zzyzzx's comments

« First    « Previous     Comments 15365 - 15404 of 15,404     Last »

  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 10, 10:54am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Goran_K says
this is not the way to solve the problem.

I have to wonder how that meeting went when someone came up with this idea. Seriously, an occasional inspection for someone living there or meth lab would have been sufficient.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 10, 12:08pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Satoshi_Nakamoto says
And this is different from Redfin how?

As far as I can tell, it's not.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 10, 12:35pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Now Seattle is taxing the shit out of soda:

Seattle has decided to impose a 1.75 cent per ounce tax on all sugary beverages within the city with the hopes of raising a $15 million revenue stream that it will use for programs to help people “have better access to fresh fruits and vegetables,” as Seattle station KIRO 7 explains. The price of Gatorade Frost Variety Pack at Costco, usually $15.99, with the $10.34 tax, shot up to $26.33, leaving customers with sticker-shock.

As with all excise taxes, this one is easily avoided: customers can visit Costco stores in nearby Tukwila or Shoreline and skip paying the City of Seattle’s Sweetened Beverage Tax. Customers are less likely to make extra inconvenient trips if the price changes are barely noticeable–but with such a steep price change, many residents will likely take the extra trip.

Some are saying they will switch to diet soda instead, which city officials say is “the point,” according to KIRO7. “Not necessarily to switch to diet soda, but getting consumers to go for healthier options.”

The government doesn’t actually want everyone to switch away from sugary drinks or it won’t be able to collect that $15 million it’s hoping for. That’s why using the tax code to punish or reward behavior is tragically short-sighted.

Government attempts to disincentive certain behavior often have subversive effects (beyond forcing people to take longer trips or purchase sugar-free brands.) The point of these policies is to drastically reduce usage; but while the pricing cuts demand, it also fuels smuggling and black markets.

A steep soda tax opens up the way for an illegal underground trade in soda. Before you laugh, realize that’s exactly the problem that arose in Philadelphia when similar taxes were introduced. In New York, these types of sin taxes led to stratospheric taxes on cigarettes, which buoyed an underground black market in “loosie” cigarettes. Tragically, police enforcement of the tax also led to the death of Eric Garner on Staten Island, who died in police custody after allegedly resisting arrest.

His action, selling loose cigarettes, was only a crime because of these types of policies. Governments, including the City of Seattle, should avoid creating similar situations.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 10, 12:38pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote

How to Make a Black Market

Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney has managed to do in six months what former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg couldn’t pull off in 12 years: pass a consumption tax on soft drinks. The Philly City Council still has to tie a couple of bows on Kenney’s bill—it imposes a 1.5 cent-per-ounce tax on all soda, regular and diet—but it should be law by next month. So chalk up a big win for the sweet-soda prohibitionists. They’ve been pushing without success for just such a law in New York for years, and no doubt they’ll be encouraged by Kenney’s coup.

The law of unintended consequences is ever present. Consider that Kenney’s tax adds 30 cents to the price of a 20-ounce bottle of soda, or $1.80 per six-pack. That may not be a budget buster for most people, but it could add to the incentive to cross city or state lines to go grocery shopping. However, for retailers who deal in, say, 100-case lots ($720), or major-market wholesalers handling 10,000-case shipments ($72,000), the temptation to integrate untaxed product into their inventories and pocket the difference is obvious. That’s how social-engineering taxes create black markets.

The Mackinac Center for Public Policy estimates that some 60 percent of the cigarettes smoked in New York—six packs in every ten-pack carton—were smuggled into the state. This isn’t surprising, given that combined city and state taxes amount to $5.85 per pack and drive the cost of a legal carton north of $140 in some parts of the city. Compare that to the standard $40-per-carton at Indian reservations and in low-tax states like Virginia and North Carolina and the payday for smugglers becomes compelling. Just last month, city and state tax officials took down a Chinatown-based smuggling ring that allegedly imported a million packs of contraband smokes into the city every week—roughly $10 million worth, or a potential half-billion-dollar-per-year market.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 11, 8:34am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

anon_e144f says
campaign contributions and all that.

7-11 did make campaign contributions to Trump.

First off the correct link to the article is this:

Which states:
The enforcement effort at 7-Eleven comes with some irony. The company’s president and CEO, Joseph DePinto, contributed $2,000 to Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016, federal records show.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 11, 9:43am   ↑ like (3)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

County Commissioner Proposes Idea to Use Bounty Hunters to Catch Cape’s ‘Criminal Illegal Aliens’
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 11, 9:54am   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Deporting the illegals will work quicker and cheaper.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 11, 11:20am   ↑ like (3)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

FP says
Canada has more immigration per capita than the US.

Mental note: Don't visit Canada!
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 11, 12:21pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

I would be looking for info on which is more to your liking on the TripAdvisor forums.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 12, 8:13am   ↑ like (3)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

We have too many foreigners now. Don't let in any until the ones that we have are full assimilated.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 12, 11:27am   ↑ like (5)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Ripped off from another forum:

1. Once, a friend of another volunteer wanted to earn some money by baking bread. He got a little bit of money together and used it to buy ingredients. He built a mud stove himself, and cooked 30 loaves of “village bread” - basically misshapen, doughy baguette. He took the bread to the road, and started to sell them, until his father came by. His father said, “You have bread! The family needs bread!” and took 20 loaves for himself and the rest of the kids (this particular father had 4 wives and 8 kids per wife). Our enterprising African friend was left bankrupt. He lost his entire initial investment and never made bread again.

This is the basic story of Africa: communalism gone insane. It is completely unthinkable to refuse a demand of an elder or a family member for money or food. People hid any small money they had, because if anyone knew they had it, there would be a line around the corner asking for loans and favors, and they would be honor-bound or whatever to say yes. I told my friends over and over to say no, and each time they politely explained to me that it was impossible. The whole system is built to pull people down to the lowest common denominator."

"2. Every day, I ate the same meal – a huge communal bowl of rice, with fish and some vegetables. Every day, the family I lived with spent a good amount of money (for them) to buy bitter tomatoes and okra to put in the rice, despite the fact that nobody liked bitter tomatoes or okra. I asked, why do you waste so much money on these vegetables that nobody eats? They told me, because we don’t want anyone to think we’re poor.

Africans are all about face and presentation, to the point of self-ruin. We’re talking about people for whom buying a couple vegetables has a huge impact on their bottom line, but they still do it. Saving money is basically impossible. I’m convinced that they have no conception of the future, aside from a vague idea that tomorrow will come. Cause and effect seemed to have no meaning. People who planned well, saved money and invested were not lauded or emulated, just dismissed as flukes or having received the blessing of Allah. Actually, Africans probably took to Islam like flies to s**t because in Islam, everything flows directly from God – it is a religion that gives people permission to believe that everything is out of their hands, which they believe anyway."

"3. A man asked me if I could give him 10 hectares of land and a diesel-electric water pump to irrigate it. This was not uncommon. The first thing people usually asked me when I told them I was an Agriculture Development person was for tractors, cars, livestock, anything. Completely shameless begging. Men in expensive silk clothes with nice black sedans would shamelessly beg for gimmiedats when they learned what I did. Anyway, I asked this particular guy what experience he had farming or gardening. He said none. I asked, then why do you want such a large scale enterprise? Why not get a small garden from the village chief and a used gas-pump to see how it goes? Maybe you’ll even earn enough money to upgrade in a year or two. He said, well, my cousin got 10 hectares and a diesel-electric pump from the government, so he was going to wait until he could get it too.

Gimmiedats are international. It’s disgusting. Every single cent of international aid is wasted on either bloodthirsty warlords, sniveling SWLP striver salaries, or gimmiedats for the underserving. In case you had any illusions, never give money to any international charity, ever. It breeds a mentality of helplessness and “mana from heaven”, not to mention an entire caste of African hustlers whose only job is to pitch their villages for various causes. The worst thing about this story? The man was completely right to not try a small scale enterprise. He’s African, they have infinite time. One day a government project will come to his village and give him his pump and his 10 hectares. He won’t do s**t with it, but he’ll proudly show off his pump and everyone in the village will respect him for his achievement of receiving some gimmiedats."

"4. During the festival of Eid al-Hada, a ram must be sacrificed because blah blah who cares. After killing and stringing the ram up into a tree for butchering, a gaggle of boys (they are always around in groups of 10-50, usually begging for presents and money because idiot white people always give it to them) rushed to the dying animal with a pair of scissors, snipped off its balls, and ran away with their prize. I asked the closest mother why, she said they’re going to grill it – the balls are a prized treat for the boys. I asked, do the girls eat it too? Of course not, she said. They would get pregnant with a goat.

Africans are dumb as shit. Basically, they never grow up. You are dealing with 200 pound children. If you go into interactions with that mindset, things go alright, but if you expect anything adult from them, you’ll be disappointed and frustrated at every turn. They believe in everything you can list – ghosts, angels, demons, curses, charms, blessings, and magic. Oh, and magic. They love it. I was party to a number of village magic battles, where charms and counter-charms were buried at people’s doorsteps, protective wards were made, and potions were snuck into tea. It’s a huge deal, and everyone pays big money (for them) to the local shamans and witch doctors to get all these magical trinkets. Yes, even in Islamic Africa, it’s just like this. African Islam is the same as South American Christianity – totally fked in the head. They are pagan savages first and moon-worshiping goatfuckers second. They just slap a varnish of Islam on it – the magic charm has a Koranic verse in it! – and go about their lives happily as before."

"5. A volunteer once fronted enough money for the farmer he lived with to buy fertilizer. They spread it together, and the yield was recorded. In total, it was 9 fold over the year prior. Instead of taking the money back for the loan, said volunteer forced the farmer to buy fertilizer for the next year, and save it. The next year came and they used it again, and again the yield was 10 fold over the first non-fertilizer year. This time, though, the volunteer had left the country. The farmer didn’t buy any fertilizer, and instead blew through the money he earned from his crop on frivolous crap and gifts to every extended family member who cast a shadow on his door. The next year his yields returned to the original level, and everyone went on with their lives as happy as before. The end.

This is my penultimate Africa story. There’s a bit more to it – the Peace Corps showed graphs and charts of this particular case as a successful intervention. I only found out about the little coda because I specifically asked what happened the next year; they didn’t decide to share that little fact in the larger meeting. It brings together everything - the waste, the stupidity, the lack of foresight, the inability to see cause and effect, the massive importance put on frivolous crap, and the way communities tear down their best members. Here’s the takeaway: nobody who wasn’t white on that farm saw the connection between the yields, the money they were making and the fertilizer. Nobody stopped to think hey, we should buy more of this.

That’s the insanity of Africa. 200 pound children, blowing huge stacks of cash on magic charms while they grind out a subsistence livelihood on the border of the desert. This is already super long, and I could really go on and on about this subject. There are more stories - the myths of the African family, more stories of faux-communalism, stories about crazy African religion and politics, and so on. The long and short of it, though, is this: they’re not terrible people, they just shouldn’t be anywhere near us. Africa is no s**t the Garden of Eden. It’s no mistake that the people living there are giant children. Despite tons of diseases and ferocious animals, they want for nothing. Trees growing fruit are everywhere. Every weed is edible. Before the Western-induced population bomb, I’m not even sure they even required agriculture to feed themselves. If we’re going to live a world where complete ethnic cleansing and colonization is off the table, just let them have their little paradise and leave us alone. They have absolutely nothing to offer us nor anything to gain by interaction with the west. They’re a people frozen in time from tens of thousands of years ago, and I have no trouble leaving them like that.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 12, 12:36pm   ↑ like (5)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

I credit Trumps comment with today's stock market action:
Dow 30
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 12, 2:02pm   ↑ like (4)   ↓ dislike (1)     quote      

At the beach in Haiti:
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 15, 7:30am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Turn West Baltimore City into an open air prison.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 15, 10:17am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Sniper says
, saying he'd even be willing to make New Jersey a "sanctuary state"

Should be fun to watch him get arrested while trying to do this.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 15, 11:30am   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (2)     quote      

  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 15, 11:31am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

HappyGilmore says
The weather probably doesn't hurt either. If I was going to be homeless, living somewhere where it's 70 every day sounds pretty appealing.

I think that one needs an actual address to collect welfare.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 15, 11:31am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

NJ hands it's Governorship over to a Tax and Spend Progresive Liberal with ZERO Political Experience

Would it be better to hand the governorship over to an experienced tax and spend liberal?
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 7:35am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

anon_08dee says
liberals would like there to be affordable housing, more jobs for those with low skills, and social programs that offer homeless better temporary/transitional housing.

Trumps trade policies will provide for more jobs in the US, drastically reducing the demand for social programs
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 8:15am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

OK, so in the future, NJ will be just like CA, except with shitty weather, correct?
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 10:06am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

Oprah's campaign slogan:
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 12:00pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

It's all LBJ's and Obama's fault!!!
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 12:09pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)     quote      

justme says
Limit the number of threads per person per day to 1. Limit the number of comments per person per thread to 5-10

That won't work.
  zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2018 Jan 16, 12:13pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (2)     quote      

This whole thread is really violating the spirit of discuss anything but the other users.