Sunday, November 6, 2011

Republican Field

As Republicans deal with arguably their first scandal in this primary adventure (that of Cain's apparant harassment accusations) I'm left to wonder whether the focus has backed off of the economy in favor of this more sensationalist bent of news.  Now, I understand that the candidates need to be vetted, but it seems like the more of this "sexy" news gets air time, the less concern there is for the fundamental issues of the economy.  We can pretend that the situation in Greece means nothing to us, but we'll all be harping once more on finance issues when the Euro zone starts a retraction. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Return from Obscurity

I've completed my Army training and now am able to continue my writing here on financial and political issues.  It has been a while but there is a lot of things to discuss: the upcoming election, the poor state of the economy, and - unfortunately given that it was discussed here months ago - the spiraling problems with our debt.  In addition, I will also be highlighting stocks more often with focuses on what I'm investing in these days.  Thank you to the people that have encouraged me through my time in basic and those who have followed this blog.

China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC)

CNOOC Limited is a state-owned company, the 3rd largest petroleum producer in China.  It's share cost comes with a nice semi-annual dividend.  In addition, it is down for the year some 70 dollars which makes me inclined to invest sooner than later.  Being shares of rival Total S.A. are up 10 dollars since the market crash in August, it might be wise to invest in China to bet on growth in an economy less affected by said crash.  

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Boot Camp

This blog will be suspended for a few months.  I'm leaving for boot camp on Monday and will not have access till late summer.  Have a good summer and enjoy the fun...I'll probably be doing pushups!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Congress Returns for Debt Ceiling Fight

Next Monday the debt ceiling debate will kick off the return of the Congress - which has had about four weeks off to celebrate Easter.  The issue has been buried as this week has been spent in celebration over the death of Bin Laden.  However, it is expected that the temporary unity will quickly dissolve as Congressional leaders stall the inevitable yes vote on raising the ceiling in hope for as much concessions as possible.  Though we can wish for a real stand to be made at this juncture, there will probably be a minuscule reduction in projected spending and, of course, continued debt.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Obama's Re-Election not a Guarantee

With President Obama's successful defeat of Osama Bin Laden, many people believe that it may now be impossible to defeat the President in 2012.  This is not true.  Aside from his success on this front, he fails with respect to the economy.  CNN ran a poll today indicating that, even though his job performance rating has received a slight bump, his numbers on the economy and, more importantly, his handling of the deficit are down.  Unless he works to put forth a real program turn around the deficit, his political future is still an unknown.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Osama Bin Laden is finally DEAD

Americans can wake up Monday morning to face a new week and a new month knowing that the infamous terrorist who mocked and enraged us, who sought to destroy everything that we stand for, who murdered thousands of our fellows citizens, who cost us trillions to pursue is finally and forever GONE from the Earth.

As we move forward to further undo his terrible work, I hope we can do so with renewed cooperation and hope. Today is America's Day.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Long Form Republican Membership Certification

Donald Trump might be the GOP front runner at the moment, but it is likely due more to his celebrity status and his recently trumped (excuse the pun) birther "success", of which he takes full credit than actual political support.  Meanwhile, in the real world, his credentials are being questioned by legitimate politicians, namely Sen. Rand Paul.  Coming off the heels of yesterday's news, Paul has asked to see the long form certificate of Trumps Republican Party membership.  Poking fun at Trump's political flip-flopping is nothing new, but it is coming from the GOP who have let their message be overrun as of late with bad policy and bad spokesmen (or carnival barkers).  Distracted from the debt debt much?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Budget Cut Deception

The Cato Institute released the above video today which puts sheds light on the ridiculous deception game that has been running around Washington and the media under the guise of a budget "cut." Sen. Rand Paul was right when he first pointed out that these "real spending cuts" were nothing more than trivial reductions in spending.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Obama's War on Main Street

President Obama today declared war on "big oil" by asking Congress to remove that industry's numerous tax credits.  These tax credits which benefit the 98% of oil company shareholders who are middle income investors who have their shares tied up through retirement & mutual funds won't do anything to reduce the price of gas at the pump - they are, rather, incentives for that industry to become more accessible and productive.  This is rather a brazen play to the environmental lobby to punish "fat cats" who, in actuality, are most of our seniors who have put their money in stocks.  Obama went on to assert that he supported natural gas, though he seems not to understand that you have to drill for it (something most of these companies are involved in).  The worst part of the whole ploy (a dynamic distraction from the debt debate) is that Speak Boehner ate it up.

Business Tax

Controversy will fly as Congressman Ryan's plan moves on, especially its proposed Medicare reductions.  But something extremely bullish in terms of the markets are the lowered business taxes which could very well launch us right out of this recession.  On the day, stocks are generally up.  The financial world awaits to hear the Fed tomorrow give an unprecedented press conference, attempting to awe us just by show instead of awing us with substance.  Meanwhile, the President does nothing to turn attention to debt ceiling debate.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Distraction Time (Syria)

The White House "reminds" us that its hypocrisy on the Syria/Libya issue is not something that should be worried about, as both situations are generally the same.  We'd like to think that intervention in Syria would be as successful as ours in Libya (haha) - but we'll be content it seems with some frivolous sanctions, being they've had such a storied history of turning the tide in every case of their use.  Regardless, talk of military action in Syria and of stepping up pressure in Libya will probably dominate the news this week as the Obama administration tries to do everything it can to distract from the debate over raising the debt ceiling.  Any talk of a Balanced Budget Amendment would be detrimental to their tax and spend eloquently read to us last week off the teleprompters.

China Looms

The International Monetary Fund predicts now that China will surpass the United States as the world's economic superpower in 2016, a mere five years away. If you take the IMF at their word, I'd say their number is not too far off, the news is startling.  A few weeks ago, Herman Cain wrongfully asserted that China held 26% of America's debt (it is actually around 8%) but both Mr. Cain and the IMF's numbers are dancing around the issue: that our national debt, the impending national crisis, cannot be ignored for much longer.  Markets have reacted to the news timidly.  People don't know whether now to bank on a financial collapse or to get out of the way for one.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Inaction w/ Threats

Although there seems to be a lot of strutting around and talking big coming from Washington about what side "will do" regarding the deficit cap, I'd be seriously surprise if anything but the usual pandering went on.  I'd be downright shocked if we went to the wall on the issue, refused to raise the limit without REAL budget cuts (not just spending drawbacks) but there is a mood of apathy in the air.  The GOP does just what is necessary to avoid any real leadership, the White House presents no leadership, and us Tea Partiers are left fuming over all the inaction.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Invisible Hand

Regardless of the creeping socialism that Washington seems at both times to pile on us and feign to take away, there is doubtless a fact that 'the invisible hand' that guides our economy exists without their finagling.  The businesses of the future are not being brainstormed right now with considerations of the forests of regulations on file - would they ever come about if they were?  The people who will build the future of American service and industry are putting forth that golden principle in their minds that guides all creative capitalistic ingenuity: How can I get customers? 

It is the pursuit of someone's business that, in the end, will create the greatest curve of innovation and prosperity.  So why flub it up now with regulation, taxes, and wasted subsidy?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


It's so odd that Algeria's rebels - who are the only dissidents in the last year to appeal strongly to pro-Western secular considerations - are left essentially on their own.  We certainly can't help them, as helpful as they would undoubtedly be to the stability of the region and the fight against terror.  But with three wars ongoing, and the most recent fruitless adventure a political embarrassment, rallying any support behind an intervention would be impossible.  So these rebels - rebels we know, rebels who are are friends - are left to themselves, to lose.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Sell Sell Sell

The market sunk low this morning and has yet to recover.  The S&P cut their long term outlook and the market, wiser than the Congress it seems, has decided that the deficit IS a problem.  The budget deal did not allay their fears as a morning sell off underscored the reality that doing nothing may play to a political base but not to the real state of crisis that exists in our financial market.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Fifty-Nine Republicans stood up for what they believed in opposing the mock bill that would "cut" some 38 billion from the deficit.  Whatever real number that is...either it be the 300 million and change as the Congressional Budget Office calls it, or the spin amounts coming from the White House and GOP leadership, whatever the number, it isn't enough.  Not close to enough to solve or even dent our problem. 

This is the facade to hide the truth, the bait-and-switch to distract us, to annoy us with numbers and boring concessions.  We are suppose to slump meeking away, satisfied that something was done.  But nothing was done here, short of rediculous politicking.  59 Republicans stood up for what was right, for what must be done - to face the hard facts, hard reality, and to begin the work towards a real solution.  But they failed.

The rest of Washington were content to live in a dream world.

Bait & Switch

The Congressional Budget Office has come out with some disappointing numbers.  Not so disappointing I suppose for fans of the Leviathon government and its flood of programs and services and branches of the welfare state, but disappointing to us that see our debt problem as cruicial, as the whole crux to our economic problem, and the lever to which will move us into greater prosperity or slight us into obscurity as a second-rate power.

Of the much touted 38 billion concession?  The great comprimise?  A mere 352 million exist as actual cuts.  The remainder, that floating 37.6 billion, has already been spent.  That's right, what we just spent a week bringing the government nigh on halt to SAVE has been spent. The savings?  Oh, they'll appear in a year, or three, or in the next decade.

So here we are again.  Thought this last week was going to change politics?  No chance.  They called us Tea Partyers crazy for demanding larger cuts.  They said it would cripple the economy and U-turn our recovery.  Having seen what 38 billion does, i.e. NOTHING, I think we'd do better now to demand more than our original 100 billion cause.  It is obvious that Washington would rather play games, fund its unsanctioned war games, and earn political clout pandering to its base with the welfare state.

The Tea Party sees what this is, and bait-and-switch is almost too innocent a phrase to use.  We are to be taken as fools, they think.  They don't suspect though, that the best days of our common sense revolution are to come.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

GOP Fights Back

The GOP is rightly standing in opposition today to the President's budget plan (to be unveiled in tonight's speech).  Tonight will be Obama's push back to regain dominance.  Last week's down-to-the-wire deal of 38 billion and change noticably hurt the White House, as it stood by silently and ultimately conceded to a plan that was worse than it had expected and had pleased none.  Now Obama will fight it out for tax increases on the wealthy for perhaps no real reason aside from ideological liberalism and to flash his muscles.  Other than this show it will do nothing in the face of monsterous spending or debt management.

Obama also will call for reductions in the Department of Defense, okay.  As Congressman Ryan has said, no program is off the table.  But forgive me if I find it odd that the first program the President is willing to explore cuts for is our national defense.  An almost unashamed play to the left.  I don't have a Harvard degree so maybe there is some reasoning behind this that makes sense - to cut defense in the conduct of 3 wars and an international manhunt against terrorism?  Mr. President, you haven't even asked us if we are OK with operations in Libya yet.  Are we suppose to assume you know the final costs of your adventure there and can make the cuts accordingly?

It is all slight of hand and early campaigning.  Ignore the huge debt behind the curtain.  Republicans have their chance again to fight this.  The weakness of Obama's compromising hand has been shown again and again.  The GOP has its job to do in the upcoming hours: stick to their guns in their opposition to tax hikes.  Our best advantage is now, to keep socialism at bay through showdowns.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Obama to tax our way out of debt.

As we prepare tomorrow for President Obama's anticipated budget speech (even now, no doubt, a team of no less than a dozen must be curling each subtle nuance of every sentence to perfection) already the media and blogs are alight with cries to tax the rich, tax the rich.  As if running to the left will solve our staggering deficit.  As if taxes at all are at the base of our problems.

It seems we are being asked not only to ignore our crazy spending, but to pretend that the problem is so simple that a little bump in taxes will make it all go away so we can have more handouts from some new government agencies, comissions, and committees.

What will it take for us to get on the right track?  If Obama thinks he can walk away tomorrow night, after garnering support from the Left (i.e. wealthy tax increases), after ignoring our debt crisis, after ignoring our credit crisis, than he will be losing more that the support of the independents.  He will be losing re-election for sure.

A 40 Billion Dollar Stall.

There goes the 100 billion dollar promise. Out of Washington today we hear that a compromise has been made.  I should note, though, that I am hearing this out of decidedly left-leaning sources - that this weeks round of budget negotiations have increased the cut from last weeks 38.5 billion to a mere 40 billion.  So, in other words, the government nearly shut down for 1.5 billion dollars.

Absolutely unacceptable.  The cuts do nothing to give us our economy back within the next decade.  We still are spending more than ever, this year being our largest budget deficit in the history of our nation.  But still some media outlets paint the story in strictly "this will take the spoon out of a baby's mouth" terms, ignoring the devestating effects that leaving this debt to grow would cause. They don't see what a credit-less, bankrupt American would mean.

You can't run three wars, spend every dollar you have, use credit for every purchase you make, police the world, and provide universal healthcare without all of of that debt catching up to you.  The pain will only get worse.  If we ignore this, the pain will become excruciating.

The politicians have their heads in the clouds it seems.  It is probably not a coincidence that today is the 50th anniversary of the first man in space.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sen. Paul's Letter.

Senator Rand Paul, R-KY, sent out an open letter to his colleges today expressing his dissatisfaction with last week's "compromise" to pass a budget which will be the highest deficit budget in our history as a nation.  He rightly calls on his freshman class (elected last year) to oppose any further bill introduced that will continue to delude and lessen the campaigned on pledge of a 100 billion dollar cut.

Senator Paul rightly adds that these "cuts" are little more than reductions of spending...that nothing is really being cut.  Paul is fighting, it seems, against the whole Washington spin, sticking to his guns, principals, and values in regards to why we sent him to Washington in the first place.  He is a rare politician to watch.

The full text is on his website:

Debt Limit

I have a credit card.  Thankfully, I've been careful about how I use it and when I use it.  But like most forms of credit, I have a limit to just how much I can charge.  Well, the United States has a similiar debt cap.  And now, because we are running out of credit lines, Congress will vote to raise it some few trillion dollars.  It would be interesting if every time I got close to my limit I could just call in and ask for another thousand or two in lue of being credit-less.

Why can't the federal government make due with what is has? We could do to have some common sense on this issue.  Like everyone with credit, we understand that the higher the debt, the more the interest fights back the principal...and we are left in a debt loop.  Can we ever crawl out?

The United States defaulting on its debt is a truly scary scenario to think about.  Especially if you thought this last recession was bad.