Open Talk Tuesday

Yes, another in a continuing series ;-)

Continuation of the prior:

http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/12/06/open-talk-tuesday-3/

and the one before that:

http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/11/18/open-thread-thursday/

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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65 Responses to Open Talk Tuesday

  1. A general comment: Since we seem to be adding CO2 to the mix, we are also priming the rest of the biological cycle involved.

    I would predict from this that the increase in plant growth is adding oxygen, just as we are adding CO2. Some of that oxygen is tied up in plant mass (with the carbon), but much of it is re-released either immediately or quickly.

    This will be less obvious, as oxygen represents about 200,000 parts per million, not 400 — but the effect should be there.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  2. E.M.Smith says:

    Reviewing the stock charts here:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/12/15/global-stocks-survey/

    They continue to say be out of anything Emerging Markets or Europe.

    The brief rally we had in the USA (on a swing trade basis) evaporated quickly and the indicators are saying be out. (MACD and DMI both ‘red on top’) while the SMA lines are in a flat weave.

    Only thing in an ‘up trend’ on the stock charts is the TLT bond reverence.

    Even Gold is generally continuing the downtrend, though it had a minor blip up. We need to see significant short covering before it is ‘safe’ again.

    I think next up I need to do a Bonds reference page and a Currencies reference page, then I can tie those all together into a basis for a new style WSW posting. For now it’s all a “risk off” world and “duck and cover” until the Euro Zone works out if it wants to stay a zone or not… and China decides if it is going to be honest or not… and Brazil decides if it wants to embrace it’s “inner socialist” or not… and the USA decides, well, decides anything ;-)

    For now, continuing to sit in USD. Even the downtrending EU and ‘emerging’ stock markets as shorts are looking a bit late to play. Then again, I’m not emotionally geared to short trades yet. Still working on that. Long US Treasuries, short Euro, Euro stocks, Emerging stocks would likely work, if folks are fast swing traders.

    China put a restriction on exports of “Rare Earths”, so those stocks may rise, whenever the general market stops being under pressure.

    The text here is a bit out of date, but the charts are live, and they show these miners had a bubble and plunge, and are still headed down. Wait for signs of a reversal before jumping in, but they are worth watching:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2010/09/25/are-rare-earths-rare/

    Similar charts in this older story. It also has the South Korean ticker in it, that fell out of bed with the SPY a while back. It had a dip today (no real surprise) but might be worth watching too.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/07/04/two-rare-earth-stories/

    Charts here continue to show euro short and dollar up bets winning (eventually that will end, then again, shorting sovereign risk is an easy trade and shorting socialist overspending even easier. Just ask George Soros, that’s how he made his firs billions (maybe more of them… wonder what his currency trade book is today?…)

    Base metals are testing their prior bottom too:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/12/14/base-metals-vs-gold-and-silver/

    One could try a risky ‘early entry’ but I’d rather wait for a confirmed economic recovery and new trend.

    Maybe I need to make an ag commodities page while I’m at it. Yeah, the charts are in the last WSW, but I’m making the new ones, and that ought to be near the top of the todo list..

    At any rate, just reminding folks that not much is working other than “long dollar short other stuff”…

  3. George says:

    We know with 100% certainty that we can survive AGW and so can every other species alive today because every species alive today survived the Holocene Climate Optimum … which is the COLDEST interglacial climate optimum in 400,000 years.

  4. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-16223536 Check out the hockey stick jump when the computer arrives

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/climate20111214.html Climate change Computer JOKE OF THE DAY

    http://www.c3headlines.com/2011/12/science-by-lubchencos-noaa-fake-global-warming-by-changing-historical-temperature-data.html “Science” By Lubchenco’s NOAA: Fake Global Warming By Changing Historical Temperature Data
    To promote the global warming scare, Jane Lubchenco’s NOAA continuously changes past temperature records to create fake warming – on a monthly basis

    @ George bbbbbbbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

  5. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    Though we only got Polar Bears in the last 25,000 or so years, IIRC. So those poor suckers came along just about deep glacial (as a variety of Grizzly with which they can hybridize, so only a little different). Just in time to have a couple of the biggest wipsaws of temperature of the last “long time”. The exit from the glacial, the elder Oldrer Dryas and the Younger Dryas cold periods with the interstadials:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B%C3%B8lling_oscillation

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aller%C3%B8d_Oscillation

    When it got warm in a hurry…

    After all THAT, we got to the Holocene Optimum (with oceans higher than today and with temps higher).

    Pretty clear that Polar Bears can roll with the punches.

    (Though the arrival of the Remington 700 rifle put quite a dent in the populations…)

    It isn’t global warming that is a threat to species, it is:

    1) The chainsaw.
    2) The rifle
    3) Nets
    4) The bulldozer

    Everything else is chump change in comparison.

    (Though a case can be made that even hand saws took down a lot of forests)

    We need to use MORE fossil fuels so we need to clear LESS land for food and can have more aquacultured fish (that take electricity for lights and pumps) with less netted wild fish.

    I am very much a conservationist. We ought to be planting nuclear plants, greenhouses, fish farms, and using all the coal power we can too, exactly so that we can have more wild lands for wild species.

    Energy intensity REDUCES land intensity.

    @S.P.:

    That “Brrrrrr” clip is a great one!

    The Thames nitrogen is silly. They are panicky over 2 vs 7 mg N / L ? Sheesh… Trying to get back to ‘near zero’ is a waste of time and money.

    Sorry to see JPL also getting into the “Press Release model-pretending-to-be-scence” Global Warming scam… Oh Well, add another budget to the “just zero it” list…

    The NCDC article is interesting, but I don’t have the time to tease out how they showed the fudging. It would be good stuff to advertize if their method is hiding in there somewhere…

    Then again, we know they are cooking the books…. Suppose there are some folks who still need it ‘splained to them and need some added proof…

  6. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_prophet People who predict the future are False Prophets. “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.”

    Prophets are people who make predictions. Just because you have a computer, you can’t predict the future. Can the computer time travel? It’s a total joke. These schemes have been around since time began. Soothsayers/Prophets/Wizards/Jesters whatever you want to call them, it’s just a way to make money out of other people’s gullibility. These hoaxers and their computer models are exactly the same, just more sophisticated.

    Didn’t they used to burn these guys on the stake after their predictions didn’t come right?

    http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/Hoaxipedia/Medieval_End_of_the_World_Hoaxes

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Moon_Hoax

    http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-12-mystery-predators-contributed-fiscal-collapse.html

    Mystery predators lurking in the market. Maybe the same people that loved that change in the uptick shorting rule :P?

  7. Ralph B says:

    Mr Pumpernickel,

    I would say to be a prophet you have to “correctly” predict the future and not just once or twice but consistently. Still they do seem to have the same fate as those others…

  8. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Interesting video

    A three-foot-tall stone tablet from the first century B.C. may speak of an early Messiah and his resurrection.

    Hey, look like all those Greeks with Porsche earning <50,000 a year might be in trouble, the bankers are after them? http://www.happensingreece.com/?p=2031

  9. Matthew W says:

    Kim Jong Il Dead !!

    Will the son be dead/in prison within six months???

  10. H.R. says:

    Matthew W (13:11:14) :

    Kim Jong Il Dead !!

    Will the son be dead/in prison within six months???
    ======================================================
    I’ve been going back and forth on that one. Papa spent time preparing him to take over yet I don’t think Papa told him everything he needed to know. I can’t recall any photos of Papa preceeding Beloved Son down a steep flight of stairs ;o)

  11. j ferguson says:

    E.M. and all,
    If i may be forgiven another whack at the Climategate (x) tree:

    1. Stipulate that there was something embarrassing, the publicizing of which, would reveal illegal activity by one or two governments. Stipulate that it would be impossible to ignore or wash it away as with earlier discoveries. Suggest that this activity was underway at EAU but might not have had any connection to climate studies.

    2. Stipulate that the discovery of the leak resulted in an immediate demand to know the entire contents of the servers which could have been compromised by powers who would have been informed as to what could have been leaked. Think very high level in either or both governments – probably both.

    3. Stipulate that the plaintext for the “damning” emails is in the hands of the governments concerned. And clearly nothing of this gravity is in the plaintext parts of the emails so far released.

    5. CL1 is published. powers that be familiar with activities at EAU immediately request copies of what was on servers, find that material then published doesn’t include this information and let things slide with a few vacuous enquiries into the climate stuff.

    6. As realized by Mosher and revealed at Lucia’s, powers that be realize that more of the emails are about to be published, “Frank” tries to get RC to contact him, asking “What does RC want?” Whether there was a contact and whether Frank is a government agent is irrelevant. My guess is that RC/FOIA doesn’t “want” anything and this was an attempt to establish contact with the email holder “they” had so far not been able to identify.

    7.Climategate2 is publsihed but this time contains encrypted text for which FOIA (RC) says the key will not be released.

    8. Assume that it cannot be ascertained whether the critical damning information is in the encrypted sections, even by someone in posession of the plaintext, UNLESS, the holder of the plaintext is so enabled to decrypt the encrypted stuff.

    9. If the powers that be react as if the bad stuff is in CL2, then FOIA will know that they can decrypt it. If they don’t so react, it could be either way.

    10. To understand what could have happened here, consider the subject of the truly excellent 1973 Walter Mathau movie “Charlie Varrick.” The gist of the story is that Varrick is a low key bank robber who robs a small country bank expecting to get $50k or so. Instead the bank is holding millions in cash. Varrick is bright and realizes that small town banks don’t generally have millions in cash and concludes the place is a laundry for the mob. Now he has a problem with the authorities and the mob. he is much more worried about the mob. See the picture – it also has one of the great lines of all times, spoken by Joe Don Baker to a woman proposing to provide the evening’s entertainment.

    11. So our leaker, and the holder in due course of the EAU files may not now be the same person/persons. If the damning material is sufficiently damning, it may now be in the hands of another government, and I would suggest one that doesn’t currently maintain effective back-channel communications with US or UK.

    12. I would prefer not to suggest what the nature of an activity which could be discussed on EAU emails might be whose discovery could be damning at high government levels, but any of you with any familiarity with the kinds of research that defense departments sponsor here in the US can probably imagine what I am alluding to.

    And this TallBloke event is likely irrelevant or a cover for another action to take place in the next 30 to 60 days.

  12. E.M.Smith says:

    Well, the new Bonds chart pretty much confirms it. Sitting in $US or $US Bonds is what’s winning at the moment:

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/12/20/bonds-overview-charts/

    Subject to change if the Eurozone ever cleans house and gets it’s act together.

    Eventually the $US will join the party at the drunk tank, but not just now. As I’d said a week or three ago, in a “risk off” world, folks run to $US and Treasuries…

    I’m continuing to sit there until something shows me a usable trend…

    It would be nice to add a British Pound or Japanese Yen bond ETF chart, but I’ve not found one yet.

  13. PhilJourdan says:

    @Matthew W – Vaclav Havel dead as well. Seems we lost a good with a bad.

  14. j ferguson says:

    I would like to amend what I wrote above to include the possibility that the bad stuff wasn’t leaked, or if leaked importance may not have been understood by leaker. I suggest that the extent of the leaked material may not be known by the “authorities.”

  15. j ferguson says:

    One might also consider what quality of espionage is required during what appear to be peaceful times. My guess is that we all learned our lessons from the mistakes of the twenties and everyone who is able maintains watchful eyes.

    It might also be useful to consider that the watchful eyes do not only include the usual suspects, nor is necessarily their scope of focus on things we would think obvious.

  16. Adrian Vance says:

    All of this talk about CO2 controlling the atmosphere is nonsense.

    CO2 is a “trace gas” in air, insignificant by definition, 1/7th the absorber of IR, heat energy, from sunlight as water vapor which has 80 times as many molecules captures 560 times as much heat making 99.8% of all “global warming.” CO2 does only 0.2% of it.

    Carbon combustion generates 80% of our energy. Control and taxing of carbon would give the elected ruling class more power and money than anything since the Magna Carta of 1215 AD.

    The Two Minute Conservative at http://adrianvance.blogspot.com for political analysis, science and humor. Daily on Kindle.

  17. George says:

    Though we only got Polar Bears in the last 25,000 or so

    No, not true. Polar Bears are an adaptation of a much older species of brown bear. Put a population of those polar bears in an area that gets no snow and they will revert to brown. It is just that those with a white coat were more successful hunters, more successful at avoiding predators when they were young, and a white bear would be healthier (because he caught more food) and produce more offspring, eventually changing the majority population white.

    Ever seen a white German shepherd? If you had a feral population of them in a place that gets a lot of snow, they would probably do quite well. Ever notice that feral life in urban areas tends to select black cats? Their food is nocturnal, black cats eat better and hide better.

    Polar bears are descended from Irish brown bears. They are an adaptation, not a unique species.

    http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/332192/title/DNA_hints_at_polar_bears%E2%80%99_Irish_ancestry___

  18. @George:

    “Bad news … bears” hmm, in your last two comments?

    I wrote about polar bears five years ago, digging into their history and their status at the time, which was much better than it seemed from the news:

    http://level-head.livejournal.com/281389.html

    The Irish link you posted is new information to me. Polar bears seem to have split off from the brown bears about 500,000 years ago — or about five glaciations back.

    Interestingly, during the full glaciation period, polar bears cannot live at the pole, and migrate southward. We’ve got polar bear fossils from the last glaciation from Spain and Portugal.

    Polar bear and brown bears have a lot of differences now, including significant tooth changes. They can still, perhaps, interbreed, but they have certainly become very separate animals with utterly different requirements. Such interbreeding seems to be rare indeed if it happens, and as the article notes there are some potential problems with the interpretation there.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  19. E.M.Smith says:

    Looks like a big short cover / squeeze rally in stocks today. Folks covering shorts before they leave for a long holiday. I’d not make decisions based on a one day wonder. We’ve seen a lot of these.

    Yesterday Banc America broke below $5, and today the European Central bank says they will loan European banks money for 3 years. One day tanks, the next rockets. Just news driven volatility. Wait for a trend to show…

    @George:

    Um, I think we are saying the same thing. Maybe I was a bit imprecise, in that I used the term “Grizzly Bear” as a generic term for brown bear, but the Grizzly IS a “Brown Bear”. Yes, a specific sub-species (if you buy into the notion that these minor variations are actually different …) I avoided the use of the term ‘brown bear’ as many folks think that means the cute little brown versions of what is properly called a ‘black bear’ even when brown in color.

    The other name I thought of using was the Kodiak bear, as folks usually know it’s not a cute little bear.. but it is a somewhat unique sub-type, where traditionally the term Grizzly Bear has been widely applied (even to the California variation that mostly just was a bit blond…)

    Polar bears do have some unique features other than color. Paws and claws are very different, neck is longer, etc. But they freely cross with the various types of other “Brown Bears” (not brown colored black bears…) including the Griz and Kodiac and Irish and…

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grizzly%E2%80%93polar_bear_hybrid

    The particular set of variations that makes the Polar Bear is about 25,000 ish years old. You don’t find them in the last interglacial… Though there was some OTHER Polar bear with similar, but different DNA. About 100,000 years ago.. It is in a ‘clade’ with modern polar bears, but is not one…

    http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/news/100401_polarbears

    Exactly when the modern Polar Bear variation came along is an interesting question and it may well be that Irish hybridizing you pointed to. The timing is about right.

    But at this point we are on the verge of getting into a ‘what is is’ discussion of ‘what IS a polar bear’? IF the modern hybrid is the start of modern Polar Bears, they are very young. IF you count the elder clade member that is now extinct, they are as old as the end of the last interglacial.

    What I think is most ‘fun’ about it all isn’t the question of when is a Grizzley, Kodiak, or Other “Brown Bear” a Polar Bear… it’s the example that the Polar Bear gives of different “species” hybridizing to make a new “species” that is very different physically, yet genetically very similar. It reminds me of a certain Neanderthal Hypothesis ;-)

    @Keith deHavelle:

    It does happen (see the wiki on it) and a guy was charged with the crime of shooting an endangered polar bear, but was ‘let off’ when they showed it was a 50/50 hybrid. That, too, is now illegal to shoot, so he has what is the only legal mounted specimen of such…

    “How old are polar bears”, as noted above, is a bit of a ‘what is it’ question…

  20. Indeed. The idea that they may have split off only 130,000 years ago does not take into account the genetic effect of potential crossbreeding.

    I suspect that the “evolution at breakneck speed” didn’t happen that way. But of course, the Berkeley article is full of nonsense about catastrophic global warming, so you wouldn’t expect them to get other facts right.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  21. George says:

    during the full glaciation period, polar bears cannot live at the pole, and migrate southward

    Well, one isn’t going to find any pre-Holocene fossils anyway because that land is scraped to bare bedrock with every glaciation.

    Bears must migrate because they eat seals. Seals can not live where the ice is too thick for them to create holes from which to breathe and come out to rest. In fact, if all of the ice were to melt, polar bears would have a feast. Seals would be much easier to find … they would all be on the beach and wouldn’t be able to migrate very far to sea without returning (probably rather exhausted and easy to get) to the beach.

  22. @George:

    So polar bears have the reverse of a crisis: the loss of ice would fate their seals.

    Hmm. Would the glacial scrape affect caves? And higher mountains protruded even though the height of the Laurentide sheet, didn’t they?

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  23. E.M.Smith says:

    @Keith DeHavelle:

    Giggle…

    I suspect that a mile of ice would play hob with any cave opening. Best bet would likely be the ‘ice free passage’ back side of the coastal mountains of Alaska… Middle of Canada? Pretty much scrapped flat.

    @S.P.:

    Magnetic iron oxide…. who knew?

  24. George says:

    Everything growing/living in Canada would have been deposited someplace around Indianapolis, Indiana is my guess. Look there for Pleistocene fossils from Canada.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/australiaandthepacific/australia/8965155/Cold-Australian-summer-sees-swimwear-profits-plummet.html

    Coldest summer in Australia in 50 years.

  25. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh My! If only I could get one of those nice NSF Grants ….

    The “Bikini Index”: Visit beaches globally in summer. Count the number and percent of bikini’s per sq km. Plot. Secondary proxy: Historical sales of both bikini and one piece suits by region..

    I’m sure it would show a rapid rise in number and percentage of Bikinis from 1900 to about 1990… That ought to get a grant… as bikinis indicate warming as folks shed covering…

    Then we’d have to “Hide The Decline” recently as bikinis fall off, er, decline, er… oh dear ;-)

  26. Nude beaches, with nary a bikini in sight, are counted in bi-nary.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  27. E.M.Smith says:

    Bears:

    Look while you can, from the wiki:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grizzly_bear

    Stephen Colbert, the most objective and wise newscaster of all time, asserts that Bears are “godless killing machines” and are the number one threat to America. This is evident in the way that Bears more than any other animal kill simply for pleasure. The insatiable blood lust of Bears can never be quenched and therefore all must be destroyed in order to save the human race. Recent scientific studies have shown that all Bears are possessed at the moment of birth by demons from Hell, which explains their Satanic behavior. While high powered firearms such as .44 Magnum handguns or .50 BMG rifles may take down a Bear, a better defense is a squirt gun filled with holy water or a large cross that has been blessed by a priest.

    Probably will be ‘revised’ soon, but for now it’s very “Truthy”.. ;-)

    Wiki, gotta trust it!!!

  28. P.G. Sharrow says:

    Wow! building houses with mammoth bones! sounds like something I would do. Now days I use timbers and large rocks. Some of my friends call me the bear, my wife calls me Mr monkey arms because of my reach.
    Do you suppose they are being nice? ;-) pg

  29. Pingback: A Curiousity In Australia « Musings from the Chiefio

  30. Sera says:

    @ ‘Bears in Wiki’

    ROTF- vandalism, but still funny.

  31. E.M.Smith says:

    @P.G. Sharrow:

    Yes, they are being nice. But are they being honest? ;-)

    @George:

    I like that ‘spittoon’ link. AVERAGE of 2.5% Neanderthal and some much more… Yeah, I can agree with that ;-)

  32. E.M.Smith says:

    In staring at the various metals, stocks, and bonds graphs:

    It looks like US Stocks have made a ‘sort of a bottom’. There is still a small chance of another ‘fall of a cliff’ moment if some horrid news hits, but generally the ‘down excursions’ are holding above the prior ones. Still not a lot of momentum in any direction, but risk is reducing.

    Metals are either going nowhere or down depending on the metal. Not particularly a good thing, but it may just be China is not buying ahead of the season end. Still, if demand for products were up, tin and copper would be up.

    Bonds have been the best place to be, with US bonds best of all, but the yields are now very low (not much more The Fed can cut rates, so bond prices can’t rise much more) and we see that in the TLT chart. Three times in a row the prices approach the same point then we have “Failure To Advance”

    This suggests not much more upside in bonds.

    In essence, it looks like things are hitting a stagnation point.

    I’m going to continue looking for ‘things rising lower left to upper right’, but at the moment pickings are slim.

    IFF we get any good information about the US Economy picking up, and / or The Fed murmurs about maybe being done lowering rates and needing to think about raising them, Bonds will plunge and stocks will ‘take off'; That’s the trigger to watch for for a ‘reentry’.

    With the European zone still a mess, I’d wait on it. Easier to go to Indonesia or even Brazil. (Though Mexico is probably a tiny bit better). USA company reports have been good so far, so I expect the USA will lead in any ‘recovery’. Typically in the year before an election markets do well as the incumbent does not want to be running on a weak economy…

    However, this guy seems much more driven by ideology than caring about how well the economy works…

    If the Republicans had a better field of candidates, I’d feel better. As it is, this may actually be a horse race instead of a walkover. That would mean more unsettled until next November.

    For now, just sitting in $US or Japanese Yen FXY looks like a decent idea. Yeah, I wish I had better too, but I’,m not seeing it.

    I’m going to move on to making “sector” charts and then to looking again at individual companies in search of Mo Mentum… The individual stocks listed in the ‘Mo-Mo section of the last WSW posting have been an OK performing group, so that gives me some confidence that the method works OK; but it needs more polish… Outperforming a down market by being closer to flat is not exactly thrilling…

    So far, the Retail Sector has been doing OK, but that seasonal trade often ends about Christmas, so watch out for that…

    With that, I’m off to Sector Land and probably going to revisit the Foia emails

  33. George says:

    I didn’t read the bonds article closely. Did you mention the hemorrhage from equities to bonds?

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/45741694

    I’m not sure if this is being portrayed correctly. We have a large number of boomers turning 65 this year and the numbers start going up from there. It would be natural for these people to cash in their equity investments and convert to income as they retire. I am not sure they quite grasp the whole baby boomers cashing in all their stock investments and the younger generation not being able to afford to buy them, thing.

    Stocks are doomed for a while.

  34. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    I’m shifting method, so the recent financial postings have been more infrastructure than analysis (the “Metals Say?” posing was analysis – the others just the charts with description of how to read them)

    I’ve put interim analysis in minor comments here. So there wasn’t much to read in the bonds posting (other than how to read the chart and what drives those tickers so you can interpret them better).

    The intent being to replace the “Racing Stocks” tab that pretty much nobody used with links instead. Then the WSW posting becomes shorter and faster to make as it just lists a set of links to those infrastructure posts and my analysis of them.

    My references to the money move into bonds has been more oblique than saying “X $ moved to bonds”. I’ve talked about “risk on” vs “risk off” and said we are still in a “risk off” world. That implies moving from stocks to bonds, but does not state it explicitly.

    IMHO, the move to bonds has only a small connection to demographics. The money volume is dominated by the very rich, not the large number of very small accounts. Demographic trends also have slow and steady onset, where this had fast and step function onset. (Though there is a slower frequency move to bonds of a couple of years duration).

    IMHO, it has more to do with the “Yet Another Financial Meltdown” in the news and the possibility of another Financial Implosion in the banking system.

    Once that issue resolves, and with any kind of economic recovery, you will see a lot of money flood out of bonds into stocks. (Usually just about the first Fed rate hike that causes bond funds to report price drops – that is, the first time the monthly report shows your bond account lost you money). The question is just: When will that happen?

    At present it looks like “Not soon”. (So we end up at the same conclusion from different directions…) Europe will not have a ‘magic bullet’ fix. America will be in a malaise of sorts economically until either the election is over OR it is very clear the Republican candidate is going to win. With the Republicans giving us a choice between the village idiot, the nasty has-been, the rerunning-rerun suit, and the 7 dwarves: it’s very possible that could be a long while…

    At this point my suspicion is that the best fishing hole is likely US High Dividend stocks. “Paid to wait” but without the bond to stocks cycle risk.

    The other strategies that look good are bottom fishing very long cycle and / or finding selected high growth momentum stocks. Basically, when the average gives you nothing to work with, go inside it to smaller details.

    Related to this is that as you reach ever higher rates of swing from pops up to dips down, eventually that wave passes (as you pass from swing trading, through day trading…) and we return to long cycle slow frequencies. So at some point the strategy has to swap from “trade for now” to vely long slow “trade for years”. The time scope has to move back out to decade scale… On that scale, bottom fishing is a very good skill / strategy as is inherent growth. But are we there yet?

    The news flow is still about surprise risks, sovereign risks, political risks, etc. Fast cycle events. We’re not having reports of consistent economic and job growth from intrinsic growth. Until that, we stay fast cycle.

    I suspect that as long as the White House and Congress is dominated by market hating socialists and the Eurozone is reaping the consequences of the same: we’re going to stay like we are now…

    So I’m expecting that things will not change significantly until about June.

    Then again, “expecting at the market” is not very productive and watching the chars to tell you what all the OTHER money is doing works better, so I watch the charts. This is, after all, a game of Liars Poker…

    http://www.investopedia.com/terms/l/liars-poker.asp#axzz1hC0FS5Qj

  35. George says:

    Apparently Europe has intervened in the carbon emissions trading market.

    http://joannenova.com.au/2011/12/carbon-price-just-jumped-30-its-not-a-free-market-its-a-fixed-charade/

  36. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    That is another ‘stunning bit of hubris’ too, but these folks seem well equipped in that area… Corruption beyond belief is inevitable, and, IMHO, apparent.

    FWIW, IMHO, this will just accelerate the move of carbon using industrial processes to China and India (and maybe Brazil). As long as the EU continues to embrace this process, it will auger into the dirt.

    May it get there quickly so the USA doesn’t follow too closely behind…

    Carbon Quatloos is all they are…

    Which implies we are the Drill Thralls

  37. George says:

    Interesting read:

    http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~alcoze/for398/class/pristinemyth.html

    The Americas may not have been as “pristine” as we are led to believe before Europeans arrived and in fact, due to the massive depopulation of natives resulting from disease, many areas began to revert to their more natural state and the nature of many areas was quite different by the 1800s than it was in the 1600s.

    In fact, the Eastern Prairies of the US may have been created by the native populations and once they were decimated by measles and smallpox, forests began to expand into them.

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  40. P.G. Sharrow says:

    Email dropped to me by my wife, delete if you wish. pg

    Kasey McKnight
    Website Design

    http://monsterwebz.com

    530-370-5122
    >
    > Subject: Fw: Fwd: Warren Buffett fixing the congress
    >
    > I don’t know of any congressman who would put this forth as a bill, but maybe some brave soul might “do the right thing”
    >>
    >> ________________________________
    >> Subject: FW: FW: Warren Buffett fixing the congress
    >>
    >>>
    >>> He
    >>>>
    >>>>
    >>>> Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the
    >>>> best quotes about the debt ceiling:
    >>>>
    >>>> “I could end the deficit in 5 minutes,” he told CNBC. “You just
    >>>> pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of
    >>>> more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are
    >>>> ineligible for re-election.
    >>>> The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18
    >>>> year-olds took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified!
    >>>> Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971 –
    >>>> before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.
    >>>>
    >>>> Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took
    >>>> one (1) year or less to become the law of the land – all
    >>>> because of public pressure.
    >>>>
    >>>>
    >>>> Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this
    >>>> email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list;
    >>>> in turn ask each of those to do likewise. In three days,
    >>>> most people in The United States of America will have the
    >>>> message. This is one idea that really should be passed
    >>>> around.
    >>>>
    >>>> _*Congressional Reform Act of 2011*_
    >>>>
    >>>> 1. No Tenure / No Pension.
    >>>>
    >>>> A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and
    >>>> receives no pay when they’re out of office.
    >>>>
    >>>> 2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in
    >>>> Social Security.
    >>>>
    >>>> All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the
    >>>> Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow
    >>>> into the Social Security system, and Congress participates
    >>>> with the American people. It may not be used for any other
    >>>> purpose.
    >>>>
    >>>> 3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just
    >>>> as all Americans do.
    >>>>
    >>>> 4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise.
    >>>> Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.
    >>>>
    >>>> 5. Congress loses their current health care system and
    >>>> participates in the same health care system as the
    >>>> American people.
    >>>>
    >>>> 6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on
    >>>> the American people.
    >>>>
    >>>> 7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women
    >>>> are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not
    >>>> make this contract with Congressmen/women.
    >>>> Congressmen/women made all these contracts for
    >>>> themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a
    >>>> career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen
    >>>> legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then
    >>>> go home and back to work.
    >>>>
    >>>> If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it
    >>>> will only take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to
    >>>> receive the message. Don’t you think it’s time?
    >>>>
    >>>> THIS IS HOW YOU FIX CONGRESS!
    >>>>
    >>>> If you agree with the above, pass it on. If not, just
    >>>> delete.
    >>>> You are one of my 20+ – Please keep it going, and thanks.
    >>>>

  41. j ferguson says:

    Doesn’t sound like Buffet to me.

  42. George says:

    @E.M. Smith

    If you or any other reader is going to be traveling anywhere that it is remotely possible to get stuck in snow in a remote area (or even mud), I happened to recall a little trick I learned while I was in the Army. In your emergency bag, keep a couple of packages or orange gelatin … just the regular “Jell-o” will do. These are quite handy in signaling your location to rescue personnel and if dumped on snow or mud, will congeal and stay put and can often remain visible if slow blows over it.

    Tear off a corner of the package and pour out the contents to form an arrow pointing to your location if you can find a location that is free of obstructions and can be viewed from the air. Two such arrows at different locations will pinpoint your location to rescue personnel.

    Even of you can’t make an arrow, if you are injured, simply opening the package and making a stain in the snow or mud can make the difference. Orange is the international color of distress, is easily visible even among brush and trees from the air, and the gelatin, once wet, tends to stay put.

    In a dire emergency it can even be eaten after being placed on the snow for extra calories as it contains a good bit of sugar and protein.

    Of course, one of these won”t hurt, either:

  43. Jason Calley says:

    @ George “How could 69 Patriot missiles “walk”?”

    Well, obviously they couldn’t, not without Very Important People being part of the deal. Equally obvious, there is no way that you or I can find out for certain, but here is a (to me) reasonable explanation: The process of dismantling the economy, culture, legal system, and infrastructure of the US has been going on for at least four decades, with China being chosen as the next big superpower. The military and industrial technology of the US began to be moved in earnest to China during the early Clinton years. That period saw missile control techniques and circuitry (including both ICBM and cruise missiles) being passed along. Now, we are at the point that the US is so desperate for China to continue buying or holding Treasury Bonds that China can have what they wish. “You’ll buy another $10 Billion but you want some Patriot missiles? We can do that. Of course you won’t say anything in public about this, will you?”

    Prosperous people take money from their savings account to buy things. Poor people pawn their family heirlooms to but things. We are in the pawning stage.

    Just my opinion, but it is the most reasonable explanation, I think.

  44. Jason Calley says:

    @ P.G. Sharrow Those are good ideas, but the problem is still “who will bell the cat?” Asking the cat to bell itself has not been successful in the past.

    @ George Orange jello….brilliantly simple!

  45. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    Patriot Missiles don’t just “walk”… someone planned something.

    Smuggle to China? Undercover setup for S. Korea? Who knows…

    Doesn’t smell like a TLA op from our side, though. Rather sloppy. Looks more like a “smuggle cheap”… But there ought to be records of to whom they were sold, so somebody is going to be getting a very uncomfortable phone call / visit…

    @P.G. Sharrow:

    Technically that is a “chain letter” and typically email administrators quash chain letters on site as inherent evil. Why? Because they can have exponential growth, crashing servers, and often contain an implicit threat (“pass this on or bad luck follows”, etc.)

    In this case, though, it will stay. Why? Well, it’s a comment, so not going to crash and email server. It has not implicit threat. Oh, and I like the message ;-)

    @J. Ferguson:

    I’ve heard him talk in a style somewhat like that, but there are parts that are suspicious.

    First off, I think there is a missing quote at the end of the fourth line of the quote, just after “re-election.” That make the actual quote just those 4 lines. I could easily see him saying that. It has his style.

    It’s the ‘act’ with numbered bullets that does not seem to fit. And the making of the chain letter meme. It is more likely someone is ‘taking liberties” via interpreting his quoted comments into a chain letter with action items.

    In any case, I do like the sentiment ;-)

    Oh, and like the Orange Jello idea too…. But can I use Peach ?
    ;-)

    @Jason Calley:

    Um… “maybe”, but if that is the case, I think the “shipping” was arranged by someone other than one of our TLAs… I.e. the deal was “FOB Germany”…

    Per the “belling”: The Several States have it in their power to do so. All it takes is enough states to decide they wish to take back their power and authority. It would be unlikely, due to the risk of retribution on failure and the risk of a precedent that their state citizens might want to emulate with them…

    But quite “do able”…

  46. j ferguson says:

    E.M.
    Buffet said it in jest. The Email is fraudulent and has nothing to do with Buffet.

    BTW, I wouldn’t react badly to someone telling me I’m nuts in connection with my speculation that the EAU CRU leak might be more or other than what everyone thinks. My theory would explain the lackluster visible enquiry which might not represent a real balls-to-the-wall enquiry which is being conducted in background.

    I have some direct experience with a police investigation uncovering a problem of much greater gravity than the original matter, the enquiry into the original matter being put on hold – and much disimulation while the big deal was winkled out, and then buried because it would have been significantly embarrassing to a very important politician, not to mention a possible prosecution.

    but then it may be that the amount of speculation required to make anything out of this stuff is so out in the field that it isn’t worth contemplating.

    john

  47. George says:

    One might also consider what quality of espionage is required during what appear to be peaceful times. My guess is that we all learned our lessons from the mistakes of the twenties and everyone who is able maintains watchful eyes.

    Uhm, no. That is another “gift” that Jimmy Carter gave us. He basically decided when he was President that we no longer need a “human intelligence” capability (spies) and could do everything by technical means. The result was the complete gutting of America’s human intelligence capability that we have only just now started to attempt to rebuild and not with much success:

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/story/2011-11-21/lebanon-hezbollah-cia/51328918/1

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/envoy/iran-tv-airs-alleged-confession-iranian-american-spy-142959055.html

    We are seen as bumbling and inept in this area now after basically dismantling one of the best human intelligence networks on the planet.

  48. Jason Calley says:

    @ E.M. “Um… “maybe”, but if that is the case, I think the “shipping” was arranged by someone other than one of our TLAs… I.e. the deal was “FOB Germany”…

    Good points — but that makes me think of another possibility. This may very well have been shipped per instructions from a TLA, but done this way because the TLA desired that the shipment be caught. Here is an example from history. Most people of a certain age remember the purported Gulf of Tonkin incident which was used to justify US entry of ground troops into Viet Nam. Not many remember that there were actually TWO incidents used as justification. One was the Gulf thingy, but the other was the simultaneous capture (along the coast of South Viet Nam) of a North Viet Nam owned junk, said ship being heavily loaded with arms being smuggled into SVN for Communist rebels. The combination of reported attack on a US ship and smuggling of arms to communists in SVN was what pushed Congress into authorizing Johnson to act. Of course it was decades later that the fact was released that the ship had been loaded by the CIA and its capture was pre-planned.

    Perhaps the news in another week or so will say “China attempts smuggling Patriot missiles to Syria!” Or Iran. Or Pakistan. Or North Korea. Heck, maybe the DEA was sending them to Mexican drug gangs. :) Or maybe the story will just go away. This will be interesting to watch, and how it develops will be a good clue to what has actually transpired.

  49. j ferguson says:

    George,
    of course you are right. I was thinking of the period when gentlemen didn’t read other gentlemen’s mail. Signal detection is made much harder without a stream to pick it out of, one of the many many things that Jimmeh didn’t understand.

  50. Jason Calley says:

    @ E.M. “Um… “maybe”, but if that is the case, I think the “shipping” was arranged by someone other than one of our TLAs… I.e. the deal was “FOB Germany”…

    E.M., for some reason I keep thinking about what you said above. OK, here is my final guess, at least until more information becomes available. They were not from the US or any of its agencies. They were being shipped from Israel and on their way to a drop off for North Korea.

  51. E.M.Smith says:

    @Jason Calley:

    Sorry, you lost me there… Why would Israel want to help N. Korea who is helping Pakistan and Iran? And why in the world would they ship to Germany first? (Easier to put them on a boat in an Israeli port – can’t ship overland anyway…)

    I’d be more inclined to think a Turkish origin. They trade a lot of stuff with Germany, have access and not too much bookkeeping, and kind of like who N.Korea is helping… Washing them through Germany would also keep it out of the eyes of folks watching Turkish origin ships… Then again, France seems to be willing to sell anything to anyone… I doubt we’ll ever know…

  52. George says:

    Study the reaction of the narcissist to criticism and I will show you the reaction of “The Cause” to climate skeptics.

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  54. George says:

    Looks like that big blocking high pressure that’s been preventing any storms moving in might be starting to break down. I sure hope so, it has been so dry here.

  55. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    I’ve forgotten where “here” is for you… California? It’s normal for California to have a drought when it’s a cold phase. (The skiing in the mid 70s was terrible…)

  56. George says:

    I live about 15 miles from you, near Cupertino.

  57. George says:

    And I work a bit North of you. I honk my horn and waive each time I drive by, you mean you haven’t noticed? :))

  58. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    Is that you? Didn’t you notice the shoes being tossed? ;-)

    OK, we’re both in the “California Drouth Area” ala 1970s when the skiing was horrid. I’m kind of hoping we get the 1950s like heavy rains and snows first, but by the ’70s it was all dry all the time. Given that the ‘turn’ was about 1998, that makes about the same as the ’60s now, headed for ’70s (but trying to calibrate that parallel is very shaky… )

    I suppose we still need the “snow in the central valley” of the ’60s before we can declare it is the drought ’70s… Then again, I think the weather had sporadic drought years even in the ’50s and ’60s (IIRC that was the genesis of the California Water Projects). I really ought to look that up…

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