Slope of Hope Blog Posts

Slope initially began as a blog, so this is where most of the website’s content resides. Here we have tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. Click on any category icon below to see posts tagged with that particular subject, or click on a word in the category cloud on the right side of the screen for more specific choices.

Motivations

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Greetings from Chicago. I'm giving a speech here on Saturday morning, and I appreciate everyone understanding that my posts were relatively content-free today. So before I head out for a (very late) dinner, I thought I'd try to make it up to you with a final Friday post.

One of the books I'm required to read for my Chartered Market Technician final exam is Beyond Greed and Fear. I read an item (page 130) which caught my eye:

Having a financial adviser enables the investor to carry a psychological call option. If an investment decision turns out well, the investor can take the credit, attributing the favorable outcome to his or her own skill. If the decision turns out badly, the investor can protect his or her ego and lower the regret by blaming the adviser. This phenomenon involves self-attribution bias. The investor attributes favorable outcomes to skill, and unfavorable outcomes to either somebody else, or just plain bad luck.

Sound familiar? This paragraph struck me like a thunderbolt. Now I finally see why some people read a blog like this! It's all spelled out right there. If they make money, it's them; and if they lose money, it's because of what they read by me (or a commenter). Win/Win!

It touches on a theme I've been thinking about some lately – namely, why do people come to Slope? What's their motivation? Here's my take on it:

Myself – that is, your host and narrator

  • Creative Outlet – I enjoy writing, and this gives me a place to do it;
  • Collective Mind – since I trade a lot, I like to be able to put my ideas and thoughts out there and benefit from an around-the-clock "advisory board" that gives me feedback
  • Community – it's sort of like the old saying about God – if He didn't exist, we'd have to invent Him. I have the same feeling about the community here – – not that it's God-like (well, sometimes), but that I don't know where else I'd find one like it.

Active Slopers – people who, God bless them, have no lives but here

  • Idea Exchange – the sharing of trading ideas;
  • Knowledge – the distribution of interesting articles, links, or other helpful facts;
  • Therapy – to share trading stories, particularly when defeated, to try to learn from them and get feedback;
  • Fun – from haiku to Friday bar sessions, to have a good time.

Lurking Slopers – those who read but never comment

  • Ideas – getting ideas, but not sharing any of their own;
  • Knowledge – learning from the postings of active Slopers
  • Remark: I'm not desperate for comments to be a lot more active, because it's already way into the quadruple-digits every day, but I welcome you lurkers to come out of the woodwork. A community is a give-and-take environment; come participate!

Hucksters – folks that add little or no valuable content, but promote their own site

  • Promotion – plain and simple, they want to use this site's popularity for free advertising. I tolerate this now and then, but only now and then. I've worked too hard to build Slope to have it used by parasites.

As for the motivation of detractors, it's probably a mix – – some are dealing with the aforementioned attribution bias, and others are just trying to knock others down to their own level. Don't feed the trolls.

I won't do another post until late Saturday night. Until then, have a good weekend!

Measured Move for DIG?

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I am long DIG, but I'm skeptical until it can move away heartily from its neckline. The anemic volume, which has been downtrending for an entire year, is troublesome. 

All the same, if it does continue to move upward, the measured move appears to reach a target of approximately $51, which just so happens to be a gap formed last October 3rd. That would be just poetic, if it were to push all the way to that gap.

As I said, I'm long this position, but I'm withholding judgment until we can get higher.

1009-dig

Crumb

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Just to, errr, take us away a bit from the shock over the Peace Prize………..

I was at a bookstore last night and saw a new book (well, it's from earlier this year, but relatively new) by R. Crumb – – the topic, of all things, was the first book of the Bible.

He has created a nearly 250 page book about the story of Genesis. It took him five years, and that's no surprise, because there must be about 1,500 separate panels in there, if not more, each of them beautifully crafted.

Of all people, Crumb is about the last person I'd expect to do a project like this. Oh, and if you haven't seen the early 1990s film about him (which won the documentary Oscar, I think, although not the Peace Prize), you should really check it out.

1009-crumb

Stranger than Fiction

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Huh???

I was trying to think of something to write about first thing this morning. I was maybe going to say something about the cool lunar impact probe from NASA…………or maybe mention the new graphic novel from R. Crumb about the book of Genesis.

But when I was on YouTube, trying to find a good video of the lunar impact, I saw out of the corner of my eye a link to a video about Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize. And I thought to myself, "aww, crap, this lunar video must be a fake, because it must be from some clown who just makes up funny videos like The Onion."

But…….errr……….it's no joke. President Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Now, look, this isn't a political blog, and I happen to think Obama is an amazing individual. I have no ax to grind. But……..seriously?!?!? I mean, the man's the President of the United States. Trying to keep the world stable is sort of his job. And he's been in it, what, about eight months? What extraordinary thing has he done for world peace? Why not give him the Pulitzer Prize too, since he gives really good speeches?

I seriously don't get this. It kind of dilutes the value of the prize for everything else (Arafat notwithstanding).

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