Friday, September 28, 2012

- Arm The Populace, And Seal The Border

The title of this post was the advice offered to PJ O'Rourke by a young US Army captain from Texas on how to best handle the situation in Mogadishu. It seems to me the same advice might apply to certain portions of Chicago.

"I never kill before but if I had my.... if I had a gun in my possession" ... Thank god for that across the board gun ban in Chicago huh?

I feel safer already.

- Ann Coulter Doing What She Does Best

This is tough to watch because it involves listening to those idiots from the view. But as always Ann Coulter raises a very interesting issue, and it's particularly interesting to see how the liberal women are totally unable to counter it with the standard leftist palaver about 'knowing how people feel'.

Ann has to shout over them a little (what do you expect) but I think she makes an excellent point.

- Some Wall Street Career Advice

I'm hiring. So in addition to talking to placement agents, a few weeks ago I put an Ad out on Bloomberg jobs - mainly because it's free. Turns out it's probably worth what you pay for it. The vast majority of the people who have come in from the Ad are completely unqualified. It's unfiltered so that's what I expected, but I didn't imagine that the applicants would turn out to be as bad as they actually have. They're so bad in fact that I think a little unsolicited career advice for the Wall Street labor pool is probably worth writing.

Here then is some advice about how to avoid at least a couple of the mistakes that others (far too many others) have made with regard to advancing your career on Wall Street.

1. Based purely on the fact that there are a lot of people who want to do it but very few who actually do, you have to assume that managing money is harder than it looks. If you're working in the back office someplace, that means that you probably can't do it. If you think this is incorrect and that managing money is actually an easy thing if you can just get past the guards at the palace gate, then you are absolutely not qualified to do it. I say this from the perspective of a guy who started his career in research not trading, and has made the transition you're thinking about.

The ratio of successful money managers to non decision making staff is probably 10,000 to 1. And while a Managing Director job in charge of Swaps settlement at a large bank isn't very glamorous, it still pays about 900K per year. Set your goals accordingly.

2. If you really believe that you're that one very rare person who can make the transition to a decision making role, then convince the people you're working with now. If the people who know you won't take a flier on you then don't expect me to. Come back to me in two years with a profitable track record and I'll treat you like a serious contender. But without that profitable track record (and that means showing me evidence of it, the more verifiable the better) I can't risk anything on you.

3. About that track record. I talk to a dozen geniuses a week who are doing things similar to what you are. This gives me a unique perspective on what the markets can and cannot yield in terms of alpha. So please don't think you can show me a falsified data set as your returns and 'fool me' with it. Connecting market based logic and reason with the results it produces is basically my whole job now. There is no BS'ing your way into a role like this one.

4. As a hiring manager looking to place senior staff, your passion means absolutely nothing to me. That may have helped you get your first internship, but at this point it's assumed.

This is Wall Street - work address of the smartest most self motivated people in the world. 100% of the people you're competing with for this job are geniuses (at one of my previous employers even the girl answering the phone had an IQ of 150). So your "dedication to delivering excellence" sounds to me like something a worthless politician would say. Show me proof - real numbers. That's really the only thing that's going to convince me of anything. Without them, see suggestion 1.

5. Just because you were good trading market X before it dried up doesn't mean you'll be good in Y market now. The world is more than a bunch of correlated data streams. On a related theme, options are not your salvation. An illiquid market gives you an advantage as a flow trader at a bank, but we're a hedge fund. There is no flow. We only eat what we kill and there won't be any bailout coming when you blow up the firm because you didn't really understand what adding options to your strategy would do to your risk profile.

6. A high Sharpe ratio isn't necessarily a good thing. If you're as smart as you think you are, then you should already know why.

I know the odds of this getting to the actual people who are sending me their resume's is very small. But many of the readers of this blog are financial industry professionals, so I figure - adding this to our community dialog can only help me and others in my position. In truth, these are only a few of the common mistakes, and they are almost all a product of people who either think much more of themselves than others do, or that are acting out of desperation and are therefore willing to do irrational things.

These are just a few items. I have to stop now because I have to interview someone. I may add the others later in the comments.

- What Happened To Virtue

A better than average guest post from ZeroHedge:

In the midst of the Great Depression, Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon famously advised President Hoover to “liquidate labor, liquidate stocks, liquidate farmers, liquidate real estate” instead of propping each industry up with tax dollars. This liquidation doctrine would “purge the rottenness out of the system” and make certain that “people will work harder” and “live a more moral life.” Contrary to popular belief, Hoover did not take Mellon’s advice and went forth with his own version of the New Deal that gave relief to farmers and supported wage rates in certain industries. These efforts, which were exacerbated under the presidency of Franklin Roosevelt, effectively prevented the market from clearing. The boom of the late 1920s that was driven by the Federal Reserve’s monetary inflation was not allowed to bust. Instead of liquidating the debt and allowing the economy to reach a sound footing, both the Hoover and Roosevelt administrations attempted to manage it back to health. The result was the longest period of unemployment ever recorded in American history.

This is actually what I think of when Obama talks about a "new economic patriotism." He believes it's patriotic for people like me to stop complaining as he takes what he likes from us. He takes his gun, puts it to our heads, demands our labor and our wealth, and then expects us to thank him for doing what he likes to us with or without our consent. He thinks consensus defines virtue. So if your riot involves enough people, it must be in the right.

That's not any vision of America that I could ever be proud of.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Hey Watch This...

The LookingSpoon

- Obama Has Already Won The Debate

Ikaika and I have already started talking about it in the comments section, but I wanted to say something about the debates.

First of all, the Vice Presidential debate is absolute must see TV. Expect to see Joe Biden perform the verbal equivalent perverted hand gestures, and maybe the gestures themselves. Only a fool would forget to Tivo this classic. Imagine it as Milton Friedman vs. Captain Kangaroo. Now on to the real discussion.

The debates are all being hosted by people who are at the moment, busy flying cover for the Obama administration. This means that all the questions will be of the 'When do you expect to stop beating your wife governor Romney" variety. Even the questions to Obama will be about how he feels about governor Romney [allegedly] still beating his wife. There will be absolutely no discussion of any kind, of the record of the Obama administration in either domestic of foreign policy.

I expect the biggest loser of the debates to be George W. Bush, who as we know was responsible for everything bad that's ever happened since the fall of Constantinople. But that won't excuse Mitt Romney from complicity either - at least not as much as the moderator and the reviewing press corps will be concerned. By the time it's over I expect the media to be claiming that he is actually more responsible for the federal deficit than the man who has run the government for the last three plus years.

In the Republican debates Mitt was a leader, and could get by on not making forced errors. It's just my opinion of course, but I don't think that will do it this time. I think he needs to be as fast on his feet as Newt or John Sununu and offer the same confrontational defense of conservative principles that they would. Without that, the press will shape the discussion in a way that shows him in the worst possible light.

And even if he makes Obama cry; even if Obama is reduced to profanity and calling Romney a no good racist cracker; Even if Obama quotes Karl Marx, Mao Tse Tung and Che Guevara in every answer; even if he says that he'd offer a fiscal plan right now but the American people would be too stupid to understand it. Even if he spends the whole time practicing his golf swing and flirting with Chris Mathews while Valerie Jarrett and Richard Trumpka field his answers for him; even if he stand on stage, zips open his fly, and relieves himself on Romney's shoes - the press will call this a victory for him.

The entire range of possible outcomes for the presidential debates run from a complete Obama blowout, to a "very nearly a tie, with Obama squeaking out a victory". That's it. When normalized for the press's version of affirmative action, President Obama has already won the debates and the most Romney can hope for is a tie. They will defend this position to the death because it's really a defense of themselves. They believe that America is too stupid to run their own lives and they view the Obama administration as " the smartest people" taking over. They view themselves as a central part of that group and will therefore be totally unable to be impartial.

If that concept isn't an indictment of the major media, then I don't know what is.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


This is kind of interesting. It's an attempt to negate the effect that alleged 'liberal bias' in the form of oversampling of Democrats is having on the polls. What comes out of it matches my intuition about the election outcome much more accurately than what the drones in the media have been chanting about:

UnSkewed Polling Data
Poll Date Sample MoE Obama(D) Romney(R) Spread
UnSkewed Avg. 9/4 - 9/20 -- -- 44.0 51.8 Romney +7.8
Reason/Rupe 9/13 - 9/17 787 LV 4.3 45.0 52.0 Romney +7
Reuters/Ipsos 9/12 - 9/20 1437 LV 2.9 44.0 54.0 Romney +10
NBC News/WSJ 9/12 - 9/16 736 LV 3.6 44.0 51.0 Romney +7
Monmouth Univ. 9/13 - 9/16 1344 LV 2.5 45.0 50.0 Romney +5
QStarNews 9/10 - 9/15 2075 3.0 44.0 55.0 Romney +11
NY Times/CBS News 9/8 - 9/12 1162 LV 3.0 44.0 51.0 Romney +7
Democracy Corps 9/8 - 9/12 1000 LV 3.1 43.0 52.0 Romney +8
Fox News 9/9 - 9/11 1056 LV 3.0 45.0 48.0 Romney +3
Wash. Post/ABC News 9/7 - 9/9 826 LV 4.0 45.0 52.0 Romney +7
CNN/ORC 9/7 - 9/9 875 RV 3.5 45.0 53.0 Romney +8
IBD/CSM/TIPP 9/4 - 9/9 808 RV 3.5 41.0 50.0 Romney +9
ARG 9/4 - 9/6 1200 LV 3.0 43.0 53.0 Romney +10
I think this addresses the "What the F*** are those people thinking!?" question. The answer is, they aren't thinking it at all.

There are substantial notes about the process and reasons for it linked at the site. I recommend you go take a look.

Monday, September 24, 2012

- Some Excellent Poll Analysis

Why Isn’t Romney Up By Ten Points?

To be fair, conservatives exhibiting less hysteria do remain puzzled by the polls. After all, the Obama presidency has been a trainwreck of Carter-esque magnitude. Almost every historical predictor shows that Romney should have a sizeable lead: Unemployment is high, consumer confidence is low, two-thirds of voters think the country is on the wrong track, more believe we’re worse off now than we were four years ago, household income has plummeted, gas prices are hovering near record highs, and most voters perceive America to be in decline.

Furthermore, data show that Obama has lost support among several key segments of the electorate. He won 43 percent of the white vote in 2008, but appears to be drawing 4–6 points less today. He’s also lost support among middle class voters (see Katrina’s post below), Catholics, and Jews. Moreover, a decline in voter enthusiasm among blacks, Hispanics, and young voters suggests turnout for these groups will fall below 2008 levels (Jay Cost has noted that if black turnout alone been at typical levels in 2008, Obama would have lost Ohio and Florida). Follow the link.

- "I'll Get The Boys!"

There is an element of give and take when it comes to favors on Wall Street. The products we buy and sell aren't terribly different in any meaningful way than the products that any of our competitors buy or sell. So much of the industry is dependent upon relationships. And the give and take of small favors lends itself to that. Still - there are good guys who you know you can call, and other guys who are not so good.

I've always been thrilled when someone asked me to do them a favor. Not because I'm Machiavellian and knew that it meant that they now 'owe me too'. Quite the contrary. I got a kick out of it because it makes me feel like I'm helping out a friend. I'm doing something that is relatively low cost for me, while achieving something which might have a great impact on someone else's life. It feels good to help people out. the more it helps them, the better it feels.

I get the impression Mitt Romney knows exactly what I mean:

Gillespie recalled how Romney called her every night, for 10 straight nights, when her father was in a coma after heart surgery.

And she told one more story. The day she moved to Massachusetts, the moving company didn’t get all her furniture inside the house. The governor called and asked her how things were going. She said furniture was still on the driveway.

“I’ll get the boys,” Romney told her.

At 9 p.m., Romney and his sons moved the furniture into the house.

The thing is, "the boys" were probably thrilled to do it. They all know that helping someone out is one of the best feelings in the world. All the Romney's get that.

I linked the NRO comment because that's where I stole it. Please click through to get to the original story.

- Paging Mad Max...

You all remember the city of Camden don't you? Its the most dangerous city in the country, and is actually a suburb of Philadelphia in the same way that Newark is a suburb of NY. The statistics after several decades of deeply entrenched family shattering liberalism, read like a demographer's nightmare of dysfunction:

...170 drug markets operating in this city of 77,000...

...more than 700 people on parole and 600 registered sex offenders... ...53 Murders per 100,000 people...

...As of Friday, there had been 47 murders this year...

...Since late August, two children, ages 2 and 6, have been killed, allegedly by people authorities believe were high on PCP... (one was a 2 year old boy who was decapitated by his own mother)

Well here's the sauce for the goose. They're firing their police force.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

- There's A Story In There Somewhere...

Media Having Trouble Finding Right Angle On Obama's Double-Homicide

WASHINGTON—More than a week after President Barack Obama's cold-blooded killing of a local couple, members of the American news media admitted Tuesday that they were still trying to find the best angle for covering the gruesome crime.

"I know there's a story in there somewhere," said Newsweek editor Jon Meacham, referring to Obama's home invasion and execution-style slaying of Jeff and Sue Finowicz on Apr. 8. "Right now though, it's probably best to just sit back and wait for more information to come in. After all, the only thing we know for sure is that our president senselessly murdered two unsuspecting Americans without emotion or hesitation."

Added Meacham, "It's not so cut and dried."

In the meantime, I heard John Harwood from CNBC do his level best on Friday to portray the fact that Mitt Romney gave 1/3 of his income to charity, as a negative. Keep in mind, this isn't something Mitt did as a one off to get political capital for his generosity, it's something he's done every year for decades and was reluctant to take any credit for.

How in the world did we arrive at a moment when giving multiple millions of dollars to charity can be presented as a bad thing without the "journalist" being laughed out of his industry?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Thursday, September 20, 2012

- Re: Stuck On Stupid

The Analogy here is pulled from the comments of the last post. Think of the markets like Steve Martin in the drunk test above. Every time he does what the cop says, the cop comes up with some other ridiculous thing he must do to 'prove' he isn't really drunk (or in the markets case... broken). Always a new rule, a new mandate, and some new ridiculous politically appropriate goal that is unconnected from reality.

The only difference is that eventually the markets can't do everything. Maybe they stop tap dancing for a minute or drop an orange. When they do, the government proclaims it 'broken' and says that it's how we got all these problems in the first place.

And their answer to that, mysteriously enough, is always less liberty for the masses, and more power for them. Funny how that works.

- Still Stuck On 'Stupid"

Many of you are familiar with ParaPundit. Well yesterday, I was complaining about something or other in an email with our man Derb. It was something boring and tedious, and he was trying to politely straighten me out a little - as is his way. In his lucid response he referred me to a Parapundit Page.

This isn't it.

This is a separate page which I happened across when I was glancing around a little trying to avoid doing my real job.

One of the great mysteries of liberalism is how it manages to be so reliably wrong about everything. Liberal policies fail to achieve their stated goals FAR more than pure chance would dictate. And I think this might point to a reason - even if IQ isn't a direct cause.

When you have a failed decision making process, it becomes impossible to learn when to change your decision making process.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

- IOS6 First Impressions

My iphone is my first ever Apple product and I bought it reluctantly. So I wasn't looking forward to the IOS6 update, but I wanted Siri to read me turn by turn directions. So I bit the bullet and upgraded today, pretty much as soon as it became available.

After dealing with a more than a decade of Microsoft's operating system "Upgrades" on PC's where the whole purpose was only to hobble the user more effectively, and make them more dependent on Microsoft support services, the IOS6 upgrade is a real treat. All the things I never used and wanted to get rid of have magically disappeared on their own.

I've played a little with the other features and they seem to all function at least as well as they did before. Siri seems much faster and has longer arms. Best of all, unlike all of the PC OS "upgrades" I've coped with (the quotes really are necessary in Microsoft's case) this was totally free.

Apple may be making computers which are for girls and gay men, but they certainly seem to value their customers more highly than the boys in Redmond. And it's nice not to get kicked in the teeth by my technology provider, only to be told to "shut my idiot pie hole because it's for my own damned good" and they be charged extra for it too.

- I'm for Redistribution!

We knew this was the case of course, but here's the tape.

I'm having one of those 'down the rabbit hole' moments today. Forget the bias in the polls or the media. How is it that this guy is getting even 5% of the vote?

My sewing circle is disproportionately filled with economically literate people. I know of no one who understands how the economy works who supports Obama. The smartest people I know think he should be run out of Washington minutes ahead of a torch and pitchfork bearing mob. The most respected minds of our era think his economic ideas are warmed over nonsense from a bygone era, and yet... people still support him.

So I find myself asking... just who the hell are these idiots and don't they know anyone who understands how the world really works who can explain it to them? Do we really have 45% or so of the country who are so cognitively disabled? I never underestimate the stupid person and the depths of that stupidity, but I honestly thought the averages were a little higher than that.

I've always confessed that I'm in a real bubble in that respect. I've worked very hard to surround myself with people who are much more intelligent than average - mostly because I enjoy that. But now it's left me detached from the 'real' reality of America - that we are apparently a nation of dunces.

I still believe Romney wins... but I confess, this is much closer than I thought, and closer than I can understand the motivations for.

- Tax Cuts For Businesses

What do you want, high tax rates or high tax revenues? Choose... you can't have both. (I'm personally on record advocating the elimination of all corporate taxes.)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

- Brotherhood Of The Burning Flag

I wonder how many virgins this is good for:

One of the participants of the rally, Abdullah Ismail, passed away after he was taken to Mayo Hospital. Witnesses said he had complained of feeling unwell from the smoke from US flags burnt at the rally.

I'll bet the flag was secretly treated with a chemical which kills people who breathe the fumes. Those Jews can be pretty clever after all. Remember how many of them conveniently didn't show up for work when the Trade Center was dynamited by them, and the whole thing was blamed on poor innocent muslims.

The real story of course is that Pakistani's are demanding that we criminalize Blasphemy or lose our consulate. If the leadership of this country were even half men, we'd respond with artillery fire for the useless ingrates. But alas, there are campaign funds to raise, and 'a short game' to work on. And may Allah bring your handicap down to a reasonable level - imshallah.

(Just trying to get with the general theme of the country.)

- Re: Palestinians Have No Interest In Peace

US Republican presidential candidate filmed at fundraising dinner saying Palestinians "have no interest whatsoever in establishing peace," adding Iran would use nuclear capability to blackmail US.

There is a reason mother Jones didn't talk up this quote. To Jimmy Carter's dimwit grandson this looks like an indictment, but to the non "Jew Hating" world, this is a strong endorsement for Mitt's ability to see the world clearly.

Here comes your poll bounce Ikaika!

Jimmy Carters long standing antipathy to Israel (he ghost wrote speeches for Arafat you recall) is well known, and it's reasonable to believe that his grandson who is responsible for this latest 'leaked' video shares his beliefs. If he doesn't, he should simply say so. Until then though, I'm going to assume that he thinks this is inflammatory.

In my world (where we believe it would best serve world peace to build a 90 foot wall around Gaza and then fill it with water), this is not only not a big deal, it's evidence that Mitt can see the forest for the trees.

I salute Mitt Romney for saying out loud what generations of political hacks have obviously known but were either afraid to say, or hated the Jews too much to bother. It's a long way from demanding a return to the 67 borders at any rate.


- Tax Cuts For The Rich

- Dear Obama Supporters

You're all jacked up over the fact that Mitt Romney, in a leaked video from a fundraiser, said that those who are dependent on government and feel entitled to the labor and wealth of others are all Obama supporters. But Romney isn't backing off from his comment and there is a reason for that. It's true.

We on the right (who are paying far more than we're ever going to get from government) think of you as useless parasites. The worst of you contribute nothing but even the best of you contribute less than you take. That's not a recipe for earning respect. Thanks to one of the great weaknesses of democracy you'll always be able to do that to us. And whenever you put the government gun to our heads we'll hand over our hard earned wealth.

But you can't force us to take care of you - to pay for your food, your cell phone, your medical bills, and expect us to respect you too. We see you as being little more than government authorized thieves. And so long as you refuse to carry your own share of the load, at best we'll think of you as children. And what's more, you'll deserve that scorn.

That I think is the real source of your horror. You're shocked and outraged to learn that we don't respect you, and you're angry about that disrespect. But the real reason you're angry is because you know that you don't deserve our respect. You know exactly what you are. It's the truth in his words that's made you angry.

You think all this is about politics - about who wins and who loses, or who keeps power and loses it. But we don't see it that way. The choices you make cannot be sustained. Your leaders don't tell you that, but it's none the less true. And if you want to expect to keep any version of the comfortable lazy life you've learned to love while we pay your bills, then you had better start listening to us.

The lights have come up and the party is over. If you recognize that now then maybe we'll be able to keep giving you enough of what you've come to expect to keep away the worst of the DT's. But pretending all is well and that this can all go on forever isn't going to work anymore. So you had better start facing up to the problems that you know are there in spite of your leaders denials.

We will never respect you for acting like you do, but we are not monsters. We'll try as hard as we can to spare you the worst of the pain while we set things right. And when you're a dependent, that's really the most you can expect.

Monday, September 17, 2012

- Bailing Out The UAW

You have to sell a lot of Chevy Volts to make up for that!

You have to sell even more when GM loses $49,000 per volt it sells, but that's politics.

- Another Racist Against Obama

- The Idea Behind QE

Most of the people telling you what they think of QE are either talking up their financial book, or their political book. Either way, you aren't getting a realistic picture of what it means, so let me shed some light. The photo above says it all.

Imagine QE as Ben Bernanke bailing water out of a life boat. You'll get people on one side of the argument saying that we won't get anywhere by implementing QE. That's technically true, it doesn't actually move us forward and we don't know the long term consequences of expending energy doing it. But we do know the short term consequences of not doing it.

In the meantime you'll get people on the other side saying "the equity market is at record high's so all is well." No one reading this is dumb enough to believe that. QE may keep us from sinking, but after it's done we're still in the middle of the ocean. We have no food, no potable water, and no shelter. So we simply cannot stay where we are and believe all will be well. Bernanke knows (and has said) that QE will not be enough to solve our economic issues. He's right of course.

Meanwhile, Keynesians say we need much more deficit spending, but you don't get economic growth by paying people to do nothing. And economic growth is precisely what we need. That growth can only come from the private sector, but Obama and the Democrats have declared a kind of war on private industry. They think things would be more 'fair' if we keep the rich (in this analogy they would be 'the dry') from getting too far ahead (or drier) than everyone else. But that 'getting ahead' is the only growth available to us and should be the goal of everyone.

I think Bernanke is doing all he can - all he's allowed to do, to keep America from sinking over the objections of the Democrats. They think it would be better if we were all floating around in our life jackets equally. A shared poverty divided up by disinterested third parties in Washington who make all the relevant decisions. But they forget that there are sharks in the water.

So I support this round of QE, and I'll support the next one, and the one after that. There will be more I'm afraid, because even the Republicans won't be able to do what they must to our tax and economic policies to generate REAL growth. But since they're the only ones who recognize the actual problem (let alone are taking it seriously) there is little doubt who's position to back.

- How Republics Fall

The closeness of mainstream journalists to President Obama has debauched their integrity. Some of them give the White House veto authority over their stories. Others look to be rewarded with plum jobs or stimulus-funded ads. This abasement before power presages a return to a time when political writers, among them Swift and Defoe, were the professed protégés of statesmen and relied on Whig or Tory patronage for their bread; it also leaves the country vulnerable to the distortions of ostensibly neutral journalists who are too fervently committed to the leader to tell the truth about him.

It's the same old question for us. Do they see the harm they do? In the case of the press, I truly believe the answer is no. They are the hapless empty headed followers - the useful idiots - in thrall to the idea of Obama as a symbol. But that symbol has little connection to the realities of living in the Obama age.

It will be a decade or so before they wake up and see what they've done... or hopefully... almost did.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

- Slug A Journalist For Freedom

I think it might be a worthwhile movement - slug a journalist for freedom. Since our liberal journalists have proven to be more liberal than journalist, maybe we really should do that very thing.

If there is one thing a liberal responds to it's threats of violence. They're perfectly happy to knuckle under to any bully who threatens them personally, and will only attack those they believe will never offer violence. Take a look at the difference between the way they treat Muslims and the way they treat Christians. Christians don't riot and murder - so they are berated and hounded to the end of the earth. Muslims don't stand for freedom of speech, so the American journalists treat them with nothing but respect.

So I think this is a plan. Anytime you're somewhere public and you hear someone say they have something to do with the publication of (what we still laughingly call) news, you should just haul off and belt them in the mouth. Make every journalist in the country afraid to say what they do out loud. And while it's true that indiscriminately punching journalists may mean that a few conservatives get hit for no good reason, I still think we can feel safe in going with the odds. When you explain it afterward to that all too rare conservative with the facial bruise, I'm sure they'll understand.

You'll be striking a blow for freedom. You'll be the right arm of liberty - diminishing the effect of what Mark Steyn accurately calls "the court eunuchs" who are doing their best to see this country ruined. It won't help any political cause specifically, but it will let journalists know that America is on to them. And in the end that can only be a good thing.

At least, this is what I'm going to tell the court at my bail hearing if I see anyone I know from Reuters this week.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

- Another Liberal Trope Disproved

Not too long ago, Jonah Goldberg published a book about all the empty cliche's that liberals pass off as actually thinking. The one he mentioned in all the interviews was "I disagree with what you say but will defend to the death you're right to say it." But Jonah knew it was all complete bull and said so. Liberals don't have the courage for that sort of thing - as we all know. They only spout that stuff to sound noble. But when it comes to stepping up and backing their cliche with action, they suddenly have other priorities.

Here is the proof. Rather than believing that radical Muslims the world over are storming our embassies and consulates because of the way America has portrayed itself as weak for the last few years, America's liberals instead are choosing to believe that it's all the fault of some christian filmmaker. So are they willing to defend to the death his right to say what he likes even though they disagree with it?

Of course not. Instead they've hauled him off to be interrogated by federal officials and probably to be intimidated into shutting up in order to prevent embarrassment for an at risk presidency.

You liberals really are reprehensible cowardly pieces of $4it. Frankly I'm disgusted with you. I'm ashamed to share the name American with such a worthless disgusting mob. And you people from the liberal press are the worst of the bunch. I'm truly disgusted.


Here's a Canadian guy saying the same basic thing:

I understand that America has decayed from a land of laws to a land of legalisms but the position that no one at State can say a word about Benghazi because there’s now an FBI investigation, and so it’s a sub judice police matter, and Sgt Friday has flown out with an extra long roll of yellow “DO NOT CROSS” tape and strung it round the smoking ruins of the US consulate and the “safe house” is stark staring nuts.

This is a security fiasco and a strategic debacle for the foreign policy of the United States, not a liquor store hold-up. What is wrong even with the bland, compliant, desiccated, over-credentialed, pansified, groupthink poodles of the press corps that they don’t hoot and jeer at Victoria Nuland? I know why she’s doing it; I know why Hillary Clinton is desperately trying to suggest that some movie trailer on YouTube is the reason that a mob in Benghazi knows the location of the US Ambassador’s safe house. But why would anybody else even pretend to take this stuff seriously? Elderly Soviet propagandists must be wondering why they wasted their time jamming radio transmitters and smashing printing presses when they could just have sent everyone to Columbia Journalism School.

We all need to remember this moment. It's the moment when the free press of America decide that they didn't really feel the need to be free - so long as the Democrat President got reelected.

- Another Triumphant Obama Moment

You know things are REALLY bad when Mark Steyn is too depressing to be funny:

So, on a highly symbolic date, mobs storm American diplomatic facilities and drag the corpse of a U.S. ambassador through the streets. Then the president flies to Vegas for a fundraiser. No, no, a novelist would say; that’s too pat, too neat in its symbolic contrast. Make it Cleveland, or Des Moines.

The president is surrounded by delirious fanbois and fangurls screaming “We love you,” too drunk on his celebrity to understand this is the first photo-op in the aftermath of a national humiliation. No, no, a filmmaker would say; too crass, too blunt. Make them sober, middle-aged midwesterners, shocked at first, but then quiet and respectful.

The president is too lazy and cocksure to have learned any prepared remarks or mastered the appropriate tone, notwithstanding that a government that spends more money than any government in the history of the planet has ever spent can surely provide him with both a speechwriting team and a quiet corner on his private wide-bodied jet to consider what might be fitting for the occasion. So instead he sloughs off the words, bloodless and unfelt: “And obviously our hearts are broken . . . ” Yeah, it’s totally obvious.

And he’s even more drunk on his celebrity than the fanbois, so in his slapdashery he winds up comparing the sacrifice of a diplomat lynched by a pack of savages with the enthusiasm of his own campaign bobbysoxers. No, no, says the Broadway director; that’s too crude, too ham-fisted. How about the crowd is cheering and distracted, but he’s the president, he understands the gravity of the hour, and he’s the greatest orator of his generation, so he’s thought about what he’s going to say, and it takes a few moments but his words are so moving that they still the cheers of the fanbois, and at the end there’s complete silence and a few muffled sobs, and even in party-town they understand the sacrifice and loss of their compatriots on the other side of the world.

But no, that would be an utterly fantastical America. In the real America, the president is too busy to attend the security briefing on the morning after a national debacle, but he does have time to do Letterman and appear on a hip-hop radio show hosted by “The Pimp with a Limp.” In the real State Department, the U.S. embassy in Cairo is guarded by Marines with no ammunition, but they do enjoy the soft-power muscle of a Foreign Service officer, one Lloyd Schwartz, tweeting frenziedly into cyberspace (including a whole chain directed at my own Twitter handle, for some reason) about how America deplores insensitive people who are so insensitively insensitive that they don’t respectfully respect all religions equally respectfully and sensitively, even as the raging mob is pouring through the gates.

Right now in the halls of the American news media where popular opinions are formed, gaggles of our self appointed intellectual elite are trying to formulate ways to draw a logical connection between this smoking hole of an international catastrophe and the intolerance of the right. That we're willing to delude ourselves in such an obvious way is our real national disgrace.

Obama and his agenda have failed at EVERYTHING. But the popular press will take any position no matter how visibly ridiculous to avoid saying so. We shouldn't be reelecting Obama, we should be burning him in effigy. His neglect of duty and wrongheaded policies are responsible for this. Even if the New York Times doesn't dare say so.

Obama is the penultimate man of the left. He is the Kardashian President. He is an empty suit, 7 iron in hand and smile on his face because in an age when pointless celebrity is considered the ultimate achievement, that's what wins elections. He is so consumed with his own ego and his own personal prospects that he can't appreciate how his actions have consequences for others. He's a vacuum. A hollow shell. The only thing he's truly successful at is passing off vapid excuses for his failed policies as resembling the truth closely enough for the blatant lies to be reprinted in the Times as facts.

The press will be passing this off as an Obama triumph somehow, but the rest of us will know better. This is really a moment of American weakness and defeat. And if we're seriously going to reelect Obama, we had better start getting used to them.

Right now, (as shown in the photo above) the black "Al Qaeda" flag is flying over the US Embassy in Tunisia. How exactly is this a good thing for America's public image? I'm sure the New York Times will be happy to explain it to you.

Friday, September 14, 2012

- Romney's Prejudice

- "Gas Price Hypocrisy"

I don't know the person responsible for this video, but tell your Democrat friends, "Oh how soon you forget..."

When you think of the "Pretzel Logic" of the Left and especially that of the current administration, you need not strain your brain to wonder why we are in trouble and nothing has been done to right the ship.

In other news - While we witness the media's complicit insistence that the death of Americans on foreign soil was only an unfortunate consequence of a "protest" getting out of hand (and mostly Romney's Fault! if you ask the media), I expected to see more news from the Alphabet Networks regarding the incident. Instead, I was treated to why a 30 year old college student that needs taxpayer funded contraceptives has become a "rising star" with a "pressing issue" in the Democrat Party. Yes that was the center-piece of Brian Williams Rock Center Report yesterday.
Someone wake me from this nightmare...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

- QE3, QE4, QE4S, and QE5

Every once in a while zerohedge still has a laughable moment.

- Teacher Contract Negotiations

Ex-professor pleads guilty to shooting dead three colleagues and wounding three more during meeting 'as she was furious she had been denied tenure.'

The next step after rhyming "Hey Hey, Ho Ho..."

...About That Foreign Policy

A somewhat astute scholar of US military history explained to me that he is voting for Hussein because of his successful Foreign Policy. The scholar in question also revealed to me that he always votes democrat anyway, but he felt (without solicitation) that he needed to qualify his conclusion towards election day.
While he agrees that the economy is utterly horrendous and posssibly irrecoverable if we continue this direction, his tipping point was that Romney and Ryan are "War Hawks" and that Romney has already insulted Russia and China. He then said that Romney obviously would start an "unwinnable" war with Iran.
I asked him if he thought there was any "merit" to Condoleeza Rice's speech where she remarked about our obvious lack of foreign policy:
He contended that Condi's words and actions are nullified because of the Iraq War.
It is a duplicitous response from the left, as he believed that Afghanistan was just and Iraq was specious.
However - it doesn't address foreign policy in tutto.
The Lynchpin of why he believes Hussein to be a Master of Foreign Policy:
  1. The death of bin Laden and other terror leaders during his watch
  2. Arab Spring
 The argument was that Hussein was able to insert the SEAL Team into Pakistan without escalating into international turmoil over extradition, invasion etc...
He also believed that the Arab Spring was the epitome of a perfected use of diplomacy. He also commended the appointment of Hillary Clinton to the Sec of State post. I contend that this was designed to neutralize any left-over Clinton venom rather than elevating an astute schoalr of US Foreign Policy. Hillary Clinton is possibly one of the worst Sec's of State in US History : in close company with Madeline Albright and Warren Christopher. I believe Hillary has been fed to the dogs by the administration as an insult to injury. She was a Lawyer, a first lady, and a Senator from New York. The First Lady part gives her a mere-sliver of credibility as a suitable Secretary of State. She has been embarrassed on the world stage, not only by her own lack of knowledge of History and Geo-Politics, but by her own Boss!
That discussion was a few weeks ago. This morning I sent him a note "highlighting" yesterday's events in our Arab Spring nations, as well as a brief history of the Hussein Foreign Policy.
We'll start with the Western Hemisphere:
Obama 'meddles' in Honduras -- and chooses the wrong side
Obama on the wrong-page with his Sec of State re: Columbia Free Trade and Mexico
Obama Alienates Canada And Mexico At Three Amigos
Obama’s Keystone Denial Prompts Canada to Look to China Sales
Brazil Stiffs Obama on Oil Deal, Exposing President's Incompetence
On to Asia:
Eighty Percent of U.S. Asia Policy Is Just Showing Up
Obama's Asia frustrations raise protectionist risks
Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Britain – 2012 edition
President Obama Causes Outrage with Reference to ‘Polish Death Camp’
Obama Chooses to Play Golf rather than attend Poland Funeral
Caught on open mike, Obama tells Medvedev he needs ‘space’ on missile defense
Israel / Midddle East:
Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Israel

I could go on, but I am too angry about the lack of response to the mobs storming the US embassy in Cairo and the Death of the US Ambassador in Lybia yesterday...
... Foreign Policy, Indeed!
Sultan Knish blog deserves to be read today:
Excerpt mine:
So, no we will not fight back after September 11. Nor will we fight back when our embassies are attacked. The good people running things will take stock of what we have done that could have caused this and apologize for it and remind us to feel good about being such good people who diplomatically apologize to others instead of bombing them from the sky. They will feel worse about a burnt Koran than about a dead American because they are sociopaths with no more understanding of right and wrong than the teleprompters who feed them their lines. All their morality is learned behavior and their teachers were liars, morons and lunatics who passed on their disease to the next generation.

Gingrich says,This is not just about Libya. You don’t get, simultaneously, attacks in Benghazi and Cairo, in Libya and Egypt on a purely local basis. And you don’t get them on 9/11, a day we’re already honoring terrorist attacks against the United States, without a fair amount of collusion and a fair amount of planning. I think you have to look at this in a larger context…. There’s a substantial faction, particularly in Benghazi, which was sending people to Iraq to kill Americans. There’s a substantial faction in Egypt which wants to defeat the United States and destroy Israel. That faction looks for opportunities to do things to hurt the United States and yesterday was the example of an attack that’s part of a very long war that we’re going to be at for a very long time.”

I just endured Hillary's mealy-mouthed apology that "a small group was responsible" for the attacks.
What an embarrassment!
Our man chess is correct: this is Obama-stein's Monster run-amok!
Gingrich for Sec of State?

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

- A Word On Polling

If you're like me (and if you're reading this I know you are) then you probably find the post convention polling results a little frustrating. So let me offer this one insight.

Obviously some of the polls are being intentionally skewed to make an Obama reelection seem inevitable and to dishearten conservatives. Those that do are the very same ones talked up most aggressively by the Obama public relations machines in the news departments of all the networks, and the print media.

But before you let that get you down, you should remember that even the most accurate of the polls are assuming that voter turnout will be similar in 2016 as it was in 2008 - or at least applying a bias toward that end to account for the high profile presidential advertising spending. And that means that in order for those polls to be accurate this year, you would have to assume that the conservative turnout will be the same as it was after 8 years of 'compassionate conservatism' and with John McCain as the flag bearer AND that the liberal turnout will be like it was during the peak 'hopey-changiness' of the Obama wave.

I find that kind of unlikely don't you?

- A Humble Prediction

If Mitt Romney is our next President, the dimwit media will turn on him like rabid dogs in an attempt to reestablish some credibility with the American people. Every cough will be reported as pneumonia, ever pause in his speech as a mental breakdown, and any actual political mis-step as the end of the Republic.

Many of them know that they've been too easy Obama, and rather than examining themselves and their motives, they will instead try to be 'tough' again, thinking this is what the people want.

When the ratings don't respond to their newly regained 'toughness', they will be utterly mystified. Some of the more intensely myopic might even blame the public themselves. And when it all washes out, it will mean the end of what we call the 'mainstream media', and may even result in some establishments like the New York Times going bankrupt.

So we have that to look forward to.

- The Fine Print

The more you look at the numbers the more unconscionable the Chicago Teacher's unions look. Horrible graduation rates. Only 6% of graduates go on to college. 79% of 8th graders not reading at an 8th grade level. Average income of all Chicagoans 49K, average teacher, 76K.

These people shouldn't just be fired, they should be jailed.

- Never Forget!

Monday, September 10, 2012

The Myth of the Clinton Economy

Whenever anyone outside of the Democrat party challenges the kool-aiders to a debate on Clintonomics, the end result is a tantrum from the left that it was Bush's fault since he lowered Clinton taxes - thus everything fell apart. So are they admitting that there was an inescapable bubble forming under Clinton via Greenspan? In truth, Clinton didn't understand economics, and he was not the Policy Wonk that the Democrats hold him out to be.

I previously examined one horrible aspect of Clinton's poor decisions in his selection of Arthur Levitt as the SEC Chair.
The contraction in the number of 6 and 7 figure earners from 1998 to present is a direct result of the Arthur Levitt's destruction of market function in favor of electronic interaction and regulatory expansion.
Yes - Bill Clinton did that! It also spawned High Frequency Trading.
Who picks up the Tax Revenue void in place of these earners? The Middle Class of course!

From ZH:

Today, Clinton still takes credit for Greenspan’s manipulated boom.  His supporters on the left love nothing more than to point at his presidency as vindication of the backwards theory that higher taxes equal more growth.  Clinton wasn’t a policy wonk; he was a politician who dipped into the Social Security trust fund to give an appearance of balancing the budget while the national debt still climbed higher.

Even Hussein alluded in his acceptance speech that the crisis was decades in the making. Do we skip the Clinton Decade? Nope - perhaps it was all Bubba's fault? Not entirely, but I always contend that Clinton tried to lead from the left in his first term and was handily throttled for it. The miserable failure of the Co-Presidency was artfully framed in the memorable TIME cover (The Incredible Shrinking President). Suddenly the Democrats lost their majority and Republicans took over the legislature. Clinton pretended to be "the great compromiser". Clinton succeeded at what he did best and that was blaming others for his own errors. His cabinet selections, SCOTUS appointments and policy decisions are still impacting the American Middle Class in a very negative way...

Hussein will attempt to model his second term like that of Bubba, complete with a Republican House (and possibly, Senate) to blame the failure of Bernanke or his policy decisions. But the Healthcare Law will immediately bite into America as early as January. If you think this economy is bad now, you ain't seen nothing yet. The ACA will most likely strike such an immediate blow to the middle class that the Great Depression will be completely forgotten in retrospect. I hate to predict gloom and doom, but the velocity of money doesn't lie nor does the escalation of food stamp and welfare recipients.

- The Occupied School System

Rahm Emanuael refused to give the Chicago teachers union their demand of a 19% increase in wages in the first year of their contract. He instead offered 3% in the first year and 2% each in the years following. In reaction to this 'abuse' by management, they've decided to go out on strike. The average teachers salary in Chicago is currently $76,000 per year.

This is the future in Obama's America. Soaring unemployment and the unions holding the government hostage for 19% increases per year. Not that something like that could ever be considered 'greedy' or anything.

Friday, September 7, 2012

- Obama's Idea Of Fairness

If you believe that it's the free market that 'got us in this position in the first place' as President Obama says, then I don't know where to begin. No... that's not true. I know exactly where to begin. I should begin by saying that apparently you're an imbecile. The free market has done more good for more people - poor people in particular, than any other economic system. And it's not like it's a close call or a matter of opinion. It has created more wealth and more social benefit than government centric systems by a nearly immeasurable order of magnitude.

The President would have you believe that it's 'excess profits' which have taken the wealth from the middle class. Even Paul Krugman would tell you that's idiotic, and that economics is not zero sum. But to the President, and the labor union hacks who taught him how the world works, that's exactly how it seems. But in spite of that, every single economics department in every university in the entire country will tell you that it isn't so - even the most liberal ones.

The President says a lot about fairness, but he doesn't really mean fairness. Certainly the companies trying to compete with Solyndra weren't treated fairly. Neither were the bond holders who Obama said had to wait their turn behind the union during the GM 'bailout', even though they had contracts which said otherwise. The company that wanted to build the keystone pipeline wasn't treated fairly either, nor were the workers they didn't hire. So when Obama says 'fair' it's not what he really means. What he really means is, that if you're a contributor of his or if you have a project which his supporters like for some political reason, then you'll get 'special' treatment, while everyone else get's the shaft.

For him and the people like him, the problem is 'profits'. But profits are not the evil remainder squeezed from the blood and sweat of the workers. Profit is the degree to which people want what you've done with your resources more than they want the original resources themselves. In effect, profit is a mark of the amount of social value you've added through your business. And it's the sum of everyone's profits which amounts to the increase in our living standard. Maybe your living standard increases because what used to cost you $10 now costs you $1. Or maybe it's because you used to make 50K and now you make 100K. Either way, your living standard rises as profits increase.

But for the President, that won't do. In his mind a profit is an evil thing only to be allowed in the absolute minimum. He thinks it's much more fair to let politics decide who gets what. He want's to avoid 'equality under the law' at all costs because that would deny him the power to reward who he likes and punish who he doesn't. It's preferential results he's after, and 'fairness' be damned. All his talk of fairness is nothing more than out and out lies.

And while we're on the subject of out and out lies, Wall Street no more caused the credit crisis than Lakehurst NJ caused the Hindenburg disaster.

The credit crisis happened because Congress insisted that it should. They mandated that bad loans be made to people of poor credit. They built fanny and freddie with no consequences to failure, which inflated the market. Don't blame Goldman Sachse for the credit blowup, blame ACORN and the community organizers who would protest on their doorstep if they didn't do the things that eventually led to the credit crunch.

- The Party Of Tolerance

- Charlie Brown's Teacher

Obama's convention speech... what to say. In fairness I didn't listen to it. I didn't feel I had to. He's been repeating the same empty catch phrases for 4 years, and based on the reviews it looks like this was just more of the same. "Fair Share", "Millionaires and Billionaires", blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. To me he started sounding like Charlie Brown's teacher in the middle of 2009.

The only question I ever have any more is, in what new way will this man insult my intelligence? Will he tell me I'm not responsible for my success? Will he call me a "bitter clinger"? Will he accuse me of not 'paying my fair share', 'exploiting the working classes', or 'discriminating' against illegal immigrants'? Maybe this will be the speech where he snatches the ball from his proxies and tell me that I'm going to 'put black people back in chains', or 'throw grandma out in the snow'. Or maybe it's one of those speeches where he explains that while he's actually being positive, it's his opponents who are practicing the politics of division. Please.

In fairness, I've gotten used to being insulted by the left. After the last 4 years who could have missed it? It's not like they've been particularly subtle about the contempt they hold for Americans or traditional American values. In that respect it's the OWS crowd that are the most honest people on the left. They come right out and say that they want to reinvent the world with themselves at the top and everyone else taking what they are awarded by their 'central committee' or whatever it is they call it. The rest of the left portrays it as an incremental process where they hope the small steps they request don't arouse any anger in the electorate. But they are all pushing toward the same endpoint.

So in my little bubble where everyone understands economics and the virtue of economic liberty, it's tough to understand what the appeal is of someone like Obama. He's either telling out and out lies, setting one group against another, or he's directly insulting people just like us. And his only truly honest moments are those incredibly repellant things he says when he goes off script. How can that be appealing? Who are those people who think a reprehensible world view like his promises a better future for America?

In the end, the Democrats are the party of government, which is to say that they are the party of 'force'. Government has only one tool to motivate people, and that's force. And while your average Democrat may not actually be a bully, they are certainly the lick spittle's who line up behind him. They want to be the people issuing the commands. They want to command the people at the bottom of the economic scale to live lives that they command, and they want the people at the top of the scale to pay the price they command. And if we allow them, there will be no aspect of our lives that they don't try to manage as they see fit.

I personally prefer a world where I'm 'asked' to do things. If the government wants to 'ask' me to pay more in taxes I have no objection - how could I? I may or may not pay it, depending on whether I think I'm getting value for my money. But I could never object to them asking. The problem is, they don't ask. They command. That's the worldview Obama wants to see implemented - one where he commands and the rest of us must obey or face our peril at the hands of an all powerful state.

When Toyota tries to sell me a car they don't command, they ask. When Del Monte wants to sell me Apple juice (or whatever) it's a polite request. No one puts a gun to my head and forces me to spend my hard earned wage in the free market. No one at least, until the government gets involved and the free market is no longer free. Then there are all sorts of commands. I "must buy" insurance. I 'must pay' for Sandra Fluke's condoms, or for some welfare queen's cell phone bill. I must 'save' the union jobs of a car company that when consumers were 'asked' to buy their crappy cars they said no. "Do as your told or face the lash" say the bureaucratic minions. That's the Obama vision of America. No thanks.

Honestly kids, it's time to grow up a little here. Obama has failed at everything he promised, and has done nothing but enrich his supporters at the expense of the taxpayer. He's happy to insult people like me, but the person he's really insulting is people like you. The people who believe that he knows how to do anything different than what he's done up to now, are the real fools in this equation. and you may not believe it, but you'd be better off 'on your own' than having this condescending know it all try to run your life. No matter how smart he may be, he doesn't know what you want for dinner, any better than you do.

Obama is very much an academic, and those who can't, teach. They aren't 'the smartest' among us, they are the people who never learned achieve any results. His first term demonstrates nothing if not that. Let him go back to the teacher's lounge where the damage he can do is minimized and let the grownups go back to running things. Then if he still sounds like Charlie Brown's teacher, no one will notice or care.


Dr. K seems to concur (and he had to listen to it):

Thursday, September 6, 2012

- Ban Corporate Profits

I don't get Peter Schiff. I know his heart is in the right place, but in my opinion he makes himself the fool to make his point. And what is it he wants to do for a living - does he want to be a Senator, or a TV star or something... what?

I mean, I can relate with his position. He's a finance guy who has an interest in politics and believes in liberty. I am too. But who dose he think he's persuading with this circus? Of course these idiot Democrats will agree to ban corporate profits, but it wasn't their idea so what does it prove? That they don't trust corporations? that they lack the introspection to know they're being had? Is any of this news to anyone?

I really just don't get it.

Anyway, here he is again.

- The Breakup

- "You Didn't Build That" Part: 291,348,573

- Who Is Slamming The Door?

I have a situation at work which I obviously can't be too specific about, but since it ties in to the vision for America that we're currently debating, I thought I'd beat around it's bush here for a minute.

I think most people who've worked closely with me in the past saw me as a pretty smart guy who was somewhat 'difficult' to manage. But I don't think anyone would have ever called me a devious or calculating person. For better or worse I've never been able to successfully pretend to like or respect a person who I didn't actually like or respect. You saw me coming a mile off, which many people would consider a good thing. But it was much less popular with the people I didn't really like or respect. And as a result of this transparency (at least in part), I've made enemies.

I don't think there is anyone out there nurturing a little shrine of hatred for me in their closet at home - I don't think any of it was ever that big a deal. Now that I've moved on I'm sure they've forgotten all about it. But it's really beyond debate that I had people out there who were working very hard, to the point of doing things that were hurting the profitability of their own business, simply to prevent me from achieving my goals. And it wasn't a question of differing visions for the business. They were doing it all out of a personal animosity. I'd hear tales of my name coming up in staff meetings and senior people reacting with an unexplained irrational fury at its mention. One person's hatred of me in particular, was a very public secret.

If you come from a background like mine which isn't from the 'anointed' classes, that's the kind of thing that can leave a mark. You end up feeling like the only way you can ever get ahead is if you do it over the objection of people who dislike you. If you lack the capacity to pretend to be someone you aren't, and you're convinced that some people will dislike you for that trait, then you begin to think that the only route to success is to find those people before they find you, and to isolate yourself from them. Put up some sort of wall between you and the people who will work to prevent your success.

In its most abbreviated form, this is how I've worked for most of the last 5 years. As much effort as I've put into the markets and the actual profit generating part of my job, I've put at least that much into determining who the political players were, determining who would have a problem with me, and trying to find a means to keep some political distance between us. And I'll be honest, it was a lot of work. I'm no good at corporate politics, so instead of focusing on the thing that I am objectively good at, I had to focus much of my energy and time on something that I'm not. But all of that has more or less come to an end for me now.

I've been asked to take on a more senior role in my firm - one that makes the most of the strengths that I've demonstrated. And instead of achieving this goal over the objection of others, I'm getting the enthusiastic support of both the CEO, and the Chairman-Founder of the firm. Both are looking to me as someone who can use my skills and energy to make them more successful, and are only interested in making it as easy as possible for me to do so. Instead of arbitrary and irrational obstacles designed to protect their political turf, they are backing my efforts whole heartedly, and doing all they can to facilitate things.

And I can't tell you what a massive relief it is to me to only have to worry about succeeding, and to put all that political nonsense aside. Instead of having to multitask between something I can do well and something I really can't, I can focus on the singular task I've spent the last 20 years learning. And to me that feels like I've been unchained. To have people be happy with me succeeding on their behalf instead of being angered by the way it weakens their political position, is about as liberating a feeling as I've ever had in my life.

This is the difference between focusing on politics, and focusing exclusively on economic benefit. It's the difference between a free market which is left to run itself with nothing restraining success except someone's competitors, and an economy which is 'managed' by disinterested third parties in government. It's the difference between a vision where success is unambiguously rewarded, and one where someone whose only stake is political, get's to decide who is being 'fair' and who isn't based upon their own ideas of fairness.

I've heard that clip of Michelle Obama talking about how once you are successful you shouldn't slam the door behind you. I've spent much of my career with doors being slammed in my face. And the one thing that was always true, was that it was being slammed for political reasons. But if we reduce the influence of politics in our economy, we unchain people just like I now feel unchained. If we increase the power of politicians, all we do is pick a different person in whose face the door will be slammed.

Mitt Romney doesn't want to slam the door in anyone's face - he wants to eliminate the doors altogether and let the market and the consumer decide. It's the Democrats who want to slam doors - but only in the 'right' faces, so their political supporters can move ahead, whether the market says they deserve to or not. Dodd-Frank is a door that they plan on slamming in someone's face. Obamacare is 10,000 little doors - each with a face 'targeted' to be slammed in. And the EPA, the department of energy and all the other bureaus have faces they think a door should be slammed in.

Solyndra's low cost loan was a door slammed in the face of it's competitors. So was GM's 'bailout'. So was everything that team Obama calls an economic success. Slamming doors in people's face is the only thing they know. And the only way we'll achieve the Obama vision where the door isn't slammed in the face of the person behind you, is by eliminating the role of government in our economy, and the importance of people just like Obama.