Debate 3 Thread

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Oct 15, 2008 9:58 pm

I think McCain and Obama actually hate each other...

Oct 15, 2008 11:30 pm

The winner o' da debate....Joe da plummer you know das right!

Oct 15, 2008 11:39 pm

I'm burnt out on Politics.  I'll cast my vote and if my guy doesn't win I'll at least try to enjoy the transition to socialism.  What's really going to be a kick in the head is if I actually make it in this business.  I will have been poor while capitalism was alive and well, and I'll get successful just in time for the government to share my wealth.

Oct 16, 2008 9:42 am

If we're all being taken care of by government why would anybody need a financial advisor?

Oct 16, 2008 10:24 am

Canadian Perspective ....we voted in a Minority Conservative Government and from all appearances it appears the U.S. will be lead by Obama. Making that assumption.....he has already set the table for the delaying of some of his promises ( a quote to the effect of my plans may be delayed by six months ). You think so do you??? This situation WILL NOT be sorted out in six months. So here is the situation he and the Democrats face. Slowing down of the economy , job losses , all levels of government in deficets , demands from Unions ( he promised them ) , further financial problems with not only Financial Institutions but from the Manufacturing Sectors ( need money...HELP ). This is but a few of the challenges that are facing the new President.

Raising taxes , new social spending and all of the other " goodies " promised and my question is to Obama and the Democrats ...Where are you going to find the money for all these promises and programs? Print more? Borrow More? Do you think that maybe this is what may have been part of the problem? Not to simply question Obama , if McCain was to win he also is faced with the same series of problems.
Good Luck .......be prepared for many people to be angry and waiting to vote out the Party and President in power. One Term President if I was a gambler.
Oct 16, 2008 11:28 am

Norsk, I was thinking about that last night while viewing the debate. Obama wins, probable gridlock in the congress, same for McCain.

 
One term president, ala Carter? I am hearing conflicting reports about the status of inflation right now, this could be an interesting comparison. After Carter, Reagan. Four years of rejuvination could go by pretty quick. I guess the verdict on Iraq is still out, that may have been (financially) Bush's biggest blunder, but I'm not privvy to his national security perspective.
 
I'm perfectly confident that the Chinese will start buying up Wal-Mart shares, and so on, the market itself and the economic fundamentals will be fine, after a correction.
 
Angry union members, including teachers, and such? North America is just becoming more like the rest of the (developing) world ( India, China, Brazil,) there are haves and have-nots, and the disparity in North America is growing. It's either this course, or we try to become more like Denmark and Sweden - an unlikely scenario, I believe, due to the size and diversity of our population and economy.
 
Best to focus on what we ourselves can control (educate ourselves and our families, exercise, work hard, stay positive), and wait for ambitious achievers to overwhelm the whiners (starting in a few years?).
Oct 16, 2008 11:31 am

"If we're all being taken care of by government why would anybody need a financial advisor?"

 

Do you have, like a personal history of being abused, or something? Go somewhere else to get your needs met, please, like professional counseling.
Oct 16, 2008 11:32 am

Let me see if I have this right.  A speaker Pelosi coupled with a Senate Leader Reid and a President Obama will mean political gridlock?

Oct 16, 2008 11:33 am

"

Just remember this simple equation:
 
Indy + S-Corp = your friend "
 
Nice economic response to a political problem. Are you worried about getting audited - I guess you're avoiding SS taxes on what, 1/3 of your net?
Oct 16, 2008 11:43 am

Here's a good piece that someone sent me from IBD.  During a stint as a bank auditor, I personally witnessed the teeth put into CRA during the mid-90's and wondered when some of those questionable loans would come back to bite us.  I hated what I had to enforce and I didn't last long in auditing.  I also remembered thinking that Carter was a pussy when we had hostages held by a group of students and we couldn't go in and extract them.

 
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Wednesday, September 10, 2008 4:20 PM PT 
  
 Jimmy Carter became our 39th president at the young age of 52.  He was a one-term governor from Plains, GA, where he managed the family peanut farm and taught Sunday school.  He was also a graduate of the Naval Academy and served seven years in the Navy, leaving as a lieutenant.

He came to power in the aftermath of the Vietnam War and the resignation of President Nixon.  The public wanted change and someone new, and Carter was an ambitious, hands-on politician who promised better days.  As good as his intentions were, however, the things he tried were not successful.  In fact, he created far more serious problems than he ever solved.

The centerpiece of Carter's foreign policy was human rights, and he did achieve one noble success peace treaty between Egypt's Anwar Sadat and Israel's Menachem Begin. Unfortunately, that later led to Sadat's assassination at the hands of Muslim radicals. Many people felt Carter was a good man who worked hard and meant well.  But he was naive and incompetent in handling the enormous burdens and complex challenges of being president.  He wrongly believed Americans had an 'inordinate fear of communism,' so he lifted travel bans to Cuba, North Vietnam and Cambodia and pardoned draft evaders.  He also stopped B-1 bomber production and gave away our strategically located Panama Canal.

His most damaging miscalculation was the withdrawal of U.S. support for the Shah of Iran, a strong and longtime military ally.  Carter objected to the Shah's alleged mistreatment of imprisoned Soviet spies who were working to overthrow Iran's government.  He thought the exiled Ayatollah Khomeini, being a religious man, would make a fairer leader.  Having lost U.S. support, the Shah was overthrown, the Ayatollah returned, Iran was declared an Islamic nation and Palestinian hit men were hired to eliminate opposition.

The Ayatollah then introduced the idea of suicide bombers to the Palestine Liberation Organization, paying $35,000 to PLO families whose young people were brainwashed to kill as many Israelis as possible by blowing themselves up in crowded shopping areas.  Next, the Ayatollah used Iran's oil wealth to create, train and finance a new terrorist organization, Hezbollah, which later would attack Israel in 2006.

In November 1979, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other Iranians stormed the U.S. embassy in Tehran and took 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. Not until six months into the ordeal did Carter attempt a rescue.  But the mission, using just six Navy helicopters, was poorly executed. Three of the copters were disabled or lost in sandstorms.  (Pilots weren't allowed to meet with weather forecasters because someone in authority worried about security.)  Five airmen and three Marines lost their lives.

So, due to overconfidence, inexperience and poor judgment, Carter undermined and lost a strong ally, Iran, that today aggressively threatens the U.S., Israel and the rest of the world with nuclear weapons.  But that's not all.  After Carter met for the first time with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev, the USSR promptly invaded Afghanistan. Carter, ever the naive appeaser, was shocked.  'I can't believe the Russians lied to me,' he said.

The invasion attracted a 23-year-old Saudi named Osama bin Laden to Afghanistan to recruit Muslim fighters and raise money for an anti-Soviet jihad.  Part of that group eventually became al-Qaida, a terrorist organization that would declare war on America several times between 1996 and 1998 before attacking us on 9/11, killing more Americans than the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.  On Carter's watch, the Soviet Union went on an unrestrained rampage in which it took over not only Afghanistan, but also Ethiopia, South Yemen, Angola, Cambodia, Mozambique, Grenada and Nicaragua.  In spite of this, Carter's last defense budget proposed spending 45% below pre-Vietnam levels for fighter aircraft, 75% for ships, 83% for attack submarines and 90% for helicopters. 
 
Years later, as a civilian, Carter negotiated a peace agreement with North Korea to keep that communist country from developing nuclear weapons.  He also convinced President Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to go along with it.  But the signed piece of paper proved worthless.  The North Koreans deceived Carter and instead used our money, incentives and technical equipment to build nuclear weapons and pose the threat we face today.  Thus did Carter unwittingly become our Neville Chamberlain, creating with his well-intended but inept, unrealistic and gullible actions the very conditions that led to the three most dangerous security threats we face today:  Iran, al-Qaeda and North Korea.
 
On the domestic side, Carter gave us inflation of 15%, the highest in 34 years; interest rates of 21%, the highest in 115 years; and a severe energy crisis with lines around the block at gas stations nationwide.  In 1977, Carter, along with a Democrat Congress, created a worthy project with noble intentions the Community Reinvestment Act. Over strong industry objections, it mandated that all banks meet the credit needs of their entire communities.

In 1995, President Clinton imposed even stronger regulations and performance tests that coerced banks to substantially increase loans to low-income, poverty-area borrowers or face fines or possible restrictions on expansion.  These revisions allowed for secularization of CRA loans containing sub prime mortgages.  By 1997, good loans were bundled with poor ones and sold as prime packages to institutions here and abroad.  That shifted risk from the loan originators, freeing banks to begin pyramiding and make more of these profitable sub prime products.

Under two young, well-intended presidents, therefore, big-government plans and mandates played a significant role in the current sub prime mortgage mess and its catastrophic consequences for the U.S. and international economies.  Hardest-hit by the mortgage foreclosures have been the citizens that Democrats always claim to help most inner-city residents who fell victim to low or no down payment schemes, unexpected adjustable rates, deceptive loan applications and commission-hungry salespeople.  Now we're having to bail out at huge cost Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the very agencies that were supposed to stabilize the system.  In time, this should improve the situation.  But the party of Carter and Clinton that midwife our mortgage mess now wants to be trusted to take over and have the government run our entire system of health care!

And everyone is blaming Bush for our current problems.
Oct 16, 2008 11:50 am

Nail on the head, Indyone.

Oct 16, 2008 11:54 am

During a stint as a bank auditor, I personally witnessed the teeth put into CRA during the mid-90's and wondered when some of those questionable loans would come back to bite us.  I hated what I had to enforce and I didn't last long in auditing


 
 
I got my securities license in 1990 and had been a commercial lending officer for some years at a regional bank.  They wanted us commercial lenders to try to also grab up the investment business from our book of business. 
 
My bonuses and advancement in the system was based on the quality of my loan portfolio and I made good loans that benefited the lender and the borrower.  When I was forced to make some CRA loans to people who were not credit worthy and who had bad business plans with little to no experience running a business.....I quit.  The loans went bad just as I knew they would and my record as a lender was compromised.  The bank ended up wearing the commercial property around it's neck for 6 years and ultimately sold the property at pennies on the dollar just to get it out of their OREO books.   End of story was that I refused to make bad loans and went out on my own as an investment advisor and never regretted the decision.

CRA and the removal of Glass-Stegall both Democrat policies and pet projects of the Dems are what has brought us to this economic chaos.
 
Oct 16, 2008 11:58 am

My kid brother is a retired bank president--he left with something like 20 million.  But that's irrelevant to this.

 
He was on a bank's executive committee when they were forced to come to grips with the "demands" of local organizers who wanted the bank to make 15% of its loans to garbage borrowers.
 
Among the things the bank "enjoyed" were having their lobbies overrun with activists who would get in the teller lines to exchange thousands of pennies for nickels.  They'd stand there and count out the pennies from buckets that they were carrying.
 
At other times they'd sit down with platform officers and discuss loans, for hours, while the bank's legitimate customers were kept waiting.
 
The bank's ATMs were vandalized by activists who inserted hotel key cards coated with super glue into the slot for debit cards.
 
The activists made it clear that things like that would only stop if the bank assured the organization that they would make the loans.
 
After much internal debate it was decided that writing off "X" percentage as bad debt expense was favorable to not being able to do business at all.
 
That was the local activists.  There was also the demands being made by the Clinton administration.
 
At that level the penalties for not going along to get along were inceased, and much more stingent, regulatory audits, denials of requests to expand and threats of losing the necessary charters altogether.
 
This issue sits squarely at the feet of the Democrat party and their desire to use the bankiing industry for social engineering.
Oct 16, 2008 12:03 pm
indyone:

And everyone is blaming Bush for our current problems.

 
The guy who was so stunned that he continued to read a goat story to small children after he was told terrorists flew planes into buildings?
 
Nah.
Oct 16, 2008 12:07 pm

What President Bush was told was, "We believe the country has been attacked.  We're getting the facts and will be back to get you when we have more details."

 
It would have been out of line for him to jump up and rush out of that room at that moment.
Oct 16, 2008 12:07 pm

Walking ..... the Iraq situation and the costs I would think may have been a financial blackhole. Afghanastan we have been told will cost Canadians 18 Billion until end of mission in 2011. Not sure I buy that any of us will be out of there by 2011.

A theory or observation we in the West in terms of Financial Assistance to the world since 1945 have been very generous and I will absolutely acknowledge the U.S. A. has been a leader in foreign aid. Fast forward to 2008 , the question has to be asked can we in the West be still expected to continue to contribute at these levels? Canada was sending one ( 1 ) million dollars a week to China in 2007 as they were considered a developing nation?
We have given financial assistance and sent our maunufacturing and technology to these nations and we now have what to show for this? Again I just ask the question. Natural disasters , a question the nations that have benefited from Oil Prices .....how much did they contribute?
I think that the politicans and the public have to really start to understand that to continue to help the world we need to evaluate our own growth and our own economies. If we can succeed than we have the ability to assist if we fail the world will not benefit from a strong Western economic power and their positions will slip even more.
Oct 16, 2008 1:10 pm

You bring up some great points and historical perspective. So here is my nutshell soapbox rant.

 
It is truly one world now, in almost every way. We breath the same air. One rogue nuclear bomb blast anywhere, and every dairy farm in the world will shut down -- for how long?
 
Iraq must be evaluated from a longer historical time perspective. It's tragic that we did not, or could not, "negotiate" - the whole political scenario, starting with Wall Street being blown up, U. S. bases being moved from S. A. to Iraq, the French and Russians selling weapons behind our back, thus negating the power of negotiation, the loss of life, the opportunity cost of war, the opportunity cost of the U.S. military not learning what it has in Iraq so it can respond (to fearful conditions) in the future, and so on.
 
If I hear one more liberal - who drives a car that is powered by gas - make a cynical comment about oil, or make a long and careful argument about how 9/11 and Iraq are not connected - I'm going to retreat to the utopia of Atlas Shrugged and let them work it out themselves.
 
For example, I heard no comment in the debate last night about how the "SUV" conspiracy by Detroit was foisted upon us by unions AND shareholders, to extract maximum profits. Fine, let the market (price of oil) now dictate what is produced. We don't need whiners, or social policy to set a course for energy independence. Okay, a little social policy is good. Witness, ethanol subsidies, bad.
 
Therefore, the political stability of China is linked to China aquiring our technology, and us becoming interdependent and the continued economic practice of comparative advantage. This is in our self interest, and it also happens to be humane, the idea of lifting all boats. Unfortunately, because we are human, some boats will sink, or linger in the cesspools.
 
So you're right, we've done our job, and now we need to tighten our belts. This will be painful for a couple of years, but we'll get stronger. Having lived in a socialist country myself for a period in conditions of near-poverty, I feel very strongly that Americans are naive especially with regard to some folks feeling that they entitled to anything (at all). You have personal effort, genetics, the grace of God, luck, skill - these things are real.
 
 
Oct 16, 2008 1:15 pm

You're too clever for me, bub.

Oct 16, 2008 1:35 pm

Walking .....several months ago I was watching a news show and the debate was about the cost of Iraq and Afghanastan. Just recalled it was a BBC World Program. The panelists were from Europe , UK and the U.S.

All the panelists agreed and no and I mean no disagreement on who was shouldering the costs for the above and a host of other situations in the world. In fact , the German and French reporters stated why would we ( their respective nations ) pay for the various missions when the U.S.A. was prepared to foot the bill. In addition , take the political heat and the anger......protect us but expect nothing from us. In Canada , the Dutch Government were the first nation that were to agree to extend the mission in Afghanastan and were concerned about if Canada would not renew their mission. We did agree to extend the mission and our politicians were under pressure to withdraw. The Conservatives said we are in for the long haul and the despite our military losses we are there under UN mandate. Our German and French " allies " have been sent to non-combatant zones ie. food prep , map reading or whatever. The Americans , British , Canadian and Dutch forces are ALL sent to the battle zones. So we pay and we get what??
Oct 16, 2008 2:00 pm

Exactly.

 



Let's talk about the collective ignorance of North Americans, since we are virtually one economy.
 
The problem is not that the French won't pay, rather, that Americans are currently conflicted about our role in the world.
 
At least paying for the military gives us control. My impression is that a lot of European countries maintain substantial Muslim populations, there is a social stability question.
 
North America is a continent of many blessings. With regard to world economic interdependence, we are blessed with (immigrant) southern neighbors who are basically happy, hard working, god and family based people.
 
We have everything we need, and the means to help maintain an order that is based on good, and not evil, which is real.
 
We're also naive, in certain ways, about how to relate to the rest of the world. Balance that against the idealism of folks who have already forgotten the "reason" for the bombing of Wall Street.