THE DON JONES INDEX…

GAINS POSTED in GREEN

LOSSES POSTED in RED

 7/16/14…  15,181.47

   7/9/14…  15,178.51

 6/27/13…  15,000.00

 

(THE DOW JONES INDEX:   7/16… 17,138.20; 7/9… 16,985.61; 6/27/13… 15,000.00)

               

LESSON for JULY 16, 2014

Adapted from LESSONS for September 17th and 24th, 2012

 

THE MOST VICIOUS PEOPLE in the WORLD (part 2)

 

Last week, the DJI… noting an article in Parade Magazine citing the United States as leading the developed world in prison population… asked if Americans were the most vicious people in the world.

Technically speaking, viciousness and criminality may overlap, but they are not one and the same.  Behaviors that contradict public morality are called vices, and are not necessarily crimes.  Marijuana possession is a crime… except in Washington and Colorado.  Alcohol consumption, even to the extent of alcoholism, is legal in all but a handful of Bible-belt counties except when it leads to crimes such as drunk driving or assaults.  Sex laws remain on the books but, with the exception of prostitution, are rarely enforced.  Bill Clinton, for example, could have been prosecuted for his adventures with Miss Monica, fined or even be made to spend his weekends picking up trash by the side of the road.  He wasn’t.  Instead, he was impeached, nearly convicted and replaced by his… Vice-President.  Church people may rail against divorce and contraception but the people aren’t listening.

Nonetheless, the concept of vice persists.

So – who are the most vicious people in the world?  On September 24, 2012, the Don Jones Index answered that question… and emphatically!

Now… as to methodology…

Maybe you’ve seen some of those books and magazines as tell you the fifty best places to retire, or the twenty best vacation towns, or, on the other hand, twenty worst places for pollution in the air or finding jobs.  One, ranking American cities from number one to number three hundred sixty four, or such, said Cincinnati was the best place in America to live, and very shortly afterwards, the race riots broke out.

The people who make these up use a lot of what are called the “criteria” and these are simply a variety of ratings on things important (local unemployment and income, prices, crime) and just baffling… another respected livability index exalts urban areas based on the quantity of their big box stores and Starbucks.

The DJI Viciousness Index, on the other hand, adheres to the tried and true… in alphabetical order: abortions, AIDS, alcohol consumption, divorce, drug use, obesity, number and gender of prisoners, smokers, and suicides. We are quantifying personal sin, remember, not necessarily individual or corporate crime… there is some overlap in prison statistics, but we’ll take up actual criminal incidents (as opposed to perpetrators caught and convicted) on a later occasion.

Choosing how to emphasize the raw data by enhancing or reducing statistics is always problematical. In order to achieve some measure of conformity among categories, we’ve taken abortions per 1,000, AIDS cases per 100, multiplied percentages of divorce, suicide and obesity by 100, added statistics for female smokers and prison inmates to the overall rates and multiplied per capita alcohol consumption by 100.

You see the difficulties? Alcohol, for instance… consumption ranges from over twenty liters per year in the sad sack ex-Soviet republic of Moldova down to a pittance in the Islamic Republics, but sources like the CIA and UN don’t discriminate between beer, for example, and high powered grain alcohols. Americans drink less than Germans, by this reasoning, but how much of the US figure is Kentucky bourbon which, most folks understand, is somewhat stronger than beer.

And then there are the drugs. There is data on hand for marijuana and amphetamines, not for heroin, cocaine or Carbona. There is also an overall index of persons arrested for drug offenses, but we discarded this. Why?  Because the persons who compiled it were idiots or, at the very least, fanatical anti-Nazis who conducted the “Eighth United Nations Survey on Crime Trends and the Operations of Criminal Justice Systems (2002) (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Centre for International Crime Prevention)”.  They determined that Germany busts 250,969 souls per 100,000 per year! Take out the infants and immigrants and eighty-year-old hausfrauleins and that comes out to the narcs arresting every German every other month. (As their prison population is about one-eighth that of America, either their justice system’s out of wack, or this is simply a revenue-raising scheme!) The Brits come in second at 183,419 per 100,000 people. America ranks #41 in drug arrests, at 560 per 100,000… zero point two of the percentage of those rootintootinTeutons… which is still only 2% of Japanese arrests and 10% of Hungary’s, but 300% of the French, and twenty time that of Spaniards.

Really?

An online commentator puzzled by the thousandfold spike in drug arrests that occur by simply crossing the Rhine simply asked: “What is this shit?” But another exculpated the UN’s well-paid researchers by concluding, “Germans love drugs.” 

Enough, then, on composition and methodology… believe it or don’t. It’s time to tote up the figures and, thereby, the Don Jones Index brings to you…

 

THE FIVE MOST VICIOUS COUNTRIES in the WORLD…

 

#5) THE UNITED KINGDOM

Those tabloids, God preserve us, have it right! Life in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is an ongoing bacchanalia of depravity… nude pool parties, snogging on the snooker tables, shagging in the Cotswolds, gluttons satisficing appetites with greasy fish and chips, washed down with Johnny Walker and pints of bitter. It’s nice to know that Swinging London has recovered from the malaise of the postwar years and Thatcher regime, Belfast from the troubles and taxes on Harry Potter royalties have enabled Edinburgh to surf a sea of single-malt to wash their haggis down. Seriously, the Brits did not come out on top in any of our sinful categories, but did exceed American appetites for alcohol and amphetamines.

#4) THE UNITED STATES

No, Parade Magazine, Americans are not the most evil persons on earth, nor even the most vicious. That said, more than a few hungry, hopeless denizens of dictatorial theocracies might well look at our rates of incarceration, obesity and divorce and run out in the street to storm embassies and burn American flags. Others just want to get over here and join the party. All said, our rates of alcohol and tobacco consumption aren’t that bad and, despite all the headlines, we do not take nearly as many drugs (if one believes the U.N.) as do the stoners down under, like in...

#3) NEW ZEALAND

It’s the Kiwis, not Germans, who really love their drugs (and the Australians come in second). Maybe it’s cause, maybe effect, but all those trippy Hobbit and Avatar movies being shot thereabouts have had corrupted the locals (or maybe the stats are skewed by the abundance of visiting Hollywood degenerates). Otherwise, the scores are about the same, or less, than those in the United States; if you believe that drug use in the Netherlands isn’t that heavy and that the Germans actually smoke below-average quantities of weed.

Aussies take more amphetamines than their neighbors to the east (and guests at a “barbie” are customarily offered one… one!... shrimp), so obesity is less of a problem, which is why they only ranked ninth in the DJI survey.

#2) RUSSIA

What a difference a couple of decades make! Used to be you had all of these grim Commies in baggy, scratchy clothes nattering on about the decadent, promiscuous west and the virtues of abstinence and tractors. Sure, Russians were known for drinking a lot… but what else was there to do, and besides, it was cold. Since they tore down the wall, however, they seem to have discovered sex… abortion rates are highest among the DJGC-35 and they rank second in divorces and AIDS. They smoke a lot, too, kill themselves and (even before the occupation) were putting the crime back in Crimea by locking up more of their own citizens than any other nation save the good ol’ USA.  And if some former Soviet Republicans like those chug-a-lugginMoldovites, Balts, Ukrainians and such kept reliable statistics, they’d be well up on our list, too. Aren’t freedom and capitalism wonderful things?

But Russians are not quite the most vicious people in the world. That distinction goes to…

#1) THAILAND

If Chicago is hog butcher to the world, Bangkok is its bordello. Not to compare the delicate ladies of Thailand to domestic swine… in fact, Thais tend to be skinny, like most Asians. They don’t drink that much either… drug data is not available, probably for cause… they smoke some, but when they marry, they tend to stay so. What rockets them to the top of the chart… or greases their slide to the bottom, so to speak… is a commercialized sexuality that’s given them the highest AIDS rate outside of Africa and the Caribbean, and a consequent approach to law enforcement that has females comprising more than a fifth of prison inmates, nearly double that of the next-highest-jailors, Singapore. Is locking up the ladies while allowing their (mostly-foreign) Dons and Johns to slide with a Jersey handshake working? Apparently not.

and… THE MOST VIRTUOUS

We would be remiss in only casting blame and aspersion without, at least, recognizing places where morality and moderation hold sway. Turkey, the only Islamic state among the DJGC-35 and, rather surprisingly, the Netherlands are far less vicious than their neighbors, but the unquestioned defenders of virtue are… the Japanese. They drink and smoke some, but consume only moderate amounts of alcohol, hardly any drugs and are thinner, even, than the Thais. And their prisons are the DJGC’s least crowded, too.

Whether it’s tradition, strong sense of community and family (or strict immigration policies, or an economic slump that has persisted for a decade longer than our own, forcing the Japanese to focus on necessities rather than vanities), Japan has a clear, unchallenged claim to being the most moral, least vicious developed nation on the face of the earth.

 

meanwhile, back in the U.S.A.

 

The pace of Don’s gains and losses slowed to a glacial pace, with no calving (breaking off) of any big sheets of ice.  Not that it was a dull week… to the contrary: war, scandal and a Dow that finally crossed the 17,000 level have proven a source of both hope and anxiety, but everything seems to be leveling out.  Perhaps it’s the end of the World Cup.

Were it not for the Dow, Don Jones would’ve seen a net gain of about a tenth of a single point – so slow and evenly matched were the circumstances that, were we back at the World Cup, the result would’ve been one of those zero-zero ties that keep Don away from soccer except every fourth year.  With the all-star game, baseball concluded the first half of a humdrum season and fall football is tainted by some athlete, somewhere, getting rousted by the cops for something.  But there’s barbecue on the grill, beer in the icechest and hey… is that the neighbor’s wife giving Don the eye?

THE DON JONES DJGC-35 VICIOUSNESS INDEX…

  

 

Abort.

 

AIDS

 

Alcohol

Smoking M         F

   Drug Use

Weed   Speed

 

Obesity

  Prisoners

Total    % F

 

Suic.

 

Div.

 

Total

unranked

South Africa

  8.0

178.00

10.16

29         8

   X             X

   X

310

X

X

X

4,607.2

1)

Thailand

  X

13.00

7.08

45         3

   X             X

7.80

331

20.3

X

0.58

1,312.6

2)

Russia

41.0

10.00

16.23

59        24

   X             X

   X

522

5.8

5.6

3.60

1,284.1

3)

New Zealand

20.7

1.00

9.99

27        24

22.23     2.97

26.50

190

4.6

3.8

2.63

1,177.2

4)

United States

22.2

6.00

9.70

32        25

12.30     0.70

33.90

730

8.5

4.5

4.95

1,158.5

5)

United Kingdom

20.7

2.00

13.24

25        23

  9.00     3.00

22.70

156

X

3.4

3.08

1,053.5

6)

Hungary

30.9

0.10

16.12

43        33

  7.19     0.03

17.70

173

6.0

5.3

X

1,017.4

7)

Spain

18.6

4.00

11.83

36        27

  7.58     0.87

15.60

152

7.8

3.2

X

1,010.9

8)

Czech Republic

17.0

1.00

16.47

43        31

  3.58     0.32

15.10

225

4.5

3.0

X

1,009.7

9)

Australia

19.6

1.00

10.21

22        19

17.93     3.60

16.40

129

6.7

4.3

2.52

992.6

10)

Israel

10.5

2.00

2.52

29        13

   X             X

22.90

236

X

2.8

X

978.9

11)

Chile

  0.8

4.00

8.81

38        33

   X             X

21.90

295

6.3

6.0

0.38

942.1

12)

France

20.9

4.00

12.48

36        27

  4.70     0.30

16.90

115

3.8

2.8

X

929.8

13)

Canada

20.3

0.30

10.20

24        17

  7.41     0.15

23.10

117

5.0

4.0

2.46

887.2

14)

Poland

   0.16

1.00

14.43

36        25

  3.38     0.30

18.00

217

X

5.5

X

882.1

15)

Korea, South

25.6

1.00

14.81

49         7

   X             X

   3.20

94

X

2.1

X

881.6

16)

Portugal

16.1

6.00

13.89

32        16

  3.68     0.24

18.00

123

7.2

3.6

0.88

866.9

17)

Singapore

24.1

1.00

1.54

35         6

   X             X

   6.90

249

10.4

1.5

0.80

836.0

18)

Brazil

   X

   X

10.08

22        13

   X             X

11.10

261

4.1

3.2

0.26

833.4

19)

Greece

12.7

1.00

11.01

63        41

  4.39     0.11

22.50

101

4.9

4.9

0.76

827.7

20)

Ireland

  5.6

2.00

14.92

   X        X

  7.91     0.68

13.00

95

X

4.2

X

827.3

21)

China

24.6

   X

5.56

51         2

   X             X

   2.90

122

4.4

X

0.79

796.4

22)

Sweden

24.6

1.00

9.98

   X        X

  0.98     0.19

12.00

70

5.4

2.4

X

794.4

23)

Switzerland

12.1

4.00

11.41

31         4

  8.50     0.80

   8.20

76

6.2

2.7

X

745.7

24)

Iceland

16.0

0.30

7.38

27        21

   X             X

12.40

117

4.7

5.3

x

742.1

25)

Germany

13.8

1.00

12.14

32        25

  4.10     0.48

12.90

83

5.0

2.6

X

733.6

26)

Denmark

20.2

2.00

12.02

30        28

  4.02     0.68

11.40

74

4.7

2.1

2.81

728.3

27)

Norway

20.4

1.00

8.55

31        28

  3.82     0.35

10.00

73

5.3

2.6

X

722.4

28)

Mexico

  0.7

3.00

8.55

24          8

  1.13     0.06

23.60

201

4.4

6.4

0.33

714.7

29)

Belgium

12.9

2.00

10.41

30        22

  5.01     0.25

10.80

97

4.1

3.1

X

697.4

30)

Austria

  3.0

3.00

12.40

47        45

  3.01     0.49

11.00

64

X

3.2

X

696.2

31)

Italy

17.1

3.00

9.72

32        19

  4.60     0.51

   9.80

109

4.4

3.0

0.27

690.0

32)

Finland

14.4

1.00

13.10

28        22

  2.49     0.19

15.70

59

5.6

3.7

1.85

689.3

33)

Netherlands

12.6

2.00

9.75

31        26

  5.24     0.40

    X

87

6.8

2.0

X

664.8

34)

Turkey

17.0

1.00

3.02

47        15

    X             X

16.10

174

3.7

1.5

0.37

575.4

35)

Japan

17.3

1.00

7.79

42        12

  0.50     0.30

   3.10

55

5.7

2.1

X

511.0

 

(Only nations with proven economic progress or potential have been included in this listing. Each had to provide rankings for at least seven of the ten categories listed.)

 

                                                                                                SOURCES

Abortion          % Pregnancies Ending in Abortion

AIDS                 Adult prevalence rate (CIA factbook)

Alcohol            Per capita consumption (WHO 2008)

Smoking          Daily smokers (male/female) WHO, World Health Statistics 2012

Drug Use         Percentage of people who have ever used marijuana / amphetamines. OECD 1998-9

Obesity            Percentage of adults having a Body Mass Index (BMI) greater to or equal to 30.0. (CIA)

Prisoners         Prisoners per 100,000 (prisonstudies.org) /  Female percentage (nationmaster)

Suicide             Per 100,000 population (WHO databank, National Bureaus of Statistics 1994-5)

Divorce            Divorces per 1,000 population (nationmaster)

 

Red Figures     Indicates highest/worst incidence of viciousness in the allotted category

Gold Figures   Indicates lowest/best incidence of viciousness in the allotted category

 

 

 

 

 

THE DON JONES INDEX

 

CHART of CATEGORIES w/ VALUE ADDED to EQUAL BASELINE of 15,000.00

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


See a further explanation of categories here

Simply recording gains or losses is deceptive, because some of the indices here represent GOOD things (like incomes and life expectancy) while others represent BAD things (unemployment, terror).  So, increases in good things and decreases in bad things are considered GOOD (and are depicted in GREEN) – decreases in good things and increases in the bad are considered BAD (and are depicted in RED). 

The sum of good things, less the sum of bad things, equals the week’s gain (or loss) to Don Jones.

 

ECONOMIC FACTORS (60%)

  Changes/adjustments from old template…

DON JONES’ PERSONAL ECONOMIC INDEX  (45% of total Index points)

 

INCOME

(24%)

BASE 6/27/13

RECKONINGS

   LAST       CHANGE        NEXT

DON           7/9/14

DON           7/16/14

OUR SOURCE(S) and COMMENTS 

Equality category moved to L&J and downgraded.  See (1) below.

Wages (hourly, p/c.)

10%

1500 points

7/9/14

nd

7/23/14

1508.09

1508.09

 http://www.tradingeconomics.com/united-states/wages   10.28 nd

 

Median Income

4%

600

7/16/14

+0.04%

7/23/14

600.25

600.48

http://www.usdebtclock.org/ 28,374

New category replacing U.S. entry.  See (2) below.

Unemployment % (a)

4%

600

7/9/14

nd

7/23/14

766.62

766.62

http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000   6.1 nd

 

Official #   (b)

2%

300

7/16/14

-0.37%

7/23/14

356.16

357.47

http://www.usdebtclock.org/            9627 9787 9751

 

Unofficial #   (b)

2%

300

7/16/14

+0.33%

7/23/14

369.05

370.27

http://www.usdebtclock.org/             18758 18818 18756

 

Workforce Participatn. Number & percntg.  (c)

2%

300

7/4/12

nc

7/23/14

295.12

295.12

   Americans in workforce (m.) –146.278 146.319

       Not  92.184      Total  229,878  238,462 238,530

   http://www.usdebtclock.org/   61.82  61.34 nc

New category.  See (3) below.

                    (a)     As compiled monthly by the Bureau of Labor Statistics – value adjusted upwards by 25%

                          (b)     As compiled weekly by usdebtclock.org

                          (c)     As compiled weekly by DJI from usdebtclock tally of Americans in workforce divided by same plus Americans not in workforce.

                                7/4/2012: 142.109 (M) in workforce, 87.769 not for 61.82%

                                7/2/2014: 145.987 in, 92,211 out for 61.29%

                    (d)     Reflecting base period percentage of 61.82% for 7/4/12.  A statistical anomaly results… 

 

 

 

 

OUTGO

15%

 

 

 

 

 

 

     Total Inflation             

9%

1350

7/9/14

nd

Aug. 2014

1322.30

1322.30

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm  +0.4 (may)

nd

Food*

2%

300

7/9/14

nd

Aug. 2014

291.83

291.83

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm    +0.5 nd

 

Gas

2%

300

7/9/14

nd

Aug. 2014

301.30

301.30

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm   +0.7 nd

 

 

Medical Costs

2%

300

7/9/14

nd

Aug. 2014

292.87

292.87

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

Moved up to here from Health (other) in L&J.

 

 

 

 

 

WEALTH

6%

 

 Dow Jones 

2

300

7/16/14

+0.90%

7/23/14

317.00

319.85

Dow Jones index    17,138.20

 

Home Valuations          

2

300

7/9/14

sales nc  price nc

7/22/14

179.05  204.62

179.05  204.62

http://www.realtor.org/topics/existing-home-sales  4.89 nd

http://www.realtor.org/research-and-statistics  213.4

 

    Debt (Personal)   

2

300

7/16/14

+0.13%

6/18/14

287.24

286.86

http://www.usdebtclock.org/       51646 51650 51719

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UNITED STATES ECONOMIC INDEX  (15% of total Index points)

Annual & cumulative categories merged.  (4)

NATIONAL

10%

 

Revenues (tril.) (e)

2%

300

7/16/14

-0.14%

7/23/14

330.18

330.63

http://www.usdebtclock.org/        2.940

Revenues & expenditures weight doubled.  See (5).

Expenditure  (tl.) (e)

2%

300

7/16/14

+0.06%

7/23/14

300.90

300.72

http://www.usdebtclock.org/        3.517

BLS findings deleted for lack of updates.  See (6).

 U.S. Natl. Debt  (e)

3%

450

7/16/14

+0.03%

7/23/14

425.74

425.59

http://www.usdebtclock.org/      17,593

 

Total Debt  (tl.) (e)

3%

450

7/16/14

+0.02%

7/23/14

431.33

431.25

http://www.usdebtclock.org/      61.532

 

Us total debt includes household, business, state and local government, financial institutions and the Federal Government (source – Federal reserve)

                    (e)     As compiled by usdebtclock.org from same date, one year previous.  Slight anomaly will be caused. 1225

 

GLOBAL

5%

 

Foreign Debt (tril.)

2%

300

7/16/14

+0.03%

7/23/14

312.03  

312.13  

http://www.usdebtclock.org/      5.989

Debt is public obligations to foreign nations.  See (7)

Exports (bil)

1%

150

7/9/14

nd

7/23/14

157.96

157.96

http://www.census.gov/foreign-     trade/statistics/highlights/congressional.html    193.3 195.5 nd

 

Imports  (bil)

1%

150

7/9/14

nd

7/23/14

141.57

141.57

http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/highlights/congressional.html     240.6 239.8

 

Trade Deficit (bil)

1%

150

7/9/14

nd

7/23/14

141.20

141.20

http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/highlights/congressional.html    47.2 44.4

Deficit is shortfall of public or private sector.  See (8).

 

 

 

 

SOCIAL FACTORS (40%)

 

LIBERTY and SECURITY INDEX           (15%)

Combines and replaces Health, Security & Liberty categories.  See (9).

ACTS of MAN

9%

Criteria (above) is whether direct human cause exists.

World Peace

3%

450

7/16/14

-0.5%

7/23/14

408.22

406.18

Bad news – Gaza fighting continues.  Good news – each side getting what it wants… military “victories” for Israelis, martyrs for Hamas

Value enhanced due to events in Iraq and Ukraine

Terrorism

2%

300

7/16/14

-0.1%

7/23/14

284.89

284.61

All the fear and the chatter… no payoff.  Don Jones seems disappointed.  All that standing in line and being groped for… nothing?

 

Freedom (f)

2%

300

7/16/14

nc

As occurs

295.34

295.34

No significant change… except for children caught in the Syrian, Palestinian and Iraqi crossfires  215

 

Corruption

1%

150

7/16/14

+0.3%

As occurs

167.22

166.72

Finally something pushes VA scandals from the headlines.  Unfortunately, it’s the Center for Disease Control.  Scary….

 

Crime Rates

1%

150

2013

nd

unknown

149.27

149.27

  nd

Value downgraded due to infrequent reporting.  (10)

 

 

 

 

ACTS of GOD

6%

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

 

Environment

3%

450

7/16/14

+0. 1%

7/23/14

434.74

435.17

   Climate change brings another polar vortex East of the Rockies.  Which is OK.  In July.

 

Natural Disasters      

3%

450

7/16/14

+0. 1%

7/23/14

400.45

400.05

   Too much rain in the Midwest, too little in the West.  Next… water rationing, ruined crops and the $3 head of lettuce.

Value enhanced because… well… there’s more of em.

 

LIFESTYLE and JUSTICE INDEX        (13%)

See (11).

Education       

4%

600

2010

nd

Yearly

594

594

   n/d

Devalued from full Index due to infrequent updates.

Equality

4%

600

9/10/13

nd

?

711.55

711.55

http://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?DataSetCode=IDD  .038 nd

Relocated from economy.  Anecdotal evidence will now be allowed.

Health (Life Exp.)

2%

300

2012

nd

unknown

292.24

292.24

No data – nor should there be any for at least a year after America’s mediocre performance in the WHOlympics

Devalued from full index due to lack of updates & relocation of environment & disasters.  Anecdotal evidence now allowed.

Health (Other)

2%

300

 

 

 

300.00

300.00

 

Justice

1%

150

5/21/14

nd

unknown

156.54

156.54

  nd

Absorbs prison population

 

 

 

MISCELLANEOUS and TRANSIENT INDEX        (13%)

See (12)

All transient incidents

10%

1000

7/16/14

+0. 1%

7/23/14

982.89

983.87

A lot of near misses… Israeli rockets shot down, airplanes making (safe) emergency landings.  For Russian subway riders and MidEast civilians – not so good.

Other events with at least some news value.

 

  Misc. cultural foibles      

3%

300

7/16/14

+0. 1%

7/23/14

300.90

301.20

    Some celebrities won awards, some businessmen made money.  No new scandals (except in D.C.) so the media recycled the old.

Trivial and/or sensational ephemera as, nonetheless, worms its way into the group mind.

                   

 

 

SUMMARY:

The Don Jones Index for the week of July 9th through July 15th was UP 2.96 points.

The Don Jones Index is sponsored by the Coalition for a New Consensus: retired Congressman and Independent Presidential candidate Jack “Catfish” Parnell, Chairman; Brian Doohan, Administrator/Editor.  The CNC denies, emphatically, allegations that the organization, as well as its officers (including former Congressman Parnell, environmentalist/America Firster Austin Tillerman and cosmetics CEO Rayna Finch) and references to Parnell’s works, “Entropy and Renaissance” and “The Coming Kill-off” are fictitious or mere pawns in the e-serial “Black Helicopters” - and promise swift, effective legal action against all parties promulgating this and other such slanders.

 

Comments, complaints, donations (especially SUPERPAC donations):  feedme@generisis.com

 

 

NOTES on CHANGES in CATEGORIZATION and VALUATION within the DON JONES INDEX…

1)      Everybody likes to talk about equality, but few people (or organizations) ever measure it… and most of those that do jiggle the numbers to support their own partisan viewpoints.  The sober and persnickety OECD does conduct comprehensive surveys… but only every five years or so.  Consequently, this Index is going to take a hard look at embedded inferences in other reports, legislation and even popular controversies in order to become more anecdotal, less scientific… and a whole lot more volatile.

2)      debtclock.org has a weekly roundup of U.S. median income that differs markedly from the University of New Mexico figures (probably as a result of who and who is not counted) but, as UNM  compiles its report only every year or so, we’re going with debtclock (which counts all wage earners) on this one, too.  Their median income (adjusted for inflation) for 2000 was $28,482.

3)      Another new category based on debtclock comparisons of Americans in and out of the labor force.  Listing represents the percentage of those employed or looking for jobs divided by the total.  That this percentage is dropping has been exploited by liberals to condemn the new world order of disappearing jobs, and by conservatives as indicating that more and more of us are becoming “welfare queens” who would reject work, even if it were available, as less rewarding than a grab-bag of government goodies.  Whatever the cause… and whether the solution is to increase the minimum wage or dis-extend unemployment benefits and start kicking behinds off the food stamps… the Don Jones Index finds this steady appreciation of America’s dropouts to be troubling, to say the least.  Which side are you on?

4)      Frankly, our old system didn’t make a lot of sense… and readers told us so.  Now, we are re-aligning our national categories with much more emphasis on differentiating factors that are the province of government from those in which government may play its part, but in conjunction with American industries and consumer preferences.  (We have refrained from assuming moral stances on import/export issues… hey!... if we can mitigate our balance of trade issues with China by force-feeding them a diet of Transformers, Masters of the Universe and Seth Rogan comedies, more power to us!)

5)      The DJI has chosen to increase the value of government revenues (i.e. taxes… for the purpose of this category, a good thing, though some may disagree) and expenditures (including roads, bridges, education, defense and, also, a whole lotta pork) not because the value of these categories is unambiguous, but because Don Jones understands that debt is like a house of cards… you can keep piling one atop the other for a while but, eventually, the whole shebang collapses.

6)      Bureau of Labor Statistics reports on consumer expenditures occurred, at best, quarterly.  Even if the weekly debtclock.org figures are projections, they give a fairer and more accurate indication of consumption trends as they exist week to week.

7)      Foreign debt is the accumulated difference between what we pay for our imports and what we receive for our exports.  Once upon a time we were creditors as opposed to debtors, but two issues… the rise in oil prices that began in the 1970’s and 80’s resulted in our owing money to the Saudis, Iraqis, Kuwaitis and other OPEC nations and the corporate-planned government-facilitated outsourcing of manufacturing has kept us in hock to China, Japan and other nations of the Far East… changed everything.  Our creditors have a problem, unlike the likes of Sammy the Bull and that sort, they cannot threaten us militarily, so as long as we dutifully tally up our interest charges and add them to the tab, they go along to get along until some day, somehow, they don’t.  Then, we’re Greece… or Detroit.

8)      Foreign deficits, on the other hand, are like the above but bounded in time… in the case of census figures, one month.  Thus, our debt totals about ten years worth of deficits at the present rate… to level the playing field, we would have to export more than we import at about the same rate as we do the reverse now, and do it for ten years.  What do we have to sell to the rest of the world?  Arms, food and pornography.  Maybe, in a little while, some frackin’ oil.

9)      Health and education moved to Lifestyle & Justice. 

10)      Crime rates and Freedom devalued due to ambiguity and infrequent release of statistics.

11)      Category will see substantially more subjective and anecdotal impact owing to infrequency of objective studies.

12)      Numerous correspondents complained that seemingly trivial matters were given consideration; regardless of their impact on the national psychology.  But Don Jones can’t help himself.  He may prefer good ol’ American football (or gridiron, as some call it), but when we lost the World Cup to the frackin’ Belgians, he was depressed.  A day may come when Don and Dawn will blow off all the chaff as comprises our American culture and focus only on hard and pertinent data.  But what a boring, arrogant couple they’d be!