We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Friday, January 25. 2008
Why is Tide so popular? (read the comments)
A Prof thinks we should stop teaching fractions. How does saying "Add 0.75 tsp. salt" improve anybody's life? Can you imagine saying "Cut the dowel 14.875 inches?" Why are so many professors foolish when it comes to real life? Or how about "Add 0.3333... (how many threes do you want to go out?) cups of corn meal." h/t, Wizbang
An objective look at Kinsey's work. AVI
The Clinton tag-team campaign. Is Bill running for President again? You bet he is.
Electile dysfunction. It's funny, but I don't really like the premise: there is something weird about a person getting excited about a politician.
Back in the saddle: US Border guards. That would be a fun job.
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Dave Alvin wrote a very good song about Border Guards. It's on his 'Blackjack David' album. Called 'California Snow':
I’m just tryin’ to make a livin’
I’m an old man at thirty-nine
With two kids and an ex-wife
Who moved up to Riverside
I’m workin’ down on the border
Drivin’ back roads every night
Mountains east of El Cajon
North of the Tecate line.
Where the California summer sun
Will burn right through your soul
But in the winter you can freeze to death
In the California snow.
I catch the ones I’m able to
And watch the others slip away
I know some by their faces
And I even know some by name
I guess they think that we’re all
Movie stars and millionaires
I guess that they still believe
That dreams come true up here.
But I guess the weather’s warmer down in Mexico
And no one ever tells them ‘bout the California snow.
Last winter I found a man and wife
Just about daybreak
Layin’ in a frozen ditch
South of the interstate
I wrapped ‘em both in blankets
But she’d already died
The next day we sent him back alone
Across the borderline.
I don’t know where they came from
Or where they planned to go
But we carried her all night long
Through the California snow.
Sometimes when I’m alone out here
I get to thinkin’ about my life
Maybe I should go to Riverside
And try to fix things with my wife
Or maybe just get in my truck
And drive as far as I can go
Away from all the ghosts that haunt
The California snow.
Where the California summer sun
Can burn right to your soul
And in the winter you can freeze to death
In the California snow.
Ursus Major, Redux
The most famous bear market rally in history is the rise, which took place following the October crash of 1929. Stocks began to recover strongly following the November 13th 1929 low amidst wildly bullish comments
From a low at 199 on November 13 - down from the September 4, peak at 381- the Dow Jones Industrial rallied to a high of 294 in April 1930 ( up 48% ).
No one anticipated a recession, let alone a depression. Charles Mitchell who headed the National City Bank, announced soon after the crash that the trouble was 'purely technical' and that 'the fundamentals remained unimpaired'. While President Hoover assured the American people that 'the fundamental business of the country, that is production and distribution of commodities, is on a sound and prosperous basis.'
US Secretary of the Treasury, Andrew Mellon also remained confident about the economy: On December 31, 1929, he stated: 'I see nothing in the present situation that is either menacing or warrants pessimism… I have every confidence that there will be a revival of activity in the spring, and that during this coming year the country will make steady progress' and in February 1930, he added, 'there is nothing in the situation to be disturbed about'.
The Federal Reserve Bank cut the discount rate immediately following the crash from 6% to 5% on November 1, 1929, to 4.5% on November 15, and to 4% on January 30, 1930. Subsequently the discount rate was repeatedly cut to 2.5% in June 1930, to 2% in December 1930, and 1.5% in mid 1931.
Beware of Bear Market rallies. Contrary to what we are being told the fundamentals of our economy are no longer simply the fundamentals of our economy. We're global now and the worlds biggest debtor nation by far, while at the same time outsourcing jobs while our dollars craters against other currencies. Meanwhile the government continues to print fiat money backed by thin air.
Fundamentals aren't "solid" in that environment, particularly when we are forced to borrow from the Chinese to save our economy from imploding..and as I mentioned yesterday we haven't uncovered the depth of the mortgage insurers exposure to this fallout ... can anybody spare a dime?
Tranche ..get use to the word
The word tranche is French for slice, section, series, or portion; in the financial sense of the word, each bond is a slice of the deal's risk.
Continuing down the long and unwinding road that is our current circumstance if you asked ANY CEO of a bank, mortgage company, mortgage insurer or even guru George Soros just how many variations on tranche composition there currently are and what there value is or downside risk is, NOT ONE, NOT ONE would be able to give you an answer.
This is the game they have been playing as the securitized the mortgages, sub prime and otherwise, over the past five or six years and then sent their sales forces out to sell the general public "securitized' investments, backed by peoples homes..you can hear them now in the sale pitch .."These are safe investment, many insured by other companies and after all, who wants to lose their home?" Many mutual funds loaded up too. Just check you mutual funds investments.
Even the most casual of American home checkbook balancers and bill payers have some idea of where their they stand ...not so in the corridors of "sophisticated " finance on Wall Street.
Can anybody spare a dime?
Well I've used the phrase now twice, get clued.
Hey there, Habu.
I am a petite negress with 34DD breastesses, a Hottentot behind and attitude. I be givin' you a dime, honey, if'n you be givin' me two bits.
Whatcha think 'o that, baby?
Dear Negro woman. What African tribe be you from?
I don't to black..maybe a nice octoroon.
And is that just a cold sore on yo lip?
I am frum the Habutsi tribe. It is a very fine, ferocious tribe of short angry men an petite womins with arses to weep for.
I don' kno why youse wantin' to save them 500 white babes with giant hooters and liddel backs becos dont you know in a few yeers they backs be bent over. My daddy wus a man named Ahnohld. That makes me a brass ankle weth a strong back. No, that aint jus a cold sore on my lip. It's impetigo from the pole. I'm a pole dancer. I got me a Pee Aij Dee in dancin.
Whut ya thaink now you kno more 'bout me? Strong...grrrrr
Meta..bring me this woman..no substitues, no exceptions.
Lawww, Habu. Thet woman has a lean 'n hongry look. That 'com'ere, I am goin to eat you alive' look. Whut on earf you gwain do wit a fire cat lik that, anyways, you naughty old man.
Now, me, I be smooth 'n easy on a man but I kno you don lik no darkies so I be on my way now.
You tayke care an tell yo missus I come do her ironin ef'n she wunts.
A word on what a Democratic presidential victory will mean for the future of the Supreme Court.
If a future Supreme Court ruling outlawed private gun ownership would gun owners comply peacefully or would we have a shootout between highly conflicted National Guard troops, FBI and ATF agents?
I say there would be a shootout and those FBI,ATF, and national Guardsmen that attempted to enforce such a ruling would come out on the very short end of the stick.
Any other thoughts out there?
yes, let's get petraus into the white house and then declare martial law for fifty years. hey, i'm not kidding -- the hell with this democracy mess.
I agree if they move against private gun ownership they'll be a good deal of mutiny in the services given that they are sworn to uphold the Constitution and the 2nd Amendment guarantees that Constitution.
In fact military personnel are only required to carry out lawful orders ..go'n and grab'n your hunt'n buddies guns ain't in that category
If would not surprise me at all to see the Democrats attempt that very thing, in which case a million man march on DC under arms should be a sufficient Gun-O-Gram to the Dems.
hah -- the Bonus Marchers all over again -- or the Whiskey Rebellion -- or the Battle of Blair Mountain --
With all the promises made to GWOT vets by both parties, we might just see a bonus march, if they don't deliver.
It would get a LOT of support -- thinking people know who's standing between the country and hell.
I hope so, but, there's a possibility the spin machine will decide say, S-CHIP for middle class children, student loan forgiveness and more free government cheese is a much higher priority than the promises made to Tommy/GI Jane. The results could be dangerous for the Republic.
Once again, the Democrats bring up what Will Rogers said. "I not a member of an organized party, I'm a Democrat".
Do they really want the next election to be a referendum on the Clinton years? Is her inevitableness really content to be shoved off stage? When will mysterious women in blue dresses start appearing at his appearances?
Good points Walt.
But if the countless bimbos Bill has had over the years plus the ones we know about:
plus an impeachment
couldn't scandalize Bill into shame and averting the limelight then nothing will. He is a full blown sociopath and I still maintain he was recruited by the KGB during his Oxford holiday to Russia. Somewhere someone knows that but as happens so often they are "protecting" the American people from such horrible information ... for our own good naturally.
Lawdy lawdy lawdy. Great depressions, race wowahs, civil wowahs, wut gwan become of us'ns? I gwan flang mysef off'n a bridge.
Lordy, Step...don be doin such! You fat? If so, then I rekon het's okay.
You come wartch me pole dance. I mayke you ferfit thee sorry state whut sum poeples mayke outta race. Braing sum doller bills becos I need some impitigo creem.
fat? yo axe is I FAT? Law, woman, i so fat the onliest way i ken find my privates is ifn i roll my sef in flour n looks fo de wet spot
T*Regarding the MDGs*
The Episcopal Church is introducing a Lenten learning program that is based around the Millenium Development Goals. The pedagogy is similar to the Stations of the Cross.
The presidential election still has a long way to go. It sort of reminds me of the Major League Baseball season, where lot's of things can happen over a grueling 162-game schedule. Of course, being a Cub fan, I have never had the opportunity to experience the joy of a World Series championship. I suppose one could draw comparisons between the Republican presidential field and my beloved Cubbies! There's always next year!
My grandfather pitched for the Cubs in 1931 and 1932 when they went to the WS and played the Yankees, losing four straight to Ruth and Gehrig et al. He had some great stories of his 17 years in the majors beginning in 1922.
He once went 22 innings by himself. In the 20 and 21st inning the team he was playing for had no outs and the bases loaded but couldn't score. It was a heartbreaker to lose. The other team at that time was the Cubs.
At the end of his career he came off of third base coaching duty to pitch against the St Louis Cards. The second man up got a hit. He then retired the next 25 in a row and he drove in the winning run. The Cards had Dizzy Dean and were leading the league at the time.
A Georgia boy he often hunted with Ty Cobb and was one of the last people to see Cobb in the hospital before he died. Boy did he have some great baseball stories.
Maybe the Cubs will make it all the way..one day.