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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Deadly Flue Germs?

No kidding, there's a headline up at Bloomberg that catches the eye:

Deadly flue germs? Why do research on them? Just keep your head out of the chimney and all will be well.

But then in the article they talk about bird flu and not chimney sweeps. Someone's confused.

My sixth-grade teacher is weeping in frustration in her grave. She always warned us it could come to this, and her dark prognostications about the decline of literacy have apparently been fulfilled.

Okay, okay, I made coffee and am having at it. Forget the deadly flue germs. Maybe they will fix the headline.

China's manufacturing PMI contracted again. Inventories rose. This month, both input and output prices fell. Stimulus is lurking just around the next chimney bend, along with coughing chickens. Don't kiss the rooster! More pertinently, the HSBC chirpy commentary about how nothing is really wrong has been omitted again this month in favor of a plea for fiscal and monetary relief. This probably begins the end of the long global inflationary surge. Money was tight in China yesterday. They are going to have trouble fluffing up this bubble.

Japan says everything's really all right, but of course it isn't. China's subdued demand comes up. I think Japan should improve a bit as the Thai shock wears off. Over the longer run, their fiscal problems are gaining on them. I don't think this will really happen. We are playing global fiscal hopscotch. After Europe, Japan. After Japan, the US. It looks like Noda is going to be another short-term PM.

I won't really know what I think about Asia's prospects next year before I see Singapore GDP, which is due out next week, I think. I have it stuck in my head that Indonesia and Malaysia and Thailand are picking up some, and that this should carry the region as a whole through in moderate growth. But the Thai floods are a threat to that belief, and fiscal stability and balance for these nations is generally a bit dicey. It will show up in Singapore either way.

Russia is seeing a little more slack but on the whole is still doing well. The average people aren't, though. I never know what to do with Russia. In trade it is mostly European, but in outlook and response it is mostly Asian.

PS: India, tides, Speedos. I am shocked, shocked, shocked. There was gambling going on? Stacked decks? Shaved equity? Who'd a thunk?



"Deadly flue germs? Why do research on them? Just keep your head out of the chimney and all will be well."

I'm glad you managed to type this before January 1st.

It may have won you the Best Snark of 2011 Award and I want to make sure I start 2012 with a fighting chance, lol.

The Deathly Flue Soundtrack
Your going to love this yuan. Their hallawing out the chimney in honor of Hairy Potter!

Sorry. Just trying to get a Triple Lindy out of your sixth-grade teacher. ;)
Mark - I have no hope of ever even kissing the toes of your level of snark. Not in this year, not in 2012, not in any year.

But it is a snark-rich environment. There is nothing like watching politicians gravely vow to defend SS while they pass laws to cut its revenue stream to bring out the astounded, appalled snarkiness in an individual.
PS: Back To School has proven as prophetic as my sixth grade teacher in its commentary on what academic economics has become - a bunch of snobs with their noses up each other's butts, demanding the rest of us enjoy the scent of - success???.

Sorry, every once in a while I lapse into army talk.
My sarcasm dial goes to 15, and I can't keep up with General Mark Snark either. You've got a talent for it, Mark, truly you do.

Unfortunately, it's not as great as the ability of our elites to inspire such snark. Nothing quite like having an unlimited feedstock of new idiocy to manufacture snark out of!
Who Struck John,

"Nothing quite like having an unlimited feedstock of new idiocy to manufacture snark out of!"

I keep sanitizer on call and wash my hands often. My phone which is placed on every hard surface (desk, bar, table, sink, etc...) is covered by a bacterminator.com antibacterial cover so that's not picking up any germs either. I'm all good!
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