Monday, January 23, 2006

The State of the World- What is to be Done?

What is to be Done"?

Here is a good article posted at: entitled "What is to be Done?', which pretty much reflects my own attitude about the world.

What he advise people to do, instead of complaining or trying to get governments to do what you think is right[ i.e shrink,grow, fund, not fund, bomb, not bomb, invade, uninvade etc.], is pretty much what I attempt to help people accomplish- its nice to read something that is a little closer to the way I think than I'm used to seeing.

article at:

Investing versus Speculating: Continued.

Investing versus Speculating: Continued.

To follow up on my blog of 15/01/06 "Investing versus Speculating" , here is a good example of financial "experts" who claim to be able to predict future economic events. This time, the subject is the current yield inversion in the bond markets, supposedly an indicator of a coming economic recession. [If you don't know what a yield curve is, just read the article, as one thing it does accomplish is to explain the idea reasonably clearly.]

Onebornfree's Commentary [followed by article]:

This is just another attempt to predict future economic events. Although yield inversions have a fair record, they are not foolproof predictors of recessions. A properly balanced long term savings plan which allows for losses occurring via unforseen recessions [ the event supposedly predicted via bond yield inversons], and other unforseeable economic events , although not 100% infallible, has to be a lot safer bet than simply speculating on a recession by throwing all of your savings into 90 day t-bills or AA+ rated corporate bonds[ or whatever] for the duration.

If you believe a recession is imminent [for whatever reason] place your bet with money you can afford to lose, if you have any.

The article, from the Sovereign Society's [ ] free email advisory named "The A-Letter":

"Dangers of Bond Market Inversion in 2006

Today's guest comment is by Eric Roseman, a member of the Sovereign Society Council of Experts and editor of Renegade Investor.

Dear A-Letter Reader:

Over the last two years, investors have barely kept pace with inflation in benchmark intermediate term US Treasury bonds. After enjoying a massive rally since 2000, bond yields hit a 40 year low in 2003 at 3.3%. Despite thirteen Federal Reserve rate hikes since June 2004, bond yields have actually declined twenty basis points (0.20%), a worrisome signal Chairman Greenspan called a "conundrum" last fall. Yield curve inversion is a dangerous anomaly because it portends to economic weakness; the last three inversions all resulted in economic recessions.

Indeed, the bond market might be signaling big trouble for the US economy in 2006. The benchmark yield curve, or the difference between the two-year and ten-year Treasury yields, inverted in late December. An inverted yield curve occurs when short-term interest rates yield more than long-term interest rates. This phenomenon is a rarity in bond markets and typically indicates that bond investors think the US Federal Reserve is tightening the monetary screws too aggressively. If this is the case, then there is a good chance that the United States might suffer a recession later this year, especially if the yield curve stays inverted.

Historically, US Treasury bonds have positively correlated to common stocks. In market history, that relationship did sever during the Great Depression as stocks collapsed from 1929 to 1932 while bonds surged. Another break in that relationship developed in the post 1997 era as the Asian economic crisis and the near demise of hedge fund Long Term Capital Management drove investors into Treasury bonds en masse. In fact, since 1997, every time the stock market has corrected sharply, Treasury bonds have provided a negative correlation to equities. This means that T-bonds potentially serve as an ideal asset allocation tool amid market mayhem, protecting portfolios.

If yield curve inversion continues through the first quarter of 2006, investors would be well advised to purchase long-term Treasury bonds. An inverted yield curve spells big trouble for corporate earnings; an investment allocation to bonds would offset any stock market losses ahead of a major economic downturn or bear market.

Bonds did a great job protecting capital during the last bear market from 2000 to 2002. I expect this relationship will repeat itself this year if yield curve inversion continues.

ERIC N. ROSEMAN, Montreal, Quebec
Editor, Renegade Investor
Web site:" [end of article]

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Sinus Infections


Q: "This is only like the 2nd time I have ever had one and its driving me insane!! I have a prescription from the doctor to help it, but good grief, this is the 3rd week I have had it!! Headache...OMG!!

What does everyone do for this? Im using the shower ( steam ), drinking fluids ( lake Mayer is down 4 feet from me ), advil.......any other ideas? I see the doc again on the 24th. Do I truly have to wait to feel better? Do they normally last this long? Thanks.

Edited to add this...the prescription is NOT an antibiotic. Its to dry it up.

Onebornfree: "I've used both something called Colloidal Silver [best one I found is by a co. called "Source Naturals], and a product called [if I remember correctly] "Nettipot" which is an all in one sinus rinse kit available from health food stores like Brighter Day, as is colloidal silver.

Like Nettipots system, colloidal silver liquid is inserted into the sinus cavities [ say half a dropper full in each nostril, with head tilted back - retain for approx. 5 minutes or as long as is comfortable.

It's amazing what gets kicked out from the sinus cavities when you do either of these [green stuff!].

Drugs just mask the symptoms, which are often caused by food allergies, lack of stomach HCL, air born pollutants etc."

ps The New York Times had a good article on colloidal silver recently:

Investing versus Speculating- Financial Safety and You-part 1 of 2

Investing versus Speculating- Financial Safety and You

For most of us, the biggest threat to our own financial safety is not the Government, liberals or neo-cons, George Bush, or even the Chinese, but our own beliefs and superstitions about economics, investing and saving.

Danger- False Assumptions!

False assumptions about investments and markets, and yours or someone else's "infallible" ability to predict their future performance, will cause you a lot of financial pain, sooner or later.

Investment Fallacy Number One

As far as financial safety goes, the single most damaging belief that you can have is the one that says the future performance of markets is knowable and predictable.

Reality Bites

In reality, the only thing that we can predict about the future is this: that it will be entirely unpredictable.

What This Means For Your Long Term Savings

As the future of all markets is entirely unpredictable, what this unfortunately means is that if you "invest" money you cannot afford to lose [ie long term savings] in any particular market , or group of markets, based on the predictions of future events, regardless of whether they are predictions from a highly respected investment advisor or economist, a "hard money analyst", the government, the Federal Reserve, your Auntie Mable who is "good with stocks", a "technical analyst", a "fundamental analyst", a tea-leaf reader or "Uncle Tom Cobley and all", you are not investing, but speculating [gambling], with money that you cannot afford to lose [i.e. your long term savings.]

Not that there is anything wrong with speculating [gambling]- the problem is that for most of us, when we believe we are investing for our future we are actually taking dangerous speculative risks, simply because we assume that "financial experts etc." can indeed predict the future performance of markets.

Investment Sanity- 4 Steps

The First Step

The first step towards investment sanity simply involves humility, a humility that leads to your own admission of your own inability to regularly predict the future performance of any market.

The Second Step

The second step involves an admission that no-one else can predict the future performance of any market either - that all of the so-called experts are just as stupid/blind as the rest of us !

The Third Step

The third step is to start thinking seriously about how to construct a long term savings plan that does not rely on _anyone's_ supposed ability to predict future economic events.

The Fourth Step

Review the information at my website under financial safety [] then get in contact with me at: