My Last Death Threat in 2011

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I got this
email the other day:

u201CJust saw
you on CNBC. Shocked! I thought for sure I read you had hung yourself.
Well, now I have a new wish for Christmas!u201D

It was signed
kosoverh@bellsouth.net
and he was referring to a recent TV appearance I made where I was
bullish on the economy in 2012.

I don't know
a kosoverh@bellsouth.net so it was effectively anonymous. This is
why the Internet is great. I am particularly ugly when you see me
on TV. Everyone is very beautiful on TV. They always try to put
makeup on me or make me brush my hair or tuck my shirt in. Ugh.
Are you my mommy? I also had particularly big headsets on. Like
Keith Partridge in the Partridge Family. u201CI Think I Love Youu201D. You
know the song.

So its perfectly
reasonable that an anonymous person from Washington DC (I tracked
his IP address) would send me that note. He just saw an ugly person
on TV. Kill him! It's a natural survival instinct for the species.
And now, with the Internet, he can act on this natural genetic instinct
and send an anonymous email message. I'm in favor of that.

I tried to
think what else could upset him. Well a lot of people get upset
that I'm very bullish for 2012. A lot of people, both citizens and
the warlords in our own government, want America, capitalism, the
Internet, the economy, all of our established insitutions, to go
down in flames. I don't know why they want this. They think it will
be fun. Like we'll party like it's 1999. That sort of thing.

You can stop
reading here if this makes you irrationally angry for some reason.

…..

…..

I'm giving
you one more chance to go to a different page. If you go to the
top of this page and search on u201Cprostitutesu201D you will find many
fun stories.

….

Home
sales: Housing prices still stink.
Nobody should ever buy a home again
, in my opinion. The myth
of the white picket fence was invented by a trillion dollar mortgage
industry powered by an over-accelerated Federal Reserve. Prices
are down 2.8% from a year ago. But there's very good news. Inventories
are at the lowest levels since 1963. And at current demand, months
of inventory on the market are at six months, the lowest since 2006.
In fact, home sales have been up considerably the past few months.
Guess what happens in any market when supply goes down and demand
goes up: prices go up.

Corporate
profits are at an all time high. This is for three reasons.
All the companies fired people two years ago. Demand is coming back
(see below), and the Internet is actually allowing companies to
do things for free that they used to use expensive people for. What
happens when corporate profits are at an all time high?

Cash
in the bank is at an all time high: Non-banks in the S&P
500 have two trillion cash in the bank, the highest levels ever.
This cash is sitting around doing nothing. Do you know what happens
when cash is sitting around doing nothing?

Announced
Stock Buybacks are at an all time high: Since 1990 you
know who the biggest buyers of stocks are? It's not mutual funds
or retail investors. It's other companies by a factor of 4:1. Through
buybacks and mergers. Announced buybacks for 2012 has hit over $1.1
trillion, the first time this number has breached a trillion. Oh,
and guess what, the number of shares outstanding has now gone down
for three years in a row, for the first time since 1990. You know
what happens in any market when demand goes up (the stock buyback
announcements) and supply goes down? See above.

Consumer
spending is up at an all time high. How can this be? Isn't
unemployment still at 8.6%. Yes. But: A) unemployment is 1.2% lower
than it was a year ago. And B) many of the unemployed were in lower
paying jobs. I'm just the messenger here but it's the truth. Personal
incomes are actually UP 4% over the past year. Not only that but
temp jobs are up and the average hourly work week is up. Which means
full time employment is going to continue to grow, as it has been
all year.

But, you can
ask: isn't this the same problem we had before? People spend, spend,
spend, and then owe, owe, owe?

No.

(consumer
spending at an all time high)

Household
debt obligations are the lowest since 1993. Mortgages,
rents, car loans/leases and other debt services added together divided
by income after taxes is the lowest since 1993.

But
what about Europe? I know this blog might have European
readers. In fact, we might even have readers from Greece. Hello
out there! But do you really think a beach resort in the Mediterranean
is going to have an effect on the US economy? Greece's economy to
the Eurozone is equivalent to Rhode Island to the US economy. I
live 40 minutes from Rhode Island and I don't think I've ever even
set foot in that state.

Well, what
about Italy and, god forbid, France! Voulez Vouz Coucher!?

Read
the rest of the article

January
3, 2012

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