Friday, February 29, 2008

Clinton Spin, Not Tactics, Is What Makes Campaign Pathetic

Many observers think the Clinton campaign has sunk to a new low with this ad:

But it's not the fear-mongering that bothers me. It's the relentless spinning that comes from the campaign that is completely divorced from reality.

From Ben Smith at

Clinton aide Howard Wolfson called the suggestion that her ad today constitutes fearmongering "ludicrous," and quoted Obama's words back at him to defend the spot.

"It is an absolute insult to the voters to suggest that a discussion of national security in this campaign constitutes fearmongering," he said.

He also noted that Obama had said "it's a legitimate question," as well as one of "the kind of [ads] that play upon people's fears."

"The Obama campaign should either decide: Is it fearmongering or is it a legitimate question," he said.

To answer Mr. Wolfson's question, asking who will have better judgment in a crisis is a legitimate. Showing children sleeping in the middle of the night when asking that question is fear-mongering.

And the increasingly ridiculous Mark Penn states that the ad is "a positive ad. Very soft images."

This never-ending bullshit makes me giddy of the prospect of the whole lot of them walk off the stage.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Cramer Wrong, ChiSox Daily Right on WDC

Back in mid-January, I wrote that Western Digital (WDC) was a bargain at 25.27 and stated that there was no way that this stock was staying below $30/share. Then the very next day, a caller on Mad Money asks Jim Cramer if it was a good time to buy the stock and I started to get excited. Cramer would give a plug and I would see a nice bounce in the stock. But he said "don't buy!" and called hard drives a commodity and stated that WDC has no control of the market.

I'll leave it to the tech experts to decide if the hard drive industry is a commodity business. But a company earning $4/share, expanding market their share, and trading at $25 is a buy regardless of what type of industry they operate in.

Yesterday, WDC hit a 52 week high of $34.80, a 37.7% gain from when I called it a bargain on 1/15. Today, after two downgrades, it was down to $32.26, 28% higher than the price on 1/15. I can't fault the analysts too much from dropping the stock to neutral from buy (although they certainly are wrong), as this quick of a price increase invites profit taking.

But WDC just revised 4th quarter earnings upward and I still this stock moving higher throughout the year and $40/share isn't out of the question.

As for Cramer, I'm a big fan of the show. But you need to remember that while he may have an opinion on every stock, he only has superficial knowledge of most of them. If you own a stock, there is a good chance you will have a better idea of where it's going than Cramer does.

Not A Good Sign for the Clinton Campaign

Yesterday, Clinton's chief strategist, Mark Penn, gave an interview basically stating that he wasn't responsible for the campaign's implosion. Today, Harold Ickes, one of Clinton's top advisers, gave a scorching interview in response. Among the many juicy quotes he states, "Besides Hillary Clinton, he is the single most responsible person for this campaign."

First, the fact that these guys are already trying to frame the blame tells you all you need to know about Hillary's chances of winning the Democratic nomination. Second, what kind of operation has top advisers battling each other in the media days before what will most likely be the deciding primaries of the campaign?

If this is a sign of how her presidency would function, we can all be glad Hillary's candidacy will be over on Tuesday.