Recent Posts

Categories

Archives

Archive for February, 2009

Gal Behind The Curtain…

Friday, February 27th, 2009, by

Hello faithful BJM readers, I just wanted to send over an apology if the site has been behaving a little strangely these past few days. We had a perfect storm of several events: Feedburner went down for about 12 hours (which disrupted RSS and email distribution), right about the time we decided to tinker behind-the-scenes […]

Don’t Make a Bad Situation Worse

Friday, February 27th, 2009, by

We are now sixteen months into our bear market, and fourteen months into our recession. And if we give in to our worst impulses, we can lengthen both well beyond their normal, allotted lifespan. I’m referring to the dangerous turn towards protectionism and the open hostility to free trade. It crops up in several manifestations. […]

Kick ’em While They’re Down

Thursday, February 26th, 2009, by

Time was, I enjoyed starting the day with freshly brewed coffee and the morning newspaper. That was when there was a balanced mix of good and bad news. Nowadays, the mix is bad….and worse. Which brings us to the dreary little item that caught my eye the other morning, by AP reporter Christopher Leonard “Bank […]

What Creative Destruction Looks Like, Part III

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009, by

So far, in parts I and II, we’ve talked about downsizing of both office space and homes as a rational response to the economic convulsions resulting from the recession. So, why stop there? Why not downsize the mega-states of California and New York while we’re at it? This trend was well underway even before the […]

What Creative Destruction Looks Like, Part II

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009, by

What do we do now with all the McMansions we bought during the real estate bubble? The real estate lobby helped to bring on this glut through their relentless legislative logrolling. Nowhere else will you see a household consumption expenditure tricked out to such wretched excess. The surge in prices before 2005 was fueled by […]

What Creative Destruction Looks Like, Part I

Monday, February 23rd, 2009, by

Free market capitalism has gotten a bad rap from famed economist Joseph Schumpeter’s immortal use of the phrase..”creative destruction”. The listener tends to hear mostly the destruction part better than the important modifier—creative. You need to absorb the complete dynamic. It’s hard to feel sorry for typewriter manufacturers who have gone out of business, when […]

Misguided Mortgage Compassion

Friday, February 20th, 2009, by

Here we go again. In our collective zeal to lighten the burden on residential mortgage holders, we risk the hazard of doing permanent damage for future borrowers. First, some background. We allow banks to charge higher rates on credit card debt, because it is unsecured. The banks know that a large contingent of borrowers will […]

Firings Will Continue Until Morale Improves

Thursday, February 19th, 2009, by

Be careful of what you wish for…you may just get it. The so-called stimulus bill has passed. All three of them. It started with the TARP Whose dimensions were scribbled out on the back of an envelope by for the former Treasury Secretary, as a percentage of GDP. And the pols and the public fell […]