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Kill This Meme

Digby read this fairy tale in the New York Times about the “plight” of the obscenely wealthy in the GOPression. As always they attached the totally bogus argument that the rich are important because they finance new businesses and expansions.

The old money rich, as a group, don’t spend their money, and they damn sure don’t risk anything on new ventures.

This is the justification for all the tax cuts, to spur investments, but it doesn’t happen because the old money stay rich by minimizing their exposure to risk.

If an entrepreneur strikes it rich, they might enter the world of venture capitalism, like Richard Branson of Virgin and Paul Allen of Microsoft, but the old line families use other people’s money, not their own if they perceive any risk at all. That’s how they get to be old money.

New businesses are started by people mortgaging everything they own and borrowing money from friends and relatives. If they are semi-successful they can then get small business loans for their first expansion. If the success is sustained, or they have been successful in an earlier enterprise, they can then cut a deal with a venture capitalist. If that goes well, they will have an initial public offering and get money from the sale of stock.

The IPO rarely funds any major growth, and is normally done to pay off the venture capitalists.

The stock market and old rich don’t invest in new businesses, they suck the life out of businesses with a proven record of success. The only exception has been the tech bubble, which was a ponzi scheme, and old money wasn’t really affected because they don’t do “new”.

I went to college with old money, and I had them as clients. They are the cheapest people on the planet, and the slowest paying. They never carry a wallet, and don’t pay for anything, because they don’t have to.

October 3, 2009   20 Comments

Typhoon Parma Update 10-3

Typhoon ParmaPosition: 18.9 N 120.1 E [10 PM 0300 UTC].
Movement: West [280°] near 8 mph [13 kph].
Maximum sustained winds: 75 mph [120 kph].
Wind Gusts: 90 mph [150 kph].
Tropical Storm Wind Radius: 110 miles [175 km].
Hurricane Wind Radius: 15 miles [25 km].
Minimum central pressure: 975 mb.

It is 290 miles [465 km] North of Manila, Philippines. The storm is back over the water and the steering currents are muddled. The forecast is for slowing and a turn to the North.

Its slow approach and interaction with the mountains disrupted the storm, so it came ashore as a category one storm. The fact that it had been a category 4 pushed the government to implement wide scale evacuations which should save lives. It is a small storm which limits its destruction, and it hit the island on the northern side of its track guidance, further away from population centers than predicted. There have already been deaths associated with the storm, and there are likely to be more from the rains and mudslides,

Here’s the link for NOAA’s latest satellite images.

[For the latest information click on the storm symbol, or go to the CATEGORIES drop-down box below the CALENDAR and select “Hurricanes” for all of the posts related to storms on this site.]

October 3, 2009   Comments Off on Typhoon Parma Update 10-3