Friday, July 29, 2016

You know it be crazy when.....

Poor people can't even get money from collecting bottles and cans.

About 20% of California recycling centers have closed in the past year. (roughly 200) I'm not even sure that happened during the depths of the recession. Recycling has never been profitable, but materials have been in a very deflationary situation since at least December 2015 as the price of oil dropped so did the price of commodities. For example - The price of plastic has fallen from $400 a ton 18 months ago to about $190 today, according to Mark Oldfield of the state's recycling program, CalRecycle. Source.

California has a very large homeless population, and you have to wonder how this will filter through. Probably with more crime.

"The value of the material has been dropping. As the price of oil drops, the price of plastic drops, so it is less valuable, and the state's redemption value that it gives people to run these stores has dropped,” said Worrell. " Source.

If the price of oil goes down more......

On the flip side..... a lot of old building are being torn down. Which is good. I've never seen it this way though. It's almost less expensive to bulldoze them than fix that crapshack up.

She might be low energy, but she lets me dress her up.

My other girl was quite shitty about the camera.

Holy moly. That is a lot of percent.

ExxonMobil earnings badly miss expectations as profits sink 59%.

Chevron earnings surprise with loss on $2.8 billion in charges.

"Revenues were $29.3 billion, down about 27 percent from $40.4 billion in the second quarter of 2015."

well... isn't that interesting.

On the heels of the my last post about dollar I found it pretty amusing to see articles this morning about how how the dollar has "crashed". To which I rolled my eyes. One penny is NOT a crash! The dollar is down two cents in the last two or three days. In contrast, from Dec to May the dollar was down eight cents. It was down one cent-ish before GDP was even released. The GDP report is only responsible for a ONE CENT move. Technically not even  a full cent. Previous close was 96.66, and right now it's at 95.70. Yeah I can't believe I watch this shit either. And yes I'm cussing a lot more in my posts because things are just so frustrating.

The other thing I found fascinating was how people are reporting the GDP. When I heard the numbers before reading anything - I thought it was better than last quarter. Which is was. Last quarter we only grew at .09%. Or a revised .08%. Take your pick.

So naturally I expected the cacophony of articles telling me that GDP had surged. Which is what has been going on for the past couple of years. If a country was growing at .01 percent, and the next read was .03% - that was the most amazing news previously and worthy of exclamatory headlines about GDP surging. I'm not numb to it now, but it used to really drive me crazy. If you are only growing at .03%, you basically aren't growing.

I think dollar strength continues no matter what the idiots are saying.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The dollar is back to make everyone butthurt.

The election is distracting everyone from the real things going on in the world.  The oil market right now is a wee bit frightening. Record levels of oil - otherwise known as "the glut" didn't matter when the dollar was weakening from January to May. During that time the price of a barrel of oil increased about 40%.

Around the beginning of July the dollar reversed and is now getting quite strong again putting pressure on everything. Oil is bought in petrodollars, and when the dollar goes up - other countries can not buy as much of it. Or if they do it takes more of their resources to do so. A strong dollar also makes it harder for US exports. That means our companies sell less. Rinse lather repeat.

So - the dollar gets strong which makes the price of oil go down. A lot of drillers that were holding onto their fingernails won't make it. I read a couple of days ago that a record 23% of high yield energy bonds were under threat of defaulting. That is a lot of percent.

With the way the world looks - no one can predict how strong the dollar will get because no one can predict how horrible the economies of the rest of the world will get.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Another one for the great vapor wear dust bin.

A couple of years ago I saw an HUD helmet for motorcyclists called Skully. Here. One of the videos has been taken down I guess. I thought this product was really promising. Or else I would have never blogged about it.

Sadly, it looks like the founders basically looted the company. And about 3000 people who pre-ordered will not get their helmets. At a price of 1500 bucks a pop, this is roughly 4 million dollars? Don't pre-order things people! This is the nice spin on the whole thing. Reddit seems to have a few threads that go more into detail on what happened. Bad management, and a Marissa Mayer style of running a company. Throw lavish parties. You get the idea.

To tell you the truth I don't remember a time ever that Silicon Valley put out as much complete shit for products as they have these last 10 years. You used to actually have a product to sell. Not a crowd funded product that doesn't exist at all. Everyday I wonder when crowd funding will die. But I guess people are still losing money lending other people money on Prosper. People just have a deep seated need to gamble I guess.

I am a little bitchy about this right now because I bought a lot of Nest products and I basically live in fear of them now. My smoke alarms try to go off randomly. Which is so frustrating because my family's house burned down and we lost my cousin in the fire. So I'm super twitchy about this whole thing. And just yesterday people were reporting that they couldn't get to the nest thermostat server. The whole country is in a heatwave. And I have a pet again - so keeping the house cool is super important to me. Not to mention they disabled the feature that made me buy them in the first place.

Also yesterday I was reading about the failure of Makerbot. The whole 3D printing sector is in a wipe out. Sometimes Silicon Valley just disappoints me. Crowd funding is definitely not helping. It's only enabling all of this bullshit. There is almost nothing to show for the past 10 years of effort.

Last night I was actually at a talk at a LIDAR company. I wont name them because while it was an open talk, I don't know how public the information is. They said they were going IPO. I've been watching them forever and wondering why they hadn't already. But it was so refreshing for a company that is many years old(not a startup), and actually has a product, go IPO. It's like the old days. Instead of stupid companies selling social media "likes".  That whole sector is like a dumpster fire to me. Sure it can make money... but when the kids turn.....

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

I was having a failure to bond.

The new girl has been in the house for a little more than a week now. She has yet to get a name. Naming convention around the snarkolepsy household is pretty contentious. Mr S. wants to name them after food or old people names. I want to name them after strippers. Our last girl Jasmine took two months to name. You see who won there with the name... right?

I'd been in a fairly consistent funk because the first few years with a rabbit...... it's not the greatest. If they weren't cute and all I might not do it. They are like puppies for like 4 years. They chew everything. They can sometimes be a challenge to potty train. And it can take them a while to start spitting out the kisses. It just sucks having to start over because we'd just gotten our last girl to 5. Which means she was past the terrible twos, threes, and fours. They are nothing but love at that point. But it's a little rough to get there. In the beginning they don't even care if you exist.

When the new girl arrived she didn't act anything like a baby. She was acting a lot more like a veal rabbit. And I was pretty bummed about it because our last girl was a little like a tank in size and personality. The new girl had absolutely no personality.  Which was a new experience. Every time we gave her a chance to run around she wouldn't. She was really low energy. Remember I didn't chose her, I was bequeathed her. This time I went to a particular breeder for the best chance of a healthy rabbit and she gave me one with no choice to see it's personality. For three days she was like that and I was freaked and bummed. We actually brought her home a week earlier than they usually let to go. She was 7 weeks not 8. So we thought maybe that was the reason why.

Velveteens are known for being a really chill breed, but she was being ridiculous. Now after about a week we have been able to stuff some personality into her. You never know how much is them, or you rubbing off on them. In her case - it's all us baby. But she is about as opposite of our last girl as you can get. She is more like our first Velveteen Paisley. She was delicate, but this new girl takes delicate to a whole new level. (I'd link pictures, but That part of my blog is still broken. Maybe I will get to that tomorrow)

Next week after the 100 degree heat clears I'm going to get blood from her. All new bunnies get blood draws now because they can harbor landmine viruses that explode later in life. You don't even know until they get sick. So right now I'm calling her Turnip. But that name of course is not going to stick. You never see a stripper names Turnip.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Up until Bernie said the following, I felt kinda bad for the Bernie Bros. I was in that Bernie crowd in San Jose. I thought they were really nice people. I mean - really nice people. Then Bernie said this and I was like - nope. You people pound sand.

"A government based on the principles of economic, social, racial, and environmental justice - that struggle continues."
There is just something freeing about going to someone elses' house and seeing their family have a knock down brawl. Makes your own family look way less fucked up.

Seriously - you have to admit the Democratic convention is the best show on earth right now. The whole election really. It's just really funny for like the first time....... ever. I'm sure I'm going to be really pissed off later. But for now it makes me laugh.

Maybe the long con pays off this time.

Today I'm feeling pretty happy I voted for Bernie Sanders even though I hate everything he stands for.

When I threw my vote away for him it was because I wanted to piss off the Bernie dudes enough to come over to the Trump side. After all - the more votes he got, the more I felt they would feel disenfranchised. At the time I thought it was a slim chance this would pay off, but now.........I secretly giggle inside.

I didn't think it would pay off at all! But Trump had already won the nomination by the time California got to vote. So I took a chance. You can see I posted about it right after I voted.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Look at me spreading rumors.

The world has been pretty boring lately. So no posts. Thankfully today something interesting popped up.

This morning Mr S. were driving to the city next to us for lunch, and we saw this helicopter over these huge buildings on the edge of town. The rumor in town is that some of these buildings are Tesla warehouses. We thought they were going to be parts distribution centers.

On the way out of town they had some of the road closed off and I couldn't get shots. So when the heli was still there on the way back into town - Mr S. was able to tuck away in a place to park so I could hop out and take pictures. Since the place was still cordoned off I decided to talk to some of the construction dudes who were making sure people didn't get too close. They said they had been out there since 6 in the morning, and by the time I was there is must have been around 1:00. That is a lot of helicopter time.

Anyway, I asked them if it was the Tesla building they were lifting duct work onto. They seemed surprised. They said they heard is was a new bus manufacturing plant. Which doesn't rule out Tesla. I told them, oh - it could still be Tesla then because they just announced they were making a bus. They were like - Tesla...... the car company?

I honestly didn't pay that much attention to the presser. But everyone in town thinks Tesla is moving into some of these buildings. And if those guys think it's going to be a bus manufacturing plant, I'm sticking those two things together.

The bigger news is my town is all of a sudden going to do manufacturing apparently! That is crazy! Our town is just a burb. It's the kind of town that didn't even want a super Walmart. Which oddly is the exact spot these warehouses reside. Walmart spent a ton of money improving that spot. It used to just be a field and Walmart put in streets, and lights and infrastructure, and the townies said pound sand. Now manufacturing is a-okay? The world is really changing which makes me happy. My city is the king of not in my backyard. The Walmart footprint was much smaller than these warehouses. Especially if it is manufacturing.

If what the construction dudes said was true. I'd give it a 90% chance. I don't know if Elon is going to make it, but he is going to die trying.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Boy - that Trump speech last night really got under Obamas skin.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Circling the drain.

I've hated every moment of the Wearables trend. I try to go to as few conferences as possible because I think it's mostly bullshit. Which is why you get photos of a cockroach today. It is a Texas sized cockroach after all. We don't normally get them this big. But apparently San Jose does! I don't even want to park my car in the parking garage now.

Also, this is not my badge so don't go thinking you've figured out my name.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

She's a bandaid.

So I didn't make it all the way to Palmdale. My breeder decided to meet me in Lancaster. Which I was pretty excited about because I was having a hard time trying to figure Palmdale out. Every single time I searched for a burger joint I got pictures of burritos. And not even authentic Mexican. TExmex. What is that about? I don't understand a city that doesn't have at least one amazing burger place that does only burgers. I'd decided on a restaurant in Lancaster, but after I actually got my hands on the baby I completely forgot about getting food there. Which I honestly regret. I don't really like to pop in and out of towns without eating there and looking around. It's fun checking out new cities. And it was too hot to explore. Bunnies don't take near 100 degree heat well, and babies especially have a hard time. Chances are I might get back down that way in Octoberish though.

It turns out my new breeder didn't really want to get rid of this girl like we suspected. I think she relented to finally shut Mr S. up. The only reason she did was because this girl was too big.  Thankfully she was not defective in some way. She wanted her enough that she still wanted to breed her and would love to have her babies. So I guess eventually I might be doing that. Since she really didn't want to give her up it was a relief to her that we were long time bunny owners. Not newbies. We met on the net so she only knew we were slightly annoying. Good breeders care about where their animals end up. Especially ARBA breeders.

When they are these size they are pretty cute, but most people get tired of them through the terrible twos, and threes, and fours. So they wind up in pounds.  I think she was super happy to know that would never happen to this girl. She's already a kisser. ON DAY 1.

Trump has a surprising new demo.

When you drive inland to farmland country you always see all these signs along the freeway telling people to  reject the delta water tunnels. Or in the case of central California they just snarkily ask - is growing food wasting water? 

The farmers in California are not a happy bunch. Our state would rather save a tiny minnow over growing food for people. Then we suffered a four year drought, and the government told the farmers to pound sand. We'd rather let the water run to the sea than give you any to grow crops. They even suspended water right for a while. Which is irritating because it is not known if any of those ridiculous minnows survived the drought. 

So I found it interesting that all along highway 99 to L.A. a lot of farms had giant signs that said: build water storage now - ANOTHER FARMER FOR TRUMP.  Makes it sound like it could be a bunch of them banding together doesn't it? 

I didn't get any pictures because I was driving and I didn't want to pull off on the burm of the freeway. But I found it super interesting.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Well, I have been bequeathed a baby bunny. Note, I didn't get to pick a baby.  All I know is it better not suck.  It's the first time I've ever done that. This woman gave the real impression she didn't want to get rid of any of the babies she had. Which I guess is a good sign? Or some new strange breeder con. She is the sherpa of breeders though. She is the source where a lot of other breeders get their stock.

And it looks like I will be driving to Palmdale solo because Mr S. has some code monkey emergency this weekend. I've never driven to L.A. by myself before.

If I'd been given more notice I'd have tried to see if any of my SoCAl readers wanted to meetup. But she relented only last night, and I'm leaving in the morning.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

This is how desperate we have become.

I think the stagnation is pretty palpable right now because PokemanGo is all of a sudden the saviour of the economy. Apparently.

Take these headlines. It's sad really. In the old days a hit game would be awesome. But it would only be a hit game. Not all of this other crap. It says a lot about the economy really.

How 'Pokemon Go' could help you sell your house.

'Pokemon Go' has the power to transform retail, analyst says.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

At least the government will take care of you.

Said in the most sarcastic way.

I start to get nervous when some of the biggest insider traders in the world start losing money. In this case CALPERS. The California public retirement system. A couple of days ago they announced they lost 2% of the their portfolio value. Remember CALPERS makes all of it's assumptions on funding based on a 7.5% gain in their portfolio. That is almost a 10% miss. No one can estimate they will make 7.5% a year unless they have insider knowledge.

Frankly, I'm shocked it's only 2% because last year while oil was falling like a rock I started reading about the CALPERS portfolio losing 28% on their oil investments. And this article was from August. Oil didn't really bottom until about Christmas.

After the real estate crash it looks like they are almost the worst investors in the world. I shudder to think what will happen when the market eventually crashes. Markets don't go up forever. But hey - bright side - oil has already been caved, so their isn't much more damage that sector  can do to them.