Posts filed under “Really, really bad calls”

Why Obama’s Poll Numbers Are Plummetting

The political buzz today is all about the President’s falling approval ratings. He has now fallen faster than President Bush did (prior to 09/11).

The simple solution for the White House: Stop jerking around with Financial Reform. When there is high unemployment, people don’t want to see bailed out bankers making a killing. Fix what was wrong with the system, what led us down the path to disaster.

As noted in these pages back in September, the brain trust around Obama made a terrible tactical error by tackling Health Care before they fixed Wall Street. (See: Tactical Error: Health Care vs Finance Regulatory Reform). The record low approval ratings during his presidency reflect that.

Unless Obama wants to lose one or both Houses in 2010, he best shake things up.

My advice?

Put Paul Volcker in charge of Financial Reform.

IT WILL SAVE YOUR PRESIDENCY.

’nuff said . . .

Category: Politics, Really, really bad calls

THE TIGER (with apologies to William Blake)

A hedge fund manager in Tokyo sends this along: > Tiger, Tiger bonking bright in the fleshpots of the night what immortal eye or hand could restore your tarnished brand? On what porn star’s breasts and thighs, burnt the fire of your eyes on what course did your ball run as you sunk a hole in one? You always looked…Read More

Category: Humor, Really, really bad calls

Volcker’s anti-Geithner, anti-Summers World Tour

“Bankers and regulators have not come anywhere close to responding with necessary vigor” to the worst economic crisis in 70 years. There is a lot of evidence that financial weaknesses brought us to the brink of a great depression . . . The proposed changes are like a dimple.” -Paul A. Volcker, Dec. 8. at…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Credit, Really, really bad calls, Regulation

The Folly Of Economic Forecasts

> Interesting discussion on one of my favorite subjects — The Folly Of Forecasts — on NPR with Chicago/Austrian economist Russ Roberts, now at George Mason University. click here for audio > Previously: Apprenticed Investor: The Folly of Forecasting Barry Ritholtz TheStreet.com, June 07, 2005 http://www.thestreet.com/story/10226887/apprenticed-investor-the-folly-of-forecasting.html Source: The Folly Of Economic Forecasts NPR, December 7,…Read More

Category: Analysts, Economy, Really, really bad calls

WSJ: Are Humans Responsible for Climate Change?

Wow, the results of this WSJ poll was surprising: > chart courtesy of WSJ > And they teed up the poll with this description: This decade is on track to become the warmest since records began in 1850, and 2009 could rank among the top-five warmest years, the U.N. weather agency reported on the second…Read More

Category: Really, really bad calls, UnScience

Michael Boskin on “The Obama Crash”

They never seem to learn, do they? The idealogues who use the ups and downs of markets to critique political figures. These, rigid, rabid partisans care not the least about your investing dollars; rather, the hardcore political junkies are more than happy to lose you money, so long as they can score political blood in…Read More

Category: Politics, Really, really bad calls

We Don’t Know How Black Friday Sales Were Yet

Today, the WSJ ran this patently incorrect headline (which many TV stations dutifully (mis)reported: Black Friday Spending Rose Slightly Preliminary sales data showed shoppers spent $10.66 billion on Black Friday. That’s 0.5% more than last year. The figures were compiled by ShopperTrak RCT Corp., a Chicago research firm that tracks sales at more than 50,000…Read More

Category: Consumer Spending, Data Analysis, Really, really bad calls

Fox News (Chicago) Makes the Best. Pie Chart. Ever.

Fair & Balanced? Not exactly. Mathematically competent? Not one tiny bit. > Hat tip Flowing Data ~~~ Update: Here is the Video (Nov 23)

Category: Financial Press, Mathematics, Politics, Really, really bad calls, Television

Site of the Day: Innumeracy.com

> Some good learnin’ here: This web site stems from a personal interest in critical thinking and is a collection of links to articles and sites pertaining to numeracy and critical thinking. Links should be good for at least the date posted. After the posting date, link reliability depends on the policy of the linked…Read More

Category: Mathematics, Really, really bad calls

Gramm: Glass Steagall Repeal Irrelevant

Phil Gramm, the former Republican Senator from Texas who co-wrote the act that undid Glass-Steagall, has our DQotD: > “I’ve never seen any evidence to substantiate any claim that this current financial crisis had anything to do with Gramm-Leach-Bliley. In fact, you couldn’t have had the assisted takeovers you had. More institutions would have failed.”…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Really, really bad calls, Regulation