• THE GRAY ECONOMY IS COMPRISED OF UNDER-EMPLOYED WORKERS, “either jobless, too discouraged to seek work, or working less than they’d like to or in off-the-books jobs” – some two million in LA County and over 16% statewide, tied with Nevada for highest rate in the country. Employers are “still shy about hiring back the full-time workers they spend the recession replacing with automation & outsourcing” and now operating with a “contingent workforce which allows more financial flexibility, investing less on training… obligated for paychecks only when there’s a demand for labor… and saving some $17 billion by not paying into California or federal social insurance programs last year… Accordingly, more workers are forced to turn to odd jobs and becoming on-call workers, toiling without job security, benefits or career development opportunities”; Freelancers – predominantly individuals working for themselves without employees – now represent over half of California ‘businesses,’ and could comprise half the entire U.S. workforce by 2020.           [LOS ANGELES TIMES – Aug 3, 14]
  • GREEN TEA “HAS NOW BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH A 54% REDUCTION IN RISK OF DEVELOPING COGNITIVE DECLINE – the effects of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.” The compound in green tea has been found to “prevent plaque buildup and trigger production of new brain neurons… by scavenging oxygen-free radicals, restoring cells to health and reducing inflammation.” A recent four-month study of 1,000 Japanese above age 70 found that two cups daily improved cognitive odds by 46%, more than four times the beneficial result for subjects who drank black or oolong teas.  [LIFE EXTENSION – Aug 14]
  • AMERICA’S OUTSTANDING MONETARY BASE NOW EXCEEDS $4 TRILLION AND RISING by another $40 billion a month, “resulting in a staggering increase in excess bank reserves held by twelve ‘money center’ banks.  While 95% of reserves exceed statutory requirements… this has led to almost no increase in some $21 trillion of bank lending capacity… Perhaps the great unanswered question in capital markets history” is whether, when and the degree to which lending will eventually expand; and, how can this not result in “staggering inflation for everything funded? … It’s a massive windfall for debtors like the U.S. government and those holding real estate assets, but disastrous to those on fixed incomes and lenders or owners of fixed-rate assets… While the Fed claims to be the guardian against such inflation… its hands are actually quite tied… as it has the dual policy mandate of spurring economic growth.” Get prepared.  [THE LINNEMAN LETTER – Summer 14]
  • NEWEST TECHNOLOGY INNOVATIONS: (1) a wireless-enabled shoe which coordinates with Google maps to “vibrate and tell users when & where to turn to reach their destination… so no need to stop and check a smart-phone as they move.” $100/pair available next month trade-named Lechal.  (2) ‘Pee Power Renewable Energy’ from the 1.7 trillion gallons of urine produced yearly around the globe. ‘Urinetricity’ is a process which can take “up to week-old urine from a healthy individual of average height & weight…and recharge commercially available batteries including mobile phones… Power output is three times higher than other waste product tested (food scraps, dead insects, grass cuttings, etc)… so the BioEnergy Team next plan to examine the potential of feces as a possible power source… since abundant availability and a self-regulating supply chain might also provide a commercial incentive to build more toilets for the 2.5 billion people without access to proper sanitation.”  [THE WEEK – Aug 8, 14]
  • “WHEN WE’RE HOLDING THE HAMMER, THEY’LL ALL LOOK LIKE THE NAIL” – a great country song encapsulating the outrage at federal government intrusion evidently got the writer (a 26-year old Tennessee football coach) fired because some parents complained. http://video.staged.com/dtglobal59/tennessee_football_coach_fired_for_making_obama_so
  • THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEK:   “A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.”

   The world is not elementary school. A (surprising) French cartoon ridiculing Hamas strategy:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SS93A6GNws