Tuesday, September 29, 2009


16 years ago tomorrow- Big Picture CD Release

That's right, 9/30/93 was the CD release concert for Big Picture self titled CD. It seems like, oh, 16 years ago. I found their CD on Monday looking through some old boxes and it is already on my mp3 player. I used to listen to it incessantly and i always wished they would have put out more music but like so many bands it didn't happen.

Big Picture was a Genesis (Gabriel era) cover band before they did their own music and John O and I would travel out to the burbs to see them once a month for at least a year or so. It was fun for us because we love the music but I know it couldn't have been to lucrative for them since we were often a tenth or more of the audience. Still, they were good musicians who loved the music.

Later they told us they weren't going to being playing any more and that was the end of an era for us. There just weren't any more Genesis cover bands in the area. (RIP Harlequin and Cinema Show.) It is fun to listen to their music and reminisce. My life changed a great deal shortly after this. John and I moved to the north side. I started making money trading. It was the end of our youth as southsiders living our parochial lives as the world opened up.

I tried looking up the band but didn't find much. Funny though I did find a Russian website dedicated to Prog rock which mentioned this CD. If the Pieper brothers or any one from Big Picture finds there way to this website please leave a message. And if you decide to play again know that you will have two fans that will drive any distance to see you.

Diego: This CD is on my iPod. I wasn't at the release party but I picked up a copy at one of their shows.

Monday, September 28, 2009


LRAD used at G20 meeting in Pittsburgh

Gee, I hope those anarchists violent leftist punks didn't get hurt.


Saturday, September 26, 2009


Palin got it right about the financial crisis

I could not have written it better myself. I am not jumping on the Palin wagon yet, my last political crush did not work out so well, but if she is this honest about our economic failings and the rest of the GOP has nothing to say then who else could I support.

Lack of government wasn’t the problem. Government policies were the problem. The marketplace didn’t fail. It became exactly as common sense would expect it to. The government ordered the loosening of lending standards. The Federal Reserve kept interest rates low. The government forced lending institutions to give loans to people who, as I say, couldn’t afford them. Speculators spotted new investment vehicles, jumped on board and rating agencies underestimated risks…

How can we discuss reform without addressing the government policies at the root of the problems? The root of the collapse? And how can we think that setting up the Fed as the monitor of systemic risk in the financial sector will result in meaningful reform? The words “fox” and “hen house” come to mind. The Fed’s decisions helped create the bubble. Look at the root cause of most asset bubbles, and you’ll see the Fed somewhere in the background. [Emphasis added.]


Friday, September 25, 2009


Zelaya and Blagojevich

If Obama thinks that Manuel Zelaya should be in power in Honduras does he also think that Rod Blagojevich should be in power in Illinois? I wonder if Blago will suggest that as he makes his media rounds.


Crazy Congress

This is bigger than health care. This is no way to legislate: Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., himself admitted that “This probably sounds a little crazy to some people that we are voting on something before we have seen legislative language.”

I am hoping that the result of this year's congressional activities and town hall debates is a wider recognition of and a subsequent demand for change in our legislative process.


All the Single Babies!!

Can't go wrong with babies dancing. Kanye's favorite video seems to have inspired the youth of the nation into a diaper shaking frenzy. Here is the original.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009


School kids taught to praise Obama

Obligatory, can you imagine if they were taught to say this about George Walker Bush? I actually searched for this on youtube before I posted the little brainwashed sheep darlings just in case there was an overzealous Bush supporting teacher some where. Nothing. Now the big question is do the parents care? After all it is New Jersey so if they don't then this video only qualifies as creepy, not full on propagandizing.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009


The fall of Little Green Footballs

I've known for a long time that the proprietor of LGF, Charles Johnson, has a problem with religion. Over the years his rhetoric has gotten nastier and other blogs have come along which did what Johnson's did but better. I rarely visit LGF any more and it is with a little sadness that I have decided to delink Johnson's blog. Not that it will affect him but as a matter of principle. Either he has none or he has lost his mind, either way, I don't want to lend a hand to him any more.

If you want to read about what has happened here are some links covering part of the Little Green Meltdown.

LGF bans and blocks Atlas Shrugged

Mad King Charles, Lord of the Lizards, was deriving advertising revenue generated by traffic to a site where he didn't have to do much of anything except maintain the community of commenters. So he shifted into neutral and coasted. He seems to have handed over control of the community to a handful of stooges. (Who is this "Sharmuta" and why do all the ex-Lizards hate her so much?)

The "updings"/"downdings" feature, with its resulting "karma" score, was crucial to the creation of the third-grade playground atmosphere at LGF, where people competed for popularity among their peers. This organizational dynamic was like a magnet to attract the types of toadies and sycophants that Shug denounces.

The Other McCain has a lot more on this so go to his site if you want to read about it. I really don't have the stomach to follow this descent into insanity.



Mud Volcano

In Yellowstone NP

Monday, September 21, 2009


Big Sky

Evening in Montana

Morning in Montana


FYI: Jeter Still trails Baines

This is a week or so old but still good, especially if you are a White Sox fan. Derek Jeter recently was honored for achieving more hits than any other New York Yankee. As the Onion title aptly points out: Derek Jeter Honored For Having Fewer Hits Than Harold Baines:

Following Derek Jeter's 2,722nd career hit Friday, Yankee fans and teammates took a moment to honor the all-star shortstop for having 144 fewer hits than former journeyman designated hitter Harold Baines.

Jeter, who reached the historic milestone in the third inning of his team's game again Baltimore, joined a pantheon of Yankee greats that includes Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, and Lou Gehrig—all of whom share the distinction of having fewer career hits than Baines, a one-time winner of the Silver Slugger Award.

If I'm not mistaken, Baines has more hits and RBI's than any eligible player not in the Hall of Fame.

Friday, September 18, 2009


The hypocrisy of the Fed

It's nice to see that someone gets it in regards to risk taking and the Fed's easy money policies.

But riddle me this Bat-readers: Isn't it more than a tad hypocritical for the Fed to be trying to tell banks that too much risk is a bad thing?

After all, the Fed has kept its key overnight bank lending rate near 0% since December and has shown no indication that it will raise this rate anytime soon.

And the Fed has pumped trillions of dollars into the financial system through a variety of programs in order to try and get banks to loan more again. The business of lending is inherently risky. So what kind of message is the Fed trying to send here?

The thing is that encouraging risk taking is necessary know because there is an excess of timidity among almost everyone. Deflation can do that to you. The hard part about being a central banker is to know when to curtail speculation when the bubble is inflating and everyone is enjoying the party. Greenspan failed at that and here we are.

This article is about the disconnect between the need for bankers/investors to take risks and the message coming from the White House that compensation should be structured to discourage risk taking. They are fighting the last war-against excess speculation- and it might cause them to lose the war against deflation. (Of course, I don't believe you can win against deflation but the gov't can make things worse.)

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Matisyahu One Day


Thursday, September 17, 2009


The trend is still up, however...

...we are at critical levels. If the Dow can get and stay above 10K that would be a powerful sign that the March low (Approx. 6,500) is the low and that a superbull market has taken hold. Right now it is a coin flip over this but the important fact is that the trend is up and you never fight the trend. The resistance we are in is from last fall, just look at the above linked chart and imagine horizontal lines from the correction highs. To better understand the trend draw lines under the ever rising lows from last March.

If the trend ends, and I will let you know, there are two possibilities. 1) New lows or a correction of the up trend. We will have to see how this unfolds after the trend ends and that could be soon and it could be from Dow14,000. Again, don't fight the trend.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Flaming Lips alert

The world`s most unpredictable and entertaining experimental rock band, THE
FLAMING LIPS,are gearing up for a busy fall. First up, the band will appear on
Comedy Central`s The Colbert Report on September 16th, which airs that night at
11:30 p.m. ET. Check local listings for details.

The LIPS` brand-new double-album, EMBRYONIC will be available online in its
entirety for a limited-time only at http://www.colbertnation.com/ immediately
after Wednesday night's show through Monday, September 21. This will be the
first complete airing of the album in advance of release and the first time The
Colbert Report has presented any album by an artist.

They will also be appearing on Conan O'Brien's show on October 13th.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Top of the World

The Grand Teton

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Grand Teton National Forest

Wild life

Ski Lake

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Hey, you know what would be a good idea right now? A Trade War.

Wouldn't want to back off on a campaign promise even though we are depending on the Chinese to finance Obama's massive spending program.

In one of his first major decisions on trade policy, President Obama opted Friday to impose a tariff on tires from China, a move that fulfills his campaign promise to "crack down" on imports that unfairly undermine American workers but risks angering the nation's second-largest trading partner.

The decision is intended to bolster the ailing U.S. tire industry, in which more than 5,000 jobs have been lost over the past five years as the volume of Chinese tires in the market has tripled.

It comes at a sensitive time, however. Leaders from the world's largest economies are preparing to gather in Pittsburgh in less than two weeks to discuss more cooperation amid tensions over trade.

I'm sure the Chinese realize that this is just political posturing and they will react calmly.

China decried a U.S. decision to impose added duty on Chinese-made tires, saying the move sent a dangerous protectionist signal before a G20 summit and could stoke reactions impeding global recovery.

See, no problems. The One's charm will win them over.

But the White House played down the dispute, saying it was simply "enforcing the rules of the road" and did not expect the matter to escalate into a trade war.

They are not expecting a trade war! Yeah!! Let's keep an eye on the next treasury auction and see how this campaign promise works for the United States.

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Friday, September 04, 2009


Van Jones eats babies, loves murdering white people

Ok, that is the over the top. I should apologize. Here it goes. If anyone is offended by the title of this post even though I am under the influence of alcohol, then I apologize. Now that I have thought about it for a couple of seconds I should change it. That should cover it.

In recent days some in the news media have reported on past statements I made before I joined the administration -- some of which were made years ago. If I have offended anyone with statements I made in the past, I apologize. As for the petition [9/11 statement] that was circulated today, I do not agree with this statement and it certainly does not reflect my views now or ever.

Kinda Durbinesque, huh?

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