Monthly Archives: September 2014

Portland Commissioner Amanda Fritz’s husband dies in tragic car accident

My prayers are with her and her family. I’m so sorry.

Talking on KXL now about>>Portland Mayor Charlie Hales statement on criminal illegal alien hiding in church

The Mayor supports a criminal illegal alien hiding from the law and who receives Portland taxpayer funds.

Mayor Charlie Hales’ statement is below.

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Mayor Charlie Hales supports the criminal illegal alien who helped start the illegal alien day labor center in NE Portland.

Continue reading Talking on KXL now about>>Portland Mayor Charlie Hales statement on criminal illegal alien hiding in church

Jeff Merkley’s plagiarism and dirty tricks

He’s already accused his opponent, a female neurosurgeon, of conducting a–wait for it–war on women, and now Senator Jeff Merkley’s back with an equally laughable charge of “plagiarism”.

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Jeff Merkley, who “plagiarizes” seemingly every policy idea from a woman who plagiarized her Native American heritage for personal gain (hence the nick name Fauxchahontas), Elizabeth ‘You Didn’t Build That’ Warren, and champions the crash and burn policies of Barack Obama, is now accusing his senate opponent of “plagiarism”.

I can understand why Jeff Merkley probably planted the plagiarism story with Andrew Kaczynski of Buzzfeed about his opponent using other people’s policy ideas. Jeff Merkley gets the compliant media to put his opponent’s name and the word “plagiarism” in the same sentence in every searchable database in the universe. Maybe Merkley hoped his phony plagiarism charge would bully his opponent out of the race like Democrat senate candidate John Walsh--who plagiarized an entire thesis to receive his post graduate degree from the Army War College.

Here’s a thought: maybe Jeff Merkley plagiarized the idea to charge plagiarism against his opponent because he can’t hold his own in the operating theater of ideas. Quick, check to see if that phrase “operating theater of ideas” is plagiarized.

One of Merkley’s idols, Democrat Joe Biden, now gets a pass for plagiarizing a speech–indeed a life story–from a UK politician. But Biden also plagiarized: a LAW REVIEW article, passages of speeches from Robert Kennedy and Hubert Humphrey, lied about participating in protests in the civil rights movement and lied about his law school accomplishments. Jeff Merkley’s idol Joe Biden is a serial plagiarizer whose pants are on fire.

The smart neurosurgeon Dr. Monica Wehby chose policy prescriptions from one of the smartest people in the US Senate, Rob Portman who coaches candidates on policy ideas, of which Wehby is one. She adopted policy ideas from a guy who runs a POLICY IDEA SHOP and is one of the more moderate political operators out there, Karl Rove. In a world where politicians can openly lie about an opponent and it’s considered protected free speech, this isn’t even close to plagiarism, it’s politics. 

If Congress ever stopped borrowing ideas, turns of phrase and whole bills from lobbyists and affinity groups, there would be no legislation. Ever. Indeed, those groups actually write legislation most of the time. Merkley wouldn’t actually know that perhaps because he doesn’t have his name on much, if any, legislation.

But if we were to adopt the Jeff Merkley’s definition of plagiarism imagine the fall out:

  • Jeff Merkley’s doctors would have to come up with unique ways to write the same prescriptions or else be accused of plagiarism
  • Jeff Merkley’s lawyers wouldn’t be able to use plagiarized boilerplate language.
  • Jeff Merkley couldn’t use a ghost writer to plagiarize a book or speech.
  • Jeff Merkley’s campaign couldn’t use plagiarized anti Koch Brothers slogans anymore which means he would have no more campaign.
  • Jeff Merkley wouldn’t be able to sign the letter siccing the IRS on his political opponents (see below) because someone else wrote it.
  • Jeff Merkley could never sign on to any legislation written by someone else–like ObamaCare, Dodd-Frank, through the ceiling spending–because it was plagiarized. Hey, wait…that actually might be a good idea!
  • Jeff Merkley could never do a Facebook posting again because someone else a) does them and, b) they’re always someone else’s plagiarized ideas.

Wehby’s reaction, to remove the policy ideas from her website, was silly. She should have owned them, defended them, and ask Merkley to debate her on the issues. Instead she retreated. 

Merkley’s campaign is a side show and embarrassment. I’m now changing my Merkley moniker from “The Accidental Senator” to “Sideshow Jeff”. He’s earned it.

Merkley Letter to Irs by VictoriaTaft

Pete the Banker: The housing market begins its retreat

Several indicators reflect a housing market set back.

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Uncertainty about the economy, job stability, and inability to finance continue to scare many potential residential buyers away, especially first time buyers.  At the recent Pacific NW Mortgage Bankers Conference, volumes cited by the residential mortgage banker community were running some 25% – 30% below 2013 levels, resulting from lower refinance rates and tepid mortgage volume for home purchases. 

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QE3 has driven two elements, prices have risen and foreclosures declined.  With anticipation of Fed’s exit from the QE3 program this Fall, housing price increases have stalled and now foreclosure activity is picking up. 
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New construction of single family residences also remain depressed, despite the mass media’s headlines that new construction permits and starts have been improving dramatically which they cite as evidence of housing recovery.  One problem with the media’s line of reporting, the recent increases permit and starts reflects increases in multi family units (apartments), rather than single family residences.
And there’s more. Treasury rates will likely soon impact mortgage rates. 
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And the bond market will impact mortgage rates sooner or later. Probably sooner. Take a look at these quotes from CNBC:

“Demand for U.S. Treasurys waned for a fifth consecutive session, ahead of an official auction of 10-year notes on Wednesday and a key Federal Reserve meeting next week.”

 And,

“Ten-year notes fell in price to yield 2.53 percent on Wednesday, ahead of a Treasury auction of $21 billion in the benchmark bonds. Auction performance has weakened sharply recently and the last three auctions have tailed.  

“Bond yields have risen in recent days—pressuring Wall Street—on fears the Federal Reserve could raise interest rates sooner rather than later. This came after fresh research from the San Francisco Fed suggested investors’ expectations for rate hikes lagged those of the central bank.”

And they continued their ascent on Friday,

Benchmark 10-year notes were last down 18/32 in price with the yield at 2.61 percent, slightly below a session high of nearly 2.62 percent, the highest since July 8.

I think it is hard to suggest that this rate increase is a long term phenomena yet, but at some point the Fed is likely to lose its credibility with Treasury bond investors over its easing policy.  Especially given their insistence that unemployment is nearing 6% and inflation only 2% (one can easily challenge both these assertions).  But here is the counter argument.  As pointed out in this article, it is hard to refute the potential for unmitigated disaster in the international scene (given this President) which would promote the flight of investors to the safety of Treasuries, driving up prices while driving down interest rates once again.