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What We Read Today 16 May 2017

Econintersect: Every day our editors collect the most interesting things they find from around the internet and present a summary "reading list" which will include very brief summaries (and sometimes longer ones) of why each item has gotten our attention. Suggestions from readers for "reading list" items are gratefully reviewed, although sometimes space limits the number included.

This feature is published every day late afternoon New York time. For early morning review of headlines see "The Early Bird" published every day in the early am at GEI News (membership not required for access to "The Early Bird".).


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Topics today include:

  • Oregon man charged with decapitating mom on Mother's Day

  • America is still segregated. We need to be honest about why

  • Puerto Rico's bankruptcy hearing marks reset of asset scramble

  • Inflation Cycles Approx. Every 15 Years

  • Cyber attack eases, hacking group threatens to sell code

  • Trump stands by 'absolute right' to share sensitive information with Russia

  • Donald Trump’s Russia revelations stoke the chorus for impeachment

  • The dangerous distrust between Trump and the national security agencies

  • Judge Garland not interested in FBI job: sources

  • Democratic Party Image Dips, GOP Ratings Stable

  • Emmanuel Macron picks centre-right Édouard Philippe as PM 

  • And More

Articles about events, conflicts and disease around the world


  • Cyber attack eases, hacking group threatens to sell code (Reuters)  Governments turned their attention to a possible new wave of cyber threats on Tuesday after the group that leaked U.S. hacking tools used to launch the global WannaCry "ransomware" attack warned it would release more malicious code.  The fast-spreading cyber extortion campaign, which has infected more than 300,000 computers worldwide since Friday, eased for second day on Tuesday, but the identity and motive of its creators remain unknown.

The attack includes elements that belong to the U.S. National Security Agency and were leaked online last month.

Shadow Brokers, the group that has taken credit for that leak, threatened on Tuesday to release more recent code to enable hackers to break into the world's most widely used computers, software and phones.


  • Judge Garland not interested in FBI job: sources (Reuters)  U.S. appeals court judge Merrick Garland, turned away by the Senate last year for a Supreme Court post, is not interested in serving as FBI director, two sources said on Tuesday, even as the top Senate Republican recommended him for the job.  Garland, the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, has told people around him he "loves his job and is not interested in leaving the judiciary", said one of the sources familiar with the judge's thinking. The two sources spoke on condition of anonymity.  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he has mentioned Garland to Republican President Donald Trump as a possible successor James Comey, who Trump fired last week as FBI chief. In an interview on Bloomberg Television, McConnell referred to Garland, a former federal prosecutor, as "an apolitical professional" to head the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

  • Democratic Party Image Dips, GOP Ratings Stable (Gallup)  The GOP does not seem to be able to improve their party ratings, but the Democrats are not even doing that well.


Other Scientific, Health, Political, Economics, and Business Items of Note - plus Miscellanea

Little has been done to desegregate neighborhoods because we think it is the result of private prejudice instead of explicit government policy. That is a myth.

  • Puerto Rico's bankruptcy hearing marks reset of asset scramble (Reuters)  Puerto Rico is due to embark on a bankruptcy process on Wednesday that could take years to resolve, as investors scramble to get the highest recovery on their bonds.  The debt is still trading at elevated levels versus what the government has set aside for payment under its financial recovery plan, and creditors worry about whether they will be able to recoup at those prices.  Whether they get that level of recovery is debatable, according to investors and analysts, as the U.S. territory seeks to restructure more than $70 billion in debt, from multiple agencies, and another near $45 billion in underfunded pension liabilities. Shaun Burgess, portfolio manager and lead trader for Puerto Rico strategy at Sarasota, Florida-based Cumberland Advisors said:

"The 25 percent may be what the Commonwealth identified as a available to cover debt service but it doesn't necessarily mean that will be the ultimate recovery." 

  • Inflation Cycles Approx. Every 15 Years (  Inflation like everything else it seems has cycles. It trends up for years and then for almost no reason begins falling again. After a while it rises again.  Unfortunately, while it is doing its long term dance it is bouncing up and down creating so much "noise" that it is difficult to see the longer term trend.

Click for large image.

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