GLDD had a good quarter dredging mud (here) and the stock actually closed up yesterday (12%), as did a few of our others (NBIX was up 16%*). This, even as the Dow dropped 297 points on the surprise from Greece and the MF Global bankruptcy.

So our little successes may be short-lived. The calamity that could befall global markets if the European situation does not in fact resolve itself in an orderly way is not reflected in the stock market. Then again, the calamity would be so huge that one just assumes a way will be found to avoid it. And yet. And yet.

This is a time to emphasize: The stock market is never a place for money you will need any time in the next few years.

And to ask: What could the Republicans have been thinking when they fought to water down the Dodd-Frank financial regulation, and what could they be thinking now in vowing to repeal it? Did you notice that MF Global was leveraged 40 to one before it went under? Why, after 2008, do we still allow firms to lever themselves up 40 to 1? And why do we still not have transparent derivatives markets, where regulators can see just how many trillions of dollars in sovereign debt ‘insurance’ our financial institutions may have written?

The relentless Republican effort to obstruct or roll back regulation endangers us all – including wealthy Republicans, who you might think would have pressured their representatives to switch sides in this debate.

So . . . ‘Occupy Wall Street?’ Yes, I think so. And see Margin Call if it’s playing near you.


Paul Lerman:Here – from a very conservative Philadelphia Inquirer op-ed writer – is a positive take on Jack Bogle’s support of Occupy Wall Street.’ (Bogle is the small investor’s hero, having invented low-fee mutual fund investing at Vanguard. Like Warren Buffett, he is all about common sense.)


‘Both sides are to blame for the supercommittee debt impasse? No,’ says Michael Tomasky ‘it all comes down to Republicans and taxes. And the Democrats will give in yet again, and roll over on Pentagon cuts too.’

Depressing, but worth reading. And then joining the effort that the 99% of us should engage in to take the government back from the top one percent of the top one percent, whose interests the Republicans unfailingly protect.

I’m not being partisan here, I’m being factual: just look at their votes. They will not allow taxes on the rich to be raised even at this time of extraordinary deficit and debt. Presumably, they are proud of this and feel they are acting in the nation’s best interest. I, and a wide majority of Americans disagree.

* Guru: ‘NBIX may have data on its congestive heart failure product out by the end of the year. Based on published studies, it should work. Abbott (ABT) expects to start Phase III trials in endometriosis by the end of 2011. Data should be available in early 2013 and I have as much conviction as possible in the long-term success. Other programs at NBIX are progressing well. I think the stock rise today reflects the imminent start of the Phase III trial.’


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