Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving

We're in El Paso with the fam-o-lee. I'm in charge of the cranberry sauce/chutney/compote/whatever...poring over recipes on Martha Stewart dot com...wanting to do something a little more creative/innovative...

Who'da thunk? Martha Stewart. "It's a good thing..."

Hope your Thanksgiving is full of grace and good food and good times with family & friends.

Cuz that's what it's all about my friends.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Quantitative Easement Tango, with cool flow charts

First, my apologies for unleashing this on you so early on a Sunday morning. There's a great deal of informational drivel in this post. Get coffee first...and start that grin 'a crackin' at the crack of dawn...

My first title to this post was "We're Being Quantitatively Eased and We Don't Even Know It", which seemed wordy and nebulous. You guys know how I like to, tongue in cheek, try to come up with some kind of sensationalist headline tying back to tango. Just for fun. For this one the tie-back is much more difficult - obviously it doesn't make sense.

I tried to think of a relationship between printing more money and tango. $600,000,000,000 aka six hundred billion dollars are being printed up (the first $105 billion this coming week) over the next eight months. I'm not completely clear on the whole thing, but they are saying "We're not printing money", and are emphasizing that they are buying government bonds.

So a guy spends a lot of money on his tango, but nothing happens...?

As in the "All hat and no cattle" concept?

So a guy spends a lot of money on his tango, his ego gets inflated (inflation), and his tango gets weaker (deflation)...?

So a guy spends a lot of money on his tango, learns some half-assed kickass highboleo moves, leading to ego inflation, and destabilization of the milonga...?

So a guy spends a lot of money on his tango, leading to ego inflation, and takes a trip to Buenos Aires aka TangoMecca for further lessons and a world stage to show off his half-assed kickass highboleo moves, which leads to destabilization of an international milonga, and finds that the women aren't impressed by his ego nor his tango, which leads to ego deflation, and tango stagnation...?

So a guy spends a lot of money on his tango, leading to ego inflation, decides to manifest himself into a tango a teacher and teach his HAKAHB to others, (begins to troll the milongas across the globe for a suitable potranca rusa/SYT/teaching partner), leading them to invest more of their hard-earned short-supplied greenbacks into their tango, which in turn leads to further tango deflation and destabilization of the milongas, resulting in dissatisfied women, who stay home to watch "Dances with the Stars", yielding a gender imbalance, stimulating the lamentations of the menfolk to yield even higher investment into tango investment bonds, which of course, the guy benefits from as a direct result...? (Guy and SYT move to Spain or Isla de Pantelleria to open a Tango bar using the windfall tango profits and live happily ever after)

Or, finally, in desperation, confusion and frustration, the guy decides to just give his tango greenbacks to the tango dealers (in "support", without actually attending any classes), and hopes that somehow it will get infused back into his tango, somehow, someday, somewhere...?

Probably not.

Who knows? I don't completely understand it - on the downstream end anyway - in terms of how this will benefit the global economy, or not. Methinks someone, somewhere, somehow, some day soon, will be stuffing their pockets and teabags with at least some of the aforementioned $600 billion.

My gut tells me we are in for a wild ride over the next 30 years aka "the rest of my life". Maybe by then I will be a highly leveraged milonguero wannabe/blacksmith.

Stay tuned for my upcoming articles - "The Qualitative Easement Tango" and "Tango Derivatives Demystified"!

Here is the first (1 in 5) article in a series explaining QE2 - that appears to be pretty good, albeit technical/economicspeak, with a flowchart and all. Cool!

"Common sense tells us money printing is probably not the path to long-term prosperity and low unemployment, but common sense also tells us after a possible QE disappointment pullback, newly printed U.S. dollars will be finding their way into the global stock, commodity, and currency markets. The big questions are (a) how much QE is coming in terms of a dollar amount, and (b) how much of that money will find its way into the financial markets."


And here is the corresponding Quantitative Easement for Tango flow chart:
DINZEL 2001 and 2002
You *know* they always say that Tango is THE most complicated investment a human being can make. This is why monkeys don't dance tango or make investments or try to influence the global economy to the upside.

Here's a tiny blurb I found on the topic on MSNBC: (although I didn't look very hard)

The Associated Press

updated 11/10/2010 3:24:54 PM ET 2010-11-10T20:24:54

WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve says it will buy a total of $105 billion worth of government bonds starting later this week as it launches a new program to invigorate the economy.

The bonds will be purchased through a series of 18 operations that start on Friday and end on Dec. 9. The purchases are the first since the Fed announced last week that it will buy a total of $600 billion worth of Treasury bonds over the next eight months.

The Fed will buy $75 billion of government debt as part of the new program. And, it will buy another $30 billion, using the proceeds from its vast mortgage portfolio.

That totals $105 billion for the first phase of the Fed's government bond buying. The Fed last week said it anticipates buying on average $110 billion a month.

And finally, the genesis for this post, from Dieudonne's comment on my Jon Stewart post...thanks D!

Actually, having written/blogarreah'd this self-amusing piece of BS, I have arrived at that tie-back (there is a word for this) that I was looking for - the true essence of the quantitative easement of global tango - in the vein of too much of a good thing. But I'm out of time. I have to get to work now.

And coffee...I need my coffee.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Get it while it's hot! :: Melina's Two Cents

New bloguera & professional tango teacher Melina Sedo...of Melina & Detlef trying her hand at a blog...

Before she changes her mind, check out her first post...

Friday, November 5, 2010

Strange Tango or Now We Are Strange

Nothing strange, just a sensationalist headline...and my old compadre Jaimes, who I have not seen in ages...I hear he makes it down Houston way now and again...

Music video for the New York Howl, featuring the band performing live at Bowery Poetry Club, and tango dancers Jaimes Friedgen, Shorey Myers, Rebecca Shulman, Adam Hoopengardener, Cidgem Tanik, and Carmela Hill-Burke

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Political Tango :: Jon Stewart's Profound Speech

Here is the full text of Jon Stewart's speech at the end of his "Rally to Restore Sanity (and/or Fear)" last Saturday [October 30th] on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

Full credit for the transcript to Ryan Witt and Liz Brown at and Rolling Stone Magazine.

"I can't control what people think this was. I can only tell you my intentions. This was not a rally to ridicule people of faith. Or people of activism or to look down our noses at the heartland or passionate argument or to suggest that times are not difficult and that we have nothing to fear. They are and we do. But we live now in hard times, not end times. And we can have animus and not be enemies.

Unfortunately, one of our main tools in delineating the two broke. The country's 24-hour politico pundit panic conflict-onator did not cause our problems, but its existence makes solving them that much harder. The press can hold its magnifying glass up to our problems and illuminate problems heretofore unseen, or it can use its magnifying glass to light ants on fire, and then perhaps host a week of shows on the sudden, unexpected dangerous-flaming-ant epidemic. If we amplify everything, we hear nothing.

There are terrorists and racists and Stalinists and theocrats, but those are titles that must be earned. You must have the resume. Not being able to distinguish between real racists and tea partiers, or real bigots and Juan Williams and Rich Sanchez is an insult -- not only to those people, but to the racists themselves, who have put forth the exhausting effort it takes to hate. Just as the inability to distinguish between terrorists and Muslims makes us less safe, not more.

The press is our immune system. If it overreacts to everything we eventually get sicker. And perhaps eczema. Yet, with that being said, I feel good. Strangely, calmly good, because the image of Americans that is reflected back to us by our political and media process is false. It is us through a funhouse mirror, and not the good kind that makes you slim and taller -- but the kind where you have a giant forehead and an ass like a pumpkin and one eyeball.

So, why would we work together? Why would you reach across the aisle to a pumpkin assed forehead eyeball monster? If the picture of us were true, our inability to solve problems would actually be quite sane and reasonable. Why would you work with Marxists actively subverting our Constitution or racists and homophobes who see no one’s humanity but their own? We hear every damn day about how fragile our country is -- on the brink of catastrophe -- torn by polarizing hate and how it’s a shame that we can’t work together to get things done, but the truth is we do. We work together to get things done every damn day. The only place we don't is here or on cable TV. Americans don't live here or on cable TV. Where we live our values and principles form the foundation that sustains us while we get things done, not the barriers that prevent us from getting things done.

Most Americans don't live their lives solely as Democrats or Republicans or conservatives or liberals. Most Americans live their lives that our just a little bit late for something they have to do. Often it’s something they do not want to do, but they do it. Impossible things get done every day that are only made possible by the little, reasonable compromises."

Stewart then plays a clip of cars merging before entering the Lincoln Tunnel in New Jersey

"These cars -- that’s a school teacher who thinks taxes are too high…there’s a mom with two kids who can’t think about anything else...another car, the lady’s in the NRA. She loves Oprah…An investment banker, gay, also likes Oprah…a Latino carpenter…a fundamentalist vacuum salesman…a Mormon Jay Z fan…But this is us. Everyone of the cars that you see is filled with individuals of strong belief and principles they hold dear -- often principles and beliefs in direct opposition to their fellow travelers.

And yet these millions of cars must somehow find a way to squeeze one by one into a mile-long, 30-foot wide tunnel carved underneath a mighty river…And they do it. Concession by concession. You go. Then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go -- oh my god, is that an NRA sticker on your car, an Obama sticker on your car? Well, that’s OK. You go and then I’ll go…"Sure, at some point there will be a selfish jerk who zips up the shoulder and cuts in at the last minute. But that individual is rare and he is scorned, and he is not hired as an analyst.

Because we know instinctively as a people that if we are to get through the darkness and back into the light we have to work together and the truth is, there will always be darkness. And sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t the promised land. Sometimes it’s just New Jersey. But we do it anyway, together.

If you want to know why I’m here and what I want from you I can only assure you this: you have already given it to me. You’re presence was what I wanted. Sanity will always be and has always been in the eye of the beholder. To see you here today and the kind of people that you are has restored mine. Thank you."

Jon Stewart's America is the America I believe in.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

You know, when you dance tango, you should really put a little bit of your life into it...

"What we get is the mood. She doesn't listen to my thoughts, I don't listen to her thoughts, but somehow we communicate the same mood to each other. Marcela and I don't have a personal relationship, we are friends and dancing partners, but our souls communicate, we don't need to talk. So, right now I feel like ...I'm dancing with my ideal, but really, my ideal does not have a face. She's a dream of something I want in real life, but that ideal does not have a face. You know, when you dance tango, you should really put a little bit of your life into it. If you dance your life, you dance better." [Carlos Gavito 1942-2005]