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Thursday, March 5, 2009

England Swings (For The Fences)

I've got to give it to The Bank Of England. Looking down the barrel of an economy killing deflationary super recession they chose to create eighty-billion pounds on the authority of the government. That's not issue bonds, but essentially print the cash. Of course they don't really make banknotes anymore, but just flash it into existence on the bank's computers.

Printing money in time of crisis has a bad reputation (deserved), but could be a sure cure for what ails us if not overdone. Trillions of dollars in equity have evaporated form the balance sheets of American banks. Tens of trillions of dollars in equity have flown into the aether from the retirement accounts of middle America. Those trillions of dollars gone into the realm invisible represent real money, and the foundation of the economic system. It is impossible to understate the hit we have all taken. Critics of this idea of money creation by fiat will call up visions of third world basket cases that try to print their way out of economic disaster. Fair enough, but nobody since the Great Depression has tried it in a first world economy. England will be a great test bed for this obvious fix. It has been said before that Americans will always do the right thing, after trying everything else.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

They Done Good

As much as I love to gripe about the crappy service and lack of knowledge by the floor people, especially at consumer electronics stores, I have to give an attaboy for the folks at the University City Apple Store. My Daughter has my old MacBook, and as an aging laptop is want to do, it is developing "issues". First the hard disk developed "the click of death". No argument, no runaround. Apple replaced the drive in a day and she went happily, if lacking her un-backed up data. Three weeks later she had a connectivity problem with her Airport card, which turned out to be a snafu with the cable company's equipment. While visiting the "Apple Genius Bar" she mentioned that her battery was not keeping a charge, and presto! a new battery is provided.

I will report the folks I dealt with knew their stuff, and were able to correct the problems in short order without consulting a manager or requiring the machine be sent off to a repair center. Yes, we pay a premium for Apple product design and service, but in my experience it's been well worth it.