WC Varones

Don't lend your hand to raise no flag atop no ship of fools

End ECB Dick-Tatorship

A woman just jumped up on the table at Mario Draghi's press conference and dumped confetti all over his head.

Her T-shirt was classic.

Widespread appeal

Source: WSJ.

John Maynard Keynes on non-traded REITs

I haven't written about non-traded REITs before, but they are one of the more widespread investment scams out there.  Typical REITs trade like stocks on an exchange and play a valuable role in asset allocation for most investors.  Non-traded REITs, on the other hand, are sold to unsuspecting small investors by their unscrupulous stock brokers, but can't be readily traded should the investor want to cash out.

The broker gets a huge commission, typically at least 5% and often even worse.  What the investor gets is ownership in a REIT that is immediately down by the amount of the commission.  Large "dividend" yields that sound good often turn out to be unsustainable, and dividends end up falling along with the portfolio value over time.

In addition to the unsustainable high dividend yields, risk-averse investors can be persuaded to buy non-traded REITs because they have stable values.  If they don't trade on an exchange, and don't have daily prices, there's no volatility!  Which is absurd, of course.  Just because you can't see the value of your holdings changing price every day doesn't mean that the underlying value isn't fluctuating just as much as an actively traded REIT.

So I found it interesting to see John Maynard Keynes making exactly this point way back in 1938, long before the modern non-traded REIT racket:
Some Bursars will buy without a tremor unquoted and unmarketable investments in real estate which, if they had a selling quotation for immediate cash available at each Audit, would turn their hair grey. The fact that you do not [know] how much its ready money quotation fluctuates does not, as is commonly supposed, make an investment a safe one.

The Courage to Hit Ctrl+P like a Spastic Monkey

Zimbabwe Ben considers himself courageous in new book title.

UPDATE: William Banzai7 has a corrected book cover.

He is Risen!

Luke 24: 6-7:
He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: 'The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.' "

Leftist TV news employee Alix Bryan discovers the Adam Smith Effect

You remember Adam Smith, right?

No, not that Adam Smith. This Adam Smith, the CFO who berated a Chick-fil-A drive-through employee because he hated the Chick-fil-A owners' religious beliefs. He was quickly fired by his mortified employer and is reportedly still having difficulty finding work.

So let us coin a term. The Adam Smith Effect is when someone grows up sheltered in such a cocoon of like-minded, leftist hatred of differing viewpoints that he has absolutely no idea that there could be consequences for his obnoxious actions. All of my friends hate Chick-fil-A, so of course no one could have a problem with me berating a young employee!

Which brings us to Richmond CBS affiliate employee Alix Bryan. She not only joined in the internet hatefest against Memories Pizza, whose owners had the misfortune of honestly responding to a reporter's baiting question about their views on gay marriage, but she went so far as to file a false fraud report on the GoFundMe fund set up to help the family after the closure of their business due to death threats. Everyone I know is joining in to punish the bigots! Who could object?

Well, now Alix is in hot water with her TV news employer, because having employees famous for not just being rabid ideologues and bullies but also dishonest is of course not good for the station's credibility.

Thanks for another excellent illustration of the Adam Smith Effect, Alix!

The Bernank does not tolerate dissent

Zimbabwe Ben has started blogging at brookings.edu.

Some points of view are not welcome there.

Trannies gone wild!

Men Dressed as Women Shot Outside NSA Gate, Tried to Ram Past Checkpoint

Happy St. Paddy's Day!

Don't do anything I would do!

Greenspan's Body Count: research suggests Alan Greenspan massacred 500 Irish

There were almost 500 more suicides between 2008 and 2012 than there would have been if Ireland had not gone into recession.

A study by the National Suicide Research Foundation has revealed the rate of suicide among men at the end of 2012 was 57% higher than if the recession had not hit.

The equivalent rate for women was 7 % higher.

The amount of people who self-harmed during that period also increased.

One of the authors of the report, Professor Ella Arensman from the National Suicide Research Foundation, said another study in Cork also points to a strong link between unemployment, debt and suicide.

"During the recession, amongst people who died from suicide, 33% were unemployed, and nearly half of them had their last job in the construction sector ... [which] was very clearly affected by the economic recession," she said.

Happy 10th anniversary for Jim Cramer's Mad Money

One of the most puerile shows on TV celebrates 10 years of bad stock advice.

And don't forget his Greatest Hits from the Year 2000.

Monica didn't need any devices

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