Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Isn't It Time For Herman Cain And Barney Frank...


AND SOON, VERY SOON,  Mr. Cain can go back to where he came from, back to his, er,  philanthropic work of  'helping' struggling, young (mainly white) women with their shaky finances on the casting couch.

All he wanted was a  cookie.

A Brief Word From Barney


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

One Photo Says It All: Just How Precarious Is Our Global Financial Debt/Credit Situation? How Far The Fall?


(Michael Kemeter balances at a dizzying altitude of more than 3,000 feet on a strip of material no more than one inch wide. The highline was set up between a fissure across a steep gully at the Yosemite National Park in California.)

Cramer Talks Global Credit Contagion, Sounds Fire Alarm On CNBC Monday

JIM CRAMER OF MAD MONEY ON CNBC wants to educate his viewers as the the monstrous and perilous economic situation we're all facing. He wants us to know that the credit crisis in Europe will indeed affect us here in the U.S. and that we need to take steps right now to minimize the damage to come.

Cramer further stresses that we shouldn't be lulled into a false sense of security because of good reports of Black Friday spending or a good day or two in the stock market. He reiterates that we are not that far away from a global financial crisis so huge that it will be hard to get our minds around.

Click to play the first video, then move the curser to minute 6 to hear this rant. In the first minutes of the second video, he continues to explain this situation for investors whom he advises to sell into this rally any companies that depend on credit to survive because they will be the hardest hit.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Fresh Outrage: The Big Banks Need to be Broken Up Now, Put Out of OUR Misery

JOSH BROWN, taxpayers should be outraged, and I do mean outraged, by fresh disclosures of secret dealings, suppression of information and massive corporate welfare using our taxpayer money on these six big predatory banks----JPMorgan, Bank of America, Citigroup Inc. (C), Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC), Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and Morgan Stanley (MS).

They need to be broken up or need to fail---yesterday if possible
If any of us have not taken the time to educate ourselves to the reprehensible behavior of the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department in coddling these corporate forever baby sharks---with no accountability or disclosure to us and our children on whose backs this depraved folly is now strapped to--- then we can and should get what we deserve.

We need to be outraged and stay outraged until this crazed and tragic chapter in our fiscal history ends. If we're not, we're all doomed.
Brown writes:
Fresh outrage as Bob Ivry, Bradley Keoun and Phil Kuntz (tough name) break an incredible story about the secrets of the 2008 bailouts. Banks fought to keep these details a secret, but Bloomberg Markets Magazine successfully sued for the truth.

Here goes:

The Federal Reserve and the big banks fought for more than two years to keep details of the largest bailout in U.S. history a secret. Now, the rest of the world can see what it was missing.

The Fed didn’t tell anyone which banks were in trouble so deep they required a combined $1.2 trillion on Dec. 5, 2008, their single neediest day. Bankers didn’t mention that they took tens of billions of dollars in emergency loans at the same time they were assuring investors their firms were healthy. And no one calculated until now that banks reaped an estimated $13 billion of income by taking advantage of the Fed’s below-market rates, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its January issue.

And you can also thank these "smartest guys in the room" for those parasitic zero percent interest rates that are doing such wonders for your savings and retirement prospects.
Read more if you can.

Saturday, November 26, 2011


The Hidden Life In Christ (Part 4)

AGAIN AND AGAIN, PASTOR MIKE ATKINS of River Crossing in Jackson Hole reiterates: Christ died for us so that He might live in us.

Newt: Victory or Death

FROM SEVERAL YEARS AGO, but still worth taking the time to watch and listen. This is part 5. Newt is a compelling speaker with a hefty command of the English language, American history and the United States Constitution.

The Simplest, Easiest Solution To the Debt Problem



The borrower says, "I can't pay you back" and then the borrower surrenders his or her claim on any assets that he or she still possesses.

The lender, meanwhile, sifts through those assets and recoups what he or she can. And in this normal, natural state of affairs, both parties get hurt by the experience, and they go home to nurse their wounds, having learned a harsh lesson that hopefully will help them avoid making similar mistakes in the future.

And that's as it should be.

Because they're both responsible for the mistake.

The borrower borrowed too much. And the lender loaned too much. And they both paid the price for their optimism and/or greed.
Now, note what does NOT happen in this normal, natural "debtor can't pay lender" state of affairs:

The world doesn't freeze up with paroxysms of angst, denial, finger-pointing, can-kicking, moral hazard, and endless bailouts--in which no one is ever forced to acknowledge his or her mistake and learn his or her lesson.

In the US housing market, as in the European sovereign debt market, borrowers borrowed too much and lenders loaned too much.

Both sides had good intentions, but the good intentions didn't work out. And now we're in the age-old situation in which borrowers can't pay. And, as always, both sides bear responsibility for this situation.

No matter how popular it is to bash Wall Street, no one forced American consumers and European countries to borrow money. And no matter how popular it is to rail about deadbeats and the loss of personal responsibility, no one forced Wall Street to make all those dumb-ass loans.

In a simple, fair, and just world, both sides would now pay the price.

And the world would move on, quickly, and put this whole mess behind it.

But instead, we just get denial, empty promises, can-kicking, finger-pointing, and endless bailouts.

The reason we're not getting the simple solution this time, of course, is that so many people borrowed so much and so many people loaned so much that, collectively, they have a lot of power to influence the solution.

And, of course, like anyone else who has made a colossal, painful mistake, they're slow to acknowledge that they made a mistake, and they're doing everything they can to never have to acknowledge that.

But that shouldn't change anything.

The simple, fair, and best solution to the global debt crisis is the same as it ever was:
Let the borrower and lender suffer the consequences for their choices.
Read more.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving Time

HAD HOPED TO GET BACK to the computer more this week, but alas too much is going on. Still want to write about my recent dinner  with an acquaintance I had hoped would become a friend but turned out to be a radical liberal. We sparred in a civilised way over dinner.  However as we left the restaurant, I shook my head in disbelief at how truly far apart culturally, politically we two really are. Now I doubt I will ever see this person again.  I prefer to stay open and never completely close someone out of my life, but I certainly won't pursue this in the future.  I will be back to write on some of our dinner conversation when I catch my breath.

Since I'm short on time, thought I'd leave with a couple of links I've found of interest over the past few days. Wishing you and your family a wonderful, thankful Thanksgiving. What a blessed time of the year. With all our problems and dilemmas, surely we in America have more than our share to be grateful for. Thanks be to God for the richness of His blessings.

Without further ado, I pass on a few noteworthy links:

****** Besides the individual mandate, what else is wrong with Obamacare? Jeffrey Anderson answers at PJ Media today.

****** My recent dinner with Vladmir Putin in Moscow at Heritage's blog The Foundry. In case you have any doubts as to whether Putin has already elected himself president of Russia for life, this should dispel them.

****** Is the megachurch bubble about to burst? Some say it is. Sure glad I go to a teeny church that has no huge building fund to support.

****** More charges for Sandusky which will probably send him to jail due to insufficient funds to post bail. The story just keeps getting more horrifying.

****** Another must read on Obamacare and the huge time----5.5 hours--- allotted by the Supreme Court for oral arguments. This is almost unheard of. What are the implications of this?  Especially noteworthy is the amount of time parcelled out on the issue of severability, or the issue of what happens if the High Court finds part of Obamacare unconstitutional.  Does that automatically invalidate the entire law?  Very interesting issues to contemplate.

****** The Awful Tyranny of Having to Be Nice. Good piece from the Anchoress.

Will be back with more when I can.  Meanwhile,  Happy Birthday, G-Boy!  Can't wait to see you soon!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Super Committee Deadlock A Victory For Fiscal Sanity Rather Than A Failure

It now appears the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (the “Super Committee”) will deadlock, resulting in automatic spending cuts of $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years. Some are decrying this as a failure; I’m celebrating it as a victory. Clearly, much more must be done to cut federal spending and avert a fiscal crisis. But real spending cuts were never on the table. What was on the table was a disastrous tax hike that would have undermined our economic recovery and given Washington politicians even more money to spend, undermining the goal of cutting spending.

Republican House Leadership reportedly offered as much as $640B in tax hikes in the negotiations, contrary to political posturing from Democrats that Republicans were anti-tax absolutists (which they should have been). Even Senator Pat Toomey and Representative Jeb Hensarling, the most conservative members of the panel, offered $300 billion in net tax hikes, offering to do much more than “pay for” an extension of the Bush tax cuts with an itemized deduction phase-out that would have, among other things, limited the deductibility of charitable contributions and home mortgage interest.The only thing that protected the American people from a large and extremely poorly-timed tax hike was Democrats’ unending hunger for more of our money. They rejected the big tax hikes the Republicans offered because they wanted even bigger tax hikes.
Democrats never intended to do anything about the spending problem. In fact, they insisted on tax hikes of more than the $1.2 trillion deficit reduction mandate so they could increase spending by funding the president’s latest stimulus proposal.
Considering what the offer was on the table, news out of the Super Committee that they won’t report a package is a huge success.

Although it is not nearly enough to solve the impending fiscal disaster, the sequester mechanism is a Washington spending cut, or more precisely a reduction in expected spending increases. It is not the doomsday scenario some on the left (and even some on the right) claim. As economist Dan Mitchell of the Cato Institute has explained, spending will still increase every year under the sequester (although more slowly), including increases in defense spending.

In the end, Democratic intransigence made clear that the only option to even modestly reduce the runaway growth of federal spending was to deadlock and trigger sequestration. Under the circumstances, we should celebrate the outcome. But not for very long, because there is much more work to do to cut federal spending and we need to keep the pressure on.
Amen and amen, brother Kerpen. There's little time for a victory lap, and still the breakdown of this so called Super Committee---not!---is cause for celebration.
Phil Kerpen is vice president for policy at Americans for Prosperity and author of "Democracy Denied: How Obama is Ignoring You and Bypassing Congress to Radically Transform America – and How to Stop Him," available at

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday, Being Born of the Spirit

From River Crossing.

PASTOR MIKE ATKINS OF RIVER CROSSING  TALKS ABOUT BEING BORN AGAIN OR  MADE ALIVE IN THE SPIRIT. Jesus teaches Nicodemus, a Pharisee and leader/master of religion in Israel, who has no idea what that means. Jesus references Ezekiel 36 as an Old Testament prophecy of spiritual rebirth and renewal.

We all are dead in spirit when we're born.Yes, we're alive in our emotions, in thoughts and passions and desires. But we remain spiritually dead and live by our own Self Inspired Narrative (SIN) that leaves God out.  Only when we're genuinely born of the spirit and God comes to dwell in us with His sactifying presence do we begin to be liberated from all our many idols and passions.

Atkins reiterates that we can never just live for God. Only by surrendering to God's indwelling us with His Holy Spirit living His life through us can we live a life worthy of His blessings and His calling.

In the end, we have to get off the thrones of our lives and surrender to God being enthroned in our hearts and minds.

Link to video @ River Crossing

Friday, November 18, 2011

Ms. Paltrow, Your Buddy Ms. McCartney Did You No Favors

GOSH I HOPE GWYNNETH GOT THIS DREADFUL DRESS as a free gift from her close friend designer Stella McCartney because I can't imagine paying good money for this travesty. Better yet, perhaps Stella paid her to wear it as a promotion.  No matter,  it may be the least attractive dress I've seen on anyone all year. If this is cutting edge, then take me back to the Renaissance. It's so wrong for so many reasons, I might be here all night if I get started. I'm all for asymmetry but there are limits to where it should go. Clearly she's more than reached it with this whacko, strange and truly unbecoming cut.  Both women can do much better than this.

Read more on this dreadful fashion risk.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

At OWS, Real Heroes Emerge


IT TAKES REAL GUTS for these guys to stand outside in the chaos with these signs. Bravo for them! Also, I understand the turnout today for the anarchists to close down the Wall Street financial district is much lower than expected. The MSM may not want to publisize the low numbers, but they're not very impressive.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Michelle, Back Into Her Fashion Groove

AFTER DISSING THE FIRST LADY'S  brocade curtain outfit last week, I want to give credit where credit's due.  Very much like both dresses posted above and think Mrs. Obama is in good fashion territory here. On the left is Vera Wang with a signature hot, luscious accent color. On the right,  the lively print dress is a perfect color for Michelle that not many of us can carry off.

She wears both well and looks terrific. Source.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thuggery and Thievery: Tis The Season To....



Looking back,  it was probably overdue. I learned a good, rock hard lesson. Thuggery.

My training hikes in the park several times a week  always involve: parking car near a safe trail access, stowing purse under a blanket on the floor of the back seat, putting  car keys, cell phone and pepper spray in a small pack to take with me, locking  car, and hitting the trail.  I did it like clock work last Saturday  when I met a friend  to hike at 11 AM----though we met much later than normal----which may be pivotal since we usually go between 7-8 AM, long before most burglars have  thought of getting up to start their day of thievery.

We walked  two hours then returned to the parking area. She got into her car and drove off, while I dilly dallied around before getting into mine.  When I  finally unlocked my car and slipped my key into the ignition I noticed little shards of tinted glass all over the front dashboard and looked up to see if the rear view mirror had been damaged or fallen from its perch above me

Then it dawned:  Turn. Look back. Shatterered glass was everywhere.  Everywhere. Back window destroyed. Purse stolen along with drivers license, check card, national park pass, Costco card, and $45. Big rock on back seat.

I called 911. Waited an hour for a police officer. Called a friend who found my bank's customer service number to cancel my debit/credit card even before police arrived. Warned other  hikers at the parking area.


A kind, burly, good humored black park police officer finally showed up. He told me the following most likely scenario:

1) Thief was likely a  man between 18-30 seeking extra money for recreational booze or drugs for the weekend. Sometimes a gang of thieves come in big groups from other cities and divvy up and work the territory for a week or two before moving on to other cities.

2) Thief/vandal staked out parking lot either sitting or lurking in tinted-glass car/SUV----or hiding in the woods on a nearby hill-- watching -the comings and goings of hikers who were mostly women.

3) He saw me drive up, stow my purse on the back floor, then leave the area with a friend. Thieves don't break into cars unless they know there's bounty to be had. They usually go for a woman's car in parking lots of parks,  rarely breaking in unless they know the sex of the 'victim.'  We all need to look around when we arrive somewhere to see if there's anything jumps out as suspicious.

4) Once the thief knew my purse was stowed inside, it was pointless for me to lock my car doors, since all it took was a big rock to crash the window and snatch it out.


1) Leave your driver's license and credit cards at home unless you're going shopping, then pack it and take it all with you when you leave the car. If it makes you feel better, bring a copy of your license and several dollars in your pack.

2) Take out any and all valuables from the car, especially purses, expensive camera equipment, iPhones etc. Don't store them there on trips unless absolutely necessary.

3) Organize yourself and belongings while you're at home, rather than being seen regrouping by thieves in parking areas.

4) Leave your car unlocked and a window partially down to potentially avoid a broken window and shattered glass everywhere.

5) Carry a personal defense device with you at all times. I always carry pepper spray on the trail. However, the police officer said I should keep it---or a hand gun (!)---handy at all times, wherever I am.

On Monday, I got my license, bank card and damaged windows replaced. It was a time-consuming pain but had to be done. On Tuesday, I went back to the park a bit wiser for the lessons learned.

Now I may be a tad bit more savvy and ready for the long holiday season ahead. Hope you are too.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday, Paul's Letter to the Philippians

REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS. I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable---if anything is excellent or praiseworthy---think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me---put into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

....I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.  I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. (NIV)

---Philippians 4:4-9, 11b-12

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Saturday, When Clothes Wear Us

FLOTUS MICHELLE OBAMA IS ONE BIG AMAZONIAN-TYPE WOMAN and can get by with a lot more large fashion risque-ness than someone the size of my 4-6 frame.  However, even she can't carry  this fashion train wreck off at her cameo Veterans Day appearance yesterday.    Far too much busyness, fabric-ness, printiness  going in for my taste.  In fact it almost gives me a migraine just looking at it.

One can only wonder what she will follow this with in her nine-day trip to Hawaii this week.  No doubt there will be many custom changes coming soon.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Epic Evidence As To Why Men Often Need Fashion Supervision


Update: Yes, it's occurred to me, this sweater may indeed be a gift from one of ArSch's many girl friends.

Friday: Roger Simon Visits Victor Hanson, Talks About Taking Our Castor Oil

...AS WELL AS THE STATE OF CONSERVATISM, the 2012 election and why candidates flip-flop. It's a terrific intereview, so watch the whole thing. Hanson begins by saying,

Romney is our collective castor oil and we know we have to take our medicine to beat Obama but we don't really want to.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Is Return to The Gold Standard Feasible?

JEFFREY BELL EXPLAINS THE RETURN TO THE GOLD BACKED DOLLAR, how it might be accomplished and how long it would take.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Wednesday Career Crashes


IT'S BEEN A VERY LONG DAY for ending careers. Both Graham Spainer, president of Penn State, and Joe Paterno famed PS football coach have been fired effective immediately due to fallout from the horrendous child sex abuse scandal there. Then Texas governor Rick Perry stumbled badly in tonight's presidential debate, and most likely will never recover from his frozen gaffe. In all three cases, it may have been a while in coming, but in the end, it was over very quickly.

Sobering how quickly life and aspirations can turn on a dime. Meanwhile, mayhem and riots have broken out at Penn State tonight, while this one is on the way out.

Eddie Murphy, Brett Ratner In The Center of Hollywood P C Flap

IT'S ALWAYS FUN WHEN THE RICH, POWERFUL AND FAMOUS lapse into gross political incorrectness and cause an earthquake of instant outrage.  Those who don't have a life go bonkers. You'd think they'd been shot in the head with a .45 Magnum at the Oscars. An off-the-cuff remark in Hollywood involving the word 'fag' caused a tsunami of nuclear proportions, and the dominoes have fallen like flies. Say what funny fellas?  Don't you know,  no one  knows how to take a joke there anymore!

Big Hollywood explains:
Eddie Murphy is a complicated man and it’s impossible to know his precise motivations for jettisoning his Oscar hosting gig just a day after the Hollywood P.C. Thought Police took out his friend and creative partner Brett Ratner, but it certainly looks like a rebuke of the repressive “tolerance” mandate that has eroded Hollywood and the art it attempts to create.
This isn't really much of a story, but frankly after the last two weeks of focusing on Herman Cain's peccadilloes, it's fresher and a lot more fun to write about. Thanks for keeping it slightly interesting in Hollywood fellas.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Karen Kraushaar: Portrait of Another of Cain's Accusers

Yesterday, Cain’s campaign wouldn’t comment on the specifics of any of the allegations, but has a press conference scheduled for today.

But Kraushaar family members who spoke to The Daily said the only lies were coming from Cain.

“His denial of the whole thing, and his making light of it, seems to me to be more damaging to his character than the initial allegations,” said Karen Kraushaar’s sister-in-law, who asked not to be named. “If he would have just come out and said, ‘This is what happened,’ it would have been so much better for everybody.”

Since Politico broke the story that two women had received cash settlements after filing sexual harassment claims against Cain, various news outlets have declined to identify the women, citing privacy issues. A third woman’s case was disclosed last week, but The Associated Press did not name her.

Now wants Cain's other accusers to band together.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Herman Cain And The Ladies



AFTER WATCHING SHARON BIELEK'S press conference today with lawyer Gloria Allred I have to say I wouldn't exactly call her accusations of Herman Cain's behavior sexual harassment. It didn't happen in the workplace and it wasn't recurrent.

At the most, she's gone public accusing him of making a rather gross, disgusting pass at her, or if you will, an inappropriate sexual advance at a time and place she should never have been with him in the first place. Certainly not if she was serious about talking to him about landing a new job. Breakfast or lunch, sure.

Ms. Bielek was not a victim no matter how much she insists. I don't care if she was wearing a turtleneck up to her lower lip, she still made herself a sitting duck that night. It was unpleasant, but if she's honest, she has to take responsibility for choosing to meet him at a bar, go to dinner, then get into his car afterwards. How much more can a tarty woman set herself up while seeking a favor?

To his credit, when she cried foul, he backed off and took her back to her hotel.

So I'm not inclined to be highly sympathetic to any portrayal of herself as a victim of Cain's sexual advance which probably happened. Let's face it, men will be men, and powerful men away from hearth-and-home much of the time will be boorish cads if they can get by with it, especially after a few drinks. A woman conveniently forgets this at her great peril.

Having said that, I find Herman Cain less savory by the minute as a man, a husband, and a presidential candidate. My female radar flashes red alert. I think he fancies himself a ladies man and has probably made more than his share of female employees and colleagues squirm in discomfort over the years. It sounds like some of them ran for cover and got paid off for going away and keeping quiet. Yes, yes, I know it could have been an Anita Hill moment for them. But three or four women have come forward and I tend to think where there's that much smoke there's got to be some fire.

Who knows what's next. And who cares who put who up to expose this whole thing to the American people. It's all part of the messy vetting process.
Frankly I don't even care what happens next one way or the other.

For now, I file this Cain affair under unsubstantiated innuendo and mark it read and unimpressed. Cain's vehement denials---if in fact it really did happen---make him a liar. If so, it's a character issue for me and a much more serious offense than groping a woman in his car after dinner and a few drinks.

We shall see.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Evening Reflection

I THANK YOUR LADYSHIP for the information concerning the Methodist preachers, but the doctrines are most repulsive and strongly tinctured with impertinence and disrespect toward their superiors, in perpetually endeavoring to level all ranks and do away with all distinctions. It is monstrous to be told you have a heart as sinful as the common wretchesthat crawl on the earth. This is highly offensive and insulting; and I cannot but wonder that Your Ladyship should relish any sentiment so much at variance with high rank and good breeding.

—-- From The Duchess of Buckingham to the Countess of Huntingdon, after being invited to come and hear the ‘Methodist’ evangelist George Whitefield, 1741
H/T Redeemer Presbyterian, Manhattan

Sunday, Part 3 Behold The Man

Behold the Man (Part 3) from River Crossing

Friday, November 4, 2011

John Tamny: LSU vs. Alabama Shows We Don't Need College Playoffs


ALABAMA is a perfect example of why NFL-style playoffs would be a bad idea for college football. Can anything in sports be more fun and interesting than really great college football?
John Tamny answers this ponderous question in the negative:
Tomorrow night #1 ranked Louisiana State University (LSU) will take on 2nd ranked Alabama. As it’s widely assumed that these are by far the two best college football teams in the country, this match up is the latest to have a variation of “Game of the Century” attached to it
Every few years these games present themselves, some are more exciting than others, but perhaps not commented on enough is how unique they are to college football. Of course, they are unique because quite unlike other college and professional sports, there’s happily no end-of-season playoff that would largely devalue this exciting collision of what for now are the two highest ranked teams.
Despite the excitement that this Saturday holds, much like Groundhog Day college football fans will suffer yet again this year myriad breathy articles from emotional sportswriters about how a playoff must be implemented. To the nearsighted a playoff would be more equitable such that more teams would have a chance to hoist the trophy (those who follow modern economic policy perhaps detect a pattern here…), and better yet they allege, a true champion would be discovered on the field.
Ignored by the hysterics is the simple truth that playoffs don’t always achieve what is presumed. Indeed, does anyone think the 2008 New York Giant Super Bowl Champion team was better than the New England Patriots that they beat?
When I comes to most sports, I don't have a strong opinion one way or the other and listen more than I speak. But Tamny makes good sense to me. I'll be watching the game Saturday night with one of the all time big fans of college football.  Read the rest of Tamny's piece.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

7 Most Common Financial Mistakes

LOVE ARTICLES LIKE THIS! It's a great way to check our financial intelligence and do a tune-up.  This obscure little piece at Investopedia caught my eye. I remember learning most of these lessons from my parents.  They used to say it was always the little, recurring things in life that mattered most,  especially, but not limited to keeping up with money. They were right of course.Whether it's frivolous spending and impulse buying or recurring monthly payments, there are a lot of ways to cut back and save money.  Learning how to tighten our belts has never been more important. 

End of the Line For Herman Cain




If the above piece at PJ Media is true, Herman Cain's presidential run is completely finished not because it's becoming evident he has a history of being on the make with women he takes a fancy to, but because he hasn't been honest and forthcoming with the American people. By dodging, obfuscating, blaming and playing the race and victim cards, Cain has lost our respect and trust.  We are in no mood as voters with all the problems we're facing to have another Bill Clinton episode in the White House circa 2012.


DEAN STEPHENS AT AMERICAN THINKER says what none of us wants to hear but needs to delve into about Herman Cain: As with many candidates, there's a mythology, as there was with Colin Powell, we should examine to see if it bears up under deeper scrutiny. To wit:
Herman Cain supporters have accepted his narrative that he is an American success story. The question is, just how much of that "success" did he earn on his own? And is it really the Horatio Alger story we are led to believe?
Stephens believes that while Cain has achieved a measure of success which is fine as far as it goes,  it's vastly over-rated. He also thinks the candidate long ago became a professional politician rather than the full-time businessman he likes to portray himself as being:
Herman Cain did not build Godfather's Pizza. He was made manager of an existing organization within a large corporation and given staff and a title. The parent company soon spun it off, as big firms often do with subsidiaries that offer modest upside scale potential. Cain did not grow the business while he ran it as a subsidiary or after it was spun off. He made it more profitable by closing restaurants and firing several thousand employees. Cain then used that profitability success as a stepping stone to run for public office -- and quit. That act itself was typical of an employee, not an entrepreneur. In fact, many insiders do not consider Cain key to the turnaround. They tout Ronald Gartlin, who helped build the Godfather's chain before Pillsbury bought it, as key to Cain's efforts to return it to profitability. Gartlin replaced Cain on his departure and continues to run the business today. For the last 20 years Herman Cain has been active in politics. Although he has never won public office, he and his supporters cannot realistically claim he is not a professional politician. He is! Cain was appointed to the Federal Reserve board despite absolutely no credentials in monetary, fiscal, or economic policy that would justify the appointment. His status as a black businessman was likely his most important qualification. I cannot find any transcripts or video interviews of Cain discussing economic issues with any depth or breadth of insight. He talks in generalities. Details that require true knowledge are avoided. Cain is a sound-bite candidate in a sound-bite era. Even so, why is this Federal Reserve experience considered a good thing? Many of our problems in economic mismanagement are directly attributable to board members like Cain rubber-stamping disastrous Federal Reserve policies
Stephens continues by bringing up the sexual harassment charges leveled against Cain which he does not believe are true. I disagree and think there's probably a long-standing pattern of Cain being on the make which has had the effect of making female associates he comes in contact with uncomfortable if not downright fearful. I could be wrong, but it certainly now seems so. Cain clearly needs to address this issue and not just deflect it by blaming Perry or anyone else. It's bad politics at its worst.

The main concern Stephens has is Cain's inexperience with foreign policy which he thinks makes the candidate unfit to lead the country in these perilous times. The piece ends with a clear call for Cain to stop stonewalling and answer many questions that we need answered to fill in the blanks of our collective projections. I agree.  We can't and shouldn't vote for the projection of any candidate.

I am just as guilty of getting carried away with superficial and often hyped mythology on the candidates as anyone. For that, I have read this piece with relish and hope to be better for it.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

R.I.P. Herman Cain Cracks Up, His Candidacy Is Toast, It's So Over

WEDNESDAY MAY HAVE SEEN THE FINAL NAILS DRIVEN INTO THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN OF HERMAN CAIN.I could be wrong, but it looks like only a matter of time before this campaign breathes its last. Things got rolling at the Ritz Carlton in Tysons Corner this morning where Cain said various factions were out to destroy him and his campaign. Then at his next stop at the Hilton Hotel in Alexandria, VA the wheels came completely off, as tempers flew, effectively sending Cain's campaign to the graveyard. It's all over but the shouting. Dana Milbank at the WaPo reports:
In Wednesday morning, he raised the paranoia dial another notch. “There are factions trying to destroy me personally, and this campaign,” he announced, revealing this conspiracy to a group of technology executives at the Ritz-Carlton in Tyson’s Corner. At his next stop, a Hilton hotel in Alexandria, the amiable candidate finally blew his stack – and the scene quickly escalated into violence. It began when a reporter asked Cain if he would release his accusers from their confidentiality agreements. “I’m not going to talk about it,” Cain snapped, “so don’t even bother asking me all of these other questions that y’all are curious about. Okay? Don’t even bother.” “It’s a good question,” the reporter pointed out. “Are you concerned?” asked another. Evidently, Cain was. “What did I say?” he hissed at the reporters, then attempted to break through the pack, shouting: “Excuse me. Excuse me! EXCUSE ME!” At that, his bodyguards began throwing elbows and shoving the reporters and photographers. “Stand back! . . . Do not push me! . . . Pushing is against the law!. . . Watch out!. . . Get a grip on yourself!” In the melee, a young boy and his father were shoved up against a wall.
The thing that bothers me most about this whole affair is Cain losing his cool today. His anger belies a defensiveness that does not bode well for him to become president. When he lost it, it was ugly. If all that's not enough, Steve Deace, Christian talk show host in Des Moines, Iowa today said Cain made awkward and inappropriate remarks to a female staffer at the station recently .Deace is quoted as saying
"Like awkward/inappropriate things he’s said to two females on my staff, that the fact the guy’s wife is never around…that’s almost always a warning flag to me,” Deace wrote. “But I chose to leave that stuff out [of the opinion piece] and make it about his record and not the personal stuff." Pressed about what exactly Cain said to the employees of his show, Deace responded by describing how he himself treats his staff. “Many a man has been done in by the inability to control his urges,” Deace wrote. “I am no different and just as vulnerable as any other man, which is why I put safeguards around me and hold myself accountable to my wife and other men in my life. Especially since I have very talented employees that happen to be women. I go out of my way to treat them like my sisters. For example, I wouldn’t tell them or any other woman I am not married to nor related to how pretty she is.”
Deace is clearly  conservative,  Christian with higher standards than most people in government. Still it appears Cain's suggestive behavior may be a long-standing pattern which cannot be overcome in time to save his candidacy. The American people are in no mood, no mood---with its extreme concerns for the economy and jobs---to be sidetracked by sexual scandals and innuendos in the White House over the next four years. I defended Cain over the past few days, but now I sadly now do an about face for no other reason than his massive and frightening show of temper at the Hilton today.

Gloria Cain Steps Up, Stands By Her Man

ONCE WE HAD PROBLEMS AND SOLVED THEM, TODAY WE HAVE ISSUES WE TALK ENDLESSLY ABOUTSHE'S KNOWN TO PREFER STAYING OUT OF THE SPOTLIGHT and in the shadows behind husband of 43 of years, Herman Cain. Still there are times for a wife to come forward and be in the spotlight. Now--with sexual allegations swirling around her husband--- it seems to be as good a time as any to speak up. Friday night she plans to open up with Greta Van Susteran at Fox News for her first big national interview. It can only do Cain good even as his accuser clamors to tell her side of the story by going public and grabbing the spotlight (she probably already has a book deal in the works!) for her 5 minutes of Anita Hill-like fame:

After a lifetime spent in her now-famous husband’s shadow, Gloria Cain will make her public debut on Friday night, when she sits down for her first national interview with Greta Van Susteren of Fox News. The interview will come under less than ideal circumstances: Van Susteren will have to ask Mrs. Cain about the sexual harassment allegations against her husband, and any drip of scandal or innuendo that emerges between now and then.

Meanwhile, Iowa yawns. Even as Carl Rove who supports Mitt Romney for president wants his accuser to speak. That's fine. But after all is said and done, very few minds will be changed: those who stand by Cain will still stand by him. Those who want to see him fail, will still be there cheering his accuser on in a he said/she said conversation that will never ever be proven except through known character over time.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Stock Market Plunge On G-Pap's Big Fat Greek Referendum


HOW DO YOU SAY 'GET REAL' IN GREEK? G-Pap's announcement is a big fat joke that his government will hold a referendum vote for it's citizens to decide whether they will willingly accept the EU's bailout money with conditions of austerity attached to them. How do you say does anyone not know the outcome of this childish, entitled, debt-ridden country's vote that will demand that life goes on as it has, business as usual?

Truth is, Greece have no choice but to tighten its belt no matter what the outcome of the vote. It can pretend a little longer. But in the beginning, middle and end the country is massively bankrupt and not to admit it and take the austerity measures only digs it further in the grave.

Markets are plunging all over the world. Trading was halted on the Russian markets. Will ours be next? We can only hope the contagion of fear and volatility will not spread and accelerate to epic, out-of-control proportions.

We're living in very treacherous times with much bigger concerns than whether Herman Cain once told some employee at the NRA that she's about the same height as his wife.

Cain Should Have Called A Spade A Spade From the Start

PAUL GIGOT @ WSJ WEIGHS INAFTER REVIEWING THE LATEST NEWS today on Cain's defense of the 'baseless' allegations of sexual misconduct years ago, I believe more than ever this is indeed a case of a trumped up non-event used by liberal news outlets to take him out of presidential contention as he soars in the polls. How successful his detractors will be in accomplishing this remains to be seen. I certainly would and will still vote for him at this point.

Having said that, I do not think Cain and his handlers have handled this situation as well as I would have hoped. Bryan Preston writes about it this morning at PJMedia. Though the allegations are extremely flimsy and probably baseless, as Cain contends, the changing explanation as the day went on Monday shows a campaign that's inexperienced at facing the kind of heavy hitting smears and scrutiny the liberal media can dish out in gargantuan quantities. He and his campaign knew ten days ago the story would break at Politico and should have formulated a much better plan than ducking and hoping it would go quietly into the night.He should have gotten his explanation right the first time then stuck to it.

Cain's campaign looks amateurish. Do they think a dog willingly drops a bone before every bit of blood and marrow are sucked out? Does a tick stop it's blood sucking before it's pulled of the it's unwilling host. Of course not. So Cain's biggest mistake is not necessarily happened but the bumbling and slightly apprehensive way he's handled it so far.

In other words, he should have called a spade a spade from the start. This mishap doesn't have to be fatal. It remains to be seen.