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  • Linn Energy: Many Ponzi-Like MLP Blow-Ups To Follow [View article]
    Well done Casey-

    This author seems to capitalize on shock comments-
    Correction: Invalid shock comments.
    Jul 5, 2013. 10:41 AM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #277, January 7, 2015 [View instapost]
    With my New Year's lance in hand and balanced just so, I charge forward to tilt at windmills where ever they can be found. Whether in the boardrooms of corporate megabucks, the streets called Wall and Broad or in the halls of laws and legislators- I should have little difficulty finding targets.

    My trust in my noble colleagues on the QuickChat shall be my armor and shield.

    Thanks, Trip and to all of you!

    Jan 7, 2015. 11:40 PM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Dollar's Purchasing Power Annihilated - The Chart They Don't Want You to See [View article]
    The US economy went the way of our dollars going to the oil sheiks who, as the trade-off purchased goodies from select American businesses. In 1971 we only imported about 20% of our energy needs- Today about 60%. We were an oil based economy in 1971 and a debtor nation today.

    Our leadership saw the handwriting on the wall but didn't have the guts to bite the bullet (or maybe the hand that fed them) and develop a viable energy policy 5, 10 or 25 years ago.

    The chart says it correctly. It could be an overlay (inversely) of the dollars out the door in trade deficits.

    The American public takes the hit once again. People on fixed incomes will really get hammered. Social Security payments won't be going up in January; the assets, savings and home values are stagnant at best; everyone hunkering down to see if they can meet bills with what's left of their investments.

    Too bad we can't just bask in the past and use our accomplishments to beef up the economy.
    May 9, 2009. 10:52 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Swine Flu, MERS, Ebola And Medical News Concentrator August 16, 2014 To September 14, 2014 [View instapost]
    Here's to us there's no one finer-

    And here's to Rattie- For all he does- For all he puts up with- For making it all better

    Rattie- The finest one of us all!

    Aug 16, 2014. 03:31 PM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stability Of The European Union (23) January 1, 2014 To June 1, 2014 [View instapost]
    Wonder who is controlling the country?
    Wonder no more-

    This quote from a guy back in 1802 says it all-

    'I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property until their children wake homeless on the continent their fathers conquered'

    - Thomas Jefferson 1802
    Apr 17, 2014. 09:43 AM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Earnings Season Party Ends [View article]
    I believe that the tea leaves could be read without a lot of difficulty. The one shot tax rebate last year caused a spike in buying (and a little credit card debt reduction) but it only lasted a month or two. The "clunker" program gets a few new cars off the lot but does nothing for the systemic problem- Too much leverage- Not enough capital- The consumer everyone is waiting for to bring home the bacon is the wisest of all- Or maybe most fearful. Hunkering down isn't a bad idea right now.

    Let the beached whale die its death and lets get on with whatever is reality. The asset base compared to what finance is available out there will be impossible to reconcile. Assets that aren't necessary any more will go unpurchased or sold at distress prices. Banks are, and should be afraid to lend money for home mortgages knowing in their heart of hearts that home values are already underwater before they take on a new mortgage. The second home, the Beemer as the 3rd car, the Med cruise are all on the block- The whole world economy save a few hardliners became a humongous Ponzi scheme that won't get fixed overnight. Sorry, kids- No instant gratification this time. School of hard knocks here we come.
    Aug 14, 2009. 05:27 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #277, January 7, 2015 [View instapost]
    OK, Boys and Girls-

    Bullard on the FOMC:

    This excerpt is from comments and analysis made by Bullard of the St. Louis fed. To me it is classic double-speak ie. <If it is then it is and if it is not it probably isn't...unless it somehow is.> (sarc- mine)

    Here's the real deal-

    "“The Committee received better-than-expected news on the real economy over the last two years, and yet adjusted policy in the direction of maintaining low interest rates for a longer time,” he said. In looking at possible explanations for why the FOMC did not adjust in the normal way to this better-than-expected news, Bullard cited the surprisingly low inflation readings.

    “The improvement in the real economy has not been accompanied with upward movements in inflation so far,” he said. However, Bullard added, “The level of inflation is not so low that it can alone justify a policy rate of zero.”

    Still, he cautioned that low inflation readings and declining inflation expectations may indicate a loss of credibility for the FOMC’s inflation target. “An important tenet of modern central banking is that a central bank must protect its credibility with respect to its inflation goal,” Bullard said.

    Clear, right? Right............

    Here's the link:

    Why should I be the only one scratching head? Join me.


    Jan 17, 2015. 01:39 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Swine Flu, MERS, Ebola And Medical News Concentrator September 14, 2014 To October 18, 2014. [View instapost]

    Re: Hospital charges-

    A few months ago my wife had an 'event', BP extremely high, moderate chest pressure and rapid pulse. As a volunteer EMT now in recovery, I called another active EMT to come by- She did and came up with the same results that I did. We agreed that she should go in- called 911 and got my old crew to the house with a rig. Got to the ER at 11:00. ER staff checked her out with BP dropping back to normal within two hours- no other symptoms of note. ER doc recommended an overnight stay- We agreed.

    Picked her up next morning at 11:30. No further symptoms.

    Got the billing statement two days later- My charge was $300. The total bill was for $10,866.50.

    Imagine if she needed treatment!

    Oct 8, 2014. 10:43 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #271, May 1, 2014 [View instapost]
    "What to do?"

    When I was a quite young trader I called my Dean Witter broker and asked if he thought it was the right time to sell Syntex the then pioneer birth control drug distributor. He responded by saying-

    'You have been in and out of this stock five times in as many months. You buy low and sell high then short it and buy it in at a nice profit. You do it all over again and again. You have yet to take a loss, and you are asking me if the time is right to sell?

    I follow a hundred stocks and give them as much time as I can. You follow ten or maybe even twenty and I know you delve into every one to find the key to their profits. You are much more an expert while I am the generalist. When you want to short I ask all sorts of questions- Not so much as to hear your thesis but to learn what you know. You are the expert here. Now do we just sell or do we sell and go short?"

    The moral of the story is to DYOD and believe in it. It is much more valuable than that of the "experts."

    Cramer has a reputation and a vast following. THAT is the reason his stuff often climbs- the "Cramer Effect". It often doesn't last very long before reality sets in. His recommendations are right initially about 52% of the time. The best of the letters is right about 60% and that is this quarter. Next quarter they will be at 40%.

    I ended up working with that broker at Dean Witter and did OK for a couple of years then got married.....

    May 29, 2014. 03:20 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #269, March 5, 2014 [View instapost]

    Re: Trying to get answers from medical practitioners-

    I had 38 years in the "Pit" that area between the patient, the medical practitioner, the insurance company and my employer- the trust funds I ran.

    I had a case where one of my insureds wanted to drive to Canada for a hernia procedure since it was outpatient rather than a five to 7 day stay in NY. The insurance company balked saying they couldn't pay outside the country for a non-par facility. I drove up to Toronto and signed up the doc and hospital to our preferred provider group.

    My patient got his outpatient surgery- double abdominal hernia repair using the 'mesh' method and drove himself home the next day. Total cost $1100.
    Stateside would have cost $9,000 plus.

    The ins co refused to pay. I filed a lawsuit and called their bluff- They paid in full. They claimed I coerced them into paying.

    They were quite willing to shell out the $9000 stateside rather than approve an $1100 payment for foreign providers. They would, of course just passed the cost on to my trust fund at the next negotiation with them.

    I believe this just might have been a variation on Trip's 'crony capitalism' theme.

    Here's hoping the procedure and all has a satisfactory conclusion for you, OG.

    Mar 19, 2014. 09:57 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QC#260 [View instapost]

    No artwork? What kind of QC is this?
    Aug 5, 2013. 10:54 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Goldman closes its gold short, the metal's move back above $1,400 triggering a stop. Still bearish though: "Our bias is to expect further declines in gold prices on the combination of continued ETF outflows ... as well as our economists' forecasts for a re-acceleration in U.S. growth later this year." GLD -0.3% premarket. [View news story]
    Talk about hedging your manipulation!
    Apr 23, 2013. 08:21 AM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stability Of The European Union (17) January 1, 2013 To March 26, 2013 [View instapost]

    Seems like the little people are and always will be serfs to the landlords.

    Fat Cat bankers get bailed out because ...they're too big to fail- oh yeah, don't forget to include our bonuses.

    Russians calling the shots in Cypress to protect and preserve the mob's money.

    The status quo doesn't change much, nor for long, it just keeps going around the turntable.

    Governments promise anything and everything and say gee whiz, Don't blame us, because it's not our fault the bills can't be paid- We just did what the people wanted. Don't forget to vote for me in November.

    There is an old saying about disruptions, dissidence and civil unrest.

    There has never been a revolution on a full stomach.

    I think the people are getting hungrier.

    Mar 25, 2013. 09:29 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #278, February 5, 2015 [View instapost]
    Excerpts are from an interesting article on corporate assets held offshore to avoid taxes and the issues with a strong dollar

    >>>>> much as $2 trillion of equivalent cash is outside the US and unrepatriated. The largest non-US dollar holdings are in euros, Swiss francs, and other European currencies, including the currencies of those countries that are linked to the euro under the exchange rate mechanism (ERM) or that are geographically next to the Eurozone, like Sweden and Denmark.

    ...corporate treasurers worldwide are reallocating as rapidly as possible in order to limit the losses they will have to report on March 31? They have been doing so for several months, which is why the dollar is so strong and the euro is so weak.
    In 1Q 2015 and 2Q 2015, earnings reductions are likely to show up in S&P 500 multinational companies. Those companies that have substantial activities abroad have to redo their currency relationships and report the changes in their earnings denominated in US dollars. We will see how much each company reports when those reports are made public. The first quarter of 2015 is a key one."

    Link here:

    Mar 15, 2015. 12:21 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • QuickChat #277, January 7, 2015 [View instapost]

    One of the charts I like to review periodically is the Baltic Dry Index (BDI) that shows how busy the world economy is. The index is now lower than any other time since I have documented records for at around 570. To put that in perspective the index was at the previously lowest level of 663 at the end of 2008. Global trading demand is obviously in the pits. With many global stock markets hitting new highs I see an anomaly here


    Feb 5, 2015. 10:20 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment