Big wave of Pa. jobless exhausts benefits checks - (finance.yahoo.com) Pa. braces for economic impact as 1st big wave of jobless exhausts benefits checks. Thousands of jobless Pennsylvanians are joining the growing ranks of people around the country who are exhausting unemployment benefits, as some experts worry about another blow to a stumbling economy. Gov. Ed Rendell said 17,800 Pennsylvanians exhausted their jobless benefits in the week that ended Saturday, the first big wave of Pennsylvanians to do so. He urged legislators to pass a bill to extend the benefits. Around the country, the number of people exhausting their benefits is piling up. By the end of September, more than 500,000 people will exhaust their benefits checks, with the biggest groups in Pennsylvania, California and Texas, according to estimates by the National Employment Law Project, an advocacy group for low-wage workers based in New York City. That number will nearly triple by the end of the year, the group said. Economist Mark Price, of the Harrisburg-based Keystone Research Center, which is affiliated with organized labor, said the loss of that spending money in such a large quantity is likely to force businesses to lay off employees, deepening the economic doldrums. "As those people stop spending, it will mean businesses have less income and they'll start cutting back workers or hours," Price said. "We're still in a situation that it's not clear we've hit bottom, and this is going to push us further down." As part of the federal stimulus law, states can offer an extra 20 weeks in federally funded benefits. Most states have accepted the offer, although the extended benefit is triggered when a state's unemployment rate reaches certain benchmarks and not all states have met the criteria to offer it. Many unemployed Pennsylvanians currently are eligible for up to 72 weeks of benefits, including 13 from the stimulus law. The state unemployment rate just reached the three-month average of 8 percent, qualifying residents for another seven weeks once legislation pending in the state Senate is approved.
Orwellian Comments - Vice President Biden: ‘We Have to Go Spend Money to Keep From Going Bankrupt’ - (Mish at globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com) Inquiring minds are flabbergasted over the latest comments from Vice President Joe Biden: ‘We Have to Go Spend Money to Keep From Going Bankrupt’ Vice President Joe Biden told people attending an AARP town hall meeting that unless the Democrat-supported health care plan becomes law the nation will go bankrupt and that the only way to avoid that fate is for the government to spend more money. “And folks look, AARP knows and the people with me here today know, the president knows, and I know, that the status quo is simply not acceptable,” Biden said at the event on Thursday in Alexandria, Va. “It’s totally unacceptable. And it’s completely unsustainable. Even if we wanted to keep it the way we have it now. It can’t do it financially.” “We’re going to go bankrupt as a nation,” Biden said. “Now, people when I say that look at me and say, ‘What are you talking about, Joe? You’re telling me we have to go spend money to keep from going bankrupt?’” Biden said. “The answer is yes, that's what I’m telling you.” This is reminiscent of the My Lai massacre and the destruction of various Vietnamese villages in the Vietnam War. An American major after the destruction of the Vietnamese Village Ben Tre: "It became necessary to destroy the village in order to save it." On March 16, 1968, a company of U.S. soldiers went into the village of My Lai 4, in Vietnam. A soldier later testified, "The order we were given was to kill and destroy everything that was in the village. It was clearly explained that there were to be no prisoners." "We met no resistance and I only saw three captured weapons. We had no casualties. It was just like any other Vietnamese village-old papa-sans, women and kids," a soldier said describing what they found on entering My Lai. "As a matter of fact, I don't remember seeing one military-age male in the entire place, dead or alive." The U.S. soldiers started killing everyone in sight. A U.S. soldier later testified: "There was an old lady in a bed and I believe there was a priest in white praying over her... [U.S. Lt.] Calley pulled the old man outside. He said a few more words to the monk. It looked like the monk was pleading for his life. Lt. Calley then took his rifle and pushed the monk into a rice paddy and shot him point-blank." Lt. Calley was the only soldier convicted of any of the atrocities that took place at My Lai. Despite being convicted of killing over 100 unarmed Vietnamese, Calley served only two days in jail! Nixon then ordered him put under house arrest at Fort Benning, where he could live in a nice apartment, cook his own food, receive guests, watch TV and go to town for supplies (accompanied by MPs). Calley was released from house arrest in just over three years and was able to make large amounts of money speaking to right-wing groups. Biden's comments are also right up there with President Bush who abandoned free-market principles to save the economy. Please consider Bush says sacrificed free-market principles to save economy. US President George W. Bush said in an interview Tuesday he was forced to sacrifice free market principles to save the economy from "collapse." "I've abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system," Bush told CNN television, saying he had made the decision "to make sure the economy doesn't collapse." "I am sorry we're having to do it," Bush said. Here is an audio clip of Biden.
Apple Computer company making a move to Northern Nevada - Channel ... - (www.krnv.com) Apple Computer Company is moving to Nevada. The California-based computer maker has set up ties with a Reno-based company that will manage it's cash and short term investments. Apple is following a number of companies who are picking up and leaving California and moving to Nevada. Apple has incorporated Braeburn Capital, an Asset-Management Company already in Reno to manage its finances. By moving to Reno, the company will keep it from certain California taxes. The advantage for a company moving to Nevada is that the state has no corporate income tax and no capital gains tax.
Commercial brokers are swimming in empty space - (www.latimes.com) In a distressed market, the stakes are higher and deals are more elusive. Real estate broker Carl Muhlstein maneuvered his silver BMW convertible through downtown Los Angeles traffic, one hand steering the car and the other pressing a cellphone to his ear. "Come on," he teased. "Insult me with an offer." While some who swim the deep and often lucrative waters of commercial real estate have retreated to the golf course, Muhlstein is among those pushing on -- joking, nudging and networking in hopes of making deals in a time of no deals. "The conversations are tougher, the challenges are greater, the stakes are higher," Muhlstein said, as odds grow that a multimillion-dollar transaction may end badly for somebody. "Will the landlord lose the building? Will the tenants stay in business?" Among his tasks is finding a buyer for Park Fifth, a stalled $1-billion high-rise condominium and hotel development proposed for a block next to Pershing Square downtown. At Playa Vista, he advised the owners of the enormous Spruce Goose hangar -- built by famed aviator Howard Hughes -- to take it off the block because prices are depressed. Muhlstein tries to use humor to cope with hard times in the commercial real estate industry, a business in such pronounced distress that some experts predict its problems will thwart the nation's hopes for an economic recovery. Nearly 16% of office space in Los Angeles County is sitting vacant as tenants close up shop or move out of expensive properties. Nearly a third of the space around up-market Playa Vista sits empty; office buildings in the Inland Empire and parts of Orange County are completely vacant. It all adds up to less work for brokers like Muhlstein, who make their living facilitating the sale and leasing of these properties. Commercial brokerages such as CB Richard Ellis, Grubb & Ellis, Jones Lang LaSalle, and Cushman & Wakefield, where Muhlstein works, have contracted during the recession, collectively shedding thousands of workers as profits plummeted in the slow market. Many brokers, who survive on commissions, are among the departed. Still, brokers are a persistent lot, drawn to the business by the opportunity to earn lots of money. When the market is good, top producers can earn $100,000 to more than $1 million a year on commissions of 2% to 5% on the value of a deal. The risky, competitive field is still made up almost exclusively of men, a disproportionately high number of whom learned to battle at the top levels of collegiate sports. Although brokers sometimes dress casually to woo laid-back clients in creative fields, the default uniform is a dark, well-tailored traditional suit, starched shirt with French cuffs and perhaps a pocket square to complement an expensive tie.
California lost 66,500 jobs in June - (www.sfgate.com) he recession continued to punish California as employers cut 66,500 jobs in June to put the state at an unemployment rate of 11.6 percent, the nation's sixth highest. A report issued Friday by the Employment Development Department in Sacramento also hints at how the state budget deficit will affect California, which lost 6,700 government jobs in June. "That's the tip of the iceberg," said Stephen Levy with the Center for the Continuing Study of the California Economy in Palo Alto. Levy said layoffs and furloughs of state workers will worsen the state economy, which has already been hit harder than the nation as a whole by the collapse of the housing bubble. The U.S. unemployment rate is 9.5 percent. Michigan has the nation's highest rate of 15.2 percent. The state's unemployment rate in May was 11.6 percent, officials said Friday, correcting the 11.5 percent figure they had reported last month. Friday's report held no good news for the Bay Area's three major metropolitan regions. Unemployment now stands at 11.8 percent in metropolitan San Jose, which consists of Santa Clara and San Benito counties. The two counties have lost more than 15,000 manufacturing jobs in the last year. Metropolitan San Francisco, which includes Marin and San Mateo counties, continued to have the best showing in bad times with a June unemployment rate of 9.2 percent. But the West Bay has been losing jobs in retail and professional and business services. In metropolitan Oakland, which encompasses Alameda and Contra Costa counties, job cuts in construction contributed to a June unemployment rate of 11.1 percent. Chris Thornberg, a California analyst with Beacon Economics, said job losses in the state seem to be slowing, but he does not expect hiring to come back strongly. "Jobless recovery is a term you're going to be hearing a lot," he said.