Thursday, December 30, 2010

We Survived 2010

Despite all the high paid pundits and bloviators, 2010 was NOT a national disaster. Roubini, Meredith Molotova and that ilk were wrong. The stock markets made good gains. The economy stopped going down. Unemployment stopped going up. Massive new defaults have NOT occurred. The corporate bond market rallied hugely. The commercial real estate market stabilized and has rallied some.

Not all is good.

Housing prices are bouncing along the ground: no rebound is in sight, but price levels are rather affordable so further large drops will likely be temporary foreclosure rinses.

Europe is still sorting out possible solutions ... and ignoring the obvious solution, viz. becoming a United States of Europe.

Farmers & miners are making fine profits after decades of suffering; and people are griping about that.

Congress continues to be a comedy show ... or is it a cage match? No serious debate occurs regarding what kind of nation we want to be and become.

Obama is playing in Hawaii; he's now had two years in office and has shown zero ideas or leadership.

The Republicans want to turn the financial and corporate Vikings loose to raid on all of us.

The Democrats wants to turn all of us into government employees.

Neither party talks about a vision - an eschaton - for America in the 21st century.

How can "reform" or "change" be discussed rationally without knowing the end point for our path? How can "reform" or "change" be discussed rationally without knowing where we are now?

Our "leaders" have lost their way. Is any Teddy Roosevelt or Franklin Roosevelt or Ronald Reagan on the horizon? Nope. Those people has visions of where they wanted to lead the nation; they had good understanding of what the problems were in their time.

I will give you two metaphors for a paradigm of what America need to do.

First, from John Bunyan's great book, Pilgrim's Progress. The pilgrim recognized the problems where he was and knew where he wanted to go, viz. to the great city of salvation. He struggled along a path with many, many traps and pitfalls and evildoers. This book was read by the great leaders who created and saved America: Franklin, Washington, Lincoln. Its allegory applies now.

Second, from science and the work of Richard Feynman (cf. the book, A Path Integral Approach to Quantum Mechanics or his seminal paper, Feynman, R. P. (1948). "The Space-Time Formulation of Nonrelativistic Quantum Mechanics". "Reviews of Modern Physics" 20: 367–387. A particle - ANY particle, with its beginning and end states set, combines all possible paths (and I do mean all - over all of space and time) to take the optimal path.

The metaphors here are definitive, spanning faith AND science: The US people - and especially its leaders - must study where we are and have vision where we want to be, and then choose the optimal path. We must combine epistemology - the study of knowledge - with ontology, the study of being - to find our path. True leadership does not come from the technocracy; it's not from technology. It's not from sloganeering. Good Leadership - the adjective is crucial - is really applied metaphysics: it applies knowledge of where we are and where we want to be in the future, then chooses the optimal path.

All these ideas are from the classics of the past 2,000+ years: Aristotle, Bunyan, Feynman. They knew these concepts that drive both the physical world and the world of the minds of men. We don't have to invent them; all we - the people - have to do is read, learn and do. Three little action verbs have the answers.

Read, learn & do.

Next year I will start with a series of posts on reform.

Word of the Day

"Zaftig" - adjective [$100] slang
Zaftig means 1. (of a woman) having a pleasantly plump figure; 2. full bodied, well proportioned. [from Yiddish 1935-40 literally juicy, succulent]
Sentence: That great beauty of the 1950s, Marilyn Monroe, had a zaftig build that modern culture might regard as fat. That's just wrong. Men - heterosexual men - are hard wired to like curves. The modern culture of excessive thinness is learned behavior from the fashion magazines that have been dominated by gay designers, who prefer boyish figures, for decades. That culture needs to be rejected; it harms young women and causes much unhappiness and pain as people try to do the unnatural. Some fat is good.


Bunkerman said...

good jobless claims number - a bgi improvement.

Could be seasonal ... or is QE2 working and helping the common man?

Bunkerman said...

hmm unless the beefers strike very hard this today, Bman will win all three helmet contests: 2nd half high, low & close.

Sigh ....

All that for $0 ... is there any better blog in the western world?


Bunkerman said...

re jobs number, I guess Barry had better start minting Ben's Medal of Freedom.

Bud said...

good jobless claims number lmaooooooooooooooooo

Bman get out of your ivory tower...there are no F'ng jobs out there

Bud said...

give me a F'ng break Bman............i'm not against farmers or miners........the reason corn soybeans wheat gold silver platinum copper are not cuz of end's

dollar tankaroooooooooooooooooo

Bud said...

peter schiff says gasoline will be $5 a gallon summer 2011............yup...QE2 is workin alright

let it fall my ass

Bunkerman said...

demand? maybe, but "some people" said it was demand in summer 2008 that drove oil to $150.

The numbers then showed demand was falling .. it was the beefers & pension funds then.

Now ... ?

Bunkerman said...

Chicago PMI strong.

jobless numbers falling.

QE2 seems to be working. Facts are facts.

Bud said...

peter schiff says US home prices to fall at least 20% in 2011

is peter schiff a viking beefer too Bman ??

Bunkerman said...

I don't know who he is, but he's going to be wrong.

Bud said... it your contention that there is no inflation in food prices out there ??

Bunkerman said...

Food prices have always fluctuated wildly due to weather and harvests, etc. No reason to draw my grand conclusions about them.

Spin-em said...

short peter schiff

Bunkerman said...

Happy New Year's to all readers.

I'll be making four dozen golden spring rolls for New Year's Eve & New Year's day meals, as well as having some Golden Kryptonite martinis aka Bunktinis.

That should provide plenty of good luck for all.

Bud said...

Marc faber says US treasuries are a 'suicidal investment '

thoughts Bman ?

Spin-em said...

a Haaaaaaaappy and Healthy New Year to you Bunk... all my readers too...looooooool

Bud said...

Bman will those spring rolls cost more this year ?? can you do an inflation check for me ?

Spin-em said...

be nice if we got a poster next year....just one....I mean..I think we can rule patrick just