Site for Free Markets and Free People
Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Sunday, December 28, 2008
Israel Calls up 6,500 Reservists
It looks like Israel is not willing to wait for an Obama administration to bail them out - I don't blame them.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
"Youth Riots" Hit Sweden
Global Warming Dissenters Speak Out
Meanwhile, the U.S. is on track to have its coldest December in years. Where's Al Gore?
MN Canvassing Board Now Determining Voter Intent
Friday, December 19, 2008
Government Loses Out From Bonus Reductions
Obama Pushing Companies To Switzerland
As a result, with this threat overhanging many American companies, we now have several large American firms relocating to Switzerland - Tyco, Weatherford, Foster Wheeler, Transocean, and now today, Noble (all in the last two weeks). Some of these companies are also considering moving their people in their HQ to Switzerland as well.
I have some advice for Obama. Instead of penalizing companies for moving their HQ outside the US, why not reward companies for staying in, and/or relocating TO THE US? If Obama were to reward in the form of a corporate tax cut (say from 35% to 25%), I can guarantee more companies would relocate to the US and more others would decide to stay.
Will one of his advisors please teach the man a little Econ 101?
Dems Very Close to Finalizing Stolen Election
So it's down to 2 - my guess is the challenges and counting all stop once Franken takes the lead, at which point, it will be validated. Washington state, part II. Just another reason government is completely untrustworthy.
The Coleman campaign issued the following statement:
First, the board is making steady progress as they work through all of the challenged ballots. As you are likely aware, because of the way this process has been structured, all of the Franken challenges were considered first and now the board is working their way through the Coleman challenges. Our campaign brought around 1000 challenges before the board. We are in the process of withdrawing approximately 400 of those, and because the board did not have time to pull them out of the line-up before today's meeting, today you'll likely see the numbers flip upside down as a significant number of those withdrawals go back into the Franken column. Because of the timing, the withdrawn challenges that will provide additional Coleman votes will not be awarded until later. This will cause a temporary flip today that will be righted once all the ballots have been reviewed and withdrawn challenges reinstated, likely by tomorrow.
We fully and confidently expect that by the time the review process is complete, the vote totals will right themselves, and Senator Coleman will be ahead, as he has been throughout this recount process.
We also are expecting the board to deal with the issue of duplicate ballots soon. As we've said, we have serious concerns about a number of instances throughout the state where double counting has occurred, as both duplicates and the originals these duplicates were intended to replace were counted separately during the recount. The agreement reached before the recount to deal with this issue has now been proven not to work since numerous local officials did not follow the statute election night. Attached is a brief letter we sent to the canvassing board. It explains that their current path will result in the double count of ballots, which violates the tenet "one person, one vote". We are committed to making sure that no one person's vote counts more than any others. It's a pretty simple concept, and it needs to be protected.
So, as we've said all along, it's a long process, it's a methodical process, and we are committed to making sure that it is done right.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Palin vs Kennedy
Will a similar investigation be done on Caroline Kennedy?
I think we know the answer to that one.
Global Warming and the Archimedes Principle
"When the Arctic Ocean ice melts, it never raises sea level because floating ice is floating ice, because it's displacing water," O'Brien said. "When the ice melts, sea level actually goes down.
"I call it a fourth grade science experiment. Take a glass, put some ice in it. Put water in it. Mark level where water is. Let it melt. After the ice melts, the sea level didn't go up in your glass of water. It's called the Archimedes Principle."
He called sea level changes a "major scare tactic used by the global warming people."
From Q&O Blog.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Obama Headed Down the New Deal Path
As we saw from Boston's Big Dig, these projects will be wildly popular with general contractors, who thrive off of inefficient government spending. But for those of us who will be forced to pay for it, it'll be another bad day in America.
No Recession for NY Government
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Limbaugh Responds to Colin Powell
Here is Colin Powell telling the Republican Party what to do after he voted for Obama! I know what really has Colin Powell upset, it's because I said his endorsement of Obama was about race, and I'm not supposed to say those things. These things are supposed to go unsaid. The Republican Party nominated Powell's perfect candidate.Rush is exactly right. Powell is not, and never has been, a Republican. He was never a good Secretary of State. He threw his own President under the bus on Iraq. He then nearly committed a crime by withholding information that his subordinate was the real 'leaker' in the Valerie Plame nonsense. And now somehow Colin Powell is supposed to be the spokesman for the Republican Party? (Btw, the Republicans have lost the last 2 elections precisely because they refused to listen to conservative leaders and instead tried to be Democrat-lite.)
All these moderates, Bill Weld, all these moderates that crossed the aisle and voted for Obama, they got their ideal candidate, and they got their ideal campaign in McCain. Once McCain was nominated as the Republican candidate, largely by independents and Democrats voting in Republican primaries, Colin Powell waited 'til the last minute, when it would do the most damage to McCain and the Republicans and endorsed Obama.
So if we try to understand Powell's thinking, which is difficult since it's incoherent, we should have all voted for McCain in the primaries, and once he was nominated, we should have voted for Obama for president. That's what we should have all done, if you listen to what Powell said on CNN yesterday.
Economic Stimulus: Japan Style
August 1992: 10.7 trillion yen ($85 billion)
April 1993: 13.2 trillion yen ($117 billion)
September 1993: 6.2 trillion yen ($59 billion)
February 1994: 15.3 trillion yen ($148 billion)
September 1995: 14.2 trillion yen ($137 billion)
April 1998: 16.7 trillion yen ($128 billion)
November 1998: 23.9 trillion yen ($195 billion)
November 1999: 18 trillion yen ($147 billion)
All told, the Japanese government spent over $1 trillion on government spending and infrastructure projects. The public spending replaced private investment and instead of economic growth, the country suffered through stagnation and a massive deficit. I hope Obama's paying attention because the new New Deal will likely not be any different than the original New Deal or the Japanese New Deal.
Monday, December 15, 2008
NY Judge Wants Bailout of Madoff Investors
The problem: since the Securities Investor Protection Corporation founding by Congress in 1970, it has advanced a total of $507 million to duped investors. The Madoff scheme runs about 100 times that amount. If the government ok's this, they might as well bail out every individual or corporation who has ever lost money on an investment, wager or poker game.
Madoff Ponzi Scheme 2nd Worst Ever
Gore Continues Global Warming Nonsense
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Google Admits Staff Chooses Search Results
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Bush Goes Along With UAW (aka: Wimpy)
The union's counteroffer was that it would bring down labor costs in 2011, when its current contracts run out. Maybe we missed something, but we thought GM and Chrysler were facing bankruptcy now, not in three years. As Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said on the Senate floor, that sounds like "taxpayer money today for reforms that may or may not come tomorrow."
Good for Senate Republicans. Shame on Democrats and President Bush if they throw money at a certain flushing of more taxpayer dollars down the union toilet.
Meanwhile, QandO points out that if Harry Reid had any leadership skills whatsoever, the 60 votes were there since 10 Republicans actually went along with the union bailout. (Again, this was a Democrat leadership issue.)
Friday, December 12, 2008
Franken Close to Stealing Election
According to the Weekly Standard, this nonsense would give Franken a 4 vote victory. Once that happens of course, the votes have to stop because the Democrat will have finally moved into the lead. Expect it to happen...and the GOP are too spineless to stop it.
UAW Blames Southern GOP Senators
And after playing a game of chicken, the UAW appears like it might win, with President Bush considering using TARP funds to rescue the inefficient, mismanaged U.S. auto companies.
By the way, I'm curious why Congress isn't interested in finding out how much Gettelfinger makes or how he travels to Washington, as they were with the CEOs of the Big 3.
Oh Come, Emanuel
UAW Says No Thanks
One interesting comment from Harry Reid:
"I dread looking at Wall Street tomorrow. It's not going to be a pleasant sight."
Since when has Reid given two thoughts about Wall Street? Aren't they just a bunch of evil, corrupt, greedy, overpaid villains? If Reid really cared about Wall Street and the stock market, he could lower income taxes, extend the existing Bush tax cuts, or lower capital gains and dividend taxes. He could also refuse the nationalization of health care, the carbon tax and many other anti-business programs his party is pushing.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
FDIC Chair: GOP "Resents Helping Others"
“I’ve heard the stories of people who are suffering and can stay in their homes if there is just a small adjustment to their loans. There are some people in the Republican Party who resent the idea of helping others. But the market is broken right now, and unless we intervene, these people and the economy won’t be helped."
So Bair can now divine the intent of Republicans as well. Bush should fire her as his last civic duty in office.
Minnesota Going Back to Selected Machine Counts?
On election night, a Minneapolis district accidentally ran through 129 ballots for Franken twice, according to elections director Cindy Reichert. During the hand recount, the district came up 133 votes short for Franken. So the Dems want the original (wrong) count to be validated. So why bother with the hand recount in the first place??
Ann Coulter has a good question: Why do guys named Al always try to steal elections?
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
If the Auto Bailout is so Important...
Obama's Odd Choice of Words
I'm trying to think of why someone might be saddened by this. Perhaps if that someone were a close friend maybe? Maybe someone that they sincerely trusted? We know Barack is a good friend of the governor, so maybe that's the reason. Anyway, maybe it's just me, but I think it's a strange choice of words to use.
But don't worry about Barack. If there's one thing he knows, it's disowning people. He's already disowned the Governor quicker than he could disown his racist grandmother and a lot quicker than he disowned his racist pastor. Yea that's been done.
Loan Mods Already a Huge Failure
"The results, I confess, were somewhat surprising, and not in a good way." Of mortgages modified in the early part of this year, more than 35% had gone at least 60 days delinquent again after just six months, and a full 53% were 30 days delinquent or more. By eight months, this default rate had climbed to 58%. Second quarter modifications are on track to be nearly as ugly, with more than 50% of borrowers at least 30 days delinquent at the six-month mark. Come to think of it, these stinkers are going south so quickly that perhaps the FDIC's plan actually will protect taxpayers -- there won't be much left to insure after these toxic loans blow up in the first six months after modification.
Of course, that would mean that fewer foreclosures would be avoided, which is supposed to be the point of this exercise. For her part, FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair says that "The OCC's data on redefaults raises more questions than answers because it fails to define, in any meaningful way, the modifications that have redefaulted." In politics, when you don't like the data, merely wish it away.
Unfortunately for us taxpayers, Bair is perhaps the biggest proponent of restructuring all delinquent mortgages, which will leave the housing industry in shambles for a longer period of time and will present a nice tax bill for Treasury. One observation is that, whenever the name of Sheila Bair comes up in the press, she is always labled "Republican." I suppose it's possible to have such a dim-witted Republican, but when your proposals can't be distinguished from Nancy Pelosi's or Ted Kennedy's, it's hard to believe that she is anything but a big-government Liberal.
Pelosi Opposes Welch as "Car Czar"
I don't know if Welch would want such a position, but I can guarantee he would be far better than anybody that Washington could appoint.
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
Dem Rep. Lloyd Doggett to Close Tax Incentive for Banks?
Why anyone is trying to prevent this type of banking consolidation precisely when we need it most is absurd...but then again, it's just another day in the life of a clueless-on-the-economy Democrat.
Illinois Governor Tries to Sell Obama Seat
The Wrong Person for TARP
I fear we’re likely to see a document that aims to turn the TARP plan from a program aimed at easing the financial crisis into some back-door borrower-relief scheme that will only delay the pain, but will make everyone feel a lot better in the meantime. Maybe I’m wrong, of course.
We’ll know on Dec. 10. Fortunately, Warren is just one of five members—three Democrats and two Republicans—of the panel. Less fortunately, the group thought it would be a good idea to put her in charge.
A professor with a contempt for consumer finance companies - not exactly the person you want in charge of trying to help save the finance industry.
Sunday, December 07, 2008
New England Border Chief Hired Illegals
I don't think most Americans have problems with expanding visas for immigrants to come here legally, but they do have problems with senior government officials who decide the laws don't apply to them.
Tax on Belching/Flatulent Cows?
Friday, December 05, 2008
533K Jobs Lost
Not good news, but it does point to our ability to adapt rather quickly to dynamic events.
Thursday, December 04, 2008
Paulson's New Plan to Stop Home Price Declines
Best case scenario, in our opinion, the new plan will slow the rate at which house prices are falling and make the "adjustment" to the new reality less violent. It will probably also stretch out the time it takes the country to work through the crisis (by postponing the inevitable). Given the rate at which the economy is deteriorating, however, shallower-but-longer may just be better than deeper-and-shorter.
I disagree with his final sentence; this is what happened as a result of the New Deal. In short, a 10-year depression is really not worth it. Or ask Japan. A 20-year stagnation is not worth it. Let the pain happen and let the economy correct on its own. The economy will survive. And a year (or less) from now, it will mostly be behind us instead of still dangling in front of us.
B of A CEO: Accounting Rules Big Contributor to Crisis
Mark-to-market accounting rules require banks to value their assets based on a price they could immediately fetch, rather than their long-term value. That's resulted in absurd short-term valuations, Lewis said.
Another problem is capital provisioning policies. “This idea of building reserves in the bad times and reducing reserves in the good times … I don't know how big a squirrel's brain is, but a squirrel knows better than that,” he said.
Schwarzenegger Flops on Tax, Budget Increases
A big part of the problem is the Terminator himself. When Mr. Schwarzenegger ran for Governor in 2003 amid the last California fiscal crisis, he promised a new ethic of spending restraint, no new taxes and less debt financing. Six years later none of that has happened. Once California crawled out of that last fiscal emergency, Mr. Schwarzenegger made one more stab at budget reform, got clobbered at the ballot box, and has since given in and let the budget grow to $144.5 billion -- a 40% hike over four years.
Democrats refuse even to trim the budget. Neither they nor the Governor have proposed shutting down a single government program. Many California voters also seem to live under this delusion that government is free. The state has a debt of $60 billion and the worst credit rating among the 50 states. But in November Californians approved a $10 billion bond for a high-speed rail system that will add $600 million in annual debt servicing costs to the state budget every year until the middle of the century.
If California Democrats are so hell-bent on tax-and-spending California into the ground, why would anyone possibly believe that their ideological brothers and sisters in Washington will be any different?
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
Chrysler Vice Chair: Failure Could Spark Depression
Second, if he truly believes what he says, perhaps they should work a little harder to point it out to the unions, whose workers make 75% more than those at factories producing Hondas, Toyotas, Nissans, etc. In fact, a chapter 11 would likely make the firms more competitive, not less.
Obama: No Windfall Oil Profits Tax
Pirates Fire on US Cruise Ship
Tuesday, December 02, 2008
Memo to Media: SecDef Gates is Not a Republican
Capitol Visitor Center Finally Opens...Way Over Budget
Sen. DeMint does not like it, saying that it is also a generally Left-leaning center that omits some integral attributes about the origination of our government.
Jews in India Tortured Before Death
Of all the bodies, the Israeli victims bore the maximum torture marks. It was clear that they were killed on the 26th itself (the first day of the Islamist terrorist attack). It was obvious that they were tied up and tortured before they were killed. It was so bad that I do not want to go over the details even in my head again."
"Bombay has a long history of terror. I have seen bodies of riot victims, gang war and previous terror attacks like bomb blasts. But this was entirely different. It was shocking and disturbing."
The terrorists have taught us all another valuable lesson. On 9/11, they taught us never to allow a hijacked plane again. Now they've taught us to fight back against terrorists, even if it means charging a gunman without a weapon. And just as in the case of appeasement, people need to realize that being an obedient hostage no longer works.
Franken Still Not Giving Up Trying to Steal Election
I'll give Democrats one thing - they won't give up even when they lose. Republicans could learn a thing or two about their ruthless motivations. Heck, it got them a Washington state governor seat a few years ago without any negative repercussions.
Earth Cooling For Second Straight Year
The problem is that politicians (and journalists) refuse to look at data. Otherwise we wouldn't be proposing trillion-dollar solutions to "combat global warming" or proposing spending trillions on New Deal problems that will worsen the economy.
Monday, December 01, 2008
Idiots in Bollywood
CA Republicans Hold Fast Against Tax Increases
Republicans are refusing to raise taxes. Good for them - if states can drastically expand its government labor force during the boom years, it should certainly cut them during recessions. I hope the CA GOP stays true to its word.
OPEC: $70-90 Oil "Very Reasonable"
Thanks for the offer, Abdalla, but with oil at a recent price of under $50/barrel, I find the market price even more reasonable.
Obama Caused the Stock Market Rally?
George never mentioned what caused the 20% market crash in the two weeks following the Obama election - or the fact that stores sold merchandise at 60-80% discounts on Friday - perhaps topics for another day.