Did we just dodge a bazooka?

Today’s action by the Fed gave a much needed shot of confidence to investors, reeling after a steady drop in the market since the 3rdQ 07 high water mark.  Is it sustainable?  Will it work?

I don’t know about y’all, but I’m feeling like we just dodged a bullet.  IBD has the day’s recap, and a look forward…

Tuesday’s powerful market rally underscored the relief felt after the Fed unveiled its new $200 billion Term Securities Lending Facility. The name may sound ungainly, but it will let the central bank make short-term loans to those who need it most — lenders with lots of impaired mortgage-backed securities on their balance sheets, a result of the housing market’s yearlong collapse.

Those impaired securities have made it, at times, impossible for banks to get funds on the open market. Who would make a loan to a bank with an unknown amount of damaged collateral on its books?

That’s why this new lending program can work. It lets troubled mortgage lenders swap some of their shakier debts for AAA-rated U.S. government securities. This fills a lot of holes in bank balance sheets, and puts them back in the business of lending again.

More to come, as Ben Bernanke earns his spurs.

The Tuesday Open Thread

First up, a cool video from the Military Channel, comparing Mark46/Mark 48 machine guns.

(w00t!)

Next is a piece from Christopher Hitchens, describing the argument from the Left — it’s apples and oranges —

Iraq: Worth the Price

Think how many candy-canes and vacations I could have if it were not for the space program, or the cost of carrier-groups or special forces or — I don’t know — Black Hawk helicopters. (If you think I am being unkind or frivolous, see if you can detect the thread of reasoning that connects Iraq expenditures with the crisis in the mortgage system.) There are days when I think that the money raised by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama might have been better spent on the alleviation of poverty, but I can still tell an apple from an orange and am not hopelessly stuck on the zero-sum fixation. Once again, the economic “experts” turn out to know the price of some things but not the value of anything.

Time to start moving dirt…. the Toyota deal is bringing the beginnings of a boom in north Mississippi

Auto parts maker Vuteq USA plans to build a $31 million plant in New Albany to supply molded plastic pieces and other components for Toyota’s assembly plant in Blue Springs.Vuteq, a Japanese company with seven facilities in North America, will hire 130 people to work at the New Albany plant and up to 500 to prepare parts kits at the Toyota plant.

Vuteq’s building will be the first in the Martintown Industrial Park, open land Union County bought with Toyota suppliers in mind.

Primary day in the Magnolia State … Beagle Scout who lives down on the coast in MS 1st district, is calling for voters to cross over and vote for Hillary. I live in the 3rd, and I won’t be crossing over. We’ve got a pretty good selection of hopefuls vying for the Pickering seat. The Club for Growth jumped in and endorsed Charlie Ross, to which I say, “forget Charlie Ross.” I’m pulling for David Landrum. So is Mrs. Nuke. Sure hope he makes the runoff.

U.S. House, 3rd District. For the Democratic nomination, Randall Eads of Starkville will meet Joel Gill of Pickens. On the Republican side, voters will choose between Gregg Harper of Pearl, Charlie Ross of Brandon, David Landrum of Madison County, John Rounsaville of Madison, Bill Marcy of Meridian, Gregory Hatcher of Meridian and the Rev. James Broadwater of Flowood.

So what’s going on in your neck of the woods?

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