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The Biggest Default In History

By someone else following x   2008 Mar 2, 10:50am 16,622 views   266 comments   watch   nsfw   quote     share    


real money

The biggest default in history has already happened: the US has devalued its promises of repayment to everyone who bought US Treasuries or US bonds of any kind, by devaluing the dollar 50% in just a few years.

What does this mean for the US? Higher interest rates. I don't understand why any person or any government would trust the dollar after this. The logical course of action would be to demand much higher interest rates to compensate for the risk of holding what is rapidly turning out to be only so much green toilet paper.

The thing I don't get is the huge gap between the interest rate the Fed sets for interbank lending (which seems to limit what Americans can get on their CD's and savings) and the very high rates we now see for municipal bond lending (sometimes as high as 20%). Something just doesn't make sense.

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227   OO   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:05am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

"Spices and Herbs" on the label of your salad dressing bottle usually means: preservatives.

That's why I make my own salad dressing.

228   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:11am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I am not a big fan of salads, except warm seafood salad or anything with beets in it.

I hate lettuce, especially raw. I love cooked escarole.

229   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:12am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

"your iPod will not match your purse" LOL!

Wouldn't it be neat-o to find that all of the ill-gotten/fraudulent gains from the housing boom were all locked away in a huge vault somewhere and all we had to do to make everything whole again was to dig it up and give it back to it's rightful owners?

The vault (unlike noted treasures of the past) would simply be marked "Stuff" on the entry's massive doors.

As in "what did you buy with all the equity you took out of your home? Oh... "stuff".

When our intrepid explorers unveil it the "aroma" of a MILLION lap dances will swarm over you like a warm breeze! 10 million chrome Fatboy Harleys. A billion linear feet of hardwood flooring only surpassed by a Trillion un-scratched lotto tickets! All in mint condition.

All is well.

230   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:13am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

RE: salad dressing

How about citrus olive oil emulsion with clam juice?

231   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:35am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

How about a Sales Tax on used Harleys? Just coordinate with all 50 DMV's and every time a 2001 or newer Harley changes ownership, HALF of the proceeds go to the Housing Boom Bail-Out SuperFund!?

Monitor C/L and Ebay for MEW toys and collect up front. Sorry, homedebtors have abused the honor system so now we need to see cash on the barrel head.

232   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:36am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Oh, you paid "cash" for your Harley? Pffftt. Yeah right.

233   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:37am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

There are some pretty good used LS430 deals out there on CL!

234   BayAreaIdiot   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:38am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Without securitization, could loan standards have gone to hell?

That's a great question to which I don't have an answer. But maybe if the regulators actually paid attention, loan practices might have remained sane, securitization or not. Of course if we accept that sec. *was* the cause, then it would've led to this disaster sooner or later. Instead of doing so via housing market it may have done so via who knows which market. I would argue however that if I could pick my personal "this is the worse way to blow up the world's financial system", doing so via sec. of recklessly made mortgages would be my pick. I think.

235   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:42am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

But maybe if the regulators actually paid attention, loan practices might have remained sane, securitization or not.

This is why regulations are best left to Free Market.

236   BayAreaIdiot   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:43am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

10 million chrome Fatboy Harleys. A billion linear feet of hardwood flooring only surpassed by a Trillion un-scratched lotto tickets! All in mint condition.

hey you forgot the granite countertops! and the stainless stell appliances!

237   StuckInBA   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:44am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

DinOR :

Since they are making the Indiana Jones movies again, you can submit the idea for the next movie. I might call it "Indiana Jones and the National Treasure". It would have been appropriate but it would be an insult to Indiana Jones movies.

238   BayAreaIdiot   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:46am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

This is why regulations are best left to Free Market.
I would rather trust a firing squad for those in the C-suite or on the board, who should've known better but opted to continue to "dance". Is that too Chinese? :-)

239   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:50am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Free Market "fails" because we fail it by installing moral hazards.

240   BayAreaIdiot   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:55am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Free Market “fails” because we fail it by installing moral hazards.

You might as well say that it fails because we live in the real world. I mean, has there ever been a free market in the sense that you mean it? It's a bit like saying "let's fight crime not by incarcerating criminals, but by allowing individual self-defense and waiting for everyone to become 'enlightened'"

241   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 5:59am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

by allowing individual self-defense

I don't know. Places with high crime rates tend to have a "special" interpretation of the 2nd Amendment.

242   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:06am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

O.k?

"Indiana Jones and the Temple of... Stuff"

"National Embarrassment"

"Indiana Jones and the Last MEW-sade"

?

243   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:07am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

DinOR, what did you eat for lunch? You are super funny today. :)

244   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:09am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Well that may be changing depending on the holding in the DC v. Heller case.....

Hey my brother actually paid cash for his Fatboy Harley. He's a naer-do-well pauper by choice (career in print journalism) who got his part of my dad's estate and has been going around blowing it on toys. Since he's 60 years old and has no other financial reserves, I view this as the height of irresponsibility.

He told me he bought a new Fatboy off the dealer's floor since it was an "investment, that never goes down in value". Since when does Lawrence Yun work for HD?

So a Fatboy is the wheeled equivalent of pergraniteel?

245   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:12am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Maybe DinOR is exhibiting an MSG reaction.

246   OO   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:18am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

DennisN,

I would have had more respect for your brother had he taken out a car loan on his Harley.

247   OO   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:18am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

sorry, I am having MSG reaction, motorcycle loan.

248   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:22am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Well, DC v. Heller is going to be the one of the most interesting cases this year.

249   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:24am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Actually at $20K+, a Fatboy requires a "car-sized" loan.

250   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:28am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

The oral arguments in Heller are scheduled for 10 AM on March 18th, and the USSC has announced they'll post the audio later in the day. See www.supremecourtus.gov/oral_arguments/availabilityoforalargumenttranscripts.pdf for how to access audio and transcripts.

251   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:31am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I was surprised (but not shocked) that the NRA was against the suit initially.

252   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:34am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Actually, shouldn't it be "Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost ARM"? ;)

253   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 6:36am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

The NRA has always been scared of a direct USSC holding on the 2nd Amd., since it's possible that the USSC will get it wrong.

But Heller is the perfect case. No 14th Amd. "incorporation" issues to cloud it. Does anyone know what Mr. Heller's day job is? He's the perfect person to bring suit.

254   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:37am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

DennisN,

Actually I think Yun stole that from Harley! I'm really looking forward to those falling into to disrepair as the 70's Revisited marches on. Unfortunately this summer will probably be the zenith where MEW, debt and the ability to still ride, intersect.

I'm willing to bet Summer '09 is a lot quieter. On the lake too.

255   DinOR   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 6:42am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

"Raiders of the Lost ARM" LOL!

Perfect.

256   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 7:33am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

How about this? Warren Buffett beat out Bill Gates!

www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23485427/

257   HelloKitty   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 7:36am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

There is a house on my parents street with TWIN H2's. I hope they work locally. 10 mpg is killer.

And the home is all remodeled in and out - they used that fake stone siding (colored molded cement) that is glued to the stucco in little stacks which falls off after a few years because they use no mortar in the joints. I now hate this look after EVERY SINGLE strip mall remodeled with it during the horrifying bubble years. The skateboard kids can kick it off easily, not gonna last long in Los Angeles.

I think I prefer natural wood siding like classic tahoe 70's cabins. nice.

258   OO   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 7:52am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

To be honest, none of them is as rich as Buffet if all of them try to unload their shares within a short period of time.

Buffet's portfolio is far more diversified, and therefore much more liquid. He can unload and cash in with so much more ease than those whose entire fortune is based on one single stock. What do you think MSFT stock price will be if news leaks out that Gates is going to sell 1/3 of his remaining stake? It doesn't even take Gates' 1/3 stake to rock the stock market, just try Ballmer selling half of his remaining stake.

In that sense, Buffet is by far the richest person on earth.

259   DennisN   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 5, 8:32am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I've heard it said that being cheap is the new black.

I'm setting up an informal grocery buying co-op with my neighbors since there's still savings to be had. The local Cash and Carry store (same as Smart and Final in CA) had really nice medium size onions in the 50 lb sack for $3.95. I split one with my neighbors. They also had real sesame oil (not sesame-flavored oil) in a gallon jug for $14.19. I cleaned out some wine bottles and shared this out too. Generally tiny bottles of sesame oil go for around $5 in grocery stores.

260   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 10:22am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

How about this? Warren Buffett beat out Bill Gates!

Sure, I love Warren Buffett.

261   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 10:26am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

In that sense, Buffet is by far the richest person on earth.

Not necessarily. A few businessmen in Russia or Mid-east are potentially richer.

And they are probably extremely liquid.

We live in the age of A380 private jets and 500-foot yachts.

I much rather have $30 Billion worth of natural resources (e.g. oil) than $60 Billion worth of stocks.

262   OO   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 10:29am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Yeah, but these businessmen in Russia and Middle East may be taken out by their rivals any time before they reach 50.

I once saw an interview featuring the most powerful Russian businessmen at a party. One year later, half of the attendants got murdered. In the same interview, one of the top criteria for an uberrich Russian guy in selecting his new home in London (not Moscow, but London) is, it has to be out of the range from nearby snipers. He needs to access his home without being in the shooting range.

263   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 5, 10:53am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Warren Buffett is one of the most respectable person alive. I am even willing to take him at face value. I don't even take myself at face value.

264   HeadSet   ignore (1)   2008 Mar 6, 1:32am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

In that sense, Buffet is by far the richest person on earth.

You forgot a few folks. Fidel Castro owns a whole island nation and everyone on it. Although some in the Middle East have ordered pimped up A380s, Castro has a fleet of MiGs, TV and radio stations, ships, etc. All are at his disposal for life. Kim Jong-il is another that owns more than Buffet.

265   Peter P   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 6, 2:08am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Kim Jong-il is another that owns more than Buffet.

The Queen is even richer. She owns UK and all the inflated homes. :)

God save the Queen.

266   Jimbo   ignore (0)   2008 Mar 9, 5:02pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Are there any fantastic, unique Californian food that can blow visitors away without being too damaging on the wallet? Anything below $100 pp would be good.

Okay this is kind of late, but you really should take them to Chez Panisse in Berkeley. Quite a drive from South Bay, but well worth it and uniquely Californian.

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