Friday, April 25, 2008

No Steve No

To:Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer:
Please, please don't spend my money on Yahoo. Spend $4 billion per year for the next 10 years building something new and better. This has to now be an ego deal, not an economic deal. If you withdraw the bid, YHOO is a $15 stock.

You are too smart for this. Many times the best deals are the ones you don't make. This is one of those times. Don't spend my money on this.

Sincerely,
gene

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Chris Carfi and Paul Greenberg

Just attended a two-day seminar on social networking and Web 2.0, presented by Paul Greenberg and Chris Carfi.

On Paul's site their is a promo for an upcoming webinar. I totally recommend it.

Most informative and useful stuff. May have even convinced me that there is reason to use Twitter even if you are over 15....

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

PA Primary Retrospective

My estimates for Ms. Clinton's margin of victory were (slightly) optimisitc. I was at >10%. However, clearly strong enough performance to keep her comfortably in the race.

Next prediction - she wins Indiana; finishes within 3 points in NC. Heading for an interesting convention for a change. The Dems shouldn't be worried about that - will create much more interest in the convention, higher ratings, etc.

While I'm still the lonely conservative, I still think it is the democratic party's election to lose...

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

PA primary

The networks have now called the primary for Senator Clinton. So the only thing that remains is the margin. I'm still betting on an over 10 point victory.....prolonging the race, perhaps into the convention.

We'll know by morning.

She took a surprisingly belicose tone towards Iran this AM. Fine by me.

Our biggest foreign policy mistake of the last 25 years was not selling all the weapons our arms manufacturers could make to both sides when Iraq attacked Iran a few years ago.....but I digress from the primary.

Much more to come on this topic.

Stock chart links

It used to be easy to lind my blog posts to Stock Chart.com.

Recently it has been a mess- and the results are something difficult to link like the following post. If someone has a simple way to do it, please give me a comment....
thanks
gene

Wal*Mart Breakout #2?

Looks to me that Wal*Mart has broken out of a four-year trading range - see the chart link.


Members - Your Favorite Charts

However, with the Dow and S&P clearly locked in a trading range it isn't obvious to me that WMT can make a move above long time techical resistance at $60. (There is minor technical resistance at $58).

Wal*Mart Breakout #2?

Wal*Mart is now trading at levels last seen in 2004.

Despite today's sell-off, Wal*Mart traded up a few more cents. My <"....">chart shows the latest technicals on a weekly chart. Next resistance at $58 and $60. However, with the broader indexes clearly now rangebound, it isn't clear that WMT can make much more of a move.

As always with any stock pick, do your own diligence

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Pennsylvania Primary update

I'm guessing that Senator Obama has hurt himself worse than generally thought with the bitter and clinging mess.

I agree with his comment today that last night's debates wasted a lot of time at the start on relatively trivial issues. Nonetheless, my guess it that the real Obama was revealed in SF. He is a Harvard Law grad; he doesn't make any comments casually and choses his words carefully. That was real Barak recorded.

Virginia Tech's anniversary

Virginia Tech alumnus Dave Scarangella has written a nice piece about the tragedy one year later: I completely recommend it....like Dave, I had never heard the term "31 Black"

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Pennsylvania Primary

While I'm now a registered PA voter, I can't think of myself as a Pennsylvanian. Probably has something to do with the number of places we've lived and the intensity of my current position; we haven't really done much to take advantage of the local area.
But Pennsylvanians will play a much larger role in selecting the Democratic nominee, and probably the next President, than anyone imagined just 90 days ago.
The recent gaffe by Senator Obama, combined with the widespread reporting of the comments by his minister, may give Senator Clinton a charge. I don't think the religious among us - whether small town or not - are going to feel too good that he thinks they cling to their religious beliefs do to bitterness. I'm far from an expert in this area, but it seems to me that Philadelphia has a large Catholic community. They probably don't feel particularly bitter either.
And most people I know who own guns own them because: they like to hunt; they like to shoot; they want to feel protected, or some combination of the three. Bitterness? I don't think so.
Even though it appears to me that Senator Obama has outspent Senator Clinton sizeably here, look for her to pull this one out.

Hillary is running an television ad claiming that investment bankers making $45 million pay a lower percentage of their income on tax than typical working people. (!) Since all the data clearly shows that the richest 10% of Americans pay almost all the taxes in the country - where is this ridiculous claim coming from?

New smoothie recipe

For those of you, like me, with some cholestorol, blood pressure and the like problems, I've created my best new smoothie recipe yet.

One cup frozen blueberries ( I use the Target brand; they are just fine), one cup orange juice, one cup apple juice (the Mott's Natural Fresh Pressed works), one banana, a half cup of pineapple (the little plastic cups in the grocery fresh fruit section are perfect), one spoon of sugar and a cup of ice.

Blend until smooth.

China and Tibet

Why would China pick now bludgeon the Buddhists?

It simply makes no sense - one can only conclude that, like the old USSR in the summer on 1968, the Chinese government just doesn't care about world opinion. So to hell with the rest of the world, and to hell with the Tibetians.

If you stop and think about it, China's obsession with Tibet doesn't make any sense. It isn't like they had some potent army poised to invade China. It is a poor, isolated, largely mountainous place.

Absolutely nothing about it makes sense.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

National Basketball Championship

I've put my grief behind me. The Memphis Tigers gave a fantastic account of themselves this year, winning more games than any other college team ever. The loss Monday night was painful, made more so by the way that it happened, with at least 5 chances to win it all. But it still can't hide a great season.

My congratulations to the players and coaches.

The best talent frequently doesn't win the tournament. I don't know if Memphis is better than Kansas from a talent perspective; I knew the teams were evenly matched. So, it wasn't an NC State vs. Houston, Villanova over Georgetown or Duke over UNLV. And one must recognize the Kansas players for making great clutch plays to fuel a very late rally.

Good job John Calipari, Derrick, Joey, Antonio, Robert, Chris as well as the bench players (subs or second team doesn't do them justice). I hope everyone who isn't a senior returns - but I won't blame you if you accept the outrageous NBA money....

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Proxy Statements v2

My war on email proxies continues: Reynolds American: I just logged on to proxyvote.com and requested a paper set of documents to be mailed to me. When they come, I'm voting against management. And it cost you for both proxyvote and the mailing cost. Got the message?

Final Four

One more time I have to congratulate John Calipari and the University of Memphis Tigers. A great performance, totaling controlling UCLA. Coach Cal obviously has them peaking at the right time. For us alumni and long time supporters it would be nice to see Chris Douglas Roberts and Derrick Rose return for one more season and attempt to match Florida's back-to-back wins. But, the call of the NBA is strong, so we'll see.

North Carolina deserved to lose simply because of Roy Williams' tie. Here is a guy who has got to be making $3 million a year. Roy: buy a Hermes, Kiton, a Zegna, something, but lose that thing.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Gates, Ballmer, Microsoft and Yahoo

MSFT leaked that they might pull its $40 billion offer for YHOO. Please! Does anyone think that MSFT shareholders are getting a good deal at that price?
Couldn't MSFT make MSN competitive if it spent $4 billion per year for the next 10 years?

FD - I own both stocks - I've held MSFT for a long time, and am very disappointed in this deal and the reduction in share price it created. And, thru the Legg Mason Value Trust, I own YHOO. Bill Miller, investment guru who runs the Value Trust, has been calling for a price increase from MSFT. Bill, MSFT is already paying too much....

Mssrs. Gates and Ballmer: pull the offer. YHOO goes to $15 at that point, so if you really have to waste shareholder money, at least waste less.....

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Home builder stocks v2

OK - my homebuilder stock picks a few months ago was the single worst timing call ever for me. I toyed with adding to my position - which I should have done, but chickened out - I thought (and am still concerned) that one or more of my holdings could have gone bankrupt....

After the recent run-up, I'm still below my entry, but no longer gasping for oxygen. At least one is close to my purchase price -but it was here not too long ago and retreated. The better technical indicator is that two of my three homebuilders (HOV, CTX, KBH) are above both their 50 day and 200 day moving average, and weren't the last time they got close to my entries.

Given the snapback, I'll be happy with some sideways action for a while, just as long as we don't slip back

Proxy Statements

OK - Simple rant: if you send me one of those little forms to vote my proxy online and not a real paper proxy, I'm voting against management. I know I don't own enough shares to matter to any company I own stock in - but I might someday - so lookout.

I want an old-fashioned paper printeed proxy. I can carry them on a trip to read. I can take it out on my patio. I can make notes. If I have to log on to order it digitally, I'm going to do so, and then, when the paper copy comes I'm voting against management on every issue, and with even the most ridiculous, insipid gadfly resolutions.

You were warned.