Wednesday, November 26, 2008

This'n'That; November 26th [Thoughts;Economy]

I Had A Harrowing Thought... The times we're living in.... right now...... this moment..... are someone else's "good ol' days." I've been a life-long smoker, for the past five years or so, a pipe smoker. I don't smoke indoors, even if the commie-libs would allow it. This past afternoon around 2:30 or 3, I stepped out on the front porch to "do a bowl," nope...... it was right-handed tobacco!!! An RPD cop came down the nearest cross street, turned onto our street and parked in front of my neighbor's house, kinda between two driveways serving the houses across the street. I could see up most of the length of both driveways. There was a silver-gray sedan parked in the right hand driveway [I'm sure the car didn't "live" there]. The side door of the house opened, the trunk lid popped up, a guy put a large box in the trunk, backed out of the driveway and drove off at a normal rate of speed [the opposite way the cop-car was facing]. Just after the car got out of sight, the cop did a double-quick K turn and sped after the gray car. Apparently, the police department had received a silent alarm and responded to it. Hopefully, the police apprehended the culprit. I want MY "good ol' days" back...... the time when my parents didn't even know where the key to the front door was, let alone locked the door; the time when a car could be left idling in the driveway to warm it up; the time when your neighbor borrowed tools when you weren't home-AND RETURNED them, usually cleaned up, full of gas, etc; the time when the lady next door needed acuppa sugar to finish a recipe, she came in and got it, told you what she did when she saw you and returned it the day she did her shopping; the time when kids could leave their bikes in the front yard any time, day or night, and not worry about it-if it was gone, they knew it'd be back soon, somebody just borrowed it to run uptown for their mother. Will "October Surprise" Be PEBO's Undoing? Most pundits consider the recent economic downturn to be PEBO's "October Surprise." He's gotta deal with MASSIVE outlays in the form of bailouts as well as all those "pie-in-the-sky" promises he made during the campaign. Lemme askya.... how does an administration cut federal spending and still bail out "everybody-and-his-brother?" That's the latest in the PEBO promises. Let's take a close look at what's gone on sofar: The federal government has pledged to lend $7.4Trillion to bail out financial institutions, more than the U.S. spent on the whole of WWII [adj for inflation]. That sum equates to $24,000 for EVERY man, woman and child in America today!! So far, the feds have spent $4.3Trillion in bailouts: $900Billion for the Term Auction Facility; $112Billion for AIG; $540Billion for Money Market funds; $700Billion for the Treasury Asset Relief Program [TARP], and there's EVEN MORE!! Given the selection of Tim Geithner as Secretary of the Treasury, most think the BO-"Clinton Lite" cabinet is just going to be "more-of-the-same" as far as administrations go. Now I direct you to someone far more elequent than I-Chris Whalen, a risk management and loan workout services provider. Mr Whalen writes a blog at He's far-and-away, the most indepth, knowledgeable blogger on the topics of the economy, finance, Wall Street, etc. Til Nex'time....................



Monday, November 24, 2008

This'n'That; November 25th [Policitics;Quotations]

It's The Economy, Stupid!! Remember the "Slick Willie" mantra.......? well it's gonna apply for YEARS!! I found some quotes from some famous folks that apply in today's economic turmoil. If these folks of the "geezer" classification had it figured out so many years ago, why can't today's American and global leaders? Do they not understand that if they have no knowledge of past failings, they are destined to repeat them? "Prosperity cannot be restored by raids upon the public Treasury." "[N]o country can squander itself to prosperity on the ruin of its taxpayers." Herbert Hoover [1874-1964], 31st U.S. President [1929-1933] "The things that will destroy America are prosperity-at-any-price, peace-at-any-price, safety-first instead of duty-first, the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life." Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919], 26th U.S. President [1901-1909] "Agriculture,manufacture[r]s,commerce and navigation, the four pillars of our prosperity, are then most thriving when left most free to individual enterprise." Thomas Jefferson [1743-1826], 3rd U.S. President [1801-1809]-1st annual message to Congress, Dec 8,1801. "You must pay at last your own debt. If you are wise, you will dread a prosperity which only loads you with more." Ralph Waldo Emmerson [1803-1882], American essayist, poet, philosopher. "The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists." Ernest Hemingway [1899-1961], American author. Til Nex'time..............



This'n'That; November 24th[Politics;Econ;Stocks]

Ya Gonna Git Whatcha Voted For? I have discussed the current political climate with several "30-somethings" who, if not Obama supporters they at least either voted FOR Obama or AGAINST McCain. Several [of both genders] have expressed disappointment in what they're seeing in the news. The Obama cabinet as the media is reporting it, appears it's gonna be "Clinton-Lite." "Slick-Willie" didn't do the country any favors during his administration!! The presidency was a platform for his "one-world government" philosophy. Oh..... and as a "talent agency" to search for 20-somethings for him to boink!! I'll betcha a-dollar-to-a-doughnut..... Michelle Obama had some [read; alotta] input into the choice for Secretary of State!! With Hillary close at hand, Michelle will have a ready source of information as to the ins-and-outs [excuse the pun!!] of Oval Office philandering. Remember, "Slick Willie" honed philandering to a fine art!! Another "point-to-ponder" Since the election, PEBO has NOT been to church once!! The last time he attended regularly was during his campaign in North Carolina, surprisingly, home of a large number of CHRISTIAN VOTERS!! Stocks, The Market, etc Well, here we go again... another week in the market. Don't expect the "hills and valleys" to disappear; we're gonna be seeing them for months, if not years, to come. Remember all those stocks that, years ago, were too pricey to invest in? Although they were good values, ya jis didn't have the money to jump in. NOW IS THE TIME to revisit them, like IBM, Nike, eBay, Microsoft, etc. While their prices may not have dropped all that much, relative to the Dow-Jones, most of them have had tremendous advances in profits, cash flow, dividend rates, P/Es, etc. It's kinda like going to the store and finding nearly all the products on sale!! Let's have a look at a few of the better ones: IBM [Ticker:IBM]-dividends paid since 1913; past 5 years dividend raised 20%; since 2006 dividend nearly doubled-now $2.00/share; company generates gobbs of cash [2007=$17.4billion]; 11/21 stock price: $74.88/share. NIKE Sportswear [Ticker:NKE]-Largest market share in U.S. [36%]; 2/3 of sales OUTSIDE U.S.; uses cash flow to pay dividends, acquire companies, buy back it's stock; since 2003, raised dividend 27% annually-now $0.92/share; price: 11/20-$43.61/share. STRYKER -Ticker:SYK]-Maker of hospital supplies and surgical-implant devices; generates $1billion in free cash flow annually; more than $2.5billion in the bank; spends on acquisitions and dividends; dividends doubled in 2007, another +50% in 2008, to $0.33/share; growth prospects good due to aging "boomer" population; stellar management track record; price: 11/21=$37.39/share. Expeditors International of Washington-[Ticker: EXPD]-Leases airline and ship cargo space for resale; last 5 years revenues risen 15% annually; profit margin just under 30%; no debt; low investment requirements; dividend has risen 13 continuous years-currently $0.32/share; $704million in the bank; price:11/20-$26.56/share [about 50% of 52 week high]. Canadian National Railway [Ticker:CNI]-Trackage from Atlantic to Pacific Oceans and Gulf of Mexico; diversified customer base-wood products, oil, chemicals, grain, oil and auto parts; intermodal [containers] transportation=18% of revenue-up 15% in 2007; average annual earnings growth 26% over last 5 years; average annual dividend 24% over 5 years; current dividend: $0.86/share; repurchased 31 million shares in 2007; price:11/21-$32.95/share. eBAY [Ticker:EBAY]-May be too cheap to pass with a P/E of 9; auctions only 33% of revenue; PayPal revenue rose 33% in 2007; Skype revenue rose 51% in 2007; also owns StubHub, and several classified ad sites; will buy BillMeLater-similar to PayPal prefered by large retailers; expected 2008 earnings growth-14%; expected 2009 earnings growth-10%; no debt; $3.7Billion in the bank; $2Billion in annual free cash flow; no dividend; price:11/21-12.01. AT&T [Ticker:T]-Out of favor due to slow growth in wire-line phone service [18% of revenues]; largest U.S. wireless carrier [73Million]; earnings growth forecasts: 2008-7%, 2009-9%; annual dividend-$1.60/share; price:11/21-$25.19. Microsoft [Ticker-MSFT]-Profits nearly quadrupled since 2002, stock price has been stagnant; this has caused it's P/E ratio to contract [a good thing!]; company expected earnings growth of only 13-16%; company's programs run 90% of world's computers; $24Billion in the bank; $18Billion in annual free cash flow; it's corporate-server-software business now 22% of $60Billion annual revenues; dividend $0.52/share; price: 11/20-$19.68. Illinois Tool Works [Ticker:ITW]- Company owns 825 companies in 52 countries-368 purchased since 1998; companies focused to best serve the 20% of customers that provide 80% of profits; long term, company expects to realize 10-13% annual revenue growth; reasonable debt load, plenty of cash; dividend-$1.24/share; price: 11/19-$31.01/share. Although all this information is on the internet for the taking; I found most of it in the latest [Dec-'08] issue of Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine. REMEMBER:Due diligence pays dividends all it's own!!! Til Nex'time.....................



Wednesday, November 19, 2008

This'n''That; November 23rd[Economy, Welfare,Monetary Policy]

Everything's Tied Together.... Anybody noticing how everything "economic" is tied together? The 1929 stock market crash, the "Great Depression," the "New Deal," the Bretton Woods Conference, The "Great Society"and today's economic disaster with the ongoing bail-outs.... all tied together!! Some of these ties are based on misbeliefs and outright falsehoods. BUT, go beyond the basic verbage of each of the plans. You'll see an overall plan unfold that parallels the Democrat Party's basic socialist philosophy which includes social engineering. The more of the American population they can have depending on the federal government for their every NEED, nay..... their every WANT, the easier it is to control that sizeable portion of the population. As you read event after event it should become clear that they have realized their objective, but at a terrible expense. That expense is realized in a diminished will to work, a diminished will to succeed and a diminished will to be independent. While race seems not a factor in the federal dependency, it appears that some have traded one form of slavery for another; from the plantation owner to the federal "master." What initially started out as a "hand-up" has evolved into a "hand-out." In the '40s, '50s and early '60s, there was a stigma attached to receiving public handouts; whether justified or not, a certain perseived shame was involved. Initially, recipients had to report to the county office building once a month to receive their benefits, in person-in cash. Later checks were mailed to the recipients mailing address. Still later, the funds were electronically transferred to a debit type card, they didn't have to even "show their faces" to collect money they didn't earn from the taxes YOU AND I PAID!! The Wall Street Crash of 1929. Also known as "the crash of '29," this fiasco was precipitated by easy credit[-sound familiar??]. Around mid-1924 investors began a run-up of The Dow [Dow-Jones Industrial Average;DJIA] that reached it's peak on 09/03/1929, at 381.17. During this five-year run, everyone was "in the market," businessmen at every level, right down to the lowliest of manual laborers. At the height of the frenzy, even mothers were investing their "milk-and-egg" money. During the early part of the run, brokers began "lending" investment funds to their clients via margin accounts [buying "on margin" involved only putting up a percentage of the stocks' selling price]. The margin rates became greater and greater as time went on, allowing investors to put up less and less of their own money. At it's peak at least 8.5 BILLION had been loaned to buy stocks, more than the total amount of currency in circulation at the time. After the September peak in the Dow, the market began falling sharply, for about a month. This intial leg caused the Dow to lose 17% of it's value. Early in October, 1929, the market began to recover, only to return to a downward trend. After mid-October, the decline accellerated, culminating with "Black Thursday [10/24/1929]" when a record 12.9 million shares changed hands. By comparison, now a billion-plus shares are traded on the average day. On Friday afternoon, October 25, 1929, several prestigious Wall Street bankers met to discuss solutions to the market chaos. They included Thomas Lamont [Morgan Bank], Albert Wiggin [Chase National Bank] and Charles Mitchell [National City Bank]. They chose Richard Whitney, VP-NYSE, to act on their behalf. Mr Whitney used a tactic that ended "The Panic of 1907," making large-block purchases at prices above the current quote. He succeeded in stopping the slide that day, but it was only temporary. The following Monday, October 28th, many more investors sold as opposed to those that bought, causing another slide in the Dow, down 13% for the day. The next day, "Black Tuesday [10/29/1929]," 16.5 million shares were traded, breaking the previous record of just five days ago. William Durant, the founder of General Motors, joined the Rockefeller family among others and together bought large blocks of stocks to show the public their confidence in the stock market. Didn't work!! The Dow lost another 12% that day making the total loss for the week $30BILLION. The weekly loss was more than ten times the federal annual budget; far more than the United States spent in all of World War I. Through the remainder of 1929 and into the early 1930s, the Dow recorded many peaks and valleys. Finally, the market bottomed out at 41.22 on July 8, 1932, stopped a gradual slide that equated to a loss of 89% in value!! The market wouldn't reach it's pre-crash breakeven point until November, 1954, over twenty-five years!! "The Great Depression" was precipitated by the stock market crash of 1929. With the loss of value in American companies, there was no reason to continue with the number of workers, thus started climbing unemployment rates. As with the DJIA during 1929 and beyond, the unemployment rate had it's peaks and valleys. Rates by the year for the decade of the 1930s:1930-8.7%; 1931-15.9%; 1932-23.6%; 1933-24.9%; 1934-21.7%; 1935-20.1%; 1936-16.9%; 1937-14.3%; 1938-19.0%; 1939-17.2%; 1940-14.6%. The years during World War II fared much better with all U.S. companies geared up for war production, 1942-4.7%; 1944-1.2%; 1946-3.9%. Although the premise is based on faulty beliefs and information, many believe that President Roosevelt's [FDR] plans and programs brought America out of the depression. Not So!! Check the unemployment rate numbers-unsatisfactory rates prevailed until the U.S. entered WWII. With our entry into the war, production concentrated on war materiel. The production was ratcheted up so high that most factories ran 24/7/365!! The highest rates in the modern era were under Presidents Reagan [1982-9.7%] and "Slick Willie" [1992-7.5%]. FDR's "New Deal" provided America with many of his "alphabet soup" employment concoctions. Initially, FDR used the phrase "a New Deal" in his acceptance speech at the 1932 Democratic National Convention: "I pledge to you, I pledge to myself, to a new deal for the American people." Thus began America's infatuation with wealth re-distribution. Just days after his inauguration, President Roosevelt's efforts began on March 6, 1933, by proclaiming a 'bank holiday' which ran from March 6 to March 9. At the same time he called congress back to Washington for a special session [lasting from 03/09-06/15/1933]. During that session, congress passed much of the President's program. The program included the Emergency Banking Act[EBA], the Federal Emergency Relief Administration [FERA], the Agricultural Adjustment Act[AAA] and the National Industrial Recovery Act[NIRA] and created the Tennessee Valley Authority[TVA]. Also during this session, the president took the U.S. off the "gold standard" to prevent a run on it's gold reserves by those worried about the value of U.S.' currency. Later New Deal legislation created public housing for workers, unemployment insurance, social security for retiring/retired workers, made federal grants to states to provide welfare for needy families with children, established a legal framework for organizing labor unions, a legal framework for collective bargaining, the Civilian Conservation Corps [CCC], the Works Progress Administration [WPA], the Federal Communications Commission [FCC], the Securities and Exchange Commission [SEC], the National Labor Relations Board [NLRB], the Federal Housing Administration [FHA], the Rural Electrification Administration [REA], [TAKE A BREATH HERE!!] Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation [FDIC], Civil Works Administration [CWA], Indian Reorganization Act [IRA], Social Security Act [SSA], the Fair Labor Standards Act [FLSA], the Federal Surplus Relief Corporation [FSRC] and [WHEW!!] the Farm Credit Administration. Most of the programs were ended at the beginning of World War II-the unemployment rate had dropped significantly, to the low single digits. All these Roosevelt employment/public relief programs had a devastating effect on the U.S. economy, namely the national debt. As a percentage of the Gross National Product [GNP], the national debt climbed from less than 20% under the Hoover Administration to over 40% under the Roosevelt Administration. By comparison, during WWII the national debt reached a peak of near 135% of GNP!! While the "alphabet soup" programs put many Americans to work, some programs had a detrimental affect on employment and the economy. For instance, many argue that programs such as Social Security, work relief, unemployment insurance, mandatory minimum wages and without special federal privileges for labor unions, the business community would have hired more workers and the unemployment rate during the New Deal years would have been 6.7% rather than the actual 17.2%. The Bretton Woods Conference [the United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference] was convened on July 1 thru 22, 1944, in Bretton Woods, N.H. This was attended by 730 representatives from all 44 "allied" nations. The primary conditions which necessitated the conference were: The shared experiences of The Great Depression, the concentration of power in a small number of countries and the willingness of a dominant power to oversee global monetary affairs. This conference set up rules, institutions and procedures to regulate the international monetary system. To oversee the regulation, the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development [IBRD] and the International Monetary Fund[IMF] were established. They became operational in 1946, after a sufficient number of countries had ratified the agreements. The chief features of the Bretton Woods system were; An obligation for each country to adopt a monetary policy that maintained the exchange rate of it's currency within a fixed rate, +/- 1% in terms of gold; the ability of the IMF to bridge temporary imbalances of payments. This system collapsed in 1971 after the U.S. suspended the dollar's conversion to gold. Many conservatives believe that this conference was an attempted first step toward a one-world government, through a one-world currency. That still may be a high-priority objective by many in the Democrat Party and former members of American royalty. The "Great Society" First mention of this phrase was during President Lyndon Johnson's commencement speech at the University of Michigan, May 22, 1964. It next [officially] appeared in his State of the Union to Congress, January 7, 1965. The Great Society's major areas of concentration [with associated legislation] were: Civil Rights [The Civil Rights Act of 1964; The Voting Rights Act of 1965; The Immigration and Nationality Services Act of 1965]; War on Poverty [the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964; the Neighborhood Youth Corps; Volunteers in Service to America {VISTA}; the Model Cities Program; Upward Bound; the Food Stamp program; the Community Action Program; Project Head Start]; Education [the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965; The Higher Education Act of 1965; National Teachers Corps; Bilingual Education Act of 1968]; Health [The Social Security Act of 1965]; Arts and Cultural Institutions [the National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act; the American Council of Learned Societies {ACLS}; the Council of Graduate Schools in America]; Public Broadcasting [The Public Broadcasting Act of 1967; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; the Public Broadcasting Service {PBS}; Cultural Centers [several pieces of federal legislation created: the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; the Smithsonian Institution Art Museum for the National Mall; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden]; Transportation [The Department of Transportation; The Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964; The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966; the Highway Safety Acto of 1966] and the Environment [the Clean Air, Water Quality and Clean Water Restoration Acts; the Wilderness Act of 1964; th Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966; the National Trails System Act of 1968; the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act of 1968; the Land and Water Conservation Act of 1965; the Solid Waste Disposal Act of 1965; the Motor Vehicle Air Pollution Control Act of 1965; the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966; the Aircraft Noise Abatement Act of 1968; the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969].

Anybody seeing the trend here? The more federal funds are made available to advocacy groups, the more people become dependent on the federal government for their very existance. Where does it all stop.... this out-of-control deficit spending.... just to put more on the dole to buy more votes?

Til Nex'time............



Friday, November 14, 2008

This'n'That; November 14th [Economy; Politics]

Is There Any Direction BUT DOWN? Recent reports indicate that first-time unemployment filings rose to 516,000. This number has pushed the unemployment rate to 6.5%. Unemployment is not expected to decline until the estimated peak rate of 9.0% is reached sometime in 2010. Maybe It's Time To Return To The "Misery Index" The "Misery Index" is an economic indicator created in the late 1960s by Arthur Okun, an economic advisor to President Johnson. The index is determined by adding the unemployment rate and the inflation rate. It assumed that both a higher rate of unemployment or a worsening of inflation both create economic and social costs of the [or any] country. So, to determine the current "Misery Index" we must add: The unemployment rate: 6.5% The inflation rate: 4.94% ---------- " Misery Index" 11.44 An unintended indicator: Some economists contend that the components of the "Misery Index" drive the crime rate to a dregree. They've found that the "Misery Index" and the crime rate correlate strongly and that the "Misery Index" seems to lead the crime rate by a year or so. I found a chart that ranks all the Presidents since World War II, with the lowest rank indicating the lowest average "Misery Ranking:" ** #1 Dwight Eisenhower [1953-1960] 6.26 #2 Lyndon Johnson [1963-1968] 6.78 #3 John Kennedy [1961-1962] 7.27 #4 William Clinton [1993-2000] 7.80 #5 Harry Truman [1948-1952] 7.87 #6 George Bush [2001-2005] 7.98 #7 Richard Nixon [1969-1973] 9.98 #8 George H.W. Bush [1989-1992] 10.68 #9 Ronald Reagan [1981-1988] 12.19 #10 Gerald Ford [1974-1976] 15.93 #11 James Carter [1977-1980] 16.27 Obamanyms [One can't understand the game without a playbook] OBAMAPHORIA: A worldwide euphoria that spread over his supporters. OBAMANATION: Expressed by evangelicals and other conservatives who opposed many of his stances. OBAMARAMA: The Inauguration Day celebrations. OBAMANOS: "Let's go" among his fans in Mexico. OBAMATOPIA: The political paradise supporters expect him to usher in late on the afternoon of January 20th. OBAMALUJAH: Exultation shouted by his fans. OBAMATRONS: The "policy wonks" in his White House. OBAMASCOPE: Media scrutiny of the new leader. OBAMANATOR: Hollywood nickname for the new leader. OBAMALICIOUS: Term used by supporters who like his looks. OBAMALOHA: Goodbye from his birthplace, Hawaii. Oh-BAMA: Joyful exclamation. OBAMERIKA: Headline from the Croatian paper; Slobodna Dalmacija. BARACKSTAR: He's the "Mick Jagger" of politics. What PEBO Is Up Against PEBO is inheriting the ongoing economic crisis and a two-front war. Lest we forget biden's forecast of PEBO test by crisis!! He started rolling back his "pie-in-the-sky" promises during his election night acceptance speech. "Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even in one term." Research by Harold Holzer, author of Lincoln, President-Elect, indicates that 'the most successful transformative presidencies were patient between the election and the inauguration.' Here We Go..... Next week the congress returns. They will meet to finish remaining business before the 110th Congress. In September, the House passed a $57 billion stimulus package which was to focus primarily on infrastructure projects. The previous stimulus was $150 billion; the one that sent checks to American Taxpayers. The infrastructure stimulus package should have a net positive effect on the economy. A major problem with this action is that it requires MORE DEFICIT SPENDING. ***As of November 11, 2008, then National Debt is $10.6 TRILLION!! What most taxpayers don't know is that the THIRD LARGEST EXPENSE in the federal budget is the interest paid on the National Debt [2008=$412 billion]!! The LARGEST SINGLE ITEM in the budget is social spending; welfare, food stamps, etc. "For society as a whole, nothing comes as a 'right' to which we are 'entitled.' Even bare subsistence has to be produced.... The only way anyone can have a right to something that has to be produced is to force someone else to produce it.... The more things are provided as 'rights,' the less the recipients have to work and the more the providers have to carry the load." ............................Dr Thomas Sewell, economist, columnist for Forbes Magazine. EVERY YEAR SINCE 1969, Congress has spent more money than it's income!! Even when governmentofficials say they have a surplus, they still SPEND MORE THAN THEY TAKE IN!! We pay interest on a very large debt. "A politician cannot spend one dime on any spending project without first taking that dime from the person who earned it. So, when a politician votes for a spending bill he is saying that he believes the government should spend that particular dollar rather than the individual who worked for it." ...............................................Neal Boortz, national talkshow host, WSB-Atlanta. "There is no such thing as government money-ONLY TAXPAYER MONEY." .............................William Weld, Former Governor of Massachusetts. Til Nex'time....................



Sunday, November 9, 2008

This'n'That; November 11th[Vets;Health;politics;stocks]

Veteran's Day, 2008 I have my flag[s] out-Do you? We fly the American Flag EVERYDAY. On three holidays, we add U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army flags to the front porch collection. Those holidays are Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day and Veteran's Day [Your grandparents and other ol' duffers know Veteran's Day as Armistace Day-the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month {1918}]. The Kind Of Leadership America Needs!! If you're thinking I'm referring to PEBO, you're mistaken!! The information below came to me via one of those "forward-this-to-everybody" emails. So far as I know, it's a factual email. Here it is, verbatim: Prime Minister John Howard-Australia Muslims who want to live under Islamic Sharia law were told on Wednesday to get out of Australia, as the government targeted radicals in a bid to head off potential terror attacks. Separately, Howard angered some Australian Muslims on Wednesday by saying he supported spy agencies monitoring the nation's mosques. Quote: "IMMIGRANTS, NOT AUSTRALIANS, MUST ADAPT. Take It Or Leave It. I am tired of this nation worrying about whether we are offending some individual or their culture. Since the terrorist attacks on Bali, we have experienced a surge in patriotism by the majority of Australians." "This culture has been developed over two centuries of struggles, trials and victories by millions of men and women who have sought freedom." "We speak mainly ENGLISH, not Spanish, Lebanese, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Russian or any other language. Therefore, if you wish to become part of our society.... Learn the language!" "Most Australians believe in God. This is not some Christian, right wing political push, but a fact, because Christian men and women, on Christian principles, founded this nation, and this is clearly documented. It is certainly appropriate to display it on the walls of our schools. If God offends you, then I suggest you consider another part of the world as your new home, because God is part of our culture." "We will accept your beliefs and will not question why. All we ask is that you accept ours and live in harmony and peaceful enjoyment with us." "This is OUR COUNTRY, OUR LAND, and OUR LIFESTYLE, and we will allow you every opportunity to enjoy all this. But once you are done complaining, whining, and griping about Our Flag, Our Pledge, Our Christian beliefs, or Our Way of Life, I highly encourage you take advantage of one other great Australian freedom, THE RIGHT TO LEAVE!" "If you aren't happy here then LEAVE. We didn't force you to come here. You asked to be here. So accept the country YOU accepted." "Maybe if we circulate this amongst ourselves, American and Canadian citizens will find the backbone to start speaking and voicing the same truths." PEBO take note: Rather than raising the already high percentage of the federal largess that goes to those who refuse to be contributing members of society, you need an attitude adjustment!! Your administration would far better serve the economy and the country as a whole if you developed the level of testicular fortitude that Australian PM John Howard has!!! Dismal Market Results In my entry [T'n'T] of 11/03, I mentioned several stocks that might be a part of one's "watchlist." These stocks have continued to fall in price and bear watching, but with further patience: SIRI;[11/03>>11/07] $.338>>$.260; GM $5.79>>$3.36; DVD $2.14>>$2.00; TRK 15.95>>14.84; ISCA 31.39>>$28.65. [ISCA- Motley Fool is touting this stock as a "must own" due to it's intellectual property holdings] One of our family's portfolios has investments in KFN, Q and DFR. Each of these stocks were purchased with their dividend rates in mind. KFN: KKR Financial Holdings, LLC. Yup, these guys are Kolberg, Kravits and Roberts..... who were involved in some of the largest take-overs/buy-outs of the '80s and '90s!! This stock closed last Friday @$3.69, with a dividend of $1.60 [43+%]. Q: Qwest Communications International, Inc. They provide voice, data, Internet and video service in the United States. The corporation operates in three segments: Wireline Services, Wireless Services and Other Services. This stock closed last Friday @$2.98 with a dividend of $0.32 [10.7%]. DFR: Deerfield Capital Corp. This company started out life as a REIT [Real Estate Investment Trust]. They have since changed their charter to that of a "C" Corporation. This stock closed last Friday @$3.17 with a dividend of $3.40 [107.3%]. ***With the stock market in a state of flux to put it mildly, the exorbitant dividends and rates of return CAN NOT HOLD!!! For one thing, the companies couldn't afford the payouts to maintain the rates [KFN-43+%; DFR-107%]. If these stocks continue in freefall, their return rates will continue to rise. At some point the companies involved will readjust the rates to reflect their profitibility and investments.

A Hint Of PEBO's Direction

Some advocacy groups have been thwarted during the last 12-14 years. They now have a President they think will look kindly on their list of socialist legislative priorities. In the following categories, their wishlist includes:


1. Eliminate sentencing disparity that is harsher on crack cocaine than powder cocaine.

2. Expand alternatives to incarceration.

3. Extend federal voting rights to people released from prison.

4. Restore welfare and food stamp eligibility to people with drug felony convictions.


1. Outlaw workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

2. Epand hate-crimes laws to cover violence motivated by anti-gay bias.

3. Modify immigration laws to accommodate same-sex partners from other nations.

4. Repeal "don't ask, don't tell" policy that bars gays from serving openly in the military.


1. Close the gender wage gap and increase minimum wage.

2. Enable more workers to benefit from paid sick days and family/medical leave.

3. Ratify CEDAW [Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women], the United Nations treaty to end sex discrimination.


1. Expand access to birth control and family planning.

2. Eliminate federal support for abstinence-only sex education and support comprehensive programs that include teaching about contraception.

3. Limit or overturn policies that interfere with a woman's right to have an abortion.


1. Halt or cut back on workplace raids tareting illegal-immigrant workers.

2. Enact comprehensive immigration reform that provides illegal immigrants with options other than deportation.

The Chia Pet Ain't Just For The Window Sill Anymore

Research has revealed that more than two-thirds of all deaths in the United States are diet related. More than half of all deaths are caused by coronary occlusion, blocage of blood flow to the heart/brain. 97% of all coronary occlusion could be eliminated by a vegetarian diet. In "Advances in Cancer Research,**" researchers have concluded "At present, we have overwhelming evidence....[that] none of the risk factors for cancer is... more significant than diet and nutrition." This brings up a possible "super" food, chia seeds [called 'The Ancient Food of the Future']. Chia seed, once valued so highly it was used as currency, is familiar to most as the seeds used in the Chia Pet[tm] clay animals. The Chia seed was used for centures as a staple food by the indigenous peoples of the American southwest, Mexico and Central America. It's use as a high-energy and endurance food has been recorded as far back as the ancient Aztecs. Southwestern indians would RUN from the Colorado River to the California coast on trading missions. Their only nourishment on the trip was chia seeds. Carbohydrates are the fuel for energy in the human body. Prolonging their conversion into sugar stabilizes metabolic changes, diminishing the surges of highs and lows, creating a greater duration in the fueling effects. Mixing appropriate measures of chia seeds and water produces a semi-solid gelatin-the result of mixing the seed's soluable fiber with the water. One of the exceptional qualities of the Chia seed is it's ability to absorb 12 times it's weight in water. This ability allows the body to more efficiently regulate the absorption of nutrients and the dispersion of fluid. Chia seed may be used inconjunction with almost any diet your doctor or nutritionist feels is necessary for your diet. There's LOTS MORE information in the original article I found; listed below:

**Advances in Cancer Research: A series of books highlighting on-going cancer research and research results. At latest count-100 volumes.

Important URLs:

Cited article:

Newspaper article:

Retail sources for seeds: ; ; [this one seems to be the cheapest source]

Til Nex'time...............



Friday, November 7, 2008

This'n'That; November 8th[PEBO;Politics;Bdr Security]

Hittin' The Floor Arunnin' Well, I guess that's whatcha gotta do if yer gonna convince the right-minded Americans that socialism or marxism will be the best course FOR EVERYONE!!! PEBO started the website: Through this site, PEBO is soliciting "your story," to which I replied: I have never been so dispirited, so disheartened as I was on Election Night. Ta tellya the truth, this was one of those "hold-your-nose-and-pull-the-lever" elections; there ain't a dime's wortha difference between you and your opponent. The real breath of fresh air in the campaign was Sarah Palin!!! See how she's being trashed by HER OWN PARTY-kinda reminds ya of the "Slick Willie" years, don'it?? ........and maybe, given all the Clinton Lackeys you hired for the transition team.... Ya might wanna watch yer back......!! I fully intend to "hold your feet to the fire," at every opportunity........... Enjoy............... The same website asks me to "share my vision" which I fully intend to do in the near future.... Friday's PEBO Speech Anybody see it? I didn't, but I saw the fluffy media presentation of it-both on TV Friday evening and in the Saturday Demogogue and Comical. Was it just me or did anyone else see the display of arrogance? Has the Oval Office been renamed? What's up with this "Office of the President-Elect??????" Where was the 'show' broadcast from, a campaign office, somewhere? This guy's makin' it real tough for me to show the person even a modicum of respect!! When Will We Know? Is there a point in time when the lingering campaign fluff be vacuumed away and we'll finally learn how PEBO intends to govern? We still have no definitive direction for the "ship of state." What about the economy? What about foreign affairs? What about border enforcement? What about illegal immigration? What about unemployment? What about the federal deficit? What about the trade deficit? What about future "bail-outs?" Speaking Of Border Enforcement..... Is border enforcement a part of Homeland Security? Apparently not!! Back in July, 2007, Republican Senators were attempting to add border enforcement provisions to the Homeland Security funding legislation. This appalled the Democrat majority. With Senator Obama sitting in for Senator Robert Byrd as President Pro Tem, Senator Harry Reid asked for a ruling on the germaneness of the [border enforcement] amendment. Their discourse [verbatim]: Reid: We have to have a ruling here first. Obama: The chair is not aware of an arguably legislative provision in the House bill, HR 2638 [the homeland security funding bill], to which Amendment number 2412 offered by the Senator from South Carolina [the border security funding amendment] could conceivably be germane. Judd Gregg: So the amendment is germane? Obama: No, that the chair does not believe that the defense of germaneness is appropriately placed at this time. The Senator who has become PEBO sees no connection between border security and homeland security? Again, apparently not!! On March 13, 2008, Obama again voted: against a funding increase for border security, against a guarantee of 700 miles of fencing, against placing 6,000 National Guardsmen on the border, against reimbursing state and local law enforcement for their border enforcement expenses. [These measures were contained in the "Sessions Amendment" to S CON RES 70.] Is not, on and after January 20, 2009, one of his foremost responsibilities the protection of the American people and their property? If biden's prediction comes to fruition, the organization that intends to test PEBO's resolve MUST BE DETECTED AND NEUTRALIZED!! Til Nex'time.............



Thursday, November 6, 2008

This'n'That; November 7th[Stocks;401-k;Wlth Re-dist]

Stock Ownership When Ronald Reagan was elected, less than 20% of the voters owned individual stocks. When George Bush was re-elected over two-thirds of the voters were stock holders. PEBO Answer More Correct Than We Realized When "Joe the Plumber" asked Obama about his tax proposals, the candidate revealed that he was in favor of "redristribution of wealth." PEBO now intends to have an active hand in Congressional fiscal policy, even before he takes over the reins of government. He has expressed his desires for another stimulus and what that package should look like. PEBO wants the package to total at least $175 Billion. The spending should be on roads, bridges and aid to financially strapped states. e also wants a rebate of $500 for individuals, $1,000 for families and a new $3,000 credit for employers for each new job created. Statistics show that each new job costs $20-35,000 to create !!! Lotsa fallacies in this latest PEBO proposal: The previous rebate to taxpayers didn't stimulate the economy as expected. Most rebate money ended up in savings; the only "stimulating" funds were used to pay down credit card debt, not spent at Walmart. Any rebate, by definition [to return a portion of a sum paid] indicates that the American taxpayer is overtaxed/the product is over-priced !!! The far better action is a tax cut involving ALL TAXPAYERS. The previous rebate was paid to practically anyone who had earned income, even those who are partial WELFARE RATS. These rebates can be equated to the restaurant that forces it's wait-staff to pool their tips. The staff puts their daily tips "into a jug" and the total is split evenly by the whole staff at the end of the week. Both tip-pooling and rebates reward poor service/ behavior/planning. The PEBO proposed stinulus package does very little beyond rewarding poor performance/planning. The states that will qualify for aid are those whose fiscal policies allow them to spend themselves into a hole and wait for someone to bail them out, WITH SOMEONE ELSE'S MONEY !!! Speaking Of "Redistribution Of Wealth," Are 401-k Accounts In Peril ? Looks to me like the new adminitration and the Democrat controlled Congress are gonna turn left into socialism. Americans have about $3 TRILLION invested in individual 401-k accounts. Deposits to these accounts generate $80 Billion in tax breaks via pre-tax dollars. George Miller, D-Ca [Chairman, House Education and Labor Committee] and Jim McDermott, D-Wa [Chairman, Subcommittee on Income Security and Family Support] are looking into redirecting those tax breaks into a new system of guaranteed retirement accounts to which ALL workers would be OBLIGED to contribute [Isn't this what Social Security is ??]. Recently a House Democrat Subcommittee listened to Teresa Ghilarducci [Professor, New School of Social Research] expound on her idea to elimimate the preferential tax treatment of 401-k's. She wants the government to put ALL funds from 401-k accounts into government created "guaranteed retirement accounts." Each worker would have his/her own guaranteed account. The government would deposit $600 [indexed to inflation] annually into each account. Each worker could deposit up to 5% of earned income per year. The government would pay a DISMAL 3% annual return. I'm sure that when the socialists confiscate the funds from your 401-k, you'll not get your full value. With "redistribution of wealth" there'll probably be a formula that will give the greater portion of YOUR FUNDS to those slugs who have less or no money in their retirement accounts. GAWD !!! Look at the horrible financial condition of the Social Security system.... and the government thiks it can do better with these newly created retirement accounts ? BULLSHIT [oops.... I meant bovine fecal matter, honest] !!! Foreign Precedent For Stealing Retirement Funds A socialist government has no greater destructive affect on it's workers, nor greater control over them, than to steal their retirement savings. The Argentinian government recently announced that they would propose that their Congress nationalize the Pension and Retirement Plan Administration [similar to US' mutual funds]. The plan administration manages millions of Argentinians' retirement funds which under the proposal, would go to the government. I suspect the primary reason for the proposal is a short-term cash infusion to the federal treasury. Some PEBO Transition Team Members Some names mentioned are "The Sage of Omaha-Warren Buffet, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm, former Clinton Administration lackies, Robert Reich, Robert Rubin, Lawrence Summers Mister Buffett is a legend in the world of investment and money management. He has an uncanny intuition for finding value investments and highly successful financial and personnel managers. Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm is a suspect choice at best. When Ms Granholm took office in January, 2003, the state's unemployment rate was 6.7%. Today the estimated state unemployment rate is 8.7%. Mr Reich first became acquainted with "Slick Willie" when they both were Rhodes Scholars. After graduation from Yale Law, he became the ass't solicitor general in the Justice Department, serving from 1974-76. Other positions he's held: Federal Trade Commission, 1976-81; Director of Policy Planning. Kennedy School of Government, 1981-92; Professor Secretary of Labor, 1993-96; He's considered by many to be a neoliberal [a blending of traditional liberal concerns for social justive with an emphasis on economic growth]. This mindset should put him in good sted with PEBO; socialism+economic savvy. The other Clinton lackey, Mr Rubin, was a major supporter of legislation to break down the barriers between banking, insurance and securities. This bill, the very same that PEBO attacked during the campaign, is entitled: Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, BreakingDown Walls Between Banking, Insurance, And Securities Firms Erected By Depression-Era Glass-Steagall Act [WHEW!!! Thatsa mouthful!!]. Aside from Mr Rubin, several PEBO advisors supported this bill: ^^Senator Joe Biden-VP Elect ^^Lawrence Summers [Clinton Treasury Sec'y; 1999-2001]-PEBO Economic Advisor. Secretary Summers, welcoming observers of the bill signing ceremony: "Let me welcome you all here today for the signing of this historic legislation. With this bill, the American financial system takes a major step forward towards the 21st century, on that will benefit American consumers, business, and the national economy for many years to come." ^^Gene Sperling [Deputy Dir., National Economic Council-1993-96; Dir., National Economic Council-1996-2000]-PEBO Economic Advisor. Mr Sperling also served as Hillary Clinton's Economic Advisor. Can anyone see the hypocrisy here? PEBO has enlisted the aid of the same minds that served "Slick Willie's" interests in crafting and promoting the very bill that led to the current economic "meltdown!!!" Buffalo Bills Payroll It's been some time since I was last a Bills fan. I left the fold during the Jim Kelley era. I just got sick of seeing Kelley on the Monday Evening News Shows. Each time the Bills won-it was all about Kelley, how he had accomplished the victory almost single-handedly. When the Bills lost-there's was practically no end to those players who failed to perform, in Kelley's opinion. This season I've risen in devotion to that of an apathetic fan. I can take'em or leave'em, watching if the game isn't blacked out-if it is... whatta hey...... The salary figures of these few players include the entirety of any and all bonus monies, no matter what year they have been or will be, paid: Evans, Lee Wide Receiver $11,818,812 Schobel, Aaron Defensive End $7,156,889 McKelvin, Leodis Corner Back $6,888,750 Those are the top three paid players. The list is in neumerical-dollar amount order and contains 56 active players. One has to go w-a-y down the list to get to the quarterbacks [Losman-#13; Edwards-#35; Baker-#56] . Losman, Jonathan Paul Qtrback $3,330,480 Edwards, Trent Qtrback $624,440 Baker, Matt Qtrback $297,520 NY Mayor To Fit Right In With "Redistribution Of Wealth" Bloomberg, in an attempt to save money is redistributing wealth from the city's residents and commuters to the city's coffers. He's warned of tax hikes, eliminating jobs and considering eliminating two pieces of property tax relief for homeowners. Some of the fees increased: Red Carpet Events. They cause hassles that include taking over sidewalks, laying down the carpet, blocking off a media area, connecting a power generator and pitching a tent outside. Depending on the size of the event, the city charges up to $5,000. The highest fee, for an event where thousands of people are expected on the street, would now be $24,000. City Hall also plans to increase oversize truck permits from $25 to $35. Street parking will increase in parts of Manhattan, south of 60th Street. Currently, most meters charge $1 per hour. This will increase to $2 per hour. Til Nex'time.........



This'n'That; November 6th[PEBO;Politics;Cabinet]

Let's Clear The Air On The Presidency In October, 1998, Toni Morrison, a Nobel Laureate, pronounced Bill "Slick Willie" Clinton the nation's First Black President!! In that New Yorker magazine article Ms Morrison said "Clinton displays almost every trope of blackness; single4-parent household, born poor, working-class, saxophone-playing, McDonald's-and-junk-food-loving boy from Arkansas. The Congressional Black Caucus [CBC], as well as other Clinton supporters, adopted this opinion. Until the astute Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid undertake to introduce and pass a Congressional proclaimation, PEBO will have to settle for "number-two" status. Cabinet/Executive Branch Vacancies PEBO has quite a job ahead.... only a SMALL PART will be filling fifteen Cabinet positions as well as eight 'first-tier' positions in the Executive Branch. This is the bare minimum to install a functioning government. The Cabinet positions are: ***Secretary of State ***Secretary of the Treasury ***Secretary of Defense ***Attorney General ***Secretary of the Interior ***Secretary of Agriculture ***Secretary of Commerce ***Secretary of Labor ***Secretary of Health and Human Services ***Secretary of Housing and Urban Destruction ***Secretary of Transportation ***Secretary of Education ***Secretary of Veterans Affairs ***Secretary of Homeland Security The eight 'first-tier' Executive Branch positions are: ***White House Chief of Staff [BO choice: Rahm Emanuel; US Rep from Ill's 5th Congr District] ***Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency ***Director of the Office of Management and Budget ***Director of the National Drug Control Policy ***United States Trade Representative ***Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ***Commissioner of the Social Security Administration ***Director of National Intelligence Whew.........!! That's a lot of fresh, intelligent, compassion minds to come up with "on short notice!!" Many times in the past, presidents and other high officials have proposed new cabinet posts such as... >>Department of Public Welfare [by President Warren G. Harding] >>Department of Social Welfare [by President Franklin D. Roosevelt] >>Department of Community Development [by President Richard Nixon] >>Department of International Trade [by The Heritage Foundation] Quite possibly PEBO might want to broaden Cabinet level positions to more reflect the country he'll be governing: ^^Department of Religious Conversion [a possible nominee might be the Rev Jerimiah Wright] ^^Department of Socialism [this position would be more-than-adequately fill by Bill Ayers] ^^Department of Community Organization [how about Steve Kest, Executive Director-ACORN] PEBO has another, probably MORE IMPORTANT, decision to make. This decision HAS TO BE MADE prior to the official Inauguration Ceremony on January 20th, 2009. For official public assemblies where all administration members are expected to attend, the president-elect must select one cabinet member to be the "designated survivor." The selected individual is held at a secure, undisclosed, location in case the necessity arises that a new government must be formed. Here's were I was going to suggest the selection of biden to be the "designated survivor." NOTTA GOOD IDEA!! Just imagine the calamity if he became President!! His usual gaffs would take on international implicatons.... offending everyone on the planet!! His dismal statistics on foreign policy decisions..... a reported 95% failure rating!! Til Nex'time...........



Wednesday, November 5, 2008

This'n'That, November 5th[Election;PEBO;OOIDA]

My Guy Didn't Win Actually, my guy wasn't even in the race!! My view of this election-one of those "hold-yer-nose-and-pull-the-lever" contests. I thought and still think, neither candidate was up to or even prepared for the job. Now the "o-bomb-a" must go away; I intend to respect the office if not the man. I think I'll call the president-elect P[resident] E[lect] B[arack] O[bama], thus PEBO. New Respect For The Top Job In previous elections, either my guy won or I was too busy with family crap to be concerned with the idiosyncrasies of the formulation of a new government. PEBO was NOT MY FIRST CHOICE and for that reason, I'm probably taking a closer look and giving more thought to the upcoming administration. It's gonna be "one heluva job" to put together a cabinet and executive branch that can function with America's needs, wants and desires foremost in their minds and actions. Walking into a world economy in ruin, two on-going wars, the rise os suspected Russian domination in eastern Europe just to name a few of the problems to be considered while putting together the best minds for advice and opinion. Yee-Haa For One Trucking Company Any of you folks that are/were truckers or other travelers, know that Mount Vernon, Ill., is near the intersection of I-57 and I-64 and home of several large truck stops. Well, in September, '008, the City of Mount Vernon approved the addition of a city tax of 2-cents/gallon [diesel only] in addition to all other fuel taxes. The city also has a 1-percent restaurant/beverage Tax and a 2-percent telecommunications tax. David Schnautz, the General Manager for Clark Freight Lines, Inc., Pasadena, Tx., notified 200+ company and leased drivers not to fuel in Mount Vernon, Ill. Congrats to Mr Schnautz for this decision!! It's the same reason I rarely fueled in New York State unless necessary, then only enough to get me to a state line. Til Nex'time...............



Tuesday, November 4, 2008

This'n'That; November 4th[Local Elections]

I Voted-Did You? I left the house at 5:30 this morning. The "missus" works early, so we went to be some of the first in line. We were numbers 10 and 11 in the line. It kinda went downhill from there.... See the "e-mail" below that I sent to the Commissioner of Elections, Monroe County, Rochester, N.Y. Peter M. Quinn Thomas F. Ferrarese Monroe County [N.Y.] Commissioner[s] of Elections Sirs: In what may well become one of the most important elections of the Twenty-First Century, I witnessed unconscionable performance by members of your staff. Initially, our polling place had changed so over the weekend, my wife and I attempted to go to the address listed to ensure we'd find it on Election Day with no trouble. NOT SO !!! We cruised up and down Goodman Street checking building numbers. We saw nearly all the numbers EXCEPT 836 North Goodman. After 4 or 5 attempts we gave up and went home to "Google" the address. Guess what popped up ? A boarded-up house and the back of a strip mall !!! On Monday, my wife called the Election Offices to get more specific directions. Think ANYONE in the office could tell her anything ? You're right-not a soul had a clue as to the location !!! Your office is to be commended for hiding our polling place so well. We discovered it though, tucked well out o sight in the "Goodman Plaza." The real clincher here, sirs, is that we arrved at the polling place at 5:50AM, a full ten minutes before the scheduled opening time. Care to hazard a guess as to when the doors FINALLY OPENED ? You're wrong this time.............. The first person walked into the building at 6:43AM !!! The "unconscionable" portion of this scenario is that the on-site staff was completely unprepared !!! We watched while the staff stood around chatting an presumabily discussing what should be done. Apparently they arrived at a concensus. They scurried around the room hanging th reqired signs and maps; set up and arranged tables and chairs and then waited for the arrival of SOMEONE WHO HAD KEYS TO THE VOTING MACHINE !!! [Does the concept "pre-planning" jog any thoughts here ?] I watched four folks leave the line, having to go to work. Their "window of opportunity" had closed to vote eary in the day, thus avoiding the usual afternoon crush of voters. Gentlemen, is there some future election at which the voting public can expect at least MINIMUM PERFORMANCE from your office? ME Rochester, N.Y. Til Nex'time............



Monday, November 3, 2008

This'n'That, November 3rd[Stocks;Mutual Funds]

Well, Tomorrow Is The Big Day As they say in Chicago [and adopted by ACORN]: "Vote early-Vote OFTEN!!! Retirement Funds As with almost everyone else, my IRA is down, WAY DOWN!! Since the first of the year, mine has dropped 47%!! Dropped so far that I'm considering changing fund families. The account is currently in a family that I've dealt with for probably twenty years. I'm considering changing to another family that I've previously dealt with, although not for as long nor with as much money. The Stock Market And Stocks My active [non-retirement] stock account is down about 65%. I don't expect a very quick recovery so I'm planning on selling the bulk of the losers prior to December 31st. The sale[s] will generate a deduction from my taxable earnings. I have some that the proceeds of a sale WILL NOT cover the cost of the transaction!! These I'll hold, only because it would be a net expense to sell them. At my on-line trading site, I've established several "watch lists." Each list is separated by objective, like dividend paying, penny stocks, depressed blue chips. Anyone who knows me very well has heard about my greatest investing coup; that of buying Siris Satellite Radio [SIRI] @ $0.60 and selling @ $7.75, a nearly 1,300% gain!! Well, SIRI has caught my eye once again. Last Friday it closed at $0.338. Siris Satellite Radio recently merged with XM Satellite Radio, making the new company [SIRI] THE ONLY PROVIDER of satellite radio informtion and entertainment. One can set a vehicle satellite radio to a particular channel and drive from "beach-to-beach" and "border-to-border" and NEVER LOSE THE SIGNAL!! I guess the best definition of my investing philosophy is that I'm a "purchase-price driven investor." As a long-haul trucker, I always had XM Radio in my trucks, but invested in Siris due to the stock's price. At the time of my sixty-cent purchase, XM stock was in the 12-dollar range. In the "Blue Chip" sector, one I'm watching is General Motors [GM]. Last Friday GM closed at $5.79. Just about a year ago [11/01/07] the stock closed at $38.80. Given recent activities involving Chrysler, it's hard to tell how long GM will take to return to a positive financial path. Nevertheless, GM is still considered a blue chip stock and as such, should be considered a sound investment. Another automotive stock to consider is Ford Motor Co [F]. Last Friday F closed at $2.19. A year before [11/05/07] it closed at $8.99. Five years ago, Ford was in the $15.50 range. Ford seems to have a lot of room for advancement once the general economy sorts itself out. As a sometime NASCAR fan, I'm continually searching for racetrack and race team stocks. NASCAR itself, is what's called a "closely-held" corporation. The France family and possibly a few close friends own all the stock in the organization. I suspect that there's one of those "sell it to me, first" agreements amongst the current stockholders. NEVER do shares of NASCAR come available to "commoners" like you and me. Sofar, I've been able to find the following three racetrack stocks. Dover Motorsports, Inc [DVD] has racing venues in Dover, Del., Memphis, Tn., Nashville, Tn., and St Louis, Mo. Last Friday DVD closed at $2.14. Earlier this year [01/29/08], DVD closed at $7.68. DVD pays a quarterly dividend [annual rate: 2.8%]. Speedway Motorsports, Inc [TRK], closed last Friday at $15.95. A year ago [11/06/07], it closed at $38.77. TRK pays an annual dividend at the rate of 2.13%. International Speedway Corp [ISCA] closed last Friday at $31.39; a year ago [11/13/07] at $45.31. ISCA pays an annual dividend at the [dismal] rate of 0.38%. Remember: Due Diligence!! Ji cuz I like a stock certainly don't make it a good investment!! One has to do his/her due diligence, researcing all the "nooks and crannies" to find any and all information concerning an interesting stock. Some metrics the investor should know and search out during the research process are: ***Net Profit Margin [net pretax profit divided by revenue]: The bottom line-the amount the company has left over after every other expense is taken out. ***Gross Profit Margin [gross profit divided by revenue]: It's the company's revenue minus what it costs to make the product/produce the service. ***EBITDA Margin [EBITA divided by revenue]: This is used by companies as a shorthand measure of cash flow. EBITDA is Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, Amortization. ***Return on Equity [net income divided by total equity]: The return investors [shareholders] are realizing on their investment. ***Return On Assets [net income divided by total assets]: The net income generated for each dollar of assets. Especially relevent for capital-intensive industries, like manufacturing. ***Interest Coverate Ratio [EBITDA divided by interest expense]: This rougly shows how easily a company can repay it's debts. ***Debt To Equity Ratio [total liabilities divided by total equity]: What the company owes compared with what it owns. ***Inventory Days [inventory divided by cost of goods sold, multiplied by 365]: The amount of time it takes to convert inventory into sales. ***Accounts Payable Days [accouts payable divided by the cost of goods sold, multiplied by 365]: The average number of days a company takes to pay it's bills. ***Accounts Receivable Days [accouts receivable divided by sales, multiplied by 365]: The aerage number of days a company's customers take to pay them. ***Current Ratio [total current assets divided by total current liabilities]: The amount of cash [or assets easily converted to cash] on hand. ***Quick Ratio [cash+accounts receivable divided by total current liabilities]: Similar to the "current ratio," this is a good measure of a company's short-term cash position. The Jeep Compass Has anyone driven one of these? We got rear-ended in our 2007 Honda Accord a coupla weeks ago. The car "was admitted" into the repair shop this morning. The other guy's insurance provided for a rental car. We were unlucky enough to get a 2009 Jeep Compass. Man, I DO NOT LIKE this vehicle!! It has an automatic transmission [naturally!!] and the way it shifts is kinda funky. Ya hafta push the floor-mounted shift lever sideways to advance "up" the drive range; like from D-1 through D-6. G-O-O-F-Y!!!! If I was given one of these today, I'd sell/trade it "before the sun went down!!!" Til Nex-time........



Sunday, November 2, 2008

This'n'That; November 2nd[obama;Palin;Bail-out;Charity]

Palin Scammed Alaska Governor Sarah Palin spent six minutes speaking with someone she thought was French President Nicolas Sarkozy. The two discussed politics, the perils of hunting with Vice President Dick Cheney and Sarkozy's "beautiful wife." The call was made by a well-known Montreal comedy duo Parc-Antoine Audette and Sebastien Trudel. The two are notorious for prank calls to celebrities and heads-of-state. Bailout Stuff During the week ended Oct 31, the Treasury Department released $125 Billion to nine banks. ***Those nine banks [ticker symbol][how many $]: Bank of America.........................[BAC].....................................................$25Billion Citigroup....................................[C]..........................................................$25Billion JP Morgan Chase.......................[JPM].....................................................$25Billion Wells Fargo................................[WFC]....................................................$25Billion The Goldman Sachs Group........[GS]........................................................$10Billion Morgan Stanley.........................[MS]........................................................$10Billion Bank of New York.....................[BK]............................................................$2Billion State Street Bank......................[SST]...........................................................$2Billion This cash will buy taxpayers preferred shares in those banks and increase the banks' liquidity. The Bailout Promise: If the taxpayers provided the funds, the banks would resume lending, thawing a frozen credit market. The devil is in the details: The Treasury Department agreed to the loans with fairly weak strings attached. There was no actual requirement to lend the money provided by the feds and there are some weak restrictions on executive compensation. So far, the money is going to pay either bank dividends, satisfy old debt or to shore up the banks' bottom lines. NONE OF THESE will address the problem of frozen credit markets. Using nearly half of the funds to pay dividends to stockholders instead of fueling the credit markets, leaves the taxpayers on the "short end of the stick." Some [primarily] non-financial sector companies are lining up for Bailout funds. The automakers are claiming that they should be included due to their lending subsidiaries. They are arguing that because they have these financial subsidiaries, they are banks and thus should be included in the bailout. Bailing out ANYONE BUT bona fide banking institutions will create a dangerous precedent. The government will then be put in the position of picking-and-choosing what they consider winning versus losing industries/companies. As noted in the Weekly Wastebasket, an on-line publication of Taxpayers for Common Sense [ ], Wall Street needs to get off it's collective "dead ass and on it's dying feet [I paraphrase]" and get back to work.... the business of the American economy. Is His Word Reliable; Will He Take Care Of Us? Well,IS o-bomb-a's word reliable? Take for instance, his pledge of tax reduction for those making "less than [insert number here...]. This pie-in-the-sky promise initially started at [those incomes less than] $300,000. It was then changed in the following digression: ***o-bomb-a [his-own-majestic-self] reduced it to $200,000. ***The Dolt [that foreign affairs genius] reduced it to $150,000. ***NM Governor Bill Richardson reduced it to $120,000. I'll bet in reality, the reductions don't stop until they reach the $40-50,000 range. o-bomb-a would replicate that "Slick Willie" moment: " I worked as hard as I could on this tax problem, as hard as I ever have........" Early in "Slick's" first term, he not only raised taxes after making campaign promises not to, he MADE THE INCREASE RETROACTIVE, back to January First!!!!! The first president in history to do so!!!! Well, WILL o-bomb-a take care of us? With all this "spread-the-wealth-around" talk, will he really take care of us? If that's really the case; if all these campaign promises are to be believed, then why hasn't he undertaken the same caring and compassion with his own family? ***o-bomb-a has a brother George, living in a hut in Kenya. George has an annual income of just $12; that's three-cents a day!!! If o-bomb-a, who's promised to take care of us, practically cradle-to-grave, tossed George a fifty-dollar bill, George's annual income would increase 400 percent!!!!! ***o-bomb-a's aunt was recently found living in a Boston slum. This aunt, Zeituni Onyango, is in the U.S. illegally-having been denied asylum from her home country of Kenya. In 2007, Money Magazine estimated the o-bomb-a net worth at $1.3 MILLION. The o-bomb-a 2007 Federal tax return indicated a $4.3 MILLION income. Seems like o-bomb-a could "get off soma that greed" and take care of his own family first. What would it take...... maybe twenty grand a year??? That would be about .00047% of the family's 2007 income [$4,238,826]!!! These folks, the o-bomb-as as a family, are a "really giving, charitable" couple. Check this crap out..... Year.....Income.....Donations...percentage 2000.... 240,505..... 2,350 .........00.9% 2001 ....275,123 .......1,470 .........00.5% 2002 ...260,824....... 1,050........ 00.4% 2003 ...238,327....... 3,400 .........01.4% 2004 ...207,642 .......2,500 .........01.2% 2005 ...1.6Million ...77,315 .........04.7% 2006....983,826......60,307........06.1% [Reference: ] So............ for those seven years they earned a whopping $3,806,247. As charitable donations, they claimed a Federal deduction for the paltry sum of $148,392 [equalling just 00.04% of income !!!] Don't his compassion jis makeya feel warm and fuzzy all over ?!?!?! Til Nex'time......