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Posts by POWinCA

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  • Groups Fight Republican Budget That Zeroes Out NPR Funding

    02/14/2011 7:48:23 PM PST · 75 of 92
    POWinCA to tobyhill
    I know why the caged NPR CEO sings

    October 21, 2010:

    Shiller: Let’s go on a sidebar. There’s a misperception about federal funding and public radio. There’s the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. They receive $90 million a year and a vast majority goes to member public radio stations. Those stations pull in more than $1 billion collectively a year. It’s significant and important but not even close to the lion’s share of revenues for public radio. NPR gets no allocation from CPB. Zero. We are a private 501(c)3. We’ve had journalists call up and ask what department of the government we report to. That’s laughable. Have you listened to our shows? We do apply for competitive grants from the likes of the Ford Foundation and the Knight Foundation. As a result, some money from CPB does come to us when we win grants. Depending on the year, it represents just one to three percent of our total budget.

    February 12, 2011:

    The elimination of federal funding would be a significant blow to nearly 900 public radio stations that serve the needs of more than 38 million Americans with free over-the-air programming they can't find anywhere else. It would diminish stations' ability to bring high-quality local, national and international news to their communities, as well as local arts, music and cultural programming that other media don't present. Rural and economically distressed communities could lose access to this programming altogether if their stations go dark.

  • Seasonally Adjusted Home Prices FELL in Case-Shiller Report

    07/28/2009 8:51:53 PM PDT · 8 of 12
    POWinCA to dangus

    Seasonal adjustment is usually done using the X-12-ARIMA process. ARIMA stands for Autoregressive Moving Average.

    A time series has four components: cyclical, seasonal, trend, and irregular.

    The idea of seasonal adjustment is to estimate and control for the seasonal and irregular components to get a cleaner look at the trend and cycle.

    House prices are a function of house supply and demand. Obviously, these follow some predictable seasonal trends. For example, most people sell and buy their homes during the summer months so they can get their kids settled in before school starts.

    A properly seasonally adjusted series has already controlled for seasonal variation, so saying, “It’s summer. Of course house prices are rising.” is no longer a valid criticism.

    This assumes, of course, that the present resembles the past. Seasonal variations can change over time. Trends can shift or pivot due to a structural change in the series such as a permanent increase in property taxes or elimination of the mortgage tax credit.

    Moreover, the Case-Shiller and FHFA house price indices are based on a sample of mortgages, not a census. Both, I think, are based only on mortgages which Fannie and Freddie bought for their portfolios. Their standards change over time. In fact, the current FHFA All Transactions House Price Index consists of 92.6% of refinancings which is biased toward higher priced homes. Therefore the Purchase-Only Index is a better measure of current house prices.

    A seasonally adjusted series can only be compared to other values in its own series. You cannot (or should not) compare values of different seasonally adjusted series because each one follows a different seasonal pattern.

    The Case-Shiller, FHFA, and median house prices are all showing price increases. It’s quite possible that there is a counter-bubble going on here. By that I mean that speculative investors and highly leveraged FHA borrowers are buying believing we’ve reached a bottom. If and when the next wave of foreclosures hits the market, we’ll probably see house prices plummet again. We may see a house price slump similar to California in the 1990s where house prices were flat or declining for 8 consecutive years. If that happens, a house will become an AWFUL investment. A house needs to appreciate, on average, 4-5% per year for 30 years for you to just BREAK EVEN on interest, taxes, maintenance, improvements, and opportunity costs. If average appreciation is less than that, you would have been better off renting and investing your excess funds.

  • Transcripts of Prior General Michael J. Walsh testimony vanishes.

    06/24/2009 11:20:06 PM PDT · 5 of 5
    POWinCA to MindBender26

    No, no error.

    The form of address specifically in question for this situation was an acknowledgment.

    When you are acknowledging a superior officer, a soldier will say “Yes, Sir” or “Yes, Ma’am”. If you are addressing another dignitary, “Yes, Sir” and “Yes, Ma’am” are also appropriate. Even when addressing the President in a prolonged conversation, “Yes, Sir” is never inappropriate.

    In the Army, it is not tradition to say, “Yes, General” or “Yes, Colonel.” When acknowledging a junior, one simply says, “Yes.” An officer would never say, “Yes, Sergeant” unless he wanted to curtly remind the soldier of his subordinate rank.

    If General Walsh had simply answered her question with “Yes”, I doubt she would have flown off the handle. She was irritated by the word “Ma’am” with her preconceived notion that it is a form of address for old women.

    He snide attitude and snotty comments also served to put her in control of the situation as Alpha Dog. It’s part of the secret politics of a Congressional committee hearing.

  • Obama's Letter to the Ayatollah

    06/24/2009 9:50:48 PM PDT · 1 of 12
    Recently released text of Obama's personal letter to the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
  • CONTEST: Address Me As "Senator..."

    06/19/2009 12:24:27 PM PDT · 22 of 29
    POWinCA to NetRight Nation

    I tried to find a full transcript of the Q&A to see if Walsh referred to any male senators by “sir”. No transcript seems available on the website.

    Then I searched for any prior testimony General Walsh may have given. I found that Colonel Michael J. Walsh testified before Congress on October 3, 2001 but that particular archived transcript is curiously MISSING. Gee, I wonder why!

  • Transcripts of Prior General Michael J. Walsh testimony vanishes.

    06/19/2009 12:24:26 PM PDT · 1 of 5
  • Simulacrum of a President: 84R4(K 084M4

    06/06/2009 6:54:40 AM PDT · 1 of 18
  • Obama reads Cliff Notes at Buchenwald, lost without teleprompter, needs Rosetta Stone

    06/05/2009 11:08:50 PM PDT · 1 of 13