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POLITICAL NASDAQ

This is a fascinating thesis: That the Nasdaq market movers are radical liberals whose George Soros-like hatred for Bush is influencing the movement of Nasdaq stocks. I don’t know if this is the case, but you simply must read it. Starting next week, Ms. D'Anconia will be submitting a weekly report, exclusive to To The Point, indicating the direction she perceives Nasdaq to be moving. -- Jack Wheeler. I make measurements which indicate the direction the market is moving in the Nasdaq. The data I use are very sensitive indicators of the underlying financial mood of the Nasdaq movers and shakers. I do not try to predict or explain their mood. I just have a way of separating the noise from the signal. In general, the larger indices (DJIA, SPX etc.) follow the same motions as the Nasdaq, but they do so more sluggishly. Nasdaq is the canary in the stock market mine, in that it is more sensitive and shows motion effects more clearly than the larger indices. The stock market is one of the most quintessential symbols of American Capitalism. Thus it was with some surprise that since last fall, I found that inflections upward seemed to happen when bad things happened to America. Over the past several months there has appeared to be a correlation between political events and the direction of the Nasdaq. It is possible that these are all just coincidences. Anecdotal evidence is hard to use scientifically. Nevertheless, there appears to be a pattern.

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THE POGO PRESS

The most oft-quoted line of Walt Kelly’s comic strip Pogo of the 50s and 60s is “We have met the enemy and he is us.” Given that the liberal media has so clearly become cheerleaders for America’s defeat in Iraq, it is only appropriate that To The Point refer from now on to them as the Pogo Press. Perhaps such a label will help the Bush White House to realize that the Pogo Press has become so suffused with Bush-hatred that it has become America’s Number One Enemy in the War on Terrorism. That is, the Pogos understand that America cannot be defeated militarily in Iraq, just as we couldn’t in Vietnam, and can only be defeated politically, which we were in Vietnam. Thus they are determined to engineer a Vietnam-like political defeat in Iraq no matter how catastrophic the loss of Iraqi lives in a resultant civil war or the future of freedom for the entire Middle East or America’s capacity to defend itself against Al Qaeda terrorism - that’s all worth it in order to ensure George Bush’s defeat in November.

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WHY CAN’T SHE TAKE IT LIKE A MAN?

We know conclusively that the Abu Ghraib abuse scandal is as phony as a Bill Clinton sex denial because there are no calls for the resignation of the one individual most responsible for the abuses. That would be the officer in charge of Abu Ghraib and all US military prisons in Iraq, the commander of the 800th Military Police Brigade, Army Brigadier General Janis Karpinski. And why have there been no calls for her resignation? Let’s be honest. It is because she is a woman. Thus the frightening lesson of the abuse scandal: Political correctness trumps national security even in wartime.

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NEW SPYWARE REMOVER

It’s rare that I change security programs. I’ve suggested you pay $40 for Ad-aware; I consider it a useful inexpensive program that protects your computer from intruders.

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THE GOOD NEWS ABOUT IRAQ

This is a letter to his friends from Ray Reynolds, a medic in the Iowa Army National Guard, serving in Iraq. To The Point has determined its authenticity and updated its factual claims, verifying them with USAID and the Pentagon: As I head off to Baghdad for the final weeks of my stay in Iraq, I wanted to say thanks to all of you who did not believe the media. They have done a very poor job of covering everything that has happened. I am sorry that I have not been able to visit all of you during my two week leave back home. And just so you can rest at night knowing something is happening in Iraq that is noteworthy, I thought I would pass this on to you. This is the list of things that has happened in Iraq recently:

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ABU GHRAIB AND TFM

The most personally frustrating aspect of the Abu Ghraib folies is that over a year ago I submitted an interrogation method to the Pentagon that was foolproof, immediate, effective, and humane. It’s called TFM Interrogation, utilizing a nutritionally-engineered diet of Tryptophan-Free Meals. A TTP article discussing the method is now posted in the Classics section.

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CHINA’S THREE NO’S

Chinese are fond of compressing a social, political, or economic issue into a set of bullet points designated by the number of them. One of the most famous was “The Three Rounds,” encapsulating Chinese material dreams as they began emerging from the horror of Mao Tse Tung. You were wealthy in post-Mao China if you possessed a watch, a bicycle, and a sewing machine -- the three “rounds.” That was a quarter-century ago. Comparing the dream of having The Three Rounds to China’s economy today gives you an idea of how amazingly far China has traveled in that period. China has been speeding along a highway of wealth creation that has few parallels in history - yet now it looks like it is going to drive right off a cliff.What is transforming the Chinese economy from a dream to a nightmare are The Three No’s: No Water, No Wives, and No Banks.

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WINKING — NOT BLINKING — IN FALLUJA

Has the United States blinked in Fallujah? The Arab media, and ours, have portrayed the withdrawal of the Marines from a portion of the city and their replacement with the "Fallujah Protective Army" as a victory for the insurgents. But it isn't a good idea to get SITREPS (situation reports) from a news media that (a) knows next to nothing about military affairs, and (b) has a political interest in reporting bad news from Iraq. What's been reported as a blink is really more of a wink. There has, in fact, been no Marine withdrawal.

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ARE WE ALL LIBERALS NOW?

Playwright and socialism-advocate George Bernard Shaw famously declared a century ago that “We’re all socialists now” - meaning that socialist ideas had so permeated English society they were advocated however disguised even by their opponents. The current hysteria over the “abuse” of Iraqi prisoners is evidence that American society has become so infected with envy-appeasing liberalism that “We’re all liberals now.”

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THE ILLITERATE LEADER OF BRAZIL

President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva - known as “Lula” - is functionally illiterate. He won’t read anything, any studies, reports, books et al. His aides have learned to give him only one-page bulleted summaries of any issue, then explain it to him verbally. He has no education and knows nothing of economics or business. Yet he has a photographic memory for events and what is said to him. He is incredibly articulate and persuasive in speech. Thus he is the perfect populist demagogue to rouse the poor Brazilian masses.

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