Monday, May 19, 2014


Do you have a series of systems in your life? I do.

Sunday – Farmers’ market, Sunday papers, garage, R&R, Mad Men

Monday – Starbucks, bureaucracy

Tuesday – Bureaucracy, and more bureaucracy

Wednesday – Roady’s, Rocky’s, home office bureaucracy

Thursday – Starbucks, bureaucracy, and more bureaucracy

Friday – Golf, cocktails/dinner in the Village

Saturday – Cleaning, laundry, garden, nap

AND there are systems within each one of these systems: where to sit, how to act, proper procedures, when to fluff and fold, social media, etc., etc.

I promise, someday, no systems. Can that be a possibility????

MUST READ - Promises That Can Bend Without Breaking

Bureaucracy Part Deux - But! This is the deal we make with the world. We interact within it. We move up with the help of great managers and are hindered by crappy ones. Sometimes we get recognized and sometimes we don’t. For women, that “sometimes” seems to happen all too often. But the key question is: What is the source of your power? And, what is the source of your joy?

Your power does not come from luck. Your power comes from you, and what you invest in it every day, in the work and the sweat and the giving a damn. That is what you carry around with you, even as you walk out of your fancy top job for the last time. That is what you carry into the next thing, and there will be a next thing, because you are good and because that’s what you do. That is your capital.

POLITICS 101, 2016 - "The Bush battle within," by Maggie Haberman: "Jeb Bush's decision whether to run for president in 2016 is being driven by competing impulses within his own family. On one side is his eldest son, George P., who's unabashedly and publicly supportive of his father's potential candidacy. On the other are Jeb Bush's mother and wife, who are clearly reluctant. In between is his older brother, George W., who is passively supportive but seems to friends to be more indifferent than enthusiastic. ...

"George W. has remarked that his brother knows how difficult a campaign would be - and ... it would mean yet another rehashing of a White House record that was struggling to regain some of its sheen. ... The proud, supportive father: 'I know his father would be thrilled to see him run,' longtime George H.W. Bush spokesman Jim McGrath told POLITICO. ... The reluctant spouse ... The even more reluctant mother ... The enthusiastic son."

COMMENCEMENT 2014 – The coming week notable Commencement addresses:

May 19 – Jill Abramson, former CEO New York Times Corp.: Wake Forest University
May 19 – John Kerry, Secretary of State: Boston College
May 22 – Susan Wojcicki, CEO You Tube: Johns Hopkins University
May 23 – Fareed Zakaria, CNN International Affairs journalist: Sarah Lawrence College
May 24 – Mary Carillo, former tennis professional and sports columnist: Elon University
May 24 – Ed Helms, Actor (“The Office”): Cornell University
May 25 – Diana Nyad, swimmer: Middlebury College
May 25 – Big Bird, Actor (“Sesame Street”) – University of Phoenix

COLLEGE CHRONICLES - A beginner's guide to repaying your student loans

CORPORATE CASH – Cash, besides being king, is seen as risk-free – one of the few numbers usually taken at face value. Recent moves by some of America’s biggest companies should force a rethink of that.

At the end of 2013, S&P 500 companies had parked overseas $1.9 trillion of the profits they made outside the U.S., more than four times the level of a decade earlier. Technology, health-care and industrial sectors dominate the cash holding firms.

That cash presents a problem: Because companies want to avoid a tax hit, many are loath to repatriate it, preventing them from returning it to shareholders or otherwise deploying it at home. Letting cash sit in the bank is not very productive. It can also attract the attention of activist investors, such as Carl Ichan’s recent tussle with Apple.  Firms also can face criticism if they use tax-avoidance tactics, such as transferring intellectual-property rights to low-tax countries.

One way of using overseas cash is with a big, foreign investment. Apple’s $151 billion in cash and equivalents, $132 billion is overseas. This is proving a challenge to firms, invest in risky foreign investments or pay the 33% tax bringing cash back to the U.S.

If investors are not applying some sort of haircut to the valuations of companies with hefty amounts of cash overseas, perhaps they should be.

BONDS ARE BACK - Many investors had expected that years of easy-money policies would have led to relatively strong economic growth by now, but the obstinately sluggish economies in Europe and the U.S. are throwing central bankers for a loop. As officials signaled their continued resolve in recent days to jolt the world's largest economies out of their malaise, we report that the prospect of more money being injected into the world's bond markets—as well as policies to keep interest rates low—has acted as a green light for the world's bond buyers. Global bond rates dropped to their lowest levels of the year Wednesday, with investors piling into U.S., German and British government bonds and driving down their yields. We note that the 10-year U.S. Treasury's yield dropped to its lowest level in more than six months, while yields on 10-year German bunds fell to their lowest point in a year. "Bond bears have eggs on their faces this year," noted one money manager. And this morning's latest raft of weak data out of the euro zone only underscores the fragility of the global economic environment.

ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER LOOMS - A large section of the mighty West Antarctica ice sheet has begun falling apart and its continued melting now appears to be unstoppable, two groups of scientists reported ... If the findings hold up, they suggest that the melting could destabilize neighboring parts of the ice sheet and a rise in sea level of 10 feet or more may be unavoidable in coming centuries. Global warming caused by the human-driven release of greenhouse gases has helped to destabilize the ice sheet, though other factors may also be involved ...

The rise of the sea is likely to continue to be relatively slow for the rest of the 21st century ... but in the more distant future it may accelerate markedly, potentially throwing society into crisis. ... 'This is really happening,' Thomas P. Wagner, who runs NASA's programs on polar ice and helped oversee some of the research, said in an interview. 'There's nothing to stop it now. But you are still limited by the physics of how fast the ice can flow.

BIRTHDAYS THIS WEEK – Birthday wishes and thoughts this week to: Mark Bigglestone …famous Oakland Raider fan, Tommy Chong (76), Joe Cocker (70), Barbara Jean Hasse ….famous Mom, Jewel (40), Patti LaBelle (70), Jim Lehrer (80).


Verb 1. Ice Hockey. to deceive (an opponent) by a fake.

“Two boys on bikes came along, deked around..”.
-- Kim Moritsugu, The Glenwood Treasure, 2003

Origin: Deke originally was a Canadian English term. It's a shortening of decoy that arose in the 1950s.

Noun, 1. strike

Huelgas are a common phenomenon in some Latin American countries:
Se avecina dentro de tres días una huelga de médicos.
Within three days there’s going to be a doctors’ strike.


NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs: Round Three winners – Montreal Canadians over the New York Rangers in seven, Los Angeles Kings over the Chicago Blackhawks in six.

NBA Playoffs: Round Three winners – Miami Heat over the Indiana Pacers in seven, San Antonio Spurs over the Oklahoma City Thunder in seven.

2014 Season to date (33-32)

MARKET WEEK - Stocks are likely to take their cue from the bond market this week, as traders worry that low yields are a warning that the economy is not springing back. U.S. stock futures were lower today, as global stocks continued to fall.

DRIVING THE WEEK -  Latest FOMC minutes out Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. will be closely read to see how many members share Janet Yellen's recently expressed concerns about the housing market ... Existing home sales Thursday at 10:00 a.m. expected to rise to 4.68M from 4.59M ... Index of leading indicators at 10:00 a.m. Thursday expected to rise 0.3 percent ... New homes sales at 10:00 a.m. Friday expected to rise to 425K pace from 384K ... Senate Banking has a hearing scheduled for Thursday on transportation infrastructure ... House Financial Services has hearing Tuesday at 10:00 a.m. on the "dangers" of FSOC's systemically significant designation process ... HFSC also has a pair of CFPB hearings scheduled for Wednesday including a morning session on allegations of "discrimination and retaliation" at the agency and in the afternoon on proposals to "improve transparency and accountability" at the agency ... Big retailers including Target, Sears and Home Depot report earnings this week.

Next week: Jack Ass of the Month and Summer begins.

Until Next Monday, Adios.

Claremont, CA

May 19, 2014

#V-5, 214

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