September 23rd, 2015

Decluttering Continues

Before Waste Management switched to a recycling bin with a lid, we asked for a larger recycling container than the open bins we had at the time. They just gave us one that was exactly like the trash bin, but with a huge sticker on the top saying recycling. Anyway, the switch to a recycle bin happened, leaving us with the open bins and the second large bin with the sticker just taking up a lot of space in the garage.

R. finally called WM and asked them to pick it up. This morning, a Ryder truck came by and picked up the large bin and the open bins that R. had stacked on top along with a note saying please take these too if you can.

The garage is now so spacious! A. is saying that there is space for new stuff (especially since the kick scooters are out of the way). I'm threatening to buy an electric motorcycle (I won't, actually, because I can read health statistics and I am paranoid. Also, my death wish these days is weak and my thrill seeking has found entirely other outlets. Yeah, you think financial stuff is boring. Ha ha ha ha ha.).

But mostly, I'm thinking that now would be a good time to sweep and/or shop vac all those leaves and other things out of the garage. Which is a much less fun thought.

CR side swipes Kansas

Calculated Risk/Bill McBride is The Best Source Evaaaah for economic indicators. If you're tracking the business cycle and you aren't reading him at least most days, you're a fool.

Occasionally, there are little remarks that make the otherwise neutral and therefore dry summary of various indicators quite ... lively. One of today's posts was on coincident indicators from the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank (Investopedia definition of Coincident indicator: http://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/coincidentindicator.asp. Basically, if it isn't a leading indicator and it's not a trailing indicator, it's a coincident indicator. Think: employment, hours worked, stuff like that that comes out week to week). Only a few states did poorly in August, and here is McBride explaining why:

"The worst performing states over the last 6 months are West Virginia (coal), North Dakota (oil), Alaska (oil), Oklahoma (oil), New Mexico, and Kansas (self inflicted policy errors)."

Obvs, between the low point in the commodity cycle (Euro not doing great, China doing pretty bad all things considered) and the transition away from fossil fuels to renewables, the affected states are mostly ones that were reliant on fossil fuels and especially on expensive oil, which isn't expensive at all right now. But Kansas, ah, Kansas.

Self Inflicted Policy Error indeed!

One of the worst things I can say about Hillary Clinton is, years ago in her efforts to reach across the aisle, and when Brownback was a Senator rather than governor, she tried real hard to get along with him. I thought it was a mistake then, because he's too fucking crazy to make a deal with. I guess this proves it! (The policy error in question is a change Brownback made to the tax code that has NOT gone well at all, which was pretty obvious at the time to anyone who was not diagnosable. For reference purposes: http://www.khi.org/news/article/governor-signs-tax-cuts-law/)