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Your butthole is pretty, says President Trump.

Dow Jones later reported U.S. negotiators are offering to cancel new China tariffs and reduce existing levies on Chinese goods by up to 50% on $360 billion worth of imports. However, the report also said the original tariffs would be reimposed if China fails to carry out its end of the deal.

Sure they will.

By the way, I'd like this sort of deal when it comes to all manner of other things.

Remember that the reason the tariffs were imposed in the first place was due to rampant cheating by the Chinese over decades.

If you're going to lift them then (1) you have to get compensation for said cheating and it has to be paid in full and (2) you have to have a showing of good faith over the same sort of time frame that the original cheating was.

Neither, of course, is being done here.

This is all about cranking the stock market higher -- and nothing else.  Meanwhile you're still getting it up the pooper with medical and insurance costs, exactly zero of which is being addressed, and despite the fact that there is no evidence that the currently-imposed tariffs are having any negative impact on the US job market and economy at all -- to the contrary there is a four month pattern that coincides exactly with the previous tariffs on a population-adjusted basis that is very positive for US workers, all of which will disappear instantly if the tariffs are dropped.

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2019-12-04 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Federal Government , 85 references
[Comments enabled]  

Fines will do nothing.

A Plano excavation company is being investigated by federal authorities for continuing to employ undocumented immigrants even after previously being caught and fined for it, according to federal court documents.

A 2018 inspection of Vilhauer Enterprises found that 71 of the 109 employees whom the company said it had fired due to suspect documentation were still receiving checks, according to Homeland Security Investigations.

They got caught previously and "fired" people but really didn't.

This is a company like so many that literally sticks up the middle finger.

Until we start tossing executives in prison for hiring illegal invaders and filing fraudulent documents it will not stop.

Fines are not effective; they just get passed on to customers.  Nor do threats.

Prison, on the other hand, would be quite effective since you can't hire illegal invaders from prison.

So where are the handcuffs so-called "MAGA" Mr. ****face tRUMP?

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2019-11-15 08:44 by Karl Denninger
in Federal Government , 131 references
[Comments enabled]  

Since by Taaarrump's standards there's only one thing that matters, why, everything is fine.

Uh huh.

Nobody cares that the reason the market is going up is the $206 billion in fake "money" that the Federal Government has "injected" into the "economy" since October 1st!

That's roughly five percent of all federal spending -- in roughly six weeks, and not one penny of it has been paid in via taxes.

Ron Paul used to scream "audit The Fed!" on a near-daily basis.  The fact is that The Fed which should be audited is The Federal Government, not The Federal Reserve.

There is exactly one place all of this comes from: Congress.  By the Constitution all spending bills must originate in The House.  This sort of outrageous deficit spending for a while, and in fact quite a while, does indeed lift asset prices.

The problem is that it lifts debt service requirements on a permanent basis which is why Trump is now screaming about lower and lower rates.  That, however, simply forces people to borrow even more -- while it looks like the economy is doing very well the facts are something else entirely: Net of encumbrances, including debt, you're getting screwed.

This sort of nonsense is exactly what led to the blow-up in 2008.  We're now doing it at a scale that makes the 2005-2007 period look like a Girl Scout cookie sale.  We will not get away with it and there is no realistic means to exit from these policies either.

How long do we have?  Best bet is by 2024, simply because by that time Medicare and Medicaid will eat the federal budget.  The bad news is that markets always front-run the "death date" by some unknowable amount of time -- so the odds that we actually make it to 2024 before everything goes to Hell is very low.

Enjoy the blow-off, but beware the blow-up.

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2019-02-13 14:50 by Karl Denninger
in Federal Government , 436 references
[Comments enabled]  

There's simply no other way to express this....

 

These numbers are for only three months, so for the full year multiply by four.

Again, the total "social insurance and retirement" tax grab is $274 billion.  Social Security is a 12.3% tax (up to the cap) and Medicare is 2.9% (no cap.)  The split is thus roughly-speaking ~19% Medicare, the rest (81%) Social Security.

If you want to get down into the detailed numbers they don't "quite" add there because there is both spending and tax revenue that gets bucketed in each from the various line items.  But it's not off by much; the "line item" (without the bucketing) comes up as 74/26 -- not materially different.

81% of $274 billion is $222 billion.  Social Security spent $251 billion.  That's a ~29 billion shortfall.  Not good but there are a lot of Treasuries held against that requirement, and by 2026 the budget impact as a percentage starts to fall because the boomers start to die, statistically speaking.  In other words Social Security had a ~12% shortfall over the first three months, indistinguishable from my last look (12% .vs. 13%.)  This is easily fixable on a forward basis without much economic pain.

Medicare, on the other hand, spent $153 billion but took in just $52 billion.  That's a shortfall of 66%; that is, two thirds of it is unfunded.  You would have to more than triple the Medicare Tax Rate in order to bring it to parity.

That's an "improvement" over the nearly 75% deficit in the first month but we are in fact talking about bleeding out in two minutes rather than three; the outcome does not change.

Add to that "Health" (Medicaid, mostly) and it's much worse; now you take in $52 billion but pay out nearly $300 billion.

Note that the deficit thus far is $319 billion.  If you were to get rid of the deficit between Medicare and Medicaid .vs. tax receipts you would almost close the deficit to zero.  If you also increased the FICA tax rate by 13% (to just under 7% for "each half"), increased the income cap where it stops being collected or some combination that wounds up in the same place as well the deficit would be effectively zero.

$319 billion over three months equals roughly $1,300 billion, or close to $1.3 trillion in deficit for the entire fiscal year.  The only good news is that April is usually a strongly positive month (as a result of taxes being due) but either way the deficit is almost-certain to be in the neighborhood of $1.1 trillion this year.

You cannot fix this with either taxation or cost-shifting. It is mathematically impossible to do so.

For example you'd have to nearly double the individual income tax rate on everyone, including the middle class; to close the gap by increasing the corporate tax rate you would have to raise it by more than an insane and utterly impossible 600%.  Any claim that we can solve this by making people pay "their fair share" is a flat-out lie.

You cannot get there by "cutting spending" on other than these programs either; if you cut all "other spending" to zero along with transportation and education you'd only cover 30% of the deficit.  Cutting military spending to zero (which is obviously impossible) wouldn't get there either.

There is only one way to solve this problem and that is to collapse Medicare and Health spending by 80%.  You can only resolve the problem by collapsing the medical and health insurance monopoliesforcing everyone to publish a price for everything and charge everyone the same price, where said price must be handed out before service is provided, along with telling everyone involved that for any and all conditions in which a lifestyle change will remove the need for treatment government will pay zero unless the person in question makes that change.

The trend is not improving and it is not "The Next Generation" that will have to deal with this.

This has to stop right damn now or it will blow up before we get through the next Presidential term -- and no, you cannot tax your way out of it either.  The people in Washington DC -- Congress and the President -- must be held personally and politically responsible for their refusal to deal with the only way to put a stop to it, which is to destroy the medical monopolists using existing, 100+ year old law, and to do it right damn now.

And if they refuse we the people must enforce our demand for them to do so.  They will refuse, I remind you, unless forced by the people -- and there are peaceful and lawful means to do exactly that (e.g. a general strike.)

Nothing less than the literal existence of this nation as a Constitutional Republic is at stake.

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2019-01-25 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Federal Government , 141 references
[Comments enabled]  

Yes, we need a wall.  Why?  Because bad people sneak in without one.

They do with one too, but it's harder and thus there are fewer attempts, and even fewer successes.  That's good, not bad.

You have to want more illegal invaders to refuse physical barriers.  Just as locking your car or house does not make it impossible to steal from either, it increases the difficulty and thus makes it less-likely.  $5 billion in the context of the federal budget is just over one tenth of one percent of spending.  Any gain in security is worth that amount of money.

But if you want to stop the insanity generally you have to force Congress to keep the promise it made when Reagan gave amnesty to illegals: You must stop the handouts.

Reagan was promised wide-scale immigration reform to end the enticement to come illegally, on a permanent basis, in return for amnesty for illegals already here.  He gave Congress the amnesty.  He never got the elimination of the enticements and it was the Democrats that didn't give it to him.

This is the same political party refusing now and it does not matter that most of those reps and senators are no longer serving; the party itself is the same.

Trump therefore should demand, before any further negotiation, that the past promise be fulfilled.

It's not that hard to do:

  • 100% E-Verify, under criminal felony penalty for failures to do so and business seizure for a second offense.  No exceptions.  This is trivially enforceable; employers already have to file 941s to report withholding taxes.  Add one field for each employee that must contain the E-Verify control number on each report.  Change the law so that non-reporting or false reporting on a 941 is a felony criminal offense with a statutory penalty of $5,000 per employee, per month not reported or falsified and that all directors, officers and employees involved in producing said false report are subject to a year in prison, consecutively, for each employee not reported.   This instantly ends employment capability for illegal invaders.

  • No welfare or other government program of any kind that is in whole or part funded by the Federal Government (specifically: Medicare, Medicaid, Section 8, Food Stamps, WIC, S-CHIP, Education, etc) may be provided to any household unless all residing there are verified US Citizens or permanent residents.  Require prosecution for lies on said forms verifying eligibility and require that any such lie is a felony.

  • No medical treatment without proof of payment is required of any facility except as pure charity care to any person who is not a lawful permanent resident or citizen.  All such care amounts, if provided without payment, must be publicly disclosed no less often than quarterly in aggregate along with the total amount of actual collected payments for services by all medical facilities (in other words if they're going to try to make you pay for it under the table they have to disclose it.)

  • No remittances may be sent out out of the country without positive identification and proof of lawful residency or citizenship from the person doing the sending.  Period.

  • No birthright citizenship.  Come here and crap out a baby, it's a citizen of whatever nation you are but isn't an American citizen.  You must be a citizen to confer citizenship at birth.  Period.

  • Unlawful entry must be defined as a criminal felony and permanent bar to future entry for any reason.  If you wish to claim asylum, come to the border and lawfully request it.  If you wish to visit, come to the border and lawfully request entry.  If you cheat from this day forward no matter how or why you are permanently barred from ever entering the United States.

  • Those nations which border ours must be held responsible for any person who is on their soil and makes an attempt at unlawful entry, or who is turned away or deferred during an asylum request until their case is heard.  If you are our neighbor and call yourself "friend" and "trading partner" then start acting like one.  If someone illegally enters from your nation you have a responsibility to take them back when we catch them.  If someone comes into your nation with the purpose of requesting asylum in our nation and you allow them to do that's fine, but that person's safety and place to live is on you until their claim is adjudicated.  What you do from there and whether you let the people in to make said claims in the first place is your business.  Any nation that refuses, even once, to take back an illegal invader caught after unlawful entry from their nation, or a person with a deferred or refused asylum request that presents at our shared border has all trade and border crossing closed until it accepts back the person or persons it allowed to attempt to invade our nation from their land.

For those already here who, the claim is, we should "take care of" (e.g. Dreamers, etc)

  • If you came here as a child and are now an adult you must have graduated High School and demonstrate proficiency at a minimum standardized testing level in all applicable subject matter, including the English language, to qualify for further deferment.  While there are some "Dreamers" who are college students or even graduates at this point virtually all covered by this program are now adults.  ROUGHLY HALF have failed to graduate High School, demonstrate functional literacy in English or both.  These are not "Dreamers", they are public charges and must not be given anything beyond the theft they've already accumulated.  That one in ten -- or one in 100 -- is a high-achieving college graduate or student does not in any way extend to those who are either slugs or thugs.

  • If you came here as a child and still are one you must complete your education and become proficient in English. Drop out or get kicked out and you both lose your eligibility and are immediately deported.

  • You must have an executed Affidavit of Responsibility as for any other legal immigrant by an existing citizen who is responsible for you.  In other words you must have a citizen sponsor who both can and will take financial responsibility to prevent you from being a public charge.  This is required of legal immigrants and it damn well needs to be required here too.

  • You must not have a criminal record of any sort more-serious than a routine traffic violation.  Any conviction for an offense against the public peace including robbery, DUI, drug dealing, shoplifting and of course more-serious criminal activity, whether by conviction or plea, is an automatic disqualifying event, without exception.

  • You must document that you have either received all of your support from your sponsor or have lawfully worked and paid taxes in full.  This includes educational, medical and other government-funded expenses; if you received public education you or your sponsor must repay the fully-laden per-pupil cost of same.  If you received medical care under Medicaid or similar you must reimburse the full amount spent on your care by the government.  If you worked under the table you must demonstrate that you personally paid all the taxes otherwise due including both halves of FICA.  If you haven't done so up until now as a result of intentional conduct (e.g. working for cash under the table) you may be excused from criminal liability for your intentional conduct but you must report and pay all such tax arrears anyway, including interest and penalties as with any other intentional underpayment and you must begin to do so immediately and on an agreed payment plan without exception, or your sponsor must do so, until it is all paid off.

  • Assuming the above is met you may have a provisional green card however you still go to the back of the line and are subject to all of the above until your turn comes up in our normal, legal immigration proceeding.  Once your turn does come up you may have full permanent residency and ultimately apply for naturalization as may any other lawful permanent resident.

That's the minimum opening requirement.

If we do not shut off the welfare state for illegal invaders we will never solve the problem.

Leave the government shut down until this is passed first.

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