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  1. Yes, I do know what derivatives are. You try to make it seem very simple and they're not. I also do know what an accredited investor is. I worked in the IB industry for over 5 years and it's not as simple as you make it seem. Coming from that industry IMO if there would've been some regulation we wouldn't be in this mess. It amazes me how some people think that all this mess can be blamed on one person. Did you know the credit rating agencies made BILLIONS issuing BS ratings to CDOs and MBS. If you issued CDOs or MBS you literally shopped around for your rating. You didn't like what S&P gave you , well then go to Moodys and pay them for the AAA. In laymans terms if you had a 380 credit score you shopped around till you got a 800+. Coming from that industry I say regulate the crap out of it. Why is it that none of the execs from AIG, Lehmans, Goldman, S&P, Moodys, ever faced any jail time. These guys knew what they were doing and knew they were selling crap. Why is it that Lehamns was rated AAA till hours before it filed BK? What's even worse is that now you have these executives teaching at business schools. Teaching the next generation how to swindle billions. I'm all for capitalism, but what these guys did is beyond criminal.
  2. Watch the movie Inside Job, It's not as simple as this article makes it seem. Barnie Frank is one of the few politicians who wants to regulate the $600 trillion dollar derivatives market. After the whole meltdown of 2008 do you really trust wall street to regulate itself. We're not talking about billions anymore, more like trillions.
  3. Absolutely it's grandstanding, especially at this point in time. The head of S&P is a liberal arts major. I would love to see what positions Soros took today, and I bet they were dialed in before S&P made their call. Soros and Buffet were dialed in months ago. This didn't take them by surprise. The whole ratings by these agencies is a bunch of BS. S&P had Lehmans and AIG rated as investment grade during the whole financial mess of 2008. Not only that but these rating agencies are only paid when a rating is issued. Between 2002-07 S&P, Moodys and Fitch saw their revenues increase by a factor of 2 to $6 billion just by issuing ratings. And guess what they were covering...CDOs. These guys were handing out 'AAA' ratings like they were going out of style and getting paid for it too.
  4. Where in my post did I mention anything about college faculty? I'm the first one to say they should be well paid. But please show me the justification for a 439% increase in college tuition from 1982-2007 while the medium family income rose 147% during the same period. I remember having to dish out well over 1000 a semester on textbooks 10 years ago. One year I paid over 250 for an chem book. Just because it was the new edition, the previous edition was 3 years old.
  5. I agree, but it seems we've turned higher education into a money making system. I was reading in the NY times that since 1982 college tuition has increased close to 500%, while the medium family income about 150%. Just as example UCLA for residents is 21K-27K per year for non-residents its 44K-50K. How can a typical family afford to send one kid to college.
  6. Exactly. Leave it to Coulter and her followers to turn this into an issue about sexuality. Robert Hannsen and Aldrich Ames are two individuals who caused far more damage than Manning.
  7. In 2010 the Dep of Defense accounted for 19% of all federal budget expenditures, and 28% of all tax revenues. Add the non DOD expenditures and it goes to 28-38% and 42-57% respectively. To top it all off defense spending grew on average 9% annually from 2000-2009. How can you say that the military is not a huge drain for us. I'm sure there is a lot of fat that can be cut, but heaven forbid anyway ever mentions that.
  8. That's pretty much the gist of why the testimony of the 'giant witness' was excluded. Are the rules of evidence and witnesses that different between a civilian and military court, especially with regards to testimony obtained through coercion or torture.
  9. You make some very good points about having an 'Emergency Fund', even if you have insurance you should still have an E-Fund. I'm not a big fan on the DIY route when it comes to pet insurance. I had a Dobe who got bloat a few years ago, she had to go to the dog ER since bloat can kill within hours and at the end of the ordeal the bill came out to close to 4,000. The pet insurance pretty much covered it all. Move on to my second dog who got cancer and over the year she was in treatments the insurance covered close to 80% of the bills, not to mention regular check-ups, shots and spay or neutering. IMO pet insurance is a good deal, even if I saved 20 a month it would've taken me over 16 years to save up the money I needed to cover the first surgery.
  10. Where did you get these numbers? I know a few teachers back east that have Masters and make less than 42K a year.
  11. Do you know how much an average teacher makes in NYC school district? Last I saw it was around 42K, which is not a lot of money. I was making more than that first year out of college and that was close to 10 years ago. BFD if they have health insurance that covers cosmetic surgery. If we can't give them a decent salary, might as well give them excellent benefits. The DOD budget accounts for 4.3% of our GDP. I'm sure there are a lot of programs that we don't need, but the right-wing gets all pissed when we even mention that we need to cut their budget. I say we start there.
  12. You didn't get the memo? It's been moved up to 12/21/2012.
  13. Wow. Nothing like free publicity. I bet most of the major networks will run a snippet about him when he burns the books.
  14. I wonder sometimes if he is doing this because he feels he is sending a message or is it just a publicity stunt. Look at this forum, if it wasn't for his actions we wouldn't be talking about him, and look at all the online publicity he is getting.