It’s hard to crawl the Internet today without running across something like this…
Wikipedia and several other sites are “blacked out” to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA — an odious piece of legislation that would allow domain names to be erased from the web without due process of law.
Accidentally run afoul of the bill’s copyright provisions — an incredibly easy thing to do — and the home page of your website might look something like this:
Not that this is deterring members of Congress determined to get the bill passed.
“Due to the Republican and Democratic retreats taking place over the next two weeks,” says its sponsor, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Tex.), “markup of the Stop Online Piracy Act is expected to resume in February.”
“It’s D.C. versus Silicon Valley in the SOPA fight,” observes colleague Greg Grillot. “You have Google, Mozila, Wikipedia, Reddit, Firefox and Boing Boing against it. And how many D.C. shills for it?”
“It’s a true war: the last bastion of creative/productive ingenuity in America versus the swamp of D.C.’s parasitic, industry-conflicted bureaucracy.”
Is D.C. winning?
Last year, Census data revealed Washington moved past San Jose as the wealthiest U.S. metropolitan area.
Meanwhile, we see the House will likely vote today against raising the debt ceiling, which Uncle Sam is once again hitting.
It’s purely symbolic: Under the debt-ceiling deal reached last August, the president need merely notify Congress that he’s going to raise it; it’s up to both houses to vote against it. With the Senate under the control of the Democrats, that won’t happen.
The $1.2 trillion increase coming soon should be enough to tide over Uncle Sam until… oh, right around Election Day. And that increase would have to be passed the old-fashioned way.
Next crisis, please…
“While Washington has spent the last year (and much of the last quarter-century) fighting about the national debt, most of our leaders have blithely ignored America’s staggering level of household debt,” writes American University history professor Andrew Yarrow.
Time was Americans observed National Thrift Week along with Ben Franklin’s birthday, which was yesterday. Now Americans are once again raiding their savings to get by.
“In an ominous sign for America’s economic growth prospects,” Reuters reported yesterday, with no reference to Ben Franklin, “workers are paring back contributions to college funds and growing numbers are borrowing from their retirement accounts.”
Indeed, the savings rate has fallen back to December 2007 levels — right when the official “recession” began.
Addison Wigginfor The Daily Reckoning
Addison Wiggin is the executive publisher of Agora Financial, LLC, a fiercely independent economic forecasting and financial research firm. He's the creator and editorial director of Agora Financial's daily 5 Min. Forecast and editorial director of The Daily Reckoning. Wiggin is the founder of Agora Entertainment, executive producer and co-writer of I.O.U.S.A., which was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival, the 2009 Critics Choice Award for Best Documentary Feature, and was also shortlisted for a 2009 Academy Award. He is the author of the companion book of the film I.O.U.S.A.and his second edition of The Demise of the Dollar, and Why it's Even Better for Your Investments was just fully revised and updated. Wiggin is a three-time New York Times best-selling author whose work has been recognized by The New York Times Magazine, The Economist, Worth, The New York Times, The Washington Post as well as major network news programs. He also co-authored international bestsellers Financial Reckoning Day and Empire of Debt with Bill Bonner.
i wonder if people are raiding their retirement accoutns are not the same people who have been edged out of the labor market restructuring and can find no way back into employment OR if the absoute idiots who suddenly discovered debt was bad during the early days of the great correction have now suffered from a relapse of their attention deficit disorder and diverted their attention to the next shiny toy. oh boy will they be surprised yet again – its like pulling the same trick over and over again on a two year old.
My chickens don´t scratch for food if I give them corn-meal, even though bugs and worms are there to be found. Financial credit is corn-meal. It runs out. Chickens don´t plant corn. It´s bug time.
Grillot’s quote nails it, and maybe even understates it:
Hopefully the clowns in DC don’t get to push a similarly worded bill through later this year.
Pingback: » Embattled Washington: From SOPA to the Debt Ceiling
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