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Boy Scouts
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Folks I've Known
Growing Older
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New Jersey
Summer 2008
The West
The Woods
Truck Camping
Where I Grew Up

Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

How Donald Trump Tried to Cash In by Dumping Sewage Into the Hudson River

"Donald Trump is loud and boastful on camera, but sometimes he operates more quietly off screen, like when he needed to solve a sewage problem beneath the streets of Manhattan—a problem that mysteriously evaporated one day in 1994, allowing a flood of cash that saved Trump from drowning in debt.
This is a little-known aspect of how Trump bungled the chance to make billions of dollars building on the largest developable tract of land in America’s largest city, a story the late actor Christopher Reeve called “the American dream gone berserk.”
Way back in 1974, when Trump was not yet 30 years old, he acquired control of the old Penn Central rail yards on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. For a song, he had 57 acres of land along the Hudson River that ran 13 blocks from 59th Street to 72nd Street."

Real (Inflation-Adjusted) Gross Domestic Product, 1929-2016

This interactive graph shows the real gross domestic product of the United States, inflation adjusted from 1929 through 2016. This graph shows that America is roughly 15% wealthier then in 2009, and 28% wealthier then in 2000. While it can be argued over the fairness of current wealth distribution patterns, and while per capita wealth has grown at a slower rate, it is clear that America has seen a dramatic growth of it's total wealth over recent years.

Data Source: https://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTable.cfm?ReqID=9&step=1#reqid=9&step=3&isuri=1&904=1929&903=3&906=a&905=2016&910=x&911=0

Trump Administration Files Motion Aimed At Controlling Consumer Protection Agency

"The Trump administration has gone to court to try to bring the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under its control. The bureau is an executive branch entity, but the president doesn't have direct control over the six-year-old agency.

The Justice Department filed a brief with a federal appeals court in Washington on Friday, making the case that the structure of the agency violates the Constitution."

How To Make Boring Sell: In A Jiffy

"We hear a lot about U.S. companies laying off workers and shipping jobs overseas.

So, amid the global pressures to downsize, how do you hang onto your workforce?

We went looking for answers in Chelsea, Mich., home to a family owned manufacturer that's managed to thrive over four generations, since the company's founding in 1907.

The Chelsea Milling Co. is better known as the manufacturer of Jiffy baking mixes. You know the ones. They come in those signature little blue and white boxes: mixes for muffins, cakes, pie crusts, biscuits, brownies and more."

Locked Up

"This buck was found by Luke Laha, who is a wildlife management teacher in Kansas. The buck found was carrying around the head of one of it’s rival bucks. Apparently the two bucks had become entangled and the coyotes decided to make a meal out of the loser, leaving it’s head attached to the living buck’s rack. It took a while before Luke Laha and his class were finally able to trap the buck and free him of his “trophy”."

Federal Funds Target Rate, 1982-Present

The federal funds rate has fallen to historic levels after the recession, but continues to inch upwards as the economy recovers. During the recession, the FED rate was to a target of 0 to 0.25 (they set a lower and upper range, because they wanted to get the target rate as close to zero without causing a negative rate and deflation).

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US), Federal Funds Target Rate (DISCONTINUED) [DFEDTAR], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/DFEDTAR, March 15, 2017.

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US), Federal Funds Target Range - Upper Limit [DFEDTARU], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/DFEDTARU, March 15, 2017.

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US), Federal Funds Target Range - Lower Limit [DFEDTARL], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/DFEDTARL, March 15, 2017.

Map: January 2016 Unemployment Rate

Map: January 2016 Unemployment Rate

The seasonally unadjusted unemployment numbers for New York State in New York State suggest the Hudson Valley economy going fairly strong, while the Tug Hill Plateau and the Adirondacks struggle to create jobs. I wonder if the particularly high unemployment rate in this region is in part due to the mild weather which has cut into snowmobiling, skiing, and other forms of winter recreation. The Western NY economy in contrast appears to be relatively strong in the month of January.

As a side note, in case your wondering why I am posting this data now, unemployment data in NY State is lagged about a month after the statistics are collected for processing. Unemployment numbers for January became available on March 3rd.

If you are interested in downloading the NYS Department of Labor Unemployment Data, you can get it from this month's press release. http://labor.ny.gov/stats/pressreleases/pruistat.shtm

For sake of contrast, here is the December 2015 numbers. Remember, these numbers are uncorrected for seasonal factors, and unemployment tends to increase after holiday retail and shipping jobs go away. http://andyarthur.org/map-december-2015-unemployment-rate.html#full-screen