Powder Blue Report

News, finance, politics, sports, and fun from the west coast

Monday, August 30, 2004

First Night at the RNC Convention

What a start ladies and gentlemen. WOW. So many good things tonight...where to begin, I guess I should start with the opening speech by Ron Silver. This was a great introductory speech and it set the tone for the whole night. He talked about growing up in New York and the tragic day of September 11, 2001. He spoke of all the citizens that were murdered that day. It was a very emotional moment for everyone there and a lot of viewers at home. He strongly endorsed Bush for re-election. It was a great start to the night.

Next we had Senator John McCain. He's not someone that I imagined giving a keynote address for President Bush, but he gave a great speech also. He also slammed Michael Moore for being "that disingenuous movie maker". He had me right there. I was screaming my approval. It was some great needed red meat for the delegates and viewers at home. His first part of the speech looked like he was not quite comfortable yet, but as it went on, he got stronger and stronger in his support for President Bush. I think the speech played well to the swing voters out there also. After the speech, I snuck a peek at how the Bush re-elect futures were doing. I had a hunch things were going well and I was not disappointed. The contract was up to about 58.9 as I recall. That was up from 57.5 during the day. Not bad for the night and we still had Rudy's speech to handicap.

Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani gave the best speech of the night in my opinion. He hit all the right themes. It was emotional for me and most of the delegates as he was recalling that fatefull day on 9/11/01. He related a bunch of personal anecdotes and also had a lot of humor mixed in his speech. He hammered John Kerry for being a flip flopper. He was definitely hitting paydirt talking about how John Kerry has taken both sides of the issues during his Senate career and so far in the campaign. Again I think this speech played very well to the conservative to moderate democrats out there who have not made up their minds yet and it also I think solidified any lingering doubts that Republicans have for this election. All and all, it was a great start to the week. A side note, as I watched Chris Matthews after Rudy's speech, I gotta hand it to Chris, "we just saw Rudy Guiliani fillet John Kerry in front of our eyes"...indeed we did, wasn't it a beautiful thing.

Tom Dascle's Hypocracy

If anyone needs any more reason to defeat Tom Dascle, all one has to do is look at the new campaign ad that he is running back in South Dakota. he is shown hugging President Bush and praising him for his leadership for the war on terror. Why vote for Dascle when you can get a true friend of George Bush like John Thune. Here is a link.

Start Spreading The News..........

The Republicans are coming to NYC baby for our quadrennial convention. This should be a fun week. Bush has a lot of momentum heading into the convention and he will likely be further padding his lead as the week goes by. I'll be providing my insight and analysis all week for everyone on all goings on at the convention. Sen McCain is first up tonight for the keynote. The protestors should be lingering all week too because most of them probably don't have real jobs.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

A Few Thoughts on NYC Protesters

First, they need to come up with some new original slogans. I watched C-SPAN for a couple hours today and here is what I saw: A lot of really ugly people, signs of "Bush=Liar", lots of tie dye hippie looking people, cops laughing at the protesters, people yelling "Fox News sucks"(hint to Fox News...keep up the good work!...it's working), tired slogan of "hey hey ho ho George Bush has to go", people carrying a big Palestinian flag yelling "intifada"( I wonder if that means for them that they side with terrorists, after all, that's what Hamas is all about, just wondering), the usual feminist suspects carrying NOW and "keep abortion legal" signs, lots of dudes kissing and holding hands, a small bonfire, 1000 fake flag draped coffins...I wonder why they didn't have 3000 coffins of the people that died on 9/11/2001...makes me wonder, etc,etc. I could go on, but you get the picture. Isn't it funny that the Republicans let all the freak protestors walk right by our convention venue and the Democrats didn't let protestors even near the Fleet center for their convention. For the last few years we keep hearing about dissent being stifled and John Ashcroft taking away all of our rights, I'd say today that the freaks had the run of the city. They had their protest. They didn't get silenced. I hope they keep this in mind next time they bitch about civil rights being taken away.

I Love It When I'm Right

I told people a couple days ago to go long the Bush re-elect contract. Did anyone take my advice? If you did you would be making money right now. You could have gotten filled at about 55. This morning the contract is trading at 57.5. My projection is for it to get to about 61 right after the convention. When the convention is over I would sell the Bush re-elect contract. Reason: after a run up like it had, it is going to pull back a little, again my guess is to expect a pullback maybe to 55-56. It is just the natural ebb and flow of the campaign.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

John O'Neil Voted For Al Gore in 2000

I know the liberals/Democrats out there think John O'Neil and his crew of swiftboat mates are part of Karl Roves team, but this article from the LA Times this morning pretty much puts that all to rest. Mr O'Neil's main thrust is to discredit John Kerry as a commander-in-chief. He has called Bush "an empty suit" privately to friends and fellow lawyers in the Houston area. Here's another quote from the article "I've lived a happy life, sure, but at least 15 of my friends died there," O'Neill said. "What I'm dealing with is a set of values that are above and beyond politics. And if following the truth — coming forward — elects Bush, we can accept that". Another side note, all the proceeds from the sale of Mr O'Neils book "Unfit For Command" are going to the Navy relief fund that helps families of killed soldiers financially.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Open Letter To John Kerry from Oliver North

Dear John,

As usual, you have it wrong. You don't have a beef with President George Bush about your war record. He's been exceedingly generous about your military service. Your complaint is with the 2.5 million of us who served honorably in a war that ended 29 years ago and which you, not the president, made the centerpiece of this campaign.

I talk to a lot of vets, John, and this really isn't about your medals or how you got them. Like you, I have a Silver Star and a Bronze Star. I only have two Purple Hearts, though. I turned down the others so that I could stay with the Marines in my rifle platoon. But I think you might agree with me, though I've never heard you say it, that the officers always got more medals than they earned and the youngsters we led never got as many medals as they deserved.

This really isn't about how early you came home from that war, either, John. There have always been guys in every war who want to go home. There are also lots of guys, like those in my rifle platoon in Vietnam, who did a full 13 months in the field. And there are, thankfully, lots of young Americans today in Iraq and Afghanistan who volunteered to return to war because, as one of them told me in Ramadi a few weeks ago, "the job isn't finished."

Nor is this about whether you were in Cambodia on Christmas Eve, 1968. Heck John, people get lost going on vacation. If you got lost, just say so. Your campaign has admitted that you now know that you really weren't in Cambodia that night and that Richard Nixon wasn't really president when you thought he was. Now would be a good time to explain to us how you could have all that bogus stuff "seared" into your memory -- especially since you want to have your finger on our nation's nuclear trigger.

But that's not really the problem, either. The trouble you're having, John, isn't about your medals or coming home early or getting lost -- or even Richard Nixon. The issue is what you did to us when you came home, John.

When you got home, you co-founded Vietnam Veterans Against the War and wrote "The New Soldier," which denounced those of us who served -- and were still serving -- on the battlefields of a thankless war. Worst of all, John, you then accused me -- and all of us who served in Vietnam -- of committing terrible crimes and atrocities.

On April 22, 1971, under oath, you told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that you had knowledge that American troops "had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the country side of South Vietnam." And you admitted on television that "yes, yes, I committed the same kind of atrocities as thousands of other soldiers have committed."

And for good measure you stated, "(America is) more guilty than any other body, of violations of (the) Geneva Conventions ... the torture of prisoners, the killing of prisoners."

Your "antiwar" statements and activities were painful for those of us carrying the scars of Vietnam and trying to move on with our lives. And for those who were still there, it was even more hurtful. But those who suffered the most from what you said and did were the hundreds of American prisoners of war being held by Hanoi. Here's what some of them endured because of you, John:

Capt. James Warner had already spent four years in Vietnamese custody when he was handed a copy of your testimony by his captors. Warner says that for his captors, your statements "were proof I deserved to be punished." He wasn't released until March 14, 1973.

Maj. Kenneth Cordier, an Air Force pilot who was in Vietnamese custody for 2,284 days, says his captors "repeated incessantly" your one-liner about being "the last man to die" for a lost cause. Cordier was released March 4, 1973.

Navy Lt. Paul Galanti says your accusations "were as demoralizing as solitary (confinement) ... and a prime reason the war dragged on." He remained in North Vietnamese hands until February 12, 1973.

John, did you think they would forget? When Tim Russert asked about your claim that you and others in Vietnam committed "atrocities," instead of standing by your sworn testimony, you confessed that your words "were a bit over the top." Does that mean you lied under oath? Or does it mean you are a war criminal? You can't have this one both ways, John. Either way, you're not fit to be a prison guard at Abu Ghraib, much less commander in chief.

One last thing, John. In 1988, Jane Fonda said: "I would like to say something ... to men who were in Vietnam, who I hurt, or whose pain I caused to deepen because of things that I said or did. I was trying to help end the killing and the war, but there were times when I was thoughtless and careless about it and I'm ... very sorry that I hurt them. And I want to apologize to them and their families."

Even Jane Fonda apologized. Will you, John?

I like the line, " Does that mean you lied under oath? Or does it mean you are a war criminal? Which one is it Sen Kerry?

The Embarrassment Is Complete

Team USA basketball is officially out of the gold medal running after tanking again today to that powerhouse from Argentina. Maybe we just have to face the fact that the Euros/world plays a better brand of basketball. Nevertheless, it is embarrassing.Here is the link

Wednesday, August 25, 2004


"I'm sinking fast, someone, anyone please save me, I've taken incoming fire and a direct hit on my hull". No this was not the 1969 John Kerry steering his swiftboat in the rivers on Vietnam, this was John Kerry heard by a fly on the wall as he phoned his campaign advisors tonight. You see, even the ultra liberal Left Angeles Times has Kerry starting to fade fast. I wish I could help you Senator Kerry. Maybe coming back from the war and grandstanding in a Senate commitee was not such a good idea after all.

High Drama in Irvine Last Night

Last night was one of the most surreal moments in Irvine's 33 year history. As they say, "politics make for strange bedfellows". This was definately on display night at the city council meeting. For those that aren't familiar with the story, recently it has come to the attention of council member Chris Mears ,who by the way ran on a slate with mayor Agran back in 2000, that Mayor Larry Agran's political consultant and former Irvine city council member himself Ed Dornan, was lobbying for a public utility for the city of Irvine. Mr Dornan had bragged to Mr Mears and Agran that he stood to benefit from this to the tune of possibly seven figures! Well the Drama started when Mr Dornan himself went to the well of the council chamber and started rattling off how he is such a great citizen,blah,blah,blah. When he was through, council member Christina Shea started asking him a few questions. After a couple of hard ones, Mr Dornan left the well while Mrs Shea continued to question him. He would not answer her questions and left a carefully worded statement that said he didn't have a financial interest in the ENCO project. Well the high drama started then when Mrs Shea asked city manager Allison Hart if during her meetings with Mr Dornan if he ever told her that he had a vested financial interest in making sure the ENCO deal goes through. Mrs Hart was put in a difficult spot, but answered "yes he did tell me that he stood to benefit". BUSTED! You could hear a collective gasp in the chamber by everyone that was present. Mr Agran should be ashamed of himself. As Mr Mears said, "what you did Larry was not illegal, but it doesn't pass the smell test". Mr Agran had tried to filibuster the whole night by having presentation after presentation and skirting the key issue of why this was agendized by council member Ward in the first place. Needless to say I think the utility deal is dead now. They ended the meeting by voting 3-2 to direct the city attorney to hire an outside counsel to get to the bottom of the matter.Here is the link for Scott Moxley's write up of the evening

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Kerry Phoned Vets After Dole Unloads....

What a surprise, Drudge has another world exclusive that John Kerry tried to phoned some fellow swifties late Sunday after Bob Dole unloaded on him. Kerry is getting rattled it looks like. He tried to meet with these guys , but they say that until he apologizes for all the hurtfull things he has said over the years that they will refuse to meet up with him.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Shout Out To Concerned Irvine Citizens

We need to show up en mass tomorrow August 24th at the bi-weekly Irvine City Council meeting. Please bring your bullhorns and opinions. We need to stop Larry Agran from turning his buddy Ed Dornan into a millionaire on the backs of Irvine taxpayers. We need to pack out the meeting chamber. I need to give props also to Chris Mears, who even though I disagree with him politically on almost every issue, had the balls to stand up to Larry Agran's machine and not have his ethics compromised. Here is another link to an OC Weekly article further detailing Mayor Agran's chutzpah.

Ted Kennedy on the "No Fly List" ???

I think this was just a beaureacratic foul up. He should be on the the "no drive list". Sorry about the mix up Ted. Go back to your cocktail hour with Chris Dodd.

Club For Growth Asserts Its Power Again

Well it took a recount, but Patrick McHenry has won by a landslide, 86 votes! The election was certified today by the North Carolina Secretary of State. Have I said that I love what the Club For Growth does yet :).

Another Jackson Loser...

This time though Michael will get a break from me, but Janet Jackson has opened her big fat mouth now. She actually believes that Bush used her "wardrobe malfunction" incident as a pretext to divert attention from the battle in Iraq. I'm sorry, but that has still got to be one of the all time greatest lines ever spoken, "wardrobe malfunction". Hey Janet, your brother Michael is having a life malfunction. How do like that? Your brother is a freak. He is using his freaky lifestyle to divert attention from all of his child molesting habits(alledgely).

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Call 911 Quick....A Recap of the Morning Shows

They're was a beating this morning on "Meet The Press" with Tim Russert. Sen Allen and Ken Mehlman just lit up their adversaries Sen Jon Corzine and Kerry spokeshole Tad Devine. It wasn't even fair. I know it was a beating because even the dem posters over at Daily Kos thought so. Hey we agree on something Democrats. You guys got your ass kicked this morning. Add to that the fact that the whole Kerry Vietnam,Christmas in Cambodia, swiftboat vet story has reached critical mass now. I didn't see John O Neil versus John Podesta, but I was again reading over at some dem blogs about how Podesta was so timid and O'Neil was just on his game. I see this week playing out right now as kerry continuing to try to defend his flank against the swiftboat vets. That's another week that he is being defined and not on the attack himself. Karl Rove has the Kerry campaign on its heels right now.

Political Futures Markets 101

A lot of people have been asking me recently how these political futures work. Here is a basic synopsis taken from Intrade's website.

Tell me what I'm trading
We've created an exchange for you to trade (speculate on) events that directly affect your life, like politics, entertainment, financial indicators, weather, current events and legal affairs - these are our trading categories.

Within each category we list a set of contracts, a contract is an event that will have an unambiguous result.

For example, some of our political contracts are: "Will George Bush be re-elected in 2004" or "Will John Kerry win the Democratic Nomination". Each one is an event with an unambiguous result, either George Bush will be re-elected or he won't.

You are trading (speculating on) what you think the outcome of that event will be.

Let's use one of our political contracts as an example - Will George Bush be re-elected President. There are only two possible outcomes for this contract - Yes, he will be re-elected or No, he will not.

When the election is over and the result is official, if George Bush gets re-elected that contract will close at 100. If on the other hand he fails to win the general election, the contract - Will George Bush be re-elected President - will close at 0.

However, until the election is over that contract will fluctuate in value between 0 and 100 just like a stock, reacting to the news of the day and buying & selling by you the trader.

Tell me what the prices mean
Since our contracts trade between 0 and 100, you can think of the price at any time to be the percentage probability of that event occurring. Let's go back to our George Bush example, on December 1, 2003 the George Bush re-election contract was trading at 63, meaning, traders gave him a 63% chance of being re-elected.

If you thought President Bush will be re-elected you would expect that price to go up - towards 100. In that case, if you bought one contract at 63 and Mr. Bush did get re-elected you would make the difference between your purchase price - 63 - and the closing price - 100 - or 37 points. How much profit would that be? Click here.

It's important to realize that you don't have to hold your contracts until the result of the event is decided - you can get out of your position at any time until the event is over. So if you change your mind about the outcome you can come back to the exchange, enter an order and close out your position, whether it's for a profit or loss depends on you.

Who determines the prices?

You do - along with thousands of traders around the world. Just like the price of Microsoft stock is determined by the buying & selling activities of thousands of traders in the financial markets, the price of our contracts are determined by traders, like you, who are confident enough to back up their opinion by risking real money.

How do I calculate profits and losses?
Think in terms of points, when a contract trades from 63 to 73 - that's 10 points. Each point is worth 10¢.

If you bought one George Bush re-election contract at 63 and he does win the election, that contract will close, or settle, at 100. Your profit will be 37 points x 10¢ per each point or $3.70.

Settlement price – purchase price = your profit


100 – 63 = 37 points X 10¢ per point = $3.70 a profit

On the other hand, if he does not win re-election that contract will settle at 0 and your loss would be 63 points.

0 – 63 = – 63 X 10¢ per point = – $6.30 a loss

Remember, you do NOT have to hold onto any contracts you buy or sell until the election, you can trade out of them any time!

Let’s take another example, you buy 6 contracts at 50 in the morning and sell them out at 73 later that day. You collect 23 points (73 – 50) times 6 contracts times $.10 for each point or $13.80 in profit.

23 points X 6 contracts X $.10 = $13.80

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Nightmare errr Dreamteam Loses Again

Someone needs to put this dog out of it's misery. This is an embarrasment. The US mens basketball team lost again tonight to that powerhouse team from Lithuania. I didn't see any of the game, but obviously from reading the box score, we got outscored again from the three point line. I refuse to watch these guys anymore.

Bush Heading to Athens????

Drudge is reporting that Bush is planning a secret trip to Athens. Well if he was it's not a secret anymore. Someone leaked it it sounds like. That's to bad. It would have been a nice surprise to find out right before the Soccer final that Bush was going to be present. Now that the cat is out of the bag so to speak, He probably will scrub the trip because of security. Who knows.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Now Let's Talk About Something Important...

St.Louis Rams football! This should be a decent year. We have alot of new faces & coaches on the defensive side of the ball. Lovie Smith has flew the coop and landed in Chicago as their head coach. On the offensive side of the ball, it appears that Mike Martz is reshaping the offense from "The Greatest Show on Turf" into smashmouth football. They definately have the talent on offense. As usual with most NFL teams, staying relatively injury free is always the main concern. We unloaded Kurt Warner to the NY Giants and now he is their problem. It leaves Marc Bulger as the only proven QB under center though. Marshall Faulk is back healthy, but he gets banged a few times during the season, so having depth at running back is going to be important. I am predicting a 9-7 year for them with the playoffs just eluding them.

Kerry Files FEC Action to Muzzle Swiftboat Vets

Cue the baby crying music.

Rather than coping factually with the ever-expanding allegations of exaggeration and untruth in his Vietnam record, John F...ing Kerry is now trying to get the Federal Election Commission to sanction the Bush campaign for collusion with the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. Isn't it so sad? Here is the link

Swiftboat Vets Ads Exacting Tolls on Kerry

John Kerry can scream, piss and moan all he wants about the swiftboat vets ad, but his campaign is taking on water. After two weeks of just getting crushed by these vets, Kerry has risen to the bait and now, even though the mainstream news didn't want to report any news about this story, they have been forced to. Kerry is just reaping what he has sown. They tried in vain to portray him during the DNC convention as a moderate, strong commander-in-chief personality. Now that Kerry is getting outed by the swiftboat vets, his whole veneer of being a moderate is getting shattered. Also I didn't know if everyone was aware of it or not, but John Kerry has actually served for twenty years now in the Senate as the most liberal Senator there out of the 100 as reported by National Journal. He has alot of 'slpaining to do.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Larry Agran in Hot Water

For all of you reading my blog, please indulge me a little for some news on my beautiful city of Irvine's corrupt mayor it has finally been shown. Our mayor, Larry Agran, is a liberal democrat mayor in a pretty conservative city. He actually ran for President of the United States back in 1992. That is how narcissistic this man is. He has now been caught with hand in the proverbial cookie jar. Here is the smoking gun article by R. Scott Moxley of The OC Weekly, a very liberal weekly by the way. Props to Scott for getting the story out. It must be killing him. Anyway, here is the story....

August 20 - 26, 2004

Say You're Gay, Larry!

Irvine Mayor Agran could learn damage control from New Jersey Governor McGreevey

by R. Scott Moxley

Last week's crisis-management effort by scandal-plagued New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevey should have inspired Irvine Mayor Larry Agran. McGreevey revealed he's gay, acknowledged having an extramarital affair with a man and, in a move that scored big polling points, announced he'll resign rather than further disgrace his office. Many quickly hailed the governor's apparent candor, even though McGreevey didn't mention that he also showered the object of his affections with government favors.

For the past three weeks, Agran has contemplated how he might defuse a potentially career-ruining scandal of his own. This one doesn't involve sex; this being Irvine, the controversy isn't even sexy. It surrounds a proposed municipal utility deal.

But like the McGreevey mess, Orange County's lone progressive mayor stands accused of abusing his power to help enrich a friend.

Official records show (and Agran's City Council colleagues say) Agran steered a lucrative deal to an energy company with troubling and, until recently, unpublicized ties to Ed Dornan. There's no mystery that representatives of ENCO Utility Services would use Dornan's former longtime English instructor at Orange Coast College as one of their energy lobbyists. He's Agran's closest political adviser, campaign fund-raiser and confidante. Dornan could pocket more than a million dollars if the city approves the deal, according to former Agran ally Councilman Chris Mears.

The Orange County Republican Party is already betting the scandal is big enough to drive the mayor from office. Agran, a man who has made a career out of publicizing the hypocrisies of his opponents, gets to figure his way out of the mess fast.

Following McGreevey, Agran might out himself, acknowledge a gay extramarital affair and resign. Such sleight of hand worked for McGreevey: a sex-obsessed media quickly lost sight of McGreevey's myriad other and arguably more serious scandals involving government malfeasance. Though Agran's not gay, he could pull a McGreevey, acknowledging that his sincere bid to create a public-private utility was, well, "easily misunderstood" by the electorate and resign. That would take Agran out of the race and with him countless other scandals now rumored at Irvine City Hall. The tsunami of Republican money building for the November race would collapse weakly, and progressives might still survive the coming elections.

Agran, apparently, will have none of this.

In his 1999 book, Truth to Tell, former Bill Clinton aide Lanny Davis offered post-Lewinsky advice on how best to weather a budding scandal: tell the truth, Davis said. "Tell it early, tell it all, tell it yourself." McGreevey adopted two-thirds of that guidance. Agran has adopted none.

Instead, Agran, a Democrat, is using Dick Nixon's failed 1974 playbook. Let's give the mayor's PR strategy an acronym: IDOA ignore, deny, obfuscate and attack.

In the initial stage, Agran ignored all Weekly interview requests about Dornan and ENCO, apparently hoping our Aug. 4 exposé would die anonymously. That didn't happen. Similar embarrassing articles soon appeared in two other newspapers. That was the beginning of the second stage, when the mayor decided to talk with Jenn Stewart of the Irvine World News. He denied the importance of the Dornan-ENCO relationship. Instead, Agran a Harvard-trained lawyer and veteran politician who sought the 1992 Democratic presidential nomination posed as an untarnished public servant. "It's my job to get the best possible decision for the city and its residents" in the energy pact, he told Stewart in an Aug. 5 story. "You'll see there's nothing suggesting that I am doing anything illegal, unethical or self-dealing."

If Agran was frustrated by the mounting attention, it only got worse. Reporter Jean Pasco of the Los Angeles Times called. She wanted an interview for her article that would appear in her paper's widely circulated Sunday edition ("Ex-Comrade Questions Agran Ethics," Aug. 8). The mayor shifted tactics a third time. He agreed to an interview, this time acknowledged the Dornan-ENCO tie, but resorted to pure obfuscation. Dornan wasn't anyone special, Agran told Pasco. "What's corrupt about a private individual having a business relationship with a private firm that may or may not do business with the city?" he asked.

Mears, who was Agran's closest ally on the council until the Dornan-ENCO revelations, has the answer: plenty.

"Larry has become a political boss consumed by an insatiable ego and is so driven for more power that, sadly, he doesn't know how utterly foolish he looks," said Mears. "Dornan is merely a private citizen? That's pathetic. Ed Dornan is Larry's right-hand man. If a Republican tried that excuse, the old Larry would have pounced without mercy."

Such blunt talk may have put Mears, who decided not to run for re-election, in Agran's crosshairs. "I know it's hard to understand, but Larry sees himself as the victim here, and he wants to punish Chris for betraying him," said one source familiar with the dispute.

Personal attacks on Mears are indeed under way. The Agran camp has spread several nasty rumors. In one ridiculous scenario, the mayor's ardent supporters are alleging that Mears is mentally unstable.

Cheap shots might feel good, but they won't solve Agran's looming PR problem: his own waning credibility as he and his slate of Beth Krom, Sukhee Kang and Debbie Coven seek to control the City Council after the November elections. There's probably not a more educated electorate in California than Irvine's. Will they accept Agran's cries of innocence, or will they be sickened by another scheme to give a pal a seat at the public trough?


Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Press Release From Intrade: Re: Bush Convention Bounce & McGreevey Situation

Here is a link to a press release that Intrade put out today showing a real life example of how political futures markets react to events. When McGreevey announced that he was resigning, the Bush contract for New Jersey spiked about eight points. It went from ten to eighteen almost instantly. Also of note, traders are keeping their powder dry as to whether Bush will get a bounce out of his convention. We should know if he will by the third day or so of the convention.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

The Dreamteam is more like a Nightmare

What is up with our Olympic basketball team losing to Puerto Rico. They were hardly even trying. I think the days of using NBAers should end. Most of the guys out there looked burned out. They didn't have any energy or passion. We should get back to using college guys who have not been through an 82 game regular season plus multiple playoff games. We just got a good old fashioned ass-kicking. I'll be surprised if they even get a medal if they keep playing like the way they played today.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Asa Gets Grilled in Temecula Today

U.S Rep Darrell Issa held a townhall style meeting today in Temecula on the illegal immigration issue with Undersecretary of Homeland Defense Asa Hutchinson as his guest. I don't know what Darrell was expecting, he tried to run interference for Asa, but the crowd was not swayed a bit by this slight of hand. The crowd "gets it" and Hutchison looked like a deer in the headlights. I think he was expecting a normal suburban Republican townhall meeting where everyone is kissing ass with the politicians, but instead he got the angry mob demanding answers about the interior border sweeps. One of the questions Asa asked the crowd was for intelligence of where all the illegals were. The crowd started yelling "Home Depot". It was totally hilarious yet totally accurate. Our politicians don't get it about illegal immigration but the average citizen does. They need to keep the interior enforcement up because it is effective and it is a great deterent. John & Ken showed up at the rally with their trademark bullhorn and a broom symbolizing the need to keep the interior sweeps going. Asa kept asking Darrell to come to his rescue, but the crowd was not buying his act. We need to send a message to these stupid politicians until they get it. I also noted that today was the deadline for David Dreier to appear on John & Ken's radio show and he did not make it. He is about to find out about the power of the "angry mob" as J&K have coined their listeners. We tossed out a child molester judge in Orange county and recalled a governor with their megaphone on KFI and we are about to show David Dreier the power of the illegal immigration as an issue. I think David Dreier is a great guy, but he just doesn't get it. He will in November.

Look Out Ft. Meyers

The NOAA has just upgraded "Charley" to a category 4 hurricane. Not good. I hope everyone down there has taken shelter because this one is gonna be huge.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

A Bad Day For Gays Gets Worse...

Gov Jim Mcgreevey(D) of New Jersey held a news conference today announcing that "I am a gay American". One of his former male aides had resigned awhile back under a cloud of suspicion. We found out today that the aide is filing a sexual harassment suit against the Governor. With all this hanging over Gov. McGreevey's head, he will be submitting his resignation effective November 15th of this year. This is such a sad story on so many levels. He was a husband and a father. His career was on a upward trajectory that had unlimited potential, but he squandered it all to have an extramarital affair with another guy!

California Supreme Court Voids Gay Marriages

Just when I thought California had gone over the liberal edge, The Ca. Supreme Court today announced that they are voiding all gay marriages that happened about six months ago. This brings a little sanity back into process in my opinion. If the people of California wanted gay marriage, they would have voted for it when it was on the ballot a few years ago. As it stands right now though, mayors do not have free reign to hand out marriage licenses like Gavin Newsome did. I'm sure that gay marriage proponents are filling out their appeal to the Ninth Circuit as I'm writing this. I am predicting right here and now that the Ninth Circus err Circuit will overturn the California Supreme Court ruling and that the US Supremes will have to again slap the liberal 9th judges back down.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Wal-Mart Persona Non Grata in L.A.

So Los Angeles has passed an anti Wal-Mart ordinance, I'm shocked, NOT. They say if they let Wal-Mart into L.A. to open more stores that it would cost the city & state something like 86 million dollars in welfare & health care benefits because Wal-Mart is not unionized, but they don't mind shelling out 5 billion a year for illegal alien services. What am I missing here? Nothing except blatant hypocracy by Los Angeles, but I am not surprised. They don't mind paying for all the illegal alien services, that's okay by them, but absorbing a little cost for Wal-Mart is bad. As former congressman Jim Traficant of Ohio used to say, "beam me up Mr Speaker!"

Huge GOP Senate Primary Tonight

It's the beer magnate and RINO Pete Coors versus the true conservative, Bob Schaffer. Coors has had the $$$$ advantage, but Schaffer has a better message. The polls are just about even for this race. It should be a long night for both of them. Here is the story from the Denver Post.

Hillary Back to the Futures???

Doesn't this picture say it all. After turning $1000 into $100,000(a statistical improbability!) on cattle futures in a couple weeks back in the 80's, Hillary is back at the scene of the crime so to speak as she rang the opening bell at the New York Mercantile Exchange today. The caption the picture shoulda read, "Wow, I made alot of money in futures". By the way, the firm where she had her brokerage account was busted by the CFTC for placing illegal "out trades" in her account. Those are trades that happened after the end of trading and are prohibited by rule. Some how though, she always managed to beat the rap.

Monday, August 09, 2004

Weekend Report

I hope everyone had a great weekend. Not much happened in the news over the past few days. I watched the NFL Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Barry Sanders still looked like he is in game shape. John Elway also made it in the Hall. I gotta give that guy his props. He was a great NFL quarterback. I can remember all those Superbowls that Denver lost in the 80's and I never thought Elway could lead them to a victory in the big game. I was wrong. They won two in a row in the late 90's. That's it for this morning, i'm out.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Louisiana Rep Switches to GOP

In a move that stunned Washington and Louisiana Democrats, Rep Rodney Alexander has switched parties and has joined the Republican caucus. Welcome home Rodney. You voted like a Republican for the last year and a half. You might as well reap some of the benefits that goes along with being in the majority party for years to come. This makes the Democrats hurdle for taking control all the more difficult this November. This must drive Nancy Pelosi and her caucus nuts. I love it.

Swap Meet Continues for the Lakers

Geesh. .They traded Gary Payton aka "The Glove" and Rick Foxx today to the Celtics for a couple of scrubs and conditional draft pick next year. Maybe we can score Peja from Sacramento while we're at it.

How Do the Super Rich Stay That Way???

I have done alot of research on this topic. The are many different ways they do this. William Danko talks alot about this subject in his book "The Millionaire Next Door" and the "Millionaire Mind". One of the types of investments that alot of super rich people use are hedge funds and managed futures. These are investment vehicles that most people know nothing about or don't have access to. Some of the ones that my clients are in are up over 500% in the last four years with basically a flat stock market during that time. I also must emphasize that there is risk with these investments just like there is risk when your money is in the stock market and past performance does not indicate future results. I am a managed futures specialist at Excel Futures and if anyone would like to discuss these investment vehecles, please give a call at the office, (888)959-9955

Stock Market Advice

This thread is for anyone who loves trading the markets and also wants to be proactive when it comes to your portfolio. We broke a key support level today on the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Average. It is my feeling that we are headed lower next week and in the short term. How low are we headed you may ask? I wish I had a crystal ball, I don't know. I do know that once the S&P broke 1077 today that it was headed lower. I love talking the stock market and different stratagies & investments with people. If anyone wants to call me at the office, my number is (888)959-9955.

Rick "She's a Super Freak" James is dead

Anyone have Rick James in their deadpool? If you do then you earn some points today. Best known for his hit song "Super Freak", Rick James is dead today at the age of 56. I also remember when MC Hammer ripped off James' song Super Freak and created "Hammer Time".

Bad Jobs Report Today...

and the Bush re-elect futures contract is down two points to 52%. There's not much to spin here by the Bush campaign. While I agree that with them that the Labor Dept. stats don't measure alot of other types of jobs like self-employment,independent contractors and entrepeneurs, it doesn't change the fact that most people just look at the Labor Dept stats. The bond market had a huge rally this morning as well. What does all this mean? Bush is behind a little in the media polls , but he is still the favorite according to the all important futures market. My prediction is that he will come out of the convention tied in the polls and about right where he is today in the futures. The debates and or a future event are going to decide the election.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Crash Course on Political Futures...

I found this article by a guy named Jim Garven. It is must reading for political prognosticators. I copied and pasted the article here.It is from about one week ago.

Political "futures" markets

The idea of relying upon futures markets prices to forecast future events has an interesting history. Nearly 20 years ago, Richard Roll published a paper in the American Economic Review entitled "Orange Juice and Weather" which showed, among other things, that the futures market in orange juice concentrate is a better predictor of Florida weather than the National Weather Service. Since the only way one can earn excess profits in a speculative market is to gain an informational advantage over the competition, traders are strongly motivated to try to do just that. As I noted in my previous blog entry about political "futures" markets if markets are informationally efficient, it follows that market prices represent unbiased forecasts concerning future events. Technically, this means that on average, the market's estimate of the average value of the event in question is likely to be quite accurate. Consequently, I believe that political "futures" markets are more reliable indicators of the odds of a Bush or Kerry win than surveys conducted by the various media companies. With this in mind, it is interesting to observe what the political futures markets are telling us. As Alex Tabarrok notes, the market prediction of a Bush victory has hit an all-time low; I just checked the tradesports.com website, and today's closing price for the PRESIDENT.GWBUSH2004 futures contract (George W. Bush is re-elected as United States President) is $49.60, which indicates that the election today is quite literally a tossup (note: since the tradesports contracts pay off $100 if a predefined event occurs and $0 otherwise, the reported price is essentially a probability measure). However, it does appear that regardless of which party wins the presidential election, the House and Senate will most likely have Republican majorities. This is evident because today's closing price for the SENATE.GOP.2004 futures contract (Republicans maintain control of the US Senate in 2004 Election) is $76.50, whereas today's closing price for the HOUSE.GOP.2004 futures contract (Republicans maintain control of the House in 2004 Election) is $87.

As of today 8/5/04, The re-elect George W Bush contract is at $55.00

Whew, I was getting worried...

(sarcasm on)that Michael Moore's Farenheit 9/11 might get disqualified from the Oscars next year. I'll be able to rest better tonight knowing that he is still in the running for another Oscar(sarcasm off). My take, DUHH! Yeah Hollywood was really prepared to disqualify this movie. My prediction right now is that they will vote this film at least ten Oscars if not a clean sweep in all the catagories that it gets nominated in.

Musicians for Kerry????

What's so surprising about this. It's the same thing as saying Hollywood for Kerry or journalists for Kerry. All of the aforementioned groups overwhelmingly are liberal Democratic groups. I think conservative musicians should band together and do likewise. There are afterall some conservative musicians out there. We could get Toby Keith, Ted Nugent, Van Halen, insert country music band here(except for Dixie Chicks), Johnny Ramone of punk fame, and others who haven't outed themselves yet.

************8/6/04 UPDATE*******************

Gene Simmons of KISS fame announced on Scarborough Country that he is voting for George W Bush also. This could be a cool conservative concert.

Missouri Says "NO" to Gay Marriage

In a lopsided 71-29% tally, voters of Missouri have made their voices heard loud and clear, no gay marriage. This is unless of course a federal judge steps in and slaps an injuction on the referendum for being unconstitutional. I'm wondering how long it will take for the lawsuit papers to be filed by the ACLU or like organization. I put the over/under on it at 45 days. The Defense of Marriage Act(DOMA) days are numbered I get the feeling. This just reinforces the urgency of re-electing George W Bush. There will probably be at least two retirements next year on the US Supreme Court. There might be up to four vacancies in the next coming four years on the court. I predict justices Stevens,Rhenquist, and O'Conner to be likely choices for retirement.

Bruins Starting Fall Practice Next Week...

Are you ready for some (crappy)football as Hank Williams says. The UCLA football squad begins fall practice August 11th. As I mentioned when I started this blog over two months ago, the Bruins should be hitting rock bottom this year hopefully. They just need to get it out of their system. Here's a preview by collegefootballnews.com.

Kobe Update

It's looking more and more like Kobe will be around to play for the Lakers this year and not in the Colorado penal league. I posted about this ruling from the judge about a week ago and now it looks like the accuser wants to get together with the DA to discuss dropping the case. It's about time. Now Kobe will have to deal with a civil lawsuit. Once the criminal suit is dropped, I'm guessing his lawyers will get together with the accusers lawyers and work out a settlement. You dodged a bullet Kobe. Now just get on with the business of bringing back LA another ring.

More Polls Out Today....

reinforcing the lack of bounce for the Kerry campaign. Rasmussen and Marist are showing the race tied. Again today Bush is trading higher in the futures market too. Something is definately happening now. I can sense it. For people that trade stocks or futures it's the same feeling you get when all your trading indicators are aligning and screaming at you to BUY or to go SHORT if your talking about John Kerry. I'd margin to the hilt right now and bet on Bush.

Monday, August 02, 2004

Bush is Trending Higher in Futures Market

Take a look at this chart from Iowa Electronic Markets. As you can see, Bush saw his low water mark on the first day of the Democratic Convention where he was trading at 49%. At the end of trading today, he was at 54%. I keep harping on it, but this is in my opinion the most accurate indicator of sentiment out there.

Over at Intrade Presidential Futures, Bush is winning all the states that he won back in 2000 except for the state of New Hampshire. He is not winning any Gore states from 2000. Therefore if these numbers stand for the 2004 election, then Bush would win with 274 electoral votes. This is three more electoral votes than 2000 when Bush received just over the magical number and got 271 electoral votes. Thank you reapportionment.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

I Didn't Think It Was Possible....

but John Kerry has proved me wrong. I was just watching Wolf Blitzer on CNN's Morning Edition and their poll numbers taken after Kerry's speech show no bounce at all for Kerry with registered voters and a negative bounce(or thud!) with likely voters,OUCH! As soon as CNN posts the numbers of the poll on their website, I will link to it. Granted this is only one poll, but as I have been saying, the futures market is going to be the best indicator to watch from now until election day. What's going to be funny though is watching all the Kerry talking heads trying to spin the results of this new CNN poll.