23 November 2017

Thanksgiving Day 2017

“Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the greatest of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours.”

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

"We pray for the big things, and forget to give thanks for the ordinary, small, and yet really not so small, blessings.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

"Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I will say, rejoice; let your gentleness and consideration be known to all, for the Lord is always near.   Do not be anxious about anything, but with prayer, and by supplication, and with thanksgiving, let your needs be made known unto God.   And the peace of the Lord, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds, in Christ Jesus."

Philippians 4:4-7

"Our Lord's love shines forth as much in the simplest of souls as it does in the most highly gifted, as long as there is no refusal offered to his grace."

Thérèse Martin de Lisieux

I will see you on Monday, unless something significant happens before then.

May the peace of the Lord, which surpasses all understanding, be yours always,  especially at this time of thankfulness, the counting of blessings, His tender mercies, and the celebration of life.

22 November 2017

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - Thankfulness

"At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person.

Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have relighted the flame within us."

Albert Schweitzer

"Gratitude is the most exquisite form of courtesy."

Jacques Maritain

The Fed minutes noted that inflation remains persistently subdued.

No surprise there, since top down stimulus to my knowledge has never worked, and is certainly not doing anything now except distorting the economy with asset bubbles and straining the social fabric.

So let's pass a massive tax cut that favors, to a remarkable degree, the already wealthy.

Peak hubris.

Today was a very productive day, despite the cold and wind interspersed with fluffy clouds and sun.  It was almost a type of what life is like, with the good mixed with the not so good.

I have loaves of honey whole wheat bread baking in the oven.  I have not made this in forever, so let's see how it turns out.  It is a special request for my son, who is my joy and my consolation.   Right after Dolly of course.

I picked up a bottle of the nouveau beaujolais and intend to have it tonight. I know it is no longer 'cool' with wine drinkers.   But for many years the queen and I would spend Thanksgiving week in London, and we always would enjoy some of it, lured into the stores by the chalk board signs on the sidewalks.

Wow, the honey wheat bread is really making the whole house smell festive. And I am making the turkey broth to be used with the stuffing and roasting pan tomorrow in my handy Instantpot.

And then there is eggnog chilling for tonight, with a touch of good brandy in it. Yum-o.

To all my US readers and guests, please have a very happy and fruitful Thanksgiving Day.

And for the rest of the world, please do try to carry on without the guidance of our elites.  And for  that, you may be sincerely thankful.

May the peace of the Lord, which surpasses all understanding, be yours always, and especially at these times of thankfulness, the counting of blessings and tender mercies, and the celebration of life.

Have a pleasant evening.

21 November 2017

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - Confronting the Unspeakable

“We are slow to master the great truth that even now Christ is, as it were, walking among us, and by His hand, or eye, or voice, bidding us to follow Him.   We do not understand that His call is a thing that takes place now.   We think it took place in the Apostles' days, but we do not believe in it; we do not look for it in our own case."

John Henry Newman

And indeed, based on the above, we might further wonder if that fallen one, which is the very absence and antithesis of goodness, is also walking the earth among us, and summoning the similarly proud and willful with his intoxicating illusion of power to his embrace as well.   Oh no, this surely could not be.

Stocks rallied today in light trading as I suggested that they might yesterday.

Our elites' hypocrisy knows no bounds.

Bloomberg notes that the House's Tax Reform is 'littered with loopholes for the wealthiest.'

Gold and silver took back a little of the losses from yesterday's resurgent dollar.

Tomorrow is likely to be a slightly buoyant day unless *something happens* overnight, and stocks will most likely strike a level early, and then move sideways for the rest of the day as the adults leave for their holiday.

There will be a light half day of trading on Friday.

I was reading a very interesting article today about Heinrich Himmler's order of 24 Nov 1944, to stop the horrific killing machine he and his minions had constructed at the camps.   Himmler thought that if he stopped his genocide, and offered to ship some of the camp inmates to Switzerland, that the Allies would agree to treat himself and his followers as honorable prisoners of war, rather than as the despicable war criminals that they were.

When it became apparent that he would not be easily excused for his years of foul and unspeakable crimes, he settled the matter by biting down on a capsule of cyanide, thus escaping the hangman's news.

His delusion of an easy amnesty based on a last minute, very cynical and transparent change of heart, seems ridiculous, doesn't it?

As Czesław Miłosz wisely noted about such absurdly convenient misconceptions about life,  many are lulled by 'the huge solace of thinking that for our betrayals, greed, cowardice, and murders that we are not ever going to be judged.'

Have a pleasant evening.

20 November 2017

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - What's Cooking, Doc? - Lawyers, Guns, and Money

This will be a holiday shortened week in the US markets for the national holiday of Thanksgiving on November 23.

Trading will be light this week, especially after noon tomorrow. Plenty of room for the usual trading hijinks and shenanigans.

Gold and silver were smacked down this morning in light trade, the dollar rallied, and the VIX dropped.

In days gone by they used to expect a 'Thanksgiving rally' in stocks. We may or may not see that again, although in this thin trade I would not be going short the market in anticipation of anything, except perhaps into the close on Wednesday or into the early close on Friday at 1 PM. Or perhaps not at all.

I am having some fun this week with the 'InstantPot' which I purchased a little while ago. It is a versatile cooker, but I primarily use it as a pressure cooker, at which it is far superior to the old stove-top types with the wobbling metal weight.

On today's menu was a simple split pea soup, with some very nice hamhocks I had purchased on my trip to the Amish market last week, mixed in with a large onion, celery, and some carrots, with a little seasoning and herbs.

If you let the InstantPot release its pressure quickly, rather than slowly and naturally, it tends to expand the peas quite effectively making for a fairly creamy soup, but with the carrots and celery intact. 35 minutes cooking time and you're good to go.

I cook sixteen bean soup similarly but cut the cooking time way down because I like them to retain their shape.  I often add a diced 'waxed turnip' as they call them here.

I do not use it as a rice cooker, although you can.  We have a very nice Zojirushi which the queen and I purchased many years ago. Their price has declined quite a bit since we had purchased it when it was the latest thing with its 'fuzzy logic.'   They do an excellent job.

We're having the souop with the bread I have been baking. I have not done that for some years, but it is coming back quickly. I am making crusty bread to use for the Thanksgiving day stuffing. Adding a cup of hot water to a hot rimmed cooking sheet at about 450 degrees makes for a very nice crust.

I would not take this week too seriously 'unless something happens.' The trading will be heavy on the pros, pushing things around, until the volume simply dies off and the juniors are left to mind it into the holiday.

But if you are trading these markets this week, be sure to bring your own lawyers, guns and money.

Have a pleasant evening.