Monday by The Magazine Rack…



Good afternoon and welcome to Monday by the Magazine Rack.

Our beginning of the working week/weekend retrospective thread where we can have a chit chat about anything that takes your fancy..

Vitamin supplements. I take a few every day. In fact I’ve just had one now. Two capsules of fish oil. They really should carry a warning – swallow immediately, because, as I’ve just discovered, if you allow the gelatinous coating to dissolve in your mouth, the taste of fish oil is quite disgusting. Like gagging back the leftover oil from a sardine can but about a hundred times more intense.


As part of my erstwhile responsibility as a ‘patron of the arts’ I am pleased to report that last night I had the privelage to attend the latest adaptation of Kafka’s Metamorphosis.

This was a visually stunning production from Iceland which features the main character (the salesman who morphs into an insect) performing his part while suspended from the ceiling of the stage. The music was by Nick Cave. You can read a review of it here.

Now where did I put that ginko forte…..

Weekly “Economic Crisis” Thread

I thought I’d kick off this week’s “Economic Crisis” thread. I’m sure we’re going to see alot of cut & paste clips on how it is “all over but the singing” and how is “will get much worse before we see the new dawn”… and this is a good thing – I like the opposing viewpoints, especially when I see them both backed up by something other than our own rhetoric 🙂

That said, I was hoping we could perhaps go back a little bit on the timeline and look at the underlying causes. I’m not particularly interested in seeing the “he/she called it first”, but more “How this all came to be” in a legal & technical sense. I think we all agree “something” happened to the economic fabric as we’ve understood it for several decades, but I’m sure not alot of us know exactly what that was. Let’s see if we can enlighten our little corner of the blogosphere with some information, not just the buzz words our politicians and media keep spinning our way.

For my part, I have two sources of information – one slightly humerous and the other slightly… let’s just say the anti-capitalists will like it (-*wink*-). However, I chose both of these because they discuss the underlying reasons the economy tanked the way it did. I was forwarded the first one by a friend and chased down the second because it filled in a blank (what the hell a “credit default swap” is) I had in my overall picture.

Humorous Information:

Slightly Hysterical Information:

In its simplest form, a CDS is just a bet on an outcome. Say Bank A writes a million-dollar mortgage to the Pope for a town house in the West Village. Bank A wants to hedge its mortgage risk in case the Pope can’t make his monthly payments, so it buys CDS protection from Bank B, wherein it agrees to pay Bank B a premium of $1,000 a month for five years. In return, Bank B agrees to pay Bank A the full million-dollar value of the Pope’s mortgage if he defaults. In theory, Bank A is covered if the Pope goes on a meth binge and loses his job.

More at the Rolling Stone.

Voter’s Turn on Malcolm’s Bull

Just when it seems that Malcolm’s approval ratings cannot get any worse, they do.

The latest Herald/Nielsen poll shows Mr Rudd’s approval rating has risen to 74 per cent as Labor forges a crushing lead over the Coalition.

It reveals the electorate has stuck overwhelmingly with Mr Rudd and Labor since the global financial crisis began to bite into jobs and growth.

In an alarming turn for Mr Turnbull, more voters now disapprove of the job he is doing as Opposition Leader than approve.

I really suspect that the voters know that the GFC was not and is not caused by anything that is happening in this country. And that any attempt by the opposition to label this a “Rudd Recession” is clearly seen as cheap politics by the electorate.

Wont someone think of the conservatives?