The Federal Open Markets Committee raised the Fed Funds rate target to 0.25%-0.5%, and the Discount Rate to 1.0%. This is the first interest rate increase in over eight years.
The Fed’s forecast for inflation and economic growth was released today. Subpar growth remains for as far as can be foreseen.
November housing starts rose 10.5% to a 1.173 million annual rate, while building permits rose 11.0% to a 1.289 million annual rate.
Industrial production fell -0.6% in November, while capacity utilization in the nation’s factories fell -0.5% to 77.0%.
The PMI Manufacturing Index Flash fell -0.9 points to 51.3 in November.
The MBA reports that mortgage applications fell -1.1% last week, with purchases down -3.0% and refis up 1.0%.
Consumer prices were unchanged overall in November, and rose 0.2% ex-food and -energy. On a year-over-year basis, the CPI is up 0.5%, and up 2.0% ex-food and -energy.
The Empire State Manufacturing Index rose more than 5 points, but remained negative at -4.59% for December.
Redbook reports that last week’s retail sales fell to 1.5% on a year-ago basis, from the previous week’s 1.9%.
The Housing Market Index fell -1 point in December, to 61.
Foreign demand for U.S. long-term securities fell by $-16.6 billion, primarily from the net $-50.2 billion sold by foreign investors.
No, I’m not talking about climate change this time. In fact, it has to do with a “sham” of the same sort of proportion. And, surprisingly, TIME’s person of the year said it:
The speech that followed, however, may have surprised supporters of her policies: “Multiculturalism leads to parallel societies and therefore remains a ‘life lie,’ ” or a sham, she said, before adding that Germany may be reaching its limits in terms of accepting more refugees. “The challenge is immense,” she said. “We want and we will reduce the number of refugees noticeably.”
Although those remarks may seem uncharacteristic of Merkel, she probably would insist that she was not contradicting herself. In fact, she was only repeating a sentiment she first voiced several years ago when she said multiculturalism in Germany had “utterly failed.”
Well, Germany isn’t the only place where multiculturalism has failed. In fact, I’d love to see someone point to a success. When, as she notes, the “ism” sets up parallel societies, it is bound to fail. A “foreign” or non-native culture that is allowed to coexist with the native culture has little reason or impetus to become a part of the society the native culture has created. Or, as we’ve talked about, “assimilate”. Instead the foreign is allowed to establish itself and its cultural principles in that parallel society. If allowed, it could obviously, at some point, supplant the native culture, especially if the native culture is shamed into being “tolerant” and allowing such a culture a foothold – especially if that culture is diametrically opposed to the native culture.
France and Germany have allowed that condition to develop and exist for years. And, as Ms. Merkel points out, it’s been an utter failure.
The US, on the other hand, hasn’t. It has always considered itself a “melting pot”, not a “salad bowl”. In one the ingredients melt and all become one. In the other, the ingredients all stay separate but “combine” to create a pleasing dish. Unfortunately, the “salad bowls” of France and Germany have instead created a balkanized state with a parasitic culture that has not only not assimilated, but refuses to assimilate. The results have been the parallel societies, each with different beliefs (of which only one shares the beliefs and principles of the native country) which are at violent odds with each other.
Or said another way, the results are not at all the result the “multiculturalists” claimed they would be.
But then what’s new?
In the meantime, after “utterly failing” in Europe (which now reaps the consequences of multiculturalism) with the “life lie”, they’re busy here trying to shame Americans into believing that such balkanization as that which is failed in German and France is, in fact, a good thing and that “coexistence” with separate, non-assimilated cultures, some of which are obviously more violent and reject our cultural principles, is a “good thing.”
And the ideological wars continue. In fact, did you know that using the term “melting pot” as I’ve done above is considered to be a “racial microaggression” now?
More of the word salad the left enjoys using to obfuscate the truth. The truth is that some cultures are inferior to others and citizens of nations have every right to expect those who wish to call their country home also embraces the native culture that has made the nation and people what they are today.
It’s not really that much to expect, is it? Especially when the alternative is a “sham”.
Yeah, me neither. Yet, we have a group of people out there who are more than willing to take the chance of “inviting” known killers who hate us into the country.
As usual, the media and some pundits have turned a very gray area into stark black and white arguments. You’re apparently for allowing open immigration to anyone or you’re a racist and a bigot if you opt to be selective.
What I’m talking about is the majority of the nation which is reasonably concerned that those who would kill us are seeking entry into the country without being screened and, if necessary, rejected. This is characterized as “unAmerican”. So, then, was Ellis Island where we rejected would be immigrants if they were sick or had criminal backgrounds, etc.
Let’s bear in mind that permitting immigration is a discretionary national act. There is no right to immigrate to the United States, and the United States has no obligation to accept immigrants from any country, including Muslim-majority countries. We could lawfully cut off all immigration, period, if we wanted to. Plus, it has always been a basic tenet of legal immigration to promote fidelity to the Constitution and assimilation into American society — principles to which classical sharia is antithetical. . . .
All important points, but the final point is most likely the most important. McCarthy again:
Our constitutional principle of religious liberty is derived from the Western concept that the spiritual realm should be separate from civic and political life. The concept flows from the New Testament injunction to render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and unto God what is God’s.
Crucially, the interpretation of Islam that is mainstream in most Muslim-majority countries does not accept a division between mosque and state. . . .
The lack of separation between spiritual and civic life is not the only problem with Islam. Sharia is counter-constitutional in its most basic elements — beginning with the elementary belief that people do not have a right to govern themselves freely. Islam, instead, requires adherence to sharia and rejection of all law that contradicts it. So we start with fundamental incompatibility, before we ever get to other aspects of sharia: its systematic discrimination against non-Muslims and women; its denial of religious liberty, free speech, economic freedom, privacy rights, due process, and protection from cruel and unusual punishments; and its endorsement of violent jihad in furtherance of protecting and expanding the territory it governs.
And that’s where we must draw the line. If an immigrant wants to become an American, recognize the separation of church and state and embrace the constitutional principles which govern this country, I say “welcome”. If not, I say, “don’t let the doorknob hit you in the ass as you leave”.
Of course, the left’s legacy of “multiculturalism” says we must respect different cultures and learn to live with them. I say, no we don’t. Why? Because some cultures are destructive and some cultures are inferiors. I know, not politically correct, but certainly reality based (something the left once tried to convince us was a description of their ideological grounding).
You would no more invite a killer that hated you and wanted to take over your house into your home than any other sane person. There’s no reason why we shouldn’t apply the same principle to this country (and for those of you who don’t read carefully, that means we don’t keep out all Muslims, only those (of any religion or ethnic group) who refuse to recognize our Constitutional principles and won’t assimilate).
We don’t “owe” them anything.
It’s Donald Trump’s World. We’re just living in it. On the Podcast Page.
If you develop software and have any interest in what I do in real life, you can go to Microsoft’s Channel 9 and see a video interview of me that was released this week. I babble on about user experience and how developers should think about it, and show a few minutes of a Windows 10 app my team has been working on for, of all things, cattle management.
The page with the video is at Channel 9
It’s also embedded below for convenience. The Windows 10 app demo starts about 14:20, if you are particularly interested in that.
Also, if you wonder why I never seem to have a proper haircut, it’s a ploy. This picture I found on Cracked.com this week explains it.
I think my hair in the video is somewhere between Dr. Strangelove and Gene Wilder as Dr. Frankenstein.
November import prices fell -0.4%, and export prices fell -0.6%. On a year-over-year basis, prices are down -9.4% for imports and -6.3% for exports.
The Census Bureau quarterly services survey shows information revenue rose 0.7% in the 3rd Quarter, and is up 3.7%, year-over-year.
Rising Medicare expenses helped sent the government’s budget to a $-64.6 billion deficit in November. The fiscal year deficit to date is now up 12.6% over the same period last year.
Initial weekly jobless claims rose 13,000 to 282,000. The 4-week average rose 1,500 to 270,750. Continuing claims rose 82,000 to 2.243 million.
The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index rose 0.5 points to 40.1 in the latest week.
The Fed’s balance sheet rose $2.4 billion last week, with total assets of $4.480 trillion. Reserve bank credit rose $1.5 billion. Clearly, the Fed has stopped the Quantitative easing, and its balance sheet has topped off. We continue to monitor this report for indications of monetary tightening through selling the Fed’s current top-heavy portfolio of securities.
The Fed reports that M2 money supply fell by $-38.8 billion in the latest week.
If you’d like a good leather jacket, time is running out to sign up for one.