Showing posts with label Miscellaneous assholery The Tinkerbelle Economy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Miscellaneous assholery The Tinkerbelle Economy. Show all posts

Feb 13, 2014

The gun salesman of the decade is getting tired

Things are rough at the Cabela's gun counter. About everyone who wanted a Glokkenpopper 'cuz he was afraid of Obama  has bought one, and the gun clerks are finding time to wander over to chat up the pretty girls hustling overpriced Chinese shirts with Cabelas's patches on them.

I doubt you need to disturb your long-term Cabela's (or Ruger or S/W)  position. About the time HIllary starts looking like a shoo-in, the market will recover.

Besides, Cabela's makes most of its money from those Chinese shirts. New Jersey file clerks like to wear them to TGIF's. Impresses the girls there, they tell me.

Sep 16, 2013

It's a matter of soil balance

His Ineptness goes to the Rose Garden today. The purpose? To tell us all what a wonderful president he really is.  The occasion is the fifth anniversary of the fall of  Lehman Brothers, a one-time leader in organized crime. He will report that his wisdom saved the nation and the world from economic collapse, that he has ushered us to the portal of peace and prosperity. He. Himself.

This speech is good news for the nation to the extent that the National Park Service can cancel it's rose fertilizer orders for several months.

Jul 31, 2012

Go Ahead, Fed, Make My Day

The Bernanke Cloven meets today.  I'll bet Ben doesn't know he is serving me, personally. He will continue the unacknowledged QE3 and further promise to keep interest rates low -- effectively zero -- for at least three more years. The two  moves are different approaches to the same scam, creating money out of thin air and pretending it is wealth.

And that helps me make a decision on spending some savings on a new capital asset. Why?  Because up until now I've always had to calculate interest on money I think I want to spend -- interest paid or interest earned.

Let's assume my little adventure costs $10,000, just to ease the arithmetic.  The money would come from a "risk-free" account paying one-tenth of 1 per cent or $10 per year or 83 and one-third cents per month. Poor as I am, I can safely ignore that.

Over my adult years, interest available to Joe Sixpack ranged from about 4 per cent up to an amazing 10-or-15 per cent  as the Carter debacle wound down. About ten years ago, $10,000 commanded something like 5 per cent, sometimes 6, depending on how carefully you shopped around for your CDs and other "safe" investments. That meant that the first cost of spending $10,000 was the $500 or  $600 interest you lost. Call it $50 a month. Or call it a box of high-grade .45 ACP every week.

In  any case, call it significant because, even at that late date in our economic history , Americans retained some faith that their government was attempting to manage our currency  in a grown-up manner.

Up until approximately that point, we generally agreed that money was supposed to be worth something. We operated as though there should be some rational correspondence between the value of the dollar you hold today and the same dollar in your pocket one year from today. Misadventures such as Jimmy Carter  and the savings-and-loan fiasco were viewed as aberrations. If that meant things like letting the seventh-largest bank in the country go bust, so be it.

The surest evidence that your savings represented actual wealth was the fact that people would pay for the use of it.

No more. The United States dollar is a deathbed case as a store of value. An apt comparison is a duplex in the heart of defeated Detroit. Neither commands a dime for its use, and a fresh coat of paint won't change that.


So, if everything else seems right, I'll spend because it seems stupendously foolish not to.

Meanwhile I'll listen raptly to the Great Debate as we choose our leaders for 2013 and beyond. The suspense is mortal. Was His Ineptness born feloniously in Kenya or merely ineptly in Hawaii? Did Mitt insult both the Brits and the Palestinians?  Should we ban high-capacity  magazines or gay marriage?

Apr 12, 2012

Adventures in consumer land

1. The ammunition shortage has boosted the price of Federal 550 packs  of .22LR by a buck, to $19.97. Similarly cheap-skate, hundred-round, 12-gauge value packs are still $22.97, however. My Armageddon stash was already at the goal, but I bought a little of each on general principles.

2. Also at WalMart I discovered that Velcro is available in "MilSpec" camo. (Of course I didn't, and it is unkind of you to even ask.)

3. At the Government Motors dealership, a computerized spare key for the More Dependable Truck set me back a litlte over thirty dollars. I inquired as to the procedure for disabling the furshlugginner anti-theft system and was laughed at. To which I replied that it is a theft enabling system for GM dealers.

4. Appropos both vendors, the Velcro from WalMart was necessary because  of a Government Motors design error. The MDT has a bench seat with a flip down console with a generous tray for holding junk. The tray has no cover, meaning when you flip it up all the crap falls generously to the floor behind the seat.  (Good thinking, Mr. President.) The libertarian solution is an old clip board, painted to match the stylish black of the factory plastic, hinged with black Gorilla tape, held closed with Velcro dots.

It's nice to be back home.

Dec 15, 2011

Why we're broke

I've been thinking about Newt Gingrich lately.  Maybe an undigested bit of beef?

Thinking about Newt, the Ghost of  Christmas Future, reminds me of George Washington Plunkett, a real man who helped run Tammany Hall, famous for defending "honest" political graft and for summarizing how he got rich ward-heeling in New York City:

"I seen my opportunities and I took 'em."

He boasted that he never shook down widows and orphans.

"Just let me explain by examples. My party’s in power in the city, and it’s goin' to undertake a lot of public improvements. Well, I’m tipped off, say, that they’re going to lay out a new park at a certain place.

"I see my opportunity and I take it. I go to that place and I buy up all the land I can in the neighborhood. Then the board of this or that makes its plan public, and there is a rush to get my land, which nobody cared particular for before.

"Ain’t it perfectly honest to charge a good price and make a profit on my investment and foresight? Of course, it is. Well, that’s honest graft. Or supposin‘ it’s a new bridge they’re goin’ to build. I get tipped off and I buy as much property as I can that has to be taken for approaches. I sell at my own price later on and drop some more money in the bank."

That's at least candid, but it's remarkably crude by modern standards. Today Mr. Plunkett would leave his powerful political office and collect a few million or so giving strategic advice to the public titters of Freddy Mac and Fannie Mae.  And he could claim he wasn't lobbying.

If that don't beat the Dickens...