Week ending 8/24/20
Global Covid Cases: 23,475,619
Global Covid Deaths: 810,317
New Deaths: 39,481 an average of 5,640 per day, up slightly from last week’s 5590 per day average
US Covid Cases: 5,855,818
US Covid Deaths: 180,384 – 172,836
New Deaths: 7548 – average of 1078- just slightly down from 1082 per day dying average last week – but as noted before, these numbers are suspect due to the politicizing of COVID-19 in the USA.
Hawaii Covid Cases: 6356
Hawaii Covid Deaths: 47
Oahu Covid Cases: 5806 (1416 new since last week avg 202 per day)
New Deaths Last Week: 7
Average 218 new cases per day up from 211 per day last week. This fire appears to be growing out of control little by little here on Oahu.
Other Covid News: USA, Brazil, and India still maintain the top of the leaderboard in total known cases. USA and Brazil top the death charts with Mexico and then India fighting for third. Mexico had three times as many new deaths from Covid-19 as any other country last week. It seems likely that India will at some point surpass the US in both cases and deaths as they have a population that is four times as large, but the bungling of the US healthcare system might make that a moot point. In the USA total cases are led by California, Texas, and Florida with New York trailing significantly. New York still leads the total deaths by double with New Jersey following and then a tight race between California, Texas, and Florida. This is almost completely a matter of state populations but New York and New Jersey our outliers based on the early epicenter status and high death rates early on. New cases are growing fastest in the former Confederacy. Within California, Los Angeles has been hit the hardest in terms of cases and deaths.
BLM and Civil Liberties Protests: There were multiple violent clashes between BLM and civil iberties protestors and pro-police, white nationalist, and other openly racist or right leaning groups in cities around the USA this week. Portland was the most paid attention to but also in Michigan, Georgia, and other places. The two sides could essentially be tagged as red MAGA hat wearing and not MAGA hat wearing. Federal police once again became involved in Portland as the fascist ‘Proud Boys’ brawled with Antifa and anarchists – peaceful protestors were, of course, caught in the middle.
Economic News: Elon Musk is now the 4th richest person in the world. I don’t really understand this. Spending at Walmart dropped dramatically as soon as the unemployment supplement was suspended in the U.S. Mortgages are at their highest default rate ever (16%). Over 30 million people lost their jobs between mid-March and mid-May. But the wealth of America’s 600+ billionaires ballooned by $434 billion. Apple just became the first $2 trillion dollar company. Larry Ellison – a major Trump donor (and only person who owns his own Hawaiian Island) is trying to buy Tik Tok for Oracle. Weekly new jobless claims jumped back above 1 million on Thursday. 28 million Americans are collecting unemployment – that’s close to 18% of the working population. So far 30 million people lost their jobs while America’s billionaires became richer by about $434 billion dollars…The richest 10% of Americans own a staggering 84% of all stocks and bonds. The stock market has boomed because the Federal Reserve threw $7 trillion dollars at the stock, bond, and financial markets since March – a move which benefits the richest 10% greatly and everyone else not very much at all. Just so you can see the zeroes – this is how much our government gave the wealthy $7,000,000,000,000 of which nearly half $484,000,000,000 went to America’s billionaires. To put that number in perspective – that $7 trillion could have created 7 million millionaires – in other words they could have given $1 million dollars to every citizen of Wyoming, Vermont, Alaska, North and South Dakota, Delaware, Rhode Island, Montana, and Hawaii or alternatively they could have sent over $21,000 to every man, woman, and child in America – instead, well, you get the picture. During the pandemic, the poor lost their jobs and became poorer while the rich kept their jobs and their investments were bailed out. If the Federal Reserve had let markets bottom out, welath inequality would have been cut in half – meaning, the rich would have lost about half their wealth. Instead, low paid workers lost their jobs, got the stimulus and unemployment and handed it over to the rich in the form of rent, credit card bills, and other payments – which filtered right up to the top – as money does – and, let me beat this dead horse, the top didn’t lose anything but only reaped the benefits every step of the way. I’m a fan of socialism, but what we have done in America is create socialism that only exists for the wealthy. There is a huge reckoning coming…some have called it an unemployment tsunami – others just call it collapse.
Note: American and European Capitalism thrive on crisis which is why for many traders and capitalists, 2020 is being seen as the best year ever. Think about that for a minute as we drive towards 300,000 dead in the U.S. by November.
Political News: The ‘Virtual’ DNC happened this week. Steve Bannon, Curt Schilling and others were arrested for ‘wall fraud’. A judge dismissed Trump’s lawsuit to continue hiding his taxes…but we still haven’t seen them. Over 70 Republican National Security officials have said they will vote for Biden – this has never happened before. Joe Biden’s acceptance speech was a masterpiece of hope and statesmanship – comparing him to Trump really comes down to the simple light versus darkeness, a point which the speech made repeatedly. In a secretly recorded conversation the sister of ‘President’ Trump said ‘he has no morals and you cannot trust him’ – which surprises no one. The RNC will take place this week which should be fun – watching Trump try to outdo Biden’s convention – already at least five protestors have been arrested in Charlotte outside the convention site.
International News: The president and prime minister of Mali have been arrested by the people. Blockades in Bolivia continue. Belarus anti-government protests continue. Israel has been bombing Gaza every night for at least a week with war planes. Iran is showing off some new intercontinental balistic missiles.
Severe Weather and Other News: The hosttest temperature ever recorded on Earth was recorded this week in Death Valley, California. 130 F or 54.4 C. Fires are ripping California apart. It looks like two hurricanes are going to hit the Gulf of Mexico coastine from Houston to New Orleans. Oh, and it looks like a small asteroid may hit earth the day before the U.S. elections…just to add some drama to an otherwise boring year…