Saturday, September 20, 2008
A Cat's Eye View
Baxter here. I have to tell you, I have had a Very Bad Week. On Wednesday evening I used my Box a lot but didn't Do Much, if you know what I mean, and my Female Human dragged me off to the Emergency Clinic at 9 o'clock at Night.
Usually it is That Dog that gets dragged to the Emergency Clinic because of fear of something called Bloat (which always turns out to be Simple Indigestion and is curable with a dose of Pepcid, after my Humans spend hundreds of Dollars). But this time, it was My Turn. About Time they spent some Real Money on Me. After all, I'm Worth It.
I was Taken into the Back and poked and prodded and returned to my Human with a bottle of Disgusting Medicine. The Vet claimed it is Chicken Flavored. Bah! My Humans forced open my Mouth the next Morning and squirted it in and it was the Most Foul Tasting Stuff I've ever had the Misfortune to Taste. Ugh. It made me Foam at the Mouth.
Then yesterday my Male Human dragged me off to the Regular Vet to have what he called an "Ulstrasound." I have No Idea what happened because I fell Asleep very Suddenly after they took me into the Room to do it. When I woke up my Stomach was Naked. Yes, Someone shaved my Stomach while I was Asleep! The Nerve! It is really Embarrassing to have a Naked Stomach when you're a Fine Figure of a Cat.
Apparently Nothing Bad showed up in the Ultrasound and they are just continuing to give me the Disgusting Medicine. In fact, my Female Human is walking around the House calling to me with that Squirt-Thing in her Hand, trying to give Me another Dose of it. Little does she know I have now Sneaked Upstairs and am Blogging. If I hear her coming I may have to stop and run under the Bed for awhile, but I'll be Back.
So, I'm finally getting back to Normal and am ready to talk about this past Week.
In fact, it was a Very Bad Week for Everyone, wasn't it? The Stock Market was like a Roller-Coaster! First it tumbled something like 900 points, then it was up again by the end of the week because the Feds bailed out everybody! So in the End, it didn't really Change. However, the Author of the article Linked Above says:
"Nobody understands who owes what to whom — or whether they have the ability to pay. Counterparties have become afraid to trade with each other. Sovereign wealth funds are no longer willing to supply badly needed capital because they no longer know what they are investing in. The crisis continues because nobody knows what anything is worth. You simply cannot have a functioning market under such circumstances."
Then there's this whole thing about Short Selling. Everybody is Upset about it and suddenly it is being Controlled - which is probably like the old Saying, "Closing the Barn Door after the Horse is Gone."
In fact, the New York Attorney General, Andrew Cuomo, is launching an Investigation to see if anybody was Manipulating the Markets to fall just to make Short Selling more profitable. But no one would really do That, would They? Hmmmmm....
As near as I can tell, one of the more Egregious Practices on Wall Street is something called Naked Short Selling. Sounds kind of Racy, but it really means selling something at a Lower Price that you don't even Own; in fact, you haven't even borrowed it. According to the Financial Times,
"Short sellers aim to profit from share declines, usually by borrowing a stock, selling it and buying it back after its price has decreased. In abusive 'naked' short selling, the seller does not borrow the stock and fails to deliver it to the buyer."
So for instance, our Neighbor, Ethel, has a lot of Cats. She has a lot of Cat Food out on her Porch for her Cats. It's as if I, Baxter, said to you, "Tell you what. I'll sell you Ethel's Cats' Food for this price." But I don't even have that Food. It's on Ethel's porch.
That's about as far as I can understand this Complex type of Transaction. It sounds kind of Fishy to Me. I know I'm just a Cat, and not a Financial Wizard. But it seems to me that this kind of Wizardry may have gotten us into this Predicament. I hope my Humans will still be able to buy my Cat Food. That is all I care about. So Far so Good in that Department.
However, I don't think this Mess is Over Yet. The underlying Problems are Still There.
"'What we can say is that volatility is extremely high by historical standards,' said Ken Tower, senior vice president at Quantitative Analysis Services.
'What we need to see is volatility to come down, as it reflects market uncertainty,' he said. 'Let's see more about the government's plan and what the market makes of it on Monday.'
'We've now weathered this recent storm,' Tower said. "If somebody wants to talk to me about a two or three months rally, then OK. But it's not the end of this overall downturn, with the economy still going down the drain.'"
On the Bright Side, the Economy's problems seem to be a Big Help to the Obama Human in his Fight against the McCain Human. The latest CBS Poll taken in mid-week shows he has regained the Lead from the McCain Human, 48% to 43%. And also, fascination with the Palin Human may be Waning, which can only be a Plus.
And in Other Good News, the Hillary Clinton Human is really Stepping up to the Plate, showing that those who doubted her Commitment to the Democrats were probably Wrong. She has begun an effort named "Hillary Sent Me" and is urging her Supporters to go to Other States and campaign for Obama, and donate to the Cause.
So that about Sums up This Week. Let's hope the Obama Human can keep this Lead and that the Economy continues to be the Leading Issue, as it seems to help! (But not such an Issue that my Humans' 401ks tank Completely. Or they can never Retire. )
In the meantime, I will leave you with This, from YesWeCanHas.com: