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Posts posted by gags

  1. The Muslim Student Association is hosting its "annual Hitler Youth Week" at UCSD and this pig invites people to attend their events. Apparently allowing genocidal maniacs to form groups like the MSA and meet on campus is what passes for intellectual freedom at America's colleges today. What a disgrace. I agree with Diana, if she's not a US citizen, she should be kicked out of the country immediately. If she is a citizen, she should be watched by the FBI. As far as her professor (as quoted by Jake) is concerned, she should get the boot from the University.

  2. Actually I think the tuition increases are more closely related to decreased subsidy by state legislatures, expansion of the "mission" of universities (so-called outreach), and (drum roll) increases in institutional aid to students, covered by tuition.

    I don't doubt that's the case in the last couple of years. However, I was thinking more along the lines of back when subsidies given directly to the universities and indirectly through student loans, were increasing. If everyone can get funding for college, you have more money chasing the same amount of goods and that's a sure fire recipe for inflation.

  3. Oh my, what a shock! Now it looks as though Goldman may just write a check to put the whole thing behind them:

    LONDON (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs may soon settle its fraud case with the U.S. regulator, the New York Post reported on Thursday, opting to end a legal fight rather than endure a repeat of the public flogging it received this week.

    The Post report, citing sources familiar with the matter, said Wall Street's top investment bank was mulling closing the fraud case with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to limit damage to its reputation.

    "It's almost a certainty that there will be a settlement," the paper quoted a source as saying.


    Not to be a tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorist, but after Blankfein said that he supported the Wall Street "reform" package, this whole thing started to stink. Does anyone else get the impression we're being manipulated? :rolleyes:

  4. Here's a more detailed article on the subject.

    Thanks, the Edmond Sun piece is great. The Washington Times from Friday has a good editorial on the subject:

    Previously unreleased documents supplied to The Washington Times reveal that GM specifically used funds it received from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to pay off the government loan. According to Neil Barofsky, the special inspector general for TARP, $4.7 billion of $6.7 billion - 70 percent - of what GM paid back came from TARP money the company received. "The one thing a lot of people overlook with this is where they got the money to pay the loan," Mr. Barofsky told Fox News' Neil Cavuto on Wednesday. "It isn't from earnings." The numbers are based on a quarterly report Mr. Barofsky's office provided to Congress last week.


  5. I think we can see how this is going to come about. Here are Obama's comments from an inteview he did on CNBC this week:

    In the CNBC interview, Obama said he was waiting for recommendations from a bipartisan fiscal advisory commission on ways to tackle the deficit and other problems.

    When asked if he could see a potential VAT in this nation, the president said: "I know that there's been a lot of talk around town lately about the value-added tax. That is something that has worked for some countries. It's something that would be novel for the United States."

    "And before, you know, I start saying 'this makes sense or that makes sense,' I want to get a better picture of what our options are," Obama said.


    Obviously the "bipartisan fiscal advisory commission" is going to recommend the imposition of a VAT. This will give Obama the political cover he needs.

  6. The right of free speech requires defense against actual threats. If the government doesn't protect free speech, then there is no free speech -- free from the initiation of the use of force in retaliation for speech. Neither newspapers nor individuals possess their own armies or police forces to defend against such threats. That's the purpose of a proper government.

    Yes, of course that's a proper function of government. However, I would like to see newspapers and TV stations universally stand up and declare that they won't be intimidated by the Islamist knuckle-draggers. The New York Times, Washington Post and USA Today should have put the Danish cartoons on their front pages. CBS, ABC and NBC should broadcast the uncensored South Park episode in prime time. Unfortunately, they don't have the balls to do it. This is the really ugly side of political correctness.

  7. The fault belongs with our (US) government, not with Comedy Central or with the two creators of the show, for not actually standing up to Islamofascism in the protection of individual rights. Neither Comedy Central nor the creators refuse to risk offending Muslims just because of a few empty threats. The threats are not empty. Without confidence that you can protect yourself against such threats, especially without confidence that your government will protect you, it's too much to expect individuals to risk their own lives. Would you?

    Other parties are also at fault here. If every newspaper in America had published the Danish cartoons, what would the Islamists have done? Could they have blown up every newspaper office in the country? Along the same lines, Comedy Central should make the South Park episode available to every TV station and ask that they broadcast it.... and they should do so. The Islamists can't kill us all.

  8. When I see news stories like this:

    Goldman Sachs is launching an aggressive response to its political and legal challenges with an unlikely ally at its side — President Barack Obama’s former White House counsel, Gregory Craig.


    Now that Goldman is being advised by a man who has access to the highest levels of the Obama administration, it makes me wonder if this isn't really just a sham prosecution. I won't be surprised if the case ends in a "slap on the wrist" fine for Goldman and no damage to anyone of any importance. This appears to be more of a ploy to create a political atmosphere ripe for Obama's version of financial "reform", than a legitimate case of fraud.

  9. Here's an interesting article re: governments cracking down on overseas accounts that used to be hidden from domestic taxing authorities. One rotten bastard gave them the ammunition that they needed:

    It was Heinrich Kieber, a disgruntled computer technician in Liechtenstein, who struck perhaps the biggest blow against the fabled secrecy of offshore banks when he sold a CD containing information on thousands of account holders to the German government, which then passed it on to tax authorities around the world.

    For cash-strapped governments the data amounted to a treasure trove. For the first time, in many cases, it provided them with the ammunition they needed to deal with the problem of tax-haven banks....


  10. Maxine Waters holds quite a few Marxist views and like most leftist politicians, she tries to conceal them.

    This reminds me of John Dingell's (D-MI) comments about the healthcare bill:

    “Let me remind you: This has been going on for years; we are bringing it to a halt. The harsh fact of the matter is when you are going to pass legislation that will cover 300 [million] American people in different ways it takes a long time to do the necessary administrative steps that have to be taken to put the legislation together to control the people. You know, the Republicans have spent a lot of time not participating, not helping, carping and delaying. But at the same time they have contributed nothing to this and made no offers whatsoever as to what it is they want or what they stand for.”


    Or the comments on the healthcare legislation made by Max Baucus (D-MT):

    "Too often, much of late, the last couple three years, the mal-distribution of income in America is gone up way too much, the wealthy are getting way, way too wealthy and the middle income class is left behind," he said. "Wages have not kept up with increased income of the highest income in America. This legislation will have the effect of addressing that mal-distribution of income in America."


    They can only hide it for so long and then they slip. Unfortunately, the American people either aren't listening or they agree with their view of the world.

  11. It is pretty scary to read and listen stuff about that project. It is said, that it is possible to destroy any entity (they talk about rockets and submarines, but I guess it counts for human beings as well), probably even to start earthquakes.

    Oh come on man, don't you know that scantilly clad, loose women cause earthquakes?

    A senior Iranian cleric says women who wear revealing clothing and behave promiscuously are to blame for earthquakes...."Many women who do not dress modestly ... lead young men astray, corrupt their chastity and spread adultery in society, which increases earthquakes," Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi was quoted as saying by Iranian media.


  12. Funny, but isn't that the same goal of the US govt?

    Perhaps. I'm not sure what their goal is at this point. My first impression is that they're using these fraud charges to create a fall-guy so that they can gain greater control over the entire financial sector. You know.....never let a good crisis go to waste.

  13. Former Fed Chairman and Obama advisor Paul Volker recently suggested that both a VAT and an energy tax should be on the table to help pay for the government's massive overspending. The ruling class continues to lay the foundation for this tax, while also claiming that a VAT won't be enacted.

    Here are a couple of good WSJ pieces on the VAT that the politicians are planning to shove down our throats:



  14. You can read the actual Goldman offering here:


    Clearly these were investments designed for and sold to highly sophisticated fixed income investors. The CDOs in the investment were Baa2 rated by Moodys, which is near the bottom of their ratings for investment grade debt.

    This case could drag on for many months and even more potentially damaging is the fact that the Europeans are getting ready to jump on the bandwagon:


    The Euros would like nothing more than to cripple Goldman and other US investment banks so that the business gets done overseas rather than in NY.

  15. This is an interesting thread. My grandfather was a tailor who owned a men's clothing store and my father took over the store from him and ran it for about 25 years. I worked as a salesman in the store while in high school and college, so I grew up around nice men's clothing and I know something about quality clothing.... which seems to be increasingly scarce.

    I agree with Eiuol's contention that clothing is at least one measure of self-esteem. As CastleBravo stated, I too would prefer to over-dress for an occasion than to under-dress for it. In fact, even though our office went to a casual look (shirts and pants for men, no suits or ties required) several years ago, I continue to wear suits, sport coats and ties on a regular basis. I'm just not a fan of the "Dockers" and a golf shirt look while at work. It seems unprofessional to me and when I owned my firm, I would always wear a suit to work, even when I wasn't meeting with clients. As far as I'm concerned, it meant I was serious and I was there to work and get things accomplished. There's no better builder of self-esteem than personal achievement and accomplishment.

    In the same light, spot judgments are made upon first encounter impressions, whether that impression is towards character, organization, or hygiene. That should be reason enough to pay attention to personal appearance and clothing.
    This is a great point. In business, you frequently meet new people and have very little time to make a good impression on them. Why risk making a bad impression by under-dressing or worse yet, dressing like a slob?
  16. This is a terrible argument against free markets because the regulations caused these problems in the first place. The truth of the matter is, if Coal mining companies were left to their own devices, they would do strip mining, not tunnel mining.

    This is interesting. I don't know anything about mining, but I just assumed that most coal deposits were deep under the ground and strip mining wasn't an option. Do you happen to know what percentage of the usable coal is near the surface versus the amount that is too deep to strip mine?

    In any event, mining is a dangerous business and those who work in the industry make conscious decisions to accept a certain level of risk when they go to work every day. Nevertheless, negligence is a valid legal concept and allowing explosive gases to build up in a mine certainly seems to fit the legal definition of that term.

  17. But, in the case of coal mining...

    What would be the proper oist position?

    What if it's cheaper for the company to pay for the eventual deaths than to pay for the safety measures?

    People buying energy, can choose one company over another?

    It was apparently cheaper for the company to pay the fines dictated by the regulators than to pay for the safety measures, so regulation failed miserably here.

    It seems to me that criminal negligence should come into play in these sorts of situations. Clearly company management was aware (or should have been aware) that not properly ventilating explosive gas from a mine shaft could lead to an incident like the one that just happened. In this case, I believe that the company should be sued in a civil action and that the government should look at the potential criminal prosecution of management. Whether criminal prosecution is ultimately warranted would depend on the facts, which I am aware of only superficially. Also, I don't know anything about the legal requirements for such a prosecution under our current system, but if they don't exist, then perhaps they should be written into the law.

  18. CNN is doing a good job of running "this is all the fault of Reganite free-market deregulation!" pieces all day on the mine explosion ordeal. I've already encountered at least two co workers who seem convinced that this is some sort of argument against capitalism. Anyone else experiencing this?

    Coal mining is a heavily regulated industry, yet accidents still seem to happen. Why doesn't anyone ever say that such accidents debunk the myth of effective government regulation? Of course, regulation can never be ineffective because if it doesn't work, there simply isn't enough regulation. :huh:

  19. It is sad that my first thought after reading that article was exactly this. It is so entrenched an anti-individuality that I question the point in pursuing my interests here. It is slowly becoming a place where I simply can't.

    The trends are certainly frightening. However, the obvious question becomes where does one go that's better? I continue to believe that this country is worth fighting for and I think it can be turned around. Unfortunately I can also see that we are fast approaching the point of no return.

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