Pseudo Random News and Comment

Part 3 of 5 of Barry’s look at housing affordability. Since real incomes are stagnant, higher rents are no more sustainable than higher house prices to me so the rent vs buy comparisons present an overly rosy view for that reason too. The upcoming mortgage rate installment should be interesting since the chart from Ned Davis Research shows median prices of ~3.7x income as the cutoff for cheap houses. 3.7x with 20% down means lenders are doing loans for 3x income. When I first bought a house, in a period with significantly higher rates, 2x income was hard to pry loose. The further back you go the lower that ratio gets. In the early 20th century 1x income was a hard sell.

One of the biggest benefits of a truly free market is that it functions to deprive the incompetent from the control of assets, maximizing the efficient use of limited resources and satisfaction of people’s wants. Interventions that prevent that from occurring, like the massive bailouts of the financial sector, lead to waste, wealth destruction, misallocation of resources, fraud, corruption and a gang-raping of fiduciary duty. Look no further than this disgusting expose on BofA for still more proof that someone should have buried that putrid corpse long ago.

Suicide Watch! JPM awards Dimon a paltry $23M for 2011. Ray Dalio probably spent more than that on a toilet brush.

Swedish researchers uncover key to China’s Tor-blocking system. Next step is to circumvent.

Apple bypasses iPhone passcodes to hand your encrypted data to the cops.

Astrocytes get a promotion in understanding of brain function. As understanding of the interrelations and functions of all the cells in the brain (and body) becomes more complex a strict materialist view of consciousness is all the more justified and sensible.

Dendritic cells provide a link between atherosclerosis and autoimmunity. Current immunosuppressants target them only tangentially, though Rapamycin appears to have more effect than most.

Executive Functions Predict the Success of Top-Soccer Players. That brain thing seems to be somehow involved in everything. Having one should be more popular.

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