Less than zero

Treasuries rose, pushing rates on the three-month bill negative for the first time, as investors gravitate toward the safety of U.S. government debt amid the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Notice when they first started selling these “securities”.

Sympathy for the devils

Swap Washington DC for Chicago and I think we’ve got a deal:

How many Americans are willing to see New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles all disappear in nuclear mushroom clouds, rather than surrender to whatever outrageous demands the terrorists make?

I suspect Thomas Sowell has absolutely no idea how many Americans would be delighted to see certain cities vanish from history. Sowell hasn’t shed any tears over the bombing of Baghdad, so why should anyone who isn’t a New Yorker or Los Angelene mind if those central sources of American decline are flattened? In fact, if we accept the assertions of the mainstream economists, their destruction and reconstruction would be a most excellent thing given the apparent dearth of large-scale stimulus projects.

Of silk and sow’s ears

Austrian economics lessons taught in real time:

More than half of all homeowners who had their loans modified to make the payments more affordable in the first half of the year are already in default again, banking regulators said Monday.

This nicely illustrates the insanity of trying to prop up the credit expansion-caused malinvestments when they go bad. Because they are not fundamentally sound, injecting more liquidity into them will only delay the inevitable default. The important thing to understand is this: the default is not the problem! It is merely the obvious consequence and the actual problem was the boom-time decision to make the bad investments. Corrections and defaults must be permitted to take place since the alternative is not no correction or default, but larger corrections and more costly defaults occurring later.

One can very seldom make a bad investment sound by simply pouring more money into it.

VPFL Week 14

For the second time in three years, the Mounds View Meerkats are the VPFL regular season champions:

74 Mounds View Meerkats (10-4-0)
67 Judean Peoples Front (6-8-0)

60 Silver Spooners (8-3-3)
42 Valders Valkyries (7-7-0)

87 Greenfield Grizzlies (6-7-1)
64 Alamo City Spartans (9-4-1)

88 Masonville Marauders (4-9-1)
74 Burns Redbeards (9-5-0)

85 Winston Reverends (5-9-0)
39 Black Mouth Curs (3-11-0)

The problem is that once more, it looks like the Piranha of the Serengeti are facing some possible matchup problems in the first round of the playoffs – yes, this is the point at which I’m seriously second-guessing the trade that swapped Peyton Manning, Frank Gore, and Marcus Colston for Kurt Warner, Clinton Portis, and DeSean Jackson. If Portis were healthy, I’d be looking great right now, but as it stands, I’m going to be dependent upon Green Bay beating up Jacksonville on the road. Which, given the 28th-ranked Jaguars defense, is hardly unthinkable, but I’d be a lot more comfortable if four of my eggs – QB, RB, WR, WR – weren’t all in that single basket.