Gongol.com Archives: September 2008
Brian Gongol

September 16, 2008

Science and Technology Chevrolet reiterates plans to launch electric-hybrid car in 2010
The company had better do something to find a non-gasoline source of power if it wants to survive for another hundred years

Water News Keokuk protests $60 million sewer project mandate

Business and Finance Charlie Munger: "[L]iabilities are always 100% good. It's the assets you have to worry about."
And that's the best way to sum up what's been happening lately in the world of investment and mortgage banking. As noted here in February, this year's "economic stimulus" package was really a bank recapitalization plan. But it appears not to have provided enough capital for the wildly under-capitalized industry. The big question now is whether this will be a cleansing period from which markets will emerge stronger, or just financial Armageddon. It's likely to be somewhere in between. Lots of American businesses and families are in dire credit trouble, and lots of others are financially as solid as Gibraltar. Unfortunately, though, the speed of exchange made possible by computing technology means that small problems can spread like wildfire. Of course, it also lets people earn casual income, too. With so many big, recognizable companies in trouble, we'll have to face a matter that recurs often in capitalism: When to give up on commercial institutions we like. In an ideal world, business operators would learn how better to adapt to changes in order to keep their institutions afloat -- but financial capitalism (ownership by anonymous shareholders) tends to value those institutions less than proprietors' capitalism (ownership by people who identify with the firms they own). Unfortunately, people get hurt when businesses fail. And there's no doubt that a huge amount of money has been lost in the stock market.

The United States of America Women have only held the right to vote for part of a century
The number of women sent to jail for protesting on behalf of their right to vote until the right was actually secured in 1920 should be enough to shame some of today's non-voters into reconsidering how much they ought to value that right.

Humor and Good News 10 steps to better etiquette
And if there weren't so many people violating just these basic rules, the list itself would seem insulting. But what's really insulting is how casually so many people dispense with the easy things.

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