Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Norway building border wall after invasion of 5.5 million people from Middle East and Africa into their country in only a few months time in 2015

8/24/16, "Norway builds wall on border with Russia to prevent refugee flows," Armenia News

"Norway will build a wall at Borisoglebsk — Storskog checkpoint at the border with Russia to prevent the flow of refugees, reports the RIA Novosti referring to the Reuters.

The decision raised a negative reaction from the Norwegian human rights defenders. They think that it will prevent the entry of peoples who escape persecution. At the end of last year, flow of refugees from the Russian- Norwegian border increased drastically. People from the Middle East and Africa began using the Arctic route to Europe, which is more secure. In a few months 5.5 million refugees crossed that border."


Above, 8/31/16, Roger Simon twitter


Trump pulls ahead of Hillary in North Carolina, Emerson College poll, August 27-29, 2016. Trump 45, Hillary 43, 800 likely N.C. voters. Trump leads by 11 points among independent voters: Trump 45, Hillary 34

Trump 45
Hillary 43
Johnson 8
Stein 2

Independent voters

Trump 45
Hillary 34
Johnson 14

August 27-29, 2016, 800 likely North Carolina voters, 3.4 error margin, automated voice poll, land lines only. 38.6D, 32.7R, 28.7 Ind. Male 45.4, Female 54.6 (+9.2 female). White 62.7, Black 13.7, Am. Indian 4.7, Hispanic 7.8, other 9.8

8/30/16, "Emerson College Poll: GOP holds slight lead in North Carolina Presidential and Senate Races"

Press release states Trump has a ten point lead, 47-37, among males, Hillary has a five point lead, 49-44 among females.

"Data was weighted by 2012 election results and regional weights." Subsets carry higher margins of error as sample size is reduced.


Trump and Hillary in statistical tie in Wisconsin, Marquette Poll, August 25-28, 2016. 615 Likely voters, error margin 5%, Trump 38, Hillary 41

Trump 38
Hillary 41
Johnson 10
Stein 4

August 25-28, 2016, 615 likely Wisconsin voters, land line and cellphone interviews, error margin 5%. 25R, 30D, 38 Ind.

8/31/16, "New Marquette Law School Poll finds Clinton edge over Trump narrowing to pre-convention levels among Wisconsin voters," Marquette University, Charles Franklin, Milwaukee  

"Among likely voters, Clinton receives 41 percent, Trump 38, Johnson 10 and Stein 4 with 7 percent lacking a preference. In early August, Clinton received 47 percent of likely voters, with Trump at 34 percent, Johnson at 9 and Stein at 3, while 6 percent lacked a preference. In July, among likely voters, Clinton received 43 percent, Trump 37, Johnson 8 and Stein 2....

About the Marquette Law School Poll

The Marquette Law School Poll is the most extensive statewide polling project in Wisconsin history. This poll interviewed 803 registered Wisconsin voters by landline or cell phone, Aug. 25‑28, 2016. The margin of error is +/- 4.5 percentage points for the full sample. For likely voters, the unweighted sample size is 650 and weighted sample size is 615, with a margin of error of +/-5.0 percentage points.

The partisan makeup of the full registered-voter sample, including those who lean to a party, is 45 percent Republican, 46 percent Democratic and 7 percent independent. The long-term estimate over the previous 36 statewide Marquette polls, with 32,146 respondents, is 42 percent Republican and 48 percent Democratic, with 9 percent independent. The partisan makeup of this sample, excluding those who lean to a party, is 27 percent Republican, 30 percent Democratic and 38 percent independent, compared to the long-term estimate of 27 percent Republican, 31 percent Democratic and 38 percent independent."


Trump expands lead over Hillary in USC Dornsife LA Times Daybreak Poll, August 30, 2016: Trump 45.3, Hillary 41.9

Trump 45.3
Hillary 41.9

8/31/16, USC Dornsife LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak Poll

Hillary 2.7 drop 8/26-8/30/16.

Trump 2 point increase 8/26-8/30/16


Reflecting a general trend, Trump closes 12 point gap in Reuters national poll of likely voters through August 29, 2016. Trump now 39.1, Hillary 39.7, virtual tie


Images from Reuters polling, 1397 likely voters, 5 day rolling average through Aug. 29. Trump 39.1, Hillary 39.7

8/30/16, "Reuters: Donald Trump Closes 12-Point Gap with Hillary Clinton, Now Tied," Breitbart News

"Donald Trump closed a 12-point polling gap with Hillary Clinton in five days, leaving them half a percent apart during the next two-day period, according to new polling data from Reuters.
On August 22, Clinton led Trump by 12 points, 44.8 percent to 32.8 percent. By Aug. 27, the two candidates were neck and neck.... 

By Aug. 29, Trump had nudged up again to 39.1 percent, while she was at 39.7 percent. He gained 6.7 points, while she lost 5.1 points during the entire seven-day period.
Twenty percent of the respondents declined to pick either of the two leaders in the poll of 1,397 likely voters, which was concluded Aug .29.

Trump’s support among Republicans climbed from 71 percent up to 78.3 percent. Clinton’s support among Democrats dipped slightly from 81.6 percent to 78.5 percent.

The poll reflects a general trend, in which Trump has managed to close much of the gap that Clinton opened in early August.

In July, Reuters sharply changed how it presented polling data, political strategist Pat Caddell told Breitbart Radio. “It is, beyond doubt, the most outrageous thing,” he declared. Caddell cited two examples to Breitbart News.

“On July 25, they originally reported: Trump 40.3 percent and Clinton 37.2 percent, which was a Trump margin of 2.8,” he said. “They have recalculated that now–which I have never heard of–they changed that data, to be: Clinton 40.9 and Trump 38.4, which is a 2.5 margin for Clinton.”

The July 25 Reuters poll now shows a result that reflects a 5.3 percentage point flip from the previously published results, he said.

“Now look at July 26,” he said. “On July 26 they had Trump at 41.5 percent and Hillary at 36.3. That was a 5.2 Trump margin. Then, in the new calculation, they claim that Clinton was 41.1 percent, Trump was 37.5, and the margin was 3.6 for Clinton. Same poll. Two different results. Recalculated, after you’ve announced the other results.”

“What you get is an 8.8 percentage point margin change, almost nine points swinging from one candidate, based on some phony, some bizarre allocation theory that you claim you know where these people are or you are just leaving them out,” he said. “I actually believe they are allocating them because they are claiming they are really Clinton voters and they are using something to move them to Clinton.” 

“This comes as close as I have ever seen to cooking the results,” said the legendary pollster and political consultant. “I suppose you can get away with it in polling because there are no laws. But, if this was accounting, they would put them in jail.”"


Trump has accepted the invitation to meet with Mexico's president on Wednesday, August 31, 2016

8/30/16: Trump has accepted the invitation to meet with Mexico's president:

Donald J. Trump twitter


Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Hillary lead cut in half in new national Monmouth poll August 25-28, 2016, now leads Trump by only 7 points among likely voters, 3.7 error margin-ABC News

August 25-28, 2016, Monmouth University Poll, 689 likely voters nationwide, error margin 3.7 (parag. 4). Live telephone interviews, land line and cell phone. Self identified 28R, 40Ind, 32D, p. 6. 47% male, 53% female. Poll Report with tables
8/29/16, "Hillary Clinton's Lead Cut in Half in New National Poll," ABC News, Ryan Struyk
"Hillary Clinton's wide lead over Donald Trump in the race for the White House has been cut in half, according to a new national Monmouth University poll released today. 

The Democratic nominee held a wide 50 percent to 37 percent lead in the wake of her party’s convention in a Monmouth poll in early August, but now that lead appears to have tightened to 7 percentage points -- 46 percent to 39 percent among likely voters....

The change shows some signs of a post-convention bump wearing off among likely voters: She’s lost

10 percentage points among nonwhites
9 points among college grads, 
6 points among liberals and Democrats."...


Trump leads Hillary by 2.8 points, 45.1 to 42.3 in USC Dornsife LA Times Daybreak Presidential poll, August 29, 2016

Trump 45.1
Hillary 42.3

8/29/16, USC Dornsife LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak Poll

Hillary dropped 2.3 points 8/26-8/29. 44.6 on 8/26 to 42.3 on 8/29. Trump up 1.8 in same 4 days. At the moment, Hillary seems to have a problem.   


Monday, August 29, 2016

Powerful forces have reduced working class wages around the world. US political parties thus have limited means with which to attract votes of working class white men-Newsweek, Sept. 2014, Cooper

Sept. 2014 article anticipating Nov. 2014 midterm elections and how working class white men will vote notes that powerful forces have reduced working class wages around the world: "Whichever approach is taken by the political parties to lure the white working class, it’s going to have to go up against powerful forces that have reduced working-class wages around the globe."...(subhead, "Hard Hats Are Long Gone") 

9/25/2014, "Why Working-Class White Men Make Democrats Nervous," Newsweek, by Matthew Cooper 

"Democrats Are Nervous"

"Working-class white men used to go with the Democratic Party like hot dogs and mustard. And now? Well, not so much. The complex political allegiances of noncollege voters—and particularly noncollege white men—get less attention than the rise of the Hispanic voter. The white working-class percentage of the electorate may be on the decline, but white working-class men remain a voting bloc neither party can afford to ignore....

White noncollege voters aren’t all cultural conservatives, but they often lean that way—and Obama’s progressive politics have pushed them further away from the Democrats....

The story of what makes white working-class men vote and in which direction is a complex one. They’re not monolithic by region or religion. And it’s not easy to measure them by occupation either, so pollsters use the index that’s easiest to measure and less prone to error, even though it’s less than perfect: whether they went to college....

While this might conjure up the image of a construction or factory worker, these days most noncollege white males are more likely to be found in low-end office jobs or in retail sales as cashiers—two of the fastest growing job categories in America. But what a disproportionate number of noncollege white men seem to have in common, according to polls, is a profound sense of aggrievement.... 

When asked whether government should do more to solve national problems or leave more to individuals to decide, Americans overall split, 45 percent in favor of more government intervention to 51 percent against. By contrast, a full 62 percent of white working-class men said government should do less.

“You look across the board and they’re outliers. That is really powerful, and once their income started declining, they became very receptive to Republican arguments that [the government was] taking your money and giving it to others,” says Ronald Brownstein of Atlantic Media, an expert in white working-class voting who mined the data and used the results of a Pew poll in June.

That sense of aggrievement also has a cultural element. Today it's socially acceptable to poke fun at "white men" or "white guys." For working-class white men who have seen their wages and wealth drop as the economy has come to value “brain” workers more than manual laborers, there’s no feeling of white privilege, even if their lot is far better than being a minority in poverty. Indeed, with women now more likely to enter and finish college than men, and enjoying better health and longer life expectancy, the frustration of poorly educated white men is understandable.

“If you’re a white male and you don’t have a college degree, you’re struggling and frustrated; and often you’re not going to blame yourself,” says Ed Sarpolus, a nonpartisan pollster in Michigan who has studied working-class voters.

No group has declined more in standing, notes John Lapin of the Center for American Progress, who has studied the working-class vote. Indeed, the white poverty rate is accelerating much faster than the minority poverty rate, and the white working class is among the most pessimistic groups in the country—more even than poor blacks or poor Hispanics.

Declining union membership...

But working-class whites are not the same as they were even 10 years ago. With family breakup accelerating, they’re more likely to live in single-parent households and have out-of-wedlock births at rates higher than in 1965, when Daniel Patrick Moynihan, later a U.S. senator, issued The Negro Family: The Case for National Action, his controversial report about the breakup of black families.

And there are important regional differences. Working-class whites in the South are much more estranged from the Democratic Party....An even closer parsing of data shows how the collapse of Democratic support among white working-class voters extends beyond the South to the mountain West and Plains States. The president garnered a majority in Maine and Vermont....

The big question is how Hillary Clinton might fare with these voters, should she run for president in 2016. There are some indicators in her favor. She’s part of a Clinton brand that won two presidential elections in part by minimizing the loss of noncollege white men....Whether the narrow pool of Democratic primary voters will prove representative of voters as a whole is a question that will occupy Democratic strategists between now and 2016.

Still, staffers in Hillaryland had a saying that, among women, you could tell a (white) Hillary voter by her shoes, specifically whether they’re worn out from standing much of the day, as would be those belonging to a waitress, a teacher or a nurse. But a new Quinnipiac University poll, Brownstein notes, shows her with only 27 percent of the white noncollege male vote—behind even Obama’s 31 percent.

Of course, Hillary wouldn’t need to win these voters; she would only have to stop the hemorrhaging of them to the Republicans. “She’s not going to carry [white] noncollege voters. It’s not like they have to get these voters to love them,” says Ruy Teixeira, author of several books on how the white working-class votes....

Reihan Salam of National Review and Ross Douthat of The New York Times have written, in their book Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream, that far from cultural issues being bait and switch, as Democrats charge, they are essential to working-class survival:  

Public disorder, family disintegration, cultural fragmentation and civic and religious disaffection...breed downward mobility and financial strainwhich in turn breeds further social dislocation, in a vicious cycle that threatens to transform a working class into an underclass.”

Hard Hats Are Long Gone

Whichever approach is taken by the political parties to lure the white working class, it’s going to have to go up against powerful forces that have reduced working-class wages around the globe. An economy that values more education and higher skills needs to make a special effort to assist those left behind.

The pollster Stanley Greenberg was a key architect of Bill Clinton’s 1992 election. He studied white-majority Macomb County in Michigan, which had drifted from the Democratic fold. He found what’s now a familiar pattern of alienation among working- and middle-class whites from the Democratic Party over everything from taxes to the death penalty.

He’s more sanguine than many about the Democrats’ prospects with white working-class voters and sees them, at least outside the South, Border States and parts of the Mountain West, as persuadable. “It’s where race and religion meet,” he says of those uncompetitive areas. But he thinks that when Democrats stop thinking of working-class whites as factory-floor hard hats—“They’re long gone,” he half jokes—and more likely cashiers and customer-service representatives, they’ll be able to compete more effectively for their votes.

Andrew Levison, author of The White Working Class Today: Who They Are, How They Think, and How Progressives Can Regain Their Support, shares Greenberg’s view about how many persuadable working-class voters remain. But he thinks a populist appeal isn’t enough....

It may be that, in time, demographics will settle the matter, as women and minorities vote in ever larger numbers, making the working-class white male less relevant to elections and to the economy. But no voice in American life should be ignored, even if it lacks the punch it once had.

Franklin Roosevelt lauded “the forgotten man.” (Conservatives have used the phrase, too, and did so even before Roosevelt, who popularized it.) In an ideal world, each party would engage in a contest of ideas to help working-class voters. Election Day is close, but that day is a long way off."


Trump ahead 44, Hillary 43.6, USC Dornsife LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak national poll, August 28, 2016


8/28/16, "The USC Dornsife LA Times Presidential Election Daybreak national poll"

Trump 44.0
Hillary 43.6


Sunday, August 28, 2016

At least 64 Islamic terror suspects are members of the German army which currently doesn't screen potential recruits for jihadist tendencies. Taxpayer funded army training enables terrorists to plot future murders of taxpayers in Europe or abroad-UK Telegraph, 8/28/16

8/28/16, "German army wants security checks for recruits after admitting more than 60 [ISIS] Isil suspects in its ranks," UK Telegraph, James Rothwell

"The German army has said it wants tougher security checks on recruits after admitting that more than 60 Islamists are suspected of infiltrating its ranks
In a draft amendment seen by German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, senior Bundeswehr officials said all applicants should be screened by the intelligence services for jihadist links before they begin basic training.

And they disclosed that 64 Islamists are already feared to have embedded themselves within the armed forces, along with 268 right-wing extremists and six left-wing extremists.

Terrorists are attracted to the army because they can use the training to plot future terror attacks in Germany, the document added.

“The German army trains all of its members in the handling and usage of weapons of war,” it said,[terrorists] could use those skills acquired in the army to carry out well-prepared acts of violence at home or abroad.”

The proposals would lead to a major overhaul of the country’s recruiting policy as under the current system soldiers are only checked for Islamist ties once they have enlisted.

They would also require an extra 90 military officials to be hired in order to carry out a further 20,000 checks per year.

The reforms, which would cost an estimated 8.2 million euros (£6.9m) per year, are expected to be approved by German commanders next week, Welt am Sonntag reported.

A Defence Ministry spokesman said the government was still in the process of debating the law, which if approved would come into force in July 2017. 

Germany is on high alert following a spate of deadly attacks last July, two of which were claimed by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil).

On July 18 an Afghan refugee attacked passengers with an axe on a regional train in southern Germany, injuring four people before he was shot by police.

Officials said they found an Isil [ISIS] flag in the 17-year-old’s room and it later emerged that he had pledged allegiance to the group in a video posted online.

A week later, on July 25th, a Syrian refugee blew himself up in the southern town of Ansbach, killing himself in the blast and wounding 12 others. 

When police raided his flat they found violent videos, bomb making materials and a message on his mobile phone in which he said he carried out the attack on behalf of  Isil leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Thomas de Maziere, the German Interior Minister, has already called for tougher security measures which would include a ban on the burka and legal reforms that would make it easier to deport terror suspects.

He is also in favour of a Europe-wide proposal to force the developers of encrypted messaging services such as Telegram to hand over data to the security services.

Telegram has attracted controversy in the past for being popular among Isil fighters, who use the network to trade weapons and plot attacks while remaining anonymous."

"Additional reporting by Reuters" 

Trump and Hillary statistically tied in Morning Consult national poll, August 24-26, 2016. Hillary 39, Trump 37, Johnson 8, Stein 3

Hillary 39
Trump 37
Johnson 8
Stein 3

Independent voters (p. 109)
Trump 30
Hillary 27
Johnson 14
Stein 7
Don't know, no opinion 23

Women Independent voters (p. 109)
Trump 25
Hillary 25

Men Independent voters
Trump 36
Hillary 29

August 24-26, 2016 online poll, 2007 registered voters nationwide (not stated to be likely voters), 2% error margin. 47% male, 53% female (p. 10). 35D, 33Ind, 32R (p. 10). 81% white, 9% Hispanic, 13% black, 6% other (p. 11). Country on right track 21%, country on wrong track 71% (p. 1). #1 issue economy (36%), #2 issue security (21%), p. 12. (21% in this poll didn't vote in 2012 elections, of those who did 43% for Obama, 33% for Romney. 28% didn't vote in 2014 midterms, p. 12).

8/28/16, "Trump Gains Ground on Clinton; Black Voters Still Wary," Morning Consult, Fawn Johnson

"Donald Trump trails Democratic rival Hillary Clinton by only 3 percentage points in a new national poll from Morning Consult, shrinking a deficit....

Trump’s gains on Clinton tighten to within the margin of error when accounting for other presidential candidates. In that matchup, Clinton leads Trump by just 2 points, 39 percent to 37 percent....
In a survey taken Aug. 24 through Aug. 26, Trump halved the 6-point distance between himself and Clinton from the previous week’s poll. In the most recent head-to-head matchup, 43 percent of registered voters say they will vote for Clinton, and 40 percent say they will vote for Trump; 17 percent don’t know or have no opinion.

The matchup hasn’t been this close since late July, when Morning Consult’s poll showed a 3-point Clinton lead over Trump, 43 percent to 40 percent....

The poll results come after Clinton gave her most direct speech thus far attacking Trump on his racial rhetoric, while the GOP nominee continued his bid to woo black and Hispanic voters. 

Trump’s campaign also floated new ideas about allowing immigrants who are illegally residing in the United States to stay in the country, an attempt to soften the real estate mogul’s harsh immigration rhetoric. But the mixed signals from the Trump campaign aren’t winning over immigration advocates.

Clinton has also faced questions about her ties to the Clinton Foundation while she was secretary of state.

Trump’s outreach to African American voters appears to be falling flat among that demographic, with only 5 percent of black voters saying they will vote for Trump; 79 percent of African American respondents say they will vote for Clinton, with 16 percent undecided.

Trump also significantly trails Clinton among women voters — 44 percent to 35 percent — with 21 percent saying they don’t know or have no opinion....

Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson and Green Party nominee Jill Stein are struggling to gain traction with voters and, barring a major shift, are unlikely to make the debate stage scheduled for late September. Johnson, a former Republican governor of New Mexico, has support from 8 percent of respondents, while Stein is the first choice for 3 percent of voters.

The poll was conducted among a national sample of 2,007 registered voters, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points. See toplines and crosstabs."


In 1996 when Palm Beach social clubs barred African Americans and Jews, Donald Trump sent copies of 'Guess Who's Coming to Dinner,' a film about upper class racism, to members of the Palm Beach town council and filed a lawsuit against them-WSJ 1997, Jeffrey Lord 2015

Twenty years ago in 1996 when Palm Beach social clubs barred African Americans and Jews, Donald Trump's lawyer sent copies of the film, "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner," starring Sidney Poitier, Spencer Tracy, and Katharine Hepburn, to members of the Palm Beach town council and filed a lawsuit against them:

Trump sent 1967 film

April 30, 1997, "Trump’s Palm Beach Club Roils the Old Social Order," The Wall Street Journal, by Jacqueline Bueno.

Nov. 2015 article:

11/13/2015, "When Trump Fought the Racists," American Spectator, Jeffrey Lord

"A 1997 Wall St. Journal story featured his Florida fight against anti-Semitism, racists....The WSJ story...focuses on the battles Trump faced as a new arrival to Palm Beach, including his new competition with the social clubs of the old order....

It revolves around Trump’s purchase and operation of the famous Mar-a-Lago estate, built in the 1920s by Post Cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post. Trump had recently purchased the sprawling, seaside estate and turned it into a club. This being located in upscale Palm Beach, Florida, there were other prestigious clubs in the area, clubs that catered to the old order of upper crust Palm Beach society. The problem? Quietly, other clubs had long barred Jews and African Americans— which is to say they practiced a quiet but steely racism....

The (WSJ) story, which quotes Abe Foxman, the longtime head of the Anti-Defamation League, says, in part, the following: 

"Mr. Trump also has resorted to the courts to secure his foothold here, and many residents wince at the attention his legal battles with the town have drawn-to the town in general, and to the admission practices at some of Palm Beach’s older clubs in particular.

The culture clash began to approach a climax last fall (1996), when Mr. Trump’s lawyer sent members of the town council a copy of the film “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” a film that deals with upper-class racism. Mr. Trump then approached the town council about lifting the restrictions that had been placed on the club. He also asked some council members not to vote on the request because their membership in other clubs created a conflict of interest.
Last December (1996), after the council refused to lift the restrictions, Mr. Trump filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Palm Beach, alleging that the town was discriminating against Mar-a-Lago,
in part because it is open to Jews and African Americans. The suit seeks $100 million in damages."...

In other words? In other words, long before he was running for president, there was Donald Trump battling racism and anti-Semitism in Palm Beach society. Using every tool at his disposal.

The film he chose to send the Palm Beach town council was no accident. Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner was released in 1967 and starred film legends Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, and Sidney Poitier. The Oscar-winning story revolved around a liberal, upper-class older couple who are stunned and discomfited when their daughter, played by Katharine Houghton, brings her new fiancĂ© — Poitier — home to dinner and an introduction to her white parents. As liberals, her parents were staunch supporters of racial equality and had raised their daughter accordingly. Yet suddenly, in comes the very personal reality of equality when their daughter waltzes in the door after a vacation with husband-to-be Poitier, a black widower and doctor. Soul searching about just how devoted to equality they really are ensues.

Thus it was no accident that Trump selected this movie to tweak the members of both the Palm Beach town council and
the larger white society it represented. Trump understood exactly what the game was and he would have none of it. In addition to sending a copy of the movie, he launched his lawyers, who filed that $100 million lawsuit “alleging that the town was discriminating against Mar-a-Lago, in part because it is open to Jews and African-Americans.”...

Yet here comes the utterly predictable charge of racism from

The harsh reality of the racism charge against Trump is not only that it is bogus, utterly false from start to finish. The reality is the charges of racism against Trump are coming from the one political force in the country that has a long, deep, and immutable history of racism. A racism that is no relic of a long ago past but both current and visceral, used now as it has always been used — to divide and judge by skin color for political profit.

The good news here that in Donald Trump someone-finally-is standing up to fight back. Just as he fought back all those years ago in Palm Beach when no one was looking."


Saturday, August 27, 2016

2Q 2016 US GDP revised down to 1.1% amid wider trade gap and 7.7% drop in housing construction. US economy has averaged only 1% growth for the past three quarters-USA Today, 8/26/16

8/26/16, "The economy grew a feeble 1.1% in second quarter," USA Today, Paul Davidson

"The economy grew a bit more slowly than believed in the second quarter amid a wider trade gap and weaker housing construction, leaving its third straight disappointing performance looking even more feeble.

The nation’s gross domestic product increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.1%, the Commerce Department said Friday, slightly below its previous 1.2% estimate. That matches the expectations of economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The economy has averaged about 1% growth the past three quarters, well below the roughly 2.2% yearly average in the seven-year-old recovery.

A sluggish global economy and the oil industry’s long-standing slump have pummeled U.S. exports and business investment. Those headwinds have offset strong consumer spending, which makes up about 70% of economic activity.

Last quarter, exports increased 1.2%, a bit more slowly than previously estimated, while imports rose 0.3%, up from the modest decline cited in the last tally. That widened the trade deficit, hurting growth. A strong dollar has made U.S. exports more expensive for overseas customers -- amplifying the effects of economic struggles in China and the euro zone -- while imports are cheaper for U.S. consumers.

Also, housing construction dropped 7.7%, a bigger decline than first estimated. And government spending fell 1.5%.

Business stockpiling subtracted 1.3 percentage points from growth. That’s slightly more than believed and marks the fifth straight quarter that paltry additions to company inventories have been a drag on growth.

On the bright side, consumer spending surged a robust 4.4%, a bit more sharply than first estimated....

And business investment fell 2.5%, less dramatically than initially estimated, in a possible sign that a prolonged slump in capital spending may be winding down.

This was the government’s second estimate of economic growth in the second quarter. It will release a third and final estimate in coming weeks....

The economy’s recent weak performances are among the concerns that could keep the Federal Reserve from raising interest rates at a mid-September meeting. The Fed boosted its key rate in December for the first time in nine years but has since held it steady."

Added: Devastating news of drastic downward revision in US wages came on August 9 just days after the conclusion of the 2016 Democrat convention. Instead of rising 4.2% in 1Q2016, wages declined .4% per BLS Aug. 9. In 2Q 2016 wages fell another 1.4% per BLS. Since Dec. 2015, a 2% drop. In June 2016 before revision Obama told the world false 'good news' of 3% wage growth in 2016: 

8/9/16, "Shock: Americans’ Wages Dropping Fast in 2016," Neil Munro, Breitbart

"Federal data released Aug. 9 shows that Americans’ wages are dropping again, seven years after President Barack Obama declared the economy had recovered from the property-bubble — and three months before the 2016 election.

The dramatic drop was buried in an Aug. 9 report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which said that officials have radically revised their prior claim that wages grew 4.2 percent in the first quarter, from January to March.

“Real hourly compensation decreased 0.4 percent after revision, rather than the previously-published increase of 4.2 percent,” the BLS admitted. Compensation also fell another 1.4 percent in the second quarter, from April to June, the BLS admitted in the same report. That’s 2 percent drop in wages since December.

Pay shrank 0.3 percent in 2013, rose a mere 1.1 percent in 2014, but rose a promising 2.7 percent in 2015, according to the BLS. 

The wage drop is a potential p.r. problem for Obama, who has been touting the apparent rise in wages since officials reported that wages grew 2.7 percent during 2015.

In June, Obama cited the mistaken 2016 wage-growth claim while arguing the economy was finally helping ordinary Americans“Let’s get wages rising faster,” Obama declared in a speech at Concord Community High School, Elkhart, Indiana.
I also know that I’ve spent every single day of my presidency focused on what I can do to grow the middle class and increase jobs, and boost wagesHere’s the good news: Wages are actually growing at a rate of about 3 percent so far this year. That’s the good news. Working Americans are finally getting a little bigger piece of the pie. But we’ve got to accelerate that.  
That speech was advertised as his first speech of the 2016 campaign, and he continued his wage-boosting theme during his July 27 speech at the Democratic Convention;
If you’re really concerned about pocketbook issues and seeing the economy grow, and creating more opportunity for everybody, then the choice isn’t even close. If you want someone with a lifelong track record of fighting for higher wages, and better benefits, and a fairer tax code, and a bigger voice for workers…you should vote for Hillary Clinton.
But Obama’s own political priorities have helped force wages down in the job market, even as he works to deliver more benefits via government offices to lower-paid Americans."...

[Ed. note: Free trade deals are another major factor keeping down US wages. Obama's own advisor on free trade deals says: ""TPP does nothing for Americans....Companies are scouring the globe for countries they can get to produce most cheaply.” That, he said, results in constant downward pressure on American wages. “They may yield support for the stock-holding class but it’s not creating jobs.”" Quoting Michael Wessel...10/9/2015, "Wikileaks release of TPP deal text stokes 'freedom of expression' fears," UK Guardian, Sam Thielman in NY. It's simple math, no college degree needed. We're mute global slaves.] 
(continuing): "One huge cause of declining wages is the federal government’s decision to import roughly 2 million migrants and guest-workers each year. They compete for work against the four million young native-born Americans who begin looking for work each year. That one-for-two flood of extra labor creates a huge surplus of U.S. workers, which drives down wages.
That wage-cutting labor surplus is hidden by federal unemployment numbers which suggests that only 1 out of 20 Americans are unemployed.  But the reality is that the many Americans and immigrants who do not have a full-time job are slyly discounted in the official reports.

“In addition to the [6.9 million recognized] unemployed, 28 percent (48.5 million) of working-age (16 to 65) natives were not in the labor force This is much higher than the 25.3 percent rate (42.1 million) in the same quarter of 2007 and the 22.9 percent rate (35.7 million) in 2000,”  said a July study from Steve Camarota, the research director at the Center for Immigration Studies, “

Overall, “55.4 million working-age, native-born Americans [were] without jobs in the first quarter of 2016, compared to 41.1 million in the same quarter of 2000,” he wrote.

In contrast, when immigration is kept low, wages tend to rise during economic growth. For example, wages rose sharply in the low-immigration decades between 1925 and 1969. Blue-collar wages also climbed in 1998 and 1999 when the fast-growing economy ran out of workers. Also, in Arizona, wages and research into labor-saving technology rose once many illegals were sent home in the mid-2000s.

Currently, U.S. agriculture companies are complaining about rising wages because many of their illegal-immigrant workers are migrating away from the farms and towards the cities“We’re probably experiencing the most critical labor shortage” since 2002, complained Tom Nassif, president and CEO of the Western Growers Association, a trade association of agricultural companies who want illegal-immigrant farm workers to get work permits, perhaps via an amnesty deal. “Wages are going up dramatically… [the labor shortage] encourage[s] people who are farmworkers to play musical chairs by going from farmer to farmer, seeking higher wages, and the farmers are competing with each other by raising those wages,” he complained

Growing wages are a huge headache for CEOs, partly because higher wages shrink profits and slash stock values on Wall Street. 

Obama tried and failed to get a wage-cutting amnesty deal in 2013 because he’s willing to let Americans’ workplace wages stall if he can increase the Democratic Party’s power to deliver benefits via government.

Obama made that political strategy clear in 2006, when he admitted  in his autobiography that large-scale migration hurts Americans wages. This huge influx of mostly low-skill workers provides some benefits to the economy as a whole… [but] it also threatens to depress further the wages of blue-collar Americans,” including blue-collar African-Americans.... 

But those brown immigrants would help the Democratic Party, he wrote. “In my mind, at least, the fates of black and brown were to be perpetually intertwined, the cornerstone of a [Democratic] coalition that could help America live up to its [progressive] promise,” he wrote in “The Audacity of Hope.”

Obama’s welcome for migrants is also rooted in his progressive views that Americans’ legal rights must be shared with all foreigners, regardless of their political beliefs, cultures or impact on the Americans’ wages.

In a November 2014 speech on immigration, for example, Obama told a Chicago audience that “there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks,’ even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.

Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently…that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration, Obama said, shortly after he announced his Oval Office plan to award work-permits to roughly 4 million additional illegal immigrants.

Obama’s combination of progressive ideology and strategy is why he has allowed 400,000 unskilled Central American migrants into the country since 2010.

He’s also provided a quasi-amnesty to almost 800,000 illegal immigrants since 2012, tried to provide a quasi-amnesty to four million illegals in November 2014, is bringing in 65,000 unskilled Syrian migrants by October, and pushed for the 2013 immigration bill that would have added at least 33 million legal migrants to this nation of 310 million Americans by 2023. Obama has also expanded the annual inflow of temporary “guest workers” from 700,000 per year to roughly 800,000 per year. 

In contrast, Donald Trump’s proposed immigration reform would reduce unemployment, drive up Americans’ wages and reducing housing costs, according to a recent Wall Street study that claimed to be critical of his policies."


The Establishment admits in 2016 State of the Union speech: Immigration does cut US wages:

1/12/16, "Obama: Yeah, Immigration Does Cut Wages For Americans," Neil Munro, Breitbart

"President Barack Obama grudgingly admitted Tuesday night that mass-immigration does reduce Americans’ wages.

The admission came in the final year of his eight-year tenure, during which a huge inflow of low-wage workers — who double as welfare-funded consumers — has kept Americans’ wages flat and the stock market running high.

The final official text of his Jan. 12 State of the Union speech said “Immigrants aren’t the reason wages haven’t gone up enough; those decisions are made in the boardrooms that too often put quarterly earnings over long-term returns.”

But he departed from the text, and actually said that “immigrants aren’t the principal reason wages haven’t gone up enough; those decisions are made in the boardrooms that too often put quarterly earnings over long-term returns.”

When he said “principal,” he admitted that immigration has at least a partial impact on wages, even as he tried to pin most of the wage-cutting blame on CEOs who keep pace with their competitors by rationally paying lower wages during a government-imposed glut of native and imported labor.

Obama’s admission that immigration cuts wages is a rare acknowledgement by an establishment politician that the law of supply and demand does operate in the labor market, despite much denial by immigration-boosters.

But it is also a politically awkward admission by Obama — because Obama and his establishment allies in the GOP and in business want to increase the annual inflow of foreign workers and consumers into the U.S. economy. House Speaker Paul Ryan is one of those allies — he’s been pushing for years to allow companies to hire “any willing worker” from the U.S. or overseas.

In 2013, for example, Obama used existing laws and his presidential power to pump up the inflow to 2 million foreign workers, even as 4 million young Americans began looking for jobs. Unsurprisingly, that year, the extra foreign labor flattened wages, boosted corporate profits and spiked the stock market.
The extra immigration also cuts wages for American white-collar professionals, who are locked out of jobs and good wages by a resident population of at least 1 million foreign college-grad guest-workers, plus millions more immigrant college-grads....

Those wage-cuts and profit-spikes are why the GOP’s CEO supporters want greater immigration. Of course, the CEO will be long retired when the migrants become citizens and subsequently vote Obama’s younger allies into power, just as Democrats now use immigrants’ votes to dominate the economically divided state of California.

That’s also obviously a bad deal for Americans, who see their own and their children’s wages, political power and civic peace traded away for the mutual benefit of progressives, business groups and foreign migrants and cultures.

Obama has long known that mass immigration cuts wagesbut that’s a price he’s willing to impose on Americans to achieve his progressive fundamental transformation of the United States. Obama made his intentions clear in 2006, when he wrote in his autobiography that large-scale migration hurts the wages of African-Americans.

This huge influx of mostly low-skill workers provides some benefits to the economy as a whole… [but] it also threatens to depress further the wages of blue-collar Americans,” Obama admitted.

But those immigrants would help the Democratic Party, he wrote. “In my mind, at least, the fates of black and brown were to be perpetually intertwined, the cornerstone of a coalition that could help America live up to its promise,” he wrote in “The Audacity of Hope.”

That reach for progressive power cancels Americans’ right to control their borders, says Obama. In November 2014, for example, Obama told a Chicago audience that “there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks,’ even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.

Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently…that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration,” Obama said in the same Chicago speech, which was intended to justify his decision to grant work-permits to roughly 5 million foreign migrants living illegally in the United States."...

[Ed. note: Who does Obama mean by "we"?]

(continuing): "Obama’s give-away was later stopped — perhaps temporarily — by federal courts, not by the GOP’s leaders in Congress."


9/25/2014, Newsweek: "Powerful forces...have reduced working-class wages around the globe."...

"Whichever approach is taken by the political parties to lure the white working class, it’s going to have to go up against powerful forces that have reduced working-class wages around the globe."...

"Why Working-Class White Men Make Democrats Nervous," Newsweek, by Matthew Cooper


8/5/16, "Since 2014 The US Has Added Half A Million Waiters and Bartenders And No Manufacturing Workers: Here's Why," Zero Hedge, Durden 

"As part of our monthly tradition showing the gaping disparity in the quality of the US labor market, we present the breakdown between the lowest paid jobs available, those for workers in "food services and drinking places", also known as waiters and bartenders, and compare them to the number of workers in the traditionally best paid sector, manufacturing.

Here is the bottom line: as the chart below shows, there have been half a million waiter and bartender jobs added since 2014, and no manufacturing jobs

This explains why contrary to the BLS's seasonally adjusted models optimistically showing a pick up in wage growth, the US economy has so far failed to observe any form of benign demand-pull inflation.

So what accounts for this troubling deteriorating in the US labor market continue every single month? Here is one explanation.

Back in January, the ECRI's Lakshman Achuthan’s made a troubling observation. The sustained decline in the official jobless rate – now near the Fed’s estimate of “full employment” – is a misleading indicator of labor market health, he said. 

Indeed, the stagnation in nominal wage growth is consistent with the weakness in the employment/population (E/P) ratio. After dropping to three-decade lows in the wake of the Great Recession, the E/P ratio has barely improved since the fall of 2013, reversing only a quarter of its decline from its pre-recession highs.

Furthermore – as a breakdown of the E/P ratio by education level shows – even this modest improvement is illusory. 

Since 2011, when the E/P ratio for those with less than a high school diploma bottomed, that metric has now regained all of its recessionary losses (green line). But the E/P ratio for high school or college graduates – i.e., eight out of nine American adults – has not recovered any of its recessionary losses, and has barely budged in four years (red line).

We have updated the chart below and it looks as follows:

Unfortunately, this data underscores how the jobs recovery has been spearheaded by cheap labor, with job gains going disproportionately to the least educated — and lowest-paid — workers, many of whom have to work multiple jobs to make ends meets. 

It also means that while the BLS can liberally apply seasonal adjustment lipstick on the unadjusted payrolls report to make it more attractive, the truth for most Americans is that the so-called recovery continue to escape most working-age Americans. The only good news is that restaurant workers appear to still be hiring... at least until all new waiters are replaced by robots." charts from Zero Hedge