OT: That means NOT woodworking related.

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Mark & Juanita wrote:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OS2fI2p9iVs

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Market cap measures the value of companies. Its indexes aren't even considered when determining stages of the business cycle. Businesses respond to demand which is powered by consumer confidence. That indicator rises in a robust labor market. To answer your question: Consumers create jobs.
Republicans are not adverse to assisting business cronies, but consumer confidence is better provided by policies designed to strengthen the labor market. For example, overseas profit centers are taxed at lower rates. This is good for cronies. They can sack a business unit and bring it up in China. Or they can ship form processing to India and charge back to the company so that it's taxed at the lower rate. You may applaud this type of activity. I don't.
You picked a strange time to argue in favor of de-regulation. The current crises was made possible by the formation of a shadow banking industry that existed outside of Federal regulatory control. Savings were moved from banks to funds that bought asset backed commercial paper from investment houses that bought collateralized debt from securitized mortgages. Now we have an old fashioned bank run with no FDIC support. The cycles between these fiascoes are exactly as long as people's memories. This shadow industry was allow to thrive at a time when the 1980s savings and loan crisis became a distant memory. The greatest period of prosperity and innovation in this country came at a time of greatest regulation so I don't buy the argument that it stifles progress. Sustained growth requires a stable financial environment.

Where I work, the CEO sits on the Board with whom he enjoys a cozy relationship. It's reflected in his salary and bonuses. I doubt the average stock holder considers his multi-million dollar bonuses in their best interest. How do you suggest they exert their weight?

If Adam Smith was in short supply, then there probably little demand. Funny how that works ;-) IMO Alfred Marshall provided a much better theoretical foundation for his flavor of thought. In their day, Smith, Marx, Marshall and Keynes each asked the right questions. Each in response to the conditions of his time. Personally, I think Schumpeter is a better guide through current conditions but I'm just a hack arguing economics on the Internets...
Cheers, Jeff
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Jeff, (and Mark),
Arguing/debating the relative merits of economic theory is probably futile. Face-to-face we'd at least be more civil. With civility as the theme here, I want to point out a couple of apparent assumptions that may not be accurate.
Jeff, In one thread you mentioned the S&L bailout of the 80's where you seemed to infer that the cause was greedy officers and directors of those banks. Certainly there were some instances of that (keating, Silverado etc) but the primary reason was a shift in economic policy that caught most of these banks in the position of having lent long (30 year fixed home loans made up the bulk of portfolios) while they borrowed short. (Meaning they loaned out money in savings accounts and short CD's). There was a huge duration mismatch. Didn't matter when the spreads hadn't moved much. Spread was profit and life was good. The real problem came when rates and inflation soared in the late seventies and early 80's. To keep the deposits, banks had to pay more interest, ultimately way more than they were receiving on the loans. That was the spawn of the crisis. Crooks in the process? sure, a few. Not enough to bring down the system.
The second thing you seemed to intimate was that the taxpayers ultimately paid the price. Some lost deposits that weren't insured but no depositor lost money in an insured account. Congress essentially recapitalized the industry by making loans available and by setting up the Refinance Corporation (refcorp) to pay the insurance claims that were beyond the ability of the insurer to pay (then FSLIC now FDIC). Refcorp sold bonds in the market to raise the cash. Bond holders were and still are being paid from a 10% levy on the profits of the Federal Home Loan Bank System. (fed charter but wholly owned by the member banks) Essentially the industry foots the bill not the taxpayer. Sure one could argue that the consumer who uses banks ultimately pays but that's true of anything.
Anyway, I usually avoid these discussions simply because they usually degenerate into useless name calling pretty fast. I respect reasoned arguments, especially opposing ones, but hate to see a good one diminished by a misunderstanding of facts. Facts have no position on the political spectrum. The are what they are. Distortion of facts, intentional or not, is why these discussions fall apart. I concede that I may be misreading your intent so feel free to correct me if you wish. In fact you may well be aware of all of the above. If so, then using the bailout/Reagan/republican/crook/Bush doing it again kind of connection would, in my opinion be a cheap shot.
--
Patrick Fischer
Olalla, WA
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On Wed, 26 Mar 2008 18:57:56 -0700, "Patrick" <pfischerATATATATWavecable.com> wrote:

Geez, any one of them was enough. Saying the same thing over and over is not only redundant--it's downright cruel.
--
LRod

Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
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On Mar 26, 9:57 pm, "Patrick" <pfischerATATATATWavecable.com> wrote:

Could you show me where I infer that it was caused by greedy officers? As you mention, there were some who fit that category, but the problem resulted from institutional changes that occurred in the wake of deregulation. Certainly wide swings in commodity prices, in general prices and in interest rates played a role. The Fed was trying to get inflation under control and kept interest rates high. As a result of Volcker's policies, we seem to have lived up to the promise of Gerald Ford's dubious WIN buttons. Better late than never.
I tend to agree with William Seidman, the former head of the FDIC. He claims the banking problems of the 80s and 90s resulted primarily from unsound real estate lending. After de-regulation, banks were no longer required to have follow-on "take out" backed by a long-term lender. Prior to the 80s, real-estate comprised about 10% of a bank's portfolio, by the mid-80s that figured had increased five-fold. And so did pain when the bubble burst.

Yes. I claim taxpayers ultimately paid the price:
http://www.fdic.gov/bank/analytical/banking/2000dec/brv13n2_2.pdf
"The savings and loan crisis of the 1980s and early 1990s produced the greatest collapse of U.S. financial institutions since the Great Depression. Over the 1986-1995 period, 1,043 thrifts with total assets of over $500 billion failed. The large number of failures overwhelmed the resources of the FSLIC, so U.S. taxpayers were required to back up the commitment extended to insured depositors of the failed institutions. As of December 31, 1999, the thrift crisis had cost taxpayers approximately $124 billion and the thrift industry another $29 billion, for an estimated total loss of approximately $153 billion. The losses were higher than those predicted in the late 1980s, when the RTC was established, but below those forecasted during the early to mid-1990s, at the height of the crisis."

I wonder who misunderstood the facts, especially those associated with the cleanup cost...
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First off I don't care for GB nor McCain but the more I hear about Obama the more I dis trust him and what he says. Osama's preacher is a hateful hurting person This will be a tough election for me.
cm

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Sorry spell check changed Obama to Osama!!!!! OMG is that another sign not to vote for him! he he he.
cm

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"CM" wrote:

Think you are talking about Obama's preacher; however, that said, the old expression about walking a mile in a man's shoes before you judge him probably fits here.
I know I hold some opinions that wouldn't fit others, but they haven't had my life's experiences.
Lew
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Lew Hodgett wrote:

That may be the case, but seems to be a bit of (mega-understatement) a double standard here. There is no doubt that Rev J-Wright's "sermons" are anti-American, racially divisive, bigoted, and racist. Further, this was not just one single statement taken out of context, but a whole pattern of diatribes that have occurred over many years. Yet Obama's been a member of the congregation for almost 20 years and is only now speaking out against that? You don't remain a member of a church that preaches that kind of hatred without at least giving the appearance of your agreement with such extreme views. OTOH, look at how the same crowd covering and spinning for Obama went after Imus with a vengeance (Obama himself threw Imus under the bus). Look at how the same crowd that screamed loud enough to get Trent Lott to give up his Senate leadership position over a relatively mild by comparison comment made at a 90 year-old man's birthday party are now hailing how Obama has overcome the problem with his association with a racial separatist and are willing to let by-gones be by-gones and declare that this man is totally fit to be president of the US. Yet the same crowd, for statements not even approaching the bile spewed by this "reverend" have been declared unfit for their positions: Jimmy the Greek, Howard Cosell, that NBC sports reporterette, or Rush Limbaugh on ESPN. Every one of them was required to at a minimum, make public apology, grovel to the gods of the race game (Jesse and Rev. Al), and at worst, lost their positions.
So either Obama knew about the Rev's positions and was OK with it to the extent of remaining in that fellowship and actively supporting it which makes it a serious concern that he can lead all of this country or he was ignorant of those positions which means that he is so uninformed and unaware of what is going on around him that he is similarly unfit for that office.
--
If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough

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shoulda bought gold when it was at 600. not that long ago, now at 1000. the way things are going, i'm now thinking lead might be a good investment just so one can keep what he's worked a life time for. or go down trying ross
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I was given a tip to buy it when gold was $28 but passed.
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I cant say that I agree with many of your viewpoints and I have not, and still dont agree with the media conspiracy though I see clearly how it looks. The unfortunate fact is conservatives, especially hard right, are viewed and judged through a completely different lens with regards to issues like racism, worker rights, economics, and rightly so. Their overal reputation is well deserved and supported to this day.
That said, before I logged on this morning my wife and I sat and had a conversation that basically mirrored your post. I couldnt agree with you more and think you are right on point. While I wasnt considering Obama as I feel it is still too early, these facts really shoot a huge hole in his sails. You would think Obama, at any age, being the supposed phenom they make him out to be, would have sat with the preacher privately to express his disagreement with these sermons. I do this on an almost weekly basis talking with old farmers who are born and bread conservative and racist and I make it a point to clearly let them know that I dont support those positions. I dont try to change their view, I still consider them friends, but I at least let them know each and every time, that they are not my views and they offend me.
Its no news to anyone that our political system is rife with corruption, adultery, bigotry, and scandal. Left or right, I dont think we can recall a time in history when so many in the process, politicians and leaders, have fallen to stupid statement and scandal. Sure, in the past they were not looked into as deeply, investigated, media wasnt so prevalent. I just wonder when Americans, not both sides, Americans, are going to get fed up with it all and move.
I keep hoping someone is going to come out of the woodwork and turn this whole thing upside down. Hate to dig up the Ross Perot thing but something like that movement but a real tidal wave. A tsunami. Hell, even if they get in there and f8ck the whole thing up and just turn it on its head. Something like Pacino saying "I oughta take a flame thrower to this place". Ya Ya, dat's the ticket.
Mark
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Mark & Juanita wrote:

I read an interesting article yesterday. It alluded to the fact that Obama is such a phenonena that both Clinton and the republicans don't know what to do with him. The republicans wanted Hillary. Because they know that she is easy to hate and demonize. But the are worried that Obama may win and there is no clear cut strategy to defeat him.
This whole thing about Obama's minster being such a hateful, racist old fart is giving the republicans material they can use. They will portray Obama as one who tolerates racism, and therefore is a big hypocrite.
Talk about the ultimate irony. The republicans accusing a democrat of being (or at least tolerating) a racist. We live in interesting times.
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Lee Michaels wrote:

Umm, you do realize who was responsible for getting the civil rights bill passed, don't you?
[Hint, it *wasn't* the dems]
--
If you're going to be dumb, you better be tough

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-snip-
"My best advice to anyone who wants to raise a happy, mentally healthy child is: Keep him or her as far away from a church as you can." -- Frank Zappa
--
Help improve usenet. Kill-file Google Groups.
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On Thu, 20 Mar 2008 08:48:02 -0600, Dave Balderstone wrote:

That pretty much says it all.
But no politician ever got elected in this country without at least pretending to be a believer. Well, OK, maybe in California :-).
Obamas preacher bothers me too, but I see polls that say McCain beats Clinton, but Obama beats McCain. I'd vote for a yellow dog to end the Iraq war.
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Did you see Barry's speech on the matter? It was rhetorical brilliance.
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I'd vote for a yellow dog to end the

there anyone who doesn't want to see it end with a U.S.-led victory??
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It may go on for years trying to determine what a victory means over there. I doubt anyone has an answer as to when or how to pull out. That entire part of the world has always been at war of some sort.
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