Monday, June 29, 2009
There's always something right about what's going wrong.
Am most eager to start writing about a story that I find utterly fascinating but now will have to wait.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
The foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
---The Apostle Paul
Friday, June 26, 2009
ANDREW BREITBART DISPENSES WITH PLATITUDES
LOOK, YOU HAVE TOO MANY SMART PEOPLE TO INSULT MY INTELLIGENCE
I MEAN, THE HEADLINE this morning is rather silly for a grown-up newspaper: World laments Michael Jackson, Awaits Answers (May take months to find exact cause). Who's writing your headlines these days? Eighth grade summer interns from Sidwell Friends?
A more reality based Webutante-type headline might read: DEAD MAN WALKING FINALLY DIES.
I'll it say again, you have too many smart people there---Pruden, Breitbart, Miniter just to name just a few---who can help figure this thing out and write a decent PAGE 1 story. It's not rocket science. You're not the National Enquirer or TMZ. So let me give you some clues and exact causes while I'm still buzzing on my softer early morning patience:
There are surely a few people and family members lamenting Michael's death in earnest (see Lisa Marie's touching quote, below, and my heart goes out to them). There are quite a few who aren't. I'm one of them. There may be millions, even billions who're awaiting answers (they already know) to satiate their morbid curiosities because they don't have anything else going on in their lives.
However, no person in your reading audience in their right minds and not completely bonked out on drugs---with all due respect to Elizabeth Taylor---should be surprised, let alone shocked at Michael's death. Nor should anyone with a modicum of sense act as if they don't know what caused it. In fact,if you ask me, instead of being shocked that he died "suddenly" on Thursday, I'm shocked that he miraculously lived as long as he did. (BTW, there were a few brave former associates of Michael who were brave enough to tell the truth.)
So let's here's the scoop, fellas: Michael Jackson died Thursday, not suddenly at all, but after decades of slowly dying from massive drug abuse, alcohol, spending more than he made--at last count, he was over $400 million in debt---untreated pedophilia and child abuse which he should have gone to prison for, and a group of family, friends and hired professionals and servants who enabled him to live outside the world of reality, responsibility and accountability.
In the end the laws of nature, if not of man, caught up with him. It's a cautionary tale. Amazing talent, fame and money does not conquer all. There are many inner-city kids in DC and their parents who need to hear the real story.
Oh yes, who administered the last lethal injection---the doctor the entire city of LA is looking for to blame? How low can we go when we want to pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey of someone who has been paid years, maybe decades, to give Michael injections to mask his deep pain and paranoia. We need someone to blame, to take responsibility for Michael's choices over the past thirty years?
And none other than the Rev. Jesse Jackson is leading the charge towards this nonsense. Oh please. It's truly insane. The poor doc was just doing his job on another hum-drum day at the Ranch of insanity land. But now fans are working themselves up into a huge group victim lather: they're getting madder and madder about what others did to Michael to cut his life short. It was all their fault! The poor doctor has hired a lawyer and I'm sure preparing for the worst.
I hope you'll quit this front page nonsense, and write something about Michael's death that has a ring of reality to it. While you're at it, get some sober adults on this story with a little perspective. Again, this is a cautionary tale and lots of those inner city kids and parents in DC might benefit from a little dose of Michael reality. The sadness is how many young people look up to Michael and his famous lifestyle which, like Elvis, was a series of self-medications, indiscretions and refusals of help and advice from loved ones desperate to save him, up until the bitter end.
WSJ Photo taken at Madam Tussaud's Wax Museum outside the Venetian Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, a fan makes public her grief after the museum moved the figure outside, following Jackson's death Thursday in LA of cardiac arrest from a probable drug overdose.
Fading, but will be back in the morning with a few rambling thoughts on Michael's death.
Meanwhile: Heartfelt entry from Lisa Marie Presley's MySpace page:
Michael Jackson’s ex-wife Lisa Marie Presley blogged Friday on her MySpace page that while talking 14 years ago with Jackson about the death of her father, Elvis Presley, he paused and said, “‘I am afraid that I am going to end up like him, the way he did,’” referring to Elvis’s fatal overdose of prescription drugs. “I promptly tried to deter him from the idea,” Presley continues, “at which point he just shrugged his shoulders and nodded almost matter of fact as if to let me know, he knew what he knew and that was kind of that.” During her relationship with Jackson, Presley said, she grew exhausted from “her quest to save him from certain self-destructive behavior,” but she assures fans the marriage was not a sham, though it ended quickly in divorce. “His family and his loved ones also wanted to save him from this as well but didn’t know how and this was 14 years ago. We all worried that this would be the outcome then... I desperately hope that he can be relieved from his pain, pressure and turmoil now. He deserves to be free from all of that and I hope he is in a better place or will be. I also hope that anyone else who feels they have failed to help him can be set free because he hopefully finally is. The World is in shock but somehow he knew exactly how his fate would be played out some day more than anyone else knew, and he was right."
Read it at MySpace H/T The Daily Beast
Posted by Lisa Marie at 7:29 PM June 26, 2009
...my very own Congressman and nice guy, Rep. Jim Cooper of Nashville....No, Jim, a thousand times, NO!
RHETORICAL QUESTION OF THE CENTURY: ROGER SIMON ASKS, IS MAN-MADE GLOBAL WARMING THE BIGGEST SCHUCK OF ALL TIME?
GLOBAL WARMING BILL SET FOR TODAY
Today, case in point. I called each of Tennessee's Congressional delegation and found out exactly where each of them stands. Then I either congratulated or scolded each of their well-trained phone people in as civilized a way as I could.
Here's the head count: All Republican Congressmen (Roe, Duncan, Blackburn, Wamp), are voting nay. And Two Democrats--Rep. Lincoln Davis and Rep. John Tanner are both voting nay too! (Tanner says it's not the right time for this bill, with the economy in shambles and he also thinks his mostly agricultural constituents will be penalized more as this bill is now written.) The other Dems are voting yes, or on the fence---Rep. Bart Gordon and Rep. Steve Cohen--or at least they say they're still undecided. I certainly tried to give a few talking points to their staff that might be compelling enough to pass on.
The biggest disappointment is my Congressman, Jim Cooper from Nashville, who likes to purport himself a fiscal conservative. Fiscal conservative my hind-end! His rationale is simply---are you ready for this?---jobs creation. That's it. Totally. It sounds pretty lame to me. Never mind that to create some of these green jobs, many more jobs will be destroyed through higher costs of doing business not to mention higher taxes and costs passed on to consumers.
All-in-all, Jim Cooper gets my No Cigar Award today and I will now actively work against his re-election next year. He's a nice fellow who I personally like, but I have no patience with his voting for this bill. No doubt, he's been schmoozing with my neighbor Al Gore and feels like he owes him this vote. What about us!?
Ugh. If you have time, there are still Congressmen on the fence and calls mean a lot to them and sometimes affects how they vote. Can't tell you how glad I am I took the time today.
Higher Taxes and Economic Devastation in Return for ... Nothing? Article.
"Regardless of the CBO's cost estimates of the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade program, the necessary second part of the question--what benefits do the costs generate?--remains unanswered.
"Americans will get almost nothing in exchange for these higher taxes, and the legislation will provide nothing for future generations except more debt and less economic opportunity.
"According to climatologist Chip Knappenberger, Waxman-Markey would moderate temperatures by only hundredths of a degree in 2050 and no more than two-tenths of a degree at the end of the century. This does not sound like a great deal for the next generation--millions of lost jobs, trillions of lost income, 50-90 percent higher energy prices, and stunning increases in the national debt, all for undetectable changes in world temperature.
"The CBO analysis of Waxman-Markey fails to take into account all the adverse effects that will ripple through the U.S. economy if cap and trade becomes law. CBO's grossly underestimated costs means Members of Congress will be grossly misinformed when voting on the legislation."
Thursday, June 25, 2009
CONTACT INFO US SENATORS/CONGRESSMEN. TIME OF THE ESSENCE! NANCY P. TO RAHM THIS THROUGH HOUSE FRIDAY. Gore stays in Tennessee working phone lines.
ACT NOW TO OPPOSE the greatest tax on the American people ever enacted, not to mention the largest increase in government regulation into our lives ever conjured up.
Al, below, looks and sounds like Simon Bar Sinister.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
SO DISAPPOINTED today on hearing the news of Gov. Mark Sanford's affair with an Argentine woman. I'm sad for his wife and four boys, sad for South Carolina and sad for our country's diverted attention from more important events here and Iran. Then again, maybe this is something we need to look at.. I'm glad his wife Jenny has asked him to leave home and also glad they are attempting to reconcile their marriage.
It's time for her and them to draw some hard lines. Define themselves to themselves and each other.
If Sanford doesn't give up this exotic woman soon and completely, then his wife should leave him sooner rather than later and grieve the loss of their marriage. They can either grow together or she'll grow as she cuts the cord and lets this man stew in his own juices.
Not a great model for his sons, though it's all redeemable.
Sanford stands at the greatest crossroad of his life. He will either grow from here, now or lose a great deal personally and professionally, as rightly he should. He can't have it both ways though we all wish we could. Perhaps he'll decide to give his life up here for sexual infatuation---a good, good friend, as he describes it. After all there's a lot of great fishing and hiking in Argentina.
I'm very sad to see this all happen. The whole power/ aphrodisiac thing is an equal opportunity home and profession wrecker, irregardless of political party or religious affiliation. It also has a way of bringing big egos down. This is no exception.
Sanford is old enough to know better than to think becoming "good friends" with a divorcing, attractive woman with whom he shared intimate emails and advice for EIGHT years---wherever she's lived---wouldn't sooner or later lead to sexual intimacy and fireworks. His judgment is sadly lacking and his selfishness is overwhelming.
He's taken the lazy man's way out in dealing with his marital issues. It's always easier to have faux intimacy with a fantasy person than to deal with what needs to be dealt with in the day-to-day real world of marriage. My heart goes out for Sanford's family.
Comments will be limited.
FOR A FAMOUS instance of same-sex marriage, the first in the recorded history of the West, we can read Suetonius’ account in The Twelve Caesars of the emperor Nero’s betrothal to a certain Sporus, going through “a wedding ceremony with him — dowry, bridal veil, and all — which the whole court attended.” Nero couldn’t get enough of what he reckoned a good thing and later married his freedman Doryphyrus. This exercise was only one among many of Nero’s extravagances, but it is symptomatic of an accelerating cultural degeneracy......
Recent legislation favoring same-sex marriage is not, in my view, an indicator of a compassionate and socially progressive culture as many have automatically presumed.
It is, rather, a prime indicator of decadence, the weakening of common sense, and the dissipation of belief in a common future.
What we do in our private lives is for the most part our own business, but in the public sphere the disciplined adherence to the principle of continuity is indispensable. The fiscal and social amenities that accrue to the married condition are a form of recompensation, a reward for the duties of procreation and bringing up children in, ideally, a stable environment.
There is no reason for gay unions to profit from status recognition, tax breaks, pension and inheritance rights, family courts, civil enactments, and the like. These are privileges that must be earned and that reflect the labor and sacrifice involved in the reproduction of the generations.
What else is there that renders us deserving of such exemptions and prerogatives? Unions which are in their nature unreproductive do not merit special dispensation by the state, as if Big Brother had turned into Big Daddy.
This is not a moral question we are debating but a civilizational requisite we forfeit at our peril.
The issue is not the bed but the altar. People can sleep with whom they wish, live with whom they want, but legal vetting and economic advantages are properly accorded to the progenitive or, since not all marriages are fecund, the potentially fertile. The beneficiaries of legal recognition and appropriate indemnification should be those who have invested in, or are at least capable of endowing, the larger social enterprise, namely, perpetuation.
We have now entered the realm of farce. The Ontario Court of Appeal, for example, adjudicating a case in which a lesbian couple accepted a sperm donation from a homosexual friend, decided that a child may have two legal mothers and that the donor father may claim access. Clearly, marriage and the nuclear family are being reconstrued out of existence by a Carrollian judiciary since the precedent that has been established is effectively non-containable.
Indeed, Piet Hein Donner, Dutch minister of justice, has recently pleaded the case for the legitimacy of polyamorous “group marriage.”
Adding to the element of burlesque is the fact that it is now the gay community among the secular population that appears to have become the most outspoken stakeholder in the traditional institution of marriage. No matter. There is little future in an empty crèche.
Pregnancy in the developed world has tended to become something of a fashion statement and marriage a ritual performance to validate the barren. As Claire Berlinski writes in her dirge for a civilization, Menace in Europe, “Not since the Great Plague has Europe’s population been so dramatically gutted,” the reproductive replacement rate plunging sharply below the magic number of 2.1.
Only in those Western nations still committed to preserving their historical and cultural lineage do the numbers resist erosion: the United States, which — up to now at any rate — has maintained the ratio, and Israel, which exceeds it.
It is truly as if we no longer wish to perpetuate ourselves and to take custodial responsibility for the future but instead prefer to knit our energies and loyalties to a convergent present, the acquisition of ancillaries, career and sensations, immediate remunerations, the cult of private pleasure, and political infatuations that pander to our easy sense of righteousness and our emotional autism.
The global warming hysteria with its avowed planetary solicitude does not invalidate the hypothesis. Based on demonstrably incomplete science and riven by contradictions and bogus claims, the ecological crescendo has become a process whereby the New Age pursuit of self-esteem and “self-realization” is magnified as the salvation of the earth. It has not occurred to our environmental zealots that without children, there is no afterward, regardless of the temperature.
In effect, the Western individual has “progressively” tended to become a pure consumer preoccupied chiefly with the aggrandizement of self, owing as often as not to his or her credentials as a member of some presumably marginalized class, group, organization, or faction. Profiting from an ethnology of complaint, resentment, immunity, and special treatment, he or she manifests as what the French philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari in Anti-Oedipus called a “desiring machine...”
This condition of domestic recreancy and unfettered emotivity comprises, as much as anything else, a “clear and present danger.” It is a danger that may assume many different forms, including, as we have seen, the social redefinition of marriage in terms of the couple rather than in terms of the children.
As Allan Bloom (despite his own sexual leanings) cogently argued in The Closing of the American Mind, since the family must be understood as both the nucleus and reflection of the larger civilization, the fate of the latter cannot be separated from that of the former.
It is important that the distinction I am making between same-sex unions and same-sex marriage is not interpreted as a form of homophobia. What I am saying is that, unlike the freedom to choose one’s erotic or live-in partners, same-sex marriage is not a civil rights issue, as many activists erroneously claim. Rather, it is the right to express one’s sexual orientation without fear of repressive legal measures or state persecution that qualifies as a civil rights issue.
But the legal and plenary status of traditional marriage is integral to the welfare and propagation of culture, society, and civilization and must therefore be safeguarded.
Gays have come out of the closet and entered common life without shame or inhibition, which is a necessary and desirable outcome of liberating social movements. It does not mean, however, that a person’s heteroclite sexual choices permit him or her to enter the Constitution or the sacraments, that is, into state-sanctioned formal arrangements.
The individual’s sexual orientation and erotic preferences, as such, have nothing to do with the state, any more than his or her appetites, tastes, reveries, longings, or dreams can be legislated or licensed. Given the virtues of limited government and the proviso of non-interference in the private and intimate life of its citizens, the state’s proper objective is to ensure the security and survival of the society which it serves.
In this regard, upholding the institution of marriage is critical. If, for example, we lived in a Hollywood/Arnold Schwarzenegger world, as in the film Junior, in which a man could bear a child, there would be no scruple over waiving the legal impediments to same-sex marriage. Regrettably, this is not the case, transgender Thomas Beatie, a.k.a. Tracy Lagondino, notwithstanding. Beatie, after all, assuming his much-publicized claim to pregnancy is not a hoax, did not have his reproductive organs surgically altered.
Same-sex marriage is quite literally a no-brainer. Predicated on the disintegration of a fundamental structure of social and civilizational viability and the desertification of the womb, it’s only function is to deplete society of a sustainable future while catering to the whims and “needs” of what we might call the “group individual.” All this under the sign of “progressivism,” a doctrine that has espoused the ideology of identity politics in which group membership trumps both the autonomous individual and the larger social contract.
Same-sex marriage is both a cause and an effect of the pervasive narcissism and acedia that is coming more and more to characterize the therapeutic world we live in — a world in which the state replaces the community, recreational sex is promoted at the expense of procreational sex, an improvisatory legalism does duty for traditional morality, the underdog has been rebadged as the overlord, and the group individual rejoices in the grievances which empower him.....
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
SURE, SURE some hats look silly and ridiculous on some women. But when you know how to wear one and also what looks smashing on you and your unique coquetishness, there's nothing more feminine and wonderful than a lady in a hat, especially a hat with netting over part of her face. Only part, mind you. Here's a series in the fashion section of The Telegraph on hats (in that, only two or three capture my fancy). Nevertheless I'll link to the article and let you be the judge.
Monday, June 22, 2009
VOICES OF WOMEN DO NOT MATTER HERE
The Stoning of Saroya M is a true story of the cold blooded murder of a woman falsely accused of adultery by her husband in an Iranian village in 1986. It's a movie we all should see and its poignancy won't be lost on all of us who've watched unprecedented protests unfold in the streets of Iran over the last few weeks. I've always wondered where all the so-called liberal, elite East coast feminists are when stories like this surface. They never seem to be very bothered by the oppression and slavery of Muslim woman who are treated more like livestock and chattel than human beings.
Andrew Klaven writes in the WSJ on the Tragedy of Multiculturalism in Iran. The take-home message is this: No matter what anyone says, all ideologies---and religions---are not the same. They are not all equally good and morally equivalent. And anyone who really thinks this should leave this country now and go try living in one of these morally bankrupt political systems.
Chuck Devore reviews the movie for Big Hollywood. I don't want to miss this one though I'm sure it will be heavy.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
In all unbelief there are these two things—--a good opinion of one’s self and a bad opinion of God.
Man’s good opinion of himself makes him think it quite possible to win God’s favor by his own religious performances; and his bad opinion of God makes him unwilling and afraid to put his case wholly into His hands.
The object of the Holy Spirit’s work (in convincing of sin) is to alter the sinner’s opinion of himself, and so to reduce his estimate of his own character that he shall think of himself as God does, and so cease to suppose it possible that he can be justified by an excellency of his own. The Spirit then alters his evil opinion of God, so as to make him see that the God with whom he has to do is really the God of all grace.
But the inquirer denies that he has a good opinion of himself and owns himself a sinner. Now a man may SAY this, but really to KNOW it is something more than SAYING. Besides, he may be willing to take the name of sinner to himself, in common with his fellow-men, and yet not at all own himself such a sinner as God says he is—such a sinner as needs the cross, and blood, and righteousness of the Son of God. It takes a great deal to destroy a man’s good opinion of himself; how difficult it is to make a man think of himself as God does! What but the almightiness of the Divine Spirit can accomplish this?
Unbelief, then, is the belief of a lie and the rejection of the truth. Accept, then, the character of God as given in the gospel; the Holy Spirit will not give you peace irrespective of your views of God’s character. It is in connection with THE TRUTH concerning the true God, “the God of all grace,” that the Spirit gives peace. That which He shows us of ourselves is only evil; that which He shows us of God is only good!
Friday, June 19, 2009
It's the story of a small band of Special Forces from Ft. Campbell, Kentucky who were ordered to Afghanistan by Bush's Defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld immediately after 9/11. After getting the order, these secret soldiers were airlifted, then dropped there days after the attack on our homeland. Little did these brave men know what they were getting into behind enemy lines or that they would very soon become accomplished horseman warriors under tribal war lords fighting the Taliban in some of the roughest terrain in the world.
My kind of book! When I start, I don't plan to stop. If you want to fall in love with the military again, and if you want one of the great reads of your summer, then consider putting this on your list. And when I've gotten to it, I'll come back and tell you more.
Meanwhile, some Amazon reviews.
And from Simon and Schuster:
Horse Soldiers is the dramatic account of a small band of Special Forces soldiers who secretly entered Afghanistan following 9/11 and rode to war on horses against the Taliban. The bone-weary American soldiers were welcomed as liberators, and overjoyed Afghans thronged the streets. Then the action took a wholly unexpected turn. During a surrender of six hundred Taliban troops, the Horse Soldiers were ambushed. Dangerously outnumbered, they fought for their lives. At risk were the military gains of the entire campaign: if the soldiers perished or were captured, the effort to defeat the Taliban might be doomed.
Until now the full story of the Horse Soldiers has never been told. Author Doug Stanton received unprecedented cooperation from the U.S. Army's Special Forces soldiers and Special Operations helicopter pilots, as well as access to voluminous after-battle reports.
In addition, he interviewed more than one hundred participants and walked every inch of the climactic battleground.
Reaching across the cold mountains of Afghanistan and into the homes of small-town America, Horse Soldiers is a big-hearted and thrilling epic story from one of our preeminent storytellers.
That and it's all true taking Stanton years to interview, research and to write!
BESIDES WRITING HERE AT WEBUTANTE which I love, love, love, I have a couple of other jobs that keep me busy during the work week: 1) I'm a stock trader--- one of the most fun and challenging jobs I've ever had. Keeps the mind sharp and the spirit very, very, very humble. Especially in these wild markets which maketh believers in humbleness of us all.
Job One is to always preserve capital by not losing a lot of money. It has taken me years just to get to the point of not losing a lot of money. (IBD has taught me so much over the years!) The next step is to actually make a little money in either an up or a down market. It's a challenge, but one I find extremely satisfactory. To make a few hundred or a few thousand here and there is icing on the cake of my life. It supplements my blogging and fly fishing habits, by bringing in a little cash flow.
Lately and for the foreseeable future, I've spent more of my computer time each day on the trading, rather than the blogging side of the Internet because it actually brings in money and I want to make as much as I can before the economy collapses and/or the government taxes us into oblivion. I'm seriously not kidding.
The other work I do is 2) I buy an occasional down-and-out, rundown house with good bones, renovate it with my own style and then turn it into a rental property with a monthly cash flow.
I'm never out to make a killing. But I love to make something I consider wonderful out of a rundown structure and use my old engineering skills in the process. Most of all I love the opportunity to bring new light and spaciousness into small, dark spaces. It's a woman thing, I guess. I'm never done with it until I've kept costs low and the finished product is something I'd move into myself.
For the past few months when I'm in town, I've been working with my intrepid contractor Ed on the latest house we've bought and are renovating together. It's been a wonderful project. The teamwork between us out in the real world makes it all happen.We've been doing this for about 7-8 years. I wouldn't have started this without Ed.
What makes all this especially satisfactory is the Ed can do, make anything. And he, like me enjoys doing it on a shoe string. That's the fun of it and he's taught me a lot over the years. I've probably taught him a little too. Somehow we work well together, though we butt horns often. I know when to back off with him and he with me. And the finished product is usually better than I and we could ever imagine.
But the nicest part of all is that through Ed, Iwe are able to employ men who have families and bills to pay, making a very small positive impact on the economy. Yesterday, Ed and I spent several hours at the Habitat store here buying sows ears that we could turn into silk purses--- kitchen cabinets that we bought at 1/4 price.
Won't get it rented until I get back from the West late this summer. But I trust, the right person or family will find its way to it. Will post some pictures later of the finished product. These guys are the best and there's no way to thank them enough for the great work they're doing.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
WHOLE LOTTA SHAKING GOING ON
What's going on in the markets continues to be a tug-of-war between the stock and the bond markets, between the dollar and the non-dollar (commodities).
Meanwhile, things have gotten crazier and crazier at the Fed (under Bernanke) and Treasury (under Geithner).
How nuts you ask? For starters and among other things, Treasury is selling more and more bonds (our burgeoning debt) to pay for run-away, out-of-control spending by the federal government and Obama administration, and the Fed is buying it up and counting it as an asset!
Both agencies are doing little bookkeeping sleights of hand to make our country look as if it's not nearly as bad off as we really are.
This entire deal is a massive House of Cards that will come crashing down. Only question is when and how devastating the carnage when our national bankruptcy is seen for what it really is. It won't be pretty and it certainly won't be fun. And it may not right itself in many of our lifetimes.
Markets fading, fading, fading.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
WHERE would a despicable dictator like Atomic Ahmad be hiding out while millions of voters in his country start a revolution in protest of his fraudulent re-election last week? They're mad as hell and they're not going gently into the night. Surely, you don't think he's waiting around twiddling his thumbs in Tehran, do you?
Here are some possible answers, in case you don't know:
a) Damascus, Syria
b) Los Angeles, California
c) Jerusalem, Israel
d) Moscow, Russia
e) Istanbul, Turkey
f) On a Love Boat cruise around the Baltics
Answer later with links....and rest assured, he's not in Iran or anywhere close. Even though he may act self-assured, he's running scared right now. As well he should be. Wouldln't it be amazing if he never was able to return to his country?!
Joel Rosenberg has the correct ANSWER , d) Moscow, Russia.
There's little middle ground regarding reaction to Tennessee Senates' vote Tuesday rejecting a proposal to erect a privately funded statue of Al Gore---and Cordell Hull---both Nobel prize winners---on state capital grounds.
The rationale for rejecting the statue was that it must depict someone who has already gone to his reward, rather than still reaping it here on planet Earth with inconvenient truths.
Of course, Mr. Gore has not, nor has he made any noises to the effect that he's inclined to shuffle off this mortal coil any time soon. Never mind that Mr. Hull, who helped establish the, ahem, United Nations in 1945, died in 1955.
Still, some would say it was all about politics: It was pretty much a vote down party lines, though Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey voted with the Democrats to erect the statue.
Supporters said Gore's achievements as a politician and Nobel Peace Prize winner were sufficient to waive a long-standing state policy against building statues to the living.
But opponents said the verdict on Gore is still out until he passes away.
"Things change over time," said Sen. Ken Yager, R-Harriman. "Sometimes we may erect a statue and a person changes. … It's probably a better rule to wait until a person is dead."
As to my take on the matter. What can I say except to agree with conventional wisdom: He's not dead yet. He's not dead yet...and so forth and so on...
No surprise, the liberal Nashville Scene didn't take kindly to this deicision by lawmakers. How dare lawmakers deny its king his honor during his lifetime!
Monday, June 15, 2009
TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONES, THEY CAN DETECT YOU....
NOT SINCE THE 1979 Iranian Revolution that deposed the Shah (our ally who then-president Jimmy Carter turned his back on) and installed the dreadful mullahs (again, thank Jimmy) has there been such an outpouring of protest and pent-up anger in the streets of Tehran. Holy Moses, what a crowd! An estimated 1.5 million people took to the streets to demonstrate against the fraudulent re-election of the little man who would soon be known as Atomic Ahmadinejad.
Maybe I've been too focused on the Fed's antics and stock market sideways trading to see it coming, but this amazing, dazzling show of resistance and protest literally takes my breath away.
And you know what? We should take some BIG lessons from these brave Iranians and gear ourselves up to march on Washington, D.C if things continue to go downhill with out-of-control government spending and bureaucracy.
We should go and make a huge, huge scene---blocking traffic, causing business-as-usual to-grind to a halt until we've re-established some accountability with our elected officials. Karl Denninger tells why we taxpayers in the U.S. we should be outraged and then go and do something loud and unruly about it.
Meanwhile, The Washington Times has more on the growing unrest in Tehran:
Opposition candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi, who many here think was the real victor of Friday's elections, emerged from seclusion for the first time since the vote to address the crowd, which was estimated to number as many as 1.5 million people.
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Muslim cleric who initially confirmed an Ahmadinejad victory, abruptly changed direction and promised a probe into allegations of ballot-rigging, although it was not clear whether the action was merely a ploy to curb unrest.
I doubt anything is going to curb this soon. The mullahs never counted on Twitter, the horizontal platform that shakes and rattles vertical tyranny and oppression.
Michael Ledeen writes at Pajamas:
What’s going to happen?, you ask. Nobody knows, even the major actors. The regime has the guns, and the opposition has the numbers. The question is whether the numbers can be successfully organized into a disciplined force that demands the downfall of the regime.
Yes, I know that there have been calls for a new election, or a runoff between Mousavi and Ahmadinezhad. But I don’t think that’s very likely now.
The tens of millions of Iranians whose pent-up rage has driven them to risk life and limb against their oppressors are not likely to settle for a mere change in personnel at this point. And the mullahs surely know that if they lose, many of them will face a very nasty and very brief future.
If the disciplined force comes into being, the regime will fall. If not, the regime will survive.
Thanks, Greg for Tweeting my interest.
Sure government can try to bail us out of these chronic diseases, if only temporarily, but the cost to taxpayers is enormous and growing exponentially. The system will one day collapse of its own weight (no pun intended).
According to this editorial, Safeway is doing its part to reduce government spending and skyrocketing health costs by rewarding its employees for healthy behaviors in the form of lower premiums. Read Burd's piece.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
William Moody and his younger brother, Paul, were both dearly loved by their father yet had little in common with one another. William, ten years older than Paul, was serious and formal with conservative theological beliefs. Paul was a theological liberal and had an easygoing nature and reputation as a practical joker.
In addition to large campaigns for which he was well known, D.L. Moody shifted his focus to Christian education in order to bring the gospel to the masses. In 1879 Moody started Northfield Seminary for girls and in 1881 Mount Herman School for boys in his birthplace of Northfield, Massachusetts. They became known as "The Northfield Schools."
Then, in 1887 Moody launched the Bible-Work Institute of the Chicago Evangelization Society, renamed Moody Bible Institute shortly after his death.
Both Willaim and Paul graduated from Yale. Moody intended that his sons would jointly manage the Northfield Schools after his death. However, soon after their father's death, the brothers became estranged, their differing theologies causing them continual conflict.
Believing Paul would change the school's theology if he could, Will decided to force Paul out of leadership by consolidating the two schools. On April 8, 1912, a bill proposing the merger of the two schools was presented to the Committee on Mercantile Affairs of Massachusetts and was passed. Paul was in Chicago at the time and did not have a chance to voice his opinion.
Will ended up serving in a general leadership role over both the Northfield Schools and also the Moody Bible Institute. He also published the first biography of his father's life.
Paul achieved a distinguished career for himself outside the Moody enterprises, becoming an influential voice in the liberal wing of American Protestantism. He graduated from Hartford Theological Seminary and became pastor of a church in Vermont. During WW1 he served as senior chaplain of the American Expeditionary Forces. After the war he served as president of Middlebury College for twenty-one years. Like his brother, Paul published a biography of his father's life.
Whereas the Northfield Schools evolved into typical New England private academies, Moody Bible Institute became America's premier Bible institute. By the late 1920s it had one thousand students in its day and evening programs. In 2000, it had 1,400 day students and 18,000 in its extension and correspondence programs. Moody Bible Institute has trained more foreign missionaries than any school in the world.
----The One Year Christian History, E. Michael and Sharon Rusten
They will act as if they are religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly. You must stay away from people like that. (ed. note---Timothy is talking about staying away from teachers who preach false doctrine.)
-----2 Timothy 3:5
Friday, June 12, 2009
EVERYONE WHO FLY FISHES FOR LONG has tales of the big ones they've caught and released. I know I sure do. Most of time, they involve playing a trout well, getting it to the net for a good look and photo op, removing the barbless hook then releasing it back to the watery denizens from whence it came. The whole process is one of life's greatest natural highs and adrenaline rushes.
Then there are those sad, sad stories of the BIG ONES that got away.
When relationships go south our tendency is to project blame on the other, exonerate ourselves and walk away having gained, at least in our own minds, a certain sense of self-righteousness and righteous indignation. Taking that kind of stance keeps us in a permanent state of puerile victimhood and frequently makes for less skill and understanding in the next go-round of relationships.
It's always sad myth-making when we take ourselves off the hook of culpability so easily, only focusing on what's wrong out there. But that's another post, for another day.
If however you decide to learn to fly fish, you very quickly ascertain that there's no one else to blame but yourself when a big one gets away. After all, it's a fish's sole job to throw that hook and scram as fast as it can. It's the fisherman's skilled job not to let that happen. When it does, the fisher had best figure out what went wrong, learn the lessons and get on with being better for the whole damn frustrating experience.
Enough philosophizing. Last weekend I lost a big one after successfully bringing in two nice fish while fishing with David Perry of Southeast Fly. It was a heart breaker since it was the biggest catch of the day. I've gone over and over in my mind this week the details of this. Stuff like this happens, but it should never happen the same way twice.
While I won't bore my few readers with most of the details that lead to my losing this nice, big fish, I will say that it involved 1) using a piece of equipment I was unfamiliar with---David had loaned me a rod and reel--with an drag system I wasn't used to--- and 2) trying to do something that I don't normally do--- playing the fish from the reel rather than off the reel through my fingers--my greatest strength---like I usually do, and 3) bringing the fish almost to David's net, getting a good look then deciding to letting it run again. In other words, I had him at the net and decided to show off by going another round of playing him.
Then heartbreak! My line temporarily caught in the drag system and the fish immediately took advantage of my momentary dis-repair, sprung the line and bested my best efforts to bring him in again.
NO CIGAR, big time for me.
Suffice it that I got the hard lessons. And after all's said and done-- can not wait to get back out there and do it all again!!
The ones that get away always offer us the greatest, biggest, brightest opportunities to grow and grow up and to enlarge our repertoire of skills. That's why I passionately love and learn from this fabulous sport called fly fishing. And occasionally apply these lessons to other parts of my life.
I'll be back with more later, but if you own any commodities stocks, commodities ETFs, it behooves you and me to have tight stops/take some profits on them today and for the foreseeable future.
It appears that the tug-of war between the dollar verses commodities has just been won by the dollar, at least for now. I'll be back later with more on the very volatile markets and what it may mean for average investors. For now and a while, I'll be on the trading side of the computer.
We are living in most interesting times.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
CALL ME CRAZY, and it won't be the first time, but I really like Michelle's look here and think it's sassy and spunky. The snake belt and yellow sash thingy below the belt that's been decried by conservatives everywhere as hideous and disgraceful to our country, our Constitution, not to mention Westminster Abbey, works for me, especially with the little pale yellow sweater that pulls it together.
All I can say is if we don't have more to write about than dissing this outfit, then we're pretty desperate....that goes especially for Drudge who headlined this bit of news (?!?)today, for heavens sake. But hey, it's a slow news day and Michelle's edgy outfit is easy fodder for the snake mill. So what if she wore it breezing through The Abbey? Would have done it myself.
The outrage is hilarious, if you ask me. BTW, she looks great in those flat heel shoes and carries her considerable height well.
Make no mistake, this woman has a sassy style her own and it's not going away. While I certainly don't like everything she wears--or almost anything her husband does-- this one does not offend me in the least. In fact it delights me especially since it's been pulled off in London.
I'm no great fan of Michelle, however, I love this and after a good night's sleep may have more to say. One footnote is that crazy yellow sash which has everyone so worked up about works well precisely because it's farther from her face and in exactly the right place... That kind of yellow too close to one's face can be as devastating as a bad night's sleep.
Now let's go have some tea and scones with marmalade, deary. You can certainly afford to spill a little jelly on your lappy in this one!
Monday, June 8, 2009
WHEN A WOMAN has a bad day, it's often about her hair. We agonize. We face hair desperation alone, in the bathroom in front of a mirror. With brushes, gel, heating irons, scissors, chocolate. If things don't get better fast, we often call for an emergency appointment with our stylist (isn't that what we're supposed to call them now?), hoping for an opening in ten minutes.
But men's bad days, let's face it, are never about hair--- theirs, ours, or any body else's.
Safe to say, 99.99999% of the time, men's bad days usually have to do with engines and motorized vehicles: V-6s, V-8s, V-whatevers. Trucks, cars, motorcycles, planes, motorboats, jet skis etc. Basically anything that moves from Point A to B fast---on land, in water, through air by means of horsepower.
When bad truck/ motor days happen to them, men deal very differently than alone in powder rooms in front of a mirrors.
They love these kind of days (it hurts so good!) cause it gives them a chance to bond while they go about fixing something loud and mechanical, yet practical. We women struggle alone in secret, but the guys struggle, groan and moan out-in-the-open--together!
No man who sees another guy suffering with a bad engine or broke truck is going to let him suffer alone. There's no such a reality.
Here's my a universal law: The worse the problem seems, the more guys will appear to fix it. They often magically materialize from nowhere, as if out-of-the woodwork.
So it was Saturday as David Perry rowed us to the takeout ramp (engine-less, but not without strong arms, long oars and good current) at Betty's Island on the Caney Fork river, I had the opportunity to see my theory proved in practice. See for yourself below:
Man with pick-up, towing boat trailer backs down boat ramp to pick up motorboat and mis-estimates stopping distance. Either he decides to roll on down just a little further or his emergency brake doesn't work. At the same time, the river starts to rise due to commencement of power generation ( really big turbine engines upstream) at Center Hill Dam. Instantly men begin to materialize from all directions as they see potential engine/truck problems, not to mention possible boat and water problems.
Truck-boat-water problems are the most fun of all for men to solve most of the time. Splashing around in cold water on a hot summer day adds to the importance.
More men gravitate towards the boat, being drug off its trailer far from its truck.....
After 25 minutes of a heavy-lifting, hernia producing male bonding, the truck is successfully dragged/wenched out of the rising water. The trailer first detached is re-attached. The motorboat however remains in the river instead of on the trailer behind the truck. The men decide to let the river rise more before re-uniting boat with trailer and truck. They continue working, bonding as we leave the boat ramp. No one doubts men's final victory over truck, boat, trailer and potential engine failure and rising water....
Mission almost, but not completely, accomplished.....male bonding/problem solving continue....A good time is had by all on a bad truck day......
Meanwhile, river guide version of the Maytag repair man--- today--- soldiers on alone at the takeout with no truck problems, no engine problems, no boat problems and, best of all, no fishing problems. A good day for a guy. Somebody has to have it.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
THIS WEEK, Tim Challis whom I link to below had a post this week entitled Little Evils, Little Sins and how they can lead to much much bigger, intractable sins in our lives and relationships. It's the kind of piece I prefer to scroll past and ignore. Insignificant, I thought to myself and moved on. Later, however, something inside told me to go back. So I reluctantly listened, returned. I'm so sorry I did, because, it convicted me of its great truths, of how sin really works in our lives. Challis uses the symbolism of the Pacific campaign of World War Two and Americans strategy of how Americans stopped Japanese aggression by taking back little island Japanese strongholds that seemed insignificant. This tactic eventually led to a big American victory over the Japanese.
Point being that taking hold of the little sins in our lives is where we have to start if our lives are ever to be turned around: Spending more money than we have and putting on credit cards, half-truths we tell a friend, a sexual fantasy about someone we think is attractive...all little things that can slowly, subtly over time lead to big financial, moral and sexual decay, then bankruptcy. And ruin lives and relationships.
I highly recommend Challis' piece if you're willing to be a little uncomfortable this Sunday. For me, it's a good opportunity to sit down and continue my ongoing fearless moral inventory and ask God's help in taking back little islands I've let go of recently. I do this through new awareness, prayer, repentance and asking for God's strength one moment at a time. Others do it a little differently, but with the same healing effects.
Saturday, June 6, 2009
A JEEP DROVE by Saint-Laurent-sur-Mer Beach in Normandy, France, Thursday where preparations were being made for celebrations to mark Saturday’s 65th anniversary of the June 6, 1944, allied landings in France, then occupied by Nazi Germany.
President Barack Obama will lead services where more than 9,000 U.S. troops fought and died.
Friday, June 5, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
FT.com opines Friday on President Obama's speech to the Muslim world:
Even before the speech, there were signs that thanks to his personal appeal, the US’s battered image in the Arab world was starting to improve. There were also hints that in Iran, for example, Mr Obama was perceived by the regime as more threatening than George W. Bush because of his ability to present a more moderate face of America.
But the speech also poses risks for Mr Obama. While he addressed masterfully the conflicting pressures the US faces in the region, he will find translating them into coherent policies far more challenging, if not impossible.
Mr Obama called for a joint effort to create a world where extremists no longer threatened Americans, US troops returned home, Israelis and Palestinians lived in secure states of their own, and nuclear energy was used only for peaceful purposes. It is an ambitious vision that would transform the Middle East, but it raises expectations far beyond the US’s ability to deliver.
As an American citizen and observer of history, I have to say the president continued his charm tour in the Middle East with typical and eloquent appeal and trademark attractiveness. It was a good speech (Joel has excerpts above if you click the link.) that makes you walk away feeling good. We love those warm fuzzies, don't we? And the Obamas are nothing if not warm fuzzy-making machines to those they deem fuzzible (I just invented a new word.)
While there may be new-found goodwill with some Arab/Muslim nations and their leaders as a result of this trip, and I hope and pray there is, have to say that extremist terrorists who are mass killers for Islam will not be the slightest affected by Obama's charm. If anything, they'll recommit themselves to wrecking much more havoc as soon as they can.
Words are important. Yet, how the president puts his words into action and some sort of US domestic and foreign policy will be most important test. If this leads Obama to continue to diss our American roots, our history as a Christian nation and our recent experience with Islamic jihad, then he may win a battle with Arabs/Muslims for a short time but lose the war---in more ways than one--especially with the American people.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
A VERY SHORT ONE-ACT PLAY, U.S. ROTUNDA
NANCY P: Hello, Nancy, I've always disliked you. Still do. And I didn't like Ronnie either. Hated all those dreaful tax cuts! But, my publicity has been so bad lately---what with all the CIA interrogation bru-ha and my accusing them of lying--- I really need a BIG photo op with you that makes me look like a real human being again. That's why I'm sitting here hugging you pretending to like you when I really don't. So glad you came to unveil this big statute of Ronnie.
NANCY R: You're not exactly my cup of tea either, Lady McBeth! Let Go! You're smothering me! Please! Stop! You're suffocating me! Who's doing your botox? Four Seasons or the Ritz Carlton? You're cracking my ribs! It feels like a vice-grip on me. You'll send me to Walter Reed! Let go!
NANCY P: Listen honey, I am the most powerful, strong woman in the world now in case you don't know! I wear the pants suits around here.... and when I say jump, the whole world jumps...You're just the widow of a once-famous President who's gone and has fallen from political grace. Tax cuts are history! And it won't be long till the Berlin Wall goes back up! I'll hug you and smile as much as I want to. And you can't do one thing about it. I'm the boss now.
NANCY R: Oh please! I'll call for help and make a scene. Let me go! I still have a little clout here. Jim Baker will come to my rescue.... If that doesn't work, I'll call Andrew Breitbart and tell him what you did to me! He'll smear it all over the internet...
NANCY P: OK. OK, but just keep smiling a little longer. I was about to give you a back-handed compliment on your support for stem-cell research....I'll tell everyone how many lives you've saved by supporting MY cause. I'll make you a hero if ....you'll let us finish this photo op .... just a few more seconds.
NANCY R: Nancy! Nancy! Such poor breeding! You're time is up. In five seconds I'm going to scream bloody murder and make a scene if you don't let go.......Jim!!
(Nancy P. slowly loosens her grip on Nancy R. who breaths a deep sigh of relief that her ordeal in Washington and on Capitol Hill is almost over.....she silently tells herself she'll never come back to this pit of vipers----ever again!)
Nancy P gets up, straightens her jacket, then heads back to the House powder room to reapply lip gloss. Nancy P departs with Jim in a limo heading back to Reagan International for a non-stop back to John Wayne.
The End.... for now.
AIRBUS: Pilots May Have Slowed Plane Down Too Much Causing a High-Altitude Aerodymanic Stall THURSDAY UPDATE: Daily Mail: Oil Slick Trail in Atlantic Now Makes Terrorism Theory Highly Unlikely.
BACK TO WEATHER CAUSED: The report said the pilot sent a manual signal at 11 p.m. local time saying he was flying through an area of "CBs" -- black, electrically charged cumulo-nimbus clouds that come with violent winds and lightning. Satellite data has shown that towering thunderheads were sending 100 mph (160 kph) winds straight into the jet's flight path at that time.
Ten minutes later, the plane sent a burst of automatic messages, indicating the autopilot had disengaged, the "fly-by-wire" computer system had been switched to alternative power, and controls needed to keep the plane stable had been damaged. An alarm also sounded, indicating the deterioration of flight systems, according to the report.
Three minutes after that, more automatic messages indicated the failure of two other fundamental systems pilots use to monitor air speed, altitude and direction. Then, a cascade of other electrical failures in systems that control the main flight computer and wing spoilers.
TODAY, June 3, 2009 marks the 47th anniversary of another tragic crash of an Air France chartered jet outside Paris on June 3, 1962 that killed 130 people, mostly from Atlanta, Georgia.
The victims--mostly art patrons from that community---were returning to Atlanta after a week touring art galleries and museums in Europe in preparation for one to be built in Atlanta. The plane never got off the ground that day.
Several of my "cousins" --- three children of my uncle's brother---were orphaned when both their parents died instantly in this terrible crash on takeoff from an Orly Airport runway. Today it's described as a 9-11 event for the city of Atlanta.
I am friends with Linda the oldest daughter of these three children who lost both their parents. Last night I called to say I was thinking about her. She reminded me that today is the anniversary of the day that changed their lives forever. And the irony of the latest Air France catastrophe---within 48 hours of the old one 47 years ago---was not and is not lost on her: It's truly unbelievable! she said, not surprisingly.
It is indeed more than ironic that the catastrophic crash and growing possible terrorist attack on Air France 447 as it cruised from Buenos Aires, Argentina to Paris in the middle of the night Sunday would happen within 48 hours of the old crash at Orly. Though the causes were very different
While all crashes are horrifying and poignant sometimes beyond human comprehension, the recent disappearance of Air France 447 has an even more frightening ring. Is there a possibility is was an act of terrorism? Not engine failure. Not thunderstorms. Not lightning.
Possibly, Just Evil doing Evil anyway it can. With no regard for human life on earth. It regards chaos, death, destruction and overcoming the world with its Evil intentions its highest calling. We certainly know it's not the first time for blowing up commercial airliners. The remembrance of the Lockerbie, Scotland air crash tragedy still brings pain to our hearts and causes us to suspect foul play as a possibility in all crashes.
May God help us all and comfort the many families and friends involved in this tragic event whatever the cause.
I will be praying for them all, as well as my family members and all who lost so much in the old Air France crash that happened 47 years ago today.
The recovery effort is expected to be exceedingly challenging. Storm season is starting in the are and water depths sink down to 22,950 feet (7,000 meters).
Four boats and a tanker ship were en route to the scene but Brazil lacks equipment to scour the ocean floor a Brazilian navy spokeswoman said Wednesday. Brazil was leading the search for wreckage, while France took charge of the crash investigation.
The seas in the area are high, and that is slowing the arrival of our ships," she said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "We have four divers on the way, but the first of them will not get to the scene until midday Thursday."
The official said if the black boxes are at the bottom of the sea -- three miles (five kilometers) deep in some nearby areas -- there was nothing the Brazil navy could do as they do not have the special remotely controlled subs needed to withstand the pressure at the ocean's bottom.
If the black boxes have sunk, she said, "We don't have the equipment to look for them."
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
A post from Karl Denninger entitled Open Note to Tim Geithner follows and it's a killer: It was taken from the old dairy of Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau, Jr. under FDR. He wrote this in 1939 after eight years serving in the post-depression dark days many economists believe were prolonged and exacerbated by too much government involvment by the twelve-year (1934-1945), three-term FDR administration:
Treasury Secretary, Henry Morgenthau, angry at the Keynesian spenders, confided to his diary May 1939: "We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just one interest, and now if I am wrong somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosper. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. I say after eight years of this administration, we have just as much unemployment as when we started. And enormous debt to boot."
The voice of exhausted, frustrated experience which we, and team Obama, ignore at our lasting peril.
Monday, June 1, 2009
Treasury Secretary Geithner Talks Out of Both Sides of His (Feckless) Mouth on His Charm-the-Chinese Tour
GEITHNER---THE NEW US FULL-ECONOMIC MASSAGE THERAPIST---HAPPY DAYS ARE (ALMOST) HERE AGAIN!
Our Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner is in China having a gay old time toasting and being toasted. He wants the Chinese to like us so they will continue to enslave us by buying our massive and burgeoning piles of debt---aka our bonds.
Among many other things Geithner is supposed to be going around China talking up the U S economy and the U S dollar---so China won't lose any more confidence in our government than it already has.
Let's see what Geithner said today on the first day of his magical mystery tour in Beijing:
Facing skeptical students at China's prestigious Peking University, Geithner said that once the current recession and financial crisis are over, the administration will get America's fiscal deficit in order.
"As we recover from this unprecedented crisis, we will cut our fiscal deficit, we will eliminate the extraordinary government support that we have put in place to overcome the crisis," Geithner said in a speech to students at the university, which Geithner attended nearly three decades ago.
Needless to say laughter erupted among Chinese students in the audience who were listening to Geithner make this absurd speech with a straight face!
To review: Geithner is saying once this crisis is over the Obama administration will cut our deficit spending!! But wait a minute: Last week in Hollywood, our reckless spending president Obama said, "You ain't seen nothing yet!" The meaning is that Mr. Obama intends to keep spending towards his political agenda even if he brings down the country.
From what I see and hear, Obama means what he says, We ain't seen nothing yet! They have no intention of stopping their reckless spending binge.
So Geithner is in China saying that once the Obama administration has spent us into oblivion, they'll stop and make it all well again. (Bring out the violins!)
The Chinese clapped, smiled, bowed and scraped and then all got out the SAKE and toasted a smiling guy!
For the record, Team Obama has increased the federal deficit four, FOUR, times over what it was last year under Bush. Four times since last year! The Chinese are understandably concerned.
Even as Obama proudly announces there's no end to his lavish spending in sight. Then he has the gall to send his Treasury Secretary to China to give a gigantic full-body economic massage: Tell em not to believe what they see and hear, but believe what you tell them! And don't forget to smile!
What do you suppose would be an indication of Geithner's effectiveness today after speaking platitudes to the lChinese people they/we obviously take for such fools?
The short answer: first, the long term bond ETF (TLT) would shoot up today; and second, the long dollar ETF (UUP) would also shoot up also and certainly stabilize after unprecedented losses over the past few months.
The result: Both the UUP (long US dollar)---and the 20-year US bond ETF (TLT) continued to sink precipitously to the south.
So, Tim, so far, your Chinese SAKE friends aren't buying it. Maybe tomorrow they'll bite. Maybe they just want a game of pick-up basketball with all you tall guys. Maybe they just want to get out their Polaroid cameras and snap some pics for their photo albums. But right now, they're not buying your magical mystery fiscal charm tour.
Neither are we.