The Econ­omy, How Bad Is It?

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The Econ­omy, How Bad Is It?
The econ­omy is so bad:
That I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.
I ordered a burger at McDon­alds and the kid behind the counter asked, “Can you afford fries with that?”
That CEO’s are now play­ing minia­ture golf.
If the bank returns your check marked “Insuf­fi­cient Funds,” you call them and ask if they meant you or them.
Hot Wheels and Match­box stocks are trad­ing higher than GM.
McDon­alds is sell­ing the 1/4 ouncer.
Par­ents in Bev­erly Hills have fired their nan­nies and learnt their children’s names.
T truck­load of Amer­i­cans was caught sneak­ing into Mex­ico.
Dick Cheney took his stock­bro­ker hunt­ing.
The Mafia is lay­ing off judges.
Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Con­gress­men.
And finally
Con­gress says they are look­ing into this Bernard Mad­off scan­dal.
Oh, great!!  The guy who made $50 Bil­lion dis­ap­pear is being inves­ti­gated by the peo­ple who made $1.5 Tril­lion dis­ap­pear!

In the spirit of “we all need a laugh”, this list of jokes is doing the rounds in the USA:

The econ­omy is so bad that:

  • I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.
  • I ordered a burger at McDon­alds and the kid behind the counter asked, “Can you afford fries with that?”
  • CEO’s are now play­ing minia­ture golf.
  • If the bank returns your check marked “Insuf­fi­cient Funds,” you call them and ask if they meant you or them.
  • Hot Wheels and Match­box stocks are trad­ing higher than GM.
  • McDon­alds is sell­ing the 1/4 ouncer.
  • Par­ents in Bev­erly Hills have fired their nan­nies and learnt their children’s names.
  • A truck­load of Amer­i­cans was caught sneak­ing into Mex­ico.
  • Dick Cheney took his stock­bro­ker hunt­ing.
  • The Mafia is lay­ing off judges.
  • Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Con­gress­men.

And finally one I don’t agree with, but in the inter­ests of com­plete­ness:

  • Con­gress says they are look­ing into this Bernard Mad­off scan­dal.
    • Oh, great!!  The guy who made $50 Bil­lion dis­ap­pear is being inves­ti­gated by the peo­ple who made $1.5 Tril­lion dis­ap­pear!

Boom boom”, as they used to say in Vaude­ville.

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  • mul­rax

    AK,

    You make some good points. I under­stand where you are com­ing from because I’ve spent a sig­nif­i­cant part of my pro­fes­sional career work­ing on financial/trading/portfolio sys­tems too. It pays to learn enough about the sec­tor so that you can speak the same lan­guage as the end users of your sys­tems and grasp the con­cepts involved. But com­ing from a dif­fer­ent back­ground to many peo­ple in the finance indus­try some­times helps you notice things that they gloss over, and that could be why you can see the ben­e­fits of Steves mod­els where many peo­ple in the indus­try can not. 

    How the flaws creep into ecco­nomic mod­els is less to do with how exhaus­tively they are tested (on paper — because it’s not really pos­si­ble to manip­u­late the actual ecco­nomic sys­tem) but rather the num­ber of assump­tions that they make in order to make them ‘work’. What really sep­a­rates Steve from other eccono­mists is that he chal­lenges long-held assump­tions to see if they are rock-solid fact (gen­er­ally show­ing that they are not) and through that an ecco­nomic model that more accu­rately reflects the under­ly­ing ecconomy should result.

    Just as with sys­tem devel­op­ment, it doesn’t mat­ter how reli­ably a model is imple­mented if the orig­i­nal design and the premises that it’s based on are inad­e­quate.

    It will prob­a­bly be quite a while before Steve has a model that he con­sid­ers to be ‘com­plete’, but in the mean time — as you say — we can all ben­e­fit by fol­low­ing the evo­lu­tion of the model and con­tem­plat­ing the issues that are raised along the way.

    Mul­rax

  • mul­rax

    An arti­cle that may be of inter­est relat­ing to some small steps towards reduc­ing stimulus/subsidy (by state and ter­ri­tory govts).

    http://au.news.yahoo.com/a/-/latest/6412821/first-home-buyers-to-face-price-caps/

    The “price caps” they are talk­ing about are still rather gen­er­ous in the sense that they are set at around $750k so if the state govts FHB assis­tance was affect­ing house prices at all this move is hardly going to reverse the over­in­flated house prices on it’s own. 

    Mul­rax

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