Friday, July 02, 2010

Quotes of the day

I think [the hedge fund tax proposed by NY Governor Paterson and the NY state legislators is] the best thing that ever happened to Connecticut. I can’t imagine why every hedge fund won’t pick up tomorrow and leave.--Mayor Michael Bloomberg

It is important to understand that the no-deficit rule was a sharp break with tradition. In the postwar years, many economists argued that you did not need to be in the black every year, as long as budgets were balanced over the course of the economic cycle, so that deficits during slumps would be paid off with surpluses in good years. Whatever the economic rationale for that approach, it didn't work in the real world of politicians. Once you break the spell--once governments find that they can get away with borrowing instead of taxing to pay the bills--it is almost impossibly tempting for politicians to do it again and again until the debt is out of control.--Paul Martin, Canada's former Minister of Finance

... in this suburb of Cleveland, supervisors at Ben Venue Laboratories, a contract drug maker for pharmaceutical companies, have reviewed 3,600 job applications this year and found only 47 people to hire at $13 to $15 an hour, or about $31,000 a year. The going rate for entry-level manufacturing workers in the area, according to Cleveland State University, is $10 to $12 an hour, but more skilled workers earn $15 to $20 an hour. All candidates at Ben Venue must pass a basic skills test showing they can read and understand math at a ninth-grade level. A significant portion of recent applicants failed, and the company has been disappointed by the quality of graduates from local training programs. It is now struggling to fill 100 positions.--Motoko Rich

The recent uproar began after the entire French [World Cup] team refused to attend a training session following the expulsion of a teammate. The player in question, Nicolas Anelka, had shouted obscenities at the coach, Raymond Domenech, during the halftime of France's 0-2 pasting by Mexico on June 17. When the French media began calling this action a "strike" and a "mutiny," the escalation of the incident into a crisis took on a political dimension that is best explained as post-colonial drama, as indispensable black talent confronted the white authority figure whose job it was to keep them under control.--John Hoberman

Why would anyone expect this kind of [stimulus] spending to create many jobs for people who are unemployed? I don’t get it.--Russ Roberts

[Fannie Mae] (along with Freddie) is threatening not to accept loans if the associated borrowers retrofit their homes with solar panels through a government stimulus program. ... Fannie may never end up doing anything with the residential carbon trading platform it patented. Yet depending on how the firm intended to use the system, solar panels on the homes in its portfolio could affect how much profit it could derive from the new market it would create. When contacted, Fannie chose not to provide a comment on the potential connection between its policy on liens related to solar panels and its residential carbon emissions patent.--Daniel Indiviglio

If the issue is that the right to gun ownership can be abused, well, so can all of the other rights. Part of the reason why gun owners need to keep their own weapons is precisely because gun ownership can be abused. While the Left side of the Court extols the ability of states to act as laboratories for social and legal innovation, they ignore the fact that the “experiments” in gun bans have proven without exception to be failures. ... While we celebrate the fact that five Justices got it right, we should be very worried that the other four still would rather search for penumbras and emanations for their own idea of social engineering than in actually reading the clear text of the document they swore to uphold.--Ed Morrisey

By analyzing the DNA of the world's oldest people, Boston University scientists said Thursday they have discovered a genetic signature of longevity. They expect soon to offer a test that could let people learn whether they have the constitution to live to a very old age. The researchers, who studied more than 1,000 people over the age of 100, identified a set of 150 unique genetic markers that, taken together, are linked to extreme longevity. They acknowledged they didn't know all the genes involved, nor their exact function in extending old age.--Robert Lee Hotz

The debate over the economy can be thought of as a trade—[John] Paulson taking one side, [Paul] Krugman the other. Paulson's got real money on the table, but for both men, the main risk is reputational. Is Paulson another Wall Street one-hit wonder? Is Krugman another too-smart-for-his-own-good academic with no feel for animal spirits? Paulson may have an edge because he is just playing the market. Krugman is playing history, which is quite a bit trickier.--Hugo Lindgren

When Charlie [Munger] thinks about things, he starts by inverting. To understand how to be happy in life, Charlie will study how to make life miserable; to examine how business become big and strong, Charlie first studies how businesses decline and die; most people care more about how to succeed in the stock market, Charlie is most concerned about why most have failed in the stock market. His way of thinking comes from the saying in the farmer’s philosophy: I want to know is where I’m going to die, so I will never go there. Charlie constantly collects and researches the notable failures in each and every type of people, business, government, and academia, and arranges the causes of failures into a decision-making checklist for making the right decisions. Because of this, he has avoided major mistakes in his decision making in his life and in his career. The importance of this on the performance of Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway over the past 50 years cannot be emphasized enough. ... Charlie very much appreciates Confucius. I sometimes think that if Confucius was reborn in America today, Charlie will probably be the best incarnation.--Louis Li

1 comment:

  1. Oh yes... that is very good...

    "Nothing gold can stay"
    ~Robert Frost