Sunday, November 30, 2008

And God said to Moses….."ONLY TWO!"

Two of each species----one male and one female, or in the case of college football, God has been replaced by an entity called the BCS, who can still choose ONLY TWO. (by Rovin)

FLORIDA, OU, TEXAS, and yes USC, all one loss teams chasing an undefeated ALABAMA for a spot in the national championship game. With one week left to go the BCS and the “pollsting lobbiest” will be in full force. Of all the teams left here, USC has by far the best defense in the country while Oklahoma has by far the best offense. Oklahoma can spot any team in the nation 50 points and they still lose by an average of 12 points. Any other year and a USC win over Notre Dame counts for something. This year, at 6-6, the Irish can't help themselves let alone anyone else. While my bias, (and the stats), say USC deserves to be in this championship mix, I’m afraid they are still on the outside looking in.

For the record, league championship games, (LCG’s) suck. One can make a great argument against LCG’s when at the end of a great season for teams that are ranked in the top four or five in the nation, (or for that matter, an undefeated #1 Alabama that has to play against a top four ranked team, Florida) because some idiot came up with the idea that would make the league MORE MONEY. Because the Big 12 divided themselves into two divisions, (north and south), we now have the dilemma of allowing the BCS, (and coach’s) that will determine who plays in their LCG. Either Texas or Oklahoma are going to be disappointed later today when the BCS polls come out. Then again, if the “winner” defeats a now suspect Missouri, (which lost to Kansas yesterday), how does this game help either team in the rankings?

Confused? Unless you are an avid college football fan, you have every right to be confused. Going into the final week of a great season of college football there are still good arguments for who should be in the national championship game, (NCG). An Alabama win over the Gators could solve the #1 slot and eliminate Florida as a contender. This would still leave us with Oklahoma, Texas, and arguably USC with a legitimate shot at the #2 spot in the NCG.

(for the record, you can scroll down to this post to see how I feel about an over-rated Florida)

Update: BCS choose's OU to play in conference champoinship game----Texas fans not happy.

Here's a little comment I found that produces some "irony":

"Remember a few years ago when Mack Brown lobbied and called in favors to coaches and others to vote down California so Texas could play in the Rose Bowl? It worked and Cal was sent packing to the Holiday Bowl as some voters did not even put them in their top 5 (they were 11-1 with their only loss coming at #1 USC by 6 points). What goes around comes around! Enjoy it Cal!"

Update II: This BCS mess lies at the feet of the Big 12 (Ivan Maisel at ESPN makes a good argument among many)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

College Football Observations:

Out of the top eight teams in the BCS, the most over-rated and un-tested (against other quality teams) is Florida. Why was Florida playing the Citadel the week before Thanksgiving?

Teams Florida has beaten this year:

4-8 Citadel????
4-7 Arkansas who were severely beaten by Bama, Texas
4-7 Tennessee who "upset" Vandy yesterday but lost their previous three games by combined score of 69-22
6-5 Kentucky who have not beaten a top 50 team this year
6-5 Vanderbilt who have won one out of the last six games (Kentucky)
7-4 Miami who were killed by Georgia Tech yesterday (41-23)

(Florida also started their season by having a 6-5 Hawaii fly across two time zones and beat them 56-10 whoo whoo!)

Florida also still has to play an 8-3 Florida St and finish with currently # 1 Alabama. Even if Florida wins both of these last games convincingly, they still have not been what I would call "tested" by a season of quality teams that would rank them any higher than a # 4 in BCS rankings.

If / when Florida beats Bama in the SEC championship game, we could be down to seven "quality" one loss teams who could be considered for the national championship game.

(undefeated Utah, Boise St, and Ball St. deserve "honorable mention" in their respective divisions AND if there was a playoff system, each of these teams would deserve to have a spot.)

My pick for the "BIG GAME" would be (if they win out their seasons) Oklahoma and Texas

"Fantasy Games" I would love to see------ Florida vs USC, and an under-rated Penn St. against any of the top five teams.

Final Observation------The BCS still sucks! Bring on the Playoffs

Oklahoma at Oklahoma State: The Bedlam Series (Saturday night ABC 5pm (pst)
The Bedlam Bell doesn't rank with the Old Oaken Bucket, Floyd of Rosedale or the Commander in Chief's Trophy. But for fans in Oklahoma, it's as big as any of those rivalries.
The series dates back to 1904, when Oklahoma beat the Cowboys 75-0 in a game at Guthrie, Okla. The Sooners produced a combined 240-0 margin in the first eight games before the Cowboys finally scored in 1914.

Saturday's matchup in Stillwater will be the first time both teams are ranked in the top 11 nationally since a 1984 matchup when Oklahoma was No. 2 and Oklahoma State was No. 3. And Saturday night's game likely will determine the Big 12 South's champion as the final game of the regular season.

The Sooners hold a decisive 79-16-7 edge in the series and have won five straight over the Cowboys. But Oklahoma State has played them closely in recent seasons, twice stunning them in big upsets that foiled the Sooners' national championship hopes in 2001 and '02. Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops has a 3-1 edge in previous games in Stillwater, although none of his victories there has been by more than six points. link
I'm guessing beastofeast is going to have all of his fingernails chewed off before this one is over.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The State of the Economy and Bailouts

This is a spirited debate on the economy and bailouts, (and how they should be handled) among anyone who chooses to participate. Also included is the email conversations and a graph that our dear northern friend has supplied.

First up----original opinion and graph: (you can left click on the graph to enlarge)

Names with-held (and others…)

"This bear market is only second to the 1929 crash and seems to be far from over… "

"I thought this interesting (chart on the top right)… a comparison of percentage drops in the market from 3-earlier bear markets along with today’s markets. Showing percentage drop of each from start of each drop out 810 days… It has dropped percentage wise 51.9% so far this time which only beat by the crash of 1929… the other two recovered where the 1929 continued all the way to 89.2%… …and much faster than the previous drops if you exclude the 1929 drop…Interesting times to say the least!"
(from the northern guy)

The "southern guy" responded:

"Don't believe this....First, it's comparing apples and oranges....second, the 29 crash was actually a 3 year went down about 25% in the first two days in 29, but by 32, it was down 90%; as bad off as the Dow is, it's still got a ways to go to hit that number....and for a different, not so pessimistic view, check this out....

Then, the "northern guy" responded:

Rovin and Southern Guy.

Not clear on your thoughts … apples and oranges??? Note in my defense: My opening line should be taken at face value, no more… “I thought this interesting (chart below)…” The 51.9% fall so far was what caught my eye as I think it is not near the bottom by any means… The whole world has its nipple in the ringer yet it appears by the dollars action over the last 6-months we are still considered a safe haven, we live in interesting times …

I read the article you sent and the only issue that stood out to me was the auto deal. I have been waiting to see how congress is going to respond concerning the auto bailout monies asked for, as this may indicate how they would deal with what yet is ahead of us.

From my understanding, not sure if I have gotten the true figures from that which I have read, but if so the US (Detroit) car cost approximately $2,000 dollars extra “EACH” due to contracts the laborers and their unions have secured for them over the years (great wages, great health benefits, great retirement, maybe to great). If this number is true and is not addressed as part of any bailout plan the money in any amount is not going to help, money down the rat hole from my perspective. I would guess/bet they will not deal with this (don’t want to offend the unions as there will be another round of voting in 4-years), time will tell. If not I vote for letting them fail.

From my understanding there are 85,000 auto workers in the south making autos so efficiently that they can ship them to Europe and still make a profit… once the Detroit automakers fail some of these workers who supported and loved their union to the point of self destruction may have to take their training and move south to get a new job with companies that are still competitive… For us this means more cheap houses on the market in the most dangerous city in America, anyone ready to move?

Just my two-cents worth…

The Northern Guy…

(these responses are unedited for spelling and content----I will amend all content on request)


addendum: My post just below this one is my response to the auto industry bailout--Rov

Friday, November 21, 2008

Finally....Some One With Some Common Sense
(by Rovin)

Obama Team Said to Explore `Prepack' Auto Bankruptcy (Update1)

Nov. 21 (Bloomberg) -- President-Elect Barack Obama's transition team is exploring a swift, prepackaged bankruptcy for automakers as a possible solution to the industry's financial crisis, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Obama's team has already contacted at least one bankruptcy- law firm to say that Daniel Tarullo, a professor at Georgetown University's law school who heads Obama's economic policy working group, would call to discuss the workings of a so-called prepack, according to this person.

U.S. lawmakers yesterday postponed until December a vote on whether to give General Motors Corp., Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler LLC a $25 billion bailout as an alternative solution. Automakers such as GM could use court protection to reduce debt and reject unfavorable contracts.

``It creates the environment to deal with GM's problems but limits government financial commitment,'' said bankruptcy lawyer Mark Bane of Ropes & Gray in New York. (link to complete article)

I've been personally calling for bankruptcy and reorganization of the auto industry for months now. Throwing $25 billion at an industry that refuse's to change or even adjust to conditions around them is simply a waste of taxpayer dollars. Who ever has made this suggestion on Obama's team needs to stick to their "guns" on this issue. And some one needs to follow the lobbyist money.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Little Good News-----Anne Murray

I rolled out this morning
Kids had the mornin' news show on
Bryant Gumbel was talkin' 'bout the fighting in Lebanon
Some senator was squawkin' 'bout the bad economy
It's gonna get worse you see, we need a change in policy

There's a local paper rolled up in a rubber band
One more sad story's one more than I can stand
Just once how I'd like to see the headline say
"Not much to print today, can't find nothin' bad to say", because

Nobody robbed a liquor store on the lower part of town
Nobody OD'ed, nobody burned a single buildin' down
Nobody fired a shot in anger, nobody had to die in vain
We sure could use a little good news today

I'll come home this evenin'
I'll bet that the news will be the same
Somebody takes a hostage, somebody steals a plane
How I wanna hear the anchor man talk about a county fair
And how we cleaned up the air, how everybody learned to care
Whoa, tell me

Nobody was assassinated in the whole Third World today
And in the streets of Ireland, all the children had to do was play
And everybody loves everybody in the good old USA
We sure could use a little good news today

Nobody robbed a liquor store on the lower part of town
Nobody OD'ed, nobody burned a single buildin' down

Nobody fired a shot in anger, nobody had to die in vain
We sure could use a little good news today

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Honoring Our Veterans

There is no occupation or profession that should receive the level of recognition, respect or distinction more than those who have served to protect this great nation. A single day of adoration to honor our Veterans fails in its attempt to pay a proper tribute to a body of U.S. souls who have given so much and yet ask for so little in return. I pray this is still a grateful nation that acknowledges the commitment, sacrifice, and respect they so richly deserve.

Friday, November 07, 2008

How Did The Economy Get So Bad?
(by Rovin)

This essay is in response to a Kenneth G. Davenport article called Bush Fatigue

When Bush came into office in 2000, I believe he still clung to the conservative principals of a smaller and more efficient government----less regulation on business's and yes lower taxes that provided investment and spending. 9/11 changed much of the process of Bush's agenda.

(This is where a partial theory sets in, but also facts that transpired to support the "theory")

Somewhere around early 2003, Karl Rove, and some in Bush's leadership had convinced Bush that the best way to defeat the coming tide of the left in the 2004 election cycle was to take much of their agenda/platform off the table by passing key legislative bills favorable to the Democratic Party. The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act, (signed by Bush in Dec of 2003) was among the largest of these programs that barely passed in congress, but also took a major platform/agenda off the democrat's table.

Bush had at this point opened the door to big spending programs and a culture of more government-sponsored dependency, popular enough to get re-elected, but scorned by the true conservative portion of the electorate that literally stayed home in protest in 2006.

Enter the 20+ years of an experiment in socialized housing to millions who could not afford to purchase a new car let alone a new house, and presto---a trillion dollar financial crisis arises that may not get cured for a generation. A once rich and powerful nation has again forsaken the principals of creating wealth through individual achievement and opened the "credit extension" doors that led us to the first depression, the S&L crisis, and again today's fiscal disaster. We're two steps away from a complete socialized government and the dependency that comes with it. If you think the current deficit and national debt is huge now---"you ain't seen nothin' yet."

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Congratulations Mr. Obama

Promise your (middle class) electorate lower taxes, free health care, free college tuition, an end to all wars, peace, hope, and change; throw in a 600 million campaign war chest and 90% of the print and TV media at your feet; presto!, you're the President.

While this campaign will be called a referendum on the failed policies of George Bush, President-elect Obama will have more challenges pre-loaded onto his shoulders than most other Presidents. With the world in economic turmoil and rogue nations still a threat to our national security, Mr. Obama already has a plate full of problems to deal with. He will need the full support, (this nation did not give to George W. Bush), from all who can give it, to get through the next four years.

I wish him and his family God's blessing and guidance as this nation goes forward. He will need it.......we all will.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Now is the time to make a difference. Forget the polls and the pollsters. Get out and VOTE!

Monday, November 03, 2008

(When "I left my heart in San Francisco" takes on a whole new meaning)

(by Rovin)

Born and raised in Sacramento until the late sixties, I had the taste of state politics and the conflicting ideologies two hours away in San Francisco. When some of us would drive into "The City", (what we referred to as SF), to catch a concert at the Filmore or Winterland, we had no idea that we were in another world compared to the cow pastures, almond orchards, and wide open spaces where farmers, cowboys and rednecks still reined as the dominant force up and down the center of California. The only things we shared in SF was the new ballads from the likes of Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, and the Grateful Dead. No one had a clue that San Francisco would become a matrix of ultra left liberal thought consumed in marxism, socialism, and hell bent on destroying the capitalistic system as we know it today.

Fast forward to 2008. We are in the last day before this nation selects a new President, and the most liberal candidate to run for the office not only insults the fine folks in Pennsylvania that they "cling to their guns and religion", now Barack Obama has, (in his own words), said he plans to bankrupt the coal industry. The fact that half this nation's electrical power comes from the production of coal and employs millions of related jobs must not have entered Obama's mind when he made this statement. It's one thing to promote clean-coal technology by advancing the way coal is mined and burned to produce this vital source of energy, but to claim that a government mandate will bankrupt an industry that states like Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Colorado, Wyoming, Kentucky depend on for large portion of their economies, reeks of an economic disaster.

Is there a hidden agenda? Not when Barack Obama seems to visit San Francisco, or his quotes get properly vetted from the "City" where I left my heart. Will this "City" once again be famous for ending the career of another liberal that inadvertently made his intentions clear to the electorate? Out of work coal miners and hard working rednecks want to know. Stay tuned.