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  • CNBC: Microsoft held "significant talks" with Salesforce, disagreed on price [View news story]
    First of all, its old news for a sleepy day and secondly, a year ago, it would have made sense. Today, its way too late and for all intents and purposes, they are joined at the hip already with no promises and no expense.

    CRM already gets the benefit of Msft's business customers and Msft already gets the benefit of using CRM applications. At this point, nothing to be gained here. A year ago, it would have been nice to integrate the two companies and it would have been nice to have Benioff sit on the Board and it would have been nice to weave new applications into business offerings, but today?

    Best advice for both is to stick to their knitting before someone else comes along and knocks them both off their perches. They should both be looking for smaller acquisitions and this time I wouldn't wait too long.
    May 22, 2015. 05:01 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Government to raise Medicare Advantage rates, not cut them [View news story]
    You talkin to me?
    May 22, 2015. 04:50 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Report: Google plans to launch IoT OS, likely under Android label [View news story]
    This is the monopoly I know and love. Let 'em have it.
    May 22, 2015. 02:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • FOMC: June rate hike about off the table [View news story]
    Its just that I don't think low rates necessarily help the economy or that higher rates will necessarily restrain it. I do think low rates helped the stock market and sooner or later the Fed, warranted or not, will raise rates and that is likely to effect the market as well.

    The market should be reflecting growth and profits and proficiency of management and not cheap money and maybe one of these days, it will. It also might be a good idea to invest for the long term in a diversified portfolio and you wont have to worry about it too much.

    I do agree that bonds are way overvalued but you know what they say, the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent.

    And if you can't afford that house at 4.5% then you couldn't really afford it at 3.5% either.
    May 20, 2015. 09:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • FOMC: June rate hike about off the table [View news story]
    I honestly don't know how much the low rate policy is helping, one way or the other. I've never really seen any data to support a solid argument that low rates boost the economy or high rates restrain it. They are assumptions that are tacked on to one political rhetoric or another.

    In the face of a dangerous economic situation, like 2008, I see why Bernanke threw in the kitchen sink. It was a risk assessment. And it was understandable why the markets reacted to it the way they did. They were mollified of extreme fear and panic. But real economic change? It wasn't so bad to begin with and its not so good now.

    There was a financial panic, for whatever reason, but the underlying economic realities were okay. The overvalued needed correction. It didn't need everyone to run for the exits anymore than it needs free money now.

    This economy has structural growth issues within the global framework and without it. We have demographic changes to deal with, we have political insanity run amok by a know nothing media, and we have to step back and try to assess how we really let this economy grow without training wheels and without central planners thinking they suddenly have the goose that laid the golden eggs and that its all up to them to just let her do her business. That was a fairy tale. And I suspect, so are zero interest rates.
    May 20, 2015. 03:32 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Virtual doctor app available to Illinois Walgreens customers soon [View news story]
    Not criticizing but is that $49 to ask a medical question of a computer? A lot cheaper to go to a library and WebMD it.
    May 20, 2015. 02:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • FOMC: June rate hike about off the table [View news story]
    No surprise there. And probably none in Sept. either.
    May 20, 2015. 02:13 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google starting road tests for self-driving car prototypes [View news story]
    Very poetic but poetry doesn't fall to the bottom line and every good VC has to make money or go out of business. Most times VC's fail. That doesn't mean they shouldn't keep trying but most ideas end up on the scrap heap of history. Capital has to used wisely not just thrown at the wall.

    Wisely used capital find the ideas that succeed for the long term, make people rich, and create industries, jobs, futures, educations and dreams for millions around the world. Those are the reasons anyone tries in the first place.

    And you know it when you see it. Some genius ideas hit you like a thunderbolt. When Steve Jobs held up the IPhone and intro'd ITunes, you got goose bumps. You knew it when you saw it. Some genius ideas sneak up on you. When Zuckerberg gave his first quarter conference call, you knew it. The networking effect on steroids.

    Safety? You are going to have to be a little more specific on how, what, when, where and why and how much. I do believe in the IoT but for JIT inventory without pilferage, for trafficking of goods, for safety on the battlefield, for new medicines that communicate where diseases are and how to kill them and for understanding what people don't even know they want yet. So Safety? What do you mean? Without the poetry please.
    May 17, 2015. 02:25 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google starting road tests for self-driving car prototypes [View news story]
    Goog collects and sells data to marketers. And they don't have to have self driving cars to get that. What else didn't I get? As far as not having to park the car yourself, you still must have a licensed driver behind the wheel even if he is not in the act of driving.

    Maybe you can ask him to drop off the car in the lot and pick you up when you call. And we refer to him as a limo driver around here.
    May 17, 2015. 12:06 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google starting road tests for self-driving car prototypes [View news story]
    I didn't say that. The car had advantages, it could be manufactured in bulk at lower prices with less risk. It could be large enough to carry cargo with a lower cost to get it from place to place. I'm not against self driving cars, I just don't see the economy of it.

    Instead of mocking my remarks, how about expanding on what you see are the benefits that justify the expense. Goog shareholders do have a right to ask about what they are thinking.

    Personally If its just pie in the sky, I would have liked a self flying car. One that goes up like a helicopter instead of needing a runway so it would be available in urban centers. Like a large drone maybe.

    Talk about no traffic, that's the ticket, or not, no speeding involved.
    May 16, 2015. 03:24 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Google starting road tests for self-driving car prototypes [View news story]
    Is that the justification for Goog spending so much money to develop this technology? Saving money on car insurance and no more DUI's? What do you want to bet that the rules for how intoxicated the person (does he/she still have to have a drivers license?) is allowed to be while having to sit in the driver's seat (mandatory I understand) wont be any different anyway. So in the event there is an accident and the person in the driver's seat is impaired, he or she will still be held accountable.

    And I don't see insurance companies doing away with motor vehicle insurance. Do you? So what is the point? Safety? People speed now. They know they would be safer not to, but they do it anyway. People consume intoxicants now, they would be safer if they didn't but they do it anyway. You might not, but the next driver might not be as mindful as you and he might not be driving a self driving car. Someone must still be able to handle a vehicular emergency so therefore must insure for it or be held accountable for the risk. How do you come up with Safer out of that?

    And do you really believe people are going to buy self driving cars in large enough numbers to justify someone actually manufacturing them at an affordable price? Elon Musk maybe?

    Maybe its me, but I just don't get it. Couldn't Goog come up with something better to throw money at?
    May 16, 2015. 02:52 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • McDonald's unveils turnaround plan [View news story]
    I've had the grilled chix club, was pretty good.
    May 4, 2015. 01:22 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • McDonald's unveils turnaround plan [View news story]
    No reason not to make "special sauces" for offer different cheeses or that are Mexican and Chinese and Japanese and Thai with a side of McVeggies Tempura or a HotHotHot Weiner or McChix or something like that. The choices are endless and delicious. McD's is one CEO away from greatness again. Their distribution model is the envy of the industry. But they have to dust off the lackadaisical corporate culture.
    May 4, 2015. 01:21 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • McDonald's unveils turnaround plan [View news story]
    I have no problem with what the new CEO said, I have a problem with what he didn't say. Okay, Lets go Mets and lets ensure that the shareholders see value. Great. Now what? Now, get to the issues of why McD's is not performing the way it can. Let the new CEO throw the kitchen sink into the next qtr, they all do it, no surprise there. But then, get down to business. Then McD's can turn around. The real estate is amazing, so is the mind share. And the fries are the best. The new CEO needs to be aggressive and not just in financial engineering. He needs to eat there, regularly.
    May 4, 2015. 12:46 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • McDonald's unveils turnaround plan [View news story]
    Shake Shack has no problem selling burgers, Domino's has no problem selling pizza. Its not the food idea, its the food. They don't want a "healthier" choice, they want a good tasting, affordable choice served in a comfortable, safe, clean environment. And they don't want to be embarrassed that they are going to eat there.

    1)Make a better burger 2)Advertise it better, Ronald has retired 3)Clean up the stores, they look dirty, uncomfortable and unappetizing. That's it. Its not brain surgery.
    May 4, 2015. 11:29 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment