North Dakota’s Oil Boom–in pictures

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Drilling supplies in a yard in Williston, from a 2011 aerial photograph. The rectangular objects are stacks of 50-foot steel drill pipes. See this yard on Google Maps. (© Google, Inc.) #

Click here for the pictures

Living Large in Small Houses

A photoessay on small houses and the people who love them.

Alyse Nelson on December 20, 2012 at 8:30 am

A tiny house with a picket fence.

A Jay Shafer tiny home. Flickr: nicolas.boullosa

My husband and I think we’ve found a way to pay off our mortgage early, without taking on an extra job or working nights. We’ve decided to construct a rental unit—a “mother-in-law suite”—within our home. If it pans out as we hope, the rental income will let us pay off our loan 10 years early. And who knows: it could give us a chance to live closer to family as we, or they, get on in years.

Jason and I are not alone; lots of folks across Cascadia and beyond are experimenting with adding a second (or third) dwelling to an existing single-family home. And in perhaps the most interesting development, more and more people are choosing to buck the “bigger is better” trend in North American housing. They’re taking small spaces—back yards, side lots, or freestanding garages—and using them to build tiny houses.

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The sequester, explained.

What’s a sequester, how did we get here, what gets cut and by how much?

Link to the Mother Jones article

Stop wasting food

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We should probably put this up in the kitchen…

Click here for the whole infographic

Good to know; and handy, too

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All those symbols on the fabric care tag, explained. This is going up by the washer.

Click here (or on the image) for the full graphic.

What, me worry?

  • Porter Stansberry writes in the S&A Digest:
    • According to independent analysts (Bloomberg News and State Budget Solutions), the state of California is now $617 billion in debt. This figure includes likely future pension fund contributions. That’s more than twice as much as the next most indebted state, New York ($305 billion).
      California has about 37 million people. About 15% of these folks are under 18 years old. So that leaves about 30 million adults. As a rough measure, we can assume that only about 60% of the adults are working… That leaves about 18 million actual workers. It’s these folks who (in theory) will bear the burden of these debts. That’s $34,000 per worker in the state of California. Do you think the average citizen in California can really afford an extra $34,000 in debt?

Entrepreneurs, Investors and Financial Engineers – Not All are “BusinessPeople”

From blogmaverick.com by Mark Cuban:

The Cause of Bubbles =Investment vs Financial Engineering

Oct 11th 2008 3:12PM

Let me get this straight. In 2008, funds trying to squeeze out another basis point or two thought they were being conservative buying insurance on heavily leveraged portfolios of sub prime loans and other debt. Once those loans started to default, it created a cascading deleveraging event which lead to major financial institutions failing and the “smartest” minds on Wall Street being forced to dump everything to raise cash, which in turn lead to a crisis of confidence and deleveraging that created the worst week in the history of the stock markets. Did I get this right ?

In 1987, funds, trying to squeeze out another basis point or two thought they were being conservative, buying insurance on leveraged stock portfolios. Once the stock prices on those portfolios started to drop, their insurance programs pushed them to dump everything AND sell stock index futures to raise cash, which in turn lead to a crisis of confidence and deleveraging that created the worst single day melt down in the history of the stock markets. Did I get this right ?

Think it wont happen again ? Of course it will. Whatever money the Fed makes available to stimulate the economy will be used, as intended, by entrepreneurs and businesspeople to create and grow businesses.

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