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Friday, October 4, 2013


A few days ago I posted on

Well, we are into day four, the stock market actually went up today, and world markets are mostly doing well...except Japan, which slumped to a four week low of 14024 today:

Note that at the end of 1989, the Nikkei hit an all time high just below 39,000, sinking to as low as 7054 on 10March2009 (the Fukushima cataclysm occurred on 11March2011).  What has this got to do with our government shutdown?  Nothing at all, so back to the USA.

There are 1.8 million Federal civilian workers.  Nearly half work for our Defense and Veteran Affairs Departments.  Our total population is 314 million.  Roughly 0.8 million are now being furloughed, or 0.0025% (that's one fourth of one percent) of us.  This number depends on who you ask, but, around 150 million are working in the country, with 11 million (7.3%) unemployed.  Therefore, our unemployment rate ticked up to 7.8% if you count this furloughed group of civilian feds.

How much, then, are "we" saving by not paying these non-essential workers?  I find this rather high, but as best as I can determine, the average federal employee has a total compensation of $120,000/year.  Read that article and you figure out this figure.  Thus, taxpayers are saving $263 million/day, or almost $100 billion, if this goes on for a year.  Sure, our economy will suffer, but these are non-essential workers.  Actually, the last time there was a shut-down, Congress retroactively paid all those who got furloughed, so they got a free vacation!

  • 97% of 18,134 at NASA
  • 95% of 8,709 at HUD
  • 94% of 16,205 at the EPA
  • 0%  of 522,144 for the Post Office (they are self-funded)
  • 0%  of 535 members of Congress
  • Hard to say, as parts of the USDOE work on multi-year funding, but eventually 69% of the 13,814 will be sent home.
This is Friday, so I ask you, who is this?

Susan Bennett, the voice of SIRI.  If you own an iPhone, you would have by now no doubt gotten exasperated with her.  She asks me questions at the most inappropriate times and never seems to provide a helpful answer.


Tropical Storm Karen now at 65 MPH, will probably not quite become a hurricane, but will soon begin to influence Louisiana, with the eye still scheduled to zoom over Pensacola:

Two serious storms are in the West Pacific.  Typhoon Fitow is now at 100 MPH, will skirt North Taiwan, then crash into China near Wenzhou early Monday:

Right on the heels of Fitow, Tropical Storm Danas will become a typhoon and head straight for Naha, Okinawa, then up the chain to Kyushu, probably easing west into the Sea of Japan:


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