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September 29, 2008


Bill in AZ

This whole thing is the October surprise. Based on what Rove ferreted out about who voted for and against, the way Obama, Pelosi, etc don't seem to view this as the "emergency" it supposedly is, there are too many things pointing to this as simply being a manufactured crisis to make "Bush's failed economy" front and center for the last 5 weeks of the election. Everything else (other than Bristol smoking pot) - energy, Iraq, Afghanistan, is out of the news.

Somehow, Paulson managed to convince Bush enough that he has put his weight behind it and made it a huge crisis. My mortgage lender called me again last night, like they have about once a month since forever, wondering if I need a second - so I talked to him. Told him that according to the media, ya'll are broke and going under, we're all gonna die, so it won't matter if I get a 2nd or not. He laughed, said they're fine, most of them are fine, a few banks hit the shoals for various bad management reasons, etc. I declined the 2nd anyway.


National interest? Princess Pelosi? Pshaw!! Surely you jest. Tis 100proof political blood that runneth through her veins. She learned the political scheme whilst a little girl, tutored at her father's knee.

Emanuel has received assurances from Pelosi that she will not allow what he termed a "witch hunt" to take place during the next Congressional session over the role Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac played in the economic crisis.
Quick! All moderates centrists and independents ... Look Away! Look Away! Lest you risk cognitive dissonance on moral equivalence.

Hey BillinAZ

I just got a letter last night from Rabobank and Golden Harvest(a seed company) saying I was gauranteed for $75k in seed purchases, just sign and return the form. It is a legit deal, and was unsolicited. I think this credit crisis is rather localized. Paulson needs to answer some questions from somebody that knows the right ones to ask.



The low interest and free credit card offers don't seem to have slowed down any either.

Amused bystander

But Bill in AZ, it looks like it is really going to work.

How is it countered?

The beginning of Oct, and look at the race.

ow can Mccain srill pull it out and why is he still championing this bill. Who is telling him this nonsense. He had a PERFECT moment to turn this around and he did not. He fell for the bait.

A few weeks ago Obama said something to the effect of "You have NO idea what you are dealing with". Looks prophetic now.

Bleak times indeed. I do not share the notion that we just wait for it to swing back our way in few years.

The democrats will be entrenched for a generation or more, and the country will never recover, if you ask me.

Bush 2 was never this up in the polls this late in the game as Obama is now.

If the Democrats will go to this length to win, what will they do once the control the Hill and the WH.

The beginning of the end.

Rick Ballard

"I think this credit crisis is rather localized."

Sure it is. That's why LIBOR has spiked to an all time high and interbank lending has frozen up.

``The money markets have completely broken down, with no trading taking place at all,'' said Christoph Rieger, a fixed- income strategist at Dresdner Kleinwort in Frankfurt. ``There is no market any more. Central banks are the only providers of cash to the market, no-one else is lending.''

You might want to sign up for that loan. If it's based on a fixed rate, that is. If it's based on a variable rate then it's tied at some level to LIBOR, in which case some consideration of when the game isn't worth the candle comes into play. After all, $2 corn doesn't leave much room for profit.

Charlie (Colorado)

Now, You wanna know how much mortgage paper a company have, say, a couple hundred employees and needing to make payroll has???? Not much I bet.

How about a Fortune 100 company? I've been saying for the whole time that they were the ones who were most likely to not make payroll. Maybe today. Maybe they'll get a bye today; the CFOs may have pulled enough for this payroll early.

Well, guess what: if Ford can't pay its payroll, little banks in Dearborn will be a in a wort of hurt.

Look, Po, you just keep repeating these utter fantasies:

  • that you can "let them burn" without being in the fire yourself (what did you just tell us about not being able to get, what, beans?) and taking the rest of us with you

  • that your little local bank is somehow going to be insulated from a financial collapse.

Charlie (Colorado)


Sign it and see if they send the money.


what did you just tell us about not being able to get, what, beans?) and taking the rest of us with you

What I said was that last night, due to the markets being locked down, I couldn't forward contract to sell beans. With the market being off the limit today, I should be able to sell again. The market WILL unlock. Might not like the price very much, but it will. Neophytes. We've been fighting this all summer. Welcome to my world.


If it's based on a variable rate then it's tied at some level to LIBOR,

Rabobank terms.

$3500 to 9999 Prime plus 1%
10,000 to 19,999 Prime
20,000 to 39,999 Prime minus 1%
49,000 and over Prime minus 2%.

Cash discounts by purchase date on top of that.


that you can "let them burn" without being in the fire yourself

What I beleive is that this isn't the Great Chicago Fire. One building can burn, or even a whole block, without losing the entire city.


JMH, tangled web bejewelled, indeed.
Who are the shrewd? Your formatting, too, was amazing.

Rick Ballard

Rabobank is Dutch - it's also leveraged 50% higher than either WaMu or Wachovia was at failure. It's carrying derivatives with a claimed value higher than it's total equity. It's a little stronger than Fortis.


Not exactly Littletown Bank and hardly immune to a liquidity freeze.


After all, $2 corn doesn't leave much room for profit.

Man, where have you been?? COP this year is around $3.00.

COP next year is projected around %5.00

COP last year was #2.75.

COP in 03 was around $1.50.

See what I mean about inflation?


Not exactly Littletown Bank and hardly immune to a liquidity freeze.

Didn't say that it was or that it is. Merely mentioning that there still appears to be credit available. Lets say I go buy $40,000 worth of Golden Harvest seed today. I get my 10$ cash discount and get it financed at Prime minus 2.

What happens if Rabobank goes under or get merged?


"National interest? Princess Pelosi? Pshaw!! Surely you jest. Tis 100proof political blood that runneth through her veins. She learned the political scheme whilst a little girl, tutored at her father's knee."

I thought it was strictly business.


Distaffed, his minions lubbing, 'Bamlet tried
His hand upon own tiller, plied, but gaffed,
Soon sideswept by foul swift boat testing surf.

::Appluading, having risen to my feet::

Rick Ballard

"What happens if Rabobank goes under or get merged?"

You might want to check the call provisions on the loan. Such an event may give them the right to ask for all their money back. Immediately.

JM Hanes


In the Kerry version the shrewd referred to Kerry/Omelet himself, but these days I suppose it might as well be the whole Intellectual Elite. This morning it seems so obvious to me that instead of 'Bamlet, I should have used M. Simon's Ø and called him Ømlet! Ø well. Misplaced a couple Rosencrantz's in the process too, but it was pretty late when I finally hit Post!

The formatting thing was truly bizarre. When it finally came out right and I tried to add the note to sbw, above the "pre" tag, that part came out fine, but 'Bamlet suddenly reverted to double spaced text all over again. Ditto when I tried to add Act III Scene I, inside the tags. It's a puzzlement! The whole looked like an insane mess in this pre-preview window. Fortunately, I'll only need to sort it out once every four years.


And, JMH, as a cut, as Mercutio said:

No, 'tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church-door; but 'tis enough,'twill serve.


Re: Strong

I don't like the Obama's a hypocrite. That makes a judgment the viewer has to make for him- or herself.

Give the evidence. Make it obvious. Then say "it makes sense to vote McCain on Election Day."

JM Hanes


Why thank you sir, it warms the heart anew,
To meet approval when it comes from you!

The first 10 lines are straight from Shakespeare, and I couldn't believe how perfectly they described Obama (He does confess he feels himself distracted!). Working all the rest out in pentameter was a far bigger challenge than thinking it up, but it turned out to be a rather fascinating exercise.

Literary critics always claim that pentameter represents the native rhythm of speech, but I think they don't really know what they're talking about (so to speak). It might conceivably have been true in Elizabethan times, but I think fours and threes in various combinations, (counting pauses) come much more naturally. Once you make the stresses regular though, it would be impossible to sit though a whole play's worth of similarly metered speech in verse. Individual poems only get really interesting when the writer makes the words work against the sing song quality that 4/3 rhythms tend to produce. I think pentameter similarly works against the familiar; it's subtly unexpected, and therefore starts out more interesting in and of itself.

4/3 rhythms are the basic building blocks of music too. where syncopation is the spice for repetition, and melodies that depart from normal expectations are the ones that grab you. Almost anyone could hum a tune without even thinking about the notes or phrases, or about how a song begins or ends. It will also be completely unmemorable till you deliberately choose a counterintuitive note or two and see where that takes you instead.

In the same vein, that's where the English foot is superior to metrics in design, if not in engineering. The thirds and quarters that are so basic to architectural design and are so visually satisfying, are unfortunately also a bitch in meters and centimeters. They are too large and too small respectively for utility, from the get go. Then you get mired in decimals just to lay out a simple triptych that's childsplay when you work with feet and inches. You can visually divide anything into decent thirds and quarters which please the eye, without even resorting to a ruler. Combining them is not much harder. Working up or down in 2's. 3's and 4's is simple, even in combination, as is getting 2/3's of 12, or adding together in 7's and 8's. Placing studs at 16' or at 32" is also much easier to do by eye than trying to suss out decimals and meters, where virtually everything is fractional.

Oddly enough, architectural drawings are typical done in feet/inches (scaling up or down is really simple), while landscape architecture is laid out metrically -- emblematic, perhaps, of its roots in engineering? Setting building designs into landscape drawings is, like, my favorite hair pulling way to spend time.

Rick Ballard

"while landscape architecture is laid out metrically"


I think "using engineer scaling" is more accurate. Metric is understood to refer to meters and civil engineers use a decimal fraction of a foot rather than inches. It's a very minor point but I know you like accuracy. The guys who shove dirt around with bulldozers work to tenths and landscapers pick up where the bulldozer leaves off (mostly with another bulldozer).

JM Hanes



King Claudius: "He's loved of the distracted multitude, Who like not in their judgment, but their eyes"

JM Hanes


"It's a very minor point but I know you like accuracy."

A most tactful correction. Actually, it's a pretty major point, and I would tend to count (so to speak) on your preference for accuracy more than mine -- thus it's no surprise that you're absolutely right. Engineering scale is 10ths, not metrics, per se.

Indeed, aside from the long haul between centimeters and meters, what I'm really arguing is the natural superiority of 12's over 10's in anything visual or rhythmic (which in my own experience includes architectural design and drawing). It occurs to me, that like the jump between cm/m, metrics (and engineering scale) beat 12 based systems all hollow when it comes to working with minute tolerances or huge numbers (and perhaps monumental structures), not to mention counting on one's fingers and toes, of course. Interesting to think that the difference between the arts and the sciences (or of late in these threads, between "liberals" and "engineers"!) might be expressed numerically.....

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