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mikebrah

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  • Frustrated by criticism over his healthcare initiative, President Obama is considering proposing his own legislation. The Obama bill would include a trigger for the much-debated public option, having it kick in after 3-5 years if private insurers weren't living up to their obligations.  [View news story]
    " I hope Obama takes the lead on this, and succeeds. It's shameful how we treat poor people in this country in terms of medical needs. Health-care is a national right if we decide that it should be. It's no different in this way than 'freedom of speech'."

    This is an appalling (and completely unsubstantiated) statement. There is nothing about health care in the Constitution, or even any statement that could be abstracted to make such a bogus claim.

    The idea that individuals who spend 10+ years studying and training, and incur up to $500k in debt should then have their services extorted by anyone with a boo-boo or a tummy ache is as UNamerican as it gets.

    Historically, doctors have always been amongst the highest earners of both income and prestige. Our modern health care is turning them into wards of the State and there is a reason why fewer and fewer ambitious, industrious individuals are entering the medical field. Hmmm...10 years and $500k so that one day I can be the State's bitch? Or 2 years getting an MBA and make 6-8 figures as a Stock Jockey? Tough call.

    All those would-be doctors are now misguided souls in the banking, law, or accounting sectors. Both the individual and the society gets what it pays for.
    Sep 6 12:09 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Doesn't the Media Take a Truly Independent, Unbiased Look at the Big Banks in the U.S.? [View article]
    JPM is already back to its 2006 price level. That is crazy.
    Sep 5 01:04 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Money on The Sidelines: 1930 vs 2009 (ZH) [View instapost]
    Did Tyler get banned from SA or something? I haven't seen anything by him on this site for awhile. I enjoyed being able to get most of his stuff via SA as it was once less webpage to visit.

    MM
    Sep 2 07:43 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Back to School? Where? [View article]
    Can someone give me a link to anything about Buffet selling his WFC? I haven't been able to find anything, is this legit?

    TIA!
    MM
    Sep 2 02:30 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Due for a Correction? Market Is Already Priced for Grim Future [View article]
    Touche, looks like I was a little late!

    MM


    On Aug 31 10:37 PM User 400260 wrote:

    >
    Sep 1 12:25 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Due for a Correction? Market Is Already Priced for Grim Future [View article]



    On Aug 31 09:23 PM E Nuff Sed wrote:


    > I like your thoughts as a economist but your politics need some work.
    > It is not consistent. There are many things the government does
    > better than the private sector - healthcare, defense, primary education,
    > public infrastructure, law and order being the primary examples.


    I find this statement to lack credibility considering no living American has ever experienced a time when any of the mentioned items were ever privatized.

    I find our public education to be truly atrocious. International rankings confirm this. DC is one of (if not THE) lowest rated school systems in America and yet has one of (if not THE) highest per capita costs of students in America.

    Have you ever lived in Chicago? Despite high taxes and ridiculous gas taxes, virtually every highway is a toll-road. And to boot, they are all in terrible condition.

    Like I said, no living American has ever actually lived in a world where the items you mention were privatized or open to competition. Please don't be so blatantly close-minded. This country was made great by open-mindedness and competition--not a nanny State.

    MM
    Sep 1 12:25 AM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Speculative Trading Indicates Rally Losing Steam [View article]
    Are you suggesting the only reason tech stocks crashed is because they didn't build "proper" bases? Valuation had nothing to do with it? If their bases were better, the dot.com stocks would still be making new highs today?

    Are you serious?

    MM


    On Aug 30 05:11 AM aarc wrote:

    > There is a big big difference between 1999 and 2009 for these kind
    > of stocks and stock runs.
    >
    > In 1999, the dot.coms did not provide enough retracements or pullbacks
    > ... so they did not have enough base preparations to sustain their
    > rallies into the year 2000. They simply kept going up without the
    > necessary corrections to support sustainable upsides. And so they
    > fell like a rock when the wind was taken out of their wings.
    >
    > Now look at AIG, FNM, and FRE; they kept building their bases from
    > March to July 2009 after an intial vertical rally in early March;
    > it is called a pullback or a correction and a significant one. Naturally,
    > after enough preparations had been made; the ensuing rally has a
    > better chance of sustaining itself for sometime before the next major
    > pullback or corrective action similar to the last one becomes necessary.
    >
    >
    > There is a good chance AIG will be able to reach the $62 to $75 range
    > but highly unlikely be able to reach or break above $110 upper run
    > rate limit before it will require another major pullback or correction
    > that can last 3 to 5 months.
    >
    > For FNM, the volume support of last week should be able to sustain
    > further runs into the $2.26 to $2.67 range with upside limit of $3.40
    > before it will need 3 to 5 months rest. Volume should start tapering
    > off as it approaches those upper ranges on the daily and weekly charts.
    >
    >
    > FRE and FNM are basically in tandem so they will rise and fall more
    > or less in synch with each other on the daily basis.
    >
    > It is very hard to make a bet against them when the volume of the
    > last few weeks indicated impulsive runs rather than corrective C-wave
    > run of a normal ABC upside correction or a bear rally or a bear flag
    > as most traders call it.
    >
    > Obviously, they are in a 1-2-3 Elliott Wave runs to the upside and
    > will need 3 to 5 months of 4-th wave correction before they can execute
    > the 5-th wave rally to complete the 1-2-3-4-5 basic pattern.
    >
    > After that, they will need bigger, longer and perhaps deeper corrections
    > that should not break the bottom lows in order to sustain further
    > rallies into the years/decades ahead. You may call it resting or
    > healing process or base building or a selloff or even a meltdown;
    > TAs called them pullbacks or corrections. Necessary ingriedient
    > toward building supports to sustain further rallies.
    >
    > It takes time and time is the essence in such a dibilitating circumstance
    > that should have bankcrupted them immediately.
    >
    > So unless any or all of them cannot heal themselves and build enough
    > bases in order to become profitable into the years and decades ahead;
    > they have the necessary volume supports right here at this tentative
    > bottom just by looking at their monthly charts.
    Aug 30 11:44 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Speculative Trading Indicates Rally Losing Steam [View article]
    This is very erroneous logic.

    The "stimulus" (read: debt) being created by the FED/Treasury is all being strapped to an already over-strapped consumer. The benefits of the added debt go the elite.

    If you think this is a prosperous system, then I can only assume you are a staunch supporter of colonial slavery as well? Though (arguably) less cruel, our modern economic system is in principle the same. The slaves do the work, and the masters get the bounty.

    Keep in mind that even the most fiscally responsible, conservative citizens are being saddled with involuntary debt. Regardless of your lifestyle, you will be paying your portion of TARP, TALF, CARS, et al.

    That is not Democracy, and it certainly isn't the system envisioned by the patriots that fought a war for their ideals.

    MM

    MM

    On Aug 29 01:51 PM ari5000 wrote:

    > Everyone's been calling the top for the last 3 months.
    >
    > Instead of wondering -- why is the market still going up?
    >
    > There's something new taking place. The Government has essentially
    > made an ALL IN bet by stimulating. The govt. has now replaced all
    > spending by the private sector and consumers in an attempt to keep
    > the economy alive. The financial sector only thrives if the economy
    > outside Wall Street thrives. By backstopping the banks, the Fed
    > is trying to have the tail wag the dog -- stimulate the banks and
    > hopefully, somehow, the financial dealings will stimulate the greater
    > economy.
    >
    > I believe this is why the zombie banks are now leading the pack --
    > it's an attempt by the Fed to up-end the nature of the business cycle.
    > It makes perfect sense as a government drowning in debt and creating
    > more each day -- absolutely NEEDS a growing economy... even if that
    > growth comes by simply through inflation.
    >
    > Predictions of a 1000 point drop are almost ridiculous at this point.
    > It shows a total lack of understanding of how a bankrupt entity like
    > AIG could rise 100% in the first place. The Fed cannot stop what
    > it has started. If the stimulus package fails, they will start a
    > new one... TARP, TALF, cash for clunkers, housing credits... I've
    > left out a dozen more. A crash? How? The Fed can spend more money
    > than the entire world. What could possibly cause a crash when the
    > Fed can spend infinite $$ ?? The Fed has supreme power now. Nobody
    > can stop them. The taxpayers have no voice. Congress work for the
    > corporations that benefit from Ponzi spending.
    >
    > The Fed has spent an is backstopping bets that probably equal a few
    > hundred grand per citizen. All traders need to maximize their share
    > of the takings. 90% of the trillions spent will go to a small percentage
    > of insiders. We are living in a country that no longer has a rational
    > government. The stock market, with zombie banks leading, clearly
    > reflects the new mentality.
    >
    > I feel sorry for those who 'cashed out' or are sitting in gold (which
    > the FCBs control an will never let rise) -- they are missing the
    > greatest giveaway this generation will ever see. And I really doubt
    > this is going to end any time soon.
    >
    > I can only dream of the next round of programs to come. But I will
    > stay fully invested to capture as much upside as I can.
    Aug 30 11:43 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • While Citigroup Jumps on John Paulson's Investment, AIG Jumps on Anything [View article]
    But even if they are government backed, that doesn't make them a good investment. It just means they won't go to zero, right? It does NOT make them any more profitable so the buying spree still doesn't make sense.

    I've said this before, but simply NOT going bankrupt doesn't make these stocks a good investment. At some point people will realize they are paying virtually infinity PEs for these "zombies" and the silliness will stop. OK, so BAC is not going bankrupt. Fine. That fact alone doesn't make it worth $156B which is the current market price.

    Most "bull" arguments I read essentially come down to this: yeah, I know its all BS, but I don't want to miss it and I'll just get out before it gets bad!

    Not exactly what I would call sound.

    MM
    Aug 28 11:20 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cash for Clunkers Coming Soon to Your Kitchen and Laundry Room [View article]
    I too have had the virus announcement on my iMac. I just hit cancel and hit back and have not had any problems.


    As for Michigan's 6% sales tax, I am quite jealous. Here in CA we pay 9.75% and it's only looking to go higher in the near future.

    The thing that keeps me sane and optimistic is that ultimately the solution is quite QUITE simple. Cut spending, shrink government, increase individual accountability.

    It's like weight loss. No matter how fat you get, the solution is the same and you will see results immediately once you change your lifestyle. That is what lets me hold on to the hope that at SOME point, collectively we will have our "aha" moment and decide to change.

    Hopefully it will be more peaceful than the last time.

    MM
    Aug 21 11:30 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Healthcare 'Debate' Dominated by Shouting and Lobbies [View article]
    John,

    You suggest that people will take a more proactive interest in health care if they are financially motivated. But people are physically motivated to take a proactive interest in their health and have utterly and completely failed.

    If people were as capable as you seem to think they are, then we wouldn't have this current housing/debt crisis. After all, our present situation essentially comes down to the average American not being able to manage a checkbook. People who make $50k/year and try to buy a $300k house are going to suddenly start making fiscally responsible choices about what's best for their health care? Really?

    If the average American had even a modicum of the intelligence and discipline you suggest, then 30% of the nation wouldn't be obese and 70% overweight. The easiest, most effective reduction to health care would be for our nation TO BE IN GOOD HEALTH.

    A simple 30 minute walk after dinner and consuming less than 3k calories per day would be an enormous reduction to our country's overall health care costs. I just find it hard to believe that these amorphous blobs who go to town hall meetings and yell, or sit at the tv and yell, or sit at the computer and yell are capable of the task at hand.

    To me, the actual HEALTH of our nation is the most disturbing issue.

    MM
    Aug 20 12:32 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Case for Shorting Bank of America [View article]
    Being backed by the government doesn't make it a good investment. It just means it won't go to 0. But look at FNM and FRE. Those are government backed. Or GM, or C or AIG. That could realistically happen to BAC.

    Government sponsorship isn't a business model that INVESTORS will applaud long term. Sure, the top executives, directors, etc. will make out handsomely from the government tit. But that's not exactly strong motivation for rational investors to hold or open new long positions in this stock.

    If the Post Office had an IPO tomorrow, would you buy it?

    MM
    Aug 19 08:27 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Have Americans Been Brainwashed by the Deflation Bogeyman? [View article]
    "4. You say that deflation is good so long as "prices fall more than wages". Sounds great, but what does mean exactly? It means declining profits for companies - that means less incentive to invest - that means less investment - that means less jobs - etc."

    That is incorrect because PROFIT is the bottom line. Revenues may decrease but if the bottom line goes up that is all any REAL investor cares about. Revenue could drop by 50% but if costs drop by 60% then Company X's PROFIT has INCREASED.

    MM
    Aug 18 06:43 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • From Today's Numbers, A Recovery Is Hard to See [View article]
    Well minimum wage needs to be eradicated before that can happen. The labor market is already over-supplied at $7-10/hour, so how would flooding the country with even more people looking for low-income work solve anything?

    MM


    On Aug 16 02:43 PM hep wrote:

    > Asians....what about the mexicans that the us government is spending
    > a fotune on trying to keep out. Let em all in, they just want to
    > work, buy stuff at our stores, buy houses, cars etc. The problem
    > with our system is overcapacity resulting in falling prices. The
    > only way to soak up this overcapacity is to increase demand, i.e.
    > more people to buy things. Whoever wants to come into the county
    > and work, should be let in.
    Aug 17 12:12 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Look - It's a V-Shaped Recovery [View article]
    Never heard that one before, but it made me laugh out loud (literally....not just "lol")

    MM


    On Aug 16 10:49 AM j-dub wrote:


    > Ever heard of the old saying- "Every economist knows 75 different
    > ways to make love, they just don't know any women."
    Aug 16 12:48 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
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