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Old 11-28-2009, 07:37 AM   #1
Duken4evr
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Great test, nice pics. But you have to ask yourself one quesiton: How many V twin American built cruisers can the market absorb? Call me a pessimist, but things aren't looking too good for the old Yankee Dollar at the moment, and it is only going to get worse.
The weak dollar is going to play more hell on the Japanese. The yen hit new highs against the dollar just this past week. This acts to make Japanese products more expensive. At this rate, the top end Japanese bagger/cruisers may wind up costing more than a Harley, unless they sell them at a loss.

Ironically, the market is looking skittish again thanks to Dubai defaulting on it's loans. I suppose it rightfully causes concern when an oil kingdom goes broke. That actually plays to the dollar. When fear reigns, everybody runs to the safe haven dollar, even over gold. Unfortunately I do think it is going to get "worse". When the market tanks, the dollar strengthens, and vice versa.

Problem is, when the market tanks, people tend to lose their jobs, as many of us know all too well. As vast as the stimulus spending is, the root of the problem is a financial industry that lent money to anyone with a pulse, leveraged at 30:1. Harley's current struggles are due more to bad loans through their financial arm than the sharp drop in their current model sales. I don't think even the Fed can print enough money to paper over the hole created by the financial industry. In my mind there is no doubt. Double dipper, here we come. The current market rally was a nice gift. I say thank you, and then excuse myself with more money than I had in March. Personally, I have sold stocks bought in the spring heavily and taken profits. I am in financial bunker mode right now.

Funny time for Victory to release a new model. I read Suzuki is not even importing new bikes into the US for 2010 due to a backlog of unsold '09 models. As for this bike, I suppose there are lead times involved. At least it is not a new model from scratch. Seems like a reasonable business decision to take the excellent Vision platform and put a new face on it. The original one was "curious" at best.

I like the Victory motor. It is powerful and of modern design. If in the market for one of these, this bike would get strong consideration. I am not in the market for one of these though, and I suppose that is Victory's greatest hurdle. The Victory line tends to be admired by those with no interest in buying, and generally shunned by the Longride types who are actual owners of this type of motorcycle. Good thing Polaris has deep pockets. They will hang in there. I would not worry about support down the road if I owned a Victory. They are in this for the long haul.

Victory needs to pick up where Buell left off and venture into markets other than just cruisers. Sad about Buell - the new Rotax powered models were getting on the plot big time and then the plug got pulled. I think if an American company built a reasonably competitive super sport and/or adventure type bike, people would buy them.

I would love a super standard bike like my FZ1 with a 125 hp Rotax twin in it, for example, because 125 hp (or more) liter class sporting twin motors are just plain cool. My TL1000 taught me that. Where are all those orphaned Rotax Helicon motors going to go? I say stick 'em a new Victory line. Pity the economy sucks. It just can't happen. Maybe someday.

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Old 11-28-2009, 08:39 AM   #2
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Well Duken, some insightfull stuff there. But the biggest thing I fear is a repeat of the Wiemar fiasco in Germany before WWII. Carter printed 12% more currency in the last two years of his failed administration, and interest rates shot up to 20%. Guess how much the Obama man has had printed? Over 126% more currency. And now China is talking of throwing all those T Bills on the open market, which would make the once mighty USD worth about .38 cents.

Back to motorcycles, the vintage scene it taking off at light-speed, old Japanese in-line fours and dual-sport 4 stroke hondas from the early 80's are hot items. Vintage MX is booming, and all those old CB350's that have been sitting in a garage for 20 years are getting dusted off and ridden again. I drove my van to Newcombs after the big fire and there were a lot more old 20-30 year old tricked out bikes there than I'd ever seen in the past. Riders are realizing again you can have just as much fun with 30 horsepower...
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Old 11-28-2009, 08:43 AM   #3
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Well Duken, some insightfull stuff there. But the biggest thing I fear is a repeat of the Wiemar fiasco in Germany before WWII. Carter printed 12% more currency in the last two years of his failed administration, and interest rates shot up to 20%. Guess how much the Obama man has had printed? Over 126% more currency. And now China is talking of throwing all those T Bills on the open market, which would make the once mighty USD worth about .38 cents.

Back to motorcycles, the vintage scene it taking off at light-speed, old Japanese in-line fours and dual-sport 4 stroke hondas from the early 80's are hot items. Vintage MX is booming, and all those old CB350's that have been sitting in a garage for 20 years are getting dusted off and ridden again. I drove my van to Newcombs after the big fire and there were a lot more old 20-30 year old tricked out bikes there than I'd ever seen in the past. Riders are realizing again you can have just as much fun with 30 horsepower...
Sorry. The excess printing occurred during the last of the Bush Administration and was done by the Fed without asking anyone. You didn't think that the US Govt controls its own money supply any more? LOL!

Note that the same "geniuses" that got us in this mess... Bernacke, Geithner, etc. ..... are still running the show.

Club of Rome, Dude, Club of Rome.
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Old 11-28-2009, 11:47 AM   #4
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Nope, sorry there doctor, per the Federal reserve's own admission they have printed over 126% more money in the last 11 months. Like Frankie the Gimp, when the dollar isn't worth spit, you pay back the Federal reserve with devalued currency, making a great deal in the process. Where do you think all the interest goes? Riiight, the fed reserve. So actually the Fed could care less if they're being paid back with worthless currency, just as long as they get paid.
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Old 11-29-2009, 10:21 AM   #5
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Nope, sorry there doctor, per the Federal reserve's own admission they have printed over 126% more money in the last 11 months. Like Frankie the Gimp, when the dollar isn't worth spit, you pay back the Federal reserve with devalued currency, making a great deal in the process. Where do you think all the interest goes? Riiight, the fed reserve. So actually the Fed could care less if they're being paid back with worthless currency, just as long as they get paid.
Hmmm... if you are blaming Obama for printing 126% more money (than when?) and letting the dollar slip you get two things wrong.

First its not the Big-O who decides how much money is to be printed, not now and even less when most of the slip happened (as he was not in power yet). Second, its a GOOD thing for American industry that loadsa dollars flood the market and the value goes down.

Why its a good thing is, as was already pointed out, foreign imports go up in price. You'll notice that when you'd have to sell your mobile home and send your wife hooking to get that retro Ducati leather jacket from Italy.

AND domestic exports enjoy a boom as American products get cheaper in relation. In other words, American industries get a huge cost benefit without doing anything.

You wouldn't believe that with the news you read GM and Chrysler going bankrupt etc. But that is only because they got complacent. They didn't keep up with the competition.

- cruiz-euro
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Old 11-29-2009, 11:56 AM   #6
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Thanks for indulging me on this massive off topic economic foray. It is great to see what others have to say on this.

I think letting the dollar's value drop is a tactical decision on the Fed's part. They can raise taxes or they can print money and in effect tax us by reducing our purchasing power. No matter what, there may be delayed consequences, but there is never a free lunch. The "people" are just too self absorbed and uninformed to realize they are being taken for a massive ride.

The Chinese have got to be hating the dollar devaluation. They put the screws to the world by artificially holding their currency too low in value and accumulating a massive trade surplus. Now the US is returning the favor with monetary policy that is letting the dollar tank, and there is China, holding all that debt, only to be paid in devalued dollars down the road.

At some point interest rates in the US are going to have to rise sharply, especially if other countries are able to get off the low interest rate economic heroin before us. The US has become addicted to low rates. It is gonna be one hell of a withdrawl spasm when foreign debtholders demand higher interest payments from the US on our debt. We screwed China and China really does have the power to screw us back even worse. They could dump their debt holdings on the market and kill the dollar. I have read articles that suggest they already are and the buyer is the US government using stimulus funds! Talk about printing money for nothing.

My response to this landscape has been to hold investment cash in gold, well managed foreign currencies (easy to do now via the Merk Hard Currency Fund) and inflation protected "TIPS".

My history is I got greedy and burned during the tech bubble. Invested 5K into an Internet startup, it went to 50K in value in 8 months. I refused to sell, not wanting to pay short term capital gains taxes. My best friend begged me - pay the f$#cking taxes! Of course it tanked, I barely got out with $2,500. Lesson learned.

Next up for me was my SoCal home tripling in value. Saw "NINJA" loans going on and everybody was gonna be a real estate tycoon. This felt rather familiar, so I sold it in 2004, to much derision from those around me, moved to far cheaper Colorado (land of awesome MC riding) and have been awaiting today's nightmare scenario ever since. It took longer than I thought to get here, but here it is.

I got out of the market mostly in Sept. 2007. Started getting back in as the Dow went down below 9K. I thought that was getting near bottom. How quaint. Threw the rest on the bonfire as the Dow went into the 6K range. The last few months have been good. I think it is time to thank the market and pull back again.

Just my opinion. Google Peter Schiff and his book "Crashproof". I read it and am at least partially acting on it. The man has a point.
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Old 11-29-2009, 02:30 PM   #7
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Funny how things works isn't it? The USA has a 200 year run, and because of not learning the lessons of history, might fail in the early 21st Century.

You can draw parallels between Ancient Rome and all that, but what it came down to in my mind was the loss of our industrial base, followed close by balkanization, with the final nail in the coffin being our current situation as a debtor nation, under a cruel master. These are topics too complex to even try and discuss, but it's clear we followed in similar paths as PAX ROME. Immigration being one topic that could fill a few vollumes.

Why do you think China is gearing up for war? They've bought most of the former Soviet Union's blue water navy, and are going through a massive technological expantion in all branches of Red Chinese Military. I think China is worried that if they do throw our tbills on the fire, we'll just say "No dice, come and get it,"

Remember when Brazil went into a military dictatorship, and nationalized all the foreign companies on their soil? GM, Ford, Volkswagen, etc...told everybody to stick it. No one did anything. I know that's a bad example, Brazil, but the same type of "FYou" logic applies when the survival of a country and way of life is at stake.

A Nation can't declair bankrupsy...
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Old 11-29-2009, 03:12 PM   #8
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The one thing the separates the US from prior currency meltdown scenarios is that the US still enjoys reserve status of it's currency. We get one hell of a free pass because of this. If we ever read about the dollar losing reserve status, it is really time to seriously panic.

The US enjoys what has been called an “exorbitant privilege” because as the provider of the global reserve currency, the U.S. tends to reap a capital gain when the dollar depreciates, since U.S. assets abroad are mostly foreign currency-denominated while U.S. liabilities owed to foreign investors are almost entirely dollar-denominated. Therefore, an orderly decline in the dollar may reduce the value of the U.S. net international liability position, so long as the U.S. retains the reserve status privilege.

Foreign producers who export to the U.S. may be willing to absorb the weaker dollar in their profit margins to some extent, but eventually, a weaker dollar will likely worsen the U.S. terms of trade, bringing a decline in U.S. demand and living standards.

We are playing a dicy game with our currency. We are taking advantage of our dollar's reserve status, but if we take this too far, the world is going to take away the candy jar. Central banks have been buying gold. India just bought tons of gold from the IMF. There is a reason for that. A portion of my cash is in gold too, via the GLD ETF. Follow the big boys

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Old 11-29-2009, 06:09 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mscuddy View Post
Funny how things works isn't it? The USA has a 200 year run, and because of not learning the lessons of history, might fail in the early 21st Century.

You can draw parallels between Ancient Rome and all that, but what it came down to in my mind was the loss of our industrial base, followed close by balkanization, with the final nail in the coffin being our current situation as a debtor nation, under a cruel master. These are topics too complex to even try and discuss, but it's clear we followed in similar paths as PAX ROME. Immigration being one topic that could fill a few vollumes.

Why do you think China is gearing up for war? They've bought most of the former Soviet Union's blue water navy, and are going through a massive technological expantion in all branches of Red Chinese Military. I think China is worried that if they do throw our tbills on the fire, we'll just say "No dice, come and get it,"

Remember when Brazil went into a military dictatorship, and nationalized all the foreign companies on their soil? GM, Ford, Volkswagen, etc...told everybody to stick it. No one did anything. I know that's a bad example, Brazil, but the same type of "FYou" logic applies when the survival of a country and way of life is at stake.

A Nation can't declair bankrupsy...
The Chinese can buy all the old Soviet crap they like. Their Navy (or anyone else's) wouldn't last a long afternoon against our sub fleet alone. And their naval air power is a bad bad joke. Even the Taiwanese sub fleet with the new quiet diesels would make an invasion a very chancy proposition. And Taiwan is only a couple hundred miles away. China is like 8,000 miles away from us. Good luck with that invasion.
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Old 11-29-2009, 07:41 PM   #10
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Yeah but if you listen to any of the former generals and admirals who defected from Red China, and now are running liquor stores in Westminster and Irvine, they all said China is just waiting for the USA to get overextended on two-three fronts, and then they'd do as they please with Taiwan, and any other country once under the sphere of Chinese influence.

And when China buys up three BILLION dollars of our debt a month...

...what would this administration do if they massed an attack on Taiwan?

Nothing. And that's the point, we've been bought.
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