Wednesday, April 28, 2010

That's funny, I feel the exact same way about Tila Tequila

80 comments:

TJ said...

http://westleyrollin.ytmnd.com/

Dan said...

who had the short little stubby thumb?
i think tia has his hands and vice versa - look how long that finger is...good for probing those meat wallets i guess.

zman said...

Au revoir JaMarcus.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=5141392

Geoff said...

Did any of you gents who work in the financial sector watch the Senate hearings yesterday? I'm just curious...because my only take away from that who dog and pony was that all of the Senators demonstrated a fundamental failure to understand the markets, products and processes they were trying to demonize. Am I crazy?

zman said...

Since when did Senators actually have to understand anything?

Geoff said...

Eh, some of them are pretty smart guys and gals...but yes, that's the minority.

Dan said...

geoff - was in my car for about 7 of the 10 or so hrs of testimony and listened to nothing but. no, you're not crazy. i found it odd / interesting/funny/stupid / inexplainable why no one, including and especially levin, seemed to get tutor'd up on the roles the sachs' of the world play.

Geoff said...

Yeah, Levin's questions about derivatives had nothing to do with any specific practice by Goldman. He simply finds the derivatives market and the way in which the client/broker relationship operates within that market to be unappealing, which again...has nothing to do with Goldman specifically. Levin and others made it sound like Goldman hatched this derivatives idea one day and it was the biggest ponzi scheme ever. The other thing being missed here: this whole scandal is about a bunch of millionaire investors who lost their shirts to another group of millionaire brokers. There's no little guy here.

zman said...

Point of order. rob is the little guy here.

Geoff said...

15-Love, Zoltan

Dave said...

i heard a snippet of the hearings on NPR-- the problem is similar to the mystery of what happened in enron-- legality versus ethics. goldman was just taking advantage of looser mortgage laws enacted during clinton and bush to try to help people-- but i think there is a frustration in the fact that the market was once a way for real businesses to generate capital, and shorting funds that may have been designed to fail (and which goldman employees repeatedly called "crap") is so far removed from that, so there's going to be some regulations to try to make it more transparent, but then they'll figure out some other way to create risky markets for people to gamble in. though they are probably right in a legal sense, they are going to be made a moral example. the more i read about enron, the harder it was to find outright crime and fraud.

Dan said...

and on the "shorts" - they were lambasted all f'n about "the big short"...well, if it weren't for the shorts, guess what - goldman could very well have crumbled and been one of the failures. the move to short as they did, could arguably have been applauded.

at the end of the night, levin who had a hard-on for blankfein, was dogging him for taking 2.8B from AIG which owed them the 2.8B - the 2.8B had come from bailout money - taxpayer money. if the govt had decided not to bailout aig, then goldman would have received the 2.8b from an insurance policy...but only if aig were left to fail. levin would not let this go - just berating him for taking the 2.8 that aig owed them due to it being bailout money - i would have had a very hard time not asking levin "would would you have had us do?"

Dave said...

i think it's general frustration with a system that appears to be complex, chaotic, and inscrutable-- but is "too big too fail." (like whitney)

Dan said...

tila's finger is too big to fail. that's not very classy. i apologize.

zman said...

I may have this wrong, so please correct me if necessary, but in order to have mortgage-backed securities, you have to have mortgages. To get more mortgages with which to back the securities, banks started giving mortgages to people with bad credit and/or giving out mortgages that were too large for the mortgagee to pay based on his/her income. They had to "feed the beast" in order to continue to crank out new investment products, so they kept coming up with new ways to get mortgages, many of which were total dogshit.

So ... if you're involved with knowingly doling out and buying up doomed mortgages and then shorting the securities that they back, you're double dipping. Not only do you make money on the short, you make money on the mortgage default. I'm not sure that this is kosher.

Dave said...

the problem is, if it's legal, then it makes perfect sense to hedge the craziness of all these mortgages with the credit default swaps and the derivative options-- if it's legal it would be stupid NOT too, though it is an ethical dilemma. why do we need mortgage derivatives? it used to be that banks issued them and it took a long time to make your money and you wanted to be sure you got paid (but course the problem was if you were a minority you might be discriminated against)

got to teach now . . .

TJ said...

As some of you know, I work pretty close to the Verizon Center, so I fully expected to start seeing some Caps jerseys and fans even now around lunchtime...

What I did not expect to see were four shitfaced cockmastered Canadians wandering around my bldg in official Habs jerseys, all drinking mind you and one guy even wearing the beer helmet.

Sadly, I don't think these fellas will be making the game once DC's finest run into them...

Dave said...

cockmastered?

TJ said...

http://bit.ly/9kEm6e

Dave said...

wow. i had a hard time stopping my watching of westley rollin'. that's dangerous.

Dennis said...

Not sure who made the comment about Enron regarding legality vs. ethics....but, you may want to read up a little more on that debacle (The Smartest Guys in the Room (either the book or documentary) is a great start - those guys were criminals and their actions undeniably illegal. Most of the leaders of that A-Bomb are serving lengthy prison sentances or have killed themselves to avoid them....

As to the Goldman Ball Sachs situation, carry on...

TJ said...

Nice work Wash Post:
http://bit.ly/dAdZz2

TJ said...

Iowa State's new coach?

The Mayor, Fred Hoiberg.

Dave said...

i read and watched "the smartest guys in the room" and the doc really tries to find people to blame-- the book is a little different, but if you want to read a different point of view, read malcolm gladwell's essay "open secrets" (which he took flak for because it reevaluates the myth of the evil of enron. enron certainly did some unseemly stuff, and some illegal stuff with created entities to hide debt-- but the arbitrage opportunities they used in california were what everyone was doing, and though unethical, they were to some extent legal, and the gov't gave them mark to merket ccounting-- an undergrad college class examined their book sa s a project and couldn't figure out how they were making money-- so the information was available-- but no one looked closely enough, like with the sub-prime mortgages, until the ship had sank. i'm not defending them-- they were greedy, reckless, and incompetent, but they were a product of the kind of markets and financial products that we have now.

zman said...

It seems like an investment house like Goldman has some fiduciary duty to investors so they can't knowingly and purposely make doomed products, short the products with the firm's money or their own personal money, and simultaneously sell them to clients as a sound investment. The law generally disfavors fraud.

Dave said...

but (and i'm just playing devil's advocate here, i kind of agree with you) did they know they were doomed?

if they really knew the sub-prime collapse was coming, they would have made quite a bit more money than they made-- although i think they made a lot b/c there were signs that the housing bubble was ending-- and they would have done more than just create a vehicle for paulson to short the housing market . . . or did they do more? i'm way out of my depth here-- i teach creative writing.

zman said...

I got a D in undergrad economics and I don't read the paper or watch the news so I know nothing substantively useful. Something just seems fishy in all this and good lawyers make hay with fish. Like Jesus did with the bread.

rob said...

as the little guy, i agree that the immediate impacts of the scandals involve a bunch of rich guys taking money from another, but the scale and networked nature of the deals unquestionably impacted the entire economy. yet one more reason why we should turn the whole system over to robert reich, the little guy's little guy.

Dan said...

z-dawg - to your 12:08 post...it took a while before goldman and others out there saw the writing on the wall as it relates to the pending doom the mbs's were going to bring with them, but even then there were plenty of people that were still betting on them. with more uncertainty came more shorting, but it was simply to manage the risk/hedge, which is very common, no matter the security. and to dave's point - there were certainly some things that may have been unethical, but it doesn't seem as if anything done was illegal. you can't hate the player here, only the game. and there should have been another few dozen people getting their rectums checked alongside the goldman fellas...

Dave said...

my point exactly. don't be a "player hater."

i don't hate baseball players, i just hate the game. but i do love soccer fashion.

and if the democrats get their way and regulate our derivatives-- which they should, it's got nothing to do with the original intention of the market and decreases stability-- then some other country is going to sell them and we're going to be invested in them that way, so what can you do? if the housing market goes back up, i'm selling our house and renting a cabin in montana (don't tell my wife about this plan until after i secure permission to go to jazzfest next year).

rob said...

jazzfest 2011 is shaping up quite nicely. i'm going to short rational behavior by gtb attendees. gonna make a shitload.

Dave said...

hey!

what is this bullshit-- jerry and have been downgraded from "friends of gheorghe" to the much colder "what gheorghe is reading"?

what did we do to deserve this?

rob said...

teejay said there was no way you'd notice.

TJ said...

Get over it. At least I bumped you to the top. There's changes coming to G:TB, slowly but surely. Get on board pal.

Dave said...

my kids have made a hotwheels track in a horseshoe shape so they can crash cars into each other at high speed, so i've been able to do a lot of commenting . . .

TJ said...

An Earnhardt Special, eh?

Dan said...

i did notice the tweet icon below each post now. is that one of these changes you speak of?
i am a tweeting virgin. not much tweeting out here on the prairie.

TJ said...

Sorry Mr. Burns if we confused you.

Mark said...

Have we decided what weekend we want to hit Jazzfest in 2011? Since i'm getting married in late February of that year and (most likely) going on my honeymoon the week after I need to plan ahead and use vacation time creatively to make the G:TB Summit/Jazzfest a reality. And I really, really want to make it a reality.

Dave said...

i can only go if we go the second weekend, because the first is my spring break and i'll be with my family. how early do we have to buy plane tickets and stuff?

TJ said...

I'm in for 2011, any time, any week. And Mark, do we get a group invite for the wedding, or individual invites?

Dan said...

mark - hopefully the groomsmen will be in black tuxes? i'd like to avoid having to rent if at all possible. when's the next shower?

TJ said...

If I were the Caps, I'd score early, and often...or they will be choking this series away like the spineless bums they really are. Hey Mike Green, you forget how to use a stick? Alexander Semen, how about unloading on the net tonight?

TJ said...

It is so loud at Verizon that every sixth word in Closed Captioning is "[Inaudible]".

rob said...

no tom poti for the caps. commence excuse-making.

rob said...

lemmy!

TJ said...

Someone call Jerry and get ahold of that Halak-smith he referenced the other night.

rob said...

halaked and haloaded

rob said...

smrt play, mike green. smrt.

rob said...

at least the penalty kill was solid

TJ said...

Yep. Perfect. Nice work Caps.

TJ said...

Halak, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels has stopped 101 of the last 103 shots he's faced.

rob said...

has the caps under halak and key

zman said...

Selma Halak has two smoking barrels.

TJ said...

I'm a much bigger fan of his sister, Selma Halak.

TJ said...

This is why we have a "Zman and the Teej" pilot...

Shlara said...

I'm a nervous wreck about tonight's game...

TJ said...

So, what you're saying is we need to put you on shalakdown?

Mark said...

I think I'll go with a group invite to my wedding. In the form of a G:TB post of course.

Shlara said...

what I need is for the Caps to score an f-ing goal or two

TJ said...

Hi Caps. I'm a sad, drunk, lonely power play opportunity. Please rothliesberger me.

Shlara said...

The power play has confounded the Caps on both ends.

ARGH!!!

Shlara said...

AND, someone needs to punch someone.

I'm ready to punch someone myself...

zman said...

I envision Shlara in her living room, busily reenacting various Ed Norton scenes from Fight Club.

Geoff said...

Every team I root for shits all over themselves when it truly matters.

That waived off goal...blue balls.

Geoff said...

I have to imagine its been a long time since the Caps were shut out this year.

Shlara said...

shit

TJ said...

I haven't seen a choke job this bad since Michael Hutchence.

Geoff said...

Boudreau fired?

Shlara said...

The fans need to get LOUD now

TJ said...

Hey Garth, game on...

TJ said...

We deserve at least one OT.

Geoff said...

That penalty? Called by Gary Bettman.

Shlara said...

unbelievable

TJ said...

Hi '94 Sonics!

TJ said...

Let me beat the DC media to this complete overreaction...

The Caps are a bunch of choking dogs who lack veteran leadership and solid coaching. Out with Alfred Hitchcock.
Do one of those goofy trades with Mike Green where Washington gets three 2011 picks and a Swede to be named later.

Ovie is too much celeb and not enuff star.

rob said...

i blame vinny cerrato

TJ said...

+1 rob

Jerry said...

It's hockey. It's a surprising result, but this stuff happens. Detroit lost in the 1st round a few years ago and they had more regular season points than the Caps and a ton more playoff experience.

Jerry said...

And the Goldman Sachs hearings were an embarrassment.