What the Chilean miners can teach us about Obamacare

From the Daily Caller - by Robert Goldberg - Nearly a billion people watched as the 33 Chilean miners were rescued from their accidental prison below the earth. And millions more made their safe escape possible through innovations in medicine, telecommunications and engineering. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Daniel Henninger observed, “If those miners had been trapped a half-mile down like this 25 years ago anywhere on earth, they would be dead. What happened over the past 25 years that meant the difference between life and death for those men?” His answer: market-driven innovation. Henninger continued: “The Center Rock drill, heretofore not featured on websites like Engadget or Gizmodo, is in fact a piece of tough technology developed by a small company in it for the money, for profit. That’s why they innovated down-the-hole hammer drilling. If they make money, they can do more innovation. “ Read more

Angela Merkel declares death of German multiculturalism

From the UK Guardian.com - Kate Connolly in Berlin - Chancellor Angela Merkel has declared the death of multiculturalism in Germany, saying that it had "failed utterly" , in what has been interpreted as a startling shift from her previous views. The German leader said it had been an illusion to think that Germans and foreign workers could "live happily side by side". "We kidded ourselves for a while that they wouldn't stay, but that's not the reality," she said at a conference of the youth wing of her Christian Democratic Union party at the weekend, referring to the gastarbeiters, or guest workers, who arrived in Germany to fill a labour shortage during the economic boom of the 1960s. "Of course the tendency had been to say, 'let's adopt the multicultural concept and live happily side by side, and be happy to be living with each other'. But this concept has failed, and failed utterly," she said, without elaborating on the nature and causes of this failure. Read more

EDITORIAL: Oil-drilling doublespeak

Washington Times Editorial - The Obama administration has announced the end of its ban on oil drilling in the Gulf. "We are open for business. ... We have made, and continue to make, significant progress in reducing the risks associated with deep-water drilling," chimed Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on Tuesday. This is nothing but empty campaign-season rhetoric because oil companies still can't resume drilling. "It will clearly not be tomorrow, and it will not be next week," Michael R. Bromwich, director of the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, clarified last week. "My sense is we will have permits approved by the end of the year, but how much before the end of the year I can't say, and how many before the end of the year I can't say." So the secretary says there's an "open" sign on Interior's front door and oil companies can line up to purchase new drilling permits, while his department's regulatory enforcer has a vague "sense" permits might be handed out by the end of December. This is bureaucratic doublespeak - the moratorium is lifted, but it's not. Read more

Aggie Volleyball Sweeps Nevada 3-0

bleedCrimson.net Report

The Aggie volleyball team completed their third match in four nights by sweeping Nevada 3-0 on Sunday night. The Aggies won the first two sets in extra points 28-26 and 27-25 and then took over down the stretch of the third set winning 25-20.

Rocio Gutierrez played a nearly flawless match for the Aggies recording 10 kills on 23 swings with just one attack error and also recorded five digs while posting a .391 attack percentage. Kayleigh Giddens finished with a match-high 17 kills while Kelsey Brennan added nine kills on 14 swings with just three attack errors to hit .429 on the night.

With the victory the Aggies improve to 7-1 in league play and 13-9 overall while finishing the three-match weekend stretch at 3-0. Click here to read more.


Mexican hit men stalk U.S.

From the Washington Times - By Jerry Seper - Drug-smuggling gangs in Mexico have sent well-armed assassins, or "sicarios," into Arizona to locate and kill bandits who are ambushing and stealing loads of cocaine, marijuana and heroin headed to buyers in the U.S., the Department of Homeland Security has warned Arizona law enforcement authorities. In a memo first sent in May but widely circulated since, the department said a group of "15, very well-equipped and armed" assassins complete with body armor had been sent into the state to identify, locate and kill the drug thieves, who are thought to be independent operators. Disguised as groups of backpackers but carrying empty boxes covered with burlap, the memo said the paid assassins would attempt to "draw out the bandits." Once identified, it said, the assassins "will take out the bandits." Read more

Week # 8 NM High School Football Scores

Academy 61, Hope Christian 7--Alamogordo 34, Gadsden 21--Aztec 70, Piedra Vista 19
Belen 56, Gallup 3--Capital 36, Espanola Valley 20--Capitan 54, Magdalena 0--Carlsbad 52, Santa Teresa 14--Chaparral 34, Ruidoso 31--Dulce 46, Navajo Pine 6--Eldorado 48, Del Norte 0--EP Cathedral, Texas 24, Deming 3--Eunice 33, NMMI 7--Gateway Christian 30, Tatum 8--Goddard 42, Hobbs 0--Hagerman 26, Fort Sumner 18--Hondo 70, Elida 22--Mesilla Valley 48, Carrizozo 20--Kirtland Central 41, Bloomfield 26--Lake Arthur 56, House 6--Las Cruces 35, Onate 21--La Cueva 49, Cibola 14--Lordsburg 45, Laguna-Acoma 6--Los Alamos 19, Santa Fe 14--Los Lunas 39, Grants 0--Loving 19, Dexter 6--Manzano 66, Clovis 48--Menaul 48, Springer 32--Raton 56, Taos 7--Rio Grande 27, Atrsico 7--Roy 52, NMSD 7--Roswell 43, Portales 14--Santa Rosa 47, Texico 7--Socorro 35, Hot Springs 20--Silver 42, Hatch Valley 0--St. Michael's 53, Pojo 7--Tucumcari 36, Clayton 13--Tularosa 46, Estancia 26--Valencia 62, Miyamura 7--Valley 45, Albuquerque High 21--Valley Christian 50, Dora 14--Zuni 34, Wingate 14


Real Estate, Interest Bearing Instruments, & Businesses

Jim Spence
Many times over our twenty-seven years in the investment business we have published written newsletters that reference a generalized overview of our approach to investments. The concept begins with the premise that essentially there are basically three general areas of investments (business, income producing real estate, and interest bearing instruments) and these three areas are constantly competing for the flows of investment capital in free markets. While some might argue that rare art, commodities, and raw land are also “investments” we would argue that funds committed to these areas are better defined as “speculations.”
We readily concede that a formidable case can be made that everything about human existence is “speculation.” However, if you do accept the basic premise that an investor must decide if he or she should place his or her long term purchasing power in interest bearing instruments, income producing real estate, or a business enterprise, then there is plenty of room for discussion. We proceed.
Cycles: We think it is helpful to contemplate the condition of the markets for interest bearing instruments, shares of business enterprises, and income producing real estate within a historical context. Let us begin by considering the fact that there have been a number of “cycles” for real estate, common stocks (shares of business), and bonds in modern history. Each of these asset classes has enjoyed marvelous and often quite extended periods of popularity and great relative performance. Each has also experienced excruciating periods of decline or tedious and protracted periods of stagnation.
Predicting when one particular asset class is going to become popular or unpopular is tricky. However, it can be extremely useful to at least remind ourselves of what has been going on in the most broad and generalized terms in each class.
Bonds: Bonds (U.S. government bonds) have had two remarkably great periods of relative risk-adjusted performance in modern history. The first occurred with the onset of Great Depression when interest rates plunged and then remained very low for an extended period of time. Investors who owned long term government bonds in 1928-29 and held them for many years found that they were exceedingly popular investments until the 1950’s. Purchasers of long and intermediate term bonds saw those holdings begin a long and difficult period of decline during the 1950’s. Government bonds began another phenomenal risk-adjusted performance period when interest rates hit an amazing secular peak roughly thirty years ago. Investors who purchased long term government bonds in the early 1980’s took positions in instruments that would become amazingly popular investments for three decades. And accordingly they delivered wonderful risk adjusted returns. Intermediate and long term bond prices are still near all time record high values and correspondingly LOW current yields.
Real Estate: In commenting on income producing real estate, we must begin by saying that it is most certainly more difficult to generalize about real estate than it is to do so with long term government bonds. Most surely the onset of the Great Depression was an absolutely horrible environment for most real estate values. And during most cycles the performance of income producing real estate properties have been “location” dependent. During a handful of cycles since the Great Depression nearly all income producing real estate has appreciated spectacularly. Until the real estate bubble popped three years ago in most areas of the country income-producing real estate had been the “darling” of the investment world. At cocktail parties during the first seven years of the decade investment discussions were dominated by talk of the marvelous increase in property values. It had been hard to go wrong with commercial and residential property in the vast majority of locations from 2001 to 2007.
Businesses: Investments in businesses (shares of common stock) behave more like real estate than they do like government bonds. We say this because like real estate, business investments rely on many economic factors for success or failure, whereas the interest rate level is the overwhelming key factor for government bond values. A great bull market for the share prices of most common stocks began in the early 1920’s and ended in October of 1929. Shortly after World War II another bull market for common stocks began and it lasted nearly twenty years. Yet another great bull market for stocks began in 1982 and this one also lasted eighteen years. Since the 21st century began, common stock averages have been terribly stagnant. They have hardly been the “darlings” of the investment world. However, like well located real estate, the share prices of truly well-positioned businesses have continued to prosper and reward investors through this most recent period of relative market average stagnation. Diversification and trends: What does all of this mean? First, we think this means the intelligent investor should hold investments in all three areas (real estate, common stocks, and interest bearing instruments). Second, we think the current GENERAL trends for values (which are subject to change without notice) are as follows: Income Producing Real Estate = Declining for several years now, Common Stocks = Rising since March of 2009, Intermediate and Long Term Bonds = Values have been rising (yields falling) for thirty years. A few final thoughts: Owning a home and or commercial property in the best possible location is usually a good idea though it is possible when a bubble forms to grossly overpay even for a “great location.” Still, year in and year out superior decisions on “construction quality” and “location” will usually lead to better investment results on real property.
Good decision-making on common stocks can be rewarding. However, overpaying for well-positioned businesses is also very common, particularly at the end of bull markets. Still, year in and year out keeping a professional eye and ear open when deciding which businesses possess superior financial characteristics and durable competitive advantages will lead to better investment results. As time marches on the age old questions will continue. What will interest rates do in the near future? When will the drop in interest rates end? Is the stock market finally out of the doldrums? Have property values bottomed and if so where are the best locations? We don’t know who knows the answers to these questions but we do know that knowing the precise answers is not required for long term success. We think intermediate and long term bonds without interest rate step provisions will produce subpar returns. We think the time it will take for the next boom in real estate is far off in the future. If you are going to invest in common stocks your success will depend on proper understanding the dynamics of three things, the underlying business, underlying business, and underlying business.


Washington Post Pulls Cartoon In Doing So It Reveals It's Own Version of Islamophobia

From Washington Post.com by Andrew Alexander - "Non Sequitur" is a popular comic that runs daily in about 800 newspapers, including this one. But the "Non Sequitur" cartoon that appeared in last Sunday's Post was not the one creator Wiley Miller drew for that day. Editors at The Post and many other papers pulled the cartoon and replaced it with one that had appeared previously. They were concerned it might offend and provoke some Post readers, especially Muslims. Miller is known for social satire. But at first glance, the single-panel cartoon he drew for last Sunday seems benign. It is a bucolic scene imitating the best-selling children's book "Where's Waldo?" A grassy park is jammed with activity. Animals frolic. Children buy ice cream. Adults stroll and sunbathe. A caption reads: "Where's Muhammad?" Miller's cartoon is clearly a satirical reference to the global furor that ensued in 2006 after a Danish newspaper invited cartoonists to draw the prophet Muhammad as they see him. After the cartoons were published, Muslims in many countries demonstrated against what they viewed as the lampooning of Islam's holiest figure. Read more here:

Malkin: Public Enemy # 1

Michelle Malkin
The White House attack on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce isn't about "disclosure." It's about disarmament. While posing as campaign finance champions, the ultimate goal of the Democratic offensive is to intimidate conservative donors, chill political free speech and drain Republican coffers. Chamber of Commerce official Bruce Josten tried to educate the public. "(W)e know what the purpose here is," he told ABC News. "It's to harass and intimidate." Josten cited protests and threats against chamber members as retribution for ads the organization ran opposing the federal health care takeover. But this isn't the first time liberal bullyboys have targeted right-leaning contributors. Far from it. In August 2008, a former Washington director of MoveOn.org -- the smear merchant group that branded Gen. David Petraeus a traitor for overseeing the successful troop surge in Iraq -- announced a brazen witch hunt against Republican donors. Read more here:


O'Reilly: So Barack What Happened?

Bill O'Reilly
From Townhall.com - Two years ago, Barack Obama was the political equivalent of Elvis Presley -- rolling into towns across America, performing before adoring crowds. Like the King, then-Sen. Obama relished the adoration and gave the crowd a great show. I saw it myself in New Hampshire. But now everything has changed. President Obama is not welcome in many parts of the country. Even some members of his own party don't want to be seen with him. It's so bad that Joe Manchin, the Democratic governor of West Virginia who is now running for the U.S. Senate, actually put out a TV commercial where he takes a rifle and shoots a hole into paper explaining "cap and trade" legislation. Read more here:


Incumbent Lujan Has Triple the "Cash on Hand"

Ben Ray Lujan
The only poll of note in the race for US House of Representatives in New Mexico’s Third Congressional District showed Republican challenger Tom Mullins behind by a surprisingly small margin of six points to Democratic incumbent Ben Ray Luján.
Tom Mullins
But after looking at the quarterly campaign contributions figures released Oct. 15 by the Federal Election Commission, Luján has more than three times as much “cash on hand.” During the quarter covering July, August and September Luján outraised Mullins $249,810.62 to $128,235.50, giving the first-term Democrat $316,295.28 “cash on hand” while Mullins has just $90,898.44 on hand. Read more here:


Forbes Rankings Out New Mexico Tumbling

Susan Martinez
New Mexico Is Dropping Rapidly In Forbes’ Rankings, Now 35th Out Of 50 States. “New Mexico dropped eight spots to No. 35 on Forbes’s latest annual list of the best states for business. New Mexico ranked No. 27 in 2009.” (Mark Harden, “Forbes: New Mexico Is 35th-Best State For Business,” New Mexico Business Weekly, 10/14/10). New Mexico Is Ranked 35th For Regulatory Environment & 49th For Quality Of Life. (Mark Harden, “Forbes: New Mexico Is 35th-Best State For Business,” New Mexico Business Weekly, 10/14/10)
The Susana Martinez for Governor Campaign released the following statement in response to the new Forbes state rankings: “The new Forbes study showing New Mexico dropping to 35th on its latest annual list of the best states for business is a sobering reminder of the effect the failed policies of the Richardson/Denish Administration have had on our state. We can no longer afford to continue the taxing, spending and arbitrary regulating as supported by Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish. Instead, we need bold change, which will create a pro-growth environment resulting in small business job creation.
In addition, a Martinez Administration would issue regulations based on science and pragmatism – as opposed to favoritism and patronage – so that we can have a balanced approach that lets industry thrive, while also protecting our natural resources. The choice in this election is clear, Susana Martinez will turn New Mexico around, while Diane Denish will advance the same policies that led to job loss, government growth and historic debt.”


Aggie Football Falls On The Road To Fresno State 33-10

bleedCrimson.net Report

The Aggie football team couldn't sustain the momentum from the win over in-state rival New Mexico as they fell 33-10 at Fresno State on Saturday night after falling behind 30-3 in the first half. The Aggies held Fresno State to just three second half points but the offense could not overcome the 27-point first half deficit. Kenny Turner provided the team's only touchdown as broke through the Fresno State defense from 19 yards out midway through the fourth quarter.

The Aggies allowed just 354 yards of offense and just 132 through the air but the Bulldogs would gain 222 yards on the ground including runs of 57, 30 and 38 yards for touchdown by the Bulldog running backs. Click here to read more...