Good morning

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Second note: I am continuing with the political cartoon theme. Because this stuff should be showcased.

The headlines:

  1. Obama and the fiscal cliff.

    Link: the leap of faith.

    Right – so – this is the next big D-rama. Anyone willing to take bets?

    I watched a really irritating guy on CNN try to explain it by leaping about a giant touchscreen monitor and causing an outright display of co-host hostility. Here’s a video of the same guy doing it earlier in the day – just without the co-host:

    The issue? The House of Reps clearly sees itself as the barrier to all future tax increases. The Senate sees itself as the barrier to any cuts in social spending. As affirmed by the clearly-confused American public, since there’s been no real change in the House of Representatives, the Senate, or the Presidency. So the US is still stuck in a vice of bipartisan uselessness. Someone has to give ground – but given that the election is now over, I don’t think that it’s clear who has the most to lose.

    We should probably prepare ourselves for a frustrating two months of economic chicken. And then: aftermath. Emphasis on the “math”.

  2. Or he could levy a carbon tax.

    Link: on who? China?

    HSBC has suggested that Obama could address the whole Fiscal Cliff issue by just introducing a new Carbon Tax.

    But, like, hasn’t all of American production been outsourced to China?

    I’m just not sure that such a tax would be, ironically, sustainable…

  3. Samaras wins the austerity vote.

    Link: did anyone else see the petrol bombs?

    The vote has come and gone in the early hours of the Greek morning. By a majority of just three, the Greeks have committed themselves to labour law changes and the reduction of pension payments.

    Greek austerity is failing because it doesn’t really seem to be happening in the way that it needs to. Yes – cutting spending on pensions was economically necessary for the time being – because when you look at the IMF projections of that cost, there is just no way that Greece could sustain that in its current position. Or any position, in fact. But where are the structural reforms?

    Where is the deregulation of the economic rents and the legislative protection of special interest groups? Those are the short-term and long-term essentials to make Greece more competitive, which will allow it to grow, which will alleviate the current standstill.

    Everyone should read Michael Lewis’ Boomerang (here’s my review) to get an idea of what some of the real Greek issues are. In the meantime, we wait for the Budget Vote on Sunday.

  4. Blackberry is dead on arrival.

    Link: who is this “blackberry”?

    The death knoll:

    “We believe that BB10 is likely to be DOA. We expect the new OS to be met with a lukewarm response at best and ultimately likely to fail.” – Pacific Crest Analyst James Faucette.

    I don’t hear of anyone waiting to buy a new Blackberry. What I see are a lot of facebook statuses telling the world that “I’ve moved over to whatsapp – no more BBM! 🙁 🙁 #OhWell”

That’s all for now.

Have a good day.