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How very sad!

From this

To this:


(AP)

In this photo made available by the Mandalay Gazette, blood soaked sandals are shown on a street following a shooting by soldiers during a protest in downtown Yangon, Myanmar, September 27, 2007.

Myanmar Saffron Revolution Mover Mike

Syria Isn’t Sleeping At Night!

As reported at Free Republic, Dr. Jack Wheeler has commented on the Israeli air strike on Syria. That air strike has made the Iranis super sensitive to any information about a possible U.S. or Joint U.S./Israel strike on nuclear sites in Iran. What is curious is that Syria has been so quiet to the apparent act of war.

Syria has gone on a profligate buying spree, spending vast sums on Russian systems, “considered the cutting edge in aircraft interception technology.”

Syria now “possesses the most crowded antiaircraft system in the world,” with “more than 200 antiaircraft batteries of different types,” some of which are so new that they have been installed in Syria “before being introduced into Russian operation service.”

Notice how far away from Israel is Dayr az-Zawr, where the attack took place?

The systems (that cost so much Syrian money) didn’t even light up, gave no indication whatever of any detection of enemy aircraft invading Syrian airspace, zip, zero, nada. The Israelis (with a little techie assistance from us) blinded the Russkie antiaircraft systems so completely the Syrians didn’t even know they were blinded.

That’s gotta keep some people awake at night over there!

Syria Israeli air strike Mover Mike

Update:


SPF, BZH, HOV

Do these charts look familiar?

To me they look like charts of mortgage brokers that bit the dust. In Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis, they are singled out as the three with the highest risk of default.

NY Times Loves Portland

The NY Times has fallen in love with Portland, Oregon. The article, In Portland, a Golden Age of Dining and Drinking, is the latest.

This is a golden age of dining and drinking in a city that 15 years ago was about as cutting edge as a tomato in January. Every little neighborhood in this city of funky neighborhoods now seems to be exploding with restaurants, food shops and markets, all benefiting from a critical mass of passion, skill and experience, and all constructed according to the gospel of locally grown ingredients.

In close proximity is a cadre of farmers committed to growing environmentally responsible produce with maximum flavor, delivered to restaurants and to the gorgeous farmers’ markets that dot the city. There are local fisheries and small beef, lamb and pork producers. Not far away is the Hood River Valley, with its myriad fruit growers who supply glistening, fragile berries and stonefruits of every stripe and color.

The article singles out Pok Pok, Paley’s Place, Le Pigeon, Ken’s Artisan Bakery and Ken’s Artisan Pizza, Carafe, and Clyde Common. Also, included is a slide show.

While on the subject of restaurants, Sunday night Bev and I dined with some Madison High School friends at fenouil.

The dinner was a special event, $41 per person, wine included, that featured what I would call southern soul food or French Creole. We started with a dish of pickled shrimp, very tasty; followed by crab cakes with a kind of cole slaw topping: hoe cakes, a kind of cornbread pancake with apple sauce; pork tenderloin with collard greens. My first collard greens and they were good with the pork. Then deep fried okra, not so good! Then came a dish of shrimp and grits, again my first try of grits (and okra). I haven’t missed anything all these years. After a very leisurely dinner with abundant conversation, dessert of pecan pie.
(Waiter there’s too much pepper in my paprikash, but I would be proud to partake of your pecan pie.)

The Madison High group gets together once a month to taste foods an eastside boy never tasted. We volunteered to be an alternate, we liked the experience so much.

Portland Restaurants Fine Dining

Prostate Cancer Update

As you know, I had a prostatectomy on July 10th for prostate cancer. Today, I received the results from my PSA test. If it were positive for cancer, I would have to undergo radiation treatment. That kind of treatment has risks, incontinence and it can have an negative effect on tissue in the pelvic area.

My doctor, Michael Lipke, burst into the exam room with a big smile and the words we wanted to hear. “There is no cancer!” The PSA test was 0.05 or negligible. Bev and I jumped up and down and hugged and shook Dr. Lipke’s hand and said, “Good job!” The next follow-up is in six months. The most important thing any of us has is our health. Thank you God and all of you for your prayers.

Prostate Cancer Mover Mike

Oregon Quakes

Here’s the latest quake near Maupin. In addition, at 11:22 PM, Sunday, I think we just had a slight quake here in Portland. My computer monitor jiggled for about two or three seconds and as I sat there, I felt a little queasy.

map 1.4 2007/09/23 19:43:08 45.119N 120.933W 5.8 13 km ( 8 mi) ESE of Maupin, OR

Maupin Earthquake Brooks, OR

UPDATE: A 3.2 just hit at 11:20 near Brooks Oregon!

MAP 3.2 2007/09/24 06:20:54 45.107 -123.044 29.5 9 km ( 6 mi) NW of Brooks, OR

Update:


For Lack Of A “>”

For those of you using IE, you have experienced Mover Mike with the side bar shifted to the right covering part of the column. I found the problem, I failed to close a tag with “>” and IE does not like that. When I view Mover Mike now on IE, it looks absolutely great again. Sorry for the interruption.

Obama And His Tax Plan

Sen. Barack Hussein Obama touches the third rail of politics by suggesting we solve the social security problem by subjecting income of those earning more than $97,000 to a 12.4 percent tax. I don’t care if you tax the rich. I’m not one of them, But…when is enough, enough? You can see from this graphic that that the top 50% income earning families make 85.8% of the income, yet pay 96.5% of the taxes.

Obama also, would

…eliminate income taxes for about 7 million seniors making less than $50,000 a year. Twenty-two million more won’t even have to file a return, which also means they won’t have to hire an expensive accountant.

Big whoop! The bottom 50% only pay 3.5% of the taxes. His recommendation doesn’t cost the government much money.

We could double the tax rates on those making over $188,000, but the politicians would just spend the money and come back for more. Would doubling of the tax bite on the rich help anybody create jobs? The incentive to earn big bucks provides jobs.

I will see my Veternarian Tuesday. This group of Vets just remodeled their offices, employ ten to twelve nurses and receptionists, pay property taxes and must pay their overhead for a reason. They have an incentive. They want to enjoy the perks of the top 20% of earners. Obama would sure take the fun out of the quest.

How Much Do They Families Make In the U.S.?

Average Pre-Tax Family Income (in 1995 US Dollars)

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Income Category 1977 1979 1981 1983 1985 1987 1989

(Projected)
Highest 20% $94,300 $98,300 $95,900 $99,500 $109,000 $113,000 $118,000
Fourth 20% $49,300 $50,400 $48,400 $48,000 $49,600 $51,100 $50,900
Middle 20% $36,400 $36,200 $34,600 $32,800 $34,200 $34,900 $35,000
Second 20% $23,700 $23,200 $21,700 $19,800 $21,300 $21,600 $21,400
Lowest 20% $10,000 $9,600 $8,900 $8,100 $8,700 $8,700 $9,000
All Families $42,900 $43,500 $42,000 $42,000 $44,500 $45,800 $46,800
Top 1% $356,000 $389,000 $367,000 $435,000 $524,000 $544,000 $635,000
Top 5% $166,000 $179,000 $168,000 $182,000 $207,000 $216,000 $236,000
Top 10% $125,000 $130,000 $125,000 $132,000 $148,000 $153,000 $166,000
Income Category 1991 1993 1995 1999
(Projected)

Highest 20% $111,000 $114,000 $120,000 $132,000
Fourth 20% $49,300 $49,000 $49,600 $53,000
Middle 20% $33,600 $32,300 $33,300 $35,400
Second 20% $20,600 $19,600 $20,100 $21,200
Lowest 20% $8,400 $7,800 $8,100 $8,400
All Families $44,600 $44,100 $45,700 $49,500
Top 1% $547,000 $584,000 $660,000

$719,000
Top 5% $217,000 $225,000 $244,000 $276,000
Top 10% $153,000 $158,000 $168,000 $188,000

Source: Congressional Budget Office, “Preliminary Estimates of Effective Tax Rates” (September 7, 1999)
http://www.cbo.gov/showdoc.cfm?index=1545&from=4&sequence=0

If you study the table one big thing pops out. The top 20% are earning about 50% more on average than they were in 1977. The rest of us (80%) have seen our income flat to down. Now maybe people are migrating up from one level to the next, but it sure seems like it takes more and more money today to buy the same things we bought ten years ago.

I do not think it is morally right to put our spending burden on the small percent we consider rich, or the burden on the smokers for childrens’ healthcare. I think politicians should spend more time thinking about ways to get the average income up for the 80%.

Sen. Barack Hussein Obama Taxes Mover Mike

Alan Greenspan Blows!

I rail against the FED because essentially it is arrogant and elitist to think that men, with all their tinkering and pseudo-knowledge, can know better than the market. Who in his right mind can allow himself to think he knows what interest rates should be, or how much to increase or decrease the money supply, or decide what price to charge, or even determine what is too high a profit margin?

Listen to the windbag, Alan Greenspan, he admits he doesn’t know either:

Hat Tip to Mike Shedlock

Alan Greenspan Federal Reserve Mover Mike

Update:

The Vigilant Investor does a particularly good job rebuting Greenspan.

Jim Ogonowski for Congress (MA-5)

A stunning upset is brewing in Massachusetts. Republican candidate Jim Ogonowski is within 10 points of his entrenched Democrat opponent for the special election in the 5th congressional district on October 16th. Join your favorite bloggers in a grassroots contribution drive to raise Jim’s profile and stun the media with a GOP upset in the land of Kennedy and Kerry.

Massachusetts has not sent a Republican to Congress in more than a decade. It’s time to make the change! The Democrats’ actions demand it.

Jim Ogonowski Massachusetts Mover Mike

Update:

Hat Tip to Patrick Ruffini

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