Trumps Kicks the Can

Signs a Lame “Relief” Bill

President Trump last night did the unexpected:  he signed the new CV-19/budget and relief bill which – while doing little for CV-19 – manages to be a goldmine for foreign aid and special interests along with keeping government open through September.

This is the $600 check version.  The House is due to take up the $2-grand version today.  But don’t hold your breath – it’s mostly show and little to go:  Republicans in the Senate are likely to stonewall anything more.

Trump plans to whine in a signing statement, but BS & bluster aside, we see this as another taxpayer screw job..

In effect, Trump is kicking the can down the road so Joe Biden and Kamala Harris can do what they will.  What could go wrong?

Predictably, there was only a modest market reaction.  Remember, the clock is running out  this week on locking in stock profits for Tax Year 2020.  Anything with a transaction date after Thursday will be taxed at whatever the capital gains rates turn out for Tax Year 2021.  That’s a gamble many (*sane) people might want to avoid.

Right now, 2021 tax rates are anyone’s guess.  Although an increase seems  like a “given” since the only way to keep the dollar credible is to increase taxes.  Since the Biden administration is likely – in our view – to be much more friendly to China, that means any bump up in revenue from import taxes will be short-lived.

Although we heard a lot of promises, promises during the campaign and were reassured that “Joe Biden has a Plan” – the contents – post hoax – are MIA.  Probably because there is no plan…but hey!  Maybe I’m just cynical ‘cuz it’s Monday?

High Costs of Covid

While the U.S. tries to make budgetary sense of CV-19, and the 5,000 page accounting novel, the rest of the world is stuck with bug bills, too.  Out west, “Covid-19’s $3 Trillion Price Tag Rocks Japan’s Economy.

Although the U.S. market was set to open higher (+150 at 2 AM) there was reason to be suspicious.  Japan was up 3/4th’s of one percent overnight and the price of gold was up as much as $30 an ounce.  Toss in Bitcoin rolling up to $26,870 and one can almost make out a planet-wide global inflation scheme.

Which we’ve mentioned how many times?  We all paper together or die.

The Home Edition of global economic scams is simple-enough to comprehend:  It’s like having a Monopoly game next to a laser printer and reams of colored paper on hand.  The “houses on Boardwalk” can – under these conditions – achieve lunar (if not Martian) orbits.


Nashville Bombing Follow-Up

There are simply too many unanswered questions to know – with any certainty – what the motivations were behind the weekend bomb blast in Nashville.  As of this morning, “DNA found at the scene of the Christmas day explosion in Nashville matches 63-year-old ‘person of interest’.”  Why?

The Deniers and Conspirators have been tossing out non-stop theories since the explosion.  But, absent a smoking gun from some reasonable direction, it’s likely a one-off.

Subject to copycats and with another holiday-shortened week ahead.


No freedom of the press worries in China:  Citizen journalist in China who reported on COVID-19 sentenced to 4 years.

Speaking of the ‘Rona: AstraZeneca-Oxford COVID vaccine could get U.K. approval as soon as this week.

The Gig’s Up:  Gig Economy Workers Say They Can No Longer Survive.  All part of the ‘rona implosion.  Like oil prices – which take fully 60-months to percolate throughout the economy – coronavirus has likely just gotten started.

And we’re rebranding “The Windy City” as the “Bloody City”:  Chicago violence: 7 killed, 27 shot on Christmas weekend.  And that gets us to…

Monetizing MS-13

We have been continuously amazed for 50-odd years (when George started chasing news for a living) at the ability of the American Economy to monetize-away all of society’s problems.

Take water and air pollution:  Filters on cigarettes became more efficient, and more recently the whole “global warming” monetization keeps coming back – Zombie-like – even after data questions the hysterical marketing (and while we’re at it, let’s tax the whole world, too) hype.  Climate has been changing forever.  And warming since the Ice Age.  Und zo?  Hint:  Monetizations need bogeymen!

This morning, we add another monetization to our “Believe It Or Not” list:  I received an email warning me:

MS-13 (the largest and most dangerous gang in all America) is growing faster than ever – especially in small towns across the U.S.

And while that’s unsettling…

What’s truly disturbing is realizing what they’re doing to American seniors.

To join their gang, new members are told to target older men and women and do the most disgusting things imaginable to them…

Imagine if they targeted your wife or daughter!”

More fear-fanning followed.  Then a pitch for (near as I could figure it) a “self defense” system.  And, of course, guess what wasn’t free.

Worth mentioning, though.  As a long-time sales and marketing type (there’s life after news, right?) I admired the chutzpah of the approach.

I’m reminded of Ure’s Second Law.  This first, of course, was “Everything’s a Business Model.”  The Second law (corollary) says “Every Business Model Spawns Additional Monetizations.”

Take CV-19, for example.  No point stopping at vaccines and home improvements, delivery services, and higher speed internet…

Why, even Hells Angels has a CV-19 mask trademark.  “Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation?”  (Does this mean a restored panhead could be properly claimed as a business expense?  I mean it’d be a marketing deduction offset by revenue, right?)…

For now, MS-13 (and MS13 without the dash) didn’t seem to have a U.S. Trademark.  We anticipate that void will be filled in short order.

Our takeaway?  America doesn’t solve problems, anymore.  We just monetize, monetize, monetize them away!

The Week Ahead

Hype like mad?  May be hard to come by.  Same market schedules basically as last week.

There’s a Fed balance sheet this afternoon.

Double-dose of cynicism tomorrow as fresh housing numbers reveal how much higher Home Prices have gone with unlimited “Monopoly money” from the gov’t.

Wednesday verges on a serious workday with international trade, retail inventories, and the PMI manufacturing signal.  Farm prices and business uncertainty in the afternoon.

Thursday – early market closing.  No point coming back from lunch.  About the only thing to weigh should be the weekly jobless claims and that’s early.  We figure those will be up – (so we have a 50-50 chance of being right!).

Starting 2021 Properly

Dinner Thursday night promises to be good.  A replay of the Christmas prime prime rib roast.  Only this time, I have the proper herbe provence on hand to sprinkle on along with crushed sea salt.  Johnny’s Dock seasoning salt was dandy, though.

Elaine and I will suffer through picking the right champagne.  Then the fun begins…

A Special Ham Radio Weekend

New Years is when Tube Type Radio gear is dusted off. Very close to the depths of winter – when low band propagation goes international about sunset (unlike static-plagued summer evenings).

As readers know, I am terribly fond of those tube radios I’ve restored.  When you read the reviews (linked below), you will understand why…

My favorite vintage station (for the lower end of 20 and around 3.550 CW Thursday night) will feature a legendary Drake 2B with matching Q-multiplier.  The transmitter will be a Gonset GSB-100.  The linear amplifier is the Johnson Thunderbolt (my restoration notes (1) and (2) here) and a Hallicrafters T.O. Keyer will be in line.

I may use the Icom 761 for nostalgia reasons:  I was the “voice talent” on the IC-761 rollout video.  Also wrote the script and hired the video crew to shoot it.  Oh, and it’s still a very competitive radio sans the DSP and other “come-lately” changes.

About SKN

Straight Key Night.  

As the American Radio Relay League website says (over here):

“This 24-hour event is not a contest; rather it is a day dedicated to celebrating our CW heritage. Participants are encouraged to get on the air and simply make enjoyable, conversational CW QSOs. The use of straight keys or bugs to send CW is preferred. There are no points scored and all who participate are winners.”

The operation here will begin about 6 PM Central – because that’s 00:00 UTC.  And for however long I last.

Ure’s been a ham since ’63 and I can still mush-along at 30-WPM plus with a bug or keyer.  Straight Key Century Club #19433.

One More Odd Radio Note

As if nostalgia night on a straight key isn’t obscura enough?  Try to figure out what this is:

This, dear reader, I’ve christened an “Antenna Flag.”  All of 5-minutes work on TinkerCAD 4-second download, 30-seconds to slice, and 93 minutes to print. Badda-bing!

Backstory:  My eyes are OK for driving, but when I’m out on the tractor I will oftentimes run into low-hanging Beverage antennas. Mind wanders, in-attentive.  ADHD and machinery and all that…  Antennas get lost in the visual clutter of same-color trees…

The slot in the small piece is where 300-ohm twinlead antenna wire goes.  Result?  The big bright-colored circle hangs down so you can’t miss the wire. At least in theory.  Disclosure: Borrowed idea from those bright orange balls on power lines around airports (mainly for the low & slow helo’s).

Silly problem to solve?  Not really:  We live at the best time ever for problem-solvers. Target rich world. Any time you see a problem, it’s easy to imagine a solution and then realize it.  (Well, except for government which is a “special case” – just ask ’em!)

Which is why – brain on fire with ideas – it’s so easy to leap out of bed every morning.

Remarkably?  Even on Mondays…and even at 1:45 AM…

Write when you get rich, I’m going back to bed.

49 thoughts on “Trumps Kicks the Can”

  1. your capital tax rates for 2021 are baked in. there is no way a any tax package will be passed that affects next year. heck even when republicans controlled all three branches in 2017 it took them most of the year to get a tax bill passed and that affected 2018 on.

  2. “Trump plans to whine in a signing statement, but BS & bluster aside, we see this as another taxpayer screw job..”

    Phew.. now that is scary…..
    Of course they will try and milk it all out of the lower classes like they always do.. but seriously give this some thought.. the economic aid should have gone to the USA and the USA alone Our national budget should be going to.. instead they gave it all away.. and through a crumb to the citizens..
    Our community couldn’t open the pool this last year because there wasn’t enough tax revenue coming in to pay for it to be open..
    Due to the cut in wages there is a significantly large number of People that are behind on everything..
    big story in the local news that colleges are being hit because kids can’t afford the tuition to continue on.. and there is a significant loss of jobs..
    I totally get why trump did it.. I give up give them what they want.. both sides passed it without any real argument.. the end results are not going to be pretty.
    since the vast majority of our national budget and stimulus packages are to be given away to someone else….I have a great fear that the fall we are going to have is going to be more drastic than any of us here have even considered.
    here is a good book…

  3. G – be needing insight with 2 ponders this fine Winter morn..

    1) Who gets to Forty Thou first ? The DOW ore Bitcoin ?

    2) What Law – What Speed Limit – What law enforcement exists in a country that run by slavers (deepstate/cia-fbi) 4 profit ? Hahahahahahaha
    There IS NONE – Welcome – ANARCHY .
    Here in the COMMUNIST run state of Pennsyltucky, we have some of most evil , corrupt Incubi and Sucubi to ever be appointed public office. These low life scum are giving wretched witmer/admin and gruesome newsome/admin a run for the phony script/money.

    – Since the fateful day in Dallas when “they” ritualized blasting John F Kennedys brains all over dealey plaza in URE bullet from a lone gunman = Okay Boomers.

    Recall the message – The Purge , not just a movie, but our shared future .

    – cause “were” Not Gonna Take It – anymore.

  4. $600! yippee! I am going to… er, ugh, um buy some food so when I get evicted I won’t starve right away.

    • $600 will pay my bills for a month. It will probably cost much of that per person for the fedgov to actually distribute it.

      I have no doubt that increasing federal taxes after the first of the year will not be legal if applied to the 2021 tax year, but I have even less doubt that they’ll do it if they feel like it. Ex Post Facto laws are supposed to be illegal.

    • “$600! yippee! I am going to… er, ugh, um”

      Well Patrick…my thought is when Zimbabweism hits. Maybe we could still get a cheese burger…or a cup of coffee.

  5. In the comment section of media articles regarding the Covid Relief Bill, no one seems to care about all the foreign aid money which reduced checks to $600. Money that SHOULD have been on their checks but instead goes partially to a boarder wall in Syria and other strange places. All they care about is getting some money … very sad I didn’t see one Poker Player in all the comments. Just haters who act like little brats.

    • Many of us realize this, yet it’s so obvious to us that we don’t mention it. There’s not much that an individual can do against this kind of overreach except to just live close to the ground.

      • My thoughts, exactly. No debts. No frills. Vigilance to see whether any of the monthly bills for services (phones, TV, lawn, trash, subscriptions and streaming services, software licenses, etc.) can be eliminated or reduced. Selling the second car. Plenty of exercise, maintaining a healthy diet, keeping teeth in good repair. Maintaining my hydroponic garden. Spending lots of time studying the history of high to hyperinflations trying to figure out where my retirement money might be safest–so far, no conclusions there, but I operate on the theory that if something can’t go on forever, it won’t.

  6. Hey George, Don’t laugh the Hell’s Angels is a registered trade mark and you would be blown away by what they are making legally selling their “Support 81” gear, go on line and check it out it’s trip

  7. George

    ” All of 5-minutes work on TinkerCAD.”

    ThinkerCAD doesn’t do real circles like AutoCad?

    I see in your photo that your circular part is a many side approximation of a true circle. Your choice or a limitation of your equipment?

    Happy New Year in advance!
    Rocket Mike a former AutoCad user.

    • TinkerCAD and AutoCAD serve two different needs.

      Yes TinkerCAD doesn’t make real circles, and why? It’s a mesh modeler. The surfaces are all built from triangle faces. It can only approximate a circle.

      Does it need to? That’s the question. The right tool for the job. Yes George could spend 50 bucks a month renting AutoCAD LT (cheap, basic featured version of AutoCAD). And his circles will be manufacturable down to 0.00001″ plus or minus. Does the flag need all that investment, and perfection? The printer can’t hold tolerances less than 0.01″, probably double that because George prints with filament instead of the more expensive and precise laser/UV style.

      It’s like saying “You made it to the market in that golf cart? You know, you could have taken an 18 wheeler?” AutoCAD is best at drawing things like golf courses, houses, buildings, ships, etc. A bit too much tool for the antenna flag.

      • “regarding the Covid Relief Bill, no one seems to care about all the foreign aid money which reduced checks to $600. Money that SHOULD have been on their checks but instead goes partially to a boarder wall in Syria and other strange places. ”

        Well Bob… I think that’s the affects of creative economic engineering. Along with a lot of slight of hand. You have noticed that talking about the money that should be bailing out the USA economy being sent to everywhere else but here. Has been eliminated by MSM…
        What will the next round be.. is the big question..

    • Yeah yeah – never mind a few used tennis ballz (free) – like hangs from garage ceiling for perfect parking place of the Mrs’s. Ru.

      Why in the world would a retired engineer type spend time and money on something – when a simple, cheap effective solution already exists? hahahahaha

      its trick ?

  8. Re: the antenna flag. Have you had any of the items made with this material out in the Sun for prolonged periods? I was wondering how much it fades and/or degrades, if any, over time.

    • If it lasts a year, I’m money ahead and will print another color next year.

      Price 300 feet of Wireman 300 ohm steel core twinlead lately? My latest batch was $210.70 with $78 of that being shipping.

  9. They stole the election fair & square, the Supremes even gave it their wave off of approval.

    It’s over and we’re getting the $600 dollars (think of the $600 as a tee shirt that says “Grandma & Grandpa visited and all I got was this tee shirt”).
    If we want more we should hire a better lobby or guards for the ballot counting.

  10. When you have a new hammer, everything looks like a nail. George’s ‘new hammer’ is a 3D printer. I have a guy wire in a hazardous place in the backyard. Wire flags are a strip of bright cloth tied to the wire. Fast, easier than CAD, and no 3D printer needed. Eschew complexity.

    • But, said George ribbingly – “How many tube rigs you got on the air if complexity is bad?”

      {Seriously, a logic analyzer would short out around Elaine, a function-generator is…well…ME! – voice driven, though…}

      • But…but…but… my solid state SDR rig is Half the weight of your power transformer alone! Lower parts count, too, with those massive ICs!

    • Maybe you could use on-sale Christmas ornaments as antenna markers. Then you can claim it is an AMC channel creepy horror decorating motif, rather than cheap wire markers. A little covered bridge over a ditch would complete the Hollywood cable TV effect.

      Not to throw cold water on all this ham seasonal revelry, but being highly experienced in mowing under trees with low lying limbs, (including pecan, black locust, and bois d’arc), the idea of trying to mow in an area laced with low-hanging steel core strangle wire has less than a holiday appeal.
      Hanging the hanging wires higher, and perhaps over fence lines sounds like an improvement.

      • Ah, but people like me (and maybe Hank) will sometimes kill (on a ham radio contest weekend) for even a barely worrisome 2-3 db of improvement over “normal” conditions. *(Hank, having more soldering iron-time may have a 3-6 db threshold, but you get the idea…)
        It’s all about decibels not landscaping! Jeez…..where’s the geek in you, man?

      • Maybe you need to find and/or refurbish a manlift that’ll get you up to the 20′ level for hanging cables. Personally, I got too much skeletal damage already to risk getting clothes-lined off the back of a tractor or falling off a 20′ ladder. In my case, the 3-pt drag mower would finish the deal anyway. And don’t try to use Ure front end loader as an improvised lift.
        The Christmas ornament dig was satire. Take a step back G_____. I do my own tractor and antenna work as much as possible. Running tractors and installing elevated antennas ain’t workbench geekery; it’s a walk on dangerous side.

    • They won’t alter it.. he signed it and it’s a done deal.
      The hourly wage earner will take it in the shorts once again..
      In reality the economy was in a perilous situation.. 40 plus million on the eviction lists. Not counting those that have been using plastic to cover the loss of income..
      What would be the icing on the cake is the crop disaster from hell..
      If a great famine hits..ww3..covid it could be scary..

    • He did.

      However, wanna make a wager on whether or not nattering Nancy suffers a bout of “selective vision loss…?”

  11. I was admitted to Hospital here in New Zealand last night. It might interest your readers to know, not one person, patients or staff were wearing a mask. The wards
    for the elderly are of course provided more safety. Apart from the initial lockdown in April (4 weeks), of which was a wise precaution back then, everything here is normal and the economy is thriving. Of course this could change if more pressure is bought to bear by the usual suspects.
    The doctors and nurses i spoke to well well aware of the true nature of the “Plandemic”, and very few will be interested in being test subjects for big pharma.

    • Well Simon…I had some friends that while in the AF and spending so much time on the Ice.. They almost lived in New Zealand.. loved it there..Since those days I have always wanted to go there.. the description of the country side is that it is gods country for sure.. and their description of the people basically said the people were second to none country old town ethics.. none of that big city Me crap.. food was hot and delicious.. One of my favorite old man fantasies is to visit and see what I am missing… god bless..
      the old coot on the prairy..

    • Thanks for the catch on this CW – sent on to G2 and he may share with his cmd…great to know.
      G2 is living a “dual life” presently: By day, he’s the task force section chief with his health/fire incident command and by night, he’s on aid calls and when the tones go, the fierce smoke eater.
      Boy’s gotta get more balance in his life…but as he points out “Dad I have more balance – more BANK balance.

      Yep, the Ure family track of “right career, impeckerble timing” has paid off, again…

  12. anyway no time to spoil the greatest party ever . george and his historic economics and now salty moriarty says bottoms in for gold and silver and stocks and such a good car yard man kicking the sheet out of usd$ and america. so once again you can firmly insert all your hypocrisy and georgea dagolio economics in your rear mouths . have a ball

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