A Potpourri of Thoughts

  1. Political Dynasties. The Bushs and Clintons have nothing on the Gandhis. Rahul Gandhi was appointed a general secretary of the Congress party, in charge of youth affairs a couple of months ago. This puts him on a path to prime minister of India, a role previously held by his great grandfather, his grandmother, his uncle and his father.
  2. Watching the Watchdogs. The SEC is concerned that the major credit rating agencies, Moodys and S&P may be too close to those whose debt they are rating. The system is set up poorly and they have a near monopoly. Will we need agencies to watch the agencies set up to watch others. In theory this could be a never ending cluster f–k.
  3. New War Strategy. The northeast section of Kunar province in Afghanistan is violent and deadly with no end in sight. A nontraditional strategy being considered is to hire young men of fighting age to build a road. The hope is that providing employment will make the Taliban’s propaganda less appealing and that the connecting two modest population centers will further stimulate economic growth. New anti-war slogan—make roads not war.
  4. $4.58 Billion. This is the amount of the settlement Merck has agreed to to end all Vioxx claims. Sounds like a lot. I do wonder how much harmed individuals will receive after the lawyers get their share and the administrative costs eat up more. The amazing thing to me was one writer speculated that this “reasonable” settlement could help raise Merck’s share price since the uncertainty of the amount of the claims is gone. $4.58 billion as reasonable–what a concept. My bank account should be so reasonable.
  5. A No-Work Friday Afternoon. Come noon I went to downtown Chicago where Paul and I walked around, shot pool, saw a movie and had a nice dinner. Something about doing this on a work day made it even sweeter.

About 48facets
What you read is what you get.

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