POOR LITTLE SLING BOX . . .

. . . seems to have a competitor. ‘Sony goes prime-time with ‘LocationFree TV.” Watch your home TV from anywhere.

STRAIGHT TEXAS MOM SEEKS YOUR HELP

‘As a married mother of three children,’ says Atticus Circle founder and Texas family-law lawyer Anne Wynne, ‘I decided it was time to take a stand.’ She asks you to join her in supporting marriage equality.

TIPS

Diane: ‘I have 20- and 30-year TIPS [Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities] that have lost a few thousand dollars in value in the last month. I know that long-term maturities are sensitive to interest rates, but why are they dropping so much when inflation still seems a long-term concern?’

☞ Dunno. You could also ask why they rose so much from the days when, first issued, they yielded 4% above inflation. Today, the long-term TIPS have risen so high in price – even after the recent pullback – the yield works out to barely 2% over inflation.

There’s a rule of thumb that long-term risk-free investments should yield about 3% above inflation (which would give our TIPS further to fall). But I would argue that TIPS are so unique, it’s not irrational to pay a premium (i.e., accept a lower than 3% yield-above-inflation). Suggested here years ago when they sold at ‘par’ – 100 cents on the dollar – a lot of us can live with those long-term TIPS now selling at ‘only’ 123 cents on the dollar, even though it was undeniably more fun when they got up to 136.

I don’t see TIPS as a way to get rich, I see them as my bedrock retirement core – in my case, about 20% of my Keogh Plan. If I were you, I’d hang on. (Note to those only now considering TIPS: They can indeed make sense for your retirement plan. But be sure you understand how they work before buying.)

THEY COULD BE CANDIDATES FOR COOKING LIKE A GUY™

These are men’s men. Brush clearing, swash buckling, men. The one tells a Senator to “fuck off” right there on the Senate floor, shoots a friend in the face, and goes duck hunting with a Supreme Court Justice who recently made an obscene gesture in the Cathedral of the Holy Cross (and told a reporter to “fuck off” in Italian). Neither of these guys performed any military service (neither did I), but both are tough as nails. No prissy soufflés for these guys. Heck, if I ever get this thing written (note that I call it this “thing” rather than this “cookbook,” because there is nothing manly about the word “cookbook”), I might even sell one to the President! “Bring it on” – “he can run, but he can’t hide” – a man who came into office just itching to go to war. A man so tough he could make fun of a woman he’s putting to death.

Do you remember that case? Karla Faye Tucker. A number of groups and individuals – including the Pope – pleaded with then Governor Bush to spare her life – to keep her locked up forever, but not kill her, the first woman to be executed in Texas in more than a century.

The cool thing – the manly thing – he didn’t just kill her, he found the humor in it.

As Tucker Carlson reported for the now-defunct Talk magazine:

In the week before [Karla Faye Tucker’s] execution, Bush says, Bianca Jagger and a number of other protesters came to Austin to demand clemency for Tucker. “Did you meet with any of them?” I ask.

Bush whips around and stares at me. “No, I didn’t meet with any of them,” he snaps, as though I’ve just asked the dumbest, most offensive question ever posed. “I didn’t meet with Larry King either when he came down for it. I watched his interview with [Karla Faye], though. He asked her real difficult questions, like ‘What would you say to Governor Bush?’ ”

“What was her answer?” I wonder.

“Please,” Bush whimpers, his lips pursed in mock desperation, “don’t kill me.”

“When I read that,” writes one well-known conservative, “I thought, ‘Please don’t let this man get close to any position of power – ever.'”

I don’t know who else is going to buy Cooking Like a Guy™, but I have my eye on these three for sure.

 

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