Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs is looking at returning the $5b in TARP money that they received late last year. Street Insider has the news.

"Goldman also has the capital to pay back TARP, with a balance sheet with about $100 billion in available cash."

So tell me... If GS has $100b what is it that required our $5b so urgently. Why is it that just the threat of lost bonuses has sparked a hasty return? One wonders if it was necessary or wise to give away free money in a hurry.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Thoughts on Eminent Domain

What the State can do to the richest of us at considerable expense, the State can do to the poorest of us at no expense. Where the poorest among us cannot afford to fight the state the rest of us are obligated to do so.

The guys over at fr33agents have some things to say on the issue.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More Good News for the Half-Dozen or so Appointees that Actually Work for the Obama Admin.

Federal Agents raided the former office of Vivek Kundra (the President's appointee for Chief Information Officer) this week as part of an investigation into corruption. As of yet Kundra is not a target of the investigation.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

And Another One Gone

Chas Freeman has withdrawn from his nomination as the Chairman of the National Intelligence Council when it came to light that he had significant ties to the Saudi and Chinese oil industries.

In related news we've acquired a document outlining the complex process by which the Obama admin. selects and vets candidates for presidential appointment.

Step 1. They divide up a 10 acre plot into one foot square parcels.

Step 2. Take a complete list of all current members of the Democratic party plus 50 wild card spots. Place one picture of one person on the list in each of the one foot squares.

Step 3. A herd of donkeys is released into the field and allowed to graze for the day

Step 4. Whoever the donkeys shit on, 'congratulations Mr./Ms. Political Appointee welcome to the team.'

Friday, March 06, 2009

Obama the Dow Killer

Michael Boskin from the Stanford University Econ. Dept. takes on the agenda from the Obama admin. for what it is. A giant lie.

More Losses for O on the Nomination Front

CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta backed out of consideration for the post of Surgeon General this week. Though not yet formally nominated Gupta was widely understood to be the choice for the post within the Obama administration. Gupta sited family related priorities as his reason for withdrawing from consideration. I haven't heard yet if there are any rumors surfacing as to any deeper issues or anything relating to his vetting process. It may be that with a new baby on the way he simply doesn't want to uproot things with his family. The larger issue is that losing nominees is becoming the mark of the Obama presidency.

In related news Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner's expected pick for his Deputy has withdrawn her name from consideration as well. Annette Nazareth a prominent former high level staffer at the SEC, has withdrawn for personal reasons as well. There's no indication that policy disputes or vetting related issues are involved in these 'personal reasons'.

With so many high level positions sitting vacant and a seemingly non-stop stream of legal and tax issues for those that have been chosen, its hard to imagine how things are getting done. There is a concern floating around that the Obama admin. is making sweeping policy decision in areas like the economy and health care in a time when it seems impossible for them to have the kind of advice structure in place to truly examine the potential risks in their strategy. The Bush admin. took heat repeatedly for a cowboy-like shoot-from-the-hip policy mentality but nothing they did comes close the wild swings in policy coming out of this admin. and it boggles the mind to think that there really aren't very many experts on board yet. And it's not just the blogosphere that notices. A great many people on Wall Street are sitting up and taking note of the fact that while the credit window is wide open there doesn't seem to be anybody minding the store.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Health Status

Ronald Bailey over at Reason takes a look at an innovative new idea for the free market to provide all the the things that people want from health insurance. Portability, affordability, universality and choice. All while supporting a market based structure to maintain the quality of health-care in America. I think as usual the market deserves this chance before we throw in the towel and settle for the kind of health care only the post office and the DMV could provide.