Tuesday, December 27, 2011

And The Greatest Pancakes in the Universe are ...

Bunkerman's.  :)

A reprise challenge cage match was held the crisp morning of December 24 on the home turf of Big Al.  The participants were buff and prepared, each having a stock of secret ingredients to use.

Big Al chose the go the all-natural, greenie style route with plenty of zest of lemon for his perfectly formed citrus pancakes. Big Al's plating incorporated orange slices on a field of powdered sugar - quite attractive.

Bunkerman used sophisticated science and technology to capture dark matter and dark energy [aka red and green dark chocolate m&m's) and a few Higg's bosons (semi-dried Bing cherries) to flavor his delicate, fluffy (using cosmic inflation aka sour cream), and yes, a bit crunchy (via chopped walnuts) vanilla multigrain pancakes.  Bunkerman's plating used a Christmas motif - mint leaves and fresh red raspberries - to accentuate the red & green from the embedded m&ms.

Naturally, [ ;) ] man defeated nature and Bunkerman won.  The pancakes were graded according to taste (50%), texture (30%), plating (10%) and creativity (10%).  The contest was a bit close, though, with a point differential of about 20 pts out of a possible 400.

Bunkerman was, of course, modest in his win, simply thanking the judges and looking at his shoelaces as his HS coach used to urge. Big Al was gracious, congratulating Bunkerman for a well-fought match.

And Bunkerman began new plans for Relativistic Pancakes to be ready when Big Al issues a new challenge.

Word of the Day

"Felicity" - noun [$10]
Felicity means 1. a. great happiness, bliss; 1. b. an instance of bliss; 2. something producing happiness; 3. an appropriate and pleasing manner or style or an instance of it.
Sentence:  The contestants and judges enjoyed a morning of much felicity, partaking of good food and conversation during the preparation and tasting of two examples of supremely fine pancakes.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Education Cost Addendum

When I went to Harvard in the early 1970s, the cost of tuition, room & board was about $4,000 per year.  Let's assume that $3,000 was tuition.  For eight courses of one semester each, the tuition amounts to $375 per course.

Hmmm ... that number is not too far off from the current cost that I computed in yesterday's blog for the cost of a technologically modern course to be delivered to a student.

Thus we see that the entire gains and more from productivity over 40 years have been grabbed by the pharisee class as monopoly profits to themselves by price increases; nothing was passed through to consumers of the education services.

The true cost of college education per course:  about $100 for the lectures on the material, $100 for books and reading, and about $200 for grading services and Q&A.  By technology, this could be kept at early 1970s cost, BUT the pharisees want more ... for providing nothing extra.

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Cost of College Education

... is out of control and a bubble.

The bubble is caused by the monopoly of credentials that seem required by employers in both the private and public sectors.

To deem the cost of college education as a bubble, we must look at the cost and whether a cheaper substitute could accomplish the same result - aka knowledge.

The tuition and fees at Harvard for 2011 runs about $40,000.  The standard load is four courses per semester, making eight per year.  Thus a course costs $5,000 each.  For that, one gets two or three lectures per week, some access time (usually with a graduate student), some assigned papers and and an exam or two graded.

At Ohio State University (I'm not using that pretentious and linguistically false "The" with which the state pompously likes to prefix the name), a year's tuition and fees is about $10,000.  Computing an equivalent eight Harvard style courses, that makes $1,250 per course.

I know the content level of undergraduate and graduate college courses in science, math, humanities and social sciences.  My numerous degrees and extensive, broad course work gave me a very wide exposure at a high level.

The Teaching Company offers DVD and CD courses that provide lectures at the good undergraduate college level for prices (on sale) at around $100 each.  One can buy books on Amazon for around $100 per course or go to the public library and order them.  Thus, a diligent student can reproduce a good course and with study, learn the material, for about $100-200.   Missing is the ability to ask questions.  At Harvard, one can get that (at least when I was there).  At OSU, I don't know.  Maybe.  And have graded exams/papers.

How much would it truly cost to provide access for questions?  With today's electronic communication, not much.  How much would it cost to have graded exams and papers?  Ditto:  not much using modern electronic communication.

This won't teach one how to write, BUT it would teach you the facts - the knowledge of the material.

A diligent, self-learner can get college level knowledge of one course for about $200.  Or one can pay Harvard $5,000 or OSU $1,250.

The "overpayment" is between 600% and 2,500%.  That's a bubble - an obvious sign of a monopoly.

Can student learn the material themselves?  Yes.  I have done it, first in high school over 40 years ago and now.

Consider the TV show, Star Trek.  In numerous scenes, that great script writer, Gene Roddenberry showed computers of that period teaching people knowledge.  We have those computers today - even the voice recognition.

Even at the advanced [AP] high school level, free or low cost lectures are available.  For example, MIT open courseware provides lectures by top professors in physics suitable for engineers and scientists for freshmen and sophomores.

Modern technology should be cutting the cost of education by many multiples.  Why isn't it?

The Pharisees [ = professional classes, knowledge bureaucracy ] prevent these savings from being passed thru.  They are propping up that bubble to control access to milk money from the common man and woman wanting to provide their children with the opportunity that a good education brings.

It's really a despicable crime, to overcharge youths, burden them with huge loans that cannot be discharged in bankruptcy, all to enrich and overpay the pharisees.

Over time, this bubble needs to be burst.

[ By the way, the cost of graduate and professional schools likkely cannot be cut as much with technology.  For those graduate courses that require special skills and knowledge, technology can help some, but in my experience, would not be able to replace the direct interaction with good professors with experience at the forefront of the field.

[ I suspect the same applies to grade school and average high school courses.  Students need a teacher to show the way. But technology should permit larger class sizes and cost cutting ]

Word of the Day

"Nonplus" - verb and noun [$10]
Nonplus means (verb, transitive, usually in past tense as nonplussed, or the participle, nonplussing] completely perplex; 2. (noun) a state of perplxity, a standstill (at a nonplus, reduce to a nonplus).
Sentence: Don't be nonplussed by the extremely high cost of college education; recognize it as a monoploy induced bubble.

Friday, December 9, 2011

The Dumb Rich ...

... are also dangerous.

First, the stupidity.

From FT online today:  "The average hedge fund manager has lost 4.37 per cent in the year to the end of November, according to data just released by Hedge Fund Research – losing money in six of the past seven months."

The Rich pay big fees for this non-performance. Trillions of their dollars go to support the lifestyles of southeast Connecticut (Greenwich, Stamford, etc.) and Manhattan and the tony suburbs of New Jersey.  They are wasting their money.

Krypto is up almost 3% for the year as of a couple days ago.  A dog, albeight a very sweet and noble dog, is outperforming the "best and brightest" of the Street by about 7%.  Per trillion $ invested, that is $70,000,000,000, yes, $70 billion of value year to date has been squandered by the Dumb Rich.

Second, the danger.

Much of those trillions of the Dumb Rich are "invested" in trading strategies and trading funds and in collateral for derivative "bets".  None of that money builds a factory or hires people for services or does anything productive.  It's all being wasted and bled by the money manager leeches of Connecticut, Switzerland, London and the Cayman Islands.

Those billions of wealth are completely doing nothing productive .. they are a pool of mud around the legs of the world economy striving to climb to a better world.  Those trillions might as well be on the Moon, or even gone, squandered in a stupid war.  The world would be better if that money was spend hiring people to dig holes and fill them up.  At least the laborer digging the hole would spend the money.  The Dumb Rich neither spend it nor invest it.

The Dumb Rich are part of the problem.  They seem too stupid and selfish to recognize it.  Sure, they get a bit of applause when they appear in black tie at some gala in NYC or London or wherever.  But does that philanthropic money really help anyone?  Some does.  Ted Forstmann really did help poor youths get a better education.  I've written about others in the past, too.  Mostly, no.  The money goes to build a monument to themselves. 

Hello Dumb Rich!  Do something productive. 

Here's an idea.  Buy homes for some baby boomers facing homelessness, people who have worked hard all they lives and now face destitution.  $1 billion can buy 10,000 homes @ $100,000 out of foreclosure.  All you have to do is pay the taxes and let them live there, and keep the home up with sweat repairs.  You will have made a real difference for at least 100,000 people, maybe as much as 400,000 people counting children and others who might now have a home.

Or make some real investments.

Listen to Linus Larrabie (played by Humphrey Bogart) from that great movie, Sabrina:

***Quote spoken by Linus Larrabie explaining to David Larrabie the reason for business.  From the movie, Sabrina, 1954 with Humphrey Bogart & Audrey Hepburn & William Holden.***

Linus: Making money isn't the main point of business. Money is a by-product.

David: What's the main objective? Power?

Linus: Ah! That's become a dirty word.

David: What's the urge? You're going into plastics. What will that prove?

Linus: Prove? Nothing much. A new product has been found,something of use to the world.

A new industry moves into an undeveloped area. Factories go up, machines go in and you're in business.

It's coincidental that people who've never seen a dime now have a dollar and barefooted kids wear shoes and have their faces washed.

What's wrong with an urge that gives people libraries, hospitals, baseball diamonds and movies on a Saturday night?

***End of Quote***
Hello Dumb Rich! 
Do something productive.  Don't just count your gold and work to get more.

Word of the Day

"Obsequious" - adjective [$10]
Obsequious means exhibiting a servile attentiveness.
Sentence:  Obsequious hosts on Billionaire-vision (fka Bubblevision) make me puke as they kiss the butts of the innumerable billionaires whom that put on TV.  We want to hear the common man & woman!!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Newt ... ?


A vote for Newt is a vote for Barry. 

How can any rational person think the Newt can beat Obama?

Newt could probably get 1 out of 10 votes from women.  His treatment of his first two wives was scandalous and despicable.  And from that one can only conclude that he cannot be trusted.

And he took about $1.6 million from Freddie Mac for ... what ?  Was that a payoff for decades of support politically?  Or for future lobbying?  He takes $1.6 million from an institution that was at the heart of the 2008 Panic and Great Recession.  Did he do anything to push it towards responsible behavior.  NO.

Can one thus conclude that Newt can be bought?

And in the 1990s, he was attacking Bill Clinton for his sessions with Monica, all the while canoodling with women NOT his wife.  He obviously has a problem with his ... short arm aka second brain?  Perhaps, as he sometimes seems to think with that other organ.

Newt is a lifer politician, a denizen of the Dark City in the Swamp.

He can be bought, cannot be trusted, is a cluster hypocrite, and is part of the problem.

The R's backing him are showing their stupidity - maybe they want Barry to have another four years, when he can get a majority in the Supreme Court.  After that, we'll have a tyranny by the judiciary.

Can the Republican primary voters be dominated by fools?


Word of the Day

"Macaronic" - noun and adjective [$10]
Macaronic means (noun in plural) burlesque verses containing Latin (or other foreign) words and vernacular words with Latin etc.; (adjective)(of a verse) of this kind. [earlier = of the nature of a jumble or medley.
Sentence: [from The Familiar Enemy by Ardis Butterfield, page 25]"... in which love refrains in French are thoroughly interwoven with Latin, and macaronic sermons more generally, ..." [The book referenced is about cultural and linguistic aspects of the Hundred Years War between France and England when they really weren't France and England.]

Friday, December 2, 2011

Bank and Lawyer Lying Epidemic

As more and more facts come out, the existence of an enormous epidemic of lying and perjury by banks and their law firms in the past decade or more is becoming very clear.

Banks created mortgage securities by transferring originated mortgage loans to a trust.  But they violated most state fraud laws by not recording assignments of the transfer of the loans.  Hence under state law, the trust did not legally own the loan.  When trouble arose, the same bank - now under the guise of the servicer of the trust - proceeded to lie to courts or in filings by saying the trust did own the mortgage loan and had the rights to foreclose.  They were simply making it up - no one checked the loan papers to see that the trust in fact did own the loan.  Those statements were made under oath subject to perjury laws. 

Often law firms hired by the banks did that last step.  The bank management did not care about accuracy - they simply send the work to the low bidder, which might even have been a legal boiler room.

How many of these defective mortgage loans exist?  My guess is millions.

I personally know a several cases of this happening in both residential and commercial mortgage loans.  This travesty is not simple speculation or anti-capitalist rant.

Land records of millions of homes is now under a cloud. 

Think about this:  you eventually pay off the mortgage loan.  The servicer signs a release of lien which needs to be recorded.  But what happens when the entity signing that release is not in the chain of ownership back to the original lien recorded.  I wonder if the county will reject the recording?  What about a new title insurer when you try to sell the property?  The title search will show a lien from some entity that has never been properly extinguished.  This problem could arise 10 or 20 years from now.

What happens if the original company - perhaps a special purpose subsidiary of the bank - now longer exists?  Perhaps it was closed when the mortgage origination business soured in 2008-9.  Now what?  No corrective papers can ever be filed.  This is no wild speculation.

Today's FT online"  The Attorney General of Massachusetts has filed suit against five major banks "accusing them of “corrupting” the state’s land records through pervasive use of fraudulent documentation in seizing borrowers’ homes."  Further, "[Ms] Coakley seems to believe what only a few of us have said publicly: robosigning was often only a symptom of failure to properly assign and endorse mortgages from originators to the trusts,” said Mr Rosner, in reference to home loans bundled into securities."

What is to be done? 

The only solution is a massive class action that would require the banks to stand behind the title to all the real estate involved in these mortgage loans, and to commence action to repair the title to every single property affected.  With massive penalties for noncompliance.  And to take it out of bank top management pay.  After all, top management is ultimately responsible.

Word of the Day

"Spoliation" - noun [$10] an old one from the file
Spoliation means 1. the act of plundering; 2. the act of injuring beyond reclaim.
Sentence:  The spoliation by the major banks of the entire land ownership system in America is a colossal fraud that needs severe punishmant on the banks themselves and on the top management who were captains of that fleet of financial Vikings.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Ben ist der Mann.

Your writer was working on German this morning when the central bank news came out:  that title translates to "Ben is the Man".  Again, Ben is the leader, the only powerful official who seems to do his job and pay attention to reality.

Hooray for Ben for helping the European banks get $ liquidity; this also greatly supports the status of $ are THE reserve currency.

And the Chicago PMI number was strong; Ben's policies are greatly helping US manufacturing and exports.

Hey Barry .... give Ben the Medal of Freedom!

Monday, November 28, 2011

I Hate Microsoft Word

I Hate Microsoft Word

These "automatic" "features" are so annoying.  Nothing should be automatic unless I tell it to be automatic.  Microsft wants us all to go through training programs and bend over so they can have their way on us.

No way, Balmer, Gates & all those proto-fascists.

No word of the day today.  I am boiling too much.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday

I've never liked that name, as it seems rather blasphemous compared to the various October "Black" days when investors were crushed.  But today that name seems appropriate as Krypto got up early and gave me a strong buy order from her machine:  Buy some European stocks.  I will comply via VGK, the Vanguard European Stock Index ETF.

Word of the Day

None - had a plumbing problem here.  Is there an immutable law of nature that the likely time for plumbing or electrical problems is a holiday weekend?]

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

From the Wall Street Journal, lead editorial, published the day before Thanksgiving for 50+ years.  I believe these were written by the late, great writer, Vermont Royster.

The Desolate Wilderness

Here beginneth the chronicle of those memorable circumstances of the year 1620, as recorded by Nathaniel Morton, keeper of the records of Plymouth Colony, based on the account of William Bradford, sometime governor thereof:

So they left that goodly and pleasant city of Leyden, which had been their resting-place for above eleven years, but they knew that they were pilgrims and strangers here below, and looked not much on these things, but lifted up their eyes to Heaven, their dearest country, where God hath prepared for them a city (Heb. XI, 16), and therein quieted their spirits.

When they came to Delfs-Haven they found the ship and all things ready, and such of their friends as could not come with them followed after them, and sundry came from Amsterdam to see them shipt, and to take their leaves of them. One night was spent with little sleep with the most, but with friendly entertainment and Christian discourse, and other real expressions of true Christian love.

The next day they went on board, and their friends with them, where truly doleful was the sight of that sad and mournful parting, to hear what sighs and sobs and prayers did sound amongst them; what tears did gush from every eye, and pithy speeches pierced each other's heart, that sundry of the Dutch strangers that stood on the Key as spectators could not refrain from tears. But the tide (which stays for no man) calling them away, that were thus loath to depart, their Reverend Pastor, falling down on his knees, and they all with him, with watery cheeks commended them with the most fervent prayers unto the Lord and His blessing; and then with mutual embraces and many tears they took their leaves one of another, which proved to be the last leave to many of them.

Being now passed the vast ocean, and a sea of troubles before them in expectations, they had now no friends to welcome them, no inns to entertain or refresh them, no houses, or much less towns, to repair unto to seek for succour; and for the season it was winter, and they that know the winters of the country know them to be sharp and violent, subject to cruel and fierce storms, dangerous to travel to known places, much more to search unknown coasts.

Besides, what could they see but a hideous and desolate wilderness, full of wilde beasts and wilde men? and what multitudes of them there were, they then knew not: for which way soever they turned their eyes (save upward to Heaven) they could have but little solace or content in respect of any outward object; for summer being ended, all things stand in appearance with a weatherbeaten face, and the whole country, full of woods and thickets, represented a wild and savage hew.

If they looked behind them, there was a mighty ocean which they had passed, and was now as a main bar or gulph to separate them from all the civil parts of the world.

This editorial has appeared annually since 1961.

And the Fair Land

Any one whose labors take him into the far reaches of the country, as ours lately have done, is bound to mark how the years have made the land grow fruitful.

This is indeed a big country, a rich country, in a way no array of figures can measure and so in a way past belief of those who have not seen it. Even those who journey through its Northeastern complex, into the Southern lands, across the central plains and to its Western slopes can only glimpse a measure of the bounty of America.

And a traveler cannot but be struck on his journey by the thought that this country, one day, can be even greater. America, though many know it not, is one of the great underdeveloped countries of the world; what it reaches for exceeds by far what it has grasped.

So the visitor returns thankful for much of what he has seen, and, in spite of everything, an optimist about what his country might be. Yet the visitor, if he is to make an honest report, must also note the air of unease that hangs everywhere.

For the traveler, as travelers have been always, is as much questioned as questioning. And for all the abundance he sees, he finds the questions put to him ask where men may repair for succor from the troubles that beset them.

His countrymen cannot forget the savage face of war. Too often they have been asked to fight in strange and distant places, for no clear purpose they could see and for no accomplishment they can measure. Their spirits are not quieted by the thought that the good and pleasant bounty that surrounds them can be destroyed in an instant by a single bomb. Yet they find no escape, for their survival and comfort now depend on unpredictable strangers in far-off corners of the globe.

How can they turn from melancholy when at home they see young arrayed against old, black against white, neighbor against neighbor, so that they stand in peril of social discord. Or not despair when they see that the cities and countryside are in need of repair, yet find themselves threatened by scarcities of the resources that sustain their way of life. Or when, in the face of these challenges, they turn for leadership to men in high places -- only to find those men as frail as any others.

So sometimes the traveler is asked whence will come their succor. What is to preserve their abundance, or even their civility? How can they pass on to their children a nation as strong and free as the one they inherited from their forefathers? How is their country to endure these cruel storms that beset it from without and from within?

Of course the stranger cannot quiet their spirits. For it is true that everywhere men turn their eyes today much of the world has a truly wild and savage hue. No man, if he be truthful, can say that the specter of war is banished. Nor can he say that when men or communities are put upon their own resources they are sure of solace; nor be sure that men of diverse kinds and diverse views can live peaceably together in a time of troubles.

But we can all remind ourselves that the richness of this country was not born in the resources of the earth, though they be plentiful, but in the men that took its measure. For that reminder is everywhere -- in the cities, towns, farms, roads, factories, homes, hospitals, schools that spread everywhere over that wilderness.

We can remind ourselves that for all our social discord we yet remain the longest enduring society of free men governing themselves without benefit of kings or dictators. Being so, we are the marvel and the mystery of the world, for that enduring liberty is no less a blessing than the abundance of the earth.

And we might remind ourselves also, that if those men setting out from Delftshaven had been daunted by the troubles they saw around them, then we could not this autumn be thankful for a fair land.

This editorial has appeared annually since 1961.

Word of the Day
"Concision" - noun [$10]
Concision means the state or quality of being concise; conciseness.
Sentence: The bunker booklet contained a five part solution to America' big problems, described with much concision on 15 half size pages.  The booklet was mailed to every member of Congress, the Senate and the President, as well as a number of well-known personages in the media and investment community.  All they have to do is read it and do it.  Will they fail?  Do they care about any ideas from outside the Dark City and their media co-conspirators?  Time will tell.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

They came in the same old way ...

Describing the unchanging nature of French attacks, Wellington is reported to have said,

"They came on in the same old way and we defeated them in the same old way."

The hedge funds that have most of the excess capital of the rich seem to behave in that same old way:  barge in, barge out.  No true investing exists by them.  They simply trade to try to extract a profit from  ... who?  Each other now.  They are mindless.  They brawl like drunken cowboys in a western saloon.  Something happens and whoosh.  They all move together.

What do we do?  We practice judo-style investing, buying low, selling high and selling high and buying low, all done in smallish bits to grab slowly some extra percentage points of gain every year while maintaining large, long term investments with most of our capital.  This is Krypto's style.

She got off the couch this morning, nudged me,and voilà, I find an order:  buy some gold!

I will obey the machine, buying some GLD at the open to bring that asset class up to its level.  If it drop further, we will buy silver next.

The machine also says to "get ready" to buy some European stocks - a small further relative drop will trigger a strong buy there.

Word of the Day

"Jussive" - adjective [$10] Grammatical
Jussive means expressing a command [e. g. the jussive subjunctive in Latin]
Sentence:  Today Krypto was jussive, but usually she's a couch potato.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Monday Meandering

The super-committee failed.  No surprise.  The "leaders" have failed.  It's time to engage the people.

Markets getting crushed overnight, probably a hedge fund knee jerk reaction to the super-committee flunking.  Perhaps they will give Krypto a chance to re-buy what she sold at high prices recently.

Word of the Day

"Reticulate" - verb, transitive [$10] I saw this word in a book that I'm reading; the card was already in my file from high school days.
Reticulate  means 1. to mark, divide, or construct so as to form a network; 2. to distribute by a network (e. g. water or electricity).
Sentence:  The 14th century in western Europe did not have nations of England and Frence, but had "highly plural, contested, and reticulated identities of medieval culture."  The quote from The Familiar Enemy by Ardis Butterfield, Preface, page xxx.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

I Spy

That is the business model for so many companies nowadays. Let's mention a few of the ways corporations and government want to spy on us.

1.  Cell phones.  You are carrying a transponder that the government and cell phone companies use to monitor your movement and location.

2.  Google.  They keep track of your Internet server and all your searches, cataloging your location and interests.

3.  Facebook.  They delve into your address book and find people you have contacted by email.  They also want your real name to sell to marketing companies; I suspect they find your location, too.

4.  All Internet-related businesses.  They all act like Facebook and Google as much as possible.  Why do you get an invitation to join LinkedIn or Skype when a person you communicate with by computer joins.

5.  Car GPS.  "They" use those to monitor your movements.  If you become a suspect in a crime, the scalphunters will use that data to try to frame you.

6.  Reward programs.  Retailers sell your purchase data to marketing companies who then create a profile for you.

7.  Credit card purchases.  See item #6.

8.  Social Security numbers.  Lots of businesses want those to help them validate their data files on you and improve their profiles of you by removing data from other like-named persons.

9.  All government public information.  Internet data companies mine this to learn more about you.

10.  Internet browsing.  Unless you close the browser after visiting a site, the site your were at can detect which site you next visit.

11.  "Services" such as Zillow, Google earth, etc.  They publish photos that will disclose your home and business from overhead views.  Those photos are roadmaps for kidnappers and burglars ... and "them".

What to do?

Presuming you care about your privacy, you can use this knowledge to compartmentalize and let "them" know only what you wish "them" to know.

Don't carry a cell phone regularly.

Pay cash.  Keep a few hundred dollars on you at all times.  Unless the item costs more than that, just pay cash.

Don't use a "Rewards" card, or use use a friend's card - that will confuse "their" profile.

Don't give out your Social Security number.  No one has a right to that number unless it is connected to tax reasons.  There are many laws that govern its use.  See ->

Beware of GPS devices in cars. 

Overhead photos can be defeated by trees.  Plant them and use them for concealment.

Street level spying can also be defeated by trees, shrubs and fences.  Use them.

Compartmentalize your Internet purchases.  Don't buy anything online unless you don't care if "they" learn about it.

Close your browser after visiting sites.  Just re-open a clean version for each site.

If you use Facebook, etc., don't click those "like" buttons unless you want to broadcast to "all" that you really like that.  Those "Like" clicks are gold to marketing companies.

Make your efforts a game - try to confuse "their" profile.  I do that all the time.  The more you mess up their data files, the less they can piece together about you.  Your data becomes less valuable for them.  When the supermarket gave me a coupon for tampons once, I knew I was succeeding.

Remember, just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean "they" aren't spying on you.

And I know ... I've seen black helicopters fly over my home years ago.  Now the trees give me lots of concealment.  :)

Word of the Day 

"Grisaille" - noun [$10]
Grisaille means 1. a method of painting in grey monochorme, often to imitate sculpture; 2. a painting or stained-glass window of this kind.
Sentence:  Use the simple methods I've outlined about to protect some of your privacy - give them grisaille instead of a full color version of your profile.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wednesday's Word

Word of the Day

"Loy" - noun [$100-1000] obsolete, rare, dialect; three distinct usages.
Loy means 1. alloy; (2) (Anglo-Irish, Irish language spelling is 'laighe") a kind of spade used in Ireland; 3. a female given name.
Sentence:  Can reasonable solutions to national problems be found when most political discourse consists, metaphorically, of each side hitting the other in the head with a loy?

This word appears in the fine, famous play about aspects of Irish rural life by J. M. Synge, "Playboy of the Western World".

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Ideology Needed ...

The birthplace of the Occupy Wall Street 'movement' was cleaned out very early this morning by hundreds of NYC police & cleaning crews.  This movement will likely fizzle out for the simple reason that it has no unifying ideology.  Ideology can connect people across distances - it is a long rang, anthropic force with much potential power.  If people follow the ideology and its implications with some unity, they work together to accomplish 'great' tasks.  But is they have competing ideas, the movement becomes neutralized, much as positive charges cancel negative one, leaving no net force.

Word of the Day

"Unkempt" - adjective [$10]
Unkempt means 1. untidy, of neglected appearances; 2. uncombed, disheveled.
Sentence:  Many dozens of unkempt protesters were push out of the park last night by police in riot gear.

Monday, November 14, 2011

"Austerity" is simply Reality

Not knowing much about the finances and government of Italy, except that it's a typical unstable parliamentary system, I will describe the "Austerity" that America must implement to stop wasting borrowed and taxpayer money.

In simple, Reagan-esq terms, The Federal government and the states must stop wasting money:  stop spending money like a drunken sailor.

1.  Stop providing excessive retirement, health care and disability benefits.
2.  Stop letting government employees retire before age 65
3.  Stop letting retirement benefits be based on inflated pay of the last few years of work.
4.  Make the public employees pay at least 50% of the cost of retirement and health care benefits.
5.  Change disability benefits to require work - any work - except for the paraplegic or blind or deaf.
6.  Get rid of government departments wholesale:  eliminate the Departments of Education, Commerce, Labor, Energy, Health & Human Services, Agriculture, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, and Homeland Security. Keep only a few bureaus with lean staffs.
7.  Cut the pay of all Federal government employees making over $80,000 by 20% (that is, by 20% or to $80,000).
8.  Streamline the firing process for governmental employees.
9.  All governmental boards overseeing governmental employees relations should be staffed exclusively by private sector personnel.
10. Eliminate all 'bargaining' with public employee unions.

And implement the policies of Bunkerman's pamphlet, Common Sense II.

Word of the Day

"Satyriasis" - noun [$10] Medical
Satyriasis means excessive sexual desire in men.
Sentence:  The popular term for satyriasis is the Wade Boggs syndrome.  The ex-prime minister of Italy, Silvio Berlosconi, has it, too.  I'm not sure if Bill Clinton had it, or simply that Hillary cut him off.  And then we have Tiger Woods ...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Support Local Business

Here's a post that a friend put on a family web site; the post contains lots of common sense that would help the nation and its people a lot if adopted by more of us.

***post begins***
How about a new tradition becoming part of defending liberty?

Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition and ALWAYS remembering the REASON FOR THE SEASON

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor. This is concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes there is!

It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper? Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local American hair salon or barber? Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.

Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down the Benjamines on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course. There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy? Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day, flowers, a nice fruit basket.

My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre. Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of lights, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

You see, Christmas is no longer about draining American pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about US, encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine.

****end of post***

I'll add to that - buy gifts from local businesses and shops on Main Street,  Don't send your money to China via that one way express, money train known as Wal-Mart.  Try to buy items made in the USA.

Word of the Day

"Contralto" - noun [$10]
Contralto means 1.a. the lowest female singing voice; 1. b. a singer with this voice; 2. a part written for contralto.
Sentence:  The booming contralto of Kate Smith singing "God Bless America" is quite moving every time one hears it.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


I was watching the early show on Bubblevision this AM around 5:30 as I read the news and ran the model.

One pundit said deflation was coming.  Another said inflation was coming.  None gave any reasoned analysis, perhaps because the show's producers don't give them any time to do that.  Oh well ...

Markets are getting smashed from turmoil in the Italian bond markets.  Sigh ...

Doing nothing - the model is in balance.

Italy should offer bonds to retail investors in the US, payable in tourism  :)  I'd be a buyer for another trip to Rome and another for a trip to Florence.

Word of the Day

"Yare" - adjective [$100] pronounced either 'yare' to rhyme with 'dare', or 'yar' to rhymne with 'par'.
Yare means 1. quick, agile, lovely; 2. (of a ship) quick to the helm, easily hamdled or maneuvered; 3. (archaic) a. ready, prepared; b. nimble, quick.
Sentence: A yare investor outperforms a sluggard:  rebalancing matters and must be checked whenever an asset class moves a lot.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Monday's Word

I found some good ones in studying Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra.

Word of the Day

"Riggish" - adjective [$1000] now chiefly dialect.
Riggish means wanton, licentious.
Sentence:  Would you rather have a riggish president or a foolish president?  From voters' behavior related to Bill Clinton and Herman Cain, versus Al Gore and Rick Perry, the answer is bipartisan:  we prefer a riggish president.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

A Word for Thursday

Word of the Day

"Contemn" - verb, transitive [$10] literary
Contemn means to despise, to treat with disregard.
Sentence:  History should contemn the presidency of George W. Bush with a simple conclusion being, "Missed Opportunities".  That's what too much Jack Daniel's does. Had he kept spending under control and led a decisive war in Iraq and Afghanistan, he could have been lauded,  Instead, he let the Republican hogs feed uncontrollably and recreated the mistakes of Vietnam.  Sigh ...

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Whatnot Wednesday

Krypto's model showed a weak buy for European stocks and an "almost" strong buy for gold-silver.  We wait for strong signals in this market.

It's too bad one can't buy some of those European bonds here  - at least in retail quantities.  At 7%, I'd buy Italy.  Ireland is interesting, too.  Lol, yes, those are nations I've recently visited & liked.  But the broker we use for long term municipal bond purchases doesn't have them.  Hmmm I wonder if Vanguard has them?  Will check.

Also, I wonder about the tax treatment.  One tax is OK, but not two.

Word of the Day

"Querulous" - adjective [$10]
Querulous means complaining, peevish.
Sentence:  A querulous customer should be fired unless he/she is quite profitable.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Close, but ...

Krypto is sleeping in ... her model shows no action for today.  Other asset classes fell enough to keep the gold+silver class from getting a clear buy signal.  I see futures are down bigtime this morning.  Oh well, maybe in a few weeks Krypto can re-buy what she sold on Friday.

Obey the machine ....

MF Global

$700 million is missing.  The hedge fund industry gets another black eye.  Corzine seems to have been a power hungry, greedy knave.  First he did  nothing to help the people of New jersey as both a Senator and Governor.  Now he blows up a formerly fine firm and was captain of a ship while its hold was looted.  He's certainly Knave of the Month.

Word of the Day

"Rococo" - adjective [$10]
Rococo means excessively ornate or intricate.
Sentence:  Much art and decor from the era of Louis XV exhibits the rococo style; one can see this clearly in many rooms of the Frick Museum at the corner of Fifth Avenue and east 70th street in New York City.

Monday, October 31, 2011

The Coney Revisited

Yesterday I made a few minor improvements to my recipe for a fine, but simple, food from the heartland aka Ohio.  By the way, natives in my part of Ohio pronounce it, "uh-hi-uh" with the stress on the 'hi' :)

A coney in Ohio is named for its namesake not from Coney Island in New York City, but from the sandwich of the old Coney Island in Cincinnati.  A coney is a hot dog topped with a meat sauce and onions.

To repeat my old recipe from a prior post, fry up a pound of good hamburger (lowest fat content), drain, add a can of Manwich (a sloppy Joe sauce), heat a bit.  That's the meat sauce.  It can be refrigerated and saved, but reheat it before using.  No change there.

For the best coney, use Angus "bun-size" hot dogs - they have the best flavor and the extra length lets you add more sauce evenly.  Apply some Coleman's mustard to the hot dog bun of your choice.  Coleman's is very yellow and a bit hot, so don't use too much.  Boil the hot dogs a few minutes to cook (they are pre-cooked, so all you are doing is heating them). Put the hot dog into the mustard-lined hot dog bun, then slather some meat sauce onto the hot dog and add chopped onions.  Eat and enjoy!

NOTE:  put the hot dog into the bun first, and add the meat sauce on top, then the onions.  You might want a spoon handy as some of the goodies will inevitably fall out when you chomp on the Coney.

Simple, cheap, tasty food for the common man and woman with all-American ingredients.  One need not be rich to eat well in our modern world.

Word of the Day

"Adlect" - verb, transitive [$10,000] from ancient Rome.
"Adlection - noun [$10,000] from ancient Rome.
Adlect means to nominate or choose a person to enter the Roman Senate.  In the principate, the Emperor would adlect senators by nomination. 
Adlection was the term for a process that the Romans used to fill civic vacancies.  It was most known for filling the Senate to the requisite number, when membership fell below the ordained number of members.  The term is a Latin combined word, from "ad" meaning towards, for, and "lect" meaning collect, pick, hence "adlect" mans to pick for the Senate.  Compare to "elect", from 'e' meaning from, out of.  Hence, "elect" means to choose from people.
Sentence:  Caligula once adlected a horse to the Senate, whether out of derision for its other members or in a bit of mad humor.  Today,

Friday, October 28, 2011


Yesterday's big move up triggered some action from Krypto.  She nudged me to run the model, and, mirabile dictu, a strong buy signal appeared for the super class of cash+TIPs+fixed income.  Since fixed income and TIPs are grossly overpriced, the move is to cash.

Moderate sell signals exist for US stocks, European stocks, emerging markets and real estate.

Thus, I sent in orders to sell some US stocks (via VTI), emerging market stocks (via VWO), and European stocks and Real estate (via respective Vanguard index funds).

Hmm ... buy low, sell high.  That's what Krypto did over the past few months.  She's far better that the average hedge fund manager.

Good doggie ... here's your fee - a tasty dog biscuit :)

Word of the Day

"Peripeteia" - noun [$10]
Peripeteia means a sudden change of fortune in drama or in life.
Sentence:  Herman Cain's presidential campaign experienced peripeteia in positive public awareness as Rick Perry flamed out and Cain's simple 9-9-9 plan received attention.  But Herman Cain needs to read my pamphlet and adopt my ideas to develop persistently strong poll numbers, otherwise his flame will puff out, too.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Back in the Saddle

Or should I say that I survived a few days in the belly of the Beast?

The Belly of the Beast is Manhattan, New York City.

Business seems to be booming for that community.  The luncheon and dining spots are full, the bar was crowded on the Tuesday evening.  Tables were scarce at the "club" for lunch.  Many obviously busy people in grey suits and nondescript ties were earnestly discussing something.  One could even observe the younger financial piranhas chatting over drinks in rather good moods.

The French seem to be movivng to NYC.  I was very surprised about how many people speaking French that I passed by in the area of Fifth Avenue - Central Park - upper Midtown.  Most seemed to be residents, sonme were tourists.  Interesting, no?

Meanwhile, a story appeared with data that the new poor in suburbia are both surprising and overwhelming these support agencies in major metropolitan areas across America.  The new poor are not single mothers of minority ethnicity in central urban cores.  They are 50-ish people out of work, losing their life savings and homes in suburbia with few prospects of avoiding destitution in old age.

Few in the Ruling Class of Pharesees, hogs and the dukes of DC notice them or care a whit about the devastation this endless recession is causing.  Sigh ...

Meanwhile, Europe seems to have reached some kind of consensus on the weaker nations.  Lenders get a 50% haircut and its banks have to raise capital.  No surprise there.

By the way, the screechers about the end of the Euro don't realize that the leaders in Europe know that they need the EU and Euro to keep the long term prospects of peace and no more European wars.  They is why they are working hard to keep it.  They have memories of real wars and don't want to suffer those on their soil any more.  Hence less selfish behavior and a willingness to work out a solution.

Word of the Day

"Anagnorisis" - noun [$100] (pl. -ses)
Anagnorisis means (in Greek tragedy) the critical moment of recognition or discovery, esp. preceding peripeteia; a moment of terribl eself-recognition.  Several examples of anagnorisis are the moment that Oedipus recognizes what he had done, or when Lady Macbeth at the end of said play cannot seem to clean the vision of blood from her hands.
Sentence:  Will the Pharisees and hogs and dukes of DC never reform, or will they fight on for their own ruling class until a time of anagnorisis as the deluge rolls over them all?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wednesday's Word

Word of the Day

"Quidnunc" - noun [$10] from Latin for "what now"
Quidnunc means a newsmonger, a person given to gossip.
Sentence:  Why do the faces on a market or business oritented TV show so often devolve to chattering quidnuncs?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tuesday Tidbit

Your writer verily applies the recent research result that chocolate is good for one's blood vessels.  He just had a few squares of dark chocolate with his 2nd cup of pure black joe.  Mmmmm.

Word of the Day

"Vernacular" - adjective [$10]
Vernacular means 1. using a language or dialect native to a region or country rather than a literary, cultured or foreign language; 2. of, being, or relating to a substandard language; 3. of, being, or relating to the normal form of a language.
Sentence:  The Federal education efforts for 50+ years has obviously failed, measured by the low vernacular now prevalent in newspapers and TV compared to times as recent as 1965.  Get rid of the Department of Education.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Monitoring on a Monday

The model shows weak sells for US stocks and real estate - I will wait.

Word of the Day

"Truculent" - [adjective [$10]
Truculent means 1. feeling or displaying ferocity; 2. deadly, destructive; 3. scathingly harsh; 4. aggressively self-assertive.
Sentence:  A headline you will never see:  "Anti Wall Street Demostrations Grow Truculent".  Modern news writers never use a $10 word.

Friday, October 14, 2011

TGIF and a Word

I read that the rich are putting millions on Obama for the election.  I wonder what they are buying?  I have heard that the legal profession is coughing up millions in "donations".  I guess the pharisees are backing their boss and benefactor.

Word of the Day

"Sonsy" - adjective [$10] also sonsie.  Scottish. Probably from Shakespeare.
Sonsy means 1. plump, buxom; 2. of a cheerful disposition; 3. bringing good fortune.
Sentence:  The sonsy picture of the German lady serving beer on the label of St. Pauli Girl beer brings out good spirits and a smile (at least for guys).

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Currency Value is an Economic Weapon

Currency is a potent weapon for trade and economic combat.  For decades many (maybe all?) so-called emerging markets have used the value of their currency as a tool to help them develop export industries.  An economist such as a Friedmanite would say, fine, they are subsidizing American consumers and we benefit.  That is wrong.  That simplistic conclusion applies static economics to a dynamic system and gets the wrong answer. 

The reality is that the American consumer only initially benefits, but over time loses as jobs and production move to those nations.  Too many American consumers eventually lose his/her jobs and become impoverished.

There are many ways to keep the value of a currency unnaturally low.  Why do we care what is the reason?  Let's just measure the result and determine if a nation's currency is unnaturally low.  Purchasing power parity is a fair, long term relative value for currencies.  Everyone can understand it. 

Example:  I know prices in New York City.  When I have travelled travel to Europe and stayed in major cities such as Rome, London and Amsterdam and Dublin, I see that the value of the Euro or pound is close enough to prices in NYC to know that the euro is roughly fairly value versus the US dollar.  Same for the Canadian Dollar.  I have not traveled to Beijing, but good friends have.  They tell me prices are half of NYC.  That's far, far from a range of fair value.  And we know China controls the value of its currency.

The professional statisticians can measure purchasing power parity - they have the techniques and resources.  The American people need some reasonable defense against predator nations that wants to grab industries from America using currency as a tool.

Here is my plan to solve this problem objectively and evenhandedly, as published in my pamphlet in the Jobs section.

"Use objective purchasing power parity tests to identify foreign nations that keep their currency values down in order to grab American business and jobs. For a currency that averages 20% below parity for a year, impose a countervailing tariff on goods and services to adjust the currency to parity.  Keep this tariff in place until the currency’s average value is within the 20% bound for a year.  Nations that force or keep their currency values low are simply engaging in international predatory pricing that hurts American workers’ jobs and pay levels."

Let's do this this way - China is not singled out, and we should not fear if other nations apply the same principal.

Word of the Day

"Salubrious" - adjective [$10]
Salubrious means favorable to or promoting health or well-being.
Sentence:  Some re-balancing of currency values for trade via a tariff bumpers as Bunkerman proposes would be economically salubrious for the common people in America.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Krypto had remarkably good timing Friday with her stock purchases.  Can a dog really outperform all those overpaid hedge fund managers?

I guess John Paulson is no longer the great genius - his funds are down big, the worst 47% for the year.  To his credit, I read that a good bit of the money is his own or his employees.  How well has he done?  Bloomberg says, "clients who came in at the beginning of 2008 have made 4.3 percent, according to Bloomberg calculations".  That sucks and is surely not worth a 2% annual fee and 20% of the ups.

All these beefers do is take big risks with OPM - Other People's Money.  Some win, some lose.  The winners take a big fee; the losers close down and start a new fund.  On average, it's a scam.  Krypto works for dog biscuits and outperforms them overall.

Word of the Day

"Pule" - verb, intransitive [$10] literary.  Often used in its participial form, puling.
Pule means to cry querulously or weakly, whine, whimper.
Sentence:  The dumb rich should stop their puling ways and simply make long term investments the Krypto way.

Friday, October 7, 2011

TGIF and a move

Krypto nudged me to run the model, and she found a moderately strong buy signal for some emerging market stocks, which is intriguingly anomalous to other stock positions.  I suppose the beefers were liquidating those in force as they faced margin calls.  For whatever reason, that asset class needs topping up, which I will do at the close via a mutual fund exchange from money markets.

The relevant mutual fund is the Vanguard Emerging Markets (Admiral) Fund.

Word of the Day

[to come]

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Proper Business

Business suffers criticism in many quarters of the public debate, sometimes for valid reasons, sometimes for false reasons.  Some who criticize business have well-reasoned arguments, others are false fronts for ideologies or groups who want power for themselves. 

Suppose one wanted to provide the public with a simple argument for business.  I heard such recently in re-watching the fine old movie, Sabrina, starring Humphrey Bogart, Audrey Hepburn and William Holden.  It's a great movie, both funny and serious and has a happy ending.  The setting is the US - New York City - in the 1950s.

Linus Larrabie (Humphrey Bogart), the older son who operates the family business, explains to his younger brother, David (William Holden), why business is a good.

***quote begins***

Linus: Making money isn't the main point of business. Money is a by-product.

David: What's the main objective? Power?

Linus:  Ah! That's become a dirty word.
David:  What's the urge? You're going into plastics. What will that prove?

Linus: Prove? Nothing much.  A new product has been found, something of use to the world. A new industry moves into an undeveloped area.  Factories go up, machines go in and you're in business.

It's coincidental that people who've never seen a dime now have a dollar and barefooted kids wear shoes and have their faces washed.

What's wrong with an urge that gives people libraries, hospitals, baseball diamonds and movies on a Saturday night?

***quote ends***

There is nothing inherently sordid about business - it can be a noble activity, if conducted with values and virtues and honor.  Let's defend business - good business.

Word of the Day

"Lugubrious" - adjective [$10]
Lugubrious means 1. mournful esp.: exaggeratedly or affectedly mournful.; 2. dismal.
Sentence: Why let a lugubrious outlook oppress your psyche?  The world will be fine: people inherently want to improve their lives and that desire will carry the world to a new prosperity ... if the hogs and pharisees are stopped from enthroning a new aristocracy.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Who Put That There?

I refer to the Cosmological Constant (denoted by the capital Greek letter, Lambda, which looks like an upside-down "V").

This year's Nobel prize in physics was awarded to three astronomers who, I suppose, "led" the research teams whose measurements of a certain type of supernovae were used to derive a positive value for the Cosmological Constant.  For fairness, let us at once recognize that the papers publishing the results had dozens of authors, the prize winners being only the two lead authors and one other selected from the pool .  And let us also recognize that use of those supernovae as markers of the structure of the universe has been know for at least 50 years or more.  Why purportedly exalted prizes are given to anoint the results of the few doing rather obvious research discussed for decades, but finally realizable with large amounts of taxpayer money and new technology, is an unknowable that perhaps sociologists or anthropologists can explain.

The Cosmological Constant represents an energy density of the universe, and seems to be about 72-74% of the density of the universe today.  This energy density contribution to the density of the universe is unchanging over time.  Just after the Big Bang, the matter density was much, much larger, but now the matter density and energy density appear to be about in the rough ratio of 1 to 3.

In any case, the Cosmological Constant values bandied about the Internet today are thus, depending on the units chosen:

10−35 s−2, 10−47 GeV4, or 10−29 g/cm3

How big are those numbers?  Let's look at the last one, which has normal density units of mass per unit volume.  The mass of an electron is ->

9.11×10−31 kilograms.

As one kilogram has 1,000 grams, the Cosmological Constant derived is about .01 electrons per cubic centimeter, which sounds like a rather small density.  For comparison, the warm, ionized interstellar medium has a density in the rough range of 0.2-0.5 atom per cubic centimeters.  This represents up to 50% of the volume of the Milky way and is rather well studied and understood.  As a proton weighs 1836x more than an electron, the warm, ionized interstellar medium in our galaxy has a density of about 600 electrons per cubic centimeter.  Thus, the warm, ionized interstellar medium in the Milky Way has about 60,000 times more density that the equivalent energy density represented by the Cosmological Constant.

As the density represented by the Cosmological Constant now dominates/controls the expansion of the Universe, we can see the Cosmological Constant makes up for its small value in volume ;)

What is it?  Why?  Does its existence have a purpose?  Who put that there?

No none has any idea supported by any evidence.

This quote of Hamlet in Hamlet seems appropriate:

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy"

Word of the Day

"Monism" - noun [$10] and "Monist"
Monism means 1. any theory denying the duality of matter and mind; 2. (philosophical and theological) the doctrine that only one supreme exists.
Monist means a person who adheres to monism.
Sentence:  (A) (from Great Ideas in Philosophy) "For the ontological monist, only one kind of furniture exists in reality, viz., the physical. (B) The seeming existence of the Cosmological Constant seems to rule out monism as a philosophical foundation for the Universe:  dark energy is very, very different from matter.  There's something else out there beyond our current knowledge.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


That is the question.  Humans want to know why something exists or happens; philosophy and the sciences have thinking processes to help us determine "why".  We try to find underlying reasons "why".  We do have to recognize, however, that at a deep level, some concepts are simply there - they exist.

A simple example is the number, one, i. e., 1.  Asking why 1 exists is a pointless exercise in sophism.  1 simply exists as the representation on unity, the existence of something:  je pense, donc je suis, or in Latin, cogito, ergo sum, or in English, I think, therefore I am.  Axioms are necessary as the foundation of a system of knowledge.  For you metaphor lovers, one cannot build a strong house on sand, even if you build it of bricks.  A house built on sand will fall ... eventually.

Now in high school physics, one learns about conservation of energy.  And conservation of momentum.  And conservation of angular momentum.  Those concepts are supremely useful in understanding the motion of bodies and actions of all kinds of materials and our world.

Why?  Why are those quantities - energy, momentum, and angular momentum - conserved (i. e., constants of motion).

This is something one can prove from deeper, more obvious axioms.  All it takes is a bit of multivariable calculus and knowledge of mechanics at the level of an advanced undergraduate or first year graduate student at a good college science program.  Here is a reference:  Mechanics, by L. D. Landau and E. M. Lifshitz, which is Volume I of Course of Theoretical Physics (translated from Russian). In my second edition, which I read in 1974, pages 13-19 cover this material.  Hmmm ... in 1974, this book cost me $10 for a hardcover copy.

I won't show you the math or how those conservation laws are derived, as typing equations and Greek letters is beyond my computer skills.  Here are the results.

The more fundamental axioms upon which classical mechanics are founded are the homogeneity of time, the homegeneity of space and the isotropy of space.

Homegeneity of Time

In simple terms, homogeneity of time means that under very general conditions, the motions of particles or behavior of physical systems will be the same whether one does the experiment or actions now or next year or in ten years or in a billion years in the future or in the past.  From the axiom of homogeneity of time one can prove that energy is conserved.

Homgeneity of Space

In simple terms, homogeneity of space means that under very general conditons, the motions of particles or behavior of physical systems will be the same whether one does the experiment or actions here or in Nebraska or in the galaxy Andromeda.  From the axiom of homogeneity of space, one can prove that momentum is conserved.

Isotropy of Space

In simple terms, isotropy of space means that under very general conditions, the motions of particles or behavior of physical systems will be the same whether one orients the system rightside up or upside down or to the left or right or at a 30 degree angle or whatever direction.  From the axiom of isotropy of space, one can prove that angular momentum is conserved.


At the deepest level of the tree of knowledge are sound philosophical concepts. One needs to understand what are the questions and what are the deepest concepts; scientists - good scientists - try to understand "why" by standing on solid ground.  And if one finds the unexplainable, one needs to re-examine the ground for ... holes.

Skepticism is essential, but once one finds good ground, one must move on to build the structures of knowledge, and fight the good fights.

The axioms of homogeneity of time and space, and isotropy of space are good ground.

[Btw, of course all this can be extended into relativistic space-time by simple generalizations of the definitions of energy, momentum and angular momentum.]

Word of the Day

"Durst" - verb [$10] archaic or dialect
Durst is an archaic past tense of 'dare', showing the old germanic foundations of English.
Sentence:  Obama durst to order the killing of a US citizen without trial in blatant violation of the US Constitution:  resign!

Monday, October 3, 2011


Out in the heartland last week with some time to spare, I began wondering about the "possible" discovery that neutrinos might travel faster than light, at least under some conditions.  First the disclaimer:  the experimenters may have missed a systematic error and the result may be wrong.  BUT they did wait a few years before publishing the complete results to check their work with much care, AND this is not the first time that such a possibility has been contemplated.  Neutrinos are rather odd.

I am struck by the similar nagging notion that when some phenomena is unexplained by past knowledge and theories, that it sometimes leads to a new, better way of understanding the world.

Past Examples

A famous Danish astronomer, Tycho Brahe, found that the position of Mars was off about five degrees for a few days of the year.  Not much.  Others brushed the anomaly under the rug.  Kepler did not and discovered the true equations of motion for the orbits of planets, leading to Newton's discovery of the classical law of gravity.

Astronomers noticed that the rotations curves of spiral galaxies seemed to imply that galaxies were surrounded by huge, uniform distributions of some kind of mass that had no influence on star formation.  Also, they found that clusters of galaxies seemed to be much, much heavier than explained by the galaxies they contained.  For decades, that was 'brushed under the rug'.  Then other measurements helped prove the existence of dark matter.

The Davis neutrino experiment found no neutrinos from the Sun for decades. Physicists ignored it, assuming the astronomers made a mistake in their models of star interiors.  Later, evidence came that neutrinos were purportedly oscillating over the 93 million miles into other, undetectable forms.


c > 1 ?
m > 0 ?

[in lieu of subscripts, I use 'c' and 'm' here for the speed and rest mass of a neutrino.]

The recently published experimental results find the speed of the neutrino to be 1.000248 as expressed in units of the velocity of light being 1.  Measurements of the flight time of neutrinos from a supernova showed those traveled at the speed of light to within 1 part in 450 million [i. e., to within 0.00000000222].  Those neutrinos has much less energy that the ones observed here on earth to travel faster than light.  Perhaps the speed of a neutrino is not a constant:  all particles with rest mass can have variable speeds.

"Theory" says they "must" have mass (i. e., rest mass), yet all measurements so far find none.  In fact, the experiments measure the square of the mass and those experiments find that quantity is negative.  The error bars encompass zero, so the scientists state the results as an upper limit to the neutrino mass.  But if the results are correct, then the neutrino mass is imaginary.  Yes, an imaginary number.  The canonical imaginary number conveyed by i which equals the square root of -1.  A particle with an imaginary mass has strange properties.  One is that it would seem to travel faster than light.  Hmmm.

Perhaps the neutrino is a form of tachyon.  That has been speculated in the past.  Tachyons are odd particles that always travel faster than light.  They also have imaginary mass.  And they can be used to explore time backwards.  Hmmm.  Other explanations of some phenomena seem to require advanced electromagnetic waves for their explanation.  All this is puzzling.  Are we seeing the effects of some new, now unexplained structure of the Universe?

Time will tell.

Word of the Day

"Endue" - verb, transitive [$10] literary
Endue means (followed by 'with') invest or provide (a person of thing) with qualities, powers, etc.
Sentence: [from the preface of "All for Love", by John Dryden as published in vol. XVIII of the Harvard Classics, page 14] "Men of pleasant conversation (or at least esteemed so), and endued with a trifling kind of fancy, perhaps helped out with some smattering of Latin, are ambitious to distinguish themselves from the herd of gentlemen, by their poetry (Latin phrase omitted here) and is this not a wretched affectation."

Wretched:  one of those fine words now underused.

Friday, September 23, 2011

TGIF and a bit more

Is the Board of HP out of its mind ... bipolar?  They obviously should all resign.  We are seeing the destruction of a formerly fine company with fine products.  How much money have they paid the ex-CEO?  The ex-ex-CEO?  And now the new CEO?  The directors? What a remarkable cluster FUBAR!

We bought a few stocks yesterday afternoon about 3:30 when the DJIA was down well over 500 pts:  JPM, HBC, FCX.  Those had been on the shopping list for awhile, but at the prices offfered then, we decided to start buying.  Those are not trades, but are long term investments.  Buys were made with 25% of the cash raised when the S&P was over 1300 a few months ago.  We are looking for more buys/adds to make in high quality stocks with dividends over 3% and plenty of room to raise them, meaning that payouts should be under 1/3 of earnings.

Word of the Day

"Suppurate" - verb, intransitive [$10]
Suppurate means 1. to form pus; 2. fester.
Sentence:  The self-inflicted wounds of HP continue to suppurate as the Board of Directors does nothing effective to cleanse them.  Resign!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Good Fight

This morning's headlines feature the possibility of a government shutdown over spending.

Hooray !!!

That's the correct battle - cut spending.

Disaster relief should be funded as a recurring item.  Disasters occur somewhere every year.  They are not unusual.  Cut some other wasteful program to fund them

Go for it, Tea party!  Get on message, Republican leadership!

Shut the government down - stop all this worthless spending.

The right fight.

Word of the Day

"Supine" - adjective [$10]
Supine means lying on the back or with face upward.
Sentence:  Here's hoping the Republican leadership stops being supine dolts and force real spending cuts on the budget bill.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Instructions for Ben et al.

Attention Ben and other Federal Reserve officials.

Here are the instructions for your 'actions' after the end of your two day meeting.

1.  Do nothing.
2.  Claim victory in your QE2 effort - you succeeded in reducing long term interest rates to levels not seen since the 1950s or prior to the 1930s when America was on the gold standard.  The dollar is stable and emerging market currencies that were too low have risen in value.  Inflation is well under control, being in the rough target range.
3.  Issue a statement that correctly blames Congress and the President for the current stagnation:  (A) they utterly failed in doing anything to help the housing markets or the job prospects for Americans or aid small business in getting simple loans; (B) they have utterly failed in real tax reform; (C) they utterly failed in spending reform; (D) they utterly failed in financial reform; and (E) they squandered the 2009 "stimulus" money on worthless pork and bailouts of profligate states.
4.  As a coda, tell the Republican leaders to keep their snouts out of your job until they show a modicum of success in doing their own jobs.
5.  Urge all 'leaders' in the Dark City to read this blog to find truly new ideas and solutions for America's problems.

The pamphlet goes to the printer today; planning a distribution by mid October.

Word of the Day

"Subjoin" - verb, transitive [$10] from Marshal's "Life of Washington".  Also used by Dickens in "David Copperfield".
Subjoin means to add or append (an illustration, anecdote, etc.) at the end.
Sentence: Bunkerman subjoined a small blurb for his booklet to today's blog post.
Subjoin means

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Word for a Dull Tuesday

Word of the Day

"Euhemerism" - noun [$100] One comes across this word in studies of classical mythology.
Euhemerism means 1. the theory of Euhemeris that the mythologies of various gods arose out of the deification of dead heroes; 2. the theory that mythology is derived from history.
Sentence:  Euhemerism received strong support in modern times when the remains of ancient Troy were discovered in the 19th century.

Monday, September 19, 2011

More Blather from Barry

Barry (aka Obama) has brought forth a new wave a blather and bloviation to pander to his base, viz. unions, the hard left and government workers.

His vaunted "jobs" plan was touted to a joint session of Congress as something big, but it turned out simply to be a plan to tax the private sector to fund public sector jobs.  And the taxes were permanent, while the "jobs" were temporary.  Short term thinking, thy name is Barry.

He comes out with a new tax on 'Millionaires" - I wonder what his definition for that is?  Don't we already have a minimum tax that forces them to pay?  Would his tax get to big mouth Warren Buffet's billions?  I doubt it, unless he goes after the charitable deduction for them.

He already has some rather large tax increases coming in 2013 from the expiration of the Bush tax cuts and the new taxes for his health care boondoggle.

Does he want to cut spending?  Nope.  Are any government departments or even sub-departments headed for the dust bin?  Nope.  Will government "workers" get a pay cut?  Nope.

Barry is in campaign mode. He's done his polling.  Now he's doing the one thing he knows how to do - talk.  Blather.  Bloviate. Blab.

When one reads the news stories about his "plans", we find no details.  For example, the Buffet "Millionaires Tax".  Here is the gist of it:  (WSJ) "On the Buffett Rule, for example, the president is likely to stop short of saying what the minimum tax rate should be for millionaires or how much money the new policy would raise."  In other words, it's just a talking point now.

Why bother listening to him any more?


None.  The past few weeks have been much ado about nothing.

Word of the Day

"Pronate" - verb [$10]
Pronate means to rotate the hand and forearm so the palm faces backward or downward.
Sentence:  To indicate the judgment on Barry's plan, pronate your right hand and extend its thumb.  Yes, that's a fancy way to say, "give it thumbs down".

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Job Evaluation: Failure to Meet Objectives

The Census Bureau came out with hard numbers that permit us to evaluate the long term performance of Congress and the leadership class (to be called the Pharisees in the future).

WSJ (9/14/2011 online) "The income of a household considered to be at the statistical middle fell 2.3% to an inflation-adjusted $49,445 in 2010, which is 7.1% below its 1999 peak, the Census Bureau said."

FT (9/14/2011 online): “In 2009, the median full-time male worker aged 25-64 was earning $48,000 – roughly the same as in 1969 in real terms. Meanwhile, in the same 40-year period, the income of the top 2 per cent of working age men has jumped 75 per cent.”

These results are an unmitigated disaster.

The common people in America have lost ground in incomes during a period when the promises of the Pharisees in the Dark City have expanded.  For 40 years, the Pharisees urged the public to accept great changes in governmental policies based on theories. The promise was better living standards.

We can evaluate the success or failure of those policies with hard data:  they all failed.  Failure was bipartisan. The Pharisees in the Dark City and elsewhere got more [75% more!], but the plain people got less.

The 40 year social contract was a fraud to fool the people to accept risks to their lifestyles in exchange.  The Pharisees got a banquet, the plain people get to chew cud.

Here's a simple proposal to start to change to a better society:  cut the pay and benefits of Congress by 20%.  Cut the pay and benefits of Federal employees making over $100,000 by up to 20% [scaled to hit the higher levels with the full cut].  Require similar cuts for all government contractors.

Reason:  complete failure to meet objectives.

That's true shared sacrifice.  The leaders bear the pain, too.

Word of the Day

"Manqué" - adjective [$10] placed after the noun
Manqué means that might have been, but is not, unfulfilled (a comic actor manqué).
Sentence:  "Better lives from productivity increases" was a key part of a social contract manqué - the Pharisees are now in default.  Cut their pay.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Obvious Answer

Isn't the obvious answer to the structural problems in Europe the creation of a United States of Europe on the model of the federal system in the USA?

I know the French and Germans and other Europeans hate that idea, as it admits the USA is correct, but at some time one has to admit that reality exists.

By copying the USA constitutional structure and other institutions, Europe could let any "state" default and that would have no impact on the "nation".

Europe:  Just xerox the US Constitution and change the words a bit.  Now, would that not be easy?

Word of the Day

"Zymotic" - adjective [$10] archaic
Zymotic means of or relating to fermentation.
Sentence:  The zymotic roots of civilization are suggested by poems from Sumeria about the wonders of beer.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday Morning Ramblings

Let Greece default.  Why should that affect the Euro?  If Alabama defaulted, the dollar would not be affected one iota.

More research with hard data is crushing the global warming propaganda machine. Here's another link with more proof ->


As the authors are Serbian, they cannot be blackmailed by Al Gore's evil minions.

To reiterate:  major global temperature changes over decadal and century time periods are caused by changes in cloud cover, whihc are caused by cosmis ray flux changes, which are casued by soalr wind changes, whaic are caused by solar activity changes. Every link in this chian is backed by hard science and known physical processes, and is further backed by spectacularly significant correlation observations of solar activity measurements with global temperature.  Man is insignificant; carbon dioxide levels in the atmospere is an effect, not a cause.

The global warming scaremonger "scientists" are like patent medicine hawkers, telling a gullible public scare stories to get grant money.

To repeat, check out the Autobiography of Theodore Roosevelt.  I just read the section on his observations on how corruption worked in the New York Assembly in the late 19th century.  The methods seem to be in use now.  One technique is a form of blackmail:  introduce a law that might harm some corporations, then collect lobbying donations to stop it.  Has anything changed?

If you have private businesses, remember to pay your estimated taxes by September 15 (Thursday).

Some big cap stocks are getting intriguingly low priced.  As your writer is outside the prime spending years [24-55], dividends matter a lot.  I am looking for more solid stocks paying over 3% with reasonable prospects of future increases.

Word of the Day

"Fardel" - noun [$100] archaic; used in the Hamlet's soliloquy.
Fardel means a bundle, a burden.
Sentence:    The common man and woman bear fardels working in the fields and factories, while the hogs at the trough in the Dark City slurp the feed.

Friday, September 9, 2011

More Blather from the Bloviator

Barry offered some re-tread policies to carry the nation onward.  All he had to do was to read posts of the past two days for real solutions, and he failed.

Of his entire package, only $50 billion was offered to infrastructure, and that was rather vague.  The rest is borrowing money to invest in ... nothing.  Sigh ...

Meanwhile, Bank of America [aka BofA] plans to cut 40,000 jobs.  BofA already has terrible service.  The one job cut that might help that company won't be announced, viz., the firing of its CEO.

The Pharisees in the Dark City continue to rule and do nothing but posture to collect money from lobbyists.  The plain people deserve a new Square Deal.  Where is the 21st century Theodore Roosevelt?  Sigh ...

Book:  I suggest the Autobiography of Theodore Roosevelt for reading.  I started reading it a week ago.  The book has no ghost writer, being written by the great man himself in a plain, refreshing style.

Word of the Day

"Catharsis" - noun [$10]
Catharsis means 1. an emotional release in drama or art; 2. (Psychology) the process of freeing repressed emotion by association with the cause, and elimination by abreaction; 3. (Medical) purgation.
Sentence:  The quintessential achievement of catharis in drama has to be the scene in Sophocles' Oedipus the King when the truth finally is exposed to all, by the persistent questioning by Oedipus himself.  Moral:  some questions are best not ever asked.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Short Term Jobs Solution

America has a multi-generational opportunity now to build out its national infrastructure with ultra cheap money.  And America has a multi-generational need to provide the skeleton on which private industry can grow to offer more jobs for all Americans.  And America has a multi-generational need for growth that will hire more Americans for good jobs.

Not since the 1930s and 1950s has America expanded its national infrastructure.  Both those investments paid off handsomely.  The 1930s saw rural electrification, flood control, and parks construction that brought all America to the modern age and opened up the nation.  The 1950s saw highway construction that connected and bound the nation together.  After and during those periods, the incomes of the common man and woman all across America increased year after year in real growth for an entire generation.

The second decade of the 21st century should become a similar period of building national strength to support growth for the rest of the 21st century.

Here is the program.

I.  Remarkably low interest rates for long term bonds can fund this program.  The bonds will be paid from increased revenues that growth will provide.  The US Treasury should begin selling $1 Trillion in 10 to 50 year bonds with with maturities distributed from 2022 to 2062 so as to make the cash debt service payments approximately equal every year. 

II.  Sell both fixed rate and TIPs.

III.  Create an infrastructure super committee to choose the projects within guidelines. Committee members swear to have no conflicts of interest and must approve each project personally.  Criminal penalties and personal liability will apply to any member who lies about any conflict of interest.  An inspector general will review all contracts and performance. 

IV.  Override ALL environmental laws and prohibit any judicial interference for these projects.  Decisions of the super-committee are final.

V.  Request the public and private sector to submit proposals for projects, to be considered along with projects from the super committee.

VI.  Project sectors:  highway buildout, rail buildout, fiber optics buildout, gas and electric transmission line buildout, airport buildout, air traffic control system buildout, cell phone and wireless Internet buildout, port buildout, parks buildout, flood control buildout, etc. (software included).

VII. Objective:  connect and bind all America with these systems with special attention to the small cities and rural areas, that great expanse of America that will be the regions of future growth.

VIII.  Require all contracts to have fixed prices and fixed completion times.  Provide bonuses for coming in on time or early and on or under budget.  Put penalties on contracts that are late or over budget.

IX.  Require any imported goods or services used therein to bear an excise tax equal to the proportional share of the long term cost of government divided by GDP, currently about 20%.  This would be in lieu of the long term job reforms posted yesterday.

X.  All projects must commence by year end, 2013.  All projects must finish by year end 2021.  The entire $1 trillion will be pre-funded by bond sales commencing as soon as possible.

We want a flexible national infrastructure that will work as the world makes the transition from the gasoline engine to other transportation motive forces (likely within 50 years).  The infrastructure envisioned would support rail, electricity and natural gas as motive means, and would support alternatives to physical transportation by modern communication technologies and better distributrion networks.

JOBS:  that $1 trillion would provide jobs for millions of construction workers and manufacturing and service industries for at least a decade.  That will re-start the American economy.  As this infrastructure is built-out, private industry will use it and find new needs to be met and new demand for new ideas in new industries.

Revenues from these new industries and jobs will pay for the debt service on the bonds beginning in 2022.

Cost:  $1 trillion funded at 3% costs $30 billion per year in interest from 2012 under principal begins to repaid in 2022.  Thereafter, the cost is $43 billion per year to pay interst and principal.  This amount of debt service is easily achieved from tax revenues of new economic growth in the nation.

Hmmm ... this is rather cheap.  Maybe we should consider $2 trillion.  $3 trillion sounds letter.  Sounds good:  costs just $90-120 billion per year.

[Consider the cost of the endless Afghanistan program = about $100 billion per year]

Let's do it - a $3 trillion Build America Program!

Word of the Day

"Euergetism" - noun [$10,000] alt. spelling "Evergetism".  From an ancient Greek word meaning "I do good things."
Euergetism means the practice of notables to distribute part of their wealth to the community of 'hoi polloi', rather than to individuals (clientelism).
Sentence:  Let's encourage euergetism for today's billionaires:  buy the long term Treasury bonds to fund the build-out of America.  Do some good by making permanent investments, rather than putting all your money in Philistine hedge funds that simply trade.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The Long Term Job Solution

The problem that America has with lack of jobs needs both a short term and a long term solution.  Below is the long term solution that Barry should propose tomorrow night.  He won't.  He's part of the problem and seems to have no vision for the future of America.

The Job Solution - Long Term

Stop taxing jobs. That means no more taxes paid on employment income for Social Security, Medicare, unemployment benefits or any other direct or indirect tax on jobs. This will lower the cost of hiring people significantly.

Eliminate the connection between health care and jobs. Tying health care to a job is a Faustian bargain: one loses a job and health care and the same time – horribly risky for people. Those silver chains both increases the cost of employment enormously and prevents people from moving to either better jobs or starting their own businesses.

Social Security, Medicare, all other job taxes AND a new National Shared Heath Care Benefit should be funded by a new Value-added or Sales tax on goods (especially imported goods) and many services (especially imported services). Consumers of imported goods and services now get a free ride. Nothing embedded in the value of imported goods & services helps fund the government or provides benefits to American workers. Shifting the funding for all those programs will make consumers of imports pay a fair share to support the New American System. See The Tax Solution for more details. In this New American System, cost of employing Americans in America will be far, far less.

Eliminate all tax subsidies for equipment and machinery (accelerated depreciation, etc.). Eliminate all overseas income tax loopholes. In the New American System, the plain American people are preferred over machines or foreign labor.

Eliminate tax deductions for any compensation above the salary of the President of the United States. Why the President’s salary? We have to draw the line somewhere and that’s a highly recognizable, bright line all can see. That change will lower the costs of employing many people at middle income wages/salaries vs. an executive suite or princely contractors. Eliminate tax loopholes for billionaire money managers.

Require any corporation wishing to bring in immigrants for so-called "hard to fill" jobs first offer the job broadly at a 10% pay increase AND offer job training for any special requirements; provide an arbitration board to protect against unfair or excessively tailored job descriptions.

Eliminate all Federal & State regulations that kick in at some number of jobs, like 50. Those hold down the number of jobs and encourage using high paid employees supported by machines, vs. simple jobs for more people.

Eliminate the R&D tax credit and replace it with a Job Training credit: US companies get the credit for the costs of training workers whom they hire with skills needed for the jobs; if the new hires are laid off within five years, the credit should be recaptured.

The new value-Added Tax will apply to services, too, thus forcing those using foreign labor or foreign contracts services to pay the tax for the retirement and health care benefits for Americans.

All these policies will lower the cost of hiring plain people in America and increase the demand for people vs. machines. And it frees the entrepreneurial energy of millions of people chained to dead end jobs by "benefits". Entrepreneurs will be more free to hire people as hiring becomes simple and direct, with no red tape. The cost of replacing people with machines goes up. By equating the W-2 worker with the 1099 worker, employers will want to hire more people to lock in their services; there will be NO benefit to keeping people on 1099 contracts.

Word of the Day

"Fard" - noun, verb, transitive [$100] Archaic.
Fard means (noun) facial cosmetics; (verb) to apply cosmetics to (the face).
Sentence:  Will Barry offer new ideas?  Nope, he's going to fard the hogs at the trough.