Welcome back everyone!

I hope you all had a nice holiday weekend. PSW provided the Kindle crowd with some great beach reading with and updateofournow$104,340 Portfolio, a3-part series called “Hedging Your Way To Healthy Dividends” and our very timely “How To Vacation-Proof Your Portfolio” with an on-line lesson from Option Sage’s Market Tamers. All this sudden interest in North Korea’s nuclear test didn’t catch us unaware as Tyler reported on this Sunday night!. Hey, the markets never sleep and neither do we!

36 hours later, the North Korea nuclear test is still the top story and global markets are down and the dollar is bouncing as a flight to safetyBUT IT’S NOT NEWS… Come on people – this has been going on for more than 15 years with these guys, are we really going to freak out every single time we hear that North Korea has nuclear capabilities?REALLY??? Hey, I can write tomorrow’s fear headlines today: Iran doesn’t like us, the Middle East may erupt in violence, the Taliban are still a threat. Oops, looks like I got scooped on that last one by Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who decided that this weekend would be a good time to inform us that”the momentum in Afghanistan is with the Taliban, who are inflicting heavy U.S. casualties and hold de facto control of swaths of the country.

At the suggestion of some of his staff, Mr. Gates has begun referring to himself as the “secretary of war,” saying that shows he and his department have no higher priority than the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. “If people begin to absorb the fact that we’ve got several dozen very dangerous terrorists in our jails right now…maybe a little greater perspective would be brought to the issue,” he said. Do not make the mistake of assuming anything Gates says is not carefully planned and coordinated – he was previously the director of the CIA, just like Poppa Bush (who he served under)!

We have been playing for the dollar bounce over the weekend so this is just great for our oil shorts as well as our overall market posture, as we were looking for another catalyst to push us to a lower level test andlast week’s Cheney/Obama virtual debate was just a warm-up for this weekend’s fright-fest, which sure has caused damage in Asia as well as early European trading but probably won’t be enough to keep US equities…
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