Breakfast Links

Good thing the US is a republic, and not a democracy right?  From Alexis de Toqueville

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations has been 200 years.”

“I do not know if the people of the United States would vote for superior men if they ran for office, but there can be no doubt that such men do not run.”

“Americans are so enamored of equality; they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom.”

“Democracy extends the sphere of individual freedom, socialism restricts it. Democracy attaches all possible value to each man; socialism makes each man a mere agent, a mere number. Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word: equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.”

Can’t wait for the new Department of Business.  Brand new bureaucracy will get things moving for sure.

The Dow is not loving the election results, or Europe.  But mostly the election results.

An economist thinks about the fiscal cliff.  Another one thinks it’s bunk.  My question is if we have continued growth of GDP at 2% or less, are we in a recession, or stagnation?  If stagnation, what’s causing it?  It’s certainly not a lack of government spending Mr. Keynes.  CBO warns.

Key factors affecting grain markets. (audio link)

Former Goldman trader accused of fraud.  Now he works for Morgan Stanley. ($GS, $MS, $ES_F)

A long post for those of you without power on the east coast-even works in apartments!

CME sues the federal government over Dodd-Frank reporting rules. ($CME)

More than 45 companies announced layoffs yesterday.  Most due to Obamacare and coming tax increases.  More to come.

California and Illinois have liberal super majorities.  Let’s see how they solve their fiscal crisis.

Gay Marriage won big on ballots this time.  Voters are evolving on this issue.  Religious types are against it, and I empathize with their position-although I don’t think gay marriage threatens them.  Younger millennials are overwhelmingly for it.  So, eventually it’s coming.   It’s really not about marriage.  It’s just to keep divorce attorneys busy.  New streams of income.

The Tea Party struck out in November.

I don’t get all the calls for bipartisanship all of a sudden.  What’s changed?  Even if Romney would have won, the Senate would have been Democratic.  Do you think they would be bullied into bipartisanship?  Doubt it.

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