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Life is a Paradox

The epic paradox, the statement by Pinocchio, "My nose will Grow now", has always captured my attention.

By always, I mean ever since this morning when I tried to find an illustration for the"paradox" theme of today's blog. I was actually considering using a mathemetical paradox that illustrates how 5 = 4, but I thought that would require far too much thinking for everyone involved.

That one really blows my mind and calls into question the very validity of certain mathematical operational theories.

Frankly, I couldn't care less about Pinocchio, for all I know, he doesn't even exist.

Why we spend so much time of that which doesn't exist is beyond me.

But that is the essence of a paradox. It's existence is outside of the universe of reality, yet somehow exists within that reality.

Spending so much time in the unreal reality can be very profitable, though. Just look at the trade in non-existent securities.

Welcome to the world of the short seller.

In many societies selling what you don't own is a crime. There may even be a Commandment against that sort of thing.

While not a paradox, per se, philosphers and theologians have long asked why it seems that the wicked prosper while in this life.

Take the example of those selling sliver short. They own no silver, sell what they don't own and are dancing all the way to the back.

ParadoxTaking that to one further step of lunacy are the holders of the levearged short silver ETF. Now, admittedly, I've been one of those for about a week and am not complaining about being part of the paradox. Those shares are up 70% in 5 trading days.

Not only selling what you don't own, the people selling the security may not even own the silver and then, just for kicks, let's double the ante.

Instead of 2 times zero, the result is 2 times whatever.

Looking for Inspiration

Most mornings I'm up at 6:30 or so.

That gives me plenty of time to have coffee, read the New York Times and check on the pre-opening bell news.

For some inexplicable reason, I slept in this morning. But not only did I sleep in, I missed the opening bell for the first time in a couple of years.

As I'm hurriedly trying to make up for the time that can never be recovered, I'm not getting much inspiration. I haven't, though, checked the Obituaries yet.

tortureSo far, the predominant coverage in the Times is the role and value of torture. I prefer, "harsh interrogation" methods.

Although I've been searching, I haven't been able to find any derivitive trades off of torture. Those must all be privately held companies.

Torture, I suppose, comes in many forms.

The picture to the left is entitled "Chinese Torture". That kind of torture may also come in the form of their IPO offerings. I believe that the ingenue pictured was a RenRen friend.

That's why I'm so proud that I have no friends in my Facebook account.

But I have had my share of tortuous trades in the past.

Some of them were in companies that had the dubious distinction of being the largest percentage loser for its year.

I once owned L.F. Rothschild, a scion of investment banking.

Look that one up. It's too painful to relive.

A Day Here, A Day There

I won't quibble over a day here or there.

International dateline, questionable reporting, time differences, you can take your pick.

I was born on at 3:30 AM on April 7th in Hungary, but in a logical world, now that I live in the U.S., I should be celebrating my birthday on April 6th.

I don't. That would be stupid, albeit, logical.

Yesteday, May 1st, we learned of Osama bin Laden's death. One of my kids joined the OBLthrong at the White House, the other donned his National Guard uniform and sent me a photo.

I already have the days' newspaper wrapped in plastic.

Was the glorious day on May 1st, was it April 30th? Who knows and who cares?

But it may by no means be coincidence that Adolph Hitler's date of death was reportedly April 30th and officially reported May 1st.

Sure, as a child I remember all of those wierd Lincoln and Kennedy similarities.

This is different.

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