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Summer musings. We’re not sliding into a recession. But we are “enjoying” day-to-day rollercoaster rides.

Pay the market no attention. Enjoy the beach, the pool, the tennis court or the mountains.

President Trump will not let us fall into recession. He has tools. His latest idea is cutting payroll taxes. And he can always tie up a “deal “with the Chinese. Just announce a deal and drop some irksome tariffs. He has tools to get re-elected.

I sold my GE after Harry Markopolos released his 175-page whistleblower report:

I didn’t read it all. But I did read GE management’s response. It was miserable. End of story.

You can get the free report here.

I still think Boeing is a great short. I’m mulling.

I’m worried about Netflix. It’s down a lot. It’s being pummeled by the prospect of new streaming competition from the likes of Disney, Apple, YouTube TV, Hulu and Amazon. If I didn’t own a bunch of Netflix already, I’d pick some shares. They’re on sale.

YouTube TV is a dream. As good as DirecTV and one-third the cost.

I updated the stocks I love and own. Click here. They’re in the right hand column.

Ally Bank is best

It has great CD rates and its online system is a joy. Good to have a little cash at present — perhaps two years expenses.

Credit cards versus debit cards

+ Charges on credit cards are easier to dispute.

+ Getting money out of ATM machines overseas may be cheaper with debit cards. Maybe!

+ Credit cards give you airline mileage, and money back on your buys. Debit cards give you nothing.

+ There is no “perfect” credit card. But you get more if you pay more — like $450 or $500 a year.

Please switch to LEDs

+ You’ll save 70% on your electricity bills.

+ You’ll never have to change a bulb again. They’re that reliable.

+ You’ll get the color you like — not the old bright white LED.

+ It costs much less to air condition a house with LED bulbs.

+ Don’t buy a box of them without testing the color first. You may hate it.

Peter Fonda, star of Easy Rider , just died.

My favorite Peter Fonda quote:

“I believe that one is only truly free when learning, and one can only learn when one is free.”

Sad farm story

Now, on a chilly Saturday morning, Bob Krocak, 64, was standing next to the chopper in the parking lot of Fahey Sales Auctioneers and Appraisers, trying to sell what he had always prized. The 128 Holsteins were already gone, sold last year when his family quit the dairy business after three unprofitable years.

Krocak needed the money to stave off bankruptcy and hold on to the land that has been in his family since 1888. Hundreds of other farmers around the country, grappling with rising debt, dismal commodity prices and the fallout of the Trump administration’s trade wars, are facing the same fate. Net farm income has dropped by nearly half in the past five years, from $123 billion to $63 billion.

For the full Washington Post story, click here. 

Was email a mistake? Does it still work?

Depends. The author of a neat piece in the New Yorker argues

“The mathematics of distributed systems suggests that meetings might be better.”

My opinion is simple: All of us receive too many emails. Phone calls and face-to-face meetings now work best.

Please don’t buy Prevagen

It will not fix your brain. It is an unregulated dietary supplement, backed by immense advertising. And no efficacy studies.

Favorite recent New Yorker cartoons 

Favorite silly cartoons

Harry Newton.

Renting is better. Owning is a pain.

I’ve been at our “peaceful” country house for the past two weeks. Issues include:

+ Backup generator got attacked by ants.

+ AC air coolers got attacked by mice.

+ Light bulbs have blown everywhere.

+ Our shower water valve is about to break.

+ Our water has turned brown (from rust).

+ Several door locks no longer latch, or lock.

+ A six foot wide stone step into our house has collapsed, making our entrance treacherous.

+ Paint is peeling. Stucco is cracking.

+ The local contractors are overwhelmed. And ICE has chased their worker-bees away.

But the weather is wonderful. And tennis at 7:30 AM is a dream!