Parisian Family Office, CEO. Began Wall Street, 1982. Founded investment firm, CHIPPEWA PARTNERS, Native American Advisors. Active Trader. White Earth Chippewa Tribal member. Was NYSE/FINRA arb. Conservative, raised on Great Plains reservations. Pureblood, clot-shot free. In a world elevated on a dopamine binge, this is his take! Written from MT Ghost Ranch on the Yellowstone River, TN farm Pamelot or San Jose del Cabo, Mexico, CASA TULE'. Always been, will always be, an optimist.
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Sunday, June 20, 2010
The investment banker was impressed by the quality of the fish and asked the Mexican how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied, "Only a little while." The banker then asked why he didn't stay out longer and catch more fish?
The Mexican fisherman replied he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.
The American then asked "But what do you do with the rest of your time?"
The Mexican fisherman replied, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siesta with my wife, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos: I have a full and busy life, senor."
The investment banker scoffed, "I am an Ivy League MBA, and I could help you. You could spend more time fishing and with the proceeds buy a bigger boat, and with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats until eventually you would have a whole fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to the middleman you could sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You could control the product, processing and distribution."
Then he added, "Of course, you would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City where you would run your growing enterprise."
The Mexican fisherman asked, "But senor, how long will this all take?"
To which the American replied, "15-20 years."
"But what then?" asked the Mexican.
The American laughed and said, "That's the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You could make millions."
"Millions, senor? Then what?"
To which the investment banker replied, "Then you would retire. You could move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."
Saturday, June 19, 2010
I find it rather strange how these people (including our own government) are so quick to help Haiti and other countries...but sit on their butts for this Gulf disaster.
Just another reason to toss out every incumbent to try and get some sanity back in place. Kill this stupidity before it happens folks. The Georgia DOT, braind-dead. Read this and see if you can figure it out.........How about building some MARTA trains out to where people live? Try that for common-sense.
ATLANTA, Ga. -- Love 'em or hate 'em, here they come:
Toll lanes are on the way to Metro Atlanta, starting on Interstate-85, beginning next year.
Each of the current, I-85 HOV lanes, between Spaghetti Junction in DeKalb County and Old Peachtree Road in Gwinnett County -- the north-bound HOV lane and the south-bound HOV lane -- will become an electronic toll lane, a High Occupancy Toll, or "HOT," lane.
But not everyone will have to pay the toll.
Here's the deal:
Any driver with three or more people in the vehicle -- that's the driver and at least two passengers -- will not have to pay. Those drivers will be able to use the new toll lane for free.
So, by late summer or early fall of 2011, anyone will be able to use the inside lane, north of Spaghetti Junction, in both directions.
But if there are fewer than three people in your vehicle, you will pay a toll when you're in that inside lane.
There won't be any toll booths.
It'll all be electronic. Automatic.
"Everybody that uses the lane will have to register and get a transponder" installed in each vehicle, said Teri Pope, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Department of Transportation.
Pope said she is still learning, herself, the technical capabilities of the new system and how it will know not to charge you if there are three or more people in your vehicle.
There will be new enforcement cameras on I-85 every quarter-mile, and she said that the cameras will be linked, somehow, electronically, to the transponder in your vehicle. Combined with police patrols, Pope said they'll know who to charge, and when -- and also who to ticket.
Toll rates aren't decided, yet. But you'll automatically pay more to use the toll lane during rush hour.
"It's like the old law of supply and demand," Pope said. "If the normal lanes are really congested and full, like on a Friday afternoon, it'll cost you more to ride I-85 [in the HOT lane] northbound than it would [in the HOT lane] southbound."
"If I can get down the road faster for a dollar, I'll jump in that lane, if I'm by myself in the car," said Alexis Sanderson, who drives a delivery truck up and down that stretch of I-85 several times each weekday.
Sanderson wonders what will happen if everybody else does that.
"More people are going to do the same thing, so it's going to cause more congestion in that lane, which, again will slow up more traffic."
In fact, Georgia DOT hopes to minimize congestion in the toll lane through pricing. As more vehicles move into the lane, the toll escalates. The price will instantly, temporarily, go up, and up some more, compelling drivers to avoid the higher tolls by clearing out of the lane, making room for the vehicles that have three or more people in them (that are traveling in the lane for free).
Prices will automatically go back down at the times of the day when fewer drivers would want to use the toll lanes.
Some parents like Rose Paul don't like that they'll have to pay for what is now a free HOV lane for one parent and one child.
"I bring my children with me so that I can get into the HOV lane and get out of traffic," Paul said. "But if it's just two people, I don't think it's fair to charge. I don't."
The DOT says "managed lanes" to reduce traffic congestion are probably here to stay. The I-85 test will, if successful, lead to all the other HOV lanes in Metro Atlanta becoming HOT lanes.
"The difference," Pope said, "really, is -- an option to choose to pay, in order to, by yourself, get into that lane."
The State Road and Tollway Authority will manage the distribution of transponders and the collection of tolls.
The DOT has not released any estimates, yet, of how much money will be raised from the tolls, but does plan to spend the tolls on interstate maintenance.
In July, Georgia DOT will receive bids from contractors; DOT hopes to have a contractor hired and the work underway by August, and expects the conversion from HOV lane to HOT lane will be completed in one year.
The project is expected to cost $140 million.
The state received a $110 million grant from the Federal Highway Administration and the U.S. Department of Transportation for the project. GA DOT is spending $30 million of state gas tax money on the project.
The $140 million project also involves doubling the size of the Park and Ride lot at I-985 and Georgia Highway 20, building a new Park and Ride lot at I-85 and Hamilton Mill Rd., and buying at least 30 more buses for GRTA, the Georgia Regional Transportation Authority.
Installation of the sensors, circuitry, cameras and other aspects of the conversion will take place at nights and weekends to minimize disruption.
A flurry of fines and mounting public pressure on blueberry farmers is only the opening salvo, Labor Secretary Hilda L. Solis said in an interview. Ms. Solis, the daughter of an immigrant farm worker, said she was making enforcement of farm-labor rules a priority. At the same time, Congress is considering whether to rewrite the law that still allows 12-year-olds to work on farms during the summer with almost no limits.
The blueberry crop has been drawing workers to eastern North Carolina for decades, but as the harvest got under way in late May, growers stung by bad publicity and federal fines were scrambling to clean up their act, even going beyond the current law to keep all children off the fields. The growers were also ensuring that the workers, mainly Hispanic immigrants, would make at least the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
“I picked blueberries last year, and my 4-year-old brother tried to, but he got stuck in the mud,” said Miguel, a 12-year-old child of migrants. “The inspectors fined the farmers, and this year no kids are allowed.”
Child and rights advocates said they were encouraged by these signs of federal resolve, but they were also waiting to see how wide and lasting the changes would be. Across the country, hundreds of thousands of children under 18 toil each year, harvesting crops from apples to onions, according to a recent report by Human Rights Watch detailing hazards to their health and schooling and criticizing the Labor Department for past inaction.
“The news from North Carolina shows the value of strong enforcement,” said Zama Coursen-Neff, a lawyer with Human Rights Watch and the report’s author. “We also need to change the law to make sure this isn’t a flash in the pan.”
Unannounced visits to several fields here by a reporter and by migrant aid groups, and interviews with workers from more than a dozen blueberry farms, indicate that the changes — for this crop and this region — are real.
Soon after dawn, the vans stream through the roads here, ferrying migrant workers from trailer camps to blueberry farms, where they pluck the fragile fruits for 10 hours or more.
“Last year, the fields were filled with children, so this is encouraging,” said Emily Drakage, North Carolina regional coordinator of the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs, a national network of state and private agencies.
Beyond barring children from the fields, growers here also spruced up migrants’ trailers and barracks and adopted scanners to record the buckets of berries collected by each worker.
A federal law adopted in 1938 exempts agriculture from child-labor rules that apply to other industries. It permits children 12 and up to work without limits outside of school hours, exposing them, critics say, to pesticides that may pose a special threat to growing bodies and robbing too many of childhood itself.
After years of what rights groups said was lax attention, the Labor Department this week announced a large increase in the fines that farmers can face for employing children, to as much as $11,000 per child, from around $1,000.
On May 24, the department fined a labor contractor and a farmer in Arizona more than $30,000 for employing 10- and 11-year-old children, underpaying workers and other violations.
In an interview, Ms. Solis said she had added more than 250 workplace investigators, bringing the department’s total to near 1,000, and started a campaign to educate workers about their rights. Acknowledging that officials had sometimes ignored child farm violations in the past, she added, “I am totally changing the direction of this department.”
But to make deep inroads, Congress would first have to change the law. A proposal to ban the hiring of 12- and 13-year-olds, cap working hours by 14- and 15-year-olds and keep teenagers out of hazardous jobs is gaining support in Congress. Some 91 representatives have co-sponsored the Care Act, put forth by Lucille Roybal-Allard, Democrat of California.
Senator Tom Harkin, Democrat of Iowa, said he planned to introduce a similar bill in the Senate. The American Farm Bureau, the nation’s largest farm lobbying organization, has opposed it, saying it could imperil the tradition of children working in farm communities.
This spring’s restrictions on teenagers in North Carolina were unsettling for some parents who said they counted on their earnings, and for teenage migrants, some traveling on their own.
“I need to help pay our own way,” said Edgar, 15, who has helped support two younger siblings since his mother rushed back to Mexico in 2009 for a family emergency. Last spring, he often skipped school to spend 10-hour days picking blueberries, he said. He was disappointed to be turned away by a farm on a recent Saturday and hoped that growers would let him work after the school year ended.
Migrant farm workers, many of them Mexicans who are in the country illegally, remain desperately poor, traveling across the country for sporadic stretches of backbreaking work, vulnerable to gouging by contractors and afraid to complain. Although a federal program tries to aid migrant children with their education, few finish high school.
The Migrant Head Start program aims to give parents an alternative to taking infants and toddlers into the fields. Here in Bladen County, a new Head Start center opened in 2008. It provides free day care to 138 children but still falls short of the need.
In nearby Wayne County, Celidania Diaz, who has worked there for nine years, planned to start picking when Head Start’s free bus service began in her area the following week.
“With the kids, the farms are very strict now,” she said. “It was better before, because if you didn’t have someone to take care of the kids, you could take them along.”
Her family’s situation is typical: they and a second family share an aging trailer, paying $50 a week each. The workers also pay $6 a day to a van owner to transport them to farms nearly two hours away. On good days, in fields where plump berries are still plentiful, they may earn $80 to $100, filling four buckets an hour at $2.50 a bucket to surpass the minimum wage. But when it rains, the berries are too fragile to pick and they cannot work.
Blueberry farmers here, like George Mote Jr., insist that they have never wanted children in their fields but that parents would sneak them in; rights groups say the farmers often looked the other way.
Shaken by fines imposed last August on 9 blueberry farms and 17 labor contractors in North Carolina, owners this spring played it safe by going beyond the law to bar anyone under 16 from the fields. But some farmers said that when school ended this month, they would allow younger teenagers to work, as the law allows.
Rafaela, 35, who lives in a three-bedroom trailer with her two children and six men placed there temporarily by a labor contractor, said not all parents supported strong controls on work by teenagers. “In the summertime when there’s no school, I think it’s O.K.,” said Rafaela, who did not provide her last name because she feared scrutiny by immigration officials. “But to take them out of school, that’s not right.”
Friday, June 18, 2010
Next week the Congressional derivatives hearings are going to be one of the bigger farces to come out of Washington DC. Have a great weekend gang, eat something good, get some exercise, and think about how lucky you are to live in America.
ps. I hope the wonderful employees at Intermap Technologies are as tired and fed-up with the dilution as we are. Disgusting for sure.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
America needs ObamaCare like Nancy Pelosi needs a Halloween mask. - Leno
Q: Have you heard about McDonald's new Obama Value Meal?
A: Order anything you like and the guy behind you has to pay for it. -Conan O'Brien
Q: What does Barack Obama call lunch with a convicted felon?
A: A fund raiser. - Leno
Q: What's the difference between Obama's cabinet and a penitentiary?
A: One is filled with tax evaders, blackmailers and threats to society. The other is for housing prisoners. - Letterman
Q: If Nancy Pelosi and Obama were on a boat in the middle of the ocean and it started to sink, who would be saved?
A: America ! - Fallon
Q: What's the difference between Obama and his dog, Bo?
A: Bo has papers. - Kimmel
Q: What was the most positive result of the "Cash for Clunkers" program?
A: It took 95% of the Obama bumper stickers off the road. - Letterman
And the best of all:
Q: What's the real problem with Barack Obama jokes?
A: His followers don't think they're funny and everyone else
doesn't think they're jokes.
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Typical North Fulton. All horse, no cowboy. Where's the beef?
Monday, June 14, 2010
The old rancher says, "Okay, but do not go in that field over there", as he points out the location.
The DEA officer verbally explodes saying, "Mister, I have the authority of the Federal Government with me!" Reaching into his rear pants pocket, he removes his badge and proudly displays it to the rancher. "See this badge? This badge means I am allowed to go wherever I wish.....on any one's land, at any time. No questions asked or answers given. Have I made myself clear? Do you understand?"
The old rancher nods politely and shakes his head. He apologizes rather softly and goes about his chores.
A short time later, the old rancher hears loud screams and sees the DEA officer running for his life chased close behind by the ranchers prized Angus bull. With every step the bull is gaining ground on the officer, and it seems likely that he'll get "horned" before reaching the safety of the fence. The officer is clearly terrified.
The old rancher throws down his tools, runs to the fence and yells at the top of his lungs....."Your badge, your badge, show him your badge!"