Hear I Go Google!

Friday, December 12, 2008

S.O.S. America : Big Three may get help from Bush Administration, Ponzi revisited

Seems Bush doesn't want to go down as 'Hoover Lite' or 'Hoover Premium Gold.' (However, this weekend, Bush had to duck and cover two incoming size 10s. It's good to be beloved....er, well, not so much.)

The Big Three American automakers (Ford, Chrysler and GM) now have a shot at the $700 Billion promised to Wall Street without strings attached after their $14 Billion bailout plan designed for them was nixed in large part due to Republican Southern Senators - Dick Shelby -Alabama, Bob Corker - Tennessee, Lindsay Graham - South Carolina - taking issue with the UAW's inability for further concessions, specifically, reducing their pay to the levels of foreign car manufacturers not hampered by legacy costs. (And ignoring congressional ineptitude in getting these jokers to make desirable fuel effective vehicles.)

But it seems Wall Street's take on stirrings in the White House about utilizing a 'bridge loan' is more positive (and likely) everyday as the Dow closed up Friday even amidst the revelation of a $50 Billion Ponzi scheme. That's right, $50 Billion.

Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, LLC took money from the affluent and older investor class and gave to whomever wasn't them (like himself.) Somehow he was able to lose $50 Billion in investor money in a supposely legit stock trading. As former chairman of NASDAQ stock market, Madoff's reputation was spotless, but he'll go down as a close kissing relative of Charles K. Ponzi, who prior to the Great Depression used a pyramid scheme of receiving cash to pay other investors back double in 90 days. As long as more people contributed to pay the oldest investors in the scheme, the growing debts could be outran (for a while), though Ponzi was skimming money without much regard throughout.

From Rueters:
Madoff told senior employees of his firm on Wednesday that "it's all just one
big lie" and that it was "basically, a giant Ponzi scheme," with estimated
investor losses of about $50 billion, according to the U.S. Attorney's criminal
complaint against him.

Wow. It is good to be so flippant. Hope he likes prison. It sucks there.

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Last Lecture: A Lifetime Philosophy, VR Future

I just watched last night on public television 'The Last Lecture' by Carnegie Mellon professor Randy Pausch (1940-2008). It was a bit different than I expected. It gave me good enough reason to think to write this post.

Besides giving a stirring overview of what it is to achieve your dreams, I think it was as apt that I finally sat in on a lecture that actually was given by a caring professor. The lessons we were suppose to learn, and the realness of the man, came through in that a presentation. Probably why it got so much attention in a time where attention is misplaced.

Given his passing, and the work in virtual reality he did, along with many, many others he discussed humbly, the world did indeed become a less tolerable place. Now, I can here some say, "did his lecture mean that much (to you)?"

It meant that my usual scattered brain attention of watching a TV show, football game and other secondary tasks were put on hiatus on a Sunday night. That he intrigued me - even knowing I had heard of this story last year, as he sat down with Diane Sawyer, et. al. and discussed what he was doing leading up to his departure from this pebble called Earth. His work in Virtual Reality, while impressive, was not the reason for the interest. His path to a career in that field, his own learning and teaching methods, while important, were very tangential to the conversation he had with Carnegie Mellon staff, friends, colleagues and guests.

Randy Pausch's Last Lecture

In the grander scheme, his life lives on through his connections and work done on Alice - a teaching aid in the VR world. From Alice:
"Alice is an innovative 3D programming environment that makes it easy to create
an animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or a video to
share on the web. Alice is a freely available teaching tool designed to be a
student's first exposure to object-oriented programming. It allows students to
learn fundamental programming concepts in the context of creating animated
movies and simple video games. In Alice, 3-D objects (e.g., people, animals, and
vehicles) populate a virtual world and students create a program to animate the

What I think would be different and unique would to insert Randy's Last Lecture & Life Outlook into a VR program that teaches at a higher level. I think many students would gain a better relationship to their professors if somehow the experiences, teachings, lessons and philosophies of Pausch's years were embedded into a VR program. It is possible...Randy would tell you that.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A Star Trek: A New Frontier on the horizon

I just saw the new Star Trek trailer (yeah, I know its old news - November 18th) and I am thrilled to say it looks, and sounds, like a winner. The version begins at the most appropriate time - from their youth - and with the wild days of the early space conquests and battles.

Director J.J. Abrams takes over this incarnation of the 11th movie in the historic franchise. While using the Star Wars formula, going back in time to fill in the details (and make more Hollywood cash), this looks more visually stunning (as well it should) and with a wild streak that may turn this character line into a 3-5 movie arch.

Zachary Quinto (Heroes' Gabriel) plays Spock and looks very much like Mr. Nemoy's younger self. But it also seems this Spock will be an action-filled role, with a maturing Vulcan that we can find appealing on many, many levels.

Zoë Saldana (Drumline beauty and Ashton Kucher's girl in Guess Who with the late Bernie Mac) plays Uhura and will definitely spice up the role as a sexy lady on the set...(the trailer gives you a peak of that.)

For James T. Kirk, a relative newcomer, Chris Pine, may be the wildcard, though his credentials on an array of differing projects gives one hope that he can be many faces on a classic character.

To the side, I grew up a Star Trek fanatic. The original movie with V-ger (Voyager, that now fabled satellite the U.S.A. sent up, as the quest), Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home with the call of the whales needed to save Earth. (Not necessarily considered a very good movie, but it had its moments, like Mr. Scott talking to the computer, and then having to type really fast to come up with the formula for clear plexiglass made out of titanium or some such item.)
It is my hope that all Star Treks will turn out well. We need a new frontier to roam in these unsettling times.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Ahead of the Curve: Harvard Business School Book mixes with our government’s recent history

I just finished up Ahead of the Curve: Two Years at Harvard Business School by Philip Delves Broughton, a memoir about his recent experience as a graduate student at Harvard Business School, class of 2006. Considered by most as the pinnacle school to receive that prestigious MBA at, Broughton’s story (and the title aptly reflects) on what we should be considering during these difficult times, and on the people who make these decisions.
As a first aside, President George W. Bush (’75) and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson graduated from Harvard Business. President-elect Barack Obama received his Juris Doctorate from Harvard. Michael Bloomberg, New York City mayor, amongst other things, is a MBA from Harvard. The always quick-to-be-proud of his business acumen, ex-presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, did his work at the Crimson. And today, on the 45th anniversary of his assassination, it should be noted Kennedy graduated from Harvard (cum laude) in 1940, majoring in government. (Thus the Kennedy School of Government.)

So indeed, being a Harvard grad has its potential perks and peaks of power.

Englishman Broughton wrote for a living before stepping into the hallowed foray that is Harvard. As a neophyte to the world of banking, finance, hedge funds and leverage buyouts, he got a crash course in what is the terminology, psychology and manipulations of business numbers, and where it would lead him even before he got started on his two-year trek. As he soon learned, there are no clear answers; just measurements of risk and reward, possibilities defined better, and the balance of what is important to know in business, and in life.

Relating to current financial malaise, a passage from the Ahead of the Curve:
“…I once asked a hedge fund manager in New York about the reckless way credit
was sold to people who could ill afford it. I said they would be ruined. They
would lose their homes and their possessions. Where were the checks on all of
this? What would happen to all these firms lending like crazy when people
stopped paying back their loans? The hedge fund manager looked at me like I was
a madman and said, ‘It’s just economic.’ He meant that over time these borrowers
would learn their lesson. The bankrupted lenders would be bought cheaply by
other investors and turned around. The economic wheel would keep turning, no
matter how many lives had been crushed against it…” (pgs. 232-233)

As we have seen with the demise of Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearnes, WaMu, IndyMac and others likely in the queue (GM, Chrysler, Lear), the economic wheel is spinning quite well as it has indeed crushed retirement funds, and stocks and put people out of work in droves. (Citigroup announcing 50,000+ in job cuts in one week.)

Our current leader, George W. Bush, seems to have adopted a technique not-as-yet-perfected when he attended Harvard, but discussed in Ahead of the Curve, the levering up through debt. This preferred technique, of financing a buyout mainly through debt, thus recording interest paid as an expense (on that debt), produces more return on equity, to equity stakeholders, thus making them extremely happy. It works if you produce a profit, can generate the cash to pay the interest payments, and can keep other expenses down, preferably through frugality to all other concerns. At some point, you take the enterprise public again with all the miscellaneous expenses cut, but likely only a real benefit to the LBO starters of the once-fat company. The actual company, the workers, are unlikely to have received any benefits.

(2nd aside) How this relates to our current government: During the Bush administration, we have ‘levered up’ the balance sheet of the United States. Taking on more debt, trying (but not succeeding) to trim other programs (those nasty entitlements) while keeping taxes on those multi-millionaires low, even giving a tax holiday to them for a decade. The low-interest rates that spurred out-of-control lending to the non-financially savvy, and the opportunists, that both got caught in the wheels of sub-prime and housing market free falls, has loaded up more debt on the U.S. Treasury balance sheet. We continue to make our interest payments on a $10,000,000,000,000 national debt, of at least $500,000,000,000. But when do we run out of fiat money? (At least if you don’t print and print, devaluing our currency to the point of worthlessness.)

But as we’ve also seen, the entities under the auspices of too much leverage have indeed failed when the cash flows stopped to these many, many banks, insurance companies, manufacturers, retailers, and now, oil entities. The deflation of the value of things is reminiscent of the Great Depression.

We are now Behind the Eight Ball: What Harvard Business School Did Not Teach President Bush.

With a new President, Obama will have to get well ahead of the curve in order to stave off the impending doomsday scenario discuss on more than one occasion here, and now, at many other media outlets.

As Broughton also learned, business is not solely the most important entity – as ex-CEO of GE Jack Welch had surmised, quite smugly – as the government too, has its place. For one, without a government in operation, a business cannot protect its interest via laws or the enforcement of contracts. (A business would have to act as a thug to accomplish contract enforcement. Essentially, become a government entity with enforcers and judges of people’s misdeeds.)
The argument made by Welch, that government generates no revenues, and business generates all the money, so we can ignore governance, leaves aside that a symbiotic relationship has always existed. Businesses can exist without government, but only for so long as people ascribe to obeying business edicts. Otherwise, chaos and revolt and failure soon comes. Governments can exist only if people are willing, and led to accept its rules, and abide under its control. And provides some benefit, else why have it. Neither operates in a vacuum.

The book presents Broughton engrossed in the whys of how he decided on Harvard B-School, only to not go immediately from there to a big corporate job, either as an marketing/product manager at Google, a hedge fund operator at Bain, an overworked, type-A financier on The Street, or a start-up city controller as he envisioned in one entrepreneurial leap-of-faith posited. Mr. Broughton’s book maybe a business school companion volume of One L by Scott Turow, the exploration of what it is to become a legal mind and those ramifications, but it truly reflects, that writers, are what they are: able to mirror, emote, characterize, judge and divine truth when at their best.

That somewhere on the curve, there is a path to another road, with another curve to come out ahead on.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Overnight Idea: The Virtual and Personal MBA

In thinking about what would be a really different and challenging thought, I came to this idea: Design a MBA program around internet searched materials, library books and course materials bought on the cheap or obtained for free. Now, (I know) this seems reaching into an area that is all ready done well enough to turn out so many competent and creative souls. I mean, look at Wall Street and all their recent successes?

To me this will a be a project of compiling data, doing the actual course work discovered at MIT Free Online Courses, incorporating known models at Harvard, Princeton University Economics, Columbia, Stanford, Michigan and Northwestern resources, while adding in the latest business thoughts, from entreprenuerial to regulatory practices.

A music interlude: Johnny Cash's I Walk The Line

By no means is this going to be groundbreaking or money making. It's a desire to learn and study in depth what makes all these $100,000 a year people (well, more in NYC, less, in Midwest fly-over) include oddities and books that are classic, and others, that teach a different mantra, that isn't in Milton Friedman's wettest dreams.

I wanted to take the GMAT years ago, back in 1998-99. Studied, bought the Princeton Review book, etc. Got sidetracked and wound up taking the LSAT. Scanner at heart and soul.

So, this will be a new project with a twist or two likely. I like to incorporate information into a model of how something works. Which is what Business is: a model of what works and what doesn't.

More interesting is to discover how Economics, Business, Law and Public Policy work (or don't work) together.

I figure it will take 2-3 years of reading, writing, researching and designing the course work. With plenty I won't learn or know, but plenty that will enlighten me to the history and evolution of what a true MBA graduate should know.

Example: Jim Kramer's Warning in October 2008 about Stock Market

I will post my work: course study, books read or researched, internet articles, business channel stuff, youtube vids, research papers I will write (God willing) and compiled program of PDFs, Powerpoint stuff, Excel spreadsheets, etc. Maybe it will work out well.

There is a few of goals to this: to create both a virtual program and get what others are learning (or mislearning) in their programs. Criticism is welcome - as well as resources that are good to use or available for free. Nearly free is also the goal. Who is getting their education on the cheap in these hard economic times?

I figure if I can put together a comprehensive, intelligent and understandable model for a learning (with the undergrad course stuff included), why does education need to be so expensive?

I'm not selling this idea yet. But it has merit. People need choices that are low cost and digestable in 1 1/2 -2 year window of learning. Also, the path to enlightenment is usually a personal experience more than a guided tour by people with their own motivations and shortsightness built in.

I hope that in the end I can be more informed while informing others in the process.

My 1st semester will start in January 2009. Till then, I am compiling the nuts and bolts of what I need to include and discover during the next 2 years.

(So, that Perfect Storm post will take a backseat.)

Final Music: Johnny Cash's God's Gonna Cut You Down

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday Music: Just doing the 1980's

These would be the in the mode of sounds that everyone heard in a multitude of bands that copied or did better (or worse) than the ones I picked out.

Duran Duran was at the top of their game from 1982-1986.

Simple Minds: Does anyone remember any other band that got more out of one song in movie? (Berlin's Take My Breath Away, maybe from TOP GUN?)

Depeche Mode & OMD were listened to by Vision Wear people, riding skateboards (then an act of rebellion) and the pre-Seattle angst crowd.

It's Friday, go do The Big 80's!!!

Depeche Mode - People are People. Well, they are?

OMD - If You Leave. Classic Sync Pop Band.

Simple Minds - Don't You (Forget About Me). The Breakfast Club. The launcher of careers and weird spoofs.

Duran Duran - Hungry Like the Wolf. And out on the prowl!!! Meow!!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Post Mortem: The 2008 Chicago Cubs

I took awhile before writing this final 2008 baseball blog. The Chicago Cubs had a wonderful regular season. Not since Ryne Sandberg was MVP and Gary Matthews was the 3-hole hitter have the Cubs piled up as many victories. So, it was a shame they bowed out early to a hot Dodgers team.

What probably hurt more was the way they lost 3 straight games. Game 1: Ryan Dempster suddenly can't find the dish. Gives up a granny and the Cubs offense disappeared under the Meadowlands with Jimmy Hoffa. Game 2: A comedy of infield errors led this Cub fan to want drink excessively, start a fight with a 65 year-old Dodger fan geezer and hope Game 3 in La-la would be fa la la la, la la la la terrific. Game 3: No life in this body as the Cubs showed up dead on arrival.

I am not a poor, pitiful Cubs fan.

Sure, I am poor enough that a new Democratic president will have to give me a tax break in order for me survive through the Second Great Depression. Pitiful would be dependent upon whether my income, car options, job prospects, lack of girlfriend or living arrangements deserves such pity. (I think they do.) Cubs fan: We have seen the last 100 years leave us behind in a dusty trail of Texas dust. But I am not a poor, pitiful Cubs fan.

As an original member of the National League, one steeped in an odd ball history of very good play for nearly 34 years (1876-1910), that went through 2nd division droughts like the one between 1946-1966, and have the tagline lovable losers attached to one's franchise woes, ineptitude and managerial stupidity, it almost seems too funny to get an attack from a Ranger fan.

I wrote a piece about Josh Hamilton this season shortly after the Home Run Derby display. I felt that Texas had bargained shop a guy that should have been where I was, in life - and that was likely given his addictions and proclivities before he 'got saved.' But he turned it around. And that impressed.

I don't harbor any delusions about the Cubs or the playoffs. As Billy Beane was quoted (or miquoted): "My shit doesn't work in the playoffs." The Cubs' shit didn't work in the playoffs because they left their shit in the shithouse of 100 seasons of disappointments. I can relate to these Cubs, with all their potential, their dreams and ambitions, only to come up on the very short side of a playoff ass kicking.

But I don't need curses or Bartmans to know that being so close to the brass ring is actually more a kick in the teeth that being a mediocre also-ran team for 3 decades plus that can't find pitching, but digs up the hitters a plenty, is.

No one is promised a shot at the playoffs.

If the wild card was nixed, the Cubs would have played the Los Angeles Angels in the World Series this year. (Using pre-1969 rules.) Of course, many many millions of dollars would have been forfeited under that design, and thus, not in the best interests of baseball. So we have a playoff. We reward team mediocrity by allowing barely .500 teams in the dance as division winners or wildcards undercast in the same role.

The 1998 Cubs benefited from this rule. So did the 2003 Florida Marlins who beat my Cubs and the Yankees to boot. (And they, the Marlins, still can't get fans, a stadium deal or whatever else a South Floridian needs to root for them. Let me live on South Beach and I'll build the goddamn stadium for them.)

But I can't feel pity or sorrow for teams that haven't mastered the new playoff paradigm. I've seen enough baseball to know that it is as much luck as it is skill in building a champion - or at least a playoff bound team. Oakland did it with money that wouldn't buy a 3rd rate action film in Hollywood. Texas had A-Rod, and nobody else. Spent foolishly on pitchers that couldn't get me out.

But that's the past.

We all need to go forward except for those fans still lucky enough to root for their 2008 teams.

Go Tampa Bay!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

$700 Billion Dollars: Dr. Evil would be aghast

How can one deny that the U.S. Economy is in a shambles now? How did John McCain get to be nominee of his party with his lack of understanding of basic market fundamentals? Why did this all happen? At my other blog - Bringin' Gas and Dialin' 9 - I posted about this Perfect Storm in mid-July but only one person responded to the charge, a Brit with wit.
The idea of us going into a Great Depression was bantered about on March 14, 2008 as the fall of Bear Stearnes took place. That almost seems trivial as Lehman Brothers, IndyMac Bank and others visited Davey Jones.

But is $700 Billion to Wall Street really the answer? Dr. Evil would blush amid scornful reminders of his idiotic plan: "I will launch a 'Death ray' aimed at Wall Streeters, to sooth my pain...Nice pussy" (Petting his cat.)

It was interesting to watch Hillary Clinton on Today, whose husband signed the law that made this collapse possible (with Phil Gramm's urging), call this "The Perfect Storm." No shit. You suddenly are a writer using wit to score points amid this fiasco you call a market?

Frankly, if $700 Billion is available, I would suggest the following distribution:
  1. Wall Street has access to a $100 Billion credit window. Only if they do the following:

a) the 50 largest banks in the world (if such a number exists) sit down daily between 1PM and midnight in New York (or via satellite) and discuss the bad debt they generated. They argue and discuss the whole problem everyday for as long as it takes to figure out whose got what, what can be salvaged and where does regulation of these exotic financial instruments go from here. I expect, no, require 2-3 weeks worth of hard work out of these $2,500 suits wearers.

b) set up reasonable terms with people making $50,000 per year and have a mortgage. Cut back their cut and tell their stockholders it is this or, "the government will let us collapse."

2. $200 Billion in infrastructure investments. Roads, Schools, Electrical power, storm walls and things that people need immediately done in their areas. This isn't rocket science, we know where the poor people are and what they are not getting.

3. 150 Billion in investments in energy and high-technology solutions to pressing environmental and energy crisis. The cars we drive are terrible on gas. Fix them. The analysis on global warming and farming concerns lack. Get'er done.

4. $100 Billion to people that can not get student loans, car loans, home improvements or other needed upgrades. 2% interest rates per annum. Guaranteed qualification for it. Must make under $50,000 per year.

5. $150 Billion in job retooling of America. The country needs more than fast food, retail outlets and government teets to suck on. It needs an industrial, technological might that kept us near or at the top.

6. Foreign aid. (Of the $700 Billion, 21 Billion should go to overseas development in Africa and other struggling countries. Somehow, I think we can get people to join the Peace Corps or other worthwhile endeavors if we pay the way for them to work on pressing issues.)

That's my plan. Wall Street doesn't get nickels for nothing.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Clinched!:Someday We’ll Go All The Way!!!

In eager anticipation of the 2008 NL Central title by your Chicago Cubs, I am posting the new and only theme song the Cubs will ever need again. As rock legend Eddie Vedder belts out the best (or the most recent best) song about baseball glory.

The Cubs are at the edge of greatness once again. The last time they appeared in back-to-back post seasons was nearly the time William Howard Taft was taking office. (Right) (His half-brother, Charles, owned the Cubs for a short time.)

In honor of these heady times, A video masterpiece by fahrenba with Vedder’s “Someday We’ll Go All The Way” supporting the pics is in order.

The Cubs are blessed to have such diehards.

In a world filled with greed, as Vedder states, and the videophotographer points out, while in the simple act of playing a child’s game to such excellence in front of 3 million plus fans yearly, makes up for that avarice seen in many, many folks. It has to, or else, the world becomes rather meaningless.

The 2008 Cubs year has seen many runs on history.

Winning more games than in a very long time. (1984)
Home dominance. (53-26, after today, 54-26.)
A trio of 15-game winners. (Hopefully…)
The resurrection of a career in Kerry Wood.
A no-hitter by Carlos Zambrano. (Milt Pappas, 1972. I was 4 weeks old.)

But to understand the Cubs, Vedder’s lyrics (below) tell you all you need to know. Good Luck, Cubs. See you in LA, twice, hopefully.

Someday We’ll Go All The Way
Yeah, don’t let them say that it’s just a game.
Well, I’ve seen other teams and it is never the same.
When your born in Chicago, you’re blessed and you’re healed,
The first time you walk into Wrigley Field.
Our Heroes wear pinstripes, heroes in blue,
Give us the chance to feel like heroes do.
Whether we’ll win, and if we should lose,
we know Someday we’ll go all the way.
Yeah, someday we’ll go all the way.

We are one with the Cubs, with the Cubs we’re in love.
Yeah, Hold our heads high as the underdogs.
We are not fairweather, but foulweather fans.
Like brothers in arms, in the streets and the stands.
There’s magic in the Ivy and the old score board.
The same one I stared at as a kid keeping score.
In a world full of greed, I could never want more.
And Someday we’ll go all the way.
Yeah, someday we’ll go all the way.

And Someday we’ll go all the way.
Yeah!! someday we’ll go all the way.

And Here’s to the men and the legends we’ve known.
Teaching us faith and giving us hope.
United we stand and united we’ll fall
Down to our knees the day we win it all.
Yeah Ernie Banks said, “oh, let’s play two”.
Did he mean two hundred years?
In the same ballpark, our diamond, our jewel.
The home of our joy and our tears.
Keeping traditions, and wishes made new,
The place where our grandfathers’ fathers they grew.
The spiritual feeling, if I ever knew.
If you ain’t been, I am sorry for you.
And when the day comes for that last winning run, and I’m crying and covered in beer.
I look to the sky and know I was right today.

Someday we’ll go all the way.
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way.

Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way.
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way!
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way!!
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way!!!
Oh! someday we’ll go all the way!!!
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way!!!
Yeah! someday we’ll go all the way.

Songwriter Eddie Vedder was born Edward Louis Severson III in Chicago in the north suburb of Evanston. He is the front man of 1990’s alternative/grunge rock, then Seattle-based, Pearl Jam. He won a Golden Globe award for his Into the Wild soundtrack. He is a lifelong Cubs fan. God Bless him.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday Music: Under my milky way tonight

The Church - Under the Milky Way

The Ramones - "Blitzkrieg Bop" (Live) Studio Hamburg

MGMT- Electric Feel

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My Garbage Poetry: Love is Just A Word

Love is Just A Word
Between lovat and Lovecraft,
The plaid garb maker; with a horror undertaker.

Love comes in muted tones; and exuberant utterances.
At times, unconditional –
and often,
under the only condition we can't give into.

When we fall in Love –
it take our eyes,
our limbs,
our stomachs,
and twists them in knots.
The cure is: to never think a lot.

It spins our head, our body, our loins to passions unbelieved –
It drowns itself in sorrow, and thinks of make believe.

When between Lourdes and an a Love Song by Eliot
The tomb has cures; the writer – wishes on his mind.
As we pass through, this time, this enchanted faith-filled evening
We find Love is just not a word, but a world – our senses are reeling.

The meaning of such a word takes on profoundly tender passions –
To win love, we search the seas, mountains, the very air we breath.
Only to discover: that it can not be...

Between an Apex and a Zenith, two celestial bodies can be in the same.
They inhabit a moment of pure joy; the culmination of the game.

But is not a game –
Tender hearts, with wispy words, bring love down to nothing.

For to just say, “Love,” is meaningless.

But to love again – – is more than just a word.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Cross Post: McCain’s judgment in economics is inherently flawed

As the markets spin out of control, with wild swings based on calamitous events such as Countrywide, MBIA, Ambac, Bear Stearnes, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, IndyMac, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and AIG, why do many insist that Bush’s administration, or his party’s nominee, John McCain, have gotten anything right at all?

John McCain’s former top economic advisor, ex-U.S. Senator Phil Gramm of Texas, had a primary hand in the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 that eliminated the firewall protections made by the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 between investment, commercial banking, and insurance services during the Great Depression when so many banks failed. As a result of this deregulation, we are now seeing the enormous problems of integrated services spread like a plague throughout the market as many of these financial players mixed investments and savings and high-risk loans together and across various business entities.

McCain’s economic proclamations and company kept should be an albatross around his neck. You cannot expect change from a man that hires people that called Americans, “a nation of whiners,” during an economic crisis of their making. Meaning: Phil Gramm had his hand in your misery and now blames you for it.

Phil Gramm continues to be major cog in McCain’s campaign.

How is that change we can believe in?

Late Addition: (WaMu, another bank, is headed for sale....Yahoo Business)
A quote from the link:

But TPG agreed to waive the clause after concluding WaMu needs all the help
it can get.
"It became clear that it would be in the best interests of
Washington Mutual and our investors to waive the ... provisions,"
Worth, Texas-based TPG said in a statement. "Our goal is to maximize the
bank's flexibility in this difficult market environment."
The efforts to
find a buyer, though, were being complicated by uncertainty about the magnitude
of losses still lurking in Washington Mutual's home loan portfolio.
one knows what's in their books,"
said a person briefed on the talks
between regulators and banks, speaking Wednesday on the condition of anonymity
because of the sensitivity of the matter.

Citing unidentified sources, the New York Post said the potential
buyers include JPMorgan Chase & Co. and HSBC Holdings PLC., as well as Wells
Fargo. The banks all declined to comment.

Nice to see the whole financial system is in scared rabbit mode. Hopping up and down the road, looking for a way out while a Mack truck bears down on their position.

It won't be long now people. Look out below minimum wage workers. Get prepared for calamity you lower-middle class (under $50,000) per year people. Cut back considerably you upper middle class wannabes. The Rich: you'll go to your pile of bricks, lock you doors and come out when the getting is good again.

Good Luck All!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Economic Woe: I don't like Hurricane IKE or the U.S. Economy

If you lived in the Caribbean this year, it has to suck. Haiti, Cuba, Turks and Caicos, all hit by the storms Gustav and now, IKE. Ike is heading into the Gulf, again, bearing down on New Orleans by this recent projection. My agnostic prayers are with you.

Today, my mother is seeing a bankruptcy attorney. Hopefully, he'll take the case. Because, folks, it is pretty grim for her (and myself) if she doesn't get the bleeding stopped. Unlike Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, who have the U.S. government taking over their affairs, I haven't the power to takeover my mother's or my aunt's yet.

On my other blog, I related that I would address The Perfect Storm, aka, the current financial crisis. I have flaked out only due to a myriad of other concerns. Like getting food, shelter and gas paid for or at least addressed. Assuming I can get the research back on track, I'll complete it. But, if not, here's a few highlights:

Because of these and various underlying stories, there is a likelihood of a severe recession and possibly, the D-word.

People at the bottom will really feel it.

Good Luck riding out this Perfect Storm.

Friday, August 29, 2008

TGIF: Beautiful Things

Just a few beautiful things for the weekend:

Andain-Beautiful Things

Barack Obama's Speech from Denver: Part of his acceptance speech

Paige Butcher Pic (from Supermodels.nl):

The Rolling Stones Satisfaction:

Friday, August 22, 2008

Music, Change and The Crisis: The Politics of Dancing in the Land of Confusion

The Politics of Dancing song (below) takes me back to the Big 80's when Reaganomics ruled, Wall Street had a 5-year cocaine and credit-inspired boom and Less Than Zero was considered a pretty cool take on addiction, unless you were Robert Downey Jr. (Bret Easton Ellis wrote the Less Than Zero book, and also, American Psycho and Rules of Attraction.)

The Rules of Politics, if there were such a creature lurking somewhere off the shores of Kennebunkport, might be to trash everything your opponent ever voted for. Chastised his acquisition of wealth, power and clout at all human costs. Put a spin on their take so violent that a world class figure skater or gymnast could not fathom the rotations involved. Maybe most important, never tell anyone how you really intend to solve any problem, because, someone, somewhere is going to be hurt by your plan. (You can never please everyone all the time. Or even some of the time. So it might as well be none of the time, in my opinion.)

The Politics of Dancing: Not as hard as the Politics of Politics

But as we all have come to know well, no matter how hard you think this time will be different and groundbreaking, there is always doubt. (Like, for example, the Cubs winning a World Series.) We want to change the world from the ground up. The grass roots are the places where things can really get done, if, and only if, we could part ways with the concepts drilled into us by the society at large.

Some of which are never seen as harmful or undermining, like religion, but often truly are too dogmatic and confrontational individually to be espoused as the framework or bedrock on which we could change the real big picture.

The Politics of Changing America is a art I can rarely see working. There are too many factions. Too many old, tired and worn out reasons for behaviors and circumstances. Too many people with hands in the pockets of poor folk. Too many blind eyes staring into the abyss of what is a faltering America. Too many excuses. Too many deadly sins.

Land of Confusion: Too many people making too many problems

But it has to be apart of us to fix something. I had the misfortune of screwing up my life in ways most who read anything I have written can't even truly understand where I am at until they read between the lines.

My mother and aunt will either complete a bankruptcy or lose their house, possibly both. My latest post at my other personal blog explores that to reaches you won't want to go, I suppose.

America is also likely heading for a catastrophe the likes of which hasn't been seen in 80 years. I see it. People are selling off cars, personal items and anything else they can in NW Indiana. 50% of the mortgages in America are in 2 failing entities: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Banks are tight. Too tight. Afraid of the next shoe that will drop. It is coming...I feel it. (But why listen to me?)

My personal maliase intercepts this politics of dancing around the issues. Not exploring solutions, just lying to you, to me and anyone else with a brain and time to research. This has been in the making for nearly 30 years...much like my own predicament.

Anyways, if you politick enough, you might believe it is "all ok" and the world is "not confused or lost," just dancing while a little bit tipsy. God bless ignorance and bliss.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

In Memoriam: Skidz, the Cat (Summer 1990- August 8, 2008)

I will be putting a picture up soon of my mother's oldest cat, who had a heart attack yesterday. She had a cardiac event/stroke on Thursday, causing her to act very different and glassy eyed staring at things. But the the lasting memory of Skidz was her hiding under the covers so that you could always have a leg warmer at night.

My mother took her in shortly after I went off to school. I guess Skidz kept her company since I was no longer around during the school year. Though never a super-friendly cat, she did mellow as she got older. The last few years I spent more time around her and that added to my remembrance of her.

Yesterday, my mother was a wreck. Really, I think all the recent troubles went into that outpouring of emotion for Skidz. The fact the day was nearly ruined by the fact the "new $500 car" I got was unable to be registered due to a title signature. So, last night I drove it illegally (with mom shotgun) to do the paper route.

Skidz's passing just means my mother has one more loss and one more reason to feel things are stacked against her (and us.) Really, the recent car dilemmas might be at the hands of a mischevious mechanic that has taken advantage of (or sought to sucker her.) A series of misfortunate choices just don't add up. (And things I just got wind of.) So it goes...

Skidz, I know you're better off, not because Mom didn't care or love or do everything to make your life right, but because the time had come and whatever extra existence their might be, you'll be a sight better there than here.

Rest in peace, Skidz.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Saturday Songs: Just Music until Monday - with thoughts

Terence Trent Darby - Wishing Well I listened to this at Purdue, summer of 1988, while still in high school. My HS roommate was Alfredo Portales from Texas. I wonder what happened to Alfredo...

Digital Underground - The Humpty Dance. "I once got busy in a Burger King Bathroom." Is there anything more crude (and dirty, literally) than that particular situation.

Stevie Ray Vaughan - Life by the Drop. For a friend I used to hang with for nearly a decade. Stevie for Steve. Stevie passed in August 1990. Steve's been gone since December 2000.

Rod Stewart - Every Picture Tells a Story. Well, Don't it???

Kiss & Garth Brooks - Hard Luck Woman.(Live) Yes it is cool to see country doing rock. I bought the CD with numerous artists doing KISS. Tributes can be cool.

Dave Matthews Band - What Would You Say? (Live at PinkPop 2007) I'd say my favorite band of the 1990's...

Ray Charles - Georgia on My Mind. (Live) A little, slow dance music to go with the group. Thanks!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Short selling your readers: Hey I might as well, given Wall Street

I will try to produce more relevant posts in the future. I realize I get too far afield from my main interests, but, it is more interesting to write (and learn while doing it) about a wide array of things.

I choose to be a bit different than the attention-seeking types that have infested the blog world. They have their place. They make their claims to popularity and make a few coins while they are at it. Hey, if I could really turn this into a mint, printing Yuans at a fever pitch, I would. But then I would have to move to the People's Republic. (Not in this lifetime - maybe my next one.)

So whatever you see, or hear, here, it is likely a hodge-podge of thoughts, feelings and concerns. Hey, I can focus on the Chicago Cubs all I like. Or Bush's idiocy. There's plenty of material on both. We got financial markets in a rollcoaster ride - all those SIVs, CDOs, NINJAs are coming back on them hard. A Balance of Payment situation - thanks to all those imports and Nixon and his suspension of a Gold Standard. We got oil and refineries running in weird ways - like 25 cent price jumps in one day!

Darfur gets another year of inadequate defense - because you know, the U.S. doesn't want to take part in any real stoppage of injustice. Middle East...like the Wild, Wild West.

Personally, I'll be 36 in 4 days. And so much the poorer for it. I'm suppose to grow into happiness as I get older, while females get less satisfaction from their old age. Well, I've always been a bit on the margins of anything...

If I could solve anything in my own life, the world would beckon. I could fix a local government or two. Maybe get people to stop putting up with democrats and republicans (notice I didn't capitalize them.) Vote some real people with real ideas.

But, I guess Obama has his work cut out for him, assuming that latent racism of America doesn't kick in. And believe me, I don't think being President will be a fun ride between 2009-2013.

I'll write more next week. Later.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Obama in writing: The man can write on the spot too!

This is courtesy of Passport a blog by the editors of Foreign Policy.
It is a very well written and brief message to Yad Vashem, Israel's Holocaust memorial.

Just another piece in the Obama story/history.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

21st Century Search: Too 'Cuil' for Goo-gle

The 21st century is here in the form of Cuil, the new websearch platform. I had just heard about it, on TV, the one now I can barely watch because we are sans cable. (So try 4 channels and nothing on...)

Back to Cuil, pronounced "Cool", the sleek design of this platform is pretty nifty. You can search with 2 or 3 columns shown, it has an interesting way of showing results and you currently are not shown a bunch of advertising for pills or whatever impulse buyers want. It works - and the searches are bringing up more relevant results. I put in "Obama" and got what I wanted. I put in "Sabermetrics" and got more interesting hits than on Google or Yahoo!. I put in "Franklin Delano Roosevelt" and got to see his house/mansion and that history....Cool!

Anna Patterson, President and Founder, worked for the "Evil Empire" - aka Google - and was the architect of TeraGoogle. Russell Power, VP of Engineering and Founder was also instrumental to Google success. Louis Monier, VP of Products, ditto. So, what gives? Not knowing these techies/business developers/scientists at all, I suppose there was a difference of opinion on the future of what Google was doing.

Cuil says they will not keep search history on your computer. They have 3 times as many pages stored to choose from. (That's a bonus!) They have good organization by category embedded in each search. And well, they're cool!

It will be difficult for me to get too excited, but I feel I'll give them the standard galactic trial period of 1 month to win me over. (And of course, giving me a free website for promoting theirs would go a long way to making the trip to China I'll be planning if things don't turn around soon in the United States. Might as well be a rich communist instead of a poor capitalist.)

So hit Cuil! They are too cuil for school!

Cuil means knowledge

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Saturday Brief: A Song, A movie and a lark

If you are expecting depth, go to the Mariana Trench (above) some 35,000 feet under water.

Nope, just a song:
The Duke Spirit -The Step and The Walk

A Movie (based on Hunter's book): Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

A lark: I think I'll get shit faced on Mad Dog and Old English 800, go to the casinos tonight, blow my $40 in hard earned cash at the BJ table, and pick up a $5 dollar tranny on Rush street in Chi-town. Then, do some blow in the alley, hoping to get mugged by some street thug (penniless at this point) and luckily, won't be dead before sunrise. Sounds like a plan, and maybe, a book.
Happy Weekend to you! Happy Weekend to you! Happy Weekend to (put name here)! Happy Weekend to You!!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Local Politics: Budget causes Public Services to be Cut

In today's NWI Times, I got to see an example of politically expeditious action about eliminating 27 part-time public defenders. Story here.

My response to the NWI Times:
Public Defender Misses The Point of Public Service

The Times recent praise of public defender/councilman Tom O’Donnell is overblown. While he can be commended for his “sacrifice” of $20,300 in assured state pay plus benefits to reduce budgetary shortfalls, the undermining of the fragile scales of justice received little scrutiny.

That, with the reduction from 27 part-time to 5 full-time public defenders sounds optimal, the shifting of this workload would seemingly defy sound operation. If each of those part-timers assisted 15 hours/week, the 5 full-time representatives would work 81 hours to maintain the same caseloads. If a Times article from the recent past is to be believed, one PD, Dolores Aylesworth, carried 272 cases. This leaves aside competency.

Maybe more telling is O’Donnell’s desires:
“My goal to do better public service overrides my desire to be a public
Serving an indigent alleged criminal may not seem like much of a public service, sir, but what other public service has the possibility to set free an innocent person, and serve a more profound, greater good? The cards are stacked heavily against true criminals going free with policemen, probation, forensics, prosecutors, criminal psychologists and judges fighting on behalf of victims. Public defender services are easy to dismiss; but rarely, without a human price to be paid.

Overall, it is necessary to cut the budget. I feel it is unlikely that those with no voice afforded them will get fairness in this round of assessment. So I lent mine.

(Not to be included in response to the Times)
P.S. I would seriously like The Times to do more thorough research into the budget. For example: I noticed zero reductions in prosecutor staff was mentioned? If the goal is to cut excess, I can'timagine every prosecutor is at their wit's end.

Police force, fire, administrative help, vehicles sold for recoup, assets underutilized or ignored but could be swap/sold to other municipalities, are just for starters.

$15 million should be across the board - no dept. left alone.

A finance committee is politically motivated. Take care of buddies...barter over protection of each other's area of control. Don't rock the boat.

It was too easy to just say, "cut the PD staff." They are lawyers that want to spend less time on poor people who made poorer choices.

A councilman isn't losing his job, but gaining a stronger foothold in the political psychology of the locals. "He gave up his $20,000" for us. Bullshit. He gained $20,000 in his next political campaign - via donations and free media...from you.

Cynical I am, but right I also am.

Monday, July 21, 2008

More 'Chicago' Music: Rachael Yamagata & David Gray

Electronica got big in the mid-1990's, IMO. Songs 3-5 are a reflection of that.

Worn Me Down - Rachael Yamagata played in Chi-town for 6 years. I can dig it. 'Alias' video with her beautiful, driving song supporting the action. I never watched Alias.

David Gray's Babylon (Live in Chicago): Has had quite a successful career. 3 or 4 solid hits.

Born Slippy -Underworld (Live in 1999) - Trainspotting...

Treat Infamy - Rest Assured - Is a favorite of mine. (Bittersweet Symphony sampled and enhanced...)

Madonna doing Bittersweet Symphony with The Verve

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A few songs coming back around: Born of Frustration

James- Born of Frustration. "Stop, stop talking about whose to blame..."
James made a good living off quirky, poppy stuff. Like this more serious one...

The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary. Probably hit this one before. Its got just a drive in it. I could be in a convertible driving 95 down I-95...and wouldn't give a damn if I got pulled over.

The Killers - Somebody Told Me. Good sound. Another one that gets the blood pumping.

Proper Education - Eric Prydz. What's a dance mix without a Pink Floyd send up and environmental warning mixed together.

Morgan Page feat. Lissie - The Longest Road. Dance Clubs are putting this in heavy rotation.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Having a Bad Day: Watching TV and reading probably isn't helping...

It seems we all are victims of the media and being junkies to the fix of news that makes us seem smarter, but in reality, likely depresses. (Unless you are making way more bank that I am...continue reading.) How do we stay happy? I suppose not watching the tele, and riding around with Arthur Fonzarelli, might work to our benefit. Reading these damn blogs that point to our future destruction (guilty am I) is likely a sure causation of your malaise. Hey, it sucks to learn (or hope to learn) why people will fail you, take you for granted or hurt you to no foreseeable end.

So, what can I do? Nada.

I am stuck in the same Hate it Boat you are. No shiny and new answers. No Isaac on the prominade deck pouring you drinks to your heart's content and liver's demise. I wish, oh I wish, someone could make me a real, real rich dude in the Grand Cayman Islands. But that's entertainment at the price of knowledge. Foregoing the actualities of where we are, where we might be going and the rest of being a caring human being on the waves of this stormy time. (It has been stormy before humanity...it just feels like the first time. And not pleasurable like sex is...or is suppose to be, the first time, but isn't.)

I should tell you to stop reading and watch that TV. The source of such pain and painful images. To tune out in these nefarious times. Turn to your inner goodness and try to think happy thoughts and live a happy life. But then someone else, yet to be met, will gouge your eyes our and skull fuck you right out of a normal, happy existence. (Full Metal Jacket, Stanley Kubrick homage)
Then, you'll meet the media, tell your story of pain and tragedy, possibly sue for enormous damages and likely, will not forgive that transgression until your old, senile or give up the idea that person can make whole your life. You'll be depressed. You'll turn back to TV or books to figure out why.
Don't. It doesn't help. Just try to move ahead. Leave behind all that bile and get back to being happy.
Being informed about crises is just our way of being a the guy who slows down to see the police handle an accident. We don't care so much as we like to stare...Back to TV!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Scooped! : Going to Wordpress was a Messy Affair

Yesterday, in anticipation of moves to be made by MLB teams (Cubs), I was busy posting, “(K)Night Moves: Big trade means the chess game is on, and another big splash is possible.” But, as often is the case, the post was confounded by technology, and my inability to rectify the situation. (The post is a day old...but written actually Sunday Night to be posted Mondayish...)

I post all my blogs from the Lowell Public Library. Their new ID system limits computer usage to a maximum of 2 hours per day. So I must read articles, write/revise, respond to blogs/emails and craft posts in a matter of that time. (I am financially strapped for cash. So much so, that paying $20/month for internet isn’t possible.)

As a result, in the process of doing this posting, my article was distorted on this website. It looked horrible; and the links, many researched in short order, were all missing. It honked me off to no end.

Highlights of that now “old news” post:
  1. Milwaukee’s acquisition of CC Sabathia. In chess, ‘a powerful queen moved’ on the board.
  2. Pitching in the post-season trumps offensive juggernauts. (Table of recent powerful offenses – greater than 900 Runs scored.)
  3. Acquiring a top-flight pitcher, a queen, from Oakland. (Rich Harden.
  4. Giving up SP Sean Gallagher and minor league C John Donaldson, both of whom have bright futures as discussed in prior posts on this site. The rooks and pawns of a mega deal.

I write this now as a reminder to those writers who likely learned this tidbit eons before I: get the story in, even if it isn’t perfect. I messed up formatting and my links were gone, but I had the right idea. My struggles with Wordpress are limited to a post here or there. Somehow, it seems to jumble up my best work – with tables and images important – when I need them most.

At the root cause of this dilemma is my own personal flaws. With ample income and requisite time to complete such easy tasks as research of this sport, I could put together well-thought out and structured posts. Even do it as my daily bread. But that’s the cookie crumbling around me. 100s of thousands of writers are fighting their demons – message crafting, self-esteem issues, addictive behaviors and so on – and manage to not get 'scooped' on a story.

Why I mention all this?

Because it is always a writer’s dream to make observations about a circumstance that few (if any) are thinking long and hard on. And have those musings come to a head, with the pertinent facts in place and the foundation undisturbed. (It wasn't completely a shock, but I did have several postings back in late May and early June related to the pitching hunt...)

In sport, everyone has an opinion. Anecdotal observations are constantly made. Some expand it to include actual statistics – though they usually leave out anything detrimental to their thesis. It doesn’t behoove many to break apart the arguments, get down to the nitty gritty, because after all, it is just a game.

But since I write about it, and hope to predict and project where these Cubs are going, I am glad to see that this trade went through.

Good Luck to Sean Gallagher, Matt Murton, Eric Patterson and Josh Donaldson.
And say hello to Rich Harden and Chad Gaudin.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Politics: 2009 Faux Inaugural Address

[History of our Country’s Patriotism]
The time was mid-summer, 1776. A powerful nation stood as an insurmountable barrier to the prosperity and operation of a 170-year old colony of thirteen, then divided. The previous decade had seen tumultuous and dangerous circumstances rule the day. No one felt free; and the far away King did not listen. Crisis was assured.

The wisest course of action would have been to accept the situation as is: to not infuriate and throw off the mighty government that held sway; to give up in the darkest hours of a fledgling Nation under haphazard leadership; to deny the Dream of Peace, Prosperity and Freedom. But our Forefathers determined that it was a time to break those bonds and strike a new accord. To declare it could do better and should be free to design its future.

In our 232 years as a Nation hence, we the people have forged an everlasting union to the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence. That we shall evince an equitable design for all Man to see; to make Freedom our truest value; that a single Proclamation can change the Course of human events; and that all Men shall be Equal under God Almighty.

In those same 232 years, we have past through trying times and evolved through the world events and the ingenuity of Man, of America. That even in conflict, we reached for the same founding ideals, the same credos, the same hope to guide us to a better day and build upon the unshakeable foundation we shall never succumb, and never allow to be compromised.

We are the generation of settlers born out of Plymouth Rock. We are the Puritans and Lutherans. We are the merchants, the farmers, the toilers in the trades. We are the writers and founders of American Independence. We are the Natives of this land. We are the downtrodden and the dreamers. The Immigrants of Europe, Asia and Africa. We are the Gilded Age, the voices of tired laborers, wounded soldiers, Western prairie settlers and the caregivers in times of war, and of peace. We are survivors of Two World Wars. The people of the hardest times, The Great Depression. The Boomers who came after them. We also bore witness to a hidden war; we bare witness to a nation still divided by color, creed and disproportionate prosperity since Vietnam. And we continue to forge ahead, through crises, and the completion of our inspired mission.

We have also found fellowship in our mutual belief in humanity. The cause of designing a new Nation. The dreams of our fathers and mothers. And the sacrifices of our sons and daughters made time and time again. This hearty experiment in Democracy, which has spread to the far reaches of the Earth, has been buttressed on the unfettered and unquenchable fire of liberty burning in the bellies of the American people. We are all responsible for its existence.

[Challenges of the past eight years]
As we take stock of our most recent events, the designs and desires of various masters, it is best to separate ourselves from that, and those, that have done us greatest harm by understanding our needs for Justice must not be at the price of our Principles. As President Kennedy intoned: “When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the areas of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses. For art establishes the basic human truth which must serve as the touchstone of our judgment.” [Amherst College, Oct. 26, 1963.]

Our nation’s power comes from an abiding strength in it, and the wise frugality of its use; but also the knowledge that the repository of our power is vast, and can be unleashed with rapidity. To garner Justice we will do whatever it takes without hesitation. In the use of such power we will employ that which will protect us, and keep us Free as our Forefathers rightfully designed. But the Poetry of America is to decree Our Rights are sacrosanct; untouchable by foreign and alien ideologies. We shall prevail over all enemies with our adamant poetry and our indomitable spirit. Our Security will be eyed clearly; under a will, resolute; and our Nation shall carry forth a strong message to all that would seek to do us harm. But our everlasting American spirit is promote Justice in our relationships; cultivate peace and harmony; and to seek out prosperous alliances iron bound in fairness.

[The present & future agenda]
Within the boundaries of this great Nation, lie incalculable resources and an innovative spirit yet untapped. America’s necessity always breeds American innovation. It runs in the blood of all of us. That is why in our present environmental and energy confinements there are opportunities to grow beyond the dogmas of the past, which lack the ability to confront the stormy present. That is why we will beat back our future’s most perilous foe, that of economic instability from scant energy sources, before the year 2020. Hindsight will see this day, this moment, as the point where America decided on the best course to free ourselves from a five-score dependence on fossil fuels. But it is that greatest resource of all, our ingenuity in the face of greatest peril, which will win the day.

We will also forge a new path to make it possible for all Americans to survive in the worst of unforeseen circumstances: that of ill health and debilitating hospital stays. Our government has often succeeded in giving a hand to those less fortunate in the worst of times. To create jobs; to revitalize the markets; to make a New Deal for Americans. It is time to do the same for the sick and unable to pay their medical bills. As we are all too aware, our personal health is at the foundation of our economic vitality. Nearly 20% of our economy is tied to deterioration of health. But with this enormous price, one-fifth of America cannot continue to achieve greater prosperity. It is vital that we address this shortcoming before my first term is out. Achieve a balanced solution that gives the best care at the lowest possible cost. And utilize again the best minds and opportunities to achieve universal healthcare in America.

More measures will be taken to secure our Nation’s future. We will not lock out those who desire access to the promise and prosperity of America, but we will not allow foreign passage to make a mockery of our laws. We will forcefully hold our sovereignty by the standards laid in the Constitution of the United States of America. We will hold clear and open discussions about the legitimate right to seek legal asylum in this great nation and remedy those that are here all ready under inauspicious terms.

We will reinvest in our educational systems; build better, and up-to-date transit systems; and make fair the tax laws and legal precedents of America, for all Americans. Yes we can reach for the stars and fill our breadbaskets. We can reconstitute an age of volunteerism, building infrastructure and homes and levies so they will not break. We shall make a promise to assist those in need and ask only they put their best foot forward. We can and shall help our Veterans who toiled bravely thousands of miles from their homes so that our streets and towns can remain prosperous and free.

[The greatness of America harnessed again]
We can do this all with the humble sacrifice and the forceful temerity that bore our Forefathers so well in their most trying times. It is the nature and depth of their sacrifice that brought us to this auspicious moment as the greatest Nation on the face of this Earth. A Nation that shall not perish with the undoubted sacrifices made by those that properly ask what they can do for this country in continuing to make it a Nation for the People, by the People and of the People.

God Bless America!

Ideas from Kennedy, FDR, Lincoln and Washington are included in the passages. Apologies for my butchering of them...