DISCLAIMER: THE FOLLOWING "Cost of Freedom Recap" CONTAINS STRONG OPINIONS WHICH ARE NOT A REFLECTION OF THE OPINIONS OF FOX NEWS AND SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON AS INVESTMENT ADVICE WHEN MAKING PERSONAL INVESTMENT DECISIONS. IT IS FOX NEWS' POLICY THAT CONTRIBUTORS DISCLOSE POSITIONS THEY HOLD IN STOCKS THEY DISCUSS, THOUGH POSITIONS MAY CHANGE. READERS OF "Cost of Freedom Recap" MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN INVESTMENT DECISIONS.
Bulls & Bears
This past week's Bulls & Bears: Pat Dorsey, Morningstar.com director of stock research; Scott Bleier, HybridInvestors.com president; Tobin Smith, ChangeWave Research; Pat Dorsey, Morningstar.com; and John "Bradshaw" Layfield, Layfield Energy.
Trading Pit: Is Worst Over for Stocks and Economy?
A big week on Wall Street and Main Street. The Dow hitting 13K for the first time in nearly four months. And the April jobs report shows a labor market much healthier than everyone predicted. The jobless rate actually fell - at historic lows again! Is all this a strong sign that the worst is over for stocks and the economy?
John "Bradshaw" Layfield: For part of the stock market, yes. For the financials and real estate, no. But there are tons of good buys out there. This economy is not that bad!
Scott Bleier: I'm cautious. This is one of the worst crisises we have had in a decade. We have had a great run off the lows. People are going to get excited, but there is still more headline risk and probably a better chance to buy later in the summer. If you didn't buy in the abyss, wait.
Gary B Smith: Well, let's put it this way. I was bullish early, and I was bullish at the low. So I got it half right and half wrong. When you start seeing all these headlines about how we are over 13,000 on the Dow, then it just seems that you need to be a little bit cautious. We have had a tremendous run since the lows in about mid-March, and everyone at that point thought, "that's it". I heard talks of depression at that point. Now it looks like we might not even have recession. Everyone is getting really excited, and yet you saw the action Friday when we gapped up at the open and then went nowhere. We still finished up for the day. But I would not be surprised if we had a pullback back into the low 12,000 area.
Pat Dorsey: Well, I guess I am a little nervous. I don't think we are going to have Armageddon. I think it was an extraordinary action the Fed took to prop up Bear Stearns. It gives us some confidence that we are not going to have the systemic risk. People are still losing jobs. Consumer spending is quite weak. Anecdotally, when I speak to people in Chicago and elsewhere, they are worried. There are layoffs happening. This is not the drive-by recession we had in 2000. I think there is more pain to come on the consumer side.
Tobin Smith: We have two economies. We have the global economy and the United States economy. In the United States economy, real estate is the worst offending region. The rest of the global economy is pulling us as the caboose, and we used to be the engine. That is ok. Then as we work through the excesses, you look through many stocks; you say they are cheap relative to anything out there. We can get a pull- back, but you should be a buyer on a pullback and not saying, "gosh I think the market is going to heck in a hand basket", because we are out of that!
Would Drilling for Oil in the U.S. Lower Gas Prices?
Talk about pain at the pump! Gas hitting a new record high almost every day this week. The national average now north of $3.60 a gallon with no relief in sight! Enough to get truckers storming Capitol Hill to protest the record prices. And Congress, well, doing nothing except standing in the way of drilling for more oil right here in the U.S. Would drilling for oil in the United States lower gas prices?
John "Bradshaw" Layfied: You bet! The tree-hugging liberals infuriate me. We have communist rigs drilling off of Key West, and we can't do that. You are telling me they are more environmentally friendly than Exxon Mobil. We could drill for shale oil. Refineries are being built in Mexico and Canada. We are being your hurt by these policies.
Pat Dorsey: I think it doesn't do a thing to do solve the problem. We are addicted to oil. By drilling in the U.S. for more, would be like offering a cigarette to a nicotine attack. The money will be better spent elsewhere.
Tobin Smith: We have to take advantage of the resources we have. And we would drill in a smart and efficient way.
Stock X-Change: 'Iron Man' Stocks
Market gurus by day, stock super heroes by night! "Iron Man" stocks right now in the Stock X-Change.
Tobin Smith: Market Vectors Solar Energy ETF (KWT )
John "Bradshaw" Layfield: Yum! Brands (YUM )
Pat Dorsey: Kraft (KFT )
Gary B Smith: American Express (AXP )
Scott Bleier: Mueller Industries (MLI )
Tobin Smith: iPhones help call up profits for "SNCR "; doubles in 6-9 months
Gary B Smith: Recession fears over! The dollar wins! "UUP " benefits from the bounce
Scott Bleier: Honeywell (HON ) helps fight disasters… and it's a great stock!
Pat Dorsey: Buffett likes "KMX " and so do I! Up 50 percent in 2 years
John "Bradshaw" Layfield: McCain wins, great news for oil drillers! Buy and hold "RIG "
Cavuto on Business
On Saturday, May 3, 2008, Neil Cavuto was joined by Charles Payne, wstreet.com; Tracy Byrnes, FOX Business Network; Adam Lashinsky, Fortune Magazine; David Nelson, DC Nelson Asset Mgmt; Troy Dunn, "Young Bucks…" Author; and Chris Kofinis, Democratic Strategist.
Bottom Line: Blame Congress for Your Sky-High Grocery Bills?
Neil Cavuto: Blaming farmers for the food fiasco. That's exactly what some in Congress are doing right now. But, should Congress be blaming itself? Check this out: Since many of our lawmakers passed an ethanol bill in 2005, corn has shot up 120 percent, eggs up 90 percent, and milk is up 20 percent. Is the sticker shock at the grocery store Congress's fault? What do you think, Charles?
Charles Payne: Absolutely! Congress, and to a lesser extent the president, are to blame. They bought into this whole green movement, which puts Mother Earth over human beings. Here's the thing, they made a lot of assumptions: The assumption that anything is cheaper and better than oil… maybe that's not true; the assumption that for some reason if we go ahead and drill our own assets, it is going to be unfortunate because we may upset the mating rituals of the worms that are native to Alaska; and the final assumption that you can fool people. Maybe it was unintended consequences, but the poorest people in the world are being crushed by this, and sooner or later we are all going to be crushed by it.
Chris Kofinis: I think it's a cop out. If you look at the statistics over the last seven years of the Bush administration, gas prices have more than doubled, the price of oil has more than quadrupled. We all know the basis of food product delivery is on trucks, trains, or whatever… and the basis of that price going up is oil and gas. We should blame the oil companies who are making record profits! We have to have a serious investigation as to whether this has been price gouging or unfair speculation. Blaming Congress is just a cop out.
Adam Lashinsky: The two of you are talking past each other to make political points. First of all, Charles, to say "Oh, by the way, the president had something to do with it…" Of course the president had something to do with it! In his 2006, 2007, and 2008 State of the Union Addresses, he talked about ethanol. He signed the bills that Congress passed. It's sort of silly to talk about Congress. That is a government thing. It's fine. But, let's get to what's actually going on. We have a bad biofuels policy in the United States. We have stupid tariffs. I agree with all of that. But, it's not the only factor driving up the price of grains. We ought to have a serious discussion about that instead of a finger-pointing, political one. Rising demand in China and India plays a big part. the drought in Australia, which is now over, played a big part, and the weakening dollar has played a huge part!
Tracy Byrnes: I can't believe that we can point the finger right at the president or the oil companies, quite frankly. If anything, let's point the finger at the Chinese or Indian people for wanting to eat healthy! I mean, their demand is what's causing all of this. Our population is 6.6 billion. We've more than doubled since 1965. There are a lot of people we are trying to feed.
Neil Cavuto: Why did it all suddenly happen within the last year?
Tracy Byrnes: Well because, just like everyone has been saying, oil prices have not helped things. The drought in Australia, for example. There have been big issues that have hurt food prices. And of course we have the president, Congress, and all of the biofuel issues. It's a combination of things.
Charles Payne: But, the big, big, big move just happened over the last couple of years when we insisted on making ethanol. That's when we saw the big spike. The reality is it's just been over the past couple of years where we have seen these things take off like a rocket.
Chris Kofinis: But we've seen the price of oil and gas skyrocket over the past year.
Neil Cavuto: Troy, I want to go to you because the argument seems to be that food inflation has run amuck right now and is out of control. We can argue about what started it all, but now the genie can't be put back in the bottle. Is that true?
Troy Dunn: What everybody calls finger-pointing is actually identifying the problem to get to the solution. To get back to the point – Congress is the responsible factor here. Some of Adam's points are correct; there are other factors that contribute to this. But, we have to remember that we are the leaders of the free world. Whether we like to say that out loud or not, it is a fact and the results are triggering off of what we're doing. If Congress is guilty of anything, it is of not having a spine. They have taken a beating from the tree-huggers. I say to the tree-huggers: Congratulations! You got what you asked for!
Chris Kofinis: That's just ridiculous.
Tracy Byrnes: You know why the price of eggs is up? The price of eggs is up 35 percent year over year, not because of Congress, not because of oil, but because they are slaughtering the chickens and selling the meat. So our poor little chickens can't lay eggs. This has nothing to do with President Bush. There are a multitude of reasons why food prices are higher. It's not all Congress!
Troy Dunn: They are higher because we have to pay for fuel for the poor guys driving it around. Fuel is high because Congress doesn't want to go poke a hole in ANWR and pull up the oil. And that's because of the pandering to environmentalists!
Chris Kofinis: That's ridiculous. If there's any pandering, it's to the oil companies.
Neil Cavuto: One at a time!
Chris Kofinis: I think the failure here is that we seriously need an energy policy that balances all the dynamics of supply and demand. There's the problem. We really haven't done enough. The oil companies and others have done everything they can to stop new development, new green technologies, and biofuel production. It's easy to say that biofuel production is the reason food prices are rising. We can continue to put our head in the sand and continue to dream that oil and gas prices are not…
Neil Cavuto: Chris. Chris. I want to raise something with you.
Chris Kofinis: Sure.
Neil Cavuto: Let's say you are partly right. I know you hate the oil companies because they are not looking for alternatives to a business that would kill them. So, I guess that's their fault… But, let's say you opened up more areas for them to get oil. Let's say we did the kind of things that you like to do… which is conserve oil. Let's say we all agreed that we found an alternative energy. I'm saying, why don't we all agree on doing all the above AND have at it? But, every time we look at exploration, you say no, no, no. On the other side, they will argue no conservation. Why don't we just throw everything out and see what sticks?
Chris Kofinis: Not that I can speak for the entire left by any means, but I think you'd have more people who would be open to those arguments if there was at least a serious bi-partisan, cross-industry effort to improve efficiency and conservation. Until that, it ends up becoming that drilling is the answer. We know that's not the answer!
Neil Cavuto: How do we know? We had a chance to address this seven years ago. We had a chance to address this 12 years ago. We had the first chance to address this 20 years ago! At any one of those opportunities to explore this, we would have had access to new oil. I want to be clear on this. Because you can't have your oily cake and eat it too.
Chris Kofinis: That's a pretty good line, Neil.
Neil Cavuto: You can't keep telling people "Do it my way or the highway."
Chris Kofinis: I don't think it's so much do it my way or the highway… The problem is simply increasing the supply part of this, where we are simply going to expand production and drilling, means we are avoiding the problem. The core problem is that we have an incredible addiction to oil. It is an economic security problem; it is a national security problem. We end up enriching the Saudis every day. I don't understand that.
Neil Cavuto: We have an addiction to a lot of other things… like Tracy said, we're killing the little chickens! Chris, I'd love to get you back here because apparently you're killing the chickens, too!
Head to Head: Uncle Sam, Retailers Say Spend Rebate; 'Bad' for Economy?
Neil Cavuto: Free money and free gifts if you blow your entire stimulus check at one store. That's what big-name chains are urging millions of Americans to do this week. It's all to stimulate their sales and our economy. But, someone says if you want to help our economy, save it! Don't spend it. It's time to go "Head to Head."
Tracy Byrnes: You should not spend that stimulus check! If you go into a store with that check, you're going to spend two or three times more than that!
Neil Cavuto: I think people have already done it!
Tracy Byrnes: I think so, too. It's probably sitting on their credit card. What people should do is put that money in the bank. Last year, only 1.2 percent of gross national wages were saved. Meanwhile, disposable income was up almost 12 percent over the last seven years. Only 1 percent last year was put in the bank?! That's pathetic.
Neil Cavuto: I don't believe those figures. I don't believe they take into account other ways to amass funds.
Tracy Byrnes: Nevertheless, we know for a fact that people are not saving.
Neil Cavuto: Because we're murdering chickens.
David Nelson: I think the money has to be spent. We've sent his kind of stimulus in the past and it does have an affect. If you get about 2/3s this money into the economy, by Christmas, you're talking about a 1 percent jump in GDP. The money needs to be spent.
Tracy Byrnes: That's not good for the individual.
Neil Cavuto: Troy, one of the things the Treasury Secretary was telling me is that he expects this to lead to 500,000 to 600,000 jobs. Do you buy that?
Troy Dunn: Well, I would love to buy into that. But, I gotta tell ya. If you take that stimulus check, you could in one hour start a teeny, tiny business out of your house and start generating income. You could turn your rebate check, or as I like to call it, your welfare check, into 2, 3, 4 times the amount of money.
Neil Cavuto: What are you doing out of your house? I don't wanna go there…
Adam Lashinsky: Not everybody is a closet entrepreneur.
Neil Cavuto: I'm not worried about entrepreneurs, I'm thinking other things…
Adam Lashinsky: I know you are.
Troy Dunn: C'mon now, Neil. My kids are watching!
Adam Lashinsky: The question is not what's best for Wal-Mart. Of course Wal-Mart's going to do what's best for it, which is to encourage people to spend money. But, that's not what's best for individuals, especially individuals who are over-taxed or people who have too-little equity in their home. It'd be far better for someone who has next-to-no equity in their home to take that money and pay down their mortgage a bit so they are not caught in a bind in the future.
Charles Payne: Adam! Tell 'em to go out and spend the money. First of all, they didn't earn it. It's found money. If you walk out the door and find $20, go spend it! Don't be tricked by the government! Don't spend more than what you get. If you get $1,200, spend it! We've talked about how the dollar's going down anyway; it's probably going to be worth a lot less by the end of the year. Go out and spend.
Tracy Byrnes: Charles! That's terrible. You know for a fact no one's going to spend $1,200 on the penny. They're going to spend $1,600 or $1,800 and that extra is going to go on their credit card.
Charles Payne: Well, that'd be unfortunate.
David Nelson: You're playing moral advocate. That's not your job!
Neil Cavuto: Dave's a former rock star. He knows something about not being a moral advocate.
David Nelson: Neil, this is a moot point. The money is getting spent. We can talk about it all we want, take all the polls you want. People say they will save the money. But, polls have been done in the past and they show the stimulus check will end up in the economy. It should. It's not Wal-Mart's job to do anything other than to get the people in the store.
Charles Payne: Listen, if you can go to a store and they give you 10 percent or 20 percent more than what the government gives you… take it! Take it! Don't listen to Adam.
Neil Cavuto: Troy, what were you saying?
Troy Dunn: I was saying everybody keeps agreeing on one thing, which is the money is going to get spent and there's nothing we can do about that. But, how the money gets spent is critical. If everybody went out and bought big screen TVs, sure, a couple of companies will do well. But, what's going to happen is people are going to blow the money on food and fuel, two industries that don't need stimulus.
Neil Cavuto: Troy, I have to ask you, what business are you starting in your house where you say I could triple my money in short order?
Troy Dunn: Shameless plug in 3, 2, 1: My book, "Young Bucks…" which is for parents teaching their children how to start businesses for less than $300… My 6 year old son makes $85 an hour in the cookie business. It cost him $20 to start the business. If you have $500 or $1000 of free money, you can absolutely start a service business out of your house and have some chance of making back some income!
Neil Cavuto: Troy, I'm going to book your son next week!
More for Your Money: 'Stimulating' Stocks: Stocks to Buy with Your Rebate Check!
Neil Cavuto: Stimulating stocks to buy whether you're getting a stimulus check or not! It's time to get "More for Your Money."
Charles Payne: NetEase.com (NTES)
*Charles owns shares of this stock.
David Nelson: Western Digital (WDC)
*David owns shares of this stock.
Adam Lashinsky: Northern Trust (NTRS )
FOX on the Spot!
David Nelson: Oil Prices Drop to $80/bbl; "CAL " Will Soar 50 percent by '09
Charles Payne: Bet on Commodities! "POT " Grows 25 percent by '09
Adam Lashinsky: Woodstock for Capitalists! Watch Warren Work & Buy "BRKB "
Troy Dunn: 3D Home Theaters New Norm; Electronics/Retail Stocks to Jump!
Tracy Byrnes: Forget Write Downs; Companies "Write Up" in Q3
Neil Cavuto: Get Ready for $200 Billion MORE in Economic Stimulus!
Forbes on FOX
In Focus: 4-Day Workweek: Best Way to Bring Down Gas Prices?
Josh Lipton, Forbes.com Staff Writer: I'm a huge fan of the 4-day workweek. It is going to reduce demand and moderate prices. And there are other benefits like fewer pollutants, you can spend more time with your wife and kids. And let us not forget about telecommuting. Let's take advantage of technology.
Mike Ozanian, National Editor: Well assuming you don't drive on the day you have off, maybe this will knock prices down a bit. So what? At the end of the day you will have less money to spend on gas. So you're right back at where you started from.
Elizabeth MacDonald, Fox Business Network: I think a 4-day workweek for government workers is a great idea. You go in these government offices down in Washington, D.C. and you can throw a bowling ball down the hallway and not hit anybody.
Victoria Barret, Associate Editor: This does nothing when you want to talk about demand for fuel, this is a very tiny drop in the bucket. Demand is coming from China. We are paying high prices at the pump because of a weak dollar and because of speculators. This doesn't make a difference. It's just gimmicks.
Quentin Hardy, Silicon Valley Bureau Chief: We are not talking about a 4-day workweek. We are talking about a fifth day of the workweek where you work at home. Frankly high energy prices change things around. If you don't think so, you are likely to make the same mistake Detroit made in the 1970's when the Japanese came in with cheap cars and killed them. You work at home over the Internet. Workers have quotas they have to meet. It is a great idea.
Lacey Rose, Forbes.com Sr Reporter: I don't buy that. Why stop at four days? Why not 3-day workweek? It is crazy. The only thing this is going to produce is a less productive workforce.
Flipside: Best Way to Boost Economy: Give 'The Rich' Rebate Checks!
Lacey Rose: From a purely economic standpoint it makes sense. You put the money in the wallets of the wealthy and they will turn it around and spend it. They'll spend it on discretionary items. That's what we want. However, I'm not saying that others shouldn't get it. I think they should too.
Quentin Hardy: I have entered the "Forbes on FOX" bizarre-o universe. This is fabulous news for polo mallet manufacturers and America's hard-working chinchilla ranchers.
Jack Gage, Associate Editor: This is about stimulating the economy. When you talk about giving tax rebates or tax cuts to the rich, that's really a way to stimulate the economy because the so-called rich are actually the entrepreneurs who are creating jobs, growing businesses and fueling this economy.
Victoria Barret: Well, my problem is we are having the government tell us what "rich" is. "Rich" in one part of the country might not be "rich" in another part of the country. And rich if you have 12 kids might not be the same as rich if you have zero kids. One of the cut-offs for an individual is $75,000. If you live in San Francisco making $75,000 you do not feel rich. You can afford maybe a $300,000 home, which consists of a shack with maybe running water. That is not rich. If you are going to give out money, why not give it to everyone?
Elizabeth MacDonald: If you look at the data about who will be spending or saving the money, those who are saving the money are those people in the $175,000 range. The people who are saving the money are doing it in anticipation of the cement heads in Congress, in anticipation of the stupidity of the Democrats who are going to raise taxes. If they're saving the money, they are saving it to pay taxes later on.
John Rutledge, Forbes Contributor: This is not only a bad idea, it is a horrible idea. The rich save money. That is why they are rich. This idea of giving checks to people to stimulate the economy is a dumb idea from a macro-economics class in college. It doesn't work. This is about politics, not about economics. There's no impact whatsoever on the economy coming from this. It is a back-to-school sale for retailers. By the way, their profit margins will fall becuase the retailers are all trying to attract the checks in by giving people free discounts to spend the money in their stores. That will come directly out of their gross margins.
No Spring Rebound for Homes Is Good for Stocks?
Jack Gage: If people were taking out subprime mortgages or home equity loans and investing in the stock market five years ago, that would have been a home run for them. Instead they took out home equity loans and paid for flat screen TVs and unnecessary home improvements.
John Rutledge: The real estate market is butt ugly but that doesn't help the stock market. They money doesn't go over to the stock market. It just disappears. Housing prices are still falling. This is a sign of a broken or frozen bond market. But it is beginning to heal. As it is healing, people are noticing that the company's profits have not disappeared. Interest rates are still low and stocks still cheap. That's why stock prices are rising now. We will still see 14,000 this year.
Josh Lipton: I'm still a bull. The housing market is a mess and it's going to stay a mess. The stock market has priced in the bad news. You have to be encouraged by this market. You see fear subsiding, you see banks recapitalizing. You have to be a believer.
Mike Ozanian: The more home prices fall, the more money people have to use to pay their mortgages. Their monthly payments are going up. So they have less money for stocks.
Victoria Barret: Houses aren't like stocks. During the tech bubble, the stock market got crushed and a lot of money went into housing. It doesn't work in the reverse. It is not like they are trading houses back and forth. You are living in your home. You're seeing the value go down. It is the fact that you are going to put less in the market and you're going to hold more cash.
Informer: Spring Rebound Stocks
Mike Ozanian: Bruker Corp. (BRKR)
John Rutledge: iShares MSCI Pacific ex-Japan (EPP)
Jack Gage: Mercadolibre (MELI)
Josh Lipton: Goldman Sachs (GS)
Would Hillary's Universal Healthcare Bankrupt America?
Jonathan Hoenig, CapitalistPig Asset Management: Look how well we are doing with all the other indictment programs. Her health care plan will make health care less available for everyone. You will have people waiting months and months for a cardiologist. You are going to get a health care system run like the post office or the Walter Reed hospital.
Wayne Rogers, Wayne Rogers & Co: Look, all you have to do is look at Medicare and you see what could happen. If Medicare is an example of what her health care is going to be, it is going to bankrupt us. There is no way that can work. It is insanity. Any government program like Jonathan says is going to cost you 10 times what it would do if the private sector contracted for it. For example, in a small town in Arizona right outside of Phoenix, of Scottsdale, they contract privately for their fire services. They have the lowest fire rates and insurance rates in the country. That is why this can work. You go to the emergency room in any hospital in the U.S. and you get free medical care. It is already there. The health care system is an example of what has happened already. If that is not a lesson already, then we have to be morons. You can't say that the government has run a good plan with Medicare. It hasn't happened.
Sascha Burns, Democratic Strategist: The republicans have had eight years to implement their health care policy. The one thing that has worked is the Medicare drug program. Which was a huge expense. Let's put in a little economic perspective here…
If the government took on covering every uninsured person, with no cost savings counted, a partial estimate is $35 billion to $70 billion...a big spread. That is what, 3-6 months in Iraq? Unless you think Iraq is taking us bankrupt in one year, then it is hard to argue. In terms of the health care issue, it isn't working now.
Jonas Max Ferris, MaxFunds.com: Wasting money on one hand doesn't rationalize wasting money on other hand. $1,000 per person seems a little cheap. There is nothing that is going to bankrupt the country about national health care as long as it is an inexpensive crummy plan where you are waiting in lines. It is not a very great service. I am for a plan that is inexpensive and affordable for everyone.
Are High Food Prices Making Americans Fat?
Keri Glassman, Nutritionist: People are saying prices are rising on healthy foods and their getting fries and McDonald's instead. You don't always have to buy the most costly food products to eat healthy and there are ways to eat healthy and not spend so much money. You can get the value meal at McDonald, but you can also get their grilled chicken. People are using it as an excuse, but in the meantime it may be adding to the obesity epidemic. There are so many ways to eat healthy and less expensive when you are out. There are healthy options when you are out, but you can also buy in bulk. It's also a matter of being prepared. Two people working in a family don't have as much time to cook a big meal every night as opposed to a family with one working adult. You have to take the time out to be more prepared.
Gary Kaltbaum, GaryK.com: Price is always going to affect behavior. When prices go up, people are looking for low cost. When you go to the fast food restaurants, you get low cost. But unfortunately, 80 percent to 90 percent of the food in there is the french fries. And it has the great smell. It is definitely a contributing factor to the problem of obesity in this country.
Jonathan Hoenig: We have been obese for a long time in this country. It is a function of the country's prosperity. We should be proud! People ought to just get off their butts and eat less. It always comes back to people taking responsibility for their own decisions. People who are fat by and large have chosen to be fat. When you eat at McDonald's every day and never work out, you are going to be fat.
Wayne Rogers: I think we are a rich country and we have taken advantage of it and everybody just eats a lot. This idea that there's some connection between the cost of food rising and being obese, I don't get that at all. I ate at this joint down
Here near my house this week…for six bucks I got two very nice pieces of catfish, and fresh vegetables, and iced tea for $6! What is driving the prices up more than anything is the cost of fuel to deliver that. Remember, 80 percent of our groceries come from trucks. That is what drives up the prices.
Jonas Max Ferris: Food is cheap in America and has been for a long time. What helps make us heavy is these pre-made foods. If you want to save money, then don't but the pre-made expensive food and start cooking healthier. I was in the supermarket, a dozen ears of corn is like $2. Is that really expensive?
Demolish Foreclosed Homes to Save Housing Market?
Wayne Rogers: The numbers speak for themselves. If you have abandoned houses, and the houses are not worth saving, yes, absolutely. Some of the most successful developments in the United States have been done through reconstruction agencies where they go in, take out a area, sell bonds and rebuilds that neighborhood. I am not saying do that for every house because some houses are worth saving, but I think it's a great idea.
Gary Kaltbaum: Good homes should stay right where they are. What they are doing in this city is a great idea. They are getting rid of dilapidated homes. These are crime havens…if you can get rid of those over time, it will eventually help the housing market overtime. There is no downside to this.
Jonas Max Ferris: I am all for production of new homes, but I have a problem with knocking down homes. I think they should get a little more creative and maybe give this house to people who lost their homes for some reason. I think you will be wrecking ball the whole town eventually.
Jonathan Hoenig: Who decides if a house is worth saving? Who decides if a house is dilapidated or not? That is what I don't understand. You are going to knock down an entire neighborhood where somebody actually lives? If truly no one owns it, it should be reposed by the city and resold. But the city shouldn't be in the redevelopment business.
Best Bets: Winner's Circle Stocks
Jonas Max Ferris: Brown-Forman Corporation (BF.B )
Jonathan Hoenig: J Crew (JCG )
Gary Kaltbaum: NIKE (NIKE )
Wayne Rogers: VCA Antech Inc. (WOOF )