 2500 TWh/yr and 171,000 Banqiao dead) Nuclear 0.04 (5.9% of world energy)
Veronique de Rugy | Mar 21, 2011
Fed officials, he adds, “really seem to think that inflation is something they can deal with very easily and very quickly. I don’t believe they’re right.” He notes that, in the late 1970s, inflation was only in the high single digits yet curing it required interest rates of 20% and a collapse of the bond market.
Mr. Singer further warns that investors shouldn’t misinterpret apparently bullish signals from a rising market. “Of course printing money is going to support asset prices,” but “it’s very dangerous” and is not a substitute for trade, tax and regulatory reforms that make America an attractive place for job creation.
“What would a loss of confidence in the dollar actually look like? Gold going absolutely nuts,” adds Mr. Singer, who is also a major donor to conservative intellectual causes and think tanks such as the Manhattan Institute. He observes that prices for many commodities are already near all-time highs, even with “kind of a soft recovery” in the U.S. and Europe, and robust growth in Asia. “Imagine if hoarding, speculation, investment positions in [hard assets] accumulate to cause commodities and gold to go rocketing up. Wages, prices will follow,” he says.
9:15 AM, Mar 15, 2011 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
How much is entitlement spending the real source of our budgetary woes? Here’s a stat for you: In President Obama’s proposed 2012 budget, the White House Office of Management and Budget estimates (in Table S-4) that mandatory spending this year (2011) will be $2.194 trillion, while total federal receipts will be $2.174 trillion.
That’s right: Even if we were to spend every dime of federal revenue on mandatory programs (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and the like), we would still have a $20 billion deficit. When you add in interest payments on the debt ($207 billion), we would have a $227 billion deficit. That’s even if we didn’t spend anything at all on discretionary programs, the category of spending that includes homeland security, interstate highways, national parks, and, of course, national defense.