July 30, 2014

We Welcomed Another Kennon to the Family

Tara Beth Kennon

A year ago, I posted a picture of my younger brother secretly flying to Colorado to propose to his girlfriend.  Now, after 24+ hours in which we had a rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, photo shoot, ceremony, and reception, I am beyond thrilled to say that he and Tara are married! Both Aaron and I adore her; she's smart, beautiful, patient, and she and Caleb just fit.  It's one of those cases where whatever dreams my brother has for his life, he will reach them far quicker because she is on the j … [Read more...]

Reflections on Superman and Mickey Mouse

Superman Man of Steel Henry Cavill

I was reading a film review by actor James Franco of the new Superman movie, which I saw at the midnight premier right before I hopped on the flight out to California for the weekend.  My family wanted to go, and I've always like Henry Cavill's work since the adaptation of the seminal work of Alexander Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo, so I thought it would be fun.  When we were in the theater, the talk turned to the actual character of Superman.  Basically, what Franco says almost perfectly enc … [Read more...]

The Supreme Court Effectively Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage at the Federal Level, Strikes Down California’s Marriage Ban, and Let’s Stand a Lower Court Ruling That States Can’t Strip Away Benefits Such as Health Care from Gay Couples

Marriage Equality After Supreme Court

As you are no doubt aware - every major newspaper in the country has it splashed across the front page and it's been all over television and the Internet for the past twenty four hours - the Supreme Court, yesterday and today, handed down a set of complicated rulings that get into issues such as standing, equal protection, and state sovereignty, but that have the net effect of a near across-the-board win for equality groups. United States v. Windsor: The Supreme Court struck down the Federal … [Read more...]

A Quiet Evening at Home, Reading Outside

Reading at Dusk

My day did not go as expected.  I spotted an error in some closing documents from a title company that did not match what was supposed to be in effect for what I was working on and had to fix that immediately.  The good news is, there were some awesome people who got it taken care of within a few hours.  They have ordered the original to be shredded.  It turns out a replacement wasn't necessary because the correct document had already been signed; the error one was a duplicate of a form that nev … [Read more...]

The Press In The United States Seems to Have Crossed the Rubicon – Just Look at Today’s Coverage of the Supreme Court’s Ruling on the Voting Right Act of 1965

Justice Department Voting Rights Act 1965

Almost all of the news media is reporting that the Supreme Court gutted the voting rights act this morning.  That is both deceptive and factually incorrect.  The court has specifically avoided ruling on the constitutionality of the voting rights act, instead leaving it to the Congress to decide, most recently sidestepping the questions in the June 22, 2009 decision.  It did not address the question of whether or not the law itself is permissible. The Supreme Court did not strike down the Voting … [Read more...]

Mail Bag: Stocks Are Bad and Hope Is Lost

Mail Bag Joshua Kennon Pen

I mentioned the academic returns from Ibbotson & Associates again - the ones that showed the long-term average rate of compounding for investors who were passive and only held large, profitable businesses, with dividends reinvested came in around 10% with an experience range of 8% to 12% depending on the specific starting year - and received a message. You "Pie-in-the Sky' Gurus seem to provide these "Dreamscape" non existent anymore theoretical returns that only exist in your out of date … [Read more...]

The Sky Just Turned Into a Cutscene from a Japanese RPG

Midwestern Sky to the East

So this is happening outside right now ... It's moving quickly; the clouds look like they are rolling or boiling, running and cascading over one another as they race across the sky. I walked around and took pictures of the sky from different directions.  I love weather like this.  There is nothing better than being inside as it is happening, especially if you are in a well-built house that is sheltered from the winds.   All I can hear in my head is the "Dark Skies & Stormy S … [Read more...]

A Look at Laugh-O-Gram Films, the Business Walt Disney Bankrupted

Laugh-O-Gram in Kansas City - Walt Disney's First Company

In the past week, we've talked about the phenomenal success of an investor who bought shares of Walt Disney Productions (now called The Walt Disney Company), a decision that would have turned a 1,000 share position costing $13,880 into somewhere between $26,672,640 and $40,000,000 between 1957 and 2013.  We even looked inside the secret family holding company, WED Enterprises, Walt Disney used to build his own family's wealth and retain power.  Most people don't know that before those two firms, … [Read more...]

How Walt Disney Used WED Enterprises, Inc. as a Private Family Holding Company

WED Enterprises Disney Private Holding Company

After our discussion of The Walt Disney IPO earlier today, which was born out of Walt and his family consolidating three of the companies they owned underneath a single umbrella and issuing shares to the public to help finance the ever-expanding empire, including the creation of the Disneyland theme park in Anaheim, California, I thought it would be interesting to take a look inside the private family holding company he setup around the same time.   He ran this private family holding company p … [Read more...]

Walt Disney IPO Case Study – A Look at 56 Years of Investment Returns

Walt Disney Company Headquarters

With the talk of investing in Walt Disney shares as part of my souvenir program during my weekend trip to Disneyland in California, I thought it would be fun to go back and do a case study of the Walt Disney IPO.  I originally got the idea the last time we were in Walt Disney World, and had started the draft but never finished it.  I took some time this afternoon to wrap it up and hit the publish button. The history of the firm is an interesting one, not just from a commercial perspective, b … [Read more...]