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The Bottom Line


Cut to the chase, my brother, speak on it!


The Minyanville take on news, commentary and opinion from around the world:

"History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon."
- Napoleon Bonaparte

The New York Times magazine on Sunday was slavishly obssessed with devoted entirely to real estate. That's right, every single word. The introductory article, "The For-Sale Society," noted that "A house stands while occupants come, hopeful and expectant, and go, transferred, perhaps, divorced or just in search of something better. But people leave their marks. They knock down walls and tile the bath; they plant poplars in the backyard. A house becomes a statement of taste and priority and a daily source of pride or rebuke."

  • Bottom Line: The house is the new car! "You are what you mortgage!" replaces "You are what you drive!" Explains why diminutive neighbor with Napoleon complex just re-financed for a 48,000 square foot addition.

Hey chief, why so "testy?"

In today's Financial Times, Dominique Moisi editorializes gives us a quiz, saying asking: "Is "economic patriotism" – the expression coined by Dominique de Villepin, France's prime minister, and epitomized by the proposed merger of Gaz de France and Suez – a sign of hard-headed pragmatism gaining ground in Europe?1 Or is it an example of French schizophrenia towards globalization, if not the European Union?2 Could French giants be good for Europe, but European giants bad for France?3"

  • Bottom Line:
    Answer Key:
    1). Yes.
    2). Ha, a trick question, nice try monsieur "Questionne Marc."
    3). This is simply a version of the logician's old saw: "Jean-Claude is facetious. He also abstemious. He also has pneumonia. Given those clues, what is the only tree in all of Europe that he will like?" The Euphorbia.

Buffet Pens Dear John Letter

In his "much anticipated" letter to shareholders, Berkshire Hathaway's Warren Buffet notes that the Dow increased from 65.73 to 11,4897.12 in the 20th century, for an average gain of 5.3% per year. "To achieve an equal rate of gain in the 21st century, the Dow will have to rise by December 31, 2099 to - brace yourself - precisely 2,011011.23. But I'm willing to settle for 2,000,000; six years into this century, the Dow has gained not at all."
  • Bottom Line: Buy January 2100 1,000,000 strike call LEAP options (just in case we only get halfway to the target) and a cryogenic storage tank. Drink plenty of fluids.

Dow Jones Industrial Average 2006 - 2100*
1).jpg" width="857" />

*Approximate estimate

Should My Shoes Match My Body Bag?

Pete Kendall writes on his blog, SocioTimes, that the trend in fashion, mirroring social mood, is decidedly negative. Hence, we have the black body bag dress, and the impressively popular "torture hat" accessory.
  • Bottom Line: A body bag or a torture hood is like, not as totally sad and depressing if you can turn it into a pretty dress!

Disney Gives Tourists the Finger

According to (putting aside for a moment the embarrassing fact that I went to a site called in the first place), "When visitors step up to the gates of the four Disney World theme parks, the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, or the MGM Studios, they will encounter something unexpected and largely foreign to them. Disney has embarked on a program to use an established biometric technology – finger geometry – to secure its valuable passes."
  • Bottom Line: Mickey giving us the "California howdy."
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