Trump’s tax plan will take us off a leisurely stroll on the road to Brazil and put us on high speed rail straight to Buenos Aires. And that is not acceptable to me. 

Before I became single parent, and when I understood mainstream economic theory, policy models declared the following:
1.  A market based economy could effectively function with a defict at 2 to 2.5% of GDP.
2.  Any more than that and the economy would sustain long term and permanant structural damage.
3.  The effects of the long term and permanent structural damage would include the following:
a.  Economic displacement.

b.  Erosion of infrastructure.

c.  Increased and more severe business cycles.

d.  Permanent decline of the middle class.

e.  Increased reliance on deficit spending.
When Shrub became President, I became increasingly despondent.  As we cut taxes, initiated a two front war, and entered the financial crisis, the deficit, as a percentage of GDP, grew from a budget surplus, to 2, 5, and 10% of GDP. 
Last year the deficit took 3% of GDP, near the top of a business cycle, and above the magic 2.5%.  
The upshot, based on my understanding of economics, is that we continue to cause long structural and permanent damage to the economy.
From the standpoint of economic policy, one reason that I was not overly enthused about the 2016 election is that I did not think it would make much difference as to who was elected President.  That is, we would be on our way to becoming a third world country, regardless of who won.
I do not relish the idea of living in a third world country.  Given my limited understanding about economics, I see no way of avoiding it.  
If our country is going to become a third world nation, I want it to be as slowly as possible. Like it or not, data indicates the economy has peaked and is slowing.  I blieve will see 0 growth by August or September.
My hunch is that Trump’s tax plan is going to blow up the deficit to an even greater percentage of GDP than during Shrub’s years in office.  The best case scenario is that we bandage the unsustainable for a few years.  The more likely scenario I think is that we suffer negative growth, with high interest, and high inflation.  

In short Trump’s tax plan will take us off a leisurely stroll on the road to Brazil and put us on high speed rail to Buenos Aires.  And that is not acceptable to me.  Who sees a way out of this insidious circle?

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RIP: The US Senate Is Dead.  

On April 6, 2017, the US Senate died.  In 2013, retired US Senator Harry Reid (D, NV) and the Democrats critically wounded the body, with the weakened filibuster. Today, the actions of Senator Mitch McConnell (R, KY) and the Republicans killed it when they eliminated the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees. The Democrats and Republicans have left us with us tyranny of the majority, nothing to force compromise, and the materials to change a Republic into a Dictatorship.

Scholars and commentators agree on one thing: US Senate Leadership, on both sides of the aisle, has been lacking since Robert Dole (R, KS) left in 1996. Over the coming years, historians will likely look back on this day and ask the following question: How could Webster, Clay, Calhoun, Russell, Johnson, Dirksen, Baker, Dole, and Mitchell overcome the War of 1812, Slavery, the Civil War, Reconstruction, the Great Depression, Internment, Vietnam, Watergate, and Iran Contra, and pass legislation/confirm appointments with the filibuster, while Reid and McConnell were unable to do the same in this second decade of the 21st Century.  These historians shall find no satisfying answers.

Some practitioners of politics posit that Reid and McConnell faced unprecedented opposition to justify the killing. These doctors sight blockage of Court appointments in their diagnosis. The ghosts of Johnson, Parks, and King,  who broke a 90 plus year filibuster with the passage of the 1957 and 1964 Civil Rights Acts, begged to differ.

Today, Reid, McConnell, and the rest have proven the theory of the late Barry Goldwater (R, AZ). We have elected people to the US Senate who know a little bit about everything, and nothing about anything. They understand just enough to appear on TV, make headlines, and leave ruins in their wakes.

Rest in Peace US Senate, this 6th Day of April 2017.

Do You Need Business Consulting Products and Services?

You are starting a new business, you want some help organizing it, where do you go?  You are already in business for a couple of years, you require capital to expand, what is your best lending source? You are retiring, you want to sell  or wind down your business, what do you do?

You ask these questions because you need business consulting.  

That means you hire someone to help you obtain an EIN number and prepare corporate papers.  Or, you look for a company that gives you the ability to boost your business profile by writing a presentable business plan, customizing your website, shoring up your credit profile, determine your capital needs, and/or streamline your contracts, accounts receivable, and collections. Or you find somebody to help you assign your assets, sell your business whole, or jnust shut the doors.

You have analyzed yourself and your business.  You have decided whether you want to do the work yourself or you want somebody to do the wirk for you.  You posses a good idea of the products you want.  From whom do you buy the products?

You want to buy products from a company whose employees are experienced in the consulting industry.  You want a company that gives you samples of their work.  You want a company that is transparent with the work they are fulfilling for you.  You want a company that sells you the prodcuts you need.  You want the best product for the best price. You are not looking for something for free.

You certainly know what you don’t want. You don’t want to hook up with a scam. You are trying to grow your business, not destroy it.  You need to figure out if the company is legitimate or not.  

You already know the questions to ask.  Are you being promised the moon or a real tangible product?  Are you given a time frame for fulfillment?  Are you told you need products you already own?  Are you are asked to pay everything up front before you see anything?  Do you have time to read the contract?

How do you find this business consulting company?  You search the web, you read testimonials, you call, you ask questions, and you walk away if you must.

You will find the right business consulting product from the right person.  We are out there.  I promise.

Testosterone, Supplements, and Safety

The National Institute of Health recently conducted a study on testosterone therapy.  It determined what Clinicians and Doctors have said for years:  Using testosterone could increase risk of coronary disease and diabetes.  Even more dangerous may be the risk posed by testosterone precursor supplements.

Testosterone precurcursor supplements, more commonly known as “andro,” are rampant.  We hear, read, and see advertisements, and testimonials bout these supplements from sports radio, fitness magazines, infomercials and the like.  Andro is really not a new product. It has existed in previous guises and formulations since the 1990s.

During the 1990s, Mark McGuire, of the St. Louis Cardinals, famously took andro when he won the home run race.  At the time, many were divided as to the relative merits of Andro.  Over the next few years, through well reviewed publications, including “Juicing the Game” by Howard Bryant, we have learned the following: 

 First,  andro, used alone, without medical testosterone treatments, has little to no value. 

Second, when andro is used in conjunction with medical testosterone treatments, may spike the effects of such treatments.

Third, in the sports world, andro is often a gateway to the legal and illegal use of testosterone.

Fourth, andro has been successfully used as a masking agent to disquise the illegal use of testosterone.

Fifth, and most important to our health, previous incarnations of andro have negatively impacted kidney function, aggravated dehydration, with resulting deaths.  Accordingly, the FDA eventually banned its sale.

How soon we forget.  Now, a new andro is back and more popular than ever.  What is a prudent course of action if we are considering trying the new andro?

The PBS program, Frontline, has televised an episode enitled “Supplements and Safety.”  The broadcast gave some good guide posts that the most responsible members of the supplement community have followed for years:

1.   If you are under 18, do not buy or consume any  supplements, unless your medical doctor says otherwise.

2. If you are over 18, do not consume andro and other supplements, unless your medical doctor recommends or approves the consumption.

3.  Buy andro and other supplemmanufactured in FDA inspected labs and GMP approved facilities.

4.  Buy andro and other supplements that are supported by clinical studies.

5.  Buy andro and other supplements from suppliers/manufacturers who have clean records with the FDA.

6.  Buy andro and other supplements from companies that demonstrate transparency.

The federal government does not regulate supplements as a drug.  There is no guarantee of success or safety if you consume andro or any supplements. Consuming these products is a risk.  However, for adults who want to try them, the best advice is to exercise common sense, perform do diligence, and always consult your medical doctor. 

Donald Trump, Tough Guy, From The Mean Streets of Jamaica Estates

Donald Trump appears to think of himself as a tiugh guy from Queens.  He’s got the attitude, he’s got the crazy, and he’s got the accent (He’s got that down cold).  However, for those not from the Tri State Area, all of Queens is not the same. 

 I know this first hand.  I’n from nearby, in the Town of Oyster Bay, and my Coffee House Communist cousin, who I love with all my heart, grew up in Jamaica Estates and went to Kews Forest private day school, just like the Orange Ogre.

From the 50s to the 80s, likening Jamaica Estates to Queens is as ridiculous as likening Grosse Pointe to Detroit.  Jamaica Estates is as Lilly White as it gets.  At the time, it was certainly wealthier than Sea Cliff and Glen Head, where I grew up.  And hardly anymore dangerous.  Wealthy, manicured, and safe.

So what’s Trump’s story?  Why all the bluster, street talk, and bravado.  For those of you who know people like Trump, me, and my cousin (not so much actually – he is far more civilized), and others from the Bridge and Tunnel Crowd, attitude makes up for what many us lack as a result of our (lack of) proximity to The City, even if t hurts us Hence, the phenomena of Chris Christie, a man from a nice middle class family in New Jersey, who often sounds, and, unfortunately, in some ways, acts like Tony Soprano.

Are we real tough guys?  Well, life certainly makes everyone, regardless of where they are from, harder and you have to be somewhat hardened to succeed..  However, people like me, Trump, and my cousin didn’t dig ourselves out from under because life required bus to steal, play hooky, or beat people up. 

 Those of who regularly broke the rules did so mostly because they were rich enough to get away wih it without consequence, were role playing, and/or trying to impress others with how street they were.  Life certainly didn’t require it, and some of us even grew out of it, along with the accent, too.

Unfortunately for all of us, our President has never grown out of these worst manifestations of Bridge and Tunnel Crowd insecurity.  He is still that same rich, Kews Forest student, trying to prove his imagined bona fides to the crowd.  And, we are all paying the price.

Why I Think An Independent Commission Must Investigate The Allegations Of Trump’s Connections To Russia

This is what I think. It is certainly not what I know. I have no inside information. Just strong hunches. I hope I am wrong:
1. The $300 plus million that Trump personally owes Deutsche Bank is from Russia. Trump received the money through the $10 billlion Russian money laundering scheme, for which Deutsche Bank has been fined $630 million dollars. Please note, Deutsche Bank has forgiven Trump’s debt service payments on numerous occasons.

2. Trump is on the Russian side of the Clinton-Guistra-Russian Public Engergy Company Uraniam Deal. The Russians paid Slick Willy almost $1,000,000.00 to give a speach just before Hillary voted to allow the public Russian Energy Company to buy Guistra’s firm, and gain control of approximately 40% of the US Uranium supply. Thereafter, the Obama Administration restricted Russia’s ability to harvest the Uranium, imposed further sanctions on Russia, and Russia and Trump got pissed, which was followed by the Clintons’ falling out with the Trumps.

3. Because Trump is on the hook to Russia to keep himself afloat, and, because he and the Russians perceive themselves as being screwed by Billary, Trump ran for President on the promise of reducing sanctions against Russia with active support from Russia.

4. Sessions, Flynn, and Tillerson (maybe others) signed on with Trump because Trump promised he would remove sanctions against Russia once in office and they wanted to make money off of oil deals.

5. The investment bankers in Trump’s administration signed on because Trump owed those banks favors for forgiving all his debt.

6. After Trump was elected, he fired Yates, not because of the travel ban, but because Yates briefed him about Flynn’s compromising activities with Russia. I believe Trump used the travel ban as a pretext.

7. I do not give a damn about golden showers, hookers, and drugs I do not believe that Russian interference determined the outcome of the election. I do not yet hold a belief as to whether or not Trump coordinated with Russia on interference in the election.

8. However, I believe that the Russian private and public interests own our President and a large chunk of his cabinet.

9. I have thought this since the media revealed that McCain transported the dossier from the (former) MI6 Agent to the Intelligence agencies.

10. I want an independent commission to investigate all these issues and subpoena Trump’s taxes and bank records to get to the bottom of my concerns.

11. Whatevere else, I do care about issues regarding national security and national sovereignty. If I am right, Trump is undermining our security and sovereignty. I would still like to believe that the issues of national security and sovereignty are non partisan issues.

12. If everything is investigated, and I am wrong, I will be the first to say so. I would rather be right , wrong, or in between on an issue than be correct.

NFL Week 16 Predictions Sure To Go Wrong

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After two weeks off, I’m back on the horse, and making my NFL picks for Week 15:

1.  Titans v. Jaguars:  Jaguars:  Who cares.

2.  Eagles v. Redskins:  Eagles:  I would love an upset.

3.  Chargers v. 49ers:  Chargers:  Time for their late season push.

4.  Lions v. Bears:  Lions:  The Bears are lost and the Lions have everything to play for.  On the other hand, that hasn’t stopped the Lions from losing before.

5.  Vikings v. Dolphins:  Dolphins:  The Fish are at home and they’re more experienced.  Next year Vikings.

6.  Ravens v. Texans:  Ravens:  They will win the AFC North.

7.  Browns v. Panthers:  Panthers:  The Derek Anderson revenge bowl.

8.  Falcons v. Saints:  The Saints will win out and win the division.

9.  Packers v. Buccaneers:  Packers:  Rodgers will not lose two in a row.

10.  Chiefs v. Steelers:  Steelers:  The weather will expose Alex Smith.

11.  Patriots v. Jets:  Patriots:  Why are the they playing this game?

12.  Giants v. Rams:  Giants:  This game is a pick’em.  I’d like to see Coughlin goes out with respectability.  However, I think Fisher is the most underrated coach in the NFL.

13.  Bills v. Raiders:  Bills:  Carr is better than Orton, but the Bills are better all around and still in the playoff hunt.

14.  Colts v. Cowboys:  Cowboys:  I am completely unsure of this pick.  That being said, the Cowboys have more to play for.

15.  Seahawks v. Cardinals:  Seahawks:  The Cardinals have suffered too many injuries too late in the season.

16.  Broncos v. Bengals:  Broncos:  I hope I am wrong on this one.

 

NFL Week 15 Power Rankings

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1. Packers:  This week the Packers are the best team in the NFL.

2. Patriots:  Without doubt, the Patriots are the best team in the AFC.

3.  Seattle:  Look out Green Bay.

4.  Broncos:  Running game:  Good.  Passing game:  PFM has hit the wall

4.  Seattle:  They’re the second best team in the NFC.

5.  Colts:  The the third best team in the AFC East.

6.  Chargers:  Look out Broncos.  Sunday’s game was a war.

7.  Eagles:  The third best team in the NFC.

8.   Lions:  Another impressive win.

9.  Cowboys:  A big win over a floundering Bears team.  Romo has ten days between games.  That means ten more days for him to get healthy for their most important game of the season.

10.  Cardinals:  Have they stopped the bleeding.

11.  Ravens:  A gritty win.

12.  Steelers:  A statement win.

13.  Bengals:  I fully expect to reverse numbers 11 through 13 by next week.

14.  Chiefs:  See last week.

15.  Miami:  A tough showing against a strong Ravens team.

16.  Bills:  They played hard the whole game.

17.  Browns:  It’s Jonny Football!

18.  Rams:  A quarterback and city away from being a top team.

19.  Vikings:  All they neeed is seasoning.

19.  Bears:  A flawed, self destructive, and talented team.

20. 49ers:  Harbaugh is mailing it in.

21.  The wheels have fallen off the bus.  Is Captain Comeback coming home to Ann Arbor?  We can only hope (or hope not).

22.  Texans:  Mediocrity at its best.

23.  Falcons:  Played phenomenally in a dramatic loss at Green Bay.  The NFC South is their’s to lose.

24.  Saints:  The most undisciplined talented team in the NFL.  Even more so than the Bears.

25.  Panthers: Cam fractures his back in a car accident.  So do the Panthers.

26.  Buccaneers:  Playing hard.

27.  Giants:  Coughlin has stopped the bleading.

28.  Jaguars:  Things in this life change very slowly, if they ever change at all.

29.  Titans:  No longer an enigma.

The terrible three:

30.  Raiders:  Maybe next year.

31.  Jets:  Just good enough to get beat.

32.  Redskins:  Change owners, change the name, and start over.

NFL Week 14 Power Rankings

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1. Packers:  The rankings are finally making sense.

2. Patriots:  If the Patriots had won, I would have ranked them in the top spot.

3.  Broncos:  Showing signs of a second act with the running game.

4.  Seattle:  They’re the second best team in the NFC.

5.  Chargers:  Look out Broncos.

6.  Eagles:  The third best team in the NFC.

7.  Colts:  The fourth best team in the AFC.

8.  Cowboys:  2 games in less than a week was too many for Romo.  They get a mulligan for the loss.

9.  Lions:  An impressive win over a beaten up, but surprisingly disciplined Bears team.

10.  Cardinals:  This is sad.  By season’s end, they’ll be out of the top 15.

11.  Bengals:  They’ve won three in a row and control the AFC North again.

12.  Ravens:  An ugly loss.

13.  Steelers:  An uglier loss.

14.  Chiefs:  Every week exposes more of their limitations.

15.  Miami:  Still pushing for the wild card.

16.  Browns:  Cinderella finally lost her glass slipper.

17.  Bills:  Still pushing for respectability.

18.  49ers:  The wheels have fallen off the bus.  Is Captain Comeback coming home to Ann Arbor?  We can only hope (or hope not).

19.  Vikings:  A very fine young team.

20.  Rams:  I bet Jeff Fischer really wants to go to back to LA and a quarterback away from being a playoff team.

21.  Bears:   Playoff hopes are done, but the Quarterback Whisperer might still be able to hold onto his job.

22.  Texans:  Welcome back, Fool’s Gold, I mean Ryan Fitzpatrick.

23.  Saints:  Who’s worse?  The Saints or the Falcons?  After last week, my guess is the Falcons.

24.  Falcons:  Sorry, Matty Ice.

25.  Panthers:  It’s unbelievable they’re not the worst team in the division.

26.  Titans:  Still an enigma.

27.  Buccaneers:  Lovie is pulling the crew together.

28. Redskins:  Colt McCoy:  Not so bad.  Rest of the team:  Not so good.

29. Jaguars:  This hurts.

30.  Giants:  Tom Coughlin went down in flames in Jacksonville.  They’ll tell you they’ve never had a better coach.

31.  Jets:  iHere’s to you, Rex.

32.  Raiders:  The ultimate spectacle.

NFL Week 13 Predictions That Sure Went Wrong

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1.  Bears v. Lions:  Lions:  W:  Wasn’t even close.

2.  Eagles v. Cowboys:  Cowboys:  L:  In the words a former employer, JXSXS CXRXSX, I sure went down FXCXIXNX TXIXEX on that UXGXY BXTXH.

3.  Seahawks v. 49ers:  Seahawks:  W:  Not even close.

4.  Browns v. Bills:  Bills: W.  Cinderella finally lost her glass slipper.

5.  Chargers v. Ravens: Ravens:  L:  I still think the Ravens will win the NFC North.

6.  Panthers v. Vikings:  Vikings: W:  Look out NFC North… The Vikings are not a gimme for anyone.

7.  Bengals v. Buccaneers:  Bengals:  W:  At least Dalton did not steal defeat from the jaws of victory.

8.  Titans v. Texans:  Texans:  W:  Fool’s gold came through.

9.  Redskins v. Colts:  Colts:  W:  At list McCoy plaid well.

10.  Giants v. Jaguars:  Giants:  L:  Hell freezes over.

11.  Steelers v. Saints:  Steelers:  L:  Hell is hosting the Winter Olympics.

12.  Raiders v. Rams:  Rams:  W:  I’m not offended by the Rams.

13.  Cardinals v. Falcons:  Falcons:  W:  Okay, the Saints are as bad as the Falcons.

14.   Patriots v. Packers:  Packers:  W:  Close.

15.  Broncos v. Chiefs:  Broncos:  W:  The Chiefs are outgunned by the Broncos.

16.  Dolphins v. Jets:  Dolphins:  W:  Too close for comfort.

This week:  12 wins, 4 losses.

Season: 120 wins, 54 losses.