Oct 29, 2008

"Buy when there's blood in the streets, even if the blood is your own."

Baron Rothschild, an 18th century British nobleman and member of the Rothschild banking family, is credited with saying this. Rothschild made a fortune buying in the panic that followed the Battle of Waterloo against Napoleon. This is contrarian investing at its heart - the strongly-held belief that the worse things seem in the market, the better the opportunities are for profit.
I first heard this quote in a movie - Daniel Day Lewis in Gangs of New York after one of their bloody battles I think. The point is, and as I've been discussing with close friends, this is the perfect opportunity for us young folk. Which means, if you have cash and have thought of getting into the stock market, now is your golden opportunity, seriously.

So what do you buy? My advice has always been to make a list of 10-20 companies that you like (i.e. Apple - because you love iPods and macs; or Jiff b/c you just love their peanut butter; Chipotle - the burritos are amazing!, and so on).

This is because one golden rule of investing is that you should be able to devote 1 hour per week, per stock, to read up on the company and what it's doing. (I don't even get to do this, though) BUT, if you're buying stocks in companies you like, the more motivated you'll be to read about the company.

Here's a few that I own (and love):

  • Research In Motion (ticker: RIMM) (they make blackberry phones, which I think are amazing)
  • Apple (ticker: aapl)(need I justify? Apple is a superstar company)
  • Visa (ticker: V) (nothing fancy here, but I bought on their IPO per much excitement from the investment community)
I hope that helps get anyone started on making their list.

Also, Yahoo Finance is one of the best go-to pages to get good information (finance.yahoo.com).

That said, here's an article from today that I'll share - if you like any of these companies, they are worth checking out and considering for stock purchase.
Oh, and one more golden rule (from me at least) - BUY FOR THE LONG TERM! I don't flip stocks or day trade - I don't get hung up when the stock drops by 20+ percent (usually), b/c I am in this for years to come. I'll sell when I need to buy a house, or college education for my kids, and I know the stock will have grown almost guaranteed. So stick with it, and DO NOT freak out when things happen that scare the majority (like what's happening right now).

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Oct 13, 2008

Don't drink and ride the metro...

...because then you'll get the urge to hop the turnstile when you get off the train, and a metro cop will come over and give you a ticket for it whether you had the money for it or not.

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Oct 8, 2008

AIG, are you that retarded?

"WASHINGTON (AP) -- Days after [AIG] got a federal bailout, American International Group Inc. spent $440,000 on a posh California retreat for its executives, complete with spa treatments, banquets and golf outings, according to lawmakers investigating the company's meltdown."

I think it's a great idea. Celebrate the awarding of $85MM from the government (aka us taxpayers) by treating yourself to the spa during a royal retreat. Besides, $440K is a drop in the bucket of the $85MM package...and the fact that AIG was in absolute turmoil was no big deal, really.

It's no surprise that things like this happen. Why? Because the concept of money (or credit) is severely blurred and for many reasons, 1) the company is so big that the majority of employees aren't eying the "budget" b/c they aren't privy to it, 2) there's this feeling of "oh this won't happen to us" when it comes to actually running out of money 3) management is pleasantly hammered at nighttime soirees and says "ahhh f*** it, let's put this all on the company card...and like magic, life is glorious...and free.

Damn it feels good to be a banksta.


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Oct 5, 2008

McCain Ads Dig Deep...

I have to post this...nonsense. From crooksandliars.com

These smears have been floating around in email chain letters, but even still, this really shows just how low and how desperate the McCain campaign is. Not Larry Sabato:

The LA Times scoops the Virginia media with this column from the McCain campaign's official Buchanan County representative. You need to read this column to believe it. In "humor" he accuses Obama of wanting to paint the White House black, supporting reparations, changing the national anthem to the "black national anthem", teaching "black liberation theology in all churches", and replacing the flag with a "star and crescent logo".

Nothing like a little race baiting four weeks before the election...why does this guy still have his job?

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin brings up Bill Ayers at a campaign stop in Carson, California:

"Evidently there's been a lot of interest in what I read lately," she said. "I was reading today a copy of the New York Times. And I was really interested to read in there about Barack Obama's friends from Chicago. Turns out one of his earliest supporters is a man who, according to the New York Times, was a domestic terrorist, that quote 'launched a campaign of bombings that would target the Pentagon and the United States Capitol.'"

Saturday's New York Times story, an investigation into whether Obama had a relationship with Ayers, concluded that the men were never close and that Obama has denounced Ayers' radical past, which occurred when Obama, who was born in 1961, was a child. It also found that he has downplayed their contacts.

"This is not a man who sees America as you and I see America," Palin said of Obama. "We see America as a force for good in this world. We see America as a force for exceptionalism. ... Our opponents see America as imperfect enough to pal around with terrorists who would bomb their own country."


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The roots ate my fish!

I have sad news this morning. Upon going to feed my big bad beta fish, Mike Tyson, I realized he was no longer in his bowl. Now, this bowl sits on top of a tall book shelf in my house with some bamboo in it. I have no cats or other fish eating creatures. Tyson was not a jumper.

My theory is that the bamboo roots ate the fish. After cleaning out the bowl and picking through the roots, I see that he's not tangled in them. Therefore, the only option would be that the bamboo got hungry and began the process of eating Tyson. This is a travesty.

I will remember Tyson for his quiet presence, blazing red coat, and how he protected my house against evildoers.

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