Friday, March 27, 2009

I'm 38!

I took the RealAge test and the results aren't good. My real age is ten years older than my age number. Dr. Oz says I need a lot of work. I need to change my diet, health habits, exercise regimen, and relationships. Wow, I better get to work. I'm going to see what I can fix. I'll check back with the doc later in the year and see what he says about any changes I make.

Check your Real Age here.

(image from here)

You Want Funny?

Quick, what's the funniest show on tv? Absolutely correct, 30 Rock can't be beat. What? You're never home on Thursday nights at 9:30? Me neither. Go to The episodes are all there. Enjoy!
30 Rock

We're Ignorant and Outraged!

It's common sense that you don't let people make a decision on something they don't know about; especially when they're pissed off. But that's exactly what we did by allowing public opinion to determine what happened with the AIG bonuses.

The American public didn't know the whole story. The bonuses weren't "bonuses" in the sense that we think. Those guys were paid $1 for 2008. The "bonuses" were the only compensation they expected to receive for the year. But we told them to give it all back because we thought it was money on top of their regular pay.

It doesn't matter how we feel about AIG. If you were promised a paycheck at the end of the year, you should get it. They got bills too. Yea, I know, most people say to hell with rich people, let them suffer. But I want to know who in the witch hunt would work for free for a year cleaning up someone else's financial mess? Not many volunteers. Actually there is someone who has done it--the CEO of AIG, ED Liddy. He has no stock options and gets paid a $1 annual salary. He does not financially benefit from AIG at all. Funny how the angry pundits never mentioned that. And he gets death threats in the mail.

We should have let them fail. They made terrible bets a nd should have paid for them. But we didn't. We decided to keep them alive. So let's let them get back to good health. Demonizing them does nothing. Let's forget about the payments and get back to fixing the economy.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Obama is too big too fail

A few good sentences.

"Congress can't afford to not give Obama another chance to fix the economy," he wrote. "It would be like deciding, in the middle of World War II, that FDR's strategy wasn't working and he'd lost a lot of credibility—so we'll just have to lose the war. …On the issue of rescuing the economy, Obama is too big to fail."

From here.

Why Did I Waste My Time?

I went to the Career Services office to find out my personality profile. I had to watch a 15-minute video, and fill out a 20-minute survey. The result was that I am Intuitive and Logical.

Today I went to Typealyzer. You plug your blog's url in and it spits out your personality based on what it reads. One second later, the exact same result. It even describes the personality better than the career test.
The independent and problem-solving type. They are especially attuned to the demands of the moment are masters of responding to challenges that arise spontaneously. They generally prefer to think things out for themselves and often avoid inter-personal conflicts.

ISTP - The Mechanics
The Mechanics enjoy working together with other independent and highly skilled people and often like seek fun and action both in their work and personal life. They enjoy adventure and risk such as in driving race cars or working as policemen and firefighters.

Type in your blog's (or your favorite blogger's) address and check it out!

(In photo: Bruce Willis' new chick. I'm always happy when a good guy gets a new piece of tail. Click photo for more.)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Brawl Street

What happened to Jim Cramer last night? He went on the Jon Stewart Show and got eaten up. He did not need to take all that blame on himself. He let Stewart peg everything on him. Jon says "We're all snake-oil salesman here," Jim responds, "I'm not gonna disagree with that."

Yes, you can disagree with that. You honestly try to make a good show, don't you? You give advice based on what you think is best. That's not snake-oil. Its commentary. Snake-oil is claiming to have all the answers, knowing that your a fraud. Why would you let someone put that on you. Every night you tell your viewers that these are just your opinions, and that you might be wrong. You are right way more than you're wrong, and that's why people still trust you. They trust your encyclopedic knowledge of stocks. That's not snake-oil.

Stewart says, "It feels like there's a market that you all present to us, and you tell us our money is safe. And then there's this other market in the back room, where our 401ks are being used to finance dangerous, ethically dubious adventures. It's a game you know, and one that you pretend is not going on."

Your answer Mr. Cramer? "Yea, I believe we could be doing better. There's a lot of shenanigans. I'm tryin."

Wtf? No that is not correct, Jon. We did not know about the complexities of some of the trades that were going on. We still don't know exactly what happened behind closed doors. There are investigations going on right now about that. How could you say that "we knew? We did not know that AIG was in over its head. All we have is their financial statements and their word. If there was fraud it will be found out. But you can't blame that on us. Cramer looked like a fool. He made CNBC look like a bunch of moronic, doe-eyed cheerleaders.

Stewart flat-out called his antics bullshit; mentioning that in the 2006 clip he looked like a sober smart guy and on his show he's an idiot that says sell one day and then comes back the next day saying I should have told you to buy. Stewart added that CNBC wasn't to blame for not seeing the catastrophe but guilty for encouraging it, thus becoming one of the culprits. What does Cramer say to that? "Okay, maybe I'll try it your way."

If I was a CNBC producer I would've prayed for the feed to get cut. Cramer didn't fight. He didn't defend himself at all. They should've put Steve Liesman or Santelli on there. Cramer was too nice. He didn't have to eat all that humble pie.

CNBC cheers the market on. Yes. They're permanently bullish on America. Yes. And the Daily Show cheers on Obama. Fox news cheers on the republicans. So what responsibility does CNBC have to the nation? Deliver financial news. That's it. And they do that every day. Everyone cheered on the prosperity of the millennium.

"I know you want to make finance entertaining, but it's not a f***ing game." Does Cramer say anything to that? No. Jon continues, " shows me that you all know. You can draw a straight from (your comments about manipulating markets) to what Bear Sterns and AIG were doing." The idiot Cramer walks right into it and answers, "Don't you want a guy like me who've been in it, to show the shenanigans?"

Wrong answer, sir. The correct answer is, "We all know shady things happen in every industry. You cannot put what Bear did on me and the network because the knowledge of fraud doesn't mean that you are to blame when fraud happens. If that was the case, then we'd all be guilty for what Madoff did. We all know how a Ponzi scheme works. So if what your saying is right then we should've known that Madoff was going to bilk his investors. What you're saying is absolutely false."

"You knew what the banks were doing. Your whole network knew." Pause! Umm, excuse me, No we did not know what they were doing. Why does Cramer let him pin all that crap on him and the network.

"These guys were on a Sherman's march through their companies, financed by our 401ks, for short-term profit. They burned the house down with our money and walked away rich as hell. And you guys knew that that was going on." (Claps and applause)

Rich who? Rich where? Those guys are broke. People talk about the fatcats on Wall Street. There are no fatcats anymore. And, no, we didn't know it. There was no "it" to know. No one thought the house was going to burn down. What are you trying to say? That the evil CEOs purposely destroyed the economy, knowing full well all its implications? Are you insane?

Jim Cramer is a financial genius and he has dispensed a lot of knowledge about markets on his show. He is not about Wall Street, instead he defends the common man every night. He blasts CEOs that overstep their bounds all the time. Too bad he didn't show any of that last night.

Want more? Here's a great post from Businessweek. Jon Stewart Thrashes Cramer

Thursday, March 12, 2009

On The Up and Up

The bulls are cheering. It looks like the Dow will rise for three days in a row, making investors and traders hope for a real rally. The markets closed at a respectable $239.66 pop, I'm sure Larry Kudlow is on cloud nine now.

It'd be great if things are finally turning around. But for now it just looks like we got three days of good news reports. As long as Wall Street is taking cues from the day's headlines, we will keep seeing volatility.

The real test will be when bad news comes out. If Wall Street shrugs it off and keeps moving up, I will have more confidence that the rally is for real.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What to Watch

Documentary films take you deep into people's lives. They were the first form of reality tv. Sometimes they can be hard to find since they don't get big advertising budgets and lots of press coverage. is a library of documentaries that you can stream for free. There are a bunch of crazy anarchist-type pictures. But there are a few good ones in the mix.

My favorites:

Shut Up and Sing - Great documentary. I don't even like the Dixie Chicks and I loved it.

Control Room - The al Jazeera network and the Iraq War.

Fog of War - Robert McNamara discusses thoughts about Vietnam and his life. This movie will get you loving documentaries.

Why We Fight
- Get ready to have your mind rocked as to how the military machine works.

Monday, March 09, 2009

More to Discover

I feel like I rediscovered the internet in the past few days. I got in the routine of my favorite places and just kind of stayed there. There is so much out there. So I will be posting more links to interesting places I run into.

Here's one to start. It's a quick visual guide to the credit crisis.

Credit Crisis Visualized


Thinking of something to rent? Vicky Christina Barcelona won't disappoint. It's about two girls that spend a summer in Spain. Scarlett Johansson is good. Woody Allen directs it well. And Javier Bardem is the coolest m-fer on the planet in it.

I planned on posting the trailer, but it shows way too much. Am I the only one that's bothered by that? I'm thinking studios would be getting so many angry calls that they'd stop showing the entire movie before you sit down and watch it. This trailer has real important plot turns that spoil the story. I'm real glad I didn't hear anything about it before I watched it.

If it sounds dumb to you, the trailer won't change your mind. And if it sounds interesting, the trailer will make it worse.

You Gotta Take it

Rick Santelli went on a rant against bailouts for bad mortgages last week. He got a lot of flak for it. I agree with how mad he is about the whole thing, we should all be pissed. But we have no better option. We got to bend over and take it.

Santelli on CNBC

Two Kudos For the Obama Administration


President Obama signed an executive order overturning Bush's ban on federal funding for stem-cell research. It was long overdue. Kudos, sir.

Double Kudos

His fiscal policy is turning the corner and is starting to make some real sense. What I liked about Obama on the campaign trail is that he seemed open to others opinions when he thought they were right.

His social plans are a diversion from the real issues facing the country. But his plans to provide some real mortgage relief might give the housing market the boost that it is craving. That teemed with the Fed's actions in the banking sector and Treasury's work on the corporate finance front, we might actually be working towards making out of this mess.

We're tough on you guys, but you're pulling us through this and we'll support you along the way.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Movies I Like

Youtube has a new movies section. They have full feature films that you can stream. Most of them aren't that good. But I saw one shining light: Amandla. It's about the role music played in the struggle for South African liberation. Doesn't sound like fun? I know. But that movie is really inspiring to me, and it gives me the sense that I can do anything if I just keep fighting. Just watch the first ten minutes. If you like it keep going, if not, I won't be mad at ya.

Full movie

Friday, March 06, 2009

The Prez Needs Some Tough Parenting

A stimulus bill has passed already. But we can still debate the budget. I like Obama. I think he's good for the country's morale. But he is now America's precocious son. He has a bunch of ambitious goals, and we as the parents have to keep him grounded.

He says, "Can I get some money to save the economy?"
"We don't have any money."
"We can borrow it! Oh please?"
"If you think it'll help, here you go."
"Thanks! Ooh, I want to save health-care too!"
"Son, we can't afford that right now. Let's just do one thing at a time, junior."

We have to be realistic. Firm, and fair.

Obama pushes for Health-care overhaul

Good Articles Can Be Hard To Find

Good thing then that I got Google's Reader service. I get rss feeds from a bunch of sites. I can easily share the good ones with my free-thinkers and the world. Just check out the sidebar of this page. "