Archive for September, 2008

New 2009 Cars: Volkswagen Jetta TDI, Audi A4, and Mazda6

New 2009 Cars: Volkswagen Jetta TDI, Audi A4, and Mazda6

Given the recent flurry of new car introductions in the US market, I think it’s time for a brief overview of what’s available for Model Year 2009: 2009 Volkswagen Jetta TDI (Diesel) Wagon A recent MotorTrend review of the 2009 Jetta TDI showered the diesel powered automobile with high praise.  And I couldn’t agree more with the editors at MotorTrend.  [...]

An Alternative Bailout Plan That Does Not Screw the Middle Class

An Alternative Bailout Plan That Does Not Screw the Middle Class

Thanks to Danya’s RuttenBerg’s blog for pointing out that there are alternatives to asking US taxpayers for 700 Billion dollars; here’s an interesting position/plan from Senator Bernie Sander’s (Vermont). Also, are you wondering how we got into this whole banking/mortgage mess?  Read about the history of deregulatioin starting in the early 1980′s.

The Bailout as High Drama

The Bailout as High Drama

The current political and financial scene in Washington and New York could not be unfolding in a more dramatic fashion.  Key congressional leaders, the President, McCain, Obama, and Secretary Paulson met late into the evening yesterday only to walk away with no deal to rescue US banks and the ailing markets.  Click here for a brilliant account of the events via Stolberg of [...]

David Foster Wallace on Life and Work

David Foster Wallace on Life and Work

Thanks to my cousin Mike for pointing out this article/commencement speech by the late writer David Foster Wallace.  Wallace hits on a few themes in the article, but he’s mostly focused on biological preservation via putting one self first, worship (not just the religious or spiritual kind), and awareness/consciousness.  In sum, though, I think Wallace is making a simple point: [...]

The Current US Banking Crisis, What Sweden Can Teach the US, and Why It Makes Sense to Listen to Bernanke

The Current US Banking Crisis, What Sweden Can Teach the US, and Why It Makes Sense to Listen to Bernanke

Bo Lundgren, ex Swedish Finance Minister, knows how to fix economic problems.   And now he’s teaching the US government how to fix its current crisis.  Lundgren was Finance Minister during the Swedish banking crisis of the early 1990′s and the solution, at the time, was easy: big government intervention in the form of cash and (part) government ownership of ailing banks.  Call [...]

Foods I Live On Part I: Kashi Autumn Wheat, Trader Joe’s Prunes, Genovo Tonno/Tuna, Fage Yogurt, and Bird’s Eye Soybeans

Foods I Live On Part I: Kashi Autumn Wheat, Trader Joe’s Prunes, Genovo Tonno/Tuna, Fage Yogurt, and Bird’s Eye Soybeans

Lets face it, most folks eat the same food products day in and day out (for the most part) and even as a self described “Foodie” I also fall right in line with the aforementioned way of eating.  So here’s a quick list of foods I tend to eat very often (note: I try to have tuna only once a [...]

How The Use of Statistics Killed the Banking Industry or How Statistics Can Fool You

How The Use of Statistics Killed the Banking Industry or How Statistics Can Fool You

If you’re fully engaged in the modern world then you’ve probably used statistics to make arguments and push a particular interest (like predicting orders or market conditions, if you work at a consumer product company, for example). Nassim Nicholas Taleb, in both his book, The Black Swan, and more recently in his essay, THE FOURTH QUADRANT: A MAP OF THE LIMITS [...]

Split: A Divided America – Watch Before You Vote in November

Split: A Divided America – Watch Before You Vote in November

Why are Americans so divided when it comes to political choice?  The 2008 documentary Split: A Divided America takes a close look at the current state of American politics and the problems surrounding how we choose and elect a President. The movie is a must see before heading out to vote in November.  Here’s the trailer and the official documentary [...]

Are Too Many People Going To College?

Are Too Many People Going To College?

Charles Murray has written a brilliant essay (Are Too Many People Going to College) on the value of a BA and the dark side of encouraging every 17 year old to strive for an undergraduate education. In my view, every high school guidance counselor and parent should be required to read Murray’s essay.  Here’s Murray on becoming a top electrician versus an average office [...]

Does Time Equal Money? The Time Paradox by Phillip Zimbardo

Does Time Equal Money? The Time Paradox by Phillip Zimbardo

Just how is time perceived and has the concept of time changed across human history?  Phillip Zimbardo aims to answer the above questions in his new book, The Time Paradox. Zimbardo touches on a few “fun facts” surrounding human perception, attitudes, and facts towards time, for example: Individuals living near the equator tend to be less “future oriented” and more concerned [...]