Monday, December 26, 2005

Congress Seeks to Cut Vet Benefits Yet Again and Shoppers Slip Out of Stores

By Elaine Meinel Supkis

More gloom and doom: Congress is worried about all the money flowing to victims of our stupid imperialist wars and so they want to make it harder for those welfare queens: sick or injured vets. And who votes for these stupid Congress critters? Also, the American consumer is fading fast thanks to inflation and flight of good jobs to distant shores. Fun.

From the Washington Post:
The spiraling cost of post-traumatic stress disorder among war veterans has triggered a politically charged debate and ignited fears that the government is trying to limit expensive benefits for emotionally scarred troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the past five years, the number of veterans receiving compensation for the disorder commonly called PTSD has grown nearly seven times as fast as the number receiving benefits for disabilities in general, according to a report this year by the inspector general of the Department of Veterans Affairs. A total of 215,871 veterans received PTSD benefit payments last year at a cost of $4.3 billion, up from $1.7 billion in 1999 -- a jump of more than 150 percent.
Maybe Babs Bush can go to Walter Reed and say, "Let them eat depleted uranium." Geeze. They cut taxes for the very rich how long ago? Last month?

This really steams me since they pretended four years ago that we could cut taxes and go to war, an insane proposition. Now we have to tighten our belts but only if we are patriotic unlike the owners of those off-shore corportions and of course, Halliburton.

From the New York Times;
Many retailers hoping for a big finish to the holiday season instead had lighter-than-expected crowds over the long Christmas weekend, according to anecdotal reports, leaving stores to rely heavily on the next few days to pump up December sales.

Explanations for the lackluster finish varied: an unusually warm winter hurt cold-weather clothing sales, greater gift card use delayed purchases and higher energy costs discouraged splurges.
When oh when will businesspeople finally learn, if you spew or demand propaganda instead of intelligent analysis of reality, reality will bit like a Great White Shark. The stockmarket shot up on fake news. This cynical ploy set in motion by the big trading houses on Wall Street and Bloomberg, the mayor/owner of economic newspapers, will now leave the average investor,namely Mr. and Mrs. Middle Class Chump, out on the limb yet again. Think Bloomberg believes the garbage he sponsors?


From the Times Union, Albany:
Rising natural gas prices are not hurting just consumers and businesses, but also the power plant companies that make electricity by burning natural gas.
Natural gas futures are trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at roughly $12 per 1,000 cubic feet, nearly double what the price was a year ago.

That is costing electric power plants in New York, many of which use natural gas as fuel, said Gavin Donohue, chief executive of the Independent Power Producers of New York Inc.

"It certainly is a big dramatic impact, as it is for all businesses and consumers alike," Donohue said. "There obviously is no end in sight. It's a big impact, and it obviously impacts everybody's bills."
For ever-loving Marie Antoinette, in the name of all the devils in the Yale Crypt of the Skull and Bones, it was ridiculously obvious to me since last summer that this was going to happen. Dozens of cartoons expressed this obvious truth: we are in serious trouble on every possible level thanks to rising energy costs coupled with inflation and rising interest rates!

This isn't rocket science, this is simply, I don't seen to have Economic Pundit Alzheimer's disease which seems to be required of every paid economic pundit in America. Friedman gets his stupid books and columns sold over every counter in America and they are worthless except to burn in the fireplace when the money runs out for paying the fuel bills.

Note that I run this service for free and have few readers. This doesn't matter to me for this is just another chapter in the future saga, a big fat book called, "The Fall of the American Empire/ World War III". And I won't make any money on that one, either.

Probably will have to write it on clay tablets, or maybe paint it on cave walls. Gads.
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