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Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta EEUU Economia. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta EEUU Economia. Mostrar todas las entradas

sábado, diciembre 06, 2014

China surpasses U.S. to become largest world economy

www.taringa.net
For the first time in decades, the U.S. is no longer the largest economy in the world, and China has become number one, the International Monetary Fund says. 
The IMF recently released the latest numbers for the world economy, stating that China will produce $17.6 trillion in terms of goods and services--  compared with $17.4 trillion for the U.S.
Just 14 years ago, the U.S. produced nearly three times as much as the Chinese, Dow Jones’ MarketWatch reported.
But each country reports its data in its own currency, according to the IMF website. In order to compare data, each country's statistics must be converted into a common currency. But there are several ways to manage that conversion and each can result in very different answers. 
Another measure of an economy’s strength is its “purchasing power parity” or PPP—the rate at which the currency of one country would have to be converted into that of another country to buy the same amount of goods and services in each country.
China now accounts for 16.5% of the global economy when measured in real PPP terms, compared with 16.3% for the U.S.
Prices aren't the same in each country, Business Insider suggests. The same shirt will cost you less in Shanghai than in San Francisco, so comparing countries without taking these factors into account is not always reliable.
Though the average Chinese citizen earns a lot less than the average American, simply converting a Chinese salary into dollars underestimates how much purchasing power that person, and therefore that country, might have. 
So the IMF measures both GDP in market-exchange terms, and PPP terms. On the purchasing-power basis, China is overtaking the U.S. right now and becoming the world's biggest economy.
MarketWatch columnist Brett Arends suggests that if you just look at international exchange rates, the U.S economy is still larger than China’s allegedly by almost 70 percent. But, Arends adds, although these measures are commonly cited, they can also be unreliable.
Experts have predicted China’s economy would surpass America’s for years and recent conventional wisdom anticipated the change this year.
China’s economy may now be the world’s largest, but it’s still not the richest. GDP per head is still less than a quarter of U.S. levels, the Financial Times reported.

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jueves, noviembre 13, 2014

Precio del petróleo, elecciones 2014 y revolución energética en EEUU

cubanalisis
Diego Trinidad, PhD
En el dinámico mundo de la energía se producen cambios diariamente. Desde que escribí en agosto mi tercer artículo sobre la revolución energética que se ha producido en Estados Unidos en los últimos cinco años, mucho ha cambiado. Específicamente, el precio del barril de petróleo en el mercado mundial ha bajado dramáticamente un 27% desde principios del verano hasta la fecha (hoy domingo 9 de noviembre cerró en $78.65 el barril; a principios de junio estaba a $115 el barril). 

Esta baja en el precio del petróleo ya ha traído cambios enormes en la geopolítica mundial. En el futuro inmediato, todavía mucho más cambiará si este nivel de precios, entre $78 y $85 por barril, como todo parece indicar, se mantiene en el 2015. El petróleo a ese precio representa una ganancia de un trillón de dólares ($1’000,000’000,000, es decir, un millón de millones en español) para los consumidores en el mundo entero.

Esta semana, cuando en la elección congresional de EEUU el Partido Republicano ganó el control del Senado con un aumento de 8 senadores (quizás 9 cuando se celebre una elección especial en Lousiana en diciembre, donde el candidato republicano es favorito para ganar) se produjo el otro gran evento reciente.

Los cambios que el control del Congreso (Cámara de Representantes, donde el Partido Republicano ganó 18 escaños adicionales, y Senado, en el que en enero controlarán 53 ó 54 asientos frente a 46 ó 47) por los republicanos, comenzando en enero del 2015, traerán a EEUU en el campo energético serán sísmicos. El desarrollo de estos dos temas, y como afectarán a EEUU y el resto del mundo en el próximo año, es el tema de este cuarto artículo. Durante el nuevo año, según se produzcan más acontecimientos, continuará esta serie de artículos.

Algunos analistas y expertos previeron la caída en el precio del petróleo durante el verano, pero pocos pensaron que sería tan súbita y tan grande. Sin embargo, al nivel presente, la producción de petróleo en EEUU no será afectada significativamente.

La nueva tecnología de fracking (fraccionamiento hidráulico) para extraer petróleo de las formaciones rocosas de shale (esquisto) es productiva por lo menos hasta un precio de $60 por barril. Casi nadie prevé que los precios bajen a ese nivel, pero aunque así fuera, los nuevos pozos de petróleo que utilizan la tecnología de fracking son diferentes a los pozos tradicionales. Cuando el precio del petróleo baja y hace estos pozos económicamente  improductivos, pueden ser clausurados y fácilmente reabiertos cuando el precio sube de nuevo. 

Además, algunas compañías como Whiting Petroleum, basada en Denver, Colorado, y una de las dos grandes compañías que han desarrollado los yacimientos del campo Bakken, en Dakota Norte, junto con Continental Petroleum, tienen una estrategia interesante para enfrentar precios mas bajos en el mercado, como los de ahora: compran acciones futuras a precio más bajo, y cuando el precio baja, lejos de perder, ganan dinero.  De esa manera, se protegen y pueden soportar precios más bajos.

Para los consumidores americanos -y para el resto del mundo que no es productor de petróleo- los nuevos precios más bajos han sido una enorme bonanza económica. Cada consumidor americano ahorrará como $700 por año con la gasolina a menos de $3.00 por galón, como está ahora por primera vez en dos años.

Para el resto del mundo significará grandes ahorros en la importación de petróleo, presupuestos más bajos, y un nivel de inflación mucho menor. China ahorra más de $2 billones (un billón en inglés son mil millones) por cada dólar que baje el precio del barril de petróleo. Para la India, estos nuevos precios significan un ahorro de más de $40 billones.

Pero para ciertos países gobernados por regímenes autoritarios y dictatoriales, como Rusia, Irán y Venezuela, estos nuevos precios son ruinosos. Para Arabia Saudita y los Emiratos del Golfo Pérsico representa pérdidas multimillonarias de dólares en exportaciones, pero Arabia Saudita en particular, con reservas de 737 billones de dólares, puede fácilmente soportar este nivel de precios por largo tiempo.

Rusia, Irán y Venezuela no pueden. Rusia basa su presupuesto en un barril de petróleo a $100. Pero tiene reservas de 454 billones de dólares. Sin embargo, las tremendas pérdidas en divisas a precios alrededor de $80 significan que los proyectos expansionistas del Presidente Vladimir Putin quedan paralizados. De la misma manera, las mejoras necesarias en la infraestructura de Rusia, incluyendo en la exploración y producción de los pozos petroleros de Siberia, también tendrán que ser pospuestas.

Irán basa su presupuesto en el petróleo a $136 por barril y tiene bajas reservas por motivo de las restricciones comerciales provocadas por las sanciones impuestas por EEUU y la Unión Europea, a pesar de haberse relajado en meses pasados. Por otro lado, Irán produce y exporta gas natural, y en China sobre todo tiene un cliente a largo plazo. Pero los nuevos precios del petróleo han limitado mucho su capacidad para hacer daño en el Medio Oriente y en su apoyo a grupos terroristas, lo cual es una bendición para el resto del mundo.

Venezuela es el país que más y mayores riesgos enfrenta en el futuro inmediato. Venezuela necesita el petróleo a $120 por barril. De manera que desde principios del verano está sufriendo pérdidas ruinosas en sus recaudaciones por la exportación de petróleo, las cuales han caído a muy bajos niveles debidos al deterioro de su infraestructura de producción.

Por cada dólar que baja el precio de un barril, Venezuela pierde entre 450 y 500 millones de dólares en sus ganancias por la exportación de petróleo, y sus entradas dependen en un extraordinario 90% de la exportación de petróleo. Además, el año pasado Venezuela tuvo un déficit fiscal del 17% de su Producto Interno Bruto (PIB). Con un nivel de inflación del 60% anual (el mayor del mundo), reservas de solo 20 billones de dólares y una deuda externa gigantesca, la cual ya malamente puede pagar, el país está al borde de la quiebra. Cuanto tiempo puede sobrevivir bajo estas condiciones es la gran pregunta.

Claro que los problemas de Venezuela son mucho mayores debido a su ayuda, a través de PetroCaribe, a países de la Cuenca del Caribe, incluyendo, por supuesto, a Cuba. Todos estos países sufrirán muy pronto las consecuencias de la ruina venezolana, pero ninguno como Cuba.

El gobierno de Cuba ya hace años viene previendo el momento cuando los subsidios de Venezuela se reduzcan o terminen. Se ha asegurado de otros suministradores como Angola, Irán, Brasil, Rusia y otros exportadores de petróleo. Recibe ayuda económica de Rusia y de China, y esta misma semana se reportó que tiene planeado producir hasta un 24% de su energía de fuentes renovables para el año 2030. Además, todavía aspira a desarrollar las reservas de petróleo en sus aguas adyacentes.

Pero para esto falta mucho tiempo, el tiempo que el régimen cubano no tiene. Cuba probablemente nunca se verá en la situación que afrontó a partir de 1991-92, cuando perdió los subsidios económicos y el suministro de petróleo de la Unión Soviética, pero una reducción inmediata en la ayuda de Venezuela puede afectar seriamente al régimen en el futuro próximo.

Casi tan importante, si no mucho más, que la caída en los precios del petróleo, ha sido -y será- el impacto de las elecciones congresionales ganadas el pasado martes 4 de noviembre por el Partido Republicano. El control del Senado por los republicanos, y por consiguiente del Congreso, ya que la mayoría en la Cámara no solo se mantuvo, sino que aumentó, logrará que en enero del 2015, los grandes cambios previstos (y predichos en esta serie de artículos desde hace casi tres años) en lo que puede ser un renacimiento económico en Estados Unidos, se logren antes que un nuevo presidente sea electo en el 2016.

Ya los líderes republicanos de ambas cámaras han anunciado lo que será su programa de gobierno para el 2015. La primera ley que probablemente aprobará el Congreso, quizás en el mismo enero, será la construcción y apertura del viaducto Keystone XL, desde la provincia occidental de Alberta, en el oeste de Canadá, al Golfo de México. Este importante proyecto, paralizado innecesariamente por razones estrictamente políticas por el Presidente, producirá por si solo una tremenda bonanza económica para EEUU.

El Presidente dijo durante la campaña presidencial del 2012 que este proyecto solo crearía 50 empleos (lo que le ganó el premio de 4 “Pinochos” del Washington Post por una de las mentiras mas grandes del año). En verdad, de acuerdo con varios estudios recientes, creará al menos 45,000 empleos durante su construcción -y hasta medio millón de nuevos empleos para el 2035.

Pero no solo eso, sino que existen al menos 25 otros proyectos relacionados con la construcción del viaducto Keystone XL en Canadá y EEUU que pueden convertir a Norteamérica (incluyendo a México) en un productor de 17.5 millones de barriles de petróleo diarios, casi igual a la producción de Arabia Saudita y Rusia sumadas.

Otros dos proyectos de ley planeados por los republicanos en enero del 2015 son casi tan importantes como el anterior. Uno es la abrogación de la ley federal de 1975 que prohíbe la exportación de petróleo americano. El otro es el relajamiento en las regulaciones para construir plantas y terminales para la exportación de gas natural licuado a Europa en la costa este, y a Japón y China desde la costa oeste de EEUU.

Hay más de 25 proyectos esperando por su aprobación, y estas plantas/terminales demoran como dos años en construirse, de manera que el tiempo apremia. Claro que estos tres proyectos de ley, de ser aprobados por el Congreso en enero, pueden ser vetados por el Presidente.

Pero los tres proyectos cuentan con apoyo bipartidista (en el Senado quizás cuente con 65 votos; se necesitan 66 para anular un veto presidencial), y es muy posible que el Presidente, debilitado políticamente como ha quedado, y con solo dos años restantes en su segundo período, firme cada una de estas tres leyes. En estos momentos solamente se puede imaginar el efecto positivo que esto produciría en la industria privada en general, pero más que todo en la industria energética en particular.

Solo se puede imaginar el efecto que esto produciría en la industria privada en general, pero en la industria energética en particular será impactante. Los empresarios de negocios verían con optimismo un nuevo clima en el cual la economía funcionaría con mas libertad, menos regulaciones y menos interferencia del gobierno federal. Una tasa de crecimiento mayor que el 3% anual sería fácil de visualizar.

Tres otras medidas que pueden beneficiar mucho a la economía americana y contribuir a un mayor crecimiento económico, son la apertura de la gran reserva ANWR en el norte de Alaska (10 billones de barriles de petróleo), la apertura en general a la exploración y perforación en tierras federales del oeste de EEUU, donde se encuentran mas del 80% del petróleo y gas natural en el país, y finalmente, la liberación al mercado del petróleo contenido en la Reserva Estratégica de Petróleo situada en varias cuevas en las costas del Golfo de México.

Esta Reserva, una reliquia de los tiempos de Carter y Ford, cuando primero la OPEP (Organización de Países Exportadores de Petróleo) restringió la exportación de petróleo a EEUU después de la segunda guerra entre Israel y Egipto, ya no es necesaria, debido a que EEUU es el primer productor de petróleo en el mundo. Pero contiene 700 millones de barriles de petróleo, los cuales, si se liberan lentamente, pueden ayudar a bajar todavía más el precio de la gasolina en EEUU y aumentar la capacidad exportadora de petróleo americano al resto del mundo.

Adicionalmente, la aprobación de otras dos leyes más generales se contempla por el liderazgo congresional republicano. Una es rebajar la tasa a los impuestos corporativos,  que ahora están en un 39.1%, los mas altos en el mundo desarrollado. En contraste, en la Unión Europea promedian menos del 24%. El Presidente y los demócratas públicamente apoyan una rebaja al 29%; los republicanos prefieren el 25%. Pero claramente hay apoyo bipartidista a la medida, y esto sería quizás el mejor estímulo que pudiera recibir la economía.

La otra ley propone invitar a los capitales de compañías multinacionales americanas en el extranjero, que se calculan puedan llegar a dos trillones de dólares (dos millones de millones en español), para que sean repatriados sin pagar impuestos, solo con la condición de que sean invertidos en EEUU para crear empleos.

Pero el Presidente y su partido demócrata irracionalmente amenazan con cobrar hasta un 50% de impuesto a las compañías que accedieran a repatriar esos capitales, algo obviamente absurdo. Aquí no hay ningún espacio para negociar, pero tres trillones de dólares invertidos para crear empleos posiblemente producirían al menos tres millones de nuevos trabajos. El impulso para la economía sería incalculable. 

Sin embargo, estas dos últimas medidas, y hasta las tres anteriores (excepto la aprobación del viaducto Keystone XL, la abrogación de la ley que prohíbe exportar petróleo americano, y el relajamiento de las restricciones para exportar gas natural, las que SÍ cuentan con apoyo bipartidista) no serán fácilmente aprobadas por el Congreso, y si lo fueran, indudablemente serían vetadas. De manera que todas ellas son proyectos a largo plazo, casi seguro para después que una nueva administración llegue a Washington en 2017.

Todo esto, lo que hasta el pasado martes solo era una gran esperanza para el 2017, cuando un nuevo presidente (o presidenta), sin importar de que partido, tomara posesión del cargo, ahora puede ser realidad, mucho antes de lo que nadie hubiera pensado.

El mundo desde el nuevo año 2015 puede ser un mundo distinto, de mayor prosperidad y de mayor cooperación internacional, en el cual Estados Unidos otra vez se convierta en el motor de la economía mundial.

Ya no es un sueño, ya no hay que esperar tres años más. Ya puede ser realidad.

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miércoles, octubre 29, 2014

President Obama in big trouble


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jueves, agosto 28, 2014

WELFARE NATION Census: One-third of Americans getting benefits


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miércoles, agosto 13, 2014

China Appears Ready to Dump Its U.S. Treasury Bonds

Although investors hang on every comment by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen to get insight on the direction of interest rates and what it means for the economy and asset prices, the real power to determine U.S. interest rates may be in the hands of China, according to Lombard Street Research. Facing an overvalued currency that is hurting corporate profits and slowing growth, China appears ready to dump its $1.3 trillion in U.S. Treasury bonds to drive U.S. interest rates up and strengthen the dollar.

The secret to China’s spectacular growth beginning in the early 1990s was devaluing its currency to the U.S. dollar from 2.8 Chinese yuan to 8.7 yuan. The devaluation cut the cost of Chinese labor by 68% and launched the cheap labor manufacturing boom. Exports as a percent of GDP grew from about 13% in 1994 to 39% of GDP in 2007.
With the export boom causing huge labor demand, approximately 200 million rural Chinese moved to cities from to 2000 to 2007. During the period, China’s Shanghai Stock Index vaulted 330%, while the U.S. S&P Index was only up 11%.
However, since 2006, the Federal Reserve and both the Bush and Obama administrations have pursued weak-dollar policies by pushing interest rates down. This caused the exchange rate of the dollar to weaken and the yuan to strengthen from 8.3 yuan to 6 yuan to the dollar. The +28% currency increase hammered Chinese competitiveness, and exports fell from 39% to 26% of GDP of the Chinese economy.
China tried to slow the fall of the dollar by increasing its holdings in U.S. Treasury bonds from $400 billion in 2007 to $1.33 trillion at the end of 2013. Despite spending almost a trillion dollars on U.S. Treasury purchases, the weak-dollar policy caused the Shanghai Index to fall by 38%. During the same period the U.S. S&P Index rose 199%.
As the overvalued yuan caused China export competitiveness to evaporate, China has tried to “rebalance its economy” to avoid massive unemployment by shifting to service industries. However, “an expensive currency in a world of weak demand makes it impossible for China to rebalance its economy without a collapse,” according to Lombard.
China’s $1.3 trillion of U.S. Treasury bonds sounds like 7% of the $17.7 trillion U.S. federal debt outstanding, but a third of the debt was supposedly “purchased” by the U.S. government to back Social Security and other purposes. Of the net U.S. public debt outstanding, China owns about one in every seven dollars of U.S. Treasury Bonds.
“For a long time the threat that Beijing might sell US Treasuries rang hollow, but no longer,” according to Lombard. “Growth trouble across the Pacific may have a much bigger impact on US yields in 2015 and 2016 than the expected pace of US central bank tightening” from the Federal Reserve, they argue.
The People’s Bank of China in November of 2013 announced it was ending its purchase of U.S. Treasury bonds. When China sold $48 billion in Treasuries in January, the yuan weakened by 5% to 6.3 yuan to the dollar. China has recently been intervening in the foreign exchange market to prevent the yuan from strengthening.
Although the International Monetary Fund estimates that the yuan is still 5-10% undervalued, Lombard believes that China’s currency is 15-25% overvalued to the U.S. dollar. The easiest way for China to solve the overvaluation problem would be to “liberalize capital flows” by removing restrictions that limit Chinese investments to bank savings accounts and real estate. But, according to Lombard, “if Beijing opened the flood gates, asset diversification would cause huge outflows that would swamp inflows.” Such action could trigger a Chinese banking crisis.
A smooth sale of its U.S. Treasury bond portfolio by China would push up U.S. 10-year Treasury bond yields by up to ½% and U.S. interest rates by about 1%. The People’s Bank of China could intervene in the currency markets to smooth the yuan’s decline. This action “would slow but not derail the US recovery.”
However, yuan devaluation and higher U.S. rates would be a lethal combination for the Eurozone competitiveness. Most European countries have modestly improved their trade positions with China thanks to softer consumer spending, which has capped imports. A much weaker yuan and higher U.S. interest rates would devastate peripheral European economies that compete with China for lower value-added manufacturing.
The weakening of the U.S. dollar that began in 2007 may have precipitated the 2008 global financial crisis. China would prefer to not start another international currency crisis. However, desperate to weaken the yuan to restart growth and support employment, China, Lombard Street Research believes, will soon start dumping U.S. Treasury bonds.

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martes, agosto 12, 2014

U.S. Wages Down 23% Since 2008

U.S. jobs pay an average 23% less today than they did before the 2008 recession, according to a new report released on Monday by the United States Conference of Mayors.

In total, the report found $93 billion in lost wages. 
Jobs lost during the recession paid an average $61,637. As of 2014, jobs in the same sectors paid an average of $47,171 annually. 
"Under a similar analysis conducted by the Conference of Mayors during the 2001-2002 recession, the wage gap was only 12% compared to the current 23%--meaning the wage gap has nearly doubled from one recession to the next," stated the Conference of Mayors in a statement.  
The report also found that 73% of metro area households earn salaries of less than $35,000 a year. 
President Barack Obama, who is on a two-week vacation at Martha's Vineyard, has yet to comment on the dour economic findings.

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martes, agosto 05, 2014

America’s weakness


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lunes, marzo 10, 2014

Senator Marco Rubio Proposes New Economic Growth Agenda

SenatorMarcoRubio


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lunes, marzo 03, 2014

A History Of The Minimum Wage

TIME
 

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jueves, enero 23, 2014

Why many Americans cannot make much money - O'Reilly


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viernes, enero 17, 2014

U.S. Seven Devastating Economic Facts

U.S. economic conditions in 2014 continue to languish, as millions of Americans remain jobless. Seven economic facts underscore America’s increasingly dire economic outlook.

1. A Record 91.8 Million Americans Are No Longer in the Workforce
The latest Labor Department figures reveal that a record 91.8 million Americans are no longer in the U.S. labor force. To be included in the Labor Department's calculations for this statistic, a person must be 16 years or older, a civilian, not in an institution (such as prison), and someone who has not looked for a job in the last four weeks.
Minorities have been hit especially hard. As Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research noted to PBS, last month’s jobs report also saw “the lowest rate of labor force participation among African-American men since we have kept that count. So that was really striking.”
According to the U.S. Census, 317 million people live in the United States.
2. Since Jan. 2009, the Number of Jobless Working-Age Americans Has Risen 9.6 Million People
As Michael Snyder notes:
The number of working age Americans that do not have a job has increased by nearly 10 million since Barack Obama first entered the White House. In January 2009, the number of "officially unemployed" workers plus the number of Americans "not in the labor force" was sitting at a grand total of 92.6 million. Today, that number has risen to 102.2 million. That means that the number of working age Americans that are not working has grown by close to 10 million since Barack Obama first took office.
3.  47.4 Million Americans Now Rely on Food Stamps
The Department of Agriculture, which oversees the food stamp program, says that 47,415,895 Americans – roughly one out of every six Americans – now receives food stamps. Indeed, for the last fifteen consecutive months, the number of individuals has consistently stayed above 47 million, a first in U.S. history.
Food stamp enrollments, which are considered an indicator of economic distress, have skyrocketed in recent years as the Obama administration has loosened eligibility requirements and aggressively promoted enrollments. In January 2009, 31.9 million people received food stamps.
4. A Record 10.98 Million Americans Now Receive Disability Checks
Social Security data reveal that a record 10,988,269 Americans now receive a monthly check for an average $1,146.43. Several recent studies and investigations have revealed that the nation’s disability program is rife with fraud and abuse.
When health care for disabled workers is included, U.S. taxpayers now spend $260 billion a year funding the disability program – a figure that exceeds the amount spent on food stamps and welfare combined.
5.  Nearly One in Three Americans Fell into Poverty Between 2009-2011
A new Census Bureau report released last week found that 31.6% of Americans fell beneath the federal poverty line for at least two months between 2009 to 2011, a 4.5% increase over the 2005 to 2007 period.
6.  42% of Americans Believe Themselves Worse Off Financially than a Year Ago
Gallup on Wednesday released its latest “Mood of the Nation” poll that found that 42% of Americans say they are worse off financially than they were a year ago, a number that has grown over the last two years.
7. U.S. Debt Now Stands at over $17.3 Trillion
America’s federal debt explosion continues unabated. In Jan. 2009, the national debt was $10.626 trillion. Today, America’s national debt stands at over $17,300,000,000,000.

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jueves, octubre 17, 2013

Sen. Rubio: The Real Crisis Remains

SenatorMarcoRubio

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sábado, mayo 04, 2013

Stocks end at historic highs, spurred by upbeat jobs data

 
Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy
Stocks closed out the week with a bang, with the Dow briefly topping 15,000 for the first time, as Wall Street cheered a better-than-expected April employment report.
All three major indexes -- the Dow Jones industrials, the broader S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq -- finished sharply higher for the week, with the Dow and S&P advancing to all-time closing highs.
"It's going to be the first time we put two weeks together in a row to the upside in about eight weeks…so that's the good news," said Art Hogan, managing director at Lazard Capital Markets. "The bad news is that we've run out of catalysts next week—earnings season is virtually over and the macro is very quiet."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average shot up about 143 points, propelled by Caterpillar and Alcoa. Earlier, the index crossed above 15,000 for the first time. It took the blue-chip index nearly six years to cross 15,000 after it first topped 14,000.
The S&P 500 easily surpassed 1,600 and the Nasdaq also rallied. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, slumped below 13.
Most key S&P sectors ended in positive territory, led by materials and energy. Telecoms slipped.
U.S. employers added 165,000 jobs in April, according to the Labor Department, while the unemployment rate fell to a four-year low of 7.5 percent. Economists in a Reuters poll expected a reading of 145,000 and unemployment to hold steady at 7.6 percent.
"The [jobs] number beat consensus and also importantly, the revision from last month tells the story of a not-as-sluggish labor market," said Troy Logan, managing director and senior economist at Warren Financial Service. "However, the unemployment rate is still high. So that tells us that the Fed is going to continue with its accommodative policy – that means we have Fed support, which is good for asset prices and a jobs market which is not getting worse."
On Wednesday, the Fed said it was prepared to "increase or reduce" the monthly pace of its $85 billion in bond purchases, after its Open Markets Committee (FOMC) meeting.
Global markets cheered the employment report, with European shares turning decisively higher and the dollar jumping against the euro and the yen. Oil prices rallied, while gold, often viewed as a safe haven, slid near $1,460 an ounce. Treasury prices also declined.
More than 80 percent of S&P 500 companies have posted quarterly results so far, with 68 percent topping earnings expectations and 21 percent missing forecasts, according to Reuters. If all remaining companies post numbers in line with estimates, earnings will be up 5.2 percent on last year.
But on average, sales have come in 1 percent below estimates, with only 46 percent of companies beating their revenue projections.
Reuters contributed to this report.

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lunes, abril 29, 2013

Report: Obama Spent Twice as Much Time on Vacation/Golf as Economy

According to a new report by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Institute (GAI), President Barack Obama has spent over twice as many hours on vacation and golf (976 hours) as he has in economic meetings of any kind (474.4 hours).

The report, “Presidential Calendar: A Time-Based Analysis,” used the official White House calendar, Politico’s comprehensive presidential calendar, and media reports through March 31, 2013 to calculate its results.
GAI’s findings may actually understate Obama’s recreational hours.
Last year, Obama told CBS News that playing golf is “the only time that for six hours, I'm outside." But instead of six hours, GAI counted a round of golf as taking just four hours. Likewise, for presidential vacation hours, researchers attributed just six hours of any day of vacation to leisure activity.
“Like most people, presidents still do work while on vacation,” said GAI President Peter Schweizer. “So we really went out of our way to fairly and accurately reflect how the president spends his time.”
The study applied a similarly generous assessment to Obama’s time spent in economic meetings by counting anything on the official White House calendar even remotely related to the economy as an economic meeting. For example, “Obama meets with Cabinet secretaries” and “Obama has lunch with four CEOs” counted as economic meetings.
GAI’s new report dovetails with its presidential calendar analysis last July that found Obama devotes little time to economic meetings.  
Asked whether the latest numbers paint a negative portrait of presidential economic leadership, Schweizer says that is for others to decide.
“People understand that presidents have the most stressful job in the world and need a break from time to time,” said Schweizer. “There will be some who will be encouraged by the numbers and some who will wish the president spent more time in economic meetings. As a government watchdog group, we just tabulate the numbers and let others decide how to interpret them.”

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lunes, abril 15, 2013

Ninety days of destruction from the Obama White House

The economic news in America has gone from bad to worse. 
First, we found out the jobs numbers are collapsing. Then retail sales figures were released- they show across the board contraction. 
Next, we found out U.S. business inventory figures were a disappointment. 
Finally, consumer confidence not only collapsed, but it was the largest miss from expectations in U.S. economic history. 2 words explain it all: "Ninety days."
Creating jobs in Obama's America is like trying to grow healthy plants in a nuclear blast zone.
Ninety days is all it took to put the U.S. economy into a coma, to destroy any chance of recovery. 90 days defined by the Obama "Axis of Evil” -- Taxation, regulation, unionization, litigation, IRS intimidation, demonization, and government strangulation. The last 90 days of this Axis of Evil have sealed our fate.
There are no new jobs. There will be no new jobs. Creating jobs in Obama's America is like trying to grow healthy plants in a nuclear blast zone. Obama has turned the U.S. economy into a “Hostile Work Environment.” I call it Obamageddon. 
Look at the toxic results of what has happened in the last deadly 90 days. Last month we added a miserable 88,000 jobs. 660,000 Americans dropped off the job rolls...in one month
Ninety million working-age, able-bodied Americans are no longer in the workforce. The workforce participation rate is the lowest since 1979. For men it’s the lowest since 1948 (when record keeping began). Disposable income in January was the lowest since 1959 (since record-keeping began). Under Obama we’re truly back to the future.
Twenty-percent of eligible adults are on food stamps. Fourteen million on disability. Record-setting numbers of Americans are breaking into their own retirement accounts just to survive. Student loan debt is a disaster -- with defaults up 36% from a year ago. 16.4 million Americans live in poverty…in the suburbs.
You’re on your own as the American economy descends into darkness, overwhelmed by debt and entitlements. 
Obama and the mainstream media have been blowing smoke for months, but the gig is up. No recovery is coming.
Let’s take a look at what Obama did to “save us” in the past 90 days:
- Federal income taxes went up dramatically on business owners (ie jobs creators). 
- Payroll taxes went up. 
- Exemptions and deductions were taken away. 
- ObamaCare taxes took effect. State and local taxes went up across the USA. 
- Gas prices went up drastically -- even as we learned Obama’s EPA wants new gas taxes.
- Grocery prices soared. 
- Health insurance soared. For many small businesses we learned it will double next year. 
- Electric rates went up -- as we learned that Obama’s EPA doubled biofuel taxes, while also trying to eradicate the coal industry and ban oil drilling. 
- IRS audits went up dramatically on business owners (which means higher accountant and legal bills).
Add it up: There’s no money left. Even “the rich” feel poor. The middle class is drowning. Small business is under attack. How can anyone spend if they have no money left after Obama's relentless taxes? Where is the money coming from to start a business?
But it gets even worse. In those same 90 days, the government created 6,118 new rules and regulations. That’s 68 per day. 
To produce that many job-killing regulations, Obama must have sweatshops populated with  slave labor, whipped and kept in chains, working in shifts 24 hours per day. Obama is literally killing the spirit of business owners and taxpayers.
Obama is like a drug addict with giant bills to pay and no income. He has to find a way to pay for his food stamps, disability and unemployment society. 
The bill to keep this Ponzi scheme going gets bigger by the hour. But with 90 million adults no longer working, and everyone who is willing to work being robbed to pay for a nation of deadbeats, who is left to jump-start the economy? Who is left to create jobs? The answer is…clearly…no one.
Even more shocking and depressing are Obama’s priorities. He claims we desperately need to raise all these taxes. 
Yet, our president had no problem giving away $250 million to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, $500 million to the Palestinians, $1.5 million in grant money to study why lesbians are fat (I’m not kidding), and billions of dollars in income tax credits to illegal aliens (who never paid income taxes in the first place). And you wonder why people are angry and disillusioned?
This has been 90 days for the history books. Ninety days that have made an economic collapse much more likely than a recovery. Ninety days that has put capitalism and American exceptionalism on life support.
Ninety days of the Obama "Axis of Evil” showcasing what one man, supported by a blind, adoring liberal-biased media, can do to snuff out ambition, drive, work ethic, creativity, inspiration and enthusiasm -- all in the name of equality, fairness and social justice.
Ninety days that will live in infamy. My book "The Ultimate Obama Survival Guide" is out today. Just in time -- because now it's a fight for survival.
Wayne Allyn Root is capitalist evangelist, entrepreneur, and Libertarian-conservative Republican. He is a former Libertarian vice presidential nominee. Wayne's latest book will be published on April 15: "The Ultimate Obama Survival Guide: Secrets to Protecting Your Family, Your Finances, and Your Freedom." For more, visit his website: www.ROOTforAmerica.com. Follow him on Twitter@WayneRoot.

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miércoles, abril 10, 2013

The Obama Plan: More Spending + Tax Hikes + SS Cuts = Lots of Anger

President Obama found himself weathering bipartisan broadsides Wednesday as he sent Congress his 2014 budget proposal, which in its effort to please both sides of the aisle has ended up angering both. 
The budget arrived on Capitol Hill Wednesday morning, delivered 65 days after the legal deadline. The $3.77 trillion spending plan, which is over 2,000 pages, tries to curb deficits by further raising taxes on top earners and reining in the growth of Social Security. 
But Republicans argue they already consented to increased taxes as part of the fiscal crisis deal and have expressed little interest in negotiating another hike. And liberal Democrats -- particularly powerful advocacy groups -- have launched a series of campaigns to oppose the changes to Social Security. 
The president's proposal being unveiled Wednesday includes an additional $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade, bringing total deficit savings to $4.3 trillion, based on the administration's calculations. It projects that the deficit for the 2014 budget year, which begins Oct. 1, would fall to $744 billion. That would be the lowest gap between spending and revenue since 2008. 
The president's plan tracks an offer he made to House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, during December's budget negotiations, which Boehner ended up walking away from because of his opposition to higher taxes on the wealthy. 
The Obama budget proposal will join competing budget outlines already approved by the Republican-controlled House and the Democratic-run Senate. 
The most sweeping proposal in Obama's budget is a switch in the way the government calculates the annual cost-of-living adjustments for the millions of recipients of Social Security and other government benefit programs. The current method of measuring increases in the consumer price index would be modified to track a process known as chained CPI. 
The new method takes into account changes that occur when people substitute goods rising in price with less expensive products. It results in slightly lower annual reading for inflation. 
The switch in the inflation formula would cut spending on government benefit programs by $130 billion over 10 years, although the administration said it planned to protect the most vulnerable, including the very elderly. The change would also raise about $100 billion in higher taxes because the current CPI formula is used to adjust tax brackets each year. A lower inflation measure would mean more money taxed at higher rates. 
In the tax area, Obama would raise an additional $580 billion by restricting deductions for the top 2 percent of family incomes. The budget would also implement the "Buffett Rule" requiring that households with incomes of more than $1 million pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. Charitable giving would be excluded. 
Obama's plan is not all about budget cuts. It also includes an additional $50 billion to fund infrastructure investments, including $40 billion in a "Fix It First" effort to provide immediate investments to repair highways, bridges, transit systems and airports nationwide. 
Obama's budget would also provide $1 billion to launch a network of 15 manufacturing innovation institutes across the country, and it earmarks funding to support high-speed rail projects. 
The president also is proposing establishment of program to offer preschool to all 4-year-olds from low- and moderate-income families, with the money to support the effort coming from increased taxes on tobacco products. 
The administration said its proposals to increase spending would not increase the deficit but rather are paid for either by increasing taxes or making deeper cuts to other programs. 
Among the proposed cuts, the administration wants to trim defense spending by an additional $100 billion and domestic programs by an extra $100 billion over the next decade. 
The budget proposes cutting $400 billion from Medicare and other health care programs over a decade. The cuts would come in a variety of ways, including negotiating better prescription drug prices and asking wealthy seniors to pay more. 
It would obtain an additional $200 billion in savings by scaling back farm subsidies and trimming federal retiree programs. 
Congress and the administration have already secured $2.5 trillion in deficit reduction over the next 10 years through budget reductions and with the end-of-year tax increase on the rich. Obama's plan would bring that total to $4.3 trillion over 10 years. 
It is unlikely that Congress will get down to serious budget negotiations until this summer, when the government once again will be confronted with the need to raise the government's borrowing limit or face the prospect of a first-ever default on U.S. debt. 
As part of the administration's effort to win over Republicans, Obama will have a private dinner at the White House with about a dozen GOP senators Wednesday night. The budget is expected to be a primary topic, along with proposed legislation dealing with gun control and immigration. 
Early indications are that the budget negotiations will be intense. Republicans have been adamant in their rejection of higher taxes, arguing that the $600 billion increase on top earners that was part of the late December agreement to prevent the government from going over the "fiscal cliff" were all the new revenue they will tolerate. 
The administration maintains that Obama's proposal is balanced with the proper mix of spending cuts and tax increases. 
Obama has presided over four straight years of annual deficits totaling more than $1 trillion, reflecting in part the lost revenue during a deep recession and the government's efforts to get the economy going again and stabilize the financial system. 
The Obama budget's $1.8 trillion in new deficit cuts would take the place of the automatic $1.2 trillion in reductions required by a 2011 budget deal. That provision triggered $85 billion in automatic cuts for the current budget year, and those reductions, known as a "sequester," would not be affected by Obama's new budget. 
The budget plan already passed by the GOP-controlled House would cut deficits by a total $4.6 trillion over 10 years on top of the $1.2 trillion called for in the 2011 deal. The budget outline approved by the Democratic-controlled Senate tracks more closely to the Obama proposal, although it does not include changes to the cost-of-living formula for Social Security. 

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lunes, abril 08, 2013

How competitive is America? A Hangout with The Economist

EconomistMagazine

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viernes, marzo 08, 2013

Political Calculations: The Demand Curve for the U.S. Minimum Wage

How much will President Obama's 2013 State of the Union proposal to increase the federal minimum wage to $9.00 per hour affect the teens and young adults who make up roughly half of all those who earn the minimum wage or less in the United States?
We've been dancing around that question as we've been considering the recent history of minimum wage increases in recent weeks, but today, we're finally going to answer it!
Or rather, you are, because we've built a tool that you can use to do the math for yourself! Here, you just need to enter either President Obama's or your own proposed minimum wage (ideally in terms of constant 2011 U.S. dollars), and our tool will do the rest!
Minimum Wage Data
Input Data Values
Proposed Minimum Wage [U.S. Dollars per Hour]
Approximate Quantity of Americans Age 15-24 with Incomes
Calculated Results Values
... After Minimum Wage Increase
For those of you accessing this tool through a site that republishes the RSS feed for our posts, click here to access the original functioning version of the tool above!
Using President Obama's proposed minimum wage of $9.00 per hour, we estimate that the number of 15-24 year old Americans with incomes would decline by over 1.8 million from 2011's figure of 26,014,000 to the 24,192,580 figure estimated by our tool above, assuming no major shifts of the demand curve for American teens and young adults.
Here's how we get to that figure. We built a demand curve for the minimum wage using the income data that the U.S. Census Bureau has collected and reported in an easy-to-use digital format for each year from 1994 to 2011 (until this September, this will be the most recent year for which this data is available.)
In doing that, we considered the timing of when changes in the U.S. federal minimum wage occurred in the years they were implemented, and weighted them accordingly.
And then, we considered the situation where a number of states have set their minimum wage levels above the federal minimum wage. Since the minimum wage that applies in those states is the greater of the federal or state minimum wage level, we then took into account the percentage of the U.S. population that might be affected by that difference, and weighted the effective national minimum wage level by the affected state populations exposed to higher minimum wage levels as well.
Our last step was to then adjust the resulting effective national minimum wage level for inflation, with the results recorded in terms of constant 2011 U.S. dollars.
The results of that hour's worth of work on our part is presented in the chart below, in which we visualize the demand curve for the U.S. minimum wage.
Demand Curve for Age 15-24 Income Earners, 1994-2011 Weighted for State Population, Constant 2011 U.S. Dollars

We next identified the years that coincide with the Dot-Com Bubble, which ran from April 1997 through June 2003, since the effect of the bubble first caused the demand curve for Age 15-24 Americans to shift to the right during the inflation phase of the bubble (April 1997 to August 2000) before shifting back to the left during the deflation phase of the bubble (August 2000 to June 2003) and ending up roughly where it started.
Having identified the years that were affected by the dynamics of the Dot-Com Bubble's inflation and deflation phases, we then excluded the data for these years from the linear regression analysis of the remaining data, as they are clearly the result of an atypical situation for the U.S. economy. Here, we assume that the demand curve follows a mostly linear path for the prices and quantities involved outside the years affected by the Dot-Com Bubble.
And that's how we created the demand curve for teens and young adults based on the empirical evidence we've documented below!
Now, some of our economically-minded readers might wander if using the minimum wage per hour is the right "price" to use in our chart.
It is, and here's why. Since we're spanning the years of 1994 through 2011 in our analysis, we considered the changes that have been recorded with respect to the distribution of the total money income earned by Age 15-24 individuals over that time. We adjusted the 1994 distribution of income for this age group to be in terms of constant 2011 U.S. dollars, then determined the net change in the number of individuals at a number of income increments between 2011 and 1994. The results of that exercise are presented graphically below:
Net Change in Number of Age 15-24 Total Money Income Earners from 1994 to 2011 by $2,500 Increments

From 1994 through 2011, the most recent year for which the data is currently available at this writing, the U.S. Census Bureau reports that there has been a net decrease of 1,012,000 teens and young adults with incomes. As you can see in our chart above, virtually all of the negative change in the number of Americans Age 15-24 with incomes has occurred at annual incomes that fall below $15,000.
At the current U.S. federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, the annual income earned by an individual earning that wage today while working full-time (40 hours per week), year-round (52 weeks) is $15,080. That means that virtually *all* of the decline in the number of Americans Age 15-24 with incomes from 1994 to 2011 have occurred at the income levels that were the most directly impacted by minimum wage increases over that time.
Recall also that after adjusting for the effect of inflation, the total amount of income earned by American teens and young adults in 1994 and in 2011 is virtually identical. Increasing the minimum wage does not increase the amount of money available to pay wages and salaries, so it provides no benefit to the nation's GDP.
In effect, what this empirical data demonstrates is that increases in a price floor like the minimum wage simply locks out those who find themselves falling below the floor from the job market, without doing much to really benefit those who are at or above that threshold.
Maybe a good question to ask right now is just why President Obama hates American teens and young adults so much?...
On a closing note, using the President's proposed minimum wage level of $9.00 per hour and the quantity of 24,192,580 teens and young adults estimated in our tool above in our economic deadweight loss analysis tool puts the approximate deadweight loss to the U.S. economy with respect to 1994 at just over $5.6 million per hour in terms of 2011 U.S. dollars. And that doesn't even begin to reflect the increased costs to U.S. families and taxpayers who will be additionally burdened to support this portion of the U.S. population.
Keep reading on Political Calculations >>
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martes, febrero 12, 2013

China Surpasses U.S. in International Trade

In 2012, China became the world's biggest trading nation, with the total value of that nation's exports and imports surpassing those of the United States. Bloomberg reports:
U.S. exports and imports of goods last year totaled $3.82 trillion, the U.S. Commerce Department said last week. China’s customs administration reported last month that the country’s trade in goods in 2012 amounted to $3.87 trillion.
Since we have the data, we thought it might be interesting to see just what portion of China's volume of trade is with the United States. Our charts below show the component data for what the U.S. has imported from China, and also what the U.S. has exported to China in each month since January 1985, in terms of each nation's currency (click the images for larger versions):
Value of U.S. Exports to China, January 1985 - December 2012Value of U.S. Imports from China, January 1985 - December 2012
Taking the data just for 2012, we find that the total value of goods and services China either imported from or exported to the U.S. adds up to $536.2 billion U.S. dollars. With a total trade volume of $3.87 trillion U.S. dollars in 2012, China's trade with just the United States accounts for 13.9% of all its international trade activity. Applying similar math for the United States reveals that the U.S.' trade with China accounts for 14.0%, or just under 1/7th, of all its international trade activity.
More at politicalcalculations >>
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viernes, febrero 01, 2013

U.S. Day Ahead: Jobs look ugly but there's a silver lining

ReutersVideo


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"Hablame"

"EN TIEMPOS DIFÍCILES" - Heberto Padilla

A aquel hombre le pidieron su tiempo

para que lo juntara al tiempo de la Historia.

Le pidieron las manos,

porque para una época difícil

nada hay mejor que un par de buenas manos.

Le pidieron los ojos

que alguna vez tuvieron lágrimas

para que contemplara el lado claro

(especialmente el lado claro de la vida)

porque para el horror basta un ojo de asombro.

Le pidieron sus labios

resecos y cuarteados para afirmar,

para erigir, con cada afirmación, un sueño

(el-alto-sueño);

le pidieron las piernas

duras y nudosas

(sus viejas piernas andariegas),

porque en tiempos difíciles

¿algo hay mejor que un par de piernas

para la construcción o la trinchera?

Le pidieron el bosque que lo nutrió de niño,

con su árbol obediente.

Le pidieron el pecho, el corazón, los hombros.

Le dijeron

que eso era estrictamente necesario.

Le explicaron después

que toda esta donación resultaria inútil.

sin entregar la lengua,

porque en tiempos difíciles

nada es tan útil para atajar el odio o la mentira.

Y finalmente le rogaron

que, por favor, echase a andar,

porque en tiempos difíciles

esta es, sin duda, la prueba decisiva.

Los Aldeanos: "El Socialismo en Tiempos del Colera: Toda Una Nación"

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La columna de Cubanalisis

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]
¨Saturno jugando con sus hijos¨/ Pedro Pablo Oliva

Seguidores

Carta desde la carcel de Fidel Castro Ruz

“…después de todo, para mí la cárcel es un buen descanso, que sólo tiene de malo el que es obligatorio. Leo mucho y estudio mucho. Parece increíble, las horas pasan como si fuesen minutos y yo, que soy de temperamento intranquilo, me paso el día leyendo, apenas sin moverme para nada. La correspondencia llega normalmente…”

“…Como soy cocinero, de vez en cuando me entretengo preparando algún pisto. Hace poco me mandó mi hermana desde Oriente un pequeño jamón y preparé un bisté con jalea de guayaba. También preparo spaghettis de vez en cuando, de distintas formas, inventadas todas por mí; o bien tortilla de queso. ¡Ah! ¡Qué bien me quedan! por supuesto, que el repertorio no se queda ahí. Cuelo también café que me queda muy sabroso”.
“…En cuanto a fumar, en estos días pasados he estado rico: una caja de tabacos H. Upman del doctor Miró Cardona, dos cajas muy buenas de mi hermano Ramón….”.
“Me voy a cenar: spaghettis con calamares, bombones italianos de postre, café acabadito de colar y después un H. Upman #4. ¿No me envidias?”.
“…Me cuidan, me cuidan un poquito entre todos. No le hacen caso a uno, siempre estoy peleando para que no me manden nada. Cuando cojo el sol por la mañana en shorts y siento el aire de mar, me parece que estoy en una playa… ¡Me van a hacer creer que estoy de vacaciones! ¿Qué diría Carlos Marx de semejantes revolucionarios?”.
¨La patria es dicha de todos, y dolor de todos, y cielo para todos, y no feudo ni capellaní­a de nadie¨ - Marti

"No temas ni a la prision, ni a la pobreza, ni a la muerte. Teme al miedo"
-
Giacomo Leopardi

¨Por eso es muy importante, Vicky, hijo mío, que recuerdes siempre para qué sirve la cabeza: para atravesar paredes¨Halvar de Flake [El vikingo]

"Como no me he preocupado de nacer, no me preocupo de morir" - Lorca

"Al final, no os preguntarán qué habéis sabido, sino qué habéis hecho" - Jean de Gerson

"Si queremos que todo siga como está, es necesario que todo cambie" - Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

"Todo hombre paga su grandeza con muchas pequeñeces, su victoria con muchas derrotas, su riqueza con múltiples quiebras" - Giovanni Papini


"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans" - John Lennon

"Habla bajo, lleva siempre un gran palo y llegarás lejos" - Proverbio Africano

"No hay medicina para el miedo" - Proverbio escoces

"El supremo arte de la guerra es doblegar al enemigo sin luchar"
- Sun Tzu

"You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother" - Albert Einstein

"It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office" - H. L. Menken

"I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented" - Elie Wiesel

"Stay hungry, stay foolish" -
Steve Jobs

"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years ther'ed be a shortage of sand" - Milton Friedman

"The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less" - Vaclav Havel

"No se puede controlar el resultado, pero si lo que uno haga para alcanzarlo" -
Vitor Belfort [MMA Fighter]

Liborio

Liborio
A la puerta de la gloria está San Pedro sentado y ve llegar a su lado a un hombre de cierta historia. No consigue hacer memoria y le pregunta con celo: ¿Quién eras allá en el suelo? Era Liborio mi nombre. Has sufrido mucho, hombre, entra, te has ganado el cielo.

Para Raul Castro

Cuba ocupa el penultimo lugar en el mundo en libertad economica solo superada por Corea del Norte.

Cuba ocupa el lugar 147 entre 153 paises evaluados en "Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia 2007"

Cuando vinieron

Cuando vinieron a buscar a los comunistas, Callé: yo no soy comunista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los sindicalistas, Callé: yo no soy sindicalista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los judíos, Callé: yo no soy judío. Cuando vinieron a buscar a los católicos, Callé: yo no soy “tan católico”.
Cuando vinieron a buscarme a mí, Callé: no había quien me escuchara.

Reverendo Martin Niemöller

Martha Colmenares

Martha Colmenares
Un sitio donde los hechos y sus huellas nos conmueven o cautivan

CUBA LLORA Y EL MUNDO Y NOSOTROS NO ESCUCHAMOS

Donde esta el Mundo, donde los Democratas, donde los Liberales? El pueblo de Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan los Green, los Socialdemocratas, los Ricos y los Pobres, los Con Voz y Sin Voz? Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan el Jet Set, los Reyes y Principes, Patricios y Plebeyos? Cuba desesperada clama por solidaridad.
Donde Bob Dylan, donde Martin Luther King, donde Hollywood y sus estrellas? Donde la Middle Class democrata y conservadora, o acaso tambien liberal a ratos? Y Gandhi? Y el Dios de Todos?
Donde los Santos y Virgenes; los Dioses de Cristianos, Protestantes, Musulmanes, Budistas, Testigos de Jehova y Adventistas del Septimo Dia. Donde estan Ochun y todas las deidades del Panteon Yoruba que no acuden a nuestro llanto? Donde Juan Pablo II que no exige mas que Cuba se abra al Mundo y que el Mundo se abra a Cuba?
Que hacen ahora mismo Alberto de Monaco y el Principe Felipe que no los escuchamos? Donde Madonna, donde Angelina Jolie y sus adoptados around de world; o nos hara falta un Brando erguido en un Oscar por Cuba? Donde Sean Penn?
Donde esta la Aristocracia Obrera y los Obreros menos Aristocraticos, donde los Working Class que no estan junto a un pueblo que lanquidece, sufre y llora por la ignominia?
Que hacen ahora mismo Zapatero y Rajoy que no los escuchamos, y Harper y Dion, e Hillary y Obama; donde McCain que no los escuchamos? Y los muertos? Y los que estan muriendo? Y los que van a morir? Y los que se lanzan desesperados al mar?
Donde estan el minero cantabrico o el pescador de percebes gijonese? Los Canarios donde estan? A los africanos no los oimos, y a los australianos con su acento de hombres duros tampoco. Y aquellos chinos milenarios de Canton que fundaron raices eternas en la Isla? Y que de la Queen Elizabeth y los Lords y Gentlemen? Que hace ahora mismo el combativo Principe Harry que no lo escuchamos?
Donde los Rockefellers? Donde los Duponts? Donde Kate Moss? Donde el Presidente de la ONU? Y Solana donde esta? Y los Generales y Doctores? Y los Lam y los Fabelo, y los Sivio y los Fito Paez?
Y que de Canseco y Miñoso? Y de los veteranos de Bahia de Cochinos y de los balseros y de los recien llegados? Y Carlos Otero y Susana Perez? Y el Bola, y Pancho Cespedes? Y YO y TU?
Y todos nosotros que estamos aqui y alla rumiando frustaciones y resquemores, envidias y sinsabores; autoelogios y nostalgias, en tanto Louis Michel comulga con Perez Roque mientras Biscet y una NACION lanquidecen?
Donde Maceo, donde Marti; donde aquel Villena con su carga para matar bribones?
Cuba llora y clama y el Mundo NO ESCUCHA!!!

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