THE DON JONES INDEX…

 

GAINS POSTED in GREEN

  LOSSES POSTED in RED

        9/24/18…  15,836.60

        9/17/18…  15,821.83

        6/27/13…  15,000.00

      

 (THE DOW JONES INDEX:  9/24/18… 26,743.50; 9/17/18… 26,154.67; 6/27/13… 15,000.00)

 

 

LESSON for September 24, 2018 – WHERE DEMOCRACY GOES to SHRIVEL UP and DIE in the DARK!

 

I think we can take this as a given – President Djonald Unchained Trump does not like the lying media.  When he says bad things, they report it.  When he does bad things, they report it… sometimes with pictures that have obviously been doctored by the Democrats or Dr. Evil or Doctor Dre… and when his family and flunkies collude with Russians, they turn tail and run, squealing to Mister Mueller.

No, Donald Trump does not like the media, with a very few exceptions… and some of these are starting to irk him too.  But the question becomes – what can he do?

Shut them down?  That would require bringing charges of sedition?  To do so… perhaps through an exhumation of the House Un-American Activities Committee… would require legislation by the Congress and confirmation by the courts, inevitably the Supremes.  The latter may be achievable within a couple of weeks, but getting a goof-proof version passed by the House and Senate and sent to the President’s desk (where, as Anonymous alleges, deep state operatives in the White House might just swipe the documents away before Trump can sign them), would be difficult before November (owing to the queasiness of so many Republicans in tight races for their political survival to take on the First Amendment, despite some polls showing that the GOP will hold on to the Senate and, perhaps, the House.

And thereafter, if other polls showing a blue tide at the ballot box are correct… and they were not, in 2016… it would become impossible unless some wordsmithing genius in the West Wing were able to marry a proscription of antagonizing the President with some sort of criminalization of hate speech, microaggression or other bugaboos that trigger the sensitivities of the well-scrubbed and prosperous undergraduates of progressive blue state universities.  Maybe a few Congresspersons could be peeled away from the First Amendment and a Senator or two, either to draft and pass said legislation or to uphold a Presidential Executive Order bringing back the guillotine for malcontents.

But these possibilities are remote and, if he is willing to be patient, President Trump and all of the enemies of free speech of the left and the right alike may, over time, prevail.

At least in the real, if not virtual world.

Newspapers, books and magazines are dying and network television news is sick (in both the contextual and economic senses),  That the growing conviction that news is fake (77% of Americans and 92% of Republicans don’t trust the mass media) is part of the problem faced by thousands of daily, weekly and monthly journals; but the lesser part.  What is really killing really the institutional press is the explosion of the internet with its free content, social media forums, blogs, conspiracy theories and partisan websites which many prefer inasmuch as they reinforce already-existing prejudices.

And they are cheap to set up and run… yours truly a stellar example of same.  Democratization of the press is a good thing in that it allows hitherto suppressed voices to be heard, but a bad thing in that there are few standards of decency, veracity and balance left to be violated and some of these suppressed voices (Communists, Nazis, Islamists, the pedophile with plastic guns… see Index, below) promote not mere dissension but real-world terrorism and should be suppressed.

Not all Don Joneses are stupid or crazy enough to believe a blogger who alleges that the Clintons are running a child sex slave racket in the basement of a local pizzeria… but one did, and it only takes one.

The economics of the World Wide Web are mystifying.  Apparently, most of the income of three and a half of The Five (Google, Facebook and Microsoft… Apple does sell its devices as does Amazon, as well as other stuff, including books, newspapers and magazines).  Why any sane person with an IQ over 45 would click on a Nigerian sweepstakes scam is a big, black mark against American education, but they do.

Consequently, the clickbait’s screentime and phonetime are luring many away from the old-school media and particularly the community press, which lacks the resources to ride out what traditionalists still hope is just a passing fad.  Two of the latest casualties were the Herald-Progress, based in Ashland, a town about 15 miles north of Richmond, and the Caroline Progress, somewhat further north... both of which folded on March 29th was closed on the same day.

Both had undergone what many now see as the first stage of the decompository process... absorption by a distant corporate giant with few or no community ties and eyes on the bottom line (in both cases, the Lakeway media group).  Lakeway president R. Jack Fishman, said of the Herald-Progress, “Unfortunately, the paper is no longer commercially viable.”

Television and the Internet now bring news to the consumer faster and in a more visual style than newspapers, which are constrained by their physical format, their physical manufacturing and distribution and the high cost of American equipment, unionized labor and legacy expenses (such as pensions).  And the Internet search function allows advertisers to tailor their pitch to readers who have revealed what they are seeking — an enormous advantage in and of itself, not to mention the swelling revenues from selling their consumer’s browsing habits to big data (which sells profiles back to advertisers, as well as to other, more sinister inquisitors into Don Jones’ health, employment suitability, sexuality and political leanings.

“Today is kind of a sucky day,” Barbey told the staff of the once-powerful leftist rag Village Voice, when it shut its doors. “Due to, basically, business realities, we’re going to stop publishing…”

Free services like Craigslist have decimated the classified advertising departments of newspapers, some of which depended on classifieds for 70% of their ad revenue. Research has shown that Craigslist cost the newspaper industry $5.4 billion from 2000-2007, and that changes on the classified side of newspaper business led to an increase in subscription prices, a decrease in display advertising rates, and impacted the online strategy of some newspapers. At the same time, newspapers have been pinched by consolidation of large department stores, which once accounted for substantial advertising sums.

Social media sites are not saddled with expensive union contracts, printing presses, delivery fleets and overhead built over decades. Many of these competitors are simply 'aggregators' of news, often derived from print sources, but without print media's capital-intensive overhead.  One estimate put the percentage of online news derived from newspapers at 80%, and now these sites are training their sights on television.

Nine years ago, Time Magazine (itself a survivor today, but barely) reprinted a 24/7 Wall Street survey (See Attachment Two) that identified ten major market media most at risk... these including the Miami Herald, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, even the Chronicle in pricey San Francisco.

Most of these still limp along... abetted by enormous salary decreases for their unionized staff and reporters.  Small town papers, however, have nothing left to cut.  The St. Joseph Leader and The County Star in Illinois closed at the end of August, following the North Little Rock Times and the Lonoke County Democrat in Arkansas.

In response to falling ad revenues and plunging circulation, many newspapers have cut staff as well as editorial content, and those cuts often spur more and deeper circulation declines—triggering more loss of ad revenues. "No industry can cut its way to future success," said industry analyst John Morton a decade ago. "At some point the business must improve.

That point has not been reached and is, in fact, receding further and further into the horizon.

Social media sites are now overtaking television as a source for news for young people and news organisations have become increasingly reliant on social media platforms for generating traffic. and those that can afford to do so increasingly use advanced artificial intelligence (AI) technology to post stories more effectively and generate higher volumes of traffic.  Those which cannot simply die off.

While newspaper companies continue to produce much of the award-winning journalism, consumers of that journalism are less willing to pay for it in a world where information on the Web is plentiful and free. Plans for Web-based subscription services have largely faltered, with the exception of financial outlets like The Wall Street Journal, which have been able to generate substantial revenues from subscribers whose subscriptions are often underwritten by corporate employers. (Subscriptions to the Journal's paid Web site were up 7% in 2008.) Some general-interest newspapers, even high-profile papers like The New York Times, were forced to experiment with their initial paid Internet subscription models. Times Select, the Times' initial pay service, lasted exactly two years before the company abandoned it.[64] However, they later brought back paid services and now allow visitors only 10 free articles per month before requiring them to purchase a subscription.

With profits falling, many newspapers have cut back on their most expensive reporting projects — overseas bureaus and investigative journalism.  Some investigative projects often take months, with their payoff uncertain. In the past, larger newspapers often devoted a portion of their editorial budget to such efforts, but with ad dollars drying up, many papers are looking closer at the productivity of individual reporters, and judging speculative investments in investigative reports as non-essential.  Thus, the proliferation of harmless “happy news” features and boilerplate lists of random, violent criminality leavened by the occasional reprinting of a New York or Washington (or Hollywood) expose.  For organized crooks, especially those with political or business friends in high places, it’s a godsend.

For small-town governments... especially in the red states,,, it’s a nightmare.

When a local newspaper closes, the cost of government increases. That’s the conclusion of new survey from Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, which draws a direct line between loss of the watchful eyes of local newspapers and a decline in government efficiency.

Paul Gao, a professor of finance at the college, said he got the idea for the study while watching John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight about the decline of local newspapers almost two years ago.

The result of that study, Financing Dies in Darkness? The Impact of Newspaper Closures on Public Finance, argues there is a direct correlation between the loss of a local paper and higher costing – or less efficient – government.

“Dozens of local newspapers have closed, reduced their printing schedule or gone online in recent years. Circulation numbers have fallen approximately 27% from 2003 to 2014, according to the Pew Research Center, and there has been a 35% decline in statehouse reporters.

“Those reductions have come with a cost, according to Gao. A local newspaper, the authors conclude, holds an important and unique role in the proper functioning of the government and markets.

“Some people told us a local newspaper doesn’t have an important local role. Others said they may play a role, but something else, some other alternative source of media, will come in,” Gao told the Guardian UK. “We think the local newspaper plays an important and unique role that cannot be easily replaced by an online source or national news media.”

Gao’s team looked at how tax dollars were being spent while Denver’s Rocky Mountain News paper was being published and then again after the paper had closed in 2009. The researchers concluded that Rocky Mountain News stories had served as a watchdog agent. Without it, the spread or yield of newly issued local municipal bonds increased by 37 basis points.

In other words, local government’s cost of borrowing money – and therefore risk – had increased once the paper had gone.

The researchers also looked at the Cincinnati Post, which closed in 2007. In that instance too, the median yield spread for newly issued local municipal bonds increased by about 66.1 basis points – another indication, according to the authors, that public finances suffer when a newspaper closes.

 

The problem is not unique to America and may actually be worse in smaller nations with a smaller press pool and less commitment to democracy where the press has to combat not only poverty and authoritarian governments, but the occasionally murderous mob or lone wolf assassin that doesn’t like what has been written about them, their gang or... cue Charlie Hebdo... their God.

The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN) tracks the murder of journalists and has determined that, although most incidents occur in the Middle East, silencing the press by killing them can also be useful to totalitarians of every stripe.  (See Attachment Three)

The Hungarian paper Magyar Nemzet closed in April, as the country's media is slowly becoming less and less objective according to NPR's Mary Louise Kelly’s talks with journalist Flora Garamvolgyi, who covered foreign affairs for the paper. “A lot of media organizations in Hungary survive financially because they're accepting government advertising,” Kelly noted.  “Your newspaper did not.”

Garamvolgyi answered that Hungarians now have to read (and believe) the government-run press or read foreign online newspapers that have not been blocked yet.  “People have been made to consume racist, xenophobic, anti-immigration propaganda all over the news, like, daily. So it's a much bigger issue than just, like, a newspaper shutting down.”

In the United Kingdom, newspaper publishers have been similarly hit. In late 2008 The Independent announced job cuts, and in 2016 The Independent's print edition ceased circulation.  In January the chain Associated Newspapers, now DMG Media, sold a controlling stake in the London Evening Standard as it announced a 24% decline in 2008 ad revenues. In March 2009 parent company Daily Mail and General Trust said job cuts would be deeper than expected, spanning its newspapers, which include the Leicester Mercury, the Bristol Evening Post and the Derby Telegraph. 

Reuters described how a 'second wave of disruption' has hit news organisations, with Europublishers such as The Economist and Le Monde having to employ large social media teams to optimise their posts and maximise traffic.

Newspapers in Switzerland and the Netherlands, for instance, have lost half of their classified advertising to the Internet. At its annual convention slated for May 2009, in Barcelona, Spain, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN) titled the convention's subject "Newspapers Focus on Print & Advertising Revenues in Difficult Times" after calling for regulators to block a proposed Google–Yahoo! advertising partnership, calling it a threat to newspaper industry revenues worldwide.  WAN painted a stark picture of the threat posed to newspapers by the search engine giants. "Perhaps never in the history of newspaper publishing has a single, commercial entity threatened to exert this much control over the destiny of the press," said the Paris-based global newspaper organization of the proposed pact.

(At least that particular merger failed to happen... for the reason that the internet/social media that has devoured the newspapers and magazines and is sharpening its knives for television is also cannibalizing itself.  Yahoo, whose ad revenues increased only 5% 2016 – 19 as compared to Google’s 50%)

The only redoubts of newspapers are in Latin America, Asia and the Middle East, but fell in other regions of the world, where fewer people can afford to hook up (or, increasingly, may access an Internet café or possess a cheap local version of the iPhone, but do not yet have the disposable income necessary to draw the attention of predatory advertisers or are hampered by authoritarian governments terrified by the free exchange of information). While Internet revenues are rising for the industry, the bulk of its Web revenues come from a few areas, with most revenue generated in the North America and Western Europe.  But if an accommodation between despotism and commerce can be reached... as witness the ongoing negotiations between Facebook, Google and China, the road to Jeff Bezos’ second hundred billion will be considerably shorter than his first.

Canada has been particularly hard hit by newspaper closings.  Postmedia says it is closing down six community newspapers in Ontario and Alberta, and halting the print editions at three other papers in Manitoba and Ontario as it moves to cut costs.

The company said in a note to staff that the Graphic in Portage la Prairie, Man., the Northern News in Kirkland Lake, Ont., and (after 163 years) the Pembroke Observer in Pembroke, Ont., will halt their print editions but keep a digital presence.

Meanwhile, the newspapers scheduled to close in the coming weeks include two in Alberta, the Camrose Canadian and the Strathmore Standard, along with four publications in Ontario, the Kapuskasing Northern Times, the Ingersoll Times, the Norwich Gazette and the Petrolia Topic.

"Now, another historic Canadian newspaper will die, and proud Pembroke will face the threat of becoming a local news desert," said Unifor local president Paul Morse, who faces the devil’s perception of accepting pay cuts to below the living wage standard or no jobs at all.

Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada) journalism professor Chris Waddell said the cuts are not really unexpected.

"What we've been seeing in smaller community newspapers is the same thing that we've been seeing in bigger newspapers as well, which is the decline in advertising revenue, for one thing, and on the other side, a decline in circulation and readership," he said.

"At some point, it just becomes too expensive to continue to operate under those circumstances or they don't see any way to actually turn things around as they decide to shut papers down to save money."

As befits Canada’s socialistic tendencies, the information underclass has been looking to government for a solution.  "We have asked the federal government to help newspapers transition to new and economically sustainable ways to deliver local news but have been met with essentially empty platitudes," said Morse.  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government has pledged $50 million to support local news coverage and proposed legal changes that might help nonprofit news ventures to raise money. But at this point, these are little more than symbolic gestures and, potentially, dangerous ones (should a monarcho-populist oaf like the late Rob Ford arise again).

But, as the Hungarians have learned, as also the Turks and the Russians, not to mention China, sometimes you get what you wish for – and it’s not what everybody would wish for...

The Trump Tribune?  The Soros Sun?

Djonald Unchained would only be playing catch-up with partisan rival Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon.com, paid US $250 million for The Washington Post and several smaller newspapers. (The Post company had sold Newsweek a few years earlier.) The purchase, which ended the more than 80-year ownership of the paper by the Graham family, was called "generous" by publisher Katharine Weymouth, who was asked to remain at the helm. When it was noted that the paper might have to run stories which are critical of Amazon.com or Bezos in the future, Bezos agreed not to interfere with the newspaper's independence. Others say that Bezos drastically overpaid for the paper, and that late publisher Katharine Graham might[not have made the sale.

As an alternative to government collusion, some advocates have suggested that non-profit foundations like ProPublica (a $10-million-a-year foundation devoted solely to investigative reporting and overseen by former Wall Street Journal editor Paul Steiger) release their investigative reports free, courtesy of partnerships with such outlets as The New York Times, The Atlantic and 60 Minutes.

Inevitably, the conservative donor class... able to subsidize journalism either via handouts or those full-page PR spreads that portray workplace exploiters, polluters and bigots as friends of labor, the environment and God... will enter the arena.  The only question is whether they will go analog (newsprint) or digital.

Anybody ready for the Koch Post?

 

But, of course, the best news for liberals (and for the deep right state officials in the White House who want to bring back sedition trials or, at least, toughen the libel laws towards those in the U.K. meaning that wealthy plaintiffs or defendants can outlast and outlawyer their enemies comes from... of all places... Forbes Magazine, that august journal of vulture capitalism and nest of Steve Forbes who... before Mitt Romney... failed to understand that, while Don Jones might vote for a crass billionaire as the lesser of two evils, he doesn’t like haughty princelings.

Noting that Donald Trump tweeted that the New York Times is “losing thousands of subscribers” a few days after winning the 2016 election, Forbes admitted that: “As it turns out, that’s not true.

“Not only is Trump’s statement wrong, but the president-elect has likely even helped the newspaper grow its readership. The Associated Press reports that within just one week after Election Day, the Times saw its digital subscriptions boost by 41,000. That is the largest one-week increase it has seen since the paper launched its digital subscription model in 2011.”

The papers that are going under tend to be the sole outlets in mid to smaller urban areas that serve a wider rural readership... in other words, the pro-Trump red state press.  The big, blue coastal behemoths may be suffering, but they have the resources to hold out for years, if not decades.  If they have to, they’ll gouge their workers, who are mostly out of options except for sub-minimum gigs at dicey blogs and... despite some studies that showed journalism graduates had the worst job prospects of 246 professions, the schools keep churning out young idealists who think that Woodward and Bernstein are still relevant.

So maybe Trump ought to polish off the Alien & Sedition acts (he’s already down with the “alien” part) and start locking up the remaining obstreperous journalists.  But he’ll have to move carefully, and quickly... unless America is in for an even bigger electoral surprise than in 2016.

Otherwise, POTUS may have to turn to some rather odd allies to turn things around and KAGA – and we’ll tell you who next week (depending on the vicissitudes of the hearings, after which Rosenstein and Kavanaugh may be dead).  While the Republican Senate majority (consisting of Susan Collins of Maine) presses forward to confirm the latter before the election and Democrats struggle to stall the nominating process until after the election... (actually until January – would Chuck Grassley and Mitch McConnell and whoever replaces Paul Ryan plow on through the snow in a flying sleigh behind a team of lame ducks?  Of course they would!)... the only living American jurist capable of rendering fair and balance justice has, so far, demurred from taking a stand.

Judge Judy isn't sharing her personal feelings on Christine Blasey Ford's accusation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, but she does hope that both sides get a fair shot at sharing their stories.

TMZ caught up with the longtime television judge to pick her brain about the mounting tension as Ford reportedly prepares to testify, and she had a measured response to a multitude of questions.

"Do you think Mrs. Ford will get a fair hearing?" she was asked.

"I hope so," Judge Judy responded as she entered a store in Los Angeles.

Once she exited the store, the paparazzi had more opportunity to chat with her.

"One hopes that people wait and don't rush to judgement and listen to both sides of an argument before they make a decision," she explained. "That's what's supposed to happen in a fair judicial process."

There's always the hope [that] the reasoned people will listen to both sides of an argument before they make a judgement. That's what people are supposed to do," she went on. "They're not supposed to rush to judgement on either side; they're supposed to listen to evidence and then make a judgement. And, if that doesn't happen, then the end result is not fair."

When pressed to shed light on her personal feelings of the case -- does she believe Kavanaugh or Ford? -- the judge was quick to shut those inquiries down. Clearly, she was eager to remain impartial.

"I'm not answering that question," she said multiple times. "I've just given you a great answer."

"I think that everyone is supposed to listen to both sides of an argument before you make a a judgement. If you don't listen to both sides of an argument before you listen to a judgement, then you don't get the right result," she finished. "One can only hope."

Back to the failing newspapers (absent the thriving New York Times, here’s a final shot from Splice contributor Bill Wyman, postulating five reasons why newspapers are failing and... unique to most coroners’ slab conclusions... suggests nine ways that the print media can survive, if not necessarily thrive, in the brave new digital world.

“The unspoken corollary of all of this is that the papers’ troubles are going to get worse, and probably won’t ever get better. No one as yet has a business plan that will work, mostly because the papers just don’t have anything to sell that can approximate the size of the lost value from their vaporized monopolies.  And, of course, they are too wedded to past practices.

“If I were running a chain of papers, here’s what I’d do...”  (See Attachment Four, below.)

 

 

Don Jones,

 

 

 

THE DON JONES INDEX

CHART of CATEGORIES w/VALUE ADDED to EQUAL BASELINE of 15,000

(REFLECTING… approximately… DOW JONES INDEX of June 27, 2013)

See a further explanation of categories here

                                                                          ECONOMIC INDICES (60%)

                                                                                                                                              

DON JONES’ PERSONAL ECONOMIC INDEX (45% of TOTAL INDEX POINTS)

 

        INCOME

(24%)

6/27/13

LAST

CHANGE

NEXT

9/17/18

9/24/18

OUR SOURCE(S) and COMMENTS

 

Wages (hourly, per capita)

9%

1350 points

9/24/18

+0.35%

Oct. 2018

1,494.59

1,494.59

http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/wages   22.73

 

Median Income (yearly)

4%

600

9/24/18

+0.06%

10/1/18

684.03

684.41

debtclock.org/    32.216

 

Unempl. (BLS – in millions

4%

600

9/24/18

    nc

Oct. 2018

1,167.12

1,167.12

http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000     3.9

 

Official (DC - in millions)

2%

300

9/24/18

-4.16%

10/1/18

551.04

551.22

http://www.usdebtclock.org/      6.228

 

Unofficl. (DC - in millions)

2%

300

9/24/18

-3.94%

10/1/18

543.93

545.53

http://www.usdebtclock.org/    11,867

 

Workforce Participation

Number (in millions)

Percentage (DC)

2%

300

9/24/18

+0.25%

 -0.19%

10/1/18

284.04

283.47

Americans in/not in workforce (mil.)

In: 155,660 Out 96,377 Total 252,037

http://www.usdebtclock.org/  61.76%

 

WP Percentage (ycharts)*

1%

150

7/9/18

 -0.32%

Oct. 2018

150.59

150.59

http://ycharts.com/indicators/labor_force_participation_rate 62.70

 

OUTGO

(15%)

 

 

Total Inflation (aggregate)

7%

1050

8/13/18

+0.2

10/1/18

965.48

965.48

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm     +0.2

Inflation – Food

2%

300

8/13/18

+0.1

10/1/18

276.74

276.74

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm     +0.1

               - Gasoline

2%

300

8/13/18

+3.0

10/1/18

281.57

281.57

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm     +3.0

               - Medical Costs

2%

300

8/13/18

-0.2

10/1/18

261.72

261.72

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm      -0.2

               -  Shelter

2%

300

8/13/18

+0.3

10/1/18

279.46

279.46

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm     +0.3

       WEALTH

(6%)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dow Jones Index

2%

300

9/24/18

+2.25

10/1/18

471.87

482.49

Dow – 26,743.50

 

Homes – Sales

             -  Valuation

1%

1%

150

150

8/27/18

Sales  -0.74%        Valu. -2.64%

Oct. 2018

195.48        239.08

195.48        239.08

http://www.realtor.org/research-and-statistics nc

Sales (M):  5.34 Valuations (K):  269.6

 

 

Debt (Personal)

2%

300

9/24/18

+0.09%

10/1/18

256.50

256.27

http://www.usdebtclock.org/    58,151

 

 

AMERICAN ECONOMIC INDEX (15% of TOTAL INDEX POINTS)

 

 

      NATIONAL

(10%)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Revenues (in trillions – tr.)

2%

300

9/24/18

+0.27%

10/1/18

380.19

381.13

debtclock.org/       3.304

 

Expenditures (in tr.)

2%

300

9/24/18

+0.33%

10/1/18

250.37

239,547

debtclock.org/       4.216

 

National Debt (tr.)

3%

450

9/24/18

+0.06%

10/1/18

339.14

338.93

http://www.usdebtclock.org/    21,493

 

Aggregate Debt (tr.)

3%

450

9/24/18

+0.08%

10/1/18

360.75

360.46

http://www.usdebtclock.org/    71,241

 

       GLOBAL

(5%)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foreign Debt (tr.)

2%

300

9/24/18

-0.02%

10/1/18

314.62

314.62

http://www.usdebtclock.org/   6.225

 

Exports (in billions – bl.)

1%

150

9/24/18

-1.26%

Oct. ‘18

167.36

167.36

https://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/Press-Release/current_press_release/exh1.txt 211.1

 

Imports (bl.)

1%

150

9/24/18

-0.38%

Oct. ‘18

127.54

127.54

https://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/Press-Release/current_press_release/exh1.txt 261.2

 

Trade Deficit (bl.)

1%

150

9/24/18

-7.58%

Oct. ‘18

100.50

100.50

Do the math.

 

     

                                                                         SOCIAL INDICES (40%)

LIBERTY and SECURITY INDEX           (15%)

ACTS of MAN

(12%)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

World Peace

3%

450

9/24/18

 +0.1%

10/1/18

439.37

439.81

NoKo and SoKo resume nuke talks.  US solicits Polish military bases.  Israel denies shooting down Russian plane.

 

Terrorism

2%

300

9/24/18

  -0.4%

10/1/18

222.76

223.65

Plane thief in Seattle… suicidal or terrorist copycat?  Fugitive Trump hater run to earth in Ohio after months of pursuit with cops and dogs.  Terrorists strike Iran which, of course, blames America.

 

Politics

3%

450

9/24/18

     nc

10/1/18

441.73

441.73

Second accuser comes forward in Kavanaugh case.  Rosenstein accused of wiretapping and plotting against Trump.  Russian riots after decree to raise retirement age by 5 years.

 

Economics

3%

450

9/24/18

  -0.2%

10/1/18

446,03

445.14

US hits China with $200M in tariffs, China retaliates with $60M.  Winning!  Amazon to automate stores, Wells Fargo and UnderArmor cut workforces.  Ticketmaster accused of colluding with scalpers,  Danish banker accused of quarter-bil fraud.

 

 

Crime

1%

150

9/24/18

 +0.5%

10/1/18

233.46

232.29

Iowa golfer and Washington jogger killed by bums.  Bill Cosby headed to Pennsylvania courtroom; other courtroom shot up, 4 hit.  Reality show doc unmasked as rapist.  Lady shoots up Rite Aid, 3rd workplace attack in a day.

 

 

ACTS of GOD

(6%)

(with, in some cases, a little… or lots of… help from men, and a few women)

 

 

Environment/Weather

3%

450

9/24/18

 +0.2%

10/1/18

318.88

319.52

Isaac fizzles but Florence flooding persists, more water in Oklahoma and Texas and rare tornado in Ottawa, Canada (musses Justin’s hair?)

 

Natural/Unnatural Disasters

3%

450

9/24/18

 +0.3%

10/1/18

368.21

367.11

Florence death toll put at 34 humans, 5,000 pigs, 3,4M chickens.  Miracle survivor in Tanzania ferry sinking.  215K Nissans at risk of catching fire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LIFESTYLE and JUSTICE INDEX          (15%)

 

Science, Tech. & Education

4%

600

9/24/18

   nc

10/1/18

637.65

637.65

Japanese tailor to become first SpaceX astronaut.  NASA finds 2 more planets.  School bus driver fired for letting Junior take the wheel.

 

Equality (economic/social)

4%

600

9/24/18

+0.2%

10/1/18

729.67

731.13

Trump cuts refugee admissions to 20,000.  3D gunmaker and Minnesota congressman busted for pedophilia, Jersey sheriff fired for racism.

Health

4%

600

9/24/18

   nc

10/1/18

526.12

526.12

Ecstasy helps PTSD.  Experts tell kids to face backwards in car seats.  San Diego surgeon removes wrong kidney.  Doctors researching bone transplants.

 

Freedom and Justice

3%

450

9/24/18

+0.3%

10/1/18

513.64

515.18

Trump declassifies Russiagate papers,  NY man wrongly convicted of murder freed after 27 years, but Suge Knight gets 28.

 

All miscellaneous incidents*

(transient and cultural)

4% (7%?)