On Monday, I asked what the letters GM stood for — using “Government Motors” or “Gimme Money” as examples. Readers responded with 100s of examples of possible other names that worked well.

In fact, there were quite a few fantastic suggestions, which I culled down to a Letterman style short list of my favorites:


Top 10 Things the Letters “GM” Stands For

10. Got More?

9. Goals missed

8. Giant Mess


6. Government Mooch

5. Grossly Mismanaged

4. Got Mechanic?

3. Gasguzzlin’ Monsters

2. Goodbye Michigan!

And the number thing the letters”G” and “M” stands for:

1. Gambled & Missed


Honorable Mentions after the jump . . .

As we get closer to publication, maybe we will run some contests like this with Bailout Nation related swag as prizes.

Generic Mediocrity

Grotesque Machines

Goldman Missing
(that’s why they haven’t gotten a blank check)

Got Mylanta?

Gone (in 3) months

Gross Mismanagement

Guaranteed Mistake

Graft & Malfeasance

Government Masturbation

Good-bye Markets!

Gargantuan Moneypit

Gigantic Mess

Glaring Mistakes

Grand Mugging

Gullible Morons

Gargantuan Mistake

Genuflect Motors

Good-bye Money!

Greenspan’s Mistake

Gone Mad

Gotta Move-on

Gluttonous Moochers

Great Mistake

Government Mule

Category: Markets

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

77 Responses to “Top 10 Things the Letters “GM” Stands For”

  1. Gary says:

    BR: While you were in LA it was pretty much an all day free for all forum here, which was fairly interesting despite its chaotic manner.

    Usually you steer the discussion in the direction you want, but to take advantage of the unexpected I’d like to make a suggestion: what about a *daily* open mike thread where we can say stuff unrelated to your posts?
    Try it for maybe a week, see how it goes.

    What do you guys think, would such a thing be worth it?

  2. zitidiamond says:

    For me, GM will always be Gary Moore, the man Miss Lucille Ball married after she called it quits with Desi “Ricky Ricardo” Arnaz.

  3. batmando says:

    @ Gary
    I’d rather see an open thread devoted to the day’s market, as comments on the market often get spread around the threads on several of BR’s posts during the day.

  4. leftback says:

    @ bat: Yes that would be useful. Although remember: It’s All Connected.

    We are taking a very hard look at SPX 850 resistance here.
    If we see a screamer up to SPX 880 I will get massively short. That is a huge technical level.

  5. Outlier says:

    Better than an open thread would be to set up a forum using something like Vanilla or Scoop where people can talk amongst themselves. There is a nice small but well informed community here so it’d be a natural transition. Keep a guarded but not locked door policy and it could be a killer forum.

  6. DiggidyDan says:

    You gonna try for another patented Elby Top to correspond with the Elby Bottom?

    That sell in may and reflation stuff we talked about that day is working out decent for me right now, Still long ADM, BHP, BP or CVX and PCU. GM or Chrysler bankruptcy and fallout from job losses, credit card default, and arm resets i still think we drop again to the ultimate bottom of 474 sometime beginning October.

  7. DiggidyDan says:

    That was @Lefty BTW. And the rest of my moola is currently in TIP and RMMXX, 33.333333333333% allocated to each (at the time, now its more tip and stocks)

  8. Super-Anon says:

    Rough times for all those people who shorted tech stocks in early March.

  9. Marcus Aurelius says:

    From the Onion:

    Hush Falls Over Prison Population As Madoff Stabs Cellmate In Throat

  10. AndrewShaw says:

    xlf has been off its highs most of the day, are they now waiting for their next bailout?

  11. Super-Anon says:

    Getting tempting to pull the trigger on some QID…

  12. DiggidyDan says:

    I hear ya, but I don’t have the cojones to do that with all the gubmint interference.

  13. bubba says:

    this yahoo headline should be a pretty good sign that this bear rally is nearing its end….

    “Wall Street rallies: ‘Everyone is in a buying mood’”


  14. MRegan says:


    Bullish or bullsh^t?

    As for a forum, I come to BR’s blog for his comments and for the thoughtful comments of individuals smarter than I (and to exchange recipes- you all suck at that BTW) but the fractured nature of the format does derail some very good back and forthing. Maybe a recurring daily post called Market Chatter could serve that purpose.

    Here’s a killer recipe:

    Pisco Sauer (yeah- old school spelling)


    Go ahead and use Chilean pisco if you hate everything that good and holy in this life- otherwise: Ocucaje, Queirolo, Botija, Jimenez, Biondi all fine. Or go to Lunahuaná and buy a bottle of any artisan producer in the area. Make sure you see them dig up.

  15. AndrewShaw says:


    I have 5 and 7 year old kids, so heres a great recipe for us that do have little ones:

    9 cups water
    1 cup non-ultra Dawn soap
    2 oz KY jelly
    4 oz glycerine(avail. in drug stores)
    Fills about a 1/2 gallon container.

    Ultimate Bubbles for summer! Get out and live a little, I know I need to.

  16. Super-Anon says:

    All the major indexes soared about 4 percent on Thursday as optimism grew following more signs that the economy is on the mend.

    Haha… we see the same sort of articles ever time.

    Never mind the accelerating house price declines or the gruesome jobless numbers.

    Those things aren’t important.

  17. MR,

    that ‘recipe’ delineates everything Wrong w/ AXP..

    pasteurized Egg Whites? F*** them!

    “Grappa” as a ‘substitute’? That’s too clueless..

    I’m surprised recipes for ‘Milquetoast’ aren’t their ‘Most Popular’.

    past that, pisco sours are a good idea, Summer beckons, and all..

    do us a favor post your own ‘Recipe’, you know what they are, others should too..

  18. here comes the finale – up, up and away

  19. Andrew,

    what do you use for a frame?

    also, can substitute Mineral Oil, for glycerin/KY combo? might cut costs, appreciably..

  20. MRegan says:

    Thanks AndrewShaw- I appreciate the wholesomeness of your recipe and I withdraw the whole ‘you suck’ invective in your case- the rest of you, well, how about G-D some pointers on vichyssoise!
    As for the drink recipe, I aspire to be the premier distributor of Angostura bitters in the Des Moines, Iowa and I am starting aviral campaign here. So drink up.

    Also, looks like KOP tweren’t so bad.

  21. AndrewShaw says:


    new to all that, but I have a bubble machine from the gazillion bubble company, have plans for one of the rope setups like you see on the internet/youtube.

    glycerin is like $4ish and Ky can be the storebrand for about $3, but the gazillion bottle is really expensive, so it didn’t seem too bad.


    which way is up? do you see a sell-off or a higher high?

  22. MRegan says:


    I just grabbed the first thing I find in English. Yeah, this all kind of performance art, part of my therapy to get out, meet people and minimally put them off.

    My own recipe regarding pisco is:

    1. Go to Lima
    2. Go to Barranco- not Barranca, Barranco (frickin’ A, do not go to Barranca)
    3. Look for ‘bajo el puente’
    4. Find Toto’s, ask for Don Jorge
    5. Say ‘pisco, por favor’
    6. Bring cot or sleeping bag, spare liver

    But the deal is lime (green) not lemon. As for sugar, not granules, you need a jarabe. Make yer own sugar syrup with sugar, water and heat. One small tip, put a piece(s) of dried fruit, in the pisco, raisins are ok, apricot is better, not too much and just leave it there.

  23. shaw-

    there is in all likelihood another push up before we close. i do feel though that tomorrow will start the next leg down – perhaps not to another new low, but 750 would be in the cards for sure.

  24. AndrewShaw says:

    I just stand amazed how this market can rip everyone to shreds.

    Well, back to packing for the machine gun shoot at Knob Creek Kentucky. Driving all night tonight. A more satisfying way to burn money (than the financial market gambling)is to rent a big gun for even a few magazines worth.

    Never been there, but going with a friend that has. Sounds fun.

  25. leftback says:

    I have some FAZ and expect to add more into the close. This is the first time I have contemplated putting on really significant short positions since this rally began. The NFP number tomorrow and the start of earnings season are excuse enough, but there are new red flags appearing in the MBS and CMBS markets all the time. This ain’t over.

    Macro Man has a few interesting comments today:

  26. MR–

    ol’ Jorge finally got promoted, eh? good for Him~

    also, I’d like to meet the cunning SOB that sold the ‘cained peep on Lemons, Mr. ‘Buffalo Wings’ has Nothing over on him..

    the + with making your own Sugar Syrup is, that if you have any ‘leftover’, you can turn into Caramel, in a hurry~

  27. MRegan says:

    Here’s a question for the reflationistas:

    Will ‘reflating’ the economy acelerate asset deflation?

    As to the various camps, I am agnostic, in the sense of no ‘gnosis’, hell, I can barely stand the anagnorisis I experience every day.

  28. Andrew,

    I hear ya, the M.O. is U$D~2/pint..FFR


    re: KOP that covered-call write would have smoked.. ~1.42/14.38 = ~10%

    and, w/this : “Angostura bitters “, I’m surprised AXP Pub. wasn’t rec’d Lea & Perrins as a ‘substitute’..

  29. MR–

    when going here: anagnorisis

    leave breadcrumbs..


  30. call me ahab says:

    Hey- I got an honorable mention- I am somebody

    I like the idea posted previously of a “market action” thread- in that vein-

    does anyone have a read on UDN- doesn’t appear to have huge volume- but I am thinking the USD ultimate path is down-

    any observations appreciated.

  31. MRegan says:

    Lea&Perrins, very funny. As for anagnorisis- I was camuflaging a serious question in confusing palaver. Sometimes I want to leave Hansel and Gretel in der Wald.

  32. karen says:

    ahab, you get a k-1 partnership form with udn, unfortunately. they make doing your taxes less fun… maybe shorting UUP is an option for you.

  33. AndrewShaw says:

    walked back by the macbook and saw this on Mish:

    “Citibank to Investors: We Suggest You Bet Against Us”

    per Mish, Citi is recommending the $8.00 xlf puts for May. He links to a Bloomberg article from March 31.


    They are crafty bastards aren’t they? What to make of this?

    Mish : “That Citigroup says it is a “good decision” is probably all you need to know that it’s not. “

  34. MRegan says:


    If the reflation gambit ‘works’, and the rest the world is unable to substitute the USD for a basket something or other, as commodity prices rise, won’t the demand for dollars rise as well? Also, are dollars ‘disappearing’ faster than the FedTreas can conjure them? What a conundrum. (snark)

    I guess, I don’t understand how any of this can work. It’s as if sloshing money around can replace productive activity. There is a parasite on the host which is killing it by re-injecting poisoned dollars into its circulatory system.

  35. Whammer says:

    BR, what, no swearing any more?? Comment regarding silent G and M deleted……

    I’m going to need to throw down with some recipes, I guess…….

  36. leftback says:

    Karen said: “they make doing your taxes less fun…”

    What would make doing taxes more fun, Karen? Mine are an absolute nightmare.
    Here at Schadenfreude we think the Leftback Rally may be drawing to a close. The market is overbought.
    We have been raising cash and have a few short ETFs on.

  37. DiggidyDan says:

    My theory relies upon the assumption that the dollar will fall in value from the printing presses and increase in available money supply, so we have to rely on supply and demand to calculate what will continue to be stable or rise in price. In actuality, I think we will have a bifurcated economy in which things that have a somewhat constant demand or can control the supply, ie food, energy, oil, basic first produced resources (like metals, timber, etc), and perhaps medicine will result in staying up or rising with the devaluation of the dollar, and other things that do not have the constant demand, such as housing, discretionary consumer products, capital expenditures, etc. will fall. It would be good to look at the factors behind elasticity of demand in evaluating any asset you wish to hold currently, imho.

    Because the US Dollar is a Fiat Currency, the government can do anything they want including the recent bailouts and “quantitative easing”. Basically, they are saying they don’t care about the current deficit they are racking up and skyrocketing national debt, because they are going to print more money to devalue the currency relative to the debt outstanding. This might work for a while until producing countries and resource rich countries have the ability to stop it and force the issue of an international reserve currency to replace the US Dollar as the world’s form of money. Therefore, what the government is trying to do is covertly tax the public and screw all creditors in the process, while keeping the whole game from crashing.

    “By a continuing process of inflation, government can confiscate, secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens.”
    John Maynard Keynes (English economist, journalist, and financier, 1883-1946)

    “Inflation is the one form of taxation that can be imposed without legislation.”
    Milton Friedman quotes (American Economist, b.1912)

  38. aitrader says:

    So where’s my t-shirt?


  39. leftback says:

    “I think we will have a bifurcated economy”

    Hot Diggidy Dan, I think you are on to something. This has been a Leftback theme, the bifurcation.
    Why only last night, I was expounding on economic bifurcation to The Twins.

    As an example, I suggested “BUY Kellogg’s Corn Flakes and SELL Victoria’s Secret”.
    They didn’t seem convinced though.

  40. call me ahab says:

    Thanks Karen- I knew it was an Invesco product so was unsure- appreciate your input- have never set up a margin account with my brokerge so maybe that is something i need to look into.

    mregan Says:

    “It’s as if sloshing money around can replace productive activity.”

    crack me up- money created out of thin air no less- I have been doing some research and there appears to be a few folks indicating the $ will most likely start going down from here on out- with all the USD floating around and deficits where they are it would seem to make sense-

    any other input out there?

  41. dead hobo says:

    leftback Said:
    April 2nd, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    We have been raising cash and have a few short ETFs on.

    You’re a good man. Thank you. Let’s hope your good works are imitated by others.

  42. DiggidyDan says:

    If i lose my job can i come work for SAM?

  43. karen says:

    speaking of money out of thin air.. read “How to Pay for Everything: Monetize the Air.”


    ahab, i don’t use margin either… i’m a KISS girl.

    USO is another one with the k-1 schedule.

  44. leftback says:

    Is the XLF chart toppy or what? This could be a great short.

    Karen. I always suspected that you like to KISS.
    How are those US$ candles looking?

  45. RF says:

    Give Marrywanna

  46. call me ahab says:

    DiggidyDan Says:

    “Therefore, what the government is trying to do is covertly tax the public and screw all creditors in the process, while keeping the whole game from crashing”

    quite succinct- I agree- your prognosis on the dollar is my impression as well.

    @ leftback-

    what etf’s- being nosy here

  47. Urkel says:

    Guantanamo for Managers

  48. call me ahab says:

    also- RIMM reports soon- what’s the consensus?

  49. wunsacon says:

    “Ever dance with the devil in the pail moonlight?”

    When the USD — the main global reserve currency — started increasing in value (thanks to the debt writeoffs), the music stopped. Everyone started hoarding cash and looked for a place to sit down. Well, Chuck Prince might say the music is playing again. It’s time to get up and dance.

  50. leftback says:

    Git Mo’ ($)

    what etf’s: FAZ and QID. The Leftback Rally is ending. Alas, we barely knew ye.

    Almost all earnings will be complete dog poop. Including RIMM.
    (GDP probably btw. -5 and -7%, remember? Earnings growth???).

    Diggidy Dan: There is always room at Schadenfreude for bifurcating reflationists.

  51. MRegan says:

    To DiggedyDan and ahab-

    thanks, I guess I agree. Any notions on a time frame? And also, can they print more dollars than are disappearing?

    As for UUP, as a proxy for the dollar is it a good idea to use a mediated thing, doesn’t this security amplify risk? Why not just acquire or dispose of USD? It seems like there are too many unknowables concerning the USD. What if oil plunges in the short term?

  52. leftback says:

    If oil plunges, the $ will rise….

  53. leftback says:

    When you start to see jackass headlines like this, you start thinking about selling:

    New signs emerge that recession may be near bottom http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090402/ap_on_bi_go_ec_fi/economy

  54. call me ahab says:


    “Why not just acquire or dispose of USD? It seems like there are too many unknowables concerning the USD. ”

    true- unfortunatley I am not a Forex trader- guess you could purchase other denominations- but what? Euro not too firm either.

    leftback Says:

    “If oil plunges, the $ will rise….”

    true- if it plunges- more of chance for it to go up I would think

  55. on other facets:

    “The bill, authored by Sens. John Rockefeller, D-W.Va., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, moves cybersecurity authority to an as-yet-unnamed cyber adviser who will report to the president. The wide-ranging measures also include sweeping new regulations to plug the vulnerabilities in both government and the private sector that could leave the nation open to cyber attacks or data theft.

    In fact, the new provisions go beyond extending security rules to all government agencies, government contractors and software vendors selling to those groups. They would also be stretched to the private sector’s so-called “critical infrastructure” companies–those typically deemed crucial for national security.

    But given that the words “critical infrastructure” aren’t defined in the bill, Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) President Leslie Harris argues the new regulations could cover not just water distribution, the power grid and banks, but also telecommunications, Internet service providers and even Internet application companies like Google ( GOOG – news – people ) and Microsoft ( MSFT – news – people ). …”

    sadly, Not an April Fool’s joke..

  56. call me ahab says:

    also – on RIMM- sure it will be bad but how bad? As long as it is not AS bad as people fear then that’s looked at like a win

  57. DiggidyDan says:

    Yeah, i don’t know what to tell you either. I’m just looking at the forest. The individual trees that will be safe I can’t pick as well as I want in this environment, so i’m just trying to preserve purchasing power. As for timing, it’s a shot in the dark, but I will stick with my Wild Voodoo Guess of the Reckoning leading to S&P 474 beginning in October. I am just an armchair economist in general, so listen to pros or your gut for what you should do, not me.

  58. leftback says:

    Look at the daily NAZZ chart if you want to see a head-and-shoulders formation.
    That bodes ill for tomorrow. You really think RIMM and AMAT had a blowout quarter?

    Wonder what AT is up to? I am doing my best with the TA, but AT and Karen are the real chart-watchers.

  59. Barry, how could you miss this one?

    Golf Masters

  60. Onlooker from Troy says:

    “leftback Says:
    When you start to see jackass headlines like this, you start thinking about selling…”

    Yeah, my feelings exactly. I’ve been selling this thing all the way up. I’m running out of longs to sell. Keeping a core position of pipeline MLPs, a conservative play that captures some reflation in a non-risky way, positions yielding over 12%.

    But hey, Ken Lewis says the recession is “getting close to the bottom.” What more could you want!

    The market knows all, right?

  61. leftback says:

    I am calling a top on this rally. The Leftback Top. You heard it here.

  62. Onlooker from Troy says:

    It’s seeming more and more likely that Friday’s payroll numbers could show over 700K jobs cut. Surely that number would be jarring enough to throw cold water on this rally, no?

  63. leftback says:

    No need for -700K. The earnings reports and the technicals will be enough for a sell-off tomorrow.

  64. gregh says:

    The Leftback Top? – sorry, not yet. My market timing is horrible – always a few days early and today I sold everything but some nflx which i haven’t defined a stop for

  65. leftback says:

    I was waiting for XLF 10 and SPX 880.
    We may see it, but I had too much risk on, and don’t mind missing A Few Dollars More.

    Earnings start Monday, and we just bid up the P without knowing the E.
    Just sayin’…

  66. Onlooker from Troy says:

    Another reason I don’t trust this rally. Dr. Hussman (Hussman Funds) has not gone for it. He’s still tightly hedged against the downside. He’s got quite a record over the last 15 yrs or so (8+ with the funds), so he’s not just another blow hard with nothing on the line or a long only fund pumper. He’s also got a good chunk of my money so he better be right! :)

  67. I am calling a top on this rally. The Leftback Top. You heard it here.

    that looks like The Call.

    Let the (new) Day Begin~


  68. leftback says:

    The chances of my making The Call at the bottom and the top would seem to be extremely small.

    But I have made a good chunk on the Way Up from 666.79 to 845.61 intra-day today (+179.82; >25%)
    - and I am not smoking Magic Mushrooms one day longer than necessary, Mark.
    We’ll leave that to the tools on CNBC.

    As BR has opined here many many times, monster 4 and 5% up days are features of Bear market rallies.
    and we all know how those end, don’t we children?
    BTW, RIMM was up big but that was Q4 earnings – Before The Deluge and the Dead Banks Walking.

  69. Todd says:

    Just not enough info out to make a call for me. We’ve entered the stage where bad is good and good is bad, unless you don’t really care then it is all goo, or bad.

    After Sunday’s action for GM, The clock is ticking for real economic impacting actions taking place. It could be the pivot point that the govt can’t back stop.

  70. As BR has opined here many many times, monster 4 and 5% up days are features of Bear market rallies.
    and we all know how those end, don’t we children?

    yep, bad news for ‘Goldilocks’~

    this, recent, Rally would make David Copperfield look like an amateur.

  71. DiggidyDan says:

    We’ll see if this is the Official Elby Top at 845.61. I hope not yet, still long on some stuff I want to get out of from earlier catching the knife trades before i came up with the bifurcated economy reflation theory. Where’s AT when ya need him?

    If you do end up getting both the bottom and top of the Bear Market Rally called in real time I will be thoroughly impressed. What is more impressive, calling the tops and bottoms in real time or predicting the future like Steve Barry? I tend to go with calling realtime trades as being more impressive because I can’t do it most of the time. I tip my hat to ya.

  72. fully diluted says:

    haha! those are great! sorry, but I have to add one more …
    Garbage Made-whole

  73. Darkness says:

    Darn it, I didn’t get mine in.

    better luck next tiMe, thanks for playinG

    Oh, wait. Different company.

  74. plowking says:

    Generous Motors the mark of negligence. That was a frequently used line around the Oldsmobile shop I worked at in the 80′s. The mark of excellence was GM’s slogan during the 60′s. If you didn’t work at a dealership, you wouldn’t understand the generous part. I will try to explain, the Vega, Oldsmobile Diesel, rack & pinion steering on most FWD cars in the 80’s,Cadilliac HT 4100 engine, etc, etc. They gave away a lot because of bad product, cutting corners and shoddy engineering.

  75. CPJ13 says:

    Sweet! Made the cut ;)

  76. CPJ13 says:

    #2 – I’m gunning for #1 on the next list that gets published, whoever you are.

  77. [...] Top 10 Things the Letters “GM” Stands For (April 2nd, 2009) [...]