Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Vote

We can't let the country swing back to the extreme right. How many more times can this occur. We know what is going to happen and its nothing positive.

CNN: Democrats see hope, Republicans temper expectations for Tuesday vote

Nikkei Opens Lower On Monday

Reuters: Nikkei falls 0.3 percent, hits fresh 7-week low

'Indestructible Man'

For its genre, 50s horror, this is a good movie. Lon Chaney stars.

No More Pontiacs

Never really liked the cars anyhow. They did look cool in the 60s.

Yahoo: Pontiac, maker of muscle cars, ends after 84 years

Trick Or Treat

Hey, we are getting more trick or treaters.

Many more than last year actually.

This is great news. It means I don't have to eat tons of candy, as I have no will power once I try it.

GOP Plans Attack On Environmentalists

Hold onto your hats, environmentalism is about to take a big step backwards.

Call it a GOP windfall. There are definite distinctions between the two parties.

LA Times: GOP plans attacks on the EPA and climate scientists
If the GOP wins control of the House next week, senior congressional Republicans plan to launch a blistering attack on the Obama administration's environmental policies, as well as on scientists who link air pollution to climate change.


The GOP's fire will be concentrated especially on the administration's efforts to use the Environmental Protection Agency's authority over air pollution to tighten emissions controls on coal, oil and other carbon fuels that scientists say contribute to global warming.

Marshall Amp Factory Tour

Tea Stomper

Tea Party stomper Timothy Profitt is facing fourth degree assault charges.

I'm wondering if the person who was assaulted will file a civil case as well. I hope she does...

Kentucky.com: Former Rand Paul volunteer scheduled to appear in court Nov. 18
Timothy Mark Profitt, 53, is charged with fourth-degree assault, a misdemeanor, for stepping on the shoulder and neck of Lauren Valle, a MoveOn.org activist who was trying to get close to Republican candidate Rand Paul to present him with a mock award.


Fourth-degree assault carries a maximum penalty of 12 months in jail, a $500 fine or a combination of both.

Water On The Moon

Clip with a nice thorough discussion on the discovery of water on the moon.

Live Science: Water on the Moon: So What? So Everything!

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Coming Up On Wall Street

Good morning. Welcome to Halloween. The kids are expected to be out trick or treating beginning at 3 this afternoon. I'm ready for them. I got candy and lots of it. I extended my usual 2.5 mile or so walk to around 4.0 miles this morning. It was chilly and dark out but as I write this, the sun is beginning to pop out. Only a few stubborn trees have green leaves, a growing percentage are naked, and most trees are in the yellow orange leaf range. The few trees that have vibrant red leaves are just stunning. I have to rake today, but any little thing could make me put it off.

This is going to be one little monstrous week. Wall Street is looking for a Republican win, the specifics of a Fed plan to stimulate our under-stimulated economy, and a jobs report that shows some improvement. Unfortunately they are going to get all three. As you know, I do not favor the Tea Party one little tiny itty bitty bit. I'll take two out of three thank you very much. That is not going to happen. It is rare to have miracles on election day, and I would say impossible for a massive miracle. The midterm elections are always an assault on the incumbent President. Its common. Take odd consolation in the knowledge that your portfolio will probably grow.

CNN: Stocks: Betting on a triple play
...the Federal Reserve's meeting, the midterm elections and the release of the government's October jobs report.


"...it's still the weakest recovery we've seen in generations..."


Wall Street is banking on a win for Republicans...

'For Your Love'

The Yardbirds

Saturday, October 30, 2010

PRS Guitar Factory Tour

'White Zombie'

First Spanish Siesta Competition

Spain recently held its first siesta competition. How cool is that, a country that gives out prizes for sleeping. Now that's something I would like to compete in. I think I will go into training immediately.

This is anathema to the American psyche. We have to get a minimum of two things accomplished at once. We multitask. There's no time for sleeping and when there is, we sleep poorly or too little.

Go on, take a nap...

Sky News: Snoring Ecuadorian Wins Siesta Competition
Unemployed security worker Pedro Soria Lopez managed to fall asleep for 17 minutes in a busy Madrid shopping centre, netting him the prestigious title of siesta champion and the £890 prize money.


Despite a runner-up sleeping for 18 minutes, Mr Lopez pipped him at the post due to his impressive 70-decibel snores - roughly the same volume as a person talking loudly.

Amar'e Top Ten

Your Weekly Address

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Ramble

Good morning. Spent the morning doing my 2.5 mile walk and then some yoga. The yoga is helpful for my sore back. The headstand and the shoulder stand really do the trick for my back. Go figure.

We will work on the house this weekend. There is some lighter remodeling type of work and a tons of leaves that need to be raked up. We will pick out a new sink and a new faucet for the kitchen. It will be pretty standard, a stainless steel sink and a Delta faucet.

It will interesting to see how the Washington DC Restore Sanity Convention will pan out. I wonder what the numbers will be. Clearly its occurring to try to stir interest in the Democratic Party. The Democrats really seem to be quite happy to role over on this election. Could it be a plan of some kind. It looks like Angle will win in Nevada. That is unbelievable in my opinion. I didn't think she had a chance, she was so uniformed. Being uniformed is a big plus for new politicians these days, the dumber, the better.

The upcoming week will prove to be extremely compelling. Two events will alter our lives for the next extended period. The Fed will issue its plan for spurring the economy along, and the elections will present us with a new cast. The cast is shaping up to be a group that is off the charts and the wall. That is not going to help. The country will be in even more muck.

'Use Somebody'

Kings Of Leon

Friday, October 29, 2010

Baritone Guitars

'Hi, I'm A Tea-Partier'

GOPlease

Interesting to note that with the GOP expected to win big next week, there is a deluge of anti-gay rhetoric from the GOP. You would think that this is the big bad wrong direction that the country is allegedly taking. Yet there it is. The comments from the GOP are off the wall. I like what actress Betty White said the other day. She said and I paraphrase, that people ought to mind their own business any worry about how they themselves get on and about in the world.

The New Civil Rights Movement: Extreme Anti-Gay Hate: Texas GOP Platform on Homosexuality

Evening Tribune: GOP gov hopeful Paladino makes anti-gay remarks

Newser: Anti-Gay Death Threat Traced to GOP Senator's Office

Extreme Drought Prediction

Scientists are predicting a drier earth in the future due to climate change. Scientists are also saying it will occur pretty much everywhere including the Western Hemisphere. Alaska is a safe bet though.

Live Science: Extreme Drought Ahead, Scientists Predict
The likely culprit: warming temperatures linked to climate change.

They found most of the Western Hemisphere, along with large parts of Eurasia, Africa and Australia, will be at risk of extreme drought this century.

The study also finds that drought risk can be expected to decrease this century across much of Northern Europe, Russia, Canada and Alaska, as well as some areas in the Southern Hemisphere.

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Finding New Earths

If there's one thing that the future holds that is in the realm of absolutely amazing, it would be the discovery of another earth-like planet.

A new study raises the possibility of this occurring.

I hope it happens in my lifetime. We need something that would turn our collective attentive away from our preoccupied collective self indulgence and move it towards something more dynamic and challenging. Something that will move humanity away from the thick clogging muck of its present worldly activity.

CS Monitor: Other Earths? A new estimate raises the odds of finding them.
A new estimate predicts that for every four sun-like stars, one should host at least one planet with anywhere from one-half to twice Earth's mass.


The Kepler spacecraft, which was launched in March 2009 and trails Earth in its orbit around the sun, is designed to detect Earth-size planets in "life-friendly orbits" around distant stars.


...the team calculated that 23 percent of sun-like stars should host an Earth-size planet.


The vast majority of extrasolar planets found so far have been so-called hot Jupiters – massive planets whose orbit times often are measured in a handful of days.

The Market On Friday

Good morning. Another week rips by and here we are at the weekend. Ordinarily I would say great, but my weekends are all about fixing up this old house. Not doing a real lot this weekend, but the leaves need raking. We are up to our eyeballs in leaves.

At 8:30 a.m. futures are modestly down, oil is down, and the dollar is mixed. All indications point to a drop.

According to the financial articles, it is "quantitative easing" that is the real force affecting the markets right now, not third quarter results. There are many "ifs" floating around. What if the Fed reduces its quantitative easing plans or increases it, all for various reasons. Allegedly this is foremost in investors minds.

CNN: Stocks poised to open lower
Investors will take in a host of economic reports Friday, including an advance reading on third-quarter U.S. gross domestic product before the market opens.


The dollar strengthened against the euro and British pound, but fell against the Japanese yen.


Oil futures for December delivery were off by 74 cents to $81.45 a barrel.

'I'll Feel A Whole Lot Better'

The Byrds

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Nikkei Opens Lower On Friday

Reuters: Nikkei down 0.4 percent on yen rise, SMFG up 1.1 percent

'The Insects' Christmas'

Woodworking: How To Square Lumber

Very nicely done...

'Caregiver'

Sons of Anarchy

This show was recommended to me by a deep operative. This is episode 3 season 3. We shall see.

New Colon Cancer Screening

The colonoscopy is no fun even though they try to make it fun with absolutely amazing drugs. I didn't really say that, did I?

If you are over 50, its time.

Reuters: New colon cancer test works without colonoscopy

We Know

Anyone surprised? I didn't think so.

Yahoo: Tests warned of cement troubles before BP blowout

CNN - Time Traveler In Chaplin Film

The Daily Show - Obama

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Obama Pt. 1
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Barack Obama Pt. 2
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Credit Card Landscape

Another leg of the economy is the credit card. People with jobs and decent income are now benefiting from seriously low introductory rates and very low transfer rates extended over many months.

On the other hand the people more on the fringe of the economy have far less options with a credit card. Banks are not interested in risk right now. We need more jobs, goes without saying.

The recession has sobered many people about using credit. I recently made a purchase on a credit card but here's the caveat. I have one year to pay off the balance at 0% interest. So in my mind its not so bad. Its really the only way I would use a card at this point, that could always change though...

CS Monitor: Credit card chasm: Some get great rates. Others cut off.
...Citibank is offering 0 percent introductory balance transfers for a full 21 months. Even when you factor in Citibank’s 3 percent balance transfer fee and ongoing APR, this means that someone with good credit can borrow money for 2 years at about a 3 percent rate.


As millions of Americans are getting cut-off and written-off by their credit card companies due to job losses, the contrast between the “have jobs” and “have-nots” is getting to be especially stark.


...it may be years before credit card issuers forget about the excesses of the credit bubble and throw out a lifeline to fringe borrowers again.

The Market On Thursday

Good morning. I am running late again. I went to bed too late so its my own damn fault. Rehearsed last night with The Jim Sande Ensemble. We sounded pretty good I must say.

At 8:35 a.m. futures are modestly higher, the dollar is down, and oil is slightly higher. In addition the weekly initial jobless claims numbers is down 21,000 from last week. One might lean towards the market being fluffy at the opening and possibly longer.

Investors are poised to see what kind of action the Fed will take to stimulate our under stimulated economy. The announcement comes on November 3rd.

CNN: Stocks set to open higher
Speculation over just how big of a move the Fed is going to make has dominated talk on Wall Street.


Stocks will likely remain on a rollercoaster leading up to and probably after the Fed announcement on Nov. 3.


The dollar fell against the euro, Japanese yen and the British pound.


Oil for December delivery gained 11 cents to $82.07 a barrel.

'Don't Laugh At Me'

Howlin' Wolf

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

'Pied Piper Of Hutzovina'

If you like Gogol Bordello, this film is for you.

A Fire Tornado

The Daily Show - McCain's Been Saying D.C.'s Broken Since 1989

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Indecision 2010 - Extreme Makeover DC Edition
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorRally to Restore Sanity

GOP Candidate: Gay Marriage Like Marrying A Table Or A Clock

 

Frago 242

Take a breath, and watch a clip about torture in Iraq.

Guardian UK: Iraq war logs: Frago 242 – a license to torture

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Food Stamps

Two things contribute to the highly increased use food stamps, the recession (of course) and eased eligibility.

There's is far far less social stigma out there for using them. People get it, they understand. If by any chance you need help with food, look into food stamps. We don't need to starve for any reason.

One wonders if a Republican/Tea Party administration with its emphasis on killing social programs, would have allowed for this food subsidy. I think this is a very salient question because one would also suspect that people from all walks of life including party affiliation are using food stamps. I wonder how many Republican Party members who use food stamps will be voting GOP in November. Cut off your nose to spite your face...

CS Monitor: Recession officially over, use of food stamps stays at record high
The recession introduced millions of Americans to food stamps – many of them, like Hayden, for the first time. Now, more than a year after the recession is officially said to have ended, more Americans than ever are on food stamps, and the trend is higher still.


Not only did the recession boost the number of people who qualify for food stamps because of layoffs and reduced incomes, says Ms. Secor, the ensuing Recovery Act increased food stamp benefits, provided states with extra funding for administering the program, and, most important, eased requirements and access, making many more Americans eligible.

The Market On Wednesday

Good morning. Its balmy and drizzly rainy here in upstate NY. I increased my walking distance this morning, ever so slightly. I have found that walking is a very good morning exercise for the "aging" male, namely me. Can't really comfortably jog first thing, but walking is so gradual. It feels right.

At 8:20 a.m. futures are moderately down, the dollar is up, and the price of oil is down. This would be the market will open down trifecta, and beyond that, well odds are more neg than pos. But you never know.

I will skip the news on third quarter reports and economic reports, and jump to what I believe is the most important highlight from CNN's market article. This would be the news that the US Geological Survey is now saying that the potential oil reserve in Alaska is 90% less than previously estimated. Blow me away here. So much for drill baby drill. Sarah Palin can stick that in her wool knit moose cap. Its almost comical if it weren't so tragically poignant.

CNN: Stocks poised to fall at open
The hot topic in the market remains speculation about how much the Fed will attempt to stimulate the economy at next week's policy meeting in a process called quantative easing...


A report from the Commerce Department on durable goods was due before the market open, while new home sales data were due after the opening bell.


The drop came after the U.S. Geological Survey submitted a revised estimate for the amount of conventional, undiscovered oil in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. The agency said untapped oil reserves are about 90% less than previously estimated.

'I Need A Lover That Won't Drive Me Crazy'

Pat Benatar

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Boston

The Celtics are destroying the Heat. Mid third quarter the score is 55 - 40. Its just the first game of the season.

Nikkei Opens Higher On Wednesday

Reuters: Nikkei rises 0.6 percent; eyes on yen, earnings

'Unplanned Parenthood'

House

TPMtv - Rand Paul Talks Stomping

Curious, but there is no mention in Paul's talk here that indicates any empathy for the victim, or any expression that what occurred was beyond wrong, when in fact it was barbaric.

He's playing a role.

No Means No

Which brain wins out, little brain or big brain. For many its the little brain.

Live Science: Why No Doesn't Mean No to Some Men
According to 2000 report by the Department of Justice, 17.6 percent of American women are the victims of a completed or attempted rape at some point in their lives.

CNN - Clarence Thomas Was A Binge Drinker, Porn User

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Tariq Set For Execution

Al Jazeera: Tariq Aziz sentenced to death

Housing Market

A big report from the National Association of Realtors yesterday indicated that previously owned homes sold better in September than in August. The problem is that the median price for homes is going down. Housing has taken a value drop as we know. This is the crux of the problem. The housing bubble sent prices way too high and now they are floating down to earth. The people that bought on or in the bubble in many areas are now underwater. They owe more on the house than it is worth. I have close operatives in Las Vegas who are in this situation. Many in Las Vegas have this problem. On the other hand if you are in the market, Vegas is pretty cheap right now, bargain basement prices for lots of space. Its a buyers market.

Nobody is getting a swelled head and saying that the housing market is reviving. Its ever so slightly better, but there still could be several major icebergs as the Titanic floats along already with huge hole in its nether region.

CS Monitor: Home sales rise in September, but a housing glut and concerns remain
Previously owned homes sold at an annualized pace of 4.53 million units, up from 4.12 million a month earlier...


...report also noted a decline in the median price of homes compared with a year ago, consistent with concerns among some analysts that foreclosures and a still weak economy could further depress housing prices, which in turn could lead to more loan defaults.


The median sales price this September was $171,700, down slightly from about $176,000 a year ago.


"More than 20 percent of borrowers owe more than their home is worth..."

The Market On Tuesday

Good morning. It is warmer out, almost balmy, overcast, and damp. My walk was marvelous. Yesterday I got my laptop back from the Apple store. They did some repairs to the power port and put a new top on the computer. I am incredibly pleased. The computer which is 2.5 years old now looks brand f-ing new. The best part is that there was no charge. Incidentally the computer was fixed in less than 24 hours from when I brought it in. Apple is the best. Apple is the best. Sory, its the best.

At 8:15 futures are slightly down, the dollar is mixed, and oil is down. I would not say stocks will slip, I would say dip, or maybe wilt, perhaps tilt.

Investors are wondering what the political landscape will look like after the November election massacre. The country will have a new breed of chirpy no nothings guaranteed to add more poison to the sick patient. Don't get me started.

Along with that election ambient worry festering in the background, investors will be looking at numbers on housing prices, consumer confidence, and the ongoing third quarter corporate results. It is conceivable that the market could eventually rally today, on the other hand...

It all depends on the numbers and the emotion.

CNN: Stocks set to slide at open
A stronger-than-expected report on existing housing sales Monday helped propel stocks to 6-month highs.


...investors are nervous ahead of the Nov. 2 elections...


...an onslaught of reports, both corporate and economic.


Oil for November delivery slipped 5 cents to $82.47 a barrel.

'Lovelinesse'

Moriarty

Monday, October 25, 2010

Nikkei Opens Lower On Tuesday

Reuters: Nikkei eases as yen rise weighs; focus on earnings

'11'

Signs Of A Resurgence

Tea Party - Democrats - Tea Party - Democrats, yeah, I am going with the Dems. Its the poison that will kill you immediately versus the poison that will kill you a little bit later.

Newsweek: Poll: Obama Approval Rating Jumps, Democrats Close ‘Enthusiasm Gap’
...the difference in enthusiasm between Democratic and Republican voters may be less stark than some other polls have suggested. A small plurality of registered voters—48 to 43 percent—would prefer that Democrats keep control of Congress.

'The Next Three Days'

trailer

Dang, I was looking for a new 'Fringe' but got nada.

Party Polluters

As the election draws near, the headlines are getting wilder. Its almost amusing.

The GOP is in for gains, so they say. That is really going to help things progress forward. What a mess we are in for...

Raw Story: European polluters back Tea Party candidates
...Lafarge, GDF-SUEZ, EON, BP, BASF, BAYER, Solvay and Arcelor Mittal.

Breaking The Silence

Israeli soldiers talk about the Palestinians. Go to the image gallery.

Breaking The Silence

Kos - Funding FOX And NPR

Jed Lewison at Kos, has written on how NPR is actually funded.

Kos: It's time to ban federal funding for Fox News
NPR gets absolutely no direct federal funding. Zilch, nada, zippo.

What You Wear

Pictures of Muslims Wearing Things

Overachieve

Read it, it is a fascinating article..

Live Science: Why Overachievers Choke Under Pressure

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Al Qaeda, Iraq, Wiki Leaks

The Iraq Wiki Leaks are cementing into place all that we had already known about how al Qaeda established itself in Iraq after the war began.

The entire meaning of the war, as a war to fight terrorism, was not true. The people responsible for 9-11 were not in Iraq when the war began. Yet the defenders of this policy could care less.

So here we are almost a decade later, and the machinery of war raged on. The Bush administration and its neocon cronies, loving play golf and gleefully conjure up more body mangling carnage to delight future Republican administrations. That's something you can count on.

Al Jazeera: Files show al-Qaeda's grip on Iraq
"If you're asking, are there al-Qaeda in Iraq, the answer is yes, there are. It's a fact, yes." Donald Rumsfeld, US Secretary of Defence, August 2002


It was one of the key American justifications for the Iraq war. But the theory that al-Qaeda was present in Saddam-era Iraq, much cited by the Bush administration in the run-up to the invasion, has been undermined by the content of secret US military documents.


The files contain only half a dozen references to the group for the whole of 2004, the year records begin. But under the leadership of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian who had met Osama bin Laden while fighting the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, the classified reports show that al-Qaeda established itself as major player in the carnage as the conflict wore on.


The infrequency of al-Qaeda-related files early in the war suggest that US officials were wrong when they accused Iraq of harbouring the group's fighters in the years prior to the invasion. Instead, the narrative that emerges from the classified reports indicates that the US presence itself was what attracted them to the country.

Juan Williams, Soros, Beck

The plot thickens. The Juan firing is becoming a bigger deal. It has set off a larger battle.

In enters Soros who recently donated a boatload to NPR and a million to Media Matters. Apparently there is a Soros and Beck (sic) battles raging over the meaning of the donations. Beck accusing NPR of a Soros agenda.

What I don't get is this odd recoiling from FOX News. FOX is a mouthpiece for the Republican Party. We get it, everybody gets it. Why the posturing in defense of some notion of fairness? Ridiculous, let's get this nonsense behind us. FOX is what it is. Its the partisan make believe news.

It would be interesting to know the demographics of the people barraging NPR with calls to rehire Juan. What are their politics, race, age group, etc etc.

CS Monitor: NPR vs. Fox News: Juan Williams firing reveals deeper media fight
Mr. Soros recently donated $1.8 million to NPR, seen by conservative critics (and certainly by Mr. Beck) as proof (a) that NPR is a liberal mouthpiece and (b) that billionaire Soros pressured NPR to get rid of Williams.


“They want NPR to hire him back immediately. If NPR doesn't, they want all public funding of public radio to stop...."


Soros also recently gave $1 million to Media Matters “to hold Fox News accountable for the false and misleading information they so often broadcast.”

The Market On Monday

Good morning. The weekend was fruitful, we worked on the old house and furthered the cause. This morning's walk found conditions to be foggy, damp, and cool. The garbage trucks were out early as well, they make very musical sounds. Its a lonely job at 6 a.m.

At 8:00 a.m. futures are moderately higher, the dollar is up, and oil is up - up, up, and up.

Third quarter corporate results are the order of the day and week. Mixed in there will be news on existing home sales, and who knows what else is going to arise.

It seems like a safe bet that the market will open higher.

One thing to note here, this morning's CNN article makes references to an improving job market. Watching the market over the past few years, I would have to say that this is job reference is an anomaly. Perhaps this trickle of a positive indicator is a beginning of a larger trend. Trying to be optimistic here, its my job.

CNN: Stocks set to open higher
Company results have exceeded expectations so far this season, and investors are looking for that trend to continue...


...the National Association for Business Economics said Monday that employment conditions improved in the third quarter to the highest level since the start of the 2008-2009 recession.


Oil for December delivery gained $1.04 to $82.73 a barrel.

'If You Kiss Me'

The Dagons

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Nikkei Opens Higher On Monday

Reuters: Nikkei inches up after G20, earnings in focus

'Quiz Show'

Coming Up On Wall Street

One thing to note is that the Market's Volatility Index, the VIX, is at its lowest level in half a year.

Otherwise, the financial journalists are not giving us anything, because its always an unknown.

If corporate third quarter reports continue to come in above expectations then the market will rally. In addition there is the ameliorating mystery factor that arise without any outsider warning, such as the Bank Of China changing its interest rate structure.

Let's collectively think gains.

Reuters: Stocks may dance to big swings, earnings
...any disappointments in either earnings or outlooks could, of course, trigger a sharp sell-off.


Earnings will remain the center of attention this week. Many analysts predict that earnings will continue to support the market rally that kicked off October.

6 Foot Tall Trick Or Treaters And Single Women

I can understand this. When we lived in the city I would definitely get freaked out by the people at the door.

ABC News: Some Spooked Cities Ban Teenage Trick-or-Treating
He said he heard from too many single mothers and senior citizens complaining they were frightened by "6-foot-tall kids" showing up at their homes in search of candy.


City officials from Meridian, Miss., to Bishopville, S.C., and Boonsboro, Md., have cut off the trick-or-treat age at 12.

300 Million Year Old Australian Asteroid Strike

Perusing the world news, I stumbled across this story. Can you imagine the disturbance an event like this would create.

The Australian: Outback asteroid strike caused huge explosion and left 80km shock zone, studies reveal
EVIDENCE has been found of a massive asteroid impact near the Queensland-South Australia border more than 300 million years ago.

Al Jazeera - 'Africa United'

New film suggested to be Africa's 'Slumdog Millionaire.'

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

'Дороги'

Поющие гитары

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Rent Time

I would use campaign money to buy guitars.

Raw Story: O’Donnell admits using campaign cash to pay rent

As long as she's not using it to buy liquor...

De-Compose

RussiaToday - Iraq Wiki Leaks

I almost don't want to look at this stuff. We knew it was ugly. I was out there protesting this damn war. Bush lost his mind on this one, he really over-reached.

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Your Weekly Address

Morning Walk Progress

I was out there walking my 2.3 mile route this morning. Its quieter on the weekend because people sleep in and the fury of the work and school week is dormant. Its crispy, cool, damp, and slightly raw. I like the raw weather.

We got a card signed by all the people at the doggy daycare where Mitchel spent his daytime his last few months. He really needed close supervision and couldn't be left alone for long hours, more than one hour was uncomfortable. It was a nice gesture, very touching in fact.

I will spend a good part of the weekend working on the kitchen. The tile is in and now it needs grout. The countertop is on order and when that arrives, we get the sink back. The sink is really the key. I am looking forward to cooking decent food. Since we have been without a kitchen I have gained 10 pounds eating prepared food from the deli and frozen microwave stuff. I got to drop the weight, not comfortable at 175.

Well onto the news and to see if the world is basically still an integral entity. I always wonder about that.

'Take Your Time'

The SOS Band

Friday, October 22, 2010

'Walker'

"A black comedy based on the true story of 19th-century soldier of fortune William Walker (Ed Harris) who, with a ragtag band of mercenaries and the backing of American business interests, declared himself President of Nicaragua and ruled for two years."

TPMtv - Juan Williams On NPR

Bizarre story.

Juan Williams is rather ticked, so he goes on FOX of all places to rant against public media. Okay, now I don't feel so bad about his firing.

Suck up...

Out Of Control With Diabetes

Its amazing the health food movement which gained a lot of traction over the last 40 plus years has in the long run not caught on in the general population. It seems like certain slogans or ideas have caught on but otherwise the overall health of US citizens is deteriorating.

This is another major wake up call. Exercise, for cripes sake. I'm out there in the morning walking, come on and join me. Eat the real food.

Think we have medical health care cost problems now? Look at what is coming down the pike.

Reuters: Diabetes to double or triple in U.S. by 2050 -govt
Up to a third of U.S. adults could have diabetes by 2050 if Americans continue to gain weight and avoid exercise...

Terrorist Health Benefits Blow


L’Houssaine Kherchtou says he quit al Qaeda because they wouldn't pay for his pregnant wife's health care.

Is there a crazed irony here? Words are escaping me on this one...

Bloomberg: Witness Testifies He Left Al-Qaeda Over Payment of Wife’s Care

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Speeding Up Settlement Construction

This is just not helpful.

What is the goal here? Is the idea to take over the land, disperse the Palestinians, and recreate a new version of the American 19th century Westward expansion. The "Indians" didn't make out too well last I looked. What humanistic lesson is not occurring here?

CS Monitor: Pace of Israeli settlement construction four times faster than prior to freeze
Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank – land expected to be at the nucleus of an independent Palestinian state in any peace deal with Israel – has surged since a partial freeze on settlement expansion expired on Sept. 26, says the left-leaning Israeli group Peace Now.


...settlers have begun construction on more than 600 new homes in the West Bank since Israel's 10-month moratorium on expansion expired.


Settlement expansion in the West Bank has become the most visible obstacle to peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian officials touted by President Obama. The Palestinians see the expanding settlements as creating "facts on the ground" that demonstrate Israel is unwilling to give up land conquered in 1967's Arab-Israeli war for peace.

The Market On Friday

Good morning. Another week has roared by. The weekend threatens to be gorgeous. I was out walking at 6 a.m. and the sky was dark and perfectly clear. The stars were out and a last glimmer of a bright fullish moon kept my head looking up. I didn't trip over anything either. The joggers were out in droves.

Allegedly Bill Clinton lost the nuke bomb codes for a few months. Did anyone bother to look in the condom and vibrator closet? Apparently not, and I don't understand why.

Here's the thing with Palin and O'Donnell. They are political actresses, not political authorities. They sound like politicians and have the tenacity of politicians, but there's nothing under the hood. Tea Party people like that. Why is that? Palin and O'Donnell say it all the time, "I'm just like you." This means they are just like their base, a lot of emotion but not much under the hood. GK has it right.

At 8:00 a.m. futures are neutral, the dollar is mixed, and oil is up.

Investors are following a big 20 meeting in South Korea. There's all sorts of talk about the revaluation of certain currencies. Specifically the US wants China to stop artificially devaluing the yuan. The playing field would become more acceptable from the American point of view.

Third quarter reports keep coming through the pipe. I see that Key Bank is picking up steam. Key is a big deal in upstate NY.

CNN: Stocks poised for mixed open
The two-day Group of 20 finance and central bank meeting kicked off Friday in South Korea, and tensions about currency were brewing.


Oil for December delivery rose 91 cents to $81.46 a barrel.

'Pick Up the Pieces'

AWB

I hesitantly post this because the leader of this outfit totally pissed me personally off one night. I totally played circles around AWB's so-so guitarist one night and hurt his delicate ego. Never hurt a star's ego because they will bite you like a rabid snake.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Nikkei Opens Higher On Friday

Reuters: Nikkei inches up; focus on G20, strong yen

Gibson's ES Guitar Factory

'Scintillation'

SCINTILLATION from Xavier Chassaing on Vimeo.

O'Donnell Left To Sink By Her Party

This particular candidate is horrible for the country. She is just plain outright unqualified. There is unqualified as in Palin, yet O'Donnell sets even a new standard in unqualified. Tenacity without substance is like a blob of paint accidentally hanging on a canvass. There's no skill or knowledge or understanding involved with how it is applied, yet it sticks and stays there to your annoyance.

Reuters: Special report: Conservative donors let Christine O'Donnell sink
An official of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the national pro-business group that is investing heavily in political advertising during the current mid-term campaign, said the Chamber has not sponsored independent advertising in support of O'Donnell and was not planning to do so.


Republicans insist that their problem is not with O'Donnell but rather her lack of competitiveness in the race, even though that may in part reflect her funding issues.

ABC - O'Donnell Believes She Won The First Amendment Debate

Palin light?

Potato Head

This reminds me of the film "They Shoot Horses Don't They." Is this the age of screwball extremism or what?

20 potatoes a day for two months, would you do it?

We all like potatoes. Someone once told me its hard to screw up a potato. He meant that its good prepared anyway at all. I like potato chips. I never feel good after I eat them, but why let history or common sense interfere with a moment of salty greasy pleasure.

Live Science: Man Eating Nothing But Potatoes for 2 Months
"I want to show the world that the potato is so healthy that you could live off them alone for an extended period of time without any negative impact to your health..."

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

452,000

First time jobless claims fell 23,000 from last week's 475,000. Its still rather outrageous.

Working Towards Working

The French are in an uproar over changes in collecting retirement benefits. 62 is the new 60 for partial benefits, and 67 is the new 65 for full benefits. Now the French are in line with Americans and they don't like it one little bit.

We will however face the same issue. It seems inevitable. The age at which one can collect SSI will probably increase a year or two or three.

Now what about the fact that millions upon millions of people are now unemployed? We have a huge mountain of problems to work through. We already know the Republican answer, that would be to scrap SSI and Medicare ASAP. They are still quite furious with FDR for imposing "radical socialism" on our benign and happy lands. Medicare came later, but why not blame "socialists" anyhow.

How about we go by party affiliation. If you are a Republican, no SSI or Medicare for you. Works for me. You want to see Republican voter registrations trail off real fast...

CS Monitor: Like France, will US soon move to boost retirement age?
Boosting the age limit in the US is one way to help make Social Security solvent, many economists say.


In a September USA Today/Gallup poll, 77 percent of Americans said they agree that the rising cost of Social Security and Medicare "will create major economic problems" for the US in the next 25 years, unless changes are made to these entitlement programs.

The Market On Thursday

Good morning. Its pretty dark at 6:30 a.m. A little warmer today but still crisp. My morning walk was invigorating. Walking is a perfect exercise for someone with achy knees. It doesn't stress the body like running and if you do it long enough you can build up a sweat. Walk.

At 8:15 a.m. futures are moderately up, the dollar is mixed, and oil is slightly down per barrel.

Investors are very pleased with news out of China. China's GDP has investors fainting in pleasure, oh the vapors. Meanwhile third quarter reports continue to bathe the turkey in champagne. What can we say, at the moment the market is fluffy. Anyone who bought decent equities a year ago should be in good shape with that batch.

CNN: Stocks headed for higher start
China's gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic output, grew at an annual rate of 9.6% during the third quarter of 2010.


The government's weekly jobless claims report comes out an hour before the market open...


Oil prices for December delivery slipped 12 cents to $82.43 a barrel.

'Poison'

Bell Biv DeVoe

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

'The Flesh And The Fiends'

Nikkei Opens Higher On Thursday

Reuters: Nikkei rises 0.7 percent, commodity stocks gain

TPMtv - Aqua Buddha

hehe...

The Church of Aqua Buddha

Colbert On The View

Mitchel 1995 to 2010

That's Mitchel our good dachshund buddy who passed away last week. Mitchel was 15 and 1/2 years old. He was a great dog.

Here he is skulking through the pachysandra in our yard in the Spring of 2009. Cancer became his undoing.

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

Intel Invests In America

I had to do a double take reading the excerpted article below. Intel is actually building new manufacturing facilities in the USA, and is upgrading existing facilities. Lots of American people will find work as a result.

This is an unusual notice as so many jobs are flowing or have already flowed out of the country. This move goes against the trend. Some are seeing it as a sign of life in the flat American employment scene.

We are all for it.

CS Monitor: Intel investment a big vote of confidence for US economy
In a big vote of confidence for the US economy, computer chipmaker Intel says it will hire 800 to 1,000 new workers in Oregon and Arizona as it spends up to $8 billion upgrading four factories and building one new one. All of that construction will create 6,000 to 8,000 hard hat positions, Intel estimates.


...three quarters of its microprocessors are made in the US.


One of the plants will be in greater Phoenix and the second facility will be outside of Portland.

The Market On Wednesday

Good morning. I woke up late. I was looking at the clock early this morning and thought, I'll just sleep a little bit more... Dang, it happens to everyone. So right off the bat I am in catch up mode. It doesn't help that I am scheduled to do all kinds of things today. But I do so love the news.

At 8:00 a.m. futures are modestly up, the dollar is down, and oil is up over a dollar per barrel. The trifecta is in.

Investors are pointing to an interest rate hike by the Bank Of China as the reason for Tuesday's meltdown. Today, it turns out that its not so bad after all. For the opening bell, the market is poised to turn on a dime again and now open higher.

How the indexes perform during the day will largely be a matter of how third quarter numbers look. So far they have looked fair to good with a few noticeable exceptions.

CNN: Stocks set to rebound
Earnings are on tap from several companies, including Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo and Dow component Boeing.


The Federal Reserve is due to release its Beige Book of economic conditions at 2 p.m. ET.


Oil prices for November delivery increased $1.03 to $80.52 a barrel.

'Good Thing'

Fine Young Cannibals

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

'Paranormal Activity 2'

trailer

Just in time for Halloween...
I like scary movies but I will probably wait for it to come out on Netflix.

Nikkei Opens Lower On Wednesday

Reuters: Nikkei down 1.5 percent on China rate hike, Wall St falls

O'Donnell Demonstrates Her Complete Lack Of Knowledge Surrounding The US Constitution

I think this clip is rather salient in the sense that it shows how very little Tea Party people and their political candidates know about the U.S. Constitution. Its one thing to go around shouting out how the Constitution is being destroyed and another that shows upon simple investigation that one is fundamentally clueless about the Constitution.

Here O'Donnell is amazed to find out that the First Amendment separates the powers of church and state.

'Massage Therapy'

House

Anderson Cooper On Angle

Jimmy McMillan With 'The Rent Is Too Damn High Party'

Jimmy is running for governor of NY State.

Wisdom

From - Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche,
"The way of cowardice is to embed ourselves in a cocoon, in which we perpetuate our habitual patterns. When we are constantly recreating our basic patterns of habits and thought, we never have to leap into fresh air or onto fresh ground."

The End Is Postponed

Phew. Turns out the Mayan calendar predicting the end of the world in 2012 is probably off by many decades. Blame it on a mathematical error.

Feel better? Now what are we going to do with all those apocalyptic movies in the works and already out. No problem, I like a good apocalypse...

Live Science: End of the Earth Postponed
...Mayan to the modern calendar may be off by as much as 50 or 100 years. That would throw the supposed and overhyped 2012 apocalypse off by decades and cast into doubt the dates of historical Mayan events.

Al Jazeera - World News Updates

France Warned Of Al Qaeda Attack

Saudi Arabia is warning France of a possible AQAP attack. AQAP is a separate al Qaeda group, could we say affiliate, influenced and following Osama bin Laden. Can we get this guy yet?

France is under stress lately from financial austerity measures and now from al Qaeda.

Its our hope that officials can stay one step ahead of these guys and curtail any attack plan.

CS Monitor: Saudis warn France of an Al Qaeda attack. Are they right?
...Saudi Arabia has warned him (the French Interior Minister) that Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), a Yemen-based group that shares Osama bin Laden's worldview...has France in its sights.


...it's worth keeping in mind that the group hasn't yet successfully organized an attack anywhere in Europe (or anywhere in the West).


...France probably has more to worry about from Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb...

The Market On Tuesday

Good morning. Nice crispy chill in the air this morning as I walked. There were lots of young joggers out this morning. Everybody is wearing sleek form fitting running outfits. I enjoy how they look on women...

At 8:15 a.m. futures are moderately down, the dollar is up, and oil is down.

After a nice decent run up on Monday, the market is poised to go down at the bell.

Bank Of America posted a huge third quarter loss this morning. Some will immediately respond with a "who cares." The information coming forward on how foreclosures are being handled has placed big banks in an even more miserable view, if that's possible.

The market is reactive and fluid. Today it is turning on a dime.

CNN: Stocks headed for early selloff
...People's Bank of China raised its benchmark deposit and lending rates...


...Bank of America reported a third-quarter net loss of $7.3 billion...


A reading on September housing starts and building permits is due out an hour before the opening bell.

'Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime'

Dean Martin

Monday, October 18, 2010

Nikkei Opens Higher On Tueday

Reuters: Nikkei rises 0.7 pct after Citi earnings, yen weighs

'Do Shapeshifters Dream Of Electric Sheep?'

Fringe

TPMtv - Jack Conway Vs Rand Paul

Wow...

'Striptease'

Striptease (2008) from Tony Linkson on Vimeo.

Reunion

I am not a fan of reunions, specifically my reunions. I am perfectly happy to see others reunite, clearly its beneficial. However I do not require or like reuniting, of any kind. For me life moves on. I like to look forward. I have no need to repeat beyond the friendly email and knowledge that others are doing well.

The Onion: Man Attends 25-Year Nursery School Reunion
"It's amazing how much everyone has changed, especially Janet Norgren..."


"She's like 3 feet taller, has put on quite a bit of weight..."