Thursday, March 21, 2013


Click to enlarge.

I made it to number nine on Rocksmith's Scale Runner mini-game. It took me 5 1/2 hours of continuous play to get there (in addition to the massive number of hours played over the past 7 weeks). I hobbled my way off to a hot bathtub after making the attempt, lol.

9 (number)

The Japanese consider nine to be unlucky because in Japanese the word for nine sounds similar to the word for "pain" or "distress".

Anecdotal evidence sides with the Japanese on this one, not that I'm complaining! :)

In related news, the economy continues to hobble along as well. I suspect many investors may someday take a bath after their attempts to set new high scores in the S&P 500. Once again, this assumes that the Fed hasn't permanently put a stop to recessions even as our economy remains incredibly weak. Just a theory!


Mr Slippery said...

Congrats on breaking the top ten! Looking at the other handles, I might have chosen "blister_fingers" or "string_theory" as my guitar game handle.

The whole Cyprus affair has been enormously entertaining. Their banks may blow up for good on Tuesday and who doesn't love direct theft of deposits? They can't take my nickels or gold that way!

I am preparing for another hike tomorrow so I'll miss all the econo-fireworks. Keep on strumming.

Stagflationary Mark said...

Mr Slippery,

I can no longer improve my score by dwelling on my worst scales. They are all just about the same to me now. I think my worst was 265 notes in row (within 100 seconds) and my best was 268. Several of the scales require me to shift my hands to hit the notes. It doesn't seem to cost me much time to do it though. It's pretty much all just muscle memory now.

I actually got 268 notes in a row on three different scales (out of 11). That explains why a mere 268 notes got me into ninth.

I don't think I've hit my peak yet. I averaged 14.16 million per scale (155.8 million / 11 scales). Last week I thought 12.3 million was reasonably fast. I no longer feel that way.

I'll need to start seeing 269+ notes in a row before I make another attempt at beating this score. It may take some time to do. Hard to say.

Since I've only been playing these scales for about 7 weeks, I think there's a fairly good chance that I can hit #1 eventually. If not soon, within the next year seems very doable.

I just need to go about 2% faster (274 / 268 = 1.022). That's all that's left. :)

Stagflationary Mark said...


From your link....

“CPI will never reach 2 percent,” Eisuke Sakakibara, Kuroda’s direct predecessor as vice finance minister in charge of currency policy in the 1990s, said in a Bloomberg Television interview. “This deflation is structural. It’s a result of the integration of the Japanese economy with the rest of east Asia and it has taken place for the last 20 years.”

This must drive the hyperinflationists nuts! Never is a long time to wait! ;)

(I'm not suggesting that I agree that hyperinflation will "never" happen of course. Never say never, lol.)

Stagflationary Mark said...

Initial claims are looking pretty good over the last 3 weeks.

At least some of that danger has momentarily passed.

The danger has not permanently passed though. 5 decades of data clearly shows that the Fed cannot permanently remove volatility in initial claims.

Down, down, down, ..., boom!

It's like a frickin' time bomb.

Stagflationary Mark said...

(And there's probably not that much fuse left. Sigh.)

Troy said...

We all knew the coiled spring that was going to pop in the 2005-2007 period . . .

blue is consumer debt take-on (flipped, left), red is initial claims.

In 2006 the flow reversed and Bad Things were coming in train.

I don't see the bubble breaker now. Uncle Ben is not bound by physics or finding greater fools.

I see that hitting $20T by 2020.

Japan showed the way, and they're lighting a new stage right now.

My understanding is no wage inflation, no inflation., but after 10+ years, all bets are off.

Troy said...

Now that's what I'm talking about!

Mr Slippery said...

Since I've only been playing these scales for about 7 weeks, I think there's a fairly good chance that I can hit #1 eventually. If not soon, within the next year seems very doable.

The patience of a criminal mastermind! Unstoppable. I hope you can get another 2% speed. It sounds like it takes a long time to rack up those giant scores, but you've got the time.

Troy said...

both charts combined (blue gov't cheese, red YOY consumer borrowing).

To get back to the 1990s level of per-worker spending we've got to cut $10,000 per worker. Good luck with that, Mish.

Now that the baby boom is hitting their mid-60s, that's going to be impossible of course.

We're not going to be able to raise taxes apparently.

Something weird's going to happen.

I think we're going to flood the world with USDs and borrow them back.

But no if there's no wage inflation, no inflation!

mab said...

Mish is blinded by his own personal eCONomic religious beliefs. The guy is buffoon.

Gov't "debt". Bah! Bond "vigilantes". Bah!

Mish always predicts the US will be like Greece. Why Greece and not Japan? It's a rhetorical question. We can't be like Japan because Japan doesn't square with Mish's eCONomic "theories".

Don't change the "theory", just ignore the inCONvenient data. Is that scientific thinking or religious thinking? You decide.

Troy said...

another comment from DeLong's:

>when the depression ends

the current depression started in 2001. Why should it end anytime soon?

is a quite curious chart I just made.

blue is real per-worker productivity, subtracting debt take-on

red is debt leverage, total debt over GDP

It shows the 1990s was a productivity miracle, but the 2000s was more an artifact of the debt leveraging going on 2000-2007.

Fritz_O said...

"is a quite curious chart I just made."

What strikes me about that chart is the way the debt leverage leveled off after the market crash in '87, then took off again in 2001+.

It's as if the Barbarians at the Gate where fended off after '87 and then regained their morally indignant and contemptuous strength in about 2001.

dearieme said...

I suspect that the Cypriots would be delighted if they got something as mild as stagflation. Poor sods.

Troy said...

^ yup. The 1990 recession was one of catching our breath after the 1980s debt take-on bubble.

Today I just noticed something in the debt/GDP chart:

Looks like we could be starting another staircase move up!

Japan is at around 4.0 on this chart if you're wondering, adding 0.1 per year or so I guess.

Stagflationary Mark said...


I once again apologize for being absent. I'm still mostly in taking an extended break mode.