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August 2010



How To Value Gold

August 20, 2010 – Comments (23) | RELATED TICKERS: GLD , IAU , GG

Have you seen this video that mocks gold owners?  It shows how it's easy to twist reality 180 degrees and make it funny at the same time.  Congratulations to the author (director?) on a nice piece of verbal sleight of hand.    [more]



Inanity In Our Schools

August 18, 2010 – Comments (10)

A friend of mine teaches at a very well known university and told me something shocking last night.  This person has taught there for five years and has more than a decade of teaching experience.  It turns out his department is hiring a secretary to answer the phones and do some administrative work.  Not shocking… but what IS shocking is that the advertised salary for this person is 8 percent higher than my friend’s salary.    [more]



More Inflation & Taxes From the Federal Reserve

August 17, 2010 – Comments (7)

This news that the electronic printing press has been dusted off and is starting to hum should bring a queasy feeling to your stomach.  When investors buy government debt, they do so with dollars already in existence.  When the Fed buys government debt, it creates new dollars to do so.  An influx of new dollars decreases the value of existing dollars (including your wages, stocks, and other financial assets).  And because these new dollars are not distributed evenly through the society (they are spent by government), your financial wealth is reduced.  This is the worst kind of inflation.    [more]



Stimulate Growth By Unleashing The Patent Office

August 13, 2010 – Comments (4)

Did you know that the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office is entirely self funded?  See this article.  It doesn’t receive any money from the government for its operations.  In fact, the government takes money from the USPTO and spends it on other programs.  About $330 million of $1.9 billion in revenue is diverted in this fashion.  This is a problem because there is a huge backlog of patent applications – over 700,000 to be precise – that are languishing because of lack of examiners to look at them.   [more]



Video Games: Drain on the Economy?

August 12, 2010 – Comments (8) | RELATED TICKERS: ATVI , EA

A colleague cited some statistics that gave the impression the video game industry is good for the economy.  They were:   [more]



Normal Crash, Insane System

August 06, 2010 – Comments (1) | RELATED TICKERS: WDR , VXX , IVV

A front page Wall Street Journal article today looked back at the Flash Crash of three months ago, a subject I'm very interested in.    [more]

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