Sunday, May 4, 2008

SAR #8125

The Second Amendment isn't about hunting Bambi,
It's about hunting the government.

Whack A Mole: Even with all the obstacles the banks threw up to prevent bankruptcies, in April new filings jumped 48% from 2007, which was itself 38% above 2006's level.

Teacher Taught: Another Cal State teacher, this one hired to teach American Studies - which would include Civil Rights and such - has been fired for refusing to sign a McCarthy era loyalty oath. I hope her students learned the lesson.

Bottom Fishing: CEO of KB Homes: " I don't think we're anywhere near a bottom in housing," estimating it will take four more years and another 20% cut in prices before inventory levels permit an upturn in the market.

No Apology: Sami al-Haj returned home to the Sudan from Iraq Friday, after a six year detour at Guantanamo, where he had been incarcerated for taking pictures while working for al-Jeriza as a cameraman. His real crime was being suspected of having once interviewed Osama Bin Laden.

Contaminated: Dow Chemical fired the head of the EPA's Chicago office this week, in retaliation for her expressed desire to have Dow clean up the dioxin contamination in soil and sediment that extends 50 miles beyond its Midland, MI plant. Dow dumped the highly toxic and persistent chemical into local rivers for most of the last century and wants to avoid paying for a clean up for most of this century.

Take 2 Asprin, Call in the Morning: Bank of England warns of "a significant increase" in the risk a major bank will fail, "disrupting the financial system."

Reform and Salvation: Congress is going to 'reform' the FHA and send it forth to rescue homeowners, mortgage brokers, derivative investors and Mr. Paulson's friends. Never mind the awkward fact that the FHA has experienced higher default rates than the private sub-prime market. Congress wants the FHA to extend loans to people in foreclosure. This is America, no one has to honor contracts anymore.

Leg Bone, Hip Bone: Wind power, or maybe solar power - something will save us when the oil is gone, right? But only if we get started; the Grangemouth refinery shutdown caused work on a new wind farm to cease. No diesel. Thus no trucks, cranes etc. to build and move the parts... Peak Oil - it's about more than just driving to the mall.

Treppenwitz: Retired General Ricardo Sanchez, having misplaced his honor, his balls and his oath of office for quite some time, is proud to report (a) they've been retrieved from the lost and found and (b) the Bush administration was and is "grossly incompetent."

Wronged Whales: Efforts to protect the last 350 -400 right whales (one of the most endangered species on Earth) was stymied by Vice President Cheney (another of the most endangered species on Earth). It might be a fair deal, the one for the other.

Inferno: The Fed is still fighting a liquidity problem because it cannot do anything about the insolvency problem. In a world of falling wages, rising unemployment, global wage competition, falling home prices, rising unemployment and gross overcapacity, there is no way the enormous amounts of debt can ever be repaid. If it cannot be, it will not be. Buckle up.

Goose Problems: Exxon may have made $11 billion, but the real story is that its worldwide oil production fell 10%. Production before profits.

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