What about Professor Siegel’s finding that the stock market has produced an annual average inflation-adjusted return of close to 7 percent since 1802? In an interview, Professor Pastor emphasized that the last two centuries could easily have been less hospitable to the United States, most likely lowering the stock market’s returns. An investor couldn’t have known in advance that the United States would win two world wars, for example, or emerge victorious from the cold war. In any case, he said, there is no guarantee that the next two centuries will be as kind to the domestic equity market as the last two.
I am also a fan of a National Infrastructure Bank, an idea that was first proposed by the financiers Felix Rohatyn and Everett Ehrlich.
The bank would function something like a domestic World Bank, financing large-scale undertakings like subways, airports and harbor improvements. Presumably it would be able to funnel money into the more sustainable, forward-looking projects. It could also establish a review process similar to the one created by the government’s General Services Administration in the mid-1990s, which attracted some of the country’s best talents to design federal courthouses and office buildings. Lavishing similar attention on bridges, pump stations, trains, public housing and schools would not only be a significant step in rebuilding a sense of civic pride; it would also prove that our society values the public infrastructure that binds us together as much as it values, say, sheltering the rich.
“The marvel of Wikipedia — and cities — is that all the intercourse and spiritual stimulus don’t make living there impossible. Rather, they are exactly what makes living there possible.”—Wikipedia: Exploring Fact City (nyt)
Isn’t the “I need a private plane for security” stance self-reinforced by being a jackass that people want to beat up? (Sorry, never been a big Mulally fan after exposure through Boeing. Plus he’s my first tycoon CEO where I’ve happened to pick up his career moves. Most other CEOs are unknown to me, though I have a feeling I’ll age into knowing more.)
“The only real motivation that anyone at A.I.G.-F.P. now has is fear. Mr. Cuomo has threatened to “name and shame,” and his counterpart in Connecticut, Richard Blumenthal, has made similar threats — even though attorneys general are supposed to stand for due process, to conduct trials in courts and not the press.”—
If you had some advice for anyone in the corporate America today –man or woman – what would it be?
The most important choice you can make is the boss and coworkers you will be working with – not the company as a whole (especially if it is big). If they are civilized, competent, and supportive people, you will be happy. If they are not, you will not only suffer, you will also catch the nastiness, incompetence, and the rest from them.
“For committed free-thinkers, the limitations of reverence as a philosophical position appeared obvious. (“Piety,” once a virtue, tends to carry exclusively negative connotations among those who don’t like to be told what to do.) But, on balance, it created a productive anxiety for the arts. The supreme difficulty of doing justice to so much suffering and so much death before such a tough audience inspired more than one writer’s finest work; anxiety is what gave productions as reticent as W.G. Sebald’s The Emigrants and as scabrous as Mel Brooks’ The Producers their ethical charge. (Not, anxiety compels me to add, that it was any consolation.)”—Everybody’s Holocaust: Jonathan Littell’s Fictional Nazi and Postmodernity’s Double Bind - The Millions via Jaime.
“If Geithner’s taxpayer subsidized toxic public/private plan goes forward, I think it would be fair if the federal government allow non-institutional investors to participate via a no-fee investment vehicle. I think if Americans had the option of investing in this program (without having to pay the egregious fees to the investment advisors/PE shops), it would be much easier to swallow since they would at least get the same deal the sharks are getting.”—Let the People In « The Baseline Scenario A very interesting reader suggestion. I’d buy into an ETF with that structure. Long-term profits could ease the pain that will come through my taxes, right?
“The prevailing educational method is consistent at all levels. It is to approach truth by white lies: to start with over-simplifications and, over time, to gradually amend and refine them. This is not inherently bad. Better that children be lied to and told that the earth is round like a ball, than be allowed to assume it flat until they can understand an oblate spheroid. But, to smooth the way, we have universalized this method and consigned all the final disabusals to specialists. Thus even the best-educated are left with beliefs that are not quite true; knowledge that is not quite accurate; ideas that are not quite clear.”—The Ruricolist: Old textbooks
“Using a HARDI (High-Angular Resolution Diffusion Imaging) scanner to visualize brain myelin composition, a group of researchers from UCLA confirmed what everyone has already known. Your coworkers are doofuses because they were born to dumb parents.”—HARDI Scanner Says Intelligence Is Inherited (Medgadget)
For five months, BailoutSleuth has been waiting for the Treasury Department to provide a complete, unredacted copy of its services agreement with Bank of New York Mellon, the master custodian for the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program.
We finally located one, on a web site that the Treasury Department set up to post copies of its investment contracts with banks, its loan deals with auto makers and other TARP-related documents.
Although the link to the Bank of New York Mellon contract didn’t work, we deleted some extraneous elements from the web address and were able to access the document.
The contract reveals information that was blacked out in an earlier version that the Treasury Department made public when it hired the company in October. That version obscured all details of Bank of New York Mellon’s compensation, marking an inauspicious start to the Treasury Department’s pledge of transparency.
Notable for content, reporting, tenaciousness and geek cred reengineering URLs.
Call me a hapless romantic, but I like using my investments to support lost causes. I have positions in both Pax World Women’s Equity Fund, Portfolio 21 and I might pick up something in these new efforts.
Given how much information Google put out to employees about the option exchange program and given how much Google stock has fallen — it was over $700 at the end of December 2007 — the only real question is why 7.3% of those eligible didn’t exchange their options.
“So it looks like it is going to be an L – not a V or a U. I mean an L-shaped recession, one that starts with a steep decline, followed by very low growth for many years. In a V-type recession, the recovery is instant. In a U-type, it comes eventually. My guess is that we are currently somewhere in the middle of the vertical bit of the L, but it is the horizontal bit that is the scariest. History never repeats itself exactly, but we know from economic history that financial crises are surprisingly similar.”—FT.com: An L of a recession – reform is the way out Why letters? Have we really associated the hockey-stick shape so strongly with generic business progress that its shape can’t be meaningful reversed? That seems a lot more appropriate than the flat, bottom part of an L, even when you’re talking about glacial rates of progress.
Once you see how flexible dream interpretation can be, you can appreciate why it has always been such a popular tool for decision-making. Relying on your dreams for guidance is like the political ritual of appointing an “independent blue-ribbon panel” to resolve an issue. You can duck any personal responsibility for action while pretending to rely on an impartial process, even though you’ve stacked the panel with your own friends and will ignore any advice that conflicts with your desires. Charity work, no; margaritas, sí.
How does nanostitching work? The polymer glue between two carbon-fiber layers is heated, becoming more liquid-like. Billions of nanotubes positioned perpendicular to each carbon-fiber layer are then sucked up into the glue on both sides of each layer. Because the nanotubes are 1000 times smaller than the carbon fibers, they don’t detrimentally affect the much larger carbon fibers, but instead fill the spaces around them, stitching the layers together.
“It’s sad to know that new content will no longer sprout from this fountain but nice to know that it’ll continue as a resource to others that stumble across it.”—Digital Web Magazine I love Snook’s mixed metaphor.