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‘Harsh Weather Tests Optimism Over Economy’

From a ‘never say die’ Reuters:

Harsh weather tests optimism over U.S. economy

By Lucia Mutikani | February 24, 2014

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Unusually cold weather will take a bite out of U.S. economic growth this quarter, but a rebound seems likely on the horizon and expectations for stronger growth this year have not changed.

It never stops. Obama’s economy always faces new headwinds. And now it turns out that even Mother Nature is racist. But don’t worry. ‘Prosperity is just around the corner.’

Economists estimate that freezing temperatures and the ice and snow storms that have blanketed much of the nation will shave as much as half a percentage point from gross domestic product in the first quarter.

That comes on top of the drag from efforts by businesses to sell off bloated inventories and a one-time hit from the expiration of benefits for the long-term unemployed…

And the sequester. And don’t forget the government shutdown. And then there is the drought in California…

"The slowdown is testing everyone’s optimism about the economy, but so far it’s just a soft patch. The economy will regain strength," said Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody’s Analytics in West Chester Pennsylvania…

And the run of weak data looks set to persist, with severe weather again dominating in February.

"Weather can … affect the economic data when it departs significantly from seasonal norms," said David Mericle, an economist at Goldman Sachs in New York. "February looks likely to be the harshest month of all this winter, suggesting the worst might be yet to come." …

Gosh, past Presidents like Bush had it easy. They only had to deal with things like the Oil Boycotts and 9/11. Obama has to deal with cold weather.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, February 25th, 2014. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “‘Harsh Weather Tests Optimism Over Economy’”

  1. geronl

    Socialists-communists in the Soviet Union always blamed weather for their droughts

    • captstubby

      “the worst might be yet to come.” …

      odd that Droughts and famines are so severe on the Progressive, socialist, and communist’s watch.
      “never let a good catastrophe go to waste. ”

      President Herbert Hoover offers plans for relief of individuals and businesses affected by a series of devastating droughts. The droughts, combined with a major stock market crash in October 1929, resulted in dire economic conditions in the country that lasted throughout the early to mid-1930s, an era known as the “Great Depression.”
      In 1930, the drought conditions had caused bankruptcies among small farmers who were then forced off their lands in search of work. A domino effect resulted in layoffs of workers in farm-related industries and agricultural banking. These unemployed agricultural workers flooded a labor market already suffering from job losses due to the stock market crash of 1929. In addition, water levels in some places shrunk to the point where public health was threatened by diseases caused by stagnant water.
      During the early years of the Depression, livestock prices dropped disastrously. Officials with the New Deal believed prices were down because farmers were still producing too many commodities like hogs and cotton. The solution proposed in the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933 was to reduce the supply.
      So, in the late spring of 1933, the federal government carried out “emergency livestock reductions.” In Nebraska, the government bought about 470,000 cattle and 438,000 pigs. Nationwide, six million hogs were purchased from desperate farmers. In the South, one million farmers were paid to plow under 10.4 million acres of cotton.
      The hogs and cattle were simply killed. In Nebraska, thousands were shot and buried in deep pits. Farmers hated to sell their herds, but they had no choice. The federal buy-out saved many farmers from bankruptcy, and AAA payments became the chief source of income for many that year.
      Droughts and famines in Russia and the Soviet Union tended to occur on a fairly regular basis, with famine occurring every 10–13 years and droughts every 5–7 years.
      The first famine in the USSR happened in 1921-1923
      The second Soviet famine happened during the collectivisation in the USSR. In 1932-1933 confiscations of grain and other food by the Soviet authorities.
      The industrialisation had a heavy cost for the peasantry, demographically a backbone of the Ukrainian nation. To satisfy the state’s need for increased food supplies and to finance industrialisation, Stalin instituted a programme of collectivisation of agriculture as the state combined the peasants’ lands and animals into collective farms and enforced the policies by the regular troops and secret police.
      Those who resisted were arrested and deported and the increased production quotas were placed on the peasantry. The collectivisation had a devastating effect on agricultural productivity. As the members of the collective farms were not allowed to receive any grain until sometimes unrealistic quotas were met, starvation in the Soviet Union became more common. In 1932–33, millions starved to death in a famine known as Holodomor or “Great Famine”. Scholars are divided as to whether this famine fits the definition of genocide.
      The last major famine to hit the USSR “began in July 1946, reached its peak in February–August 1947 and then quickly diminished in intensity, although there were still some famine deaths in 1948″
      The situation spanned most of the grain-producing regions of the country: Ukraine, Moldavia and parts of central Russia. The conditions were caused by drought.
      Between 1946 and 1947 there have been over 300,000 recorded deaths linked to starvation …from 28 January 1947, Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic surpassed planned productions of butter (by 33.2%), sunflower oil (by (by 39.5%), meat products (by 32.5%), canned food (by 101.9%). This and multiple accounts of survivors of that period leads to conclusion that soviet policies (confiscation of reserves) were the main cause of the famine in USSR.
      The Great Leap Forward of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) was an economic and social campaign by the Communist Party of China (CPC) from 1958 to 1961. The campaign was led by Mao Zedong and aimed to rapidly transform the country from an agrarian economy into a communist society through rapid industrialization and collectivization. The campaign caused the Great Chinese Famine.
      Estimates of the death toll range from 18 million to 45 million.
      Economist account “shows that Mao’s slaughter was caused in considerable part by terror-starvation; that is, voluntary manslaughter (and perhaps murder) rather than innocuous famine.”… notes that local party officials were indifferent to the large number of people dying around them, as their primary concern was the delivery of grain, which Mao wanted to use to pay back debts to the USSR totaling 1.973 billion yuan. In Xinyang, people died of starvation at the doors of grain warehouses. Mao refused to open the state granaries as he dismissed reports of food shortages and accused the peasants of hiding grain.
      the blame squarely on Maoist policies, such as diverting agricultural workers to steel production instead of growing crops, and exporting grain at the same time,
      … research uncovered that some 22 million tons of grain was held in public granaries at the height of the famine, reports of the starvation went up the bureaucracy only to be ignored by top officials, and the authorities ordered that statistics be destroyed in regions where population decline became evident.

      Badbaado is a refugee camp located outside of Mogadishu, Somalia. It formed as a result of the 2011 East Africa drought and famine, and now houses roughly 30,000 refugees.
      Food aid is available for refugees there, but its supply has been tenuous due to the policies of al-Shabab.The limited access to food has been a source of violence in the camp, and there has also been looting by freelance militias and government forces. Due to the unsafe conditions, some refugees have fled Badbaado to seek other camps.
      In mid-2011, two consecutive missed rainy seasons precipitated the worst drought in East Africa in decades.
      A consequence of the collapse of governmental authority that accompanied the civil war was the emergence of piracy in the unpatrolled Indian Ocean waters off of the coast of Somalia.

      from various on line sources.

  2. captstubby

    fascist dictator use’s seasonally adjusted unemployment figures to achieved a remarkable propaganda political victory.

    “… the economic miracle that was apparently taking place in their country. When Hitler came to power early in 1933, German unemployment stood at just over six million. By the time the world descended on Berlin
    for the Olympic Games in 1936 that had fallen to two million.”
    But was it an economic miracle?

    “There were a number of factors responsible for the drop in numbers, not all of them the sign of a burgeoning economy. Jews had lost their citizenship and were therefore not included in the unemployment figures, even though they had also lost their jobs under the Nazis. Women were removed from the statistics. And the threat of a concentration camp place for the ‘workshy’ presumably encouraged people to take whatever job was going. In March 1935, Hitler announced that he would introduce military conscription; thousands of young men would soon be removed from the unemployment figures when they were drafted into the army. And an army needs weapons, so the increase in munitions workers further reduced the figure.”

    Hitler’s Olympics

    The Story of the 1936 Nazi Games

    Anton Rippon




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