Second, so far at least, the market appears to be recovering, there are green shoots starting to appear in important economies around the world, and the VIX is starting to move into a 20 to 30 range possibly as the precursor to finding stability below 20 which would mark the commencement of another investable bull market under the model as now configured.
Third, I reduced my exposure to stocks significantly in 2007, and my current portfolio is weighted more in bonds, cash and alternative assets than to stocks, so a hedge is not really that important to me now anyway. I am more interested in hedging my bond portfolio by buying TBT and PST at better prices. I am also more concerned now that a hedge would detract from my performance than add to by reducing my losses. So, I am less in a capital preservation mode than in a capital enhancement mode. This may change based on some unexpected development.
I also classify as a lie what a more diplomatic person would say is just an exaggeration or a misleading statement. An example of what I would call a lie is the representation by Bush and Cheney that the aluminum tubes seized by the U.S. before the Iraq invasion could be used to enrich uranium, or their reliance on the forged documents about yellow cake from Niger, or their reliance on the alcoholic former taxi driver called Curveball who the brother of one of Ahmed's Chalabi's top aides (Ahmed Chalabi - Wikipedia)
Many members of the press have been cowed by the forces from the right who are quick to label any factual assertion, or even a question with a fact in it, inconsistent with their rigid ideology to be be proof of bias. Nor, does it help that many journalists are not trained in any field that is the subject of their reporting, a factor that leads to a superficiality. So, when I am critical of a politician for not telling the truth, or misleading the public, I am not making a political statement as a member of one of the two Tribes, since I am critical of politicians in general. Instead, I am simply making an observation, in a saddened state, about what passes for intelligent conversation by our leaders on matters impacting us all.
Apparently, a full measure is being willing to waterboard a prisoner of war 183 times. That is not my point however. Cheney made at least 10 serious misstatements of facts during the course of that short speech, some would use the term lies, but not me when I am trying to be diplomatic about someone who has caused a great deal of injury to the U.S. and betrayed virtually every real conservative value. Cheney's reality creation in his most recent speech is documented by the two journalists who started to poke holes in Cheney's false claims that he used to justify the Iraq invasion, at a time when virtually all journalists were eager to act as publicists for the administrations claims. This is a link to their excellent article from those two real journalists about Cheney's speech. McClatchy
None of that will stop Cheney from claiming that torture saved hundreds of thousands of lives by preventing a second wave attack. I view Cheney to be the most untrustworthy American politician currently living, bested only by Bill Clinton when Bill was answering a question about his sex life. But there is a material difference between a politician lying about their sex life and another one misleading an unfortunately gullible public to justify a war. I know that I am in a minority when I make that point here in the SUV Capital of the World, where virtually no one questions the words of the Dark Force as being anything other than the equivalent of the gospel according to Jesus.
It is impossible for me to visualize the GOP except in those three white faces, none of whom have much if anything in common with conservatism.
While there is no doubt 20 or even 25% of the voting population who fervently support those gentlemen, and will vote for the GOP no matter what, they are not popular among the true swing voters in a national election and a few senate races. (Most congressional districts have been gerrymandered to insure the re-election of an incumbent which increases polarization in American politics, and diminishes the influence of moderate and independent voters).
The GOP seems intent on self-immolation by allowing themselves to be so identified with this Axis. The best thing that could happen for the GOP now would be to put Cheney out to pasture, just shut him up, and for a few leaders to at least try to distance themselves from Rush, rather than kneeling down and licking his shoes incessantly. If some slight criticism of Rush sends the True Believers into their normal vitriolic, venomous spiel and apoplexy, as it certainly would do, then the GOP politician who wishes to Man Up may be able to put together a winning coalition in the next election, sending the Beanpole back to teaching, by not being so subservient to GOP's assorted wingnuts and religious zealots.
Reagan barely paid any attention to them.
At least the Democrats learned not to become to closely identified with some of their problematic supporters. I really hope that a some point in my life a real and true conservative party will emerge as an alternative to the Democrats.