U.S. consumer confidence surges to 18-year high

“A measure of U.S. consumer confidence rose in October to an almost two-decade high, as Americans expected economic and jobs growth to power ahead despite recent stock-market volatility,” Sharon Nunn reports for The Wall Street Journal. “The Conference Board on Tuesday said its index of U.S. consumer confidence rose to 137.9 in October, the highest level since September 2000.”

“Americans’ assessment of present conditions remained positive, primarily because of strong employment growth, according to Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at the Conference Board,” Nunn reports. “‘The Expectations Index posted another gain in October, suggesting that consumers do not foresee the economy losing steam anytime soon,’ she said. ‘Rather, they expect the strong pace of growth to carry over into early 2019.'”

“The Conference Board’s October survey found the proportion of consumers expecting fewer jobs in the coming months declined and the percentage of consumers foreseeing an improvement in income prospects rose,” Nunn reports. “Despite an apparently slowing housing market and rising interest rates, the proportion of consumers who say they plan to buy a home in the next six months rose in October. A larger proportion of Americans said they planned to buy a car in the coming months.”

“Measures of how consumers feel about the economy climbed after President Trump was elected in 2016 and have been buoyed by strong economic growth, low unemployment and rising wealth. Gross domestic product grew at the fastest pace in nearly four years in the second quarter and continued to grow at a solid 3.5% annual rate from July through September,” Nunn reports. “The unemployment rate is 3.7%, the lowest level since 1969.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Strong and rising U.S. consumer confidence and high employment bodes very well for Apple which has unveiled a slew of new products, including iPhone Xs, Xs Mac, and XR, MacBook Air, iPad Pro, Mac mini, and more ahead of the all-important Christmas shopping season!


    1. Some of you have been complaining that I don’t give President Trump any credit for his accomplishments. So, here you go:

      He has not screwed up the economic recovery that began six years before he was elected.

      He normalized neonazis by insisting that some of those marching around Charlottesville chanting, “Jews will not replace us” were actually “very good people.” This week, a neonazi murdered eleven people while chanting, “All Jews must die.” The President’s very first reaction was to shift the blame to the synagogue for not having armed guards (note that it took a squad of trained SWAT officers in battle gear to subdue the subject and four of them were seriously wounded in the process).

      He did get around later to condemning violence and anti-semitism. He did not condemn xenophobia, although the shooter seems to have targeted Jews largely for supporting migrants. On the contrary, the President has stepped up his frenzied attacks on immigrants following the shooting.

      You will say that he cannot be held responsible for a random crazy person. The case here, however, is that the President’s “Gaslight” offensive helped drive the man crazy. I agree that the President did not intentionally provoke violence, just as nobody intends to cause a fatal car crash. Like a chronic speeder, he was merely reckless about the clear risks his conduct created. That is still unacceptable. We had two other recent examples:

      He told a crowd this week that he (obviously a white guy) is absolutely a nationalist. Then a self-identified white nationalist tried to break into a black church in Kentucky before he went to a nearby Kroger store and murdered two elderly black people, one of them a man who was shopping with his 12-year-old grandson. When the police arrived, the nationalist told them, “Don’t shoot. White people don’t kill white people.”

      He has, for over two years, attacked public figures on a well-defined “enemies list,” calling them evil, accusing them of crimes, and demanding that somebody do something about them. He has offered to pay the legal expenses of anyone who beats up a protester at one of his rallies and last week congratulated someone who body-slammed a reporter. This week, a fervent supporter who took him seriously sent fifteen pipe bombs through the mail, exclusively to people on the list. The President’s initial response was to criticize the news media for devoting more coverage to the attempted assassination of a former President and other public figures than to his campaign rallies. He has yet to acknowledge that a press organization was among the victims.

      He has repeatedly characterized the press as “enemies of the people” who have unjustly criticized the government. He has suggested limiting their existing First Amendment protections by expanding their liability beyond just intentional lies. He stated this week that it isn’t fair for the press to criticize his unsubstantiated statements, because “There’s no proof of anything.” He mocked a disabled reporter. He has mocked many female reporters. He praised the famous body-slam. Then he claimed surprise that Saudi Arabia actually did something about its press critics, as have a number of other US allies. His attacks have, if anything, intensified after the bombs were sent.

      He has promised at every rally from 2015 until today that he would help people with preexisting health conditions to get more affordable health insurance. This week, his Justice Department continued their legal battle to remove any legal requirement that insurance policies cover preexisting conditions at all, much less without increased premiums.

      He promised during his election campaign that he would protect the rights of transgender individuals (whether you agree with the promise or not, he made it). This week, his administration floated plans to define transgender individuals out of legal existence.

      He repeatedly promised that his tax reform would benefit the middle class as much as extremely rich people. This week, he tacitly admitted that it did not do that and promised an additional 10% cut for individual taxpayers. Obviously, there is no way to pay for this except by either further ballooning the deficit or following Senator McConnell’s suggestion to cut entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare. Either approach would violate the President’s campaign promises.

      He has, ever since his inauguration, insisted that he is in complete control of the US economy, and deserves credit for everything; others (like previous administrations, Congress, and the Federal Reserve) have no influence and deserve no credit at all. Just this last week, the markets shed all of their gains over the last ten months.

      So, Thank You, President Trump!

      1. Bravo, TxUser! I always enjoy reading your fact-based, rational posts. They are so much more compelling than the rah rah cheerleader crap coming from the remaining Trump worshipers.

        Anyone could verify for themselves that the consumer sentiment surveys the Conference Board takes have been on the steady rise since Q2 2009, after plummeting during the last year of the lame duck Bush II years.

        Did y’all know that the Conference Board also does a Global Consumer Confidence Index? That’s more important to global companies like Apple. The US seems to be an outlier, posting consumer confidence even higher than China. It will be very interesting to see if the rest of the world is being more realistic about the fallout of Trump’s unilateral tariffs (i.e., a tax on consumers) when they start kicking in. Give it some time.

        You’re welcome.

      2. I know that you are an intelligent human being. Very intelligent. I want to be able to have constructive discussions with people who see the world as you do. I want you to understand my point of view. The problem is the ad hominem attacks. President Trump normalized Neo-Nazis and so on.

        Seriously? This is the most twisted wall of text you’ve ever blasted out. I feel sorry for you.

        You’re so off base, so wrong, I just don’t know what to say to you.

        1. If describing someone as “a very nice person” is not normalizing them, how would you define it?

          I’m not attacking the President’s character, which is the definition of an ad hominem attack. He may be “a very nice person.” I am condemning his actions, which I believe to be profoundly dangerous to our constitutional republican form of government.

        2. “You’re so off base, so wrong, I just don’t know what to say to you.”

          Nothing to say theloniousmac.

          We are dealing with the most intellectually dishonest LYING self described “straight white male conservative Republican” on MDN.

          “The problem is the ad hominem attacks. President Trump normalized Neo-Nazis and so on.”

          Exactly! In his response he did not even acknowledge his most irresponsible and false statement to DATE. Instead, he ignored his attack on the president, did not respond to you and deflected on the definition of an ad hominem attack, his specialty.

          For TxUser to post that tedious volume of negativity in a mocking snide tone on an article that is 100% positive for all Americans is the height of irresponsibility!

          Like Hillary who is also intelligent, the most important factor is missing. Knowledge without justice is cunning not wisdom.

          “This is the most twisted wall of text you’ve ever blasted out. I feel sorry for you.”

          Absolutely. You are a better man than yours truly. I don’t feel sorry for his purposeful dishonest liberal ass one atomic particle…

          1. As a former, unofficial holder of the ‘Sycophant Lapdog’ title, I now see where I went wrong and why you are a truly great ‘Sycophant Lapdog.
            Simply, I just wasn’t craven enough. I now realize embracing bat-shit craziness, sociopathic behavior and unhinged divisive rhetoric are the new WMDs. That possessing an enquiring mind, wanting equitable settlement of past wrongs in a fractured society, that not going to Nazi Revivalist meetings, that my liberal ‘live and let live’ attitude is just so wrong and demented…means I was but a mere pretender.
            Thank goodness for that.
            ‘I bow to thee my master”

        3. Well then your problem is not just with TX, but with over 50% of the voters who did ‘not’ vote for Trump, who, I would hazard a guess, think exactly the same thing – Trump’s language is a problem. It’s not even controversial since he has rejected every opportunity to tone it down. So rather than ‘twisted text’ as you see it, everybody else is thinking “Seriously? You don’t see it for what it is? Just explain how that can happen”
          I highly doubt they would accept you patronizing them from you side of the line either.

    2. How much do they pay you to cheer lead for Trump on tech blogs? Let me know so i can get in on it. I hate Trumps lies and total lack of facts but your loyalty tells me the money must be good.

    3. Goeb: “Great news for ALL in the U.S.A. thanks to the leadership of President Donald J. Trump…”

      BlackRock CEO Larry Fink: “… the biggest threat today is the $670 billion deficit this year.” “What I worry about is to sell out debt, especially at the long end will mean higher interest rates because people will demand a higher premium and that’s one of the fundamental issues that can mute and can harm our equity markets in the long-run.”

      Goeb seems unable to temper his enthusiasm for the Trump cult of character from the brewing storm clouds that industry leaders see gathering quickly amidst the horrid federal mismanagement that Trump has shown.

      Goeb then goes on to attack me as a lib, democrat, partisan, Crisis Newz Network addict or whatever, but in fact I have been harping fiscally conservative messages forever, and never espousing either corrupt political party. When will Goeb lift his blindfold? Hard to do when you’re a hardened cult member.

      1. “BlackRock CEO Larry Fink: “… the biggest threat today is the $670 billion deficit this year.”

        Where was the Fink the last eight years? For the FIFTH time, how much did the national debt increase under President Obama?…

        1. It is you who is out of orbit, Goeb. No matter what objective facts anyone brings to the table, you dismiss them in an endless attempt to protect your cult leader.

          As everyone with a brain knows, Obama signed bipartisan bills to bail out too-big-to-fail banks as a direct result of the Bush implosion (not counting unfunded Medicare Part D, a $US 5+ trillion dollar war bill, and veterans benefits). Many of us are on record opposing much, not all, of that spending spree. But it wasn’t Obama’s idea. He merely signed the bill AFTER Bush started the ball rolling with autumn 2008 TARP program authorizations. Hank Paulson (a republican) literally begged for congress to stimulate the economy with a huge spike in spending and a slashing of Fed rates. At least the Obama administration was competent enough to get paid back for the bank & industrial loans they did extend.

          Fast forward to Candidate Donny, and the exact same message was offered: corporations needed stimulus, lower bank rates, and so on. Dumbo Donny called the 2-4% GDP growth of the prior 7 years to be weak, and promised to triple the rate of growth with classic trickle-down methods, giving money to the corporations that already hoarded trillions of dollars overseas. Odd to not pay down accumulated debt when he inherited a growing economy. What’s the excuse for Con Don to spend MORE than Obama had to? The Orange Liar signed the biggest deficit budget in US history despite promising to pay down federal debt!!! Then he followed it up with agricultural welfare to shore up the wreckage from his ill-planned tax hikes on imports and resultant trade wars. Oops, taxes didn’t “pay for themselves”. Debt is now growing faster than ever in US peacetime history. Dumbo Don promised he was going to wind down foreign adventures and hunker down behind a $US 11 billion wall, and neither have happened. Not a single promise kept, except multimillionaire tax breaks. The real chant is “me first”, not “America first”. That’s what he, and you, really stand for. Selfish greed while the debt grows to unsustainable levels. One has to wonder who pays trolls like Goeb to continue to support such dramatically hazardous fiscal policy, which is in fact WORSE in the long term than the prior several administrations. It should be noted that Slick Willy Clinton actually signed a balanced budget. Dumbo Donny cannot, as he has no fiscally responsible bone in his body.

      2. Earth to Mike, come in please. This is planet Earth calling Mike, come in please. Earth to Mike, do you copy?

        I think we lost him. The Obama national debt question was just too much for him to handle…

    1. Where do you get your #FakeNews?
      Barack Hussein Obama added $1.7 trillion to our debt in his first year alone (4x faster than any of his predecessors); then added many more $1 trillion deficits. Nobody has made it run that fast since.

      Obama is the king of U.S. federal debt.

      1. @ Barry:

        so now the debt clock is fake? The trade imbalance has grown under Trump and Trump just added a $1.5 trillion new debt to the national credit card, plus he’s demanded increased military spending which has broadened the current budget deficit. All this on top of the “Obama debt” which came directly as a result of two unfunded Bush wars plus 8 years of underregulated lending also under Bush. When the bill came due, Obama added those items to the federal credit card because he had no choice — the fed chair and both parties pushed for the bill which bailed out corporate America from their own stupidity. So now you blame Obama for 7 years of steady growth.

        You don’t get out much do you?

        1. “Barack Hussein Obama added $1.7 trillion to our debt in his first year alone (4x faster than any of his predecessors); then added many more $1 trillion deficits. Nobody has made it run that fast since.
          Obama is the king of U.S. federal debt.”

          Absolutely correct, Obama is the KING of debt more than 43 presidents before him COMBINED!

          I have asked Mike three times how much President Obama added to the debt. Each time, NO ANSWER.

          Mike’s response to you asking a parallel question:

          “so now the debt clock is fake?”

          DEFLECTIVE Mike, that’s NOT what Barry posted and he DID NOT comment on the “debt clock.” You STILL can’t answer the Obama debt question.

          My question: Why under two years of President Trump do you all of a sudden breathlessly care about the debt clock. Where were you the last eight years, hmmm?

          Let me guess, MORE crickets : : : …

          1. Again you repeat the partisan canards. You have a tenuous grasp of mathematics and history.

            Let’s say, for example, you spend $3 Trillion on your credit card in 2002 without planning it on your household budget. To hide the bills from your wife, you don’t report it for a full 7 years and instead take out loan after loan. Do you understand how the concept of compound interest works? You go ahead and do the calculation assuming the 10 year T-note rate from 2002 through 2009. How much do you now owe in 2009? Do the goddamn math, Goeb.

            Then explain to us all how instantly when walking in the door, you feel it is appropriate to assign Obama responsibility for that bill.

            Also explain to us why you have never cared about the massive deficits run by every president of both corrupt parties for two generations, except Slick Willie Clinton of course, who you go out of your way to attack whenever possible.

            I’ll wait.

            1. already replied many times, you refuse to read what doesn’t align with your preconceived biases. Your elementary school narratives don’t hold water, never did. That’s the problem with your cult. You think everything is binary when the world is much more complex.

    1. What happens when people take off the race colored glasses and start seeing opportunity, success, and happiness instead of the anger, hate, and the victim ideology of the left? Change happens. Real change.

      1. Well let’s all do that.

        I’ll follow you and Trump in explicitly condemning anyone who chants “Jews will not replace us” in rallies. I want Trump to grow a pair and say he doesn’t want the votes of neo-nazis and racist xenophobes.

        You first.

        A real leader builds bridges, not walls.

    2. Excellent. Facts backed by actual video evidence, but the haters here still down vote you.

      As Rush keeps saying over and over. “We have to not only beat the Liberals but defeat them entirely.” They are a disease of the mind.

      Keep posting Theloniousmac, I enjoy your posts. One of the few smart ones on here.

    3. Yippee.

      May Herr Trump’s inspirational words live forever. For example,

      On Kanye West:
      “Kanye’s a great guy,” he said of the eccentric rapper. “A little different, do we say? He’s a little different. But he’s a smart guy and a good guy … So I think Kanye, he may be the most powerful man in all of politics.”

      On … beauty?:
      “I can just look at the incredible beautiful and handsome faces. Today, you’re not allowed to use those terms because they’ll say you’re – but you know what, I’ll use it anyway, beautiful and handsome. Look at all these handsome faces … It’s not politically correct. We have to bring that back into the world of being OK, right?”

      On his endless “America First” rants:
      “Racist? Racist? Why is that racist?” “Here we are, I think, does everyone in this room agree? You’re living in America. America first, right?”

      On George Soros, investor, immigrant to the US, and political activist:
      silence when the “Lock Him Up” shout was uttered

      On why blacks should support Trumpism:
      “What the hell do you have to lose?”

      On African American culture:
      “I think, frankly, the African American community – it’s not a point I ever bring up because you don’t associate it with anything except for the prisoners themselves – but the African American community appreciates that maybe more than anything we’ve done. Maybe I should start bringing it up.”

      On prison labor:
      “incredible” “And I don’t mean everyone because there’s no – even in this room we probably have a couple of bad ones, right? What do you think? Are there any bad ones?”

      On Lincoln:
      “Honest Abe. I wonder if he was really that honest. But you know what, let’s assume Honest Abe was Honest Abe.”

      What an inspiration to people of all races. I guess if this is all it takes to pump up consumer optimism poll, we should take a more critical view of those polls. Things like tariffs and deficits matter to me , because they will hurt everyone in America except the billionaire elitists like Trump who launder their money wherever they want.

    1. Another journey into the fact-free zone. The article you linked was written less than 5 weeks into the Trump presidency, before any statistics had even been reported for that period. The author specifically says, “We will have to wait for the FBI and ADL statistics” to see if there is a change in anti-Semitic activity.

      Those statistics have been available for some time. According to the ADL, there was a 60% increase in anti-Semitic incidents in 2017 over 2016, and a 90% increase in such incidents in K-12 classrooms. The ADL Senior VP for Programs attributed the increase to “the normalization of hate and extremism both online and offline. The normalization of rhetoric, including retweets of individuals like David Duke, from posts and restatements that are associated with white nationalists in this country — has almost become normal or part of a global discourse.”

        1. Well that is an interesting twisted article Barry. Can we assume that if bomb threats to your household increased 60% in a year, you would not feel threatened?

          Your article goes to great pains to toss FUD on reported incidences:

          “The ADL report also includes 204 anti-Semitic incidents that occurred on college campuses, nearly double the amount in 2016. But the ADL doesn’t distinguish between members of the alt-right and Leftist pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel activism.”

          So in other words, unless we have categorical names correctly attributed to the attackers, then the physical assaults, threats, and bomb scares didn’t happen?

          You obviously are incapable of putting yourself in the shoes of another person. And no, turning temples into fortresses isn’t the answer. Get a clue.

      1. The article you cite, Barry, is another trip into the world where “You can’t prove anything.”

        It attacks the JDL statistics for their methodology. Specifically, the organization counts any attack on a clearly identified Jew or Jewish institution as anti-Semitic even if the criminal claims that he had some other motivation. Gee, whiz, nobody ever lies when they are facing an enhanced sentence for a hate crime, do they?

        The article does not suggest any alternative source of more reliable statistics. It can’t, because everybody has regarded the JDL numbers as the gold standard for many years.

        More importantly, the JDL hasn’t changed its criteria, which it has been applying for decades. If it overcounted episodes in 2017, it must have done the same in 2016 and prior years, too. So even if you disagree with the absolute numbers, there was still a relative increase of 57% in just one year. Episodes on campus grew even faster.

        The writer can suggest no explanation for why the JDL is reporting such a huge increase other than to suggest that there is a Jewish conspiracy to elect Democrats.

          1. Goeb, you have it EXACTLY BACKWARDS, as usual.

            The ADL compiled the hate crime reports both nationwide and in leading cities. FACT.

            The ADL reported the victims of the threats/crimes/attacks as recorded in police reports, by race, religion, sexual orientation, etc. In New York City, for example, antisemitic crimes have been growing in proportion to national trends, now running about 10 times racial incidents and about 60% more than sexuality hate crimes. AS CONFIRMED BY THE NYPD.

            The bullshit opinion piece attacking the media for reporting about these antisemitic hate crimes is DEFLECTION, entirely focused on FUD. The author all but insinuates that if the bomb didn’t actually go off, then the bomb scare didn’t happen. That is sick and Barry apparently believes that stupidity.

            You obviously can’t see the obvious xenophobia rising because 1) you don’t care about your fellow Americans, and 2) you’re not being threatened directly. The culture of America, which from its founding strove to be multiracial and religiously tolerant and welcoming to new immigrants, has turned sour. Isolationism is being touted as good despite infinite evidence to show how crippling such policies are in the long run.

            Now even the US Constitution guaranteed right, freedom of religion, is under attack by the blowhard self-proclaimed christian & anti-immigrant elements. This isn’t a left and right thing. This is an “I got here first, you can’t participate in my game” thing. Trump has literally pushed the notion that everyone outside the wall must lose for the US to “win”, whatever his definition of winning or greatness is this week. He doesn’t actually define it, because if he did, it would expose clearly how racist and elitist he actually is. So he titillates his flock of xenophobic sheep with an endless stream of tough guy talk. Token appearances at funerals don’t make up for the wave of intolerance he has helped build. The POTUS can’t even curtail his xenophobic rants when he goes off script, he enables the culture of intolerance that is now as bad as I have ever seen in my lifetime.

            To put a finer point on it: There are several visibly intolerant people here endlessly addling their real and imaginged political foes, waterboys for the hateful Trump rhetoric. Trump, Barry, Goeb, TheloniusWannabe, Think, Get A Life — all of you have pasted the label “liberal” on whoever criticizes Herr Trump, you blindly repeat hateful FUD and paste labels (“if you’re a lib, you are always wrong”, “CNN is evil”, etc.) You feel empowered to spew intolerance because your POS president does so ad nauseum. You do it without referencing or acknowleging objective facts. You can’t even see how far gone you are. That is the very definition of a cult. For your own sake, change the channel and read something positive for a change. Immigrants aren’t out to kill America, they want to join America and make it stronger. Jews don’t rule the world. And if you don’t like imported goods, don’t buy them. Sell your Chinese made iPhones immediately, because non-Christian economic enemies of the USA built them. Seriously….

            1. Yeah, whatever you say Mike. Oh, I don’t read your tedious posts anymore since I have sworn off you and your buddy tedious posts. I find volumes of partisan brainwashing and dishonesty not worth my time…

        1. Responding directly to an assertion of fact by providing evidence that it is incorrect is not “deflection.” Like most Americans, I do not agree that proof, evidence, and facts are all the same thing as unsupported opinion. To refute such opinions with facts is exactly on point.

          To respond directly to an claim that I am engaging in ad hominem attacks by saying that what I was doing does not fit the definition is not “deflection.” Again, it is exactly on point.

          What do you think “deflection” means?

    2. YOU haven’t discussed them. Most of us find the number unacceptable and have proposed sensible gun safety measures, (like banning bump stocks nationwide, something Trump promised but has reneged). Local communities in the aftermath of disaster after disaster have proposed reforms — and guess which congressional group and non-elected lobby organization blocks all reform?

      Yeah, you don’t WANT to talk about it. Violence is A-OK if it isn’t on your street.

  1. The whole Obama administration was an “anti-Semitic incident.”

    Obama worked harder for the mullahs than he did for any American. Hell, he secretly and illegally sent $1.7 billion in skidloads of cash to our avowed Islamic terrorist-supporting enemies in Iran.

    1. Barry, you are truly clueless. Get off the kool aid and read the real story.

      Obama may not have been very savvy about it, but the money was in repayment of US debts. Also, unlike some administrations, the cash was budgeted and publicly acknowledged.


      According to the LA Times:

      Treasury Department spokeswoman Dawn Selak said in a statement late Tuesday that the cash payments were necessary because of the “effectiveness of U.S. and international sanctions,” which isolated Iran from the international finance system.

      The $1.7 billion was the settlement of a decades-old arbitration claim between the U.S. and Iran. An initial $400 million of euros, Swiss francs and other foreign currency was delivered on pallets Jan. 17, the same day Tehran agreed to release four American prisoners.”

      “The money came from a little-known fund administered by the Treasury Department for settling litigation claims. The so-called Judgment Fund is taxpayer money Congress has permanently approved in the event it’s needed, allowing the president to bypass direct congressional approval to make a settlement. The U.S. previously paid out $278 million in Iran-related claims by using the fund in 1991.”

      So why don’t you blame the G.H.W. Bush administration for setting up the Judgement Fund. Why don’t you blame the US fumbling mideast policy since the 1970s? Why not condemn every administration for failing to resolve political conflict and incurring the debt in the first place? Why don’t you blame yourself for not reading the true backstory?

      I get the impression that you are here not to discuss how to Make America Great (by my measure, a country that repays its debts and treats others honestly), but rather you are here to attempt to score political points. Too bad you are unarmed with facts. Try again after you do your homework, Barry.

          1. Ha ha;)

            Whatever tickles your Fancy!
            Cant provide evidance other than 8 years of observation and deductive reasoning!
            Doubt the indoctrinated worshipers will have the resources..

  2. Most of you libs are a bunch of close minded Fanatical losers!
    Its mind boggling.

    Your behavior and mindset is a total embarrassment!

    Scary and sad is that you don’t have slightest clue as to how terrifyingly fanatical you are!

    Go ahead and continue being the ignoramus hypocritical idiots you are and shoot yourselves in the foot!

    There is no cure for Stupid…
    And with every passing day you prove,more and more, what prejudiced, bigoted, indoctrinated fools you are!
    (Thanks for making it so easy to see)
    …And then you guys have problems with fanatics of the middle-east and elsewhere???? LOL

    Look in the mirror first before u go that far fools.


    Get a life and a brain or just run to your mommies, have them feed you some milk and cookies and later tuck you in bed with some fairytales ..
    That is where you belong !
    Just spare us from your fanatical Bull-C—!

    You and only YOU are responsible for putting yourselves in such position to deserve the words above!

    1. Define socialism for us, Ed.

      America since its inception has been a mixed economy with both socialism and capitalist elements.

      Hint: “Support Our Troops” is promoting socialism

      Apple laundering its money through Ireland, the Jersey Islands, and the Caribbean is global capitalist. Trump building a golf course in Scotland, global capitalism.

      Trump rhetoric: isolationist and xenophobic

  3. Let’s return to the original topic: consumer confidence. This is a survey intended to gauge the near term potential buying habits of consumers. Anyone who understands the methodology knows it is a LAGGING INDICATOR of economic events and trends.

    In addition to the Conference Board, there is an additional survey to reference, the UM Consumer Sentiment survey. Here is a graph of its index going back to 1978:


    As anyone with eyes can see, consumer sentiment has grown continuously from the valley in Q1 2009, the end of the Bush II crash. There was no sudden trend change when Trump walked into the White House, though obviously the right wing press went into orgiastic convolutions knowing they had a rubber stamp willing to pass any GOP legislative bill. So far the tax cut hasn’t really kicked in yet. You can all come back and tell us how much more take home pay you or your workers got for fiscal 2018. At least 2/3 of the corporate cut went into stock buybacks, in a vain attempt to buoy stock prices and preserve executive bonuses in the face of trade headwinds. You will soon see how easy it is to “win” trade wars.

    Look again at the macro consumer sentiment trend. You can see that there was a strong economic optimism trend all through the Clinton years. Bush II was unfortunate enough to preside over the 9/11/2001 disaster but he compounded the problems with reckless wasteful military spending, unfunded Medicare entitlement spending, and total lack of oversight of predatory lenders in the banking sector. Oh my, isn’t that what Trump proposes? Increased military spending, less regulation, no cuts to entitlements? How is he going to pay for this largesse?

    The trend in the UM index actually peaked in Feb 2018, and as Trump’s isolationist sabre rattling and tariff talk has quenched the 2017 tax cut sugar high, and markets have now erased the 2018 gains. Are we at a tipping point? Nobody can predict how trade wars will turn, but when the bottom falls out, which will happen eventually given the stupid short sighted fiscal path the US has been on for at least one generation, it ain’t going to be pretty. After the trade war crash, then consumer sentiment will fall. There is one space grey lining to the cloud however: maybe Apple will see fit to bring its sky high prices back to reality.

    You did notice that Apple bigly bumped up the prices on its Chinese assembled products? Why do you suppose that is? Because Apple has no competition? No, because Apple wants to leave room for product discounts that will be needed if the promised Trump tariffs bite hard.

    I suppose the Trumpanzee crowd assumes that self-imagined autocrat Trump will grant an exemption for Apple, picking winners and losers. Such market manipulation would never be acceptable under any prior republican administration, but these are interesting times.

    1. Mike, why couldn’t he grant an exemption for Apple?

      If he can repeal the Citizenship Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment by Executive Order (as he says he can), why not the Equal Protection Clause? If you can’t give preferential treatment to some companies, industries, races, and religions—and disadvantage others—based on your personal preference without any basis in credible evidence, what’s the point in being President?

      The same goes for the Due Process Clause. If another clause can be repealed by fiat, why not the one that limits his ability to “lock her up,” and lock YOU up, without an indictment, trial, or any of those other libtard technicalities?

      Either you preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, or you make it up as you go along. If it’s the latter, let’s hope Apple is among the chosen. I doubt you or I will be.

      1. Indeed. Throughout his entire life Trump has repeatedly displayed ignorance and disdain for the rule of law. As an entitled spoiled brat who won the birth lottery, he actually thinks his daddy’s wealth entitles him to autocrat status in all matters private and public.

        The sham of a business council Trump attempted to use for a photo op has resulted in nothing. Trump is too ignorant and has too little attention span to listen to industry input. So he has turned down the advice of every experienced business leader as well as federal economists who could have provided him, at his disposal, the best business intelligence and statistics available anywhere. While Trump watches the bimbos on Faux News, he relies on Wilbur Ross to figure out how to run economy. The results look increasingly modeled on middle to late Ming dynasty isolationism, Great Wall and all.

  4. “Hint: “Support Our Troops” is promoting socialism.”

    Only a Libtard would confuse patriotism and nationalism with socialism. The U.S. is NOT a socialist nation just because taxpayers fund some programs. Get a grip…

    1. Hey goeber, you seem confused again. When arguing your point, you don’t get to selectively choose when socialism applies and when it doesn’t. When taxpayers fund it, a nonprofit government agency manages it, and citizens get basically equal access or benefit from it, then it is socialist. Roads, gps, municipal utilities, military, libraries, police, some schools and some hospitals—- all socialist economic mechanisms. All part of your country. If those entities are well managed by professionals and overseen by democratically elected representatives of the people, the results can be excellent.

      On the other hand you seem to think putting everything for sale to the highest bidder is a superior exonomic model. I wonder if you understand what that means. Would you truly prefer to have to pay a toll to a for-profit feudal undemocratic corporation for absolutely everything? that model has not worked well because citizens then have no voice, only rich corporate entities dominate political processes. Look how many industries have been consolidated into duopolies or defacto monopolies. The individual has zero voice against an unelected multinational corporation. As a Mac user, you can see how little Tim Cook cares about your wants and needs. You don’t have more freedom, you actually become a dependent on what corporate executives offer you. By distracting you with cheap entertainment, are you happier? Under democratic socialism, people do have a voice and they can choose health or safey or quality of life over profit maximization.

      Maybe you should visit us in the Netherlands to see how it works.

      1. Great insights, Poel!

        I’ll offer another analogy. Consider football: part of the ticket price fans pay to watch the game goes to pay the officials. Do you think the game would be fair or even fun to watch if there were no officials, no rule enforcement? Nobody would play the game as it devolved into bloodsport and fans would seek other entertainment.

        Some say the problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money. That’s ironic because money is an artificial construct — coins only signify trust. Holding bags of wealth is only useful if you can trust your neighbor to honor the value of your money — our money, the people’s money. People who repeat the bullshit that their money smells like roses and inferior people who aren’t in a position to line their pockets with massive weath must be defects to be ignored or worse. With great wealth comes great social responsibillity. Billionaires got rich overwhelmingly by self-serving business practices that quite often get outlawed eventually. Jay Gould: insider trading. Rockefeller: racketeering. de Beers: slave labor. Gates: monopoly abuse of power. The list goes on.

        Those who demand that greed is good and therefore unbridled capitalism with no rules and no bounds would be their ideal fantasy world always fail to explain why it is economically efficient to rely on people like Fuckerberg, Gates, Page & Brin, Musk, or inheritors of great wealth through no real effort of their own (Paul Allens’ surviving family, Laurene Jobs, Donald J. Drumph, Paris Hilton, etc) to control so much wealth that they have the health and well being of literally millions of people in their hands. These same people worship the US Constitution and law enforcement while backing views from the Trumpists and alt right that rules are too hard to follow and should be abandoned so we can make more money. Their personal heroes are CEOs.

        They fail to see that the modern corporation is feudalism, pure and simple. It is nondemocratic and it is not even recognized in the US Constitution. Because the artificial legal construct of a corporation exists primarily to make money, and specifically to make money for the good old boys at the top, while enduring into perpetuity, that means that wealth concentration allows these ruthless greedy few enormous powers which they use to manipulate poltiics, manufacture crises, distract the public, misinform voters, greenwash their pollution, scatter their labor, and launder their self-granted compensation.

        “But investors get a return” they will argue, “without financial reward nobody would work!” That again is bullshit. Does Tim Cook work harder or smarter if you give him $2 million or $25 million in annual compensation? Why? How much influence do investors really have on corporate boards? How many investors can name all the members on any corporate board in which they invest? Most investors can’t even name the companies in which they invest because Wall Street launders investments through complex financial vehicles specifically to distance investors from the actual work and actual risk. You are not allowed to see how the sausage is really made.

        Greed is not good. Economic self interest must be checked against the public good by efficient regulation that responds to the people. Socialism can be poorly implemented, or it can be well run, just like capitalism. But with unrestrained capitalism, you have pure feudalism and abuses of power with no recourse for justice. With democratic processes, checks and balances, then cooperative public/private partnerships, research, and grand projects and programs for the public good can generate benefits for generations of citizens. Corporations in a competitive environment sometimes do this, you can always find examples, but the trends are clear. Corporations don’t give a shit about national wellbeing. US corporate leaders sold out to China for cheaper labor and environmental law avoidance decades ago. Corporations like Apple hide billions overseas when they obviously have plenty of money to build stuff in its home country.

        The answer is not taxes on trade (tariffs). The answer is not to exempt undemocratic corporations from even more taxes. The answer is to ensure that all companies big and small have equal opportunity, globally consistent rules, incentives to hire locally, and severe punishments when they abuse the public trust. It means that big bad gvmint will have to be funded with competent managers and regulators, and it means that corporate regulation needs to become more comprehensive so slimy fat cats don’t win the economic game via foul play.

      2. It’s GoeB. Don’t be disrespectful.

        “As a Mac user, you can see how little Tim Cook cares about your wants and needs.”

        Yes, we agree 100% on that one.

        “On the other hand you seem to think putting everything for sale to the highest bidder is a superior exonomic model.”

        No, the lowest bidder wins.

        “Under democratic socialism, people do have a voice and they can choose health or safey or quality of life over profit.”

        First off the U.S. is NOT a socialist nation although Obama tried and failed for eight years. President Trump will have none of it, un-American and against our Constitution.

        What voice do you have? Pay the exorbitant high taxes or go to jail. Socialism by definition is wonderful in theory. But unlike many academic experiments it falls short of the promise in real life. Your socialist masters tell you what to think, what to do, what to pay and you say you have a voice. How nice, but it changes NOTHING.

        Visit the Netherlands? Well, thanks for the offer but I’ll pass. As a devout Catholic, leftist hedonistic obsessions such as open drug use and prostitution is not my cup of tea…

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