Friday, June 27, 2008
A few years back I figured out how badly the stock market would have to perform for 2000-2010 to be the worst 10 years on record for the American stock market. At that time, it didn't have to do particularly well to avoid making the record books. With the market's recent downswing, the possibility has become much more likely. We're almost exactly 1.75 years from the 10 year anniversary all time high of the S&P 500 index, 1527.46 on March 24, 2000. Today the S&P 500 is around 1282. To avoid being the worst 10 year span, the S&P needs to stand at 1715 in 21 months. That's a gain of 33.8% and an annualized gain of 18.1%. Steven Pearlstein seems to think we may be headed for the record books, judging based on the headline, "This Recession, It's Just Beginning," of his WaPo column.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Epic. I almost died three times but I’d do it again.-- An anonymous racer in Primal Quest Montana commenting on the Gallatin River after having been rescued from its raging, overflowing waters. The river was so high that race organizers decided to cancel the Gallatin section midday and to truck the racers who hadn't completed the section to its end. Based on that experience, the organizers also canceled the 70 mile kayaking of the Yellowstone River, which is also flooding. The race's nearly 600 mile long course is currently being run, biked, swam, climbed, etc. over a big chunk of southwestern Montana. The leading teams are performing shockingly well, fundamentally outclassing the bottom two thirds of the pack, which I find truly amazing because I suspect anyone who would pay $12,500 to race under their own power for 600 miles is a superlative athlete. That the leading teams seem to completing the course twice as fast as the other teams is astonishing. I really don't have much respect for the physical abilities of the players in many of the widely-viewed sports. I really don't see much athleticism demonstrated in swinging a stick at a sphere and standing around in a grassy field for quarters of an hour at a time. These folks, I respect. I've hiked short sections (at most 14 miles at a time) of the course they're following and I was really tired afterward. I've kayaked the Yellowstone, which is tamer than the Gallatin, and I was scared. They're good and they're crazy.
Monday, June 23, 2008
The PSC says homeowners and businesses should do all they can now to insulate their homes and offices.-- The Montana Public Service Commission attempting to get out the word that natural gas heating expenses will be "significantly higher" this winter than last.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
It is hard for me to find the words to express what a massive, fraudulent, pathetic excuse for an energy policy this is... This from a president who for six years resisted any pressure on Detroit to seriously improve mileage standards on its gas guzzlers; this from a president who’s done nothing to encourage conservation... This deadline is from a president who hasn’t lifted a finger to broker passage of legislation that has been stuck in Congress for a year, which could actually impact America’s energy profile right now — unlike offshore oil that would take years to flow — and create good tech jobs to boot.--Thomas Friedman in the NYT regarding President Bush's demand that Congress allow drilling offshore and in ANWR by July 4.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Even if tomorrow we opened up every square mile of the outer Continental Shelf to offshore rigs, even if we drilled the entire state of Alaska and pulled new refineries out of thin air, the impact on gas prices would be minimal and delayed at best.--Bryan Walsh for Time magazine explaining why President Bush's proposal to open drilling on the continental shelf and in ANWR to lower gas prices is somewhat disingenuous. Interestingly, Bush's father approved one of those bans.
Friday, June 13, 2008
He made some poor choices last night.-- Bozeman Police Sergent Colton Schumacher referring to a local man who is charged with speeding, driving under the influence, eluding officers, failing to obey a traffic control device, reckless driving, obstructing a peace officer and felony theft after stealing a car, driving 80 in a 25 MPH zone, and leading police on a three hour chase.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
It would not be an exaggeration to say that the Democrats’ nomination of Obama as their candidate for president has done more to improve America’s image abroad — an image dented by the Iraq war, President Bush’s invocation of a post-9/11 “crusade,” Abu Ghraib, Guantánamo Bay and the xenophobic opposition to Dubai Ports World managing U.S. harbors — than the entire Bush public diplomacy effort for seven years.--Thomas Friedman in a recent editorial.
Monday, June 02, 2008
There is no shame in recognizing your failings or getting help if you need it. The tragedy comes when we fail to take responsibility for our weaknesses and surrender to them.-- President G. W. Bush speaking the the graduating class at Furman University.