Markets: How High is Up?

The difference between a fundamental analyst and a technical analyst is pretty simple.

The fundamental analyst looks to the news flow going into markets, and today they might be wondering about the financial future of the European Union.

The reason would be that the EU has just tried to stick Britain with a 1.7-billion Euro bill to keep the mishmash of bad governance in power.  That’s like getting stuck for $2.15 billion USD.  Ouch!

The fundamental people will sit back and explain how the weakness in Europe could seep into markets next week.  They’ll point to things like the Dr. in NYC who has Ebola and how CDC is now in Panic Fighting II over this, with a political lawyer in charge…good gravy!

And as the topping on the cake:  The sick doc apparently road the subway just hours before

As I wrote over on our site:  The catch-concept is “insulation.”  And that doesn’t happen outside Rural America, sorry.  So back to money for as long as it matters:

The technical analyst, though, on days like this one, keeps the TV on in their office, mainly for amusement.  That’s because they know that all possible news and prospects are already fully discounted in the market, and once you see and understand how markets move (using a combination of Elliott waves, trend channels, and the MACD and such) then it doesn’t matter what’s on the boob tube.

Charts tell it all, is how they look at it.  And then there are the rare people who see it all…

So I’ve been keeping in touch with my friend Robin Landry and we’re still not sure how all this works out.  Time will tell, and the kind of “line in the sand” in here is the S&P 1,980 level.

If the market can climb the present wall of worry and put in a number of closing sessions at (or above) 1,980, then maybe the worst is over, and we will still have a major 5-up before the gates of Hell open financially.

On the other hand, if we turn down from here, then a trip down to 1,740 in the S&P firms up, and if that fails, even 1,540 comes into view.  But worse than that would be that it would mean we really are in a terrible Bear Market, and that beings up the retest of the 2009 lows (6,6500 on the Dow, remember it?).

The problem at that kind of decline is that while we could bounce skyward from there, it would then likely be a 4th wave rally, and that gets us back to that ultra long-term expectation of an S&P under 1,000.  Landry doesn’t talk much about it, but it’s in the data.

Even so, most people won’t really care.  Things like prepping, getting ready for hard times, and all the rest of it seems positively …silly…as long as things seem normal every day.

But keep an eye on Europe.  The EU experiment in Super Government should be instructive – and just like Ebola, should be quickly isolated.

That’s what David Cameron will be trying to do, but hate to say it, the Unemployed Kingdom has already been exposed to the contagious of big government, human replacement by robots and software, so it’s just a matter of time.

But here’s the connection most people will miss because it is subtle:  The EU is planning to embark on an ambitious project to “Reduce Greenhouse Gases by 40 Percent.”

Why do you think they are doing that?

Right!  Climate Change is the new “serial faux industry” just like “terrorism””

Leaders of the Western World all know that without jobs, there will be no taxes and the global governance dream will implode and life will be Depression-like in now time.

So we need to make up bogeymen because that’s an excuse to tax and spend even more.

There is no happy ending to it…so we just sit here in the Outback waiting for it to come along, knowing that climate change would have never gotten as far as it has without some major money on the table.

So we FTM – follow the money –= and sure enough, as always, Everything’s a Business Model.

Cameron will piss and moan about the EU but only up to a point.  After which (wink, wink, nudge-nudge) there will be a British bailout of Europe and then the Brits will ramp up their own version of climate panic to keep the indentured paying more and more for less and less.

And the gun in Cameron’s back?  Word that the UK economy is faltering badly.

Not unexpected given Consumer Super-Saturation.  How many cells phones do you need and how many vehicles?  Excess consumption models eventually all blow up and only things like “Cash for Clunkers” can keep the economy alive.

Sooner, or later, government will make it illegal to own a car more than 10 years old, and you’ll be required to have two phones.  All to ensure the excess  consumption model doesn’t collapse.  Toss in 100,000 –300,000 new Ebola jobs and you’ve got Economic Nirvana.  (I’m gonna go puke, I think.)

Look at the Tyvek suits and Ebola screener hiring and tell me Ebola isn’t an economic stimulus.

It’s like the game Charades…..although the use of the word “like” may not be optional.

So Much for Gun Laws

An officer has been critically wounded in NYC in what?  A hatchet attack.”

Normally, I’d expect the left wing to jump up and demand registration of hatchets, but they’ve done fine with their “register people” agenda, as is, so no need.

Tell Me How This Works?

Eric Holder (outgoing Attorney General’s) wife gets executive privileged out of disclosure in the Fast and Furious case?  Consider the source, but also the implications.

Idiots Ahoy!

I got my first email just a few minutes ago with the subject line:  “Black Friday starts now!”

The gulf between the vox populi and the corpgov marketeers just keeps getting wider and wider, don’t it?

I expect next I will get the first of the Black Friday (shopping day after Thanksgiving is the biggest retail day, most years) sometime in July.

But the reality of where we are as a country comes through in the gate receipts of major league baseball….and in television ratings.  Which are way down for the World Serious this year.

Speaks reams about the country:  baseball is a gentleman’s sport.  Where is the audience going?  Football.  Learn to hit, run, and fall down.  Which doesn’t say much for where we’re going as a country, but people self-select the future, I suppose, and the stats don’t lie.

Or, so a technical analyst would say.

Coping: With Workshop Time and a Magic Lesson

The glorious thing about weekends is that it gives people plenty of opportunity to use the workshop – when the weather is just right.  Not too hot for outside work, and not too cold.

Summers – at least here in the East Texas Outback – at OK for shop work, but anything outside in the sunshine tends to be put on hold as soon as the temp gets over 83F, or so.   Similarly, during the coldest days of winter, the shop only sees use in the afternoons.  When a shop is much below 55F it’s just too cold to enjoy things.  One of these days I may hook up the old wood stove I picked up.

Thursday, Panama dropped by the office looking for ideas on how to build a display rack for his lady-friend.  She’s quite good of crocheting at they’ll be doing a small booth at a nearby town street fair.  The problem was, they just got a table, buy nothing to put up the crocheted bedspreads and such.  Wanted a right-proper display and was looking for ideas.

It wasn’t a hard problem to solve:  An hour later we’d whacked off a couple of hunks of 4X4, about 16-inches long.  Leftover scrap from some past endeavor.  On each end of these, a 20” hunk of 3/4” plywood was centered, cut down to the same width, and these were the stabilizing legs.

As I was running this stuff through the belt sander, Panama got out the metal-cutting chop saw and sliced off a couple of 70” pieces of 5/8-rebar.  That’s the reinforcing steel that’s used on construction sites for concrete pours and the like.  Useful stuff to have around.

With a metal-chopping saw and a small welding set, you can jury-rig just about anything.  Make metal furniture, tables, even chairs if you’re patient enough.  I’m not that guy. So the welder stayed parked. 

Besides, Panama wanted something that would break-down into  pieces. Something that wouldn’t blow out of the back of the pickup truck.  So before the 4X4 bases were drilled, we punched =3” deep holes in them with a Fortner bit.

Not every home handybastard has one, but I’m always anxious to step up to the drill press to use Fortner bits.

The main difference between them and a regular twist drill, is that they drill a very smooth hole and the hole has a nice, flat bottom to it.

They’re not free; you’ll only get three-cents change back from a $50 bill for a set of PORTER-CABLE PC1014 Forstner Bit Set, 14-Piece bits at Amazon.  They are not general purpose drills, only for doweling and – in this case – rebar holes.. 

The reason you might want to pick up a set is that they work extremely well for any project that has round rod, doweling, or rebar in it.  If there’s one drawback, though, it’s that they are not set with really long shafts.  So drilling all the way though a 4X4 (3/12” roughly) will involve double-marking, turning the work piece and so forth. 

Which is why we didn’t through drill the base.

With the two masts of 5/8” rebar, all that was left was to find some more shop scrap – two pieces of 2X4. trim off the ends and round well on the belt sander, then drill two more holes about 2 /1” deep and slip these over the top of the rebar.  Now we have something we could screw and glue  a 2X2 “display bar to.

In  use, the top bar will have tissue paper on it to really show off the handiwork.  The 2X4s look pretty nice, and Panama highlighted them with a coat of “Safety Yellow” spray paint.

The whole process, including the drying time for the vertical rebar (painted with some black wrinkle-finish) took about 90-minutes from start to finish.

And that’s why fall in a workshop is so much fun:  You can walk into the shop with a problem and be having coffee two hours later with the glowing sense of accomplishment that comes from seeing a problem magically appear in the physical world as a “solved” whatchamacallit.

I’ve read a lot on how the Magus, Magik, Magi, or Alchemists worked.

They have a very interesting notion about how the “creation” process works.  To them, there were “veils” in the mind.  And what workshop dwellers are doing when they “work from the head and heart” (not from a set of plans – boring rote stuff like that ) is they “birth” the stuff that humans do on their way to be junior parts of a larger Creator.

It’s the ring-not-pass parts that are particularly instructive.

You begin with a problem and as you think about it, an ember of an idea comes into your head.  You gently blow on the idea, twisting it around this way and that, and next thing you know it bursts into the flame of a “hot idea.”  End of ring-not-pass or Veil #1.

The next step is to stand back (mentally) from your idea and see what it looks like.  This is the putting tinder on it.  More and more detail is added to the mental picture.  Ring-not-pass or Veil 2.  You can’t build the sketch.  You need the clarified vision.

Now we get along to the material selection and cutting.  It’s not to difficult:  You simple look closely at your detailed image in the mind and translate it into dimensions that you can cut and materials you have on hand.  Veil #3.

Once step 3 (translation into measurements) is done, Step 4 is the actual cutting of material to the right size.  As Panama and I were tossing the idea around (steps 1 and 2) we got agreement on what the general look of the thing should be.  Rebar is strong stuff, but it comes in 20-foot lengths and that would have been absurdly high and the small base wouldn’t have held it up.  So the dimensioning in step 3 is important.  We agreed the right height would be about 70-inches.

Step 5 was the “test and assemble” stage.  The rebar went into the bases, the 2X4s were slipped over the tops, and a couple of quick clamps pretended to hold the top bar in place.  This wasn’t particularly difficult, just takes a bit of time going from step 3 (dimensioning) through step 4 (cut and prep) to set up for the real Veil of interest…Step 5.

Feedback comes along as Step 6.  This is where the Magician tweaks the Great Work this way or that.  Panama had the machinery yellow safety paint on his version – I’d missed that in my visioning.

Last, but not least, once the tweaks are done, you get to the final step in the Magic Process:  Beholding.  This is the delicious moment when you sit back, look at what you’ve built and enjoy the “use case” (to borrow a software term).

To recap:  The “Magic of Creation” is what?

  1. Loving the problem and seeing it as a Junior “Creator in Training” moment.
  2. Envisioning the Perfected Solution
  3. Translation into measurements
  4. Cutting the cloth or material
  5. Test assembly
  6. Tweaks to it’s really the Perfect Solution
  7. Beholding and enjoying the work.

imageA while back, I told you we were going to turn what was a simple tin-roof covered porch into a sunroom using left over materials from our house remodeling.

It came out nice enough; The space is 8-feet square, but it there’s something about having a front porch protected from rain, wind, snow, heat, cold, and bugs that’s very comforting. 

Toss in a couple of old director chairs, carpet, and Elaine’s decorative painting and now you have something that’s really nice and eclectic and functional.

And cheap.  Our total cost for the room was a new glass storm door ($139), 5-sheets of sheetrock, and the flooring.  Maybe another $150.

Now, on weekend mornings, we sit out there, have coffee, read, and watch the deer wander by.  Eventually, we’d like to get chairs that recline, so we can drift from coffee to book to snooze, but one thing at a time.

The most important part of this morning’s note, though, really comes down to this:  Average people – when the weekend shows up – sit around and do “average things.”  Keeps them nice and…well….average!

On the other hand, following the well-defined steps of “magic” one can seize on any part of their environment and begin to mold parts of it to become expressions of their own unlimited creative power.

There may be a Creator out there who organizes things like yesterday’s eclipse.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t each be Junior Creators in Training.  No matter where you are, there’s plenty of raw material for it…even if it’s something as subtle as rearranging the furniture.

It’s also a nice way of looking at people.  Since you can pretty much judge people by their fruits you can get an idea of class standings by looking around you.  Money isn’t everything…it’s just one kind of “creating” and not a particularly honest one at that. More like “”trying to “buy a grade” in school, oftentimes.

But people who make money and create? Tons to be learned from the study of them. 

I could wax on about this endlessly, but my bottom line is what?

Weekends are Magic.

Sunday Special

I just haven’t had time yet to distill down all the comments on the “Reproduction of the Gods?” piece, so I will try and get a special report on that up early Sunday morning in time for coffee.

Don’t get used to me doing this, but the topic seems to be of broad interest – and since the emerging global mass consciousness seems to be “awaring” itself on the ‘net,  it’s brain-fueling to  consider some of the possibilities…. so maybe Sunday morning.

A Web Insight into People’s Behavior

Thursday I mentioned that the two most recent posts from UrbanSurvival now show up on our home page – so people don’t have to click as much.  I attributed that to people’s inherent laziness.  But reader Drew explains that it isn’t laziness as I had presupposed:

George –

I quit reading when you went to the click format, happened to stop by today and was pleasantly surprised to find the old format back.

For me it was not a matter of not wanting to click, it’s because it doesn’t flow well with all the clicking back and forth. When I read it in the one page format, it just flows on as I read down, but when I start clicking I’m more likely to get distracted and go to another page and maybe come back to what I clicked, or maybe not. The clicking disrupts the train of thought.

My .02¢. Thanks for a great read.

Thanks for pointing this out.  I had just assumed that most people had the same “invisible click through programming” installed between the ears that I do.  Apparently not, so point well-taken…thank you.

My friend Gaye from sent me a note catching that we are only sending out summaries on the daily feed still and from there it’s a click to “read more” still.  But I figure a feed is sort of like a headline on Drudge…just a bit longer.

OK, off to scan the news and see if the market will hold onto the gains of this week…

Write when you break-even, get rich, or just break…