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  • Recession Risk: The Threat Of Rising Interest Rates [View article]

    "I don't see how the Fed is waging war on me. "

    That's a pretty callous attitude. Not every grandma and grandpa wants to be invested fully in stocks despite what the FED wants nor should they be forced into taking risks if they don't want to.

    In practical terms, you could have generated a "risk-free" 4.5% return from online savings account in 2007/2008 which means that on $1 million dollars that's about about $45,000 dollars of income per year.

    Today that same account generates $5,000 dollars on the same amount of money.

    That's a massive cut in income and terrifying for someone that is risk-averse and dependent upon their principal for their livelihoods. Despite all of the reports of huge annual increases in equities, the truth is we are still below the highs of 5 years ago so anyone who has been a buy and holder, which is typical of the older cohort, is simply back to where they were assuming they didn't panic and remained invested.

    In aggregate, according to the Economist Magazine, the low interest rate regime has reduced annual interest income by:
    "The Fed cut rates to current levels at the end of 2008 and has promised to keep them there until 2015. Since 2008, personal interest income has plunged 30%, or $432 billion at an annual rate, more than 4% of disposable income."

    I don't know if the FED is actually suppressing rates through their activities or whether we have the interest rates that reflect the current strength of the economy but either way Savers are getting hosed.
    Dec 8, 2012. 12:00 PM | 36 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Obama appoints Ebola czar [View news story]
    You really think this guy is the most qualified person for handling something of this incredible seriousness in the entire universe of available applicants?

    I don't.

    I bet there are at least 10,000 people that are more qualified than a politically oriented lawyer to handle what could ultimately become the most dangerous national security risk of our lifetime.

    Of course we as citizens have to speak up when the government has revealed itself to beyond incompetent and verging on dangerous.

    But I am glad it doesn't bother you.
    Oct 17, 2014. 01:52 PM | 27 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Conservative Positions For A Liberal World [View article]
    I am amazed by how many angry liberals there are on these blogs considering they won the election and kicked our collective conservative butts. We having been crushed have the right to express our anger and misery, it's part of the cathartic process of getting over grief :)

    What's the liberal's excuse for being so petty and miserable?

    Maybe there is something about being a liberal that just makes you angry all the time ;)
    Nov 13, 2012. 09:43 AM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Effects Of Obamacare On Employment [View article]

    Unless you have more than 50 employees, the impact upon your company will not be as direct but it is going to bite hard on the economy and then ultimately this trickles down to you.

    Obamacare taxes coming in 2013 and beyond will be a fiscal cliff all on their own.

    On a personal note, I pay for my own health insurance. My premiums have risen from $800/mth in 2009 to $1150/mth now. I call that a huge increase especially since I pay with aftertax dollars - exactly the opposite of what was promised by the President.

    Obamacare is a massive tax increase for both businesses and individuals, in addition to being a gigantic, bureaucratic, wet blanket for any company over 50 employees. Why else do you need a new army of IRS agents to deal with the enforcement and paperwork?

    This is the most gigantic expansion of government since the New Deal and will permanently crowd out productive capital into government hands. When you expand the amount of government as a percentage of GDP, by definition you have removed capital from the private sector if the pie remains the same which come Jan 1st will be the case - money will be taken out of private hands and put into government hands.

    Unfortunately this is an experiment in big government whose results will not reveal themselves for many years. My assumption is of course based upon the fact that anything government does is going to be less efficient and effective by definition. You may of course disagree with that assumption.

    In any event, it's done and we will be living with the consequences for a long, long time.
    Nov 10, 2012. 12:14 PM | 18 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Obama appoints Ebola czar [View news story]
    This would be hilarious if it weren't so tragic :(
    Oct 17, 2014. 01:45 PM | 17 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tesla Motors talks range and self-driving features [View news story]
    I am awaiting comments from the gentlemen who said this will be "an ICBM to the Shorts!" to make his appearance and explain how we have misunderstood this announcement.

    P.S. I have to thank all the vocal shorts on this board for convincing me to open a short put position today using a Jan 2017 expiration. It really appears to me that this is a pure hype driven, pump and dump scenario that should unravel upon any form of overall market weakness.

    The Tesla is an amazing piece of engineering but the company is another matter. If they could build a car with a 500 mile range then I think that would be a real game-changer. Until then Range Anxiety is a real disorder and it is always funny when the CEO calls attention to the biggest weakness of the product in such a sensational way - sure seems like he is a frenemy :)
    Mar 19, 2015. 12:44 PM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Tax On Dividend-Paying Stocks Rising To 74% [View article]
    "The double taxation of dividends and capital gains continues to reflect the populist bias of those who don't understand basic economics."

    Considering Jersey Shore was hit show that kind of tells you what the level of intellect is in this country. I am guessing the children of our Founding Fathers and their backwoods pioneers had better reading and comprehension skills than our current crop of educated youth.
    Dec 2, 2012. 11:40 AM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The S&P 500 Today Versus The 2007 Peak [View article]
    "While the Federal Reserve had begun its first cuts of the Fed Funds rate one month prior to the S&P 500 making its high, it had only been reduced to 4.75%. With the 10-year at 4.67%, the market was pricing in additional cuts as growth was expected to slow."

    On a million bucks you could have generated $45-50,000 in income virtually "risk-free" in most online savings accounts. Now you are lucky if you get $2k - now that's a pay cut!

    When will they declare victory in the "War On Savers"?
    Sep 21, 2012. 09:45 AM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • After three "jobless recoveries" in the last twenty years, NYT's Hedrick Smith suggests it's time to take a lesson from Henry Ford. History has proven Ford's virtuous circle to be effective, and if business managers "give the middle class a better share of the nation’s economic gains... the economy will grow faster." [View news story]
    Perhaps, a President Romney might turn this around.
    Sep 3, 2012. 11:49 AM | 13 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Is Tesla Silent On The Good ZEV News? [View article]
    So much corporate welfare - its nauseating. Picking and choosing winners based upon what government thinks is best for the public is a fool's errand at best and crony capitalism at worst. Without California's corporate welfare would this company even survive?

    Yes I think "xxx" oil company should not receive special treatment, etc.

    I don't believe in wars for oil either ;)

    As an investor in Tesla, you have to acknowledge the fear that the political climate will change so a company whose very survival depends upon this corporate welfare has a gigantic risk-factor in play that is not well understood.

    Relying upon the kindness of strangers is never a good business strategy :)
    Apr 13, 2015. 12:40 PM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • As corn prices explode in the face of the worst drought in over a half century, ethanol, once touted as the homegrown, eco-friendly replacement for foreign oil, is fast becoming the new product everyone loves to hate. The fact is however, we've come to rely on the corn-based fuel's high octane level as a boost to the sub-grade gasoline currently being churned out of our nation's refineries. The crisis leaves us with two tough choices: higher gas prices, or higher food prices.  [View news story]

    The only reason it was able to be put forward as a national security initiative was that it was originally intended to combat global warming. This fraud was cloaked in the guise of "saving the planet" which is why it was so easy to get through Congress. Who wants to vote against saving the planet?

    So we get another unintended negative consequence of following the fraudulent science of man-made global warming fraud. Fraud and lies beget more fraud and lies.
    Jul 28, 2012. 12:15 PM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is The Debt Issue Phony? [View article]
    Who's the phony?

    " I rise today to talk about America’s debt problem.

    The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. Over the past 5 years, our federal debt has increased by $3.5 trillion to $8.6 trillion. That is ‘‘trillion’’ with a ‘‘T.’’ That is money that we have borrowed from the Social Security trust fund, borrowed from China and Japan, borrowed from American taxpayers. And over the next 5 years, between now and 2011, the President’s budget will increase the debt by almost another $3.5 trillion.
    This rising debt is a hidden domestic enemy, robbing our cities and States of critical investments in infrastructure like bridges, ports, and levees; robbing our families and our children of critical investments in education and health care reform; robbing our seniors of the retirement and health security they have counted on.

    Every dollar we pay in interest is a dollar that is not going to investment in America’s priorities. Instead, interest payments are a significant tax on all Americans—a debt tax that Washington doesn’t want to talk about.
    Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that ‘‘the buck stops here.’’ Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.

    I therefore intend to oppose the effort to increase America’s debt limit”

    Full Text of Obama’s Speech Against Raising the Debt Ceiling in 2006
    Oct 4, 2013. 03:25 PM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Add Brian White to the growing list of Apple (AAPL -1.3%) fans who think a bigger iPhone is needed. "We are being told that the minimum size needed by Apple is a 4.5-inch display on the iPhone; however, a 5-inch to 5.5-inch would be optimal," writes the Topeka analyst after talking with Chinese/Taiwanese suppliers. Also: Cowen sees more room for iPad growth in the U.S., citing encouraging survey data, and BTIG's Walter Piecyk, who recently upgraded Apple, thinks a new capital-allocation plan will be timed to coincide with a downbeat FQ2 report (results are due on April 23). [View news story]
    AAPL made a mistake when they failed to offer choice and the stock price reflects it. Some people genuinely want bigger screens on their phone even if AAPL doesn't want them to want that.

    Why not have multiple sizes to satisfy everyone?

    This reminds me of the old Model T analogy: You can have any color you want as long as it is black.

    This company needs to become a lot more nimble again.
    Apr 5, 2013. 02:08 PM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • As corn prices explode in the face of the worst drought in over a half century, ethanol, once touted as the homegrown, eco-friendly replacement for foreign oil, is fast becoming the new product everyone loves to hate. The fact is however, we've come to rely on the corn-based fuel's high octane level as a boost to the sub-grade gasoline currently being churned out of our nation's refineries. The crisis leaves us with two tough choices: higher gas prices, or higher food prices.  [View news story]
    "Dealing with the issue leaves us with two choices: higher gas prices, or higher food prices."

    That statement is a complete and utter lie.
    Jul 28, 2012. 12:01 PM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple (AAPL) won't include a YouTube (GOOG) app with iOS 6 - users will have to download an app from the App Store. No details have been given on the reason for the move, which follows Apple's decision to drop Google Maps in favor of a proprietary mapping solution. YouTube and its short-form content have proven extremely popular on mobile devices.  [View news story]
    Even when you are imprisoned in the world's most beautiful walled garden, you still remain a prisoner and subject to the whims of your warden :)

    AAPLbots you are free to attack now ;)
    Aug 6, 2012. 03:08 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment