Katherine Harris, Florida’s secretary of state, might know a thing or two about election law, but apparently she never got around to learning one wee little detail. The girl just doesn’t know when to quit, does she? =,
Shatterproof Glassman Say you wrote a book. A book called Dow 36,000 -- a book that, with a little hindsight, looks absolutely nuts.
What do you do -- can you salvage your reputation? Should you hide under a rock? Look sheepish? Turn in your economist's license and change your name to Basil Exposition?
Not if you're Jimmy Glassman -- because for you, your China-sized chutzpah means never having to say you're sorry. Especially when you can blame your critics instead.
Ex-Clintonite economist Brad DeLong gets this just about right:
There are two different Dow 36000 books that they could have written. The first would say four things:
It looks like stocks held for a very long periods -- 30 years or more -- are no riskier than bonds.
If you valued stocks on the same cash-flow principles as you valued bonds, the Dow would be valued at 36000. . . .
The second book would say:
THE DOW SHOULD BE WORTH 36000 NOW!! THE DOW WILL BE WORTH 36000 SOON!! IF YOU DON'T BUY STOCKS NOW, YOU ARE MISSING THE ALMOST-CERTAIN OPPORTUNITY TO TRIPLE YOUR MONEY OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL YEARS!!
Which book did they write? Look at the full title and subtitle: DOW 36,000 : The New Strategy for Profiting from the Coming Rise in the Stock Market. The point made in the subtitle is not that over the long run cash flows paid to stockholders give them a superior return over bonds . . . [but] that stock prices are going to rise. Read their Atlantic Monthly article summarizing their book if you are skeptical.
Which book are they now pretending that they wrote? I leave that as an exercise to the reader.
Mr. Glassman? Nice try at rehabbing your reputation in order to look more like an scholar and less like a hack. But we're onto you. Your colleagues are onto you. And unlike your friends in the conservativepress, we're not letting you offso easy. So here's my advice: the next time The Wall Street Journal calls you, here's what you should say:
"Hello, this is Basil Exposition with British intelligence!"
Do they mean that if an investor buys the Dow 30 now and then holds these stocks for some unspecified period of time he will be handsomely rewarded because the index will eventually reach 36000?
No kidding! Really? Amazing! . . .
All Glassman and Hassett are saying is the same thing every two-bit broker says over a few cocktails: “In the long run, stocks always go up.” Every element of that seemingly profound statement is true. Pick almost any “long run” -- 10-, 20-, and certainly 30-year period -- and you will find that the major stock indexes (i.e., “stocks” as a group, rather than a particular stock) appreciated, usually substantially.
That’s our view and we’re giving it to you for free.
Vermont governor Howard Dean -- the presidential candidate who's an ostensible longshot -- swung through Atlanta city hall the other day, and laid out an even better position on guns than I'd expected. Here's how he said it: he's got no time for gun control, but that's because he's from Vermont, where there is no homicide problem. If he signed a law taking away a rifle handed down by someone's grandfather, he'd be toast. But -- but -- who's to tell Atlantans what do about guns when they've got a big homicide problem? Not Vermont. The best policy, then, is to let state and local governments, handle gun control on a case-by-case basis -- a policy that allows for the fact that states' and cities' needs are pretty wildly divergent.
Once again, the advantage here goes to Dean. Watch out for this fella -- if he gets money, he could be dangerous.
Surprise, surprise -- two of the largest contributors to the Bush-Cheney 2000 recount machine were Halliburton and Enron. Who'd have thunk it.
Keeping up the Cheney chase: Cursor.org, who keeps tabs on our elusive vice president so we don't have to. He was in Des Moines on Tuesday raising cash for the Iowa GOP, which kept him way too busy to answer questions about Halliburton.
Misunderstanding the Point Query: what's the point of making one of the most forbidding places on Earth a cinch to get to? Don't ask me, but you might want to put that question to the folks who plan to expand the runway at Nepal's Shyangboche Airport -- located 12,204 feet above sea level, just a stone's throw from Mt. Everest.
The whole purpose of a trip to Everest is adventure, I've always thought. The world would lose that if the mountain were just a plane-change away on Singapore Airlines. Let's think about something greater than convenience here -- let's respect the mountain and leave the airport alone.
Sad Mac Update, Day Four Trusty DiskWarrior went whacking away at my hard disk for 70 hours, sniffing for glitches and snooping for problems wherever it could see. Considering how much faster the program seemed to be rolling along, I was starting to feel downright heady.
Then Mother Nature tossed a thunderstorm our way just long enough to knock the power out. Now I'm back to square one. And it looks like DiskWarrior might need a couple of days to get its groove back. [If, that is, it was working at all.]
Curse you, Red Baron!
About This Post: What's the Sad Mac? Well, if you're an Apple owner and your Mac feels hunky-dory, you'll see a smiling icon in the shape of one of the original Macs. When your Mac swallows something bad, though -- a fried circuit, or a seriously rancid system folder -- your computer lets you know at startup by ditching the smiley face for a Mac that looks like it needs a trip to poison control. That's the Sad Mac (see left) -- and it can ruin your day faster than just about any non-fatal illness known to man.
Na Na, Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey . . . . . . goodbye to the Ford Excursion, the SUV brute that burns 12 miles per gallon to push its 3½-ton self around. Considering how much they dwarfed other cars on the road, it was tough for many drivers to feel safe around them. And considering how out of control our air pollution problems are, the Excursion only made matters worse.
I don't expect everyone to get religion and drive gas-sipping hybrid cars from now on. Still, I'd call dumping the Excursion a good start.
Failing Your Way to Success Take a look at this morning's Financial Times; an investigative report in today's edition tracks down executives from the 25 largest corporations to go bankrupt over the last 18 months, and documents that they walked away with a total of $3.3 billion. [Here's the teaser.] "Of the 208 executives and directors included in the survey," the paper reports, "52 individuals grossed more than $10m, 31 more than $25m, 16 more than $50m, and eight more than $100m."
Ahhh, that sounds to me like the free market at work -- right, Mr. Glassman?
Note: Not to worry, Sen. Lieberman -- I'll stay lighthearted about this. After all, we wouldn't want to sound too anti-business, eh?
Just a Harmless Little Plug Ever say to yourself, "gosh dang, if only that Greg Greene peckerhead would give us folks out here some way to buy him knick-knacks and whiz-bang gadgets?" Well, today's your lucky day: now you can. Supplies are limited, though, so shop today!
What's frightening is how much the article reads like fact. ["Wall Street responded strongly to the Bush speech, with the Dow Jones industrial fluctuating wildly before closing at an 18-month low. The NASDAQ composite index, rattled by a gloomy outlook for tech stocks in 2001, also fell sharply, losing 4.4 percent of its total value between 3 p.m. and the closing bell."] When life's like an Onion article, you know you're in trouble.
Just one more time, God -- what did we do to deserve this?! =,
Sad Mac Update: Day 3 Still no relief. DiskWarrior has had the drive whirring away for 48 hours and counting. There's a dialog on the screen that tells me I can cancel if I'd like -- after this long? fat chance -- but that's pretty much it. The progress bar seems to be speeding up, though.
Maybe this'll turn out okay, and I'll be spared the trouble of taking her to a clinic or shipping her out to Cupertino. I'm starting to wonder, though, whether the upgrade to an iBook might need to happen sooner than I'd planned. <--sigh-->
One More Reason to Hug Bud Selig Sportswriter Frank Deford, in an in-depth bio piece on America's accidental commissioner from the All-Star break issue of Sports Illustrated, sneaked in a great anecdote about how President Bush, if Selig hadn't been so bent on running Major League Baseball himself, might have gone for that job and never bothered with running for Governor of Texas.
Guys, is it too late for a switch-up?
Over at the Daily Kos, meanwhile, they've come up a stroke of genius: cure baseball's ills by contracting the Yankees. I'm 100 percent down with that -- and no, I would never just say that out of self interest . . .
Boston Globe columnist Ron Borges still wonders whether cycling counts as a sport at all. "Does the ability to sit . . . [and] pump your legs like a madman make you a great athlete," he asks, "or merely a guy who does better without training wheels than most people?" Mmmmm-hmm. Tell you what, Ronnie -- let's pack you off to the Alps for a week with a sweet ride and let you unathletically pump your legs through those cute little hills to your heart's content. He ought to make it look like a breeze.
But enough about that. Congrats, Lance. Best of luck prepping to snare win #5.
Further, there is no such thing as "the markets". They are not monolithic entities, but just a simple collection of human beings. Thus, they will react as human beings react - and right now, the human beings that make up the markets do not trust the accountants and the CEOs, so they are abandoning them. Over-regulation has nothing to do with it - fear of fraud does.
Sad Mac Update After running Norton Utilities and getting a scare-the-bejesus-out-of-me warning message about 2,050crosslinked files, I lost any and all impulse I had to get out and hike the mountain like I'd planned. So I poked through the list, hoping my brain would figure out something to do.
That was a bad move. Did it just kill my Word files, as painful as that would have been? No. It napalmed Photoshop. Torched Dreamweaver. Nuked half my *.mp3s and went slaphappy through my system fold--
Wha?! System folder?!! Auuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugh!
After screaming like a banshee all the way to the Lenox SquareApple Store, I stopped hyperventilating for long enough figure out that I might want to get some tech support before buying Mac OS X 10.1 and a new hard drive. I carted myself to the Genius Bar, and reeled off the whole sad story. After batting through a couple of quick questions -- nope, Norton didn't work; nope, can't reinstall the OS -- he pointed me to this little program called DiskWarrior that he swore by as the only disk utility he ever used.
Considering how that sounded a lot cheaper than a new hard disk, I went straight to the checkout counter.
I've been running DiskWarrior for 18 hours now, and it's still whirring away at what's left of all those crosslinked files. It's been a long wait through the triage, but better that than a total data loss. Wish me luck.
And Now, Some Momentary Self-Congratulation <--dah-dah-dah-dah-daaaaaaaaaaaa-daaaah-dah-dum--> You say it's your birthday!
<--dah-dah-dah-dah-daaaaaaaaaaaa-daaaah-dah-dum--> It's my birthday too, yeah!
<--dah-dah-dah-dah-daaaaaaaaaaaa-daaaah-dah-dum--> You say it's your birthday!
<--dah-dah-dah-dah-daaaaaaaaaaaa-daaaah-dah-dum--> We're gonna have a good time!
Happy birthday to me/Happy birthday to me/Happy birthday to me . . .