comments by taketheplunge

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Tue, 18 Feb 2014, 6:37am PST   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Share   Quote   Comment 1

tts says

You can be totally mentally and physically fit and still end up poor if your economy is busted.

Economy doesn't look busted to me. Looks like average wage went up 7%. Robert Reich's graph should go into the next edition of "How to Lie with Statistics" if there is a next edition.

First flaw in graph is no labels in the Y-axis.

Second flaw is no information about non-US wages. Non-US wages went up with globalization. So we are missing a bunch of wage growth. I'll bet extremely poor parts or China had percentage gains that blow away the productivity gains. This should be obvious when you are dealing with a small base.

Third flaw is why is he only going back to 1947? Quick search on Google shows many papers about productivity in the 19th century. But including that data might complicate the story he's trying to sell.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Wed, 3 Apr 2013, 1:46am PDT   Like (1)   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 2

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Tue, 29 Jan 2013, 12:11am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 3

I didn't realize Apple was launching an 128GB iPhone, but that's great news. I would eventually like to have all of my music, podcasts, educational seminars on my phone with me without running into my carrier's bandwidth caps. One more step in doubling flash memory might not be that innovative, but it goes one more step to solving problems I'm having with storage.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Wed, 28 Nov 2012, 4:09am PST   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 4

I personally find the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) to be the worst tax. Yes, I realize that it's mostly paid by wealthier tax payers, but the reason I dislike it so much is the way it can work out in practice for the less affluent. If one receives stock options that have large gains at the time they are exercised, there can be a large tax liability. Then if the stock crashes before the stock is sold, there may be little to no value in the stock to pay the tax on it.

During the Dot-Com boom, some people had stock options that had become worth millions at the time the stock was exercised. Then the stock plummeted and often, the company filed for bankruptcy making the stock worthless. But because there was a big paper gain on the stock at the time of exercise, there was a huge AMT tax liability.

Some people not only lost the entire value of the stock that they had purchased, but they also had millions of dollars of tax liability for a worthless stock that they still had to pay. The AMT drove people to bankruptcy.

With capital gain taxes, there at least is a gain that can be used to pay the taxes. (I realize inflation might make this gain not an true economic gain.) Unfortunately, the AMT applies to stock options that have theoretical gain, that may never have been realized.

People often times work for stat-ups that have below market base pay but generous stock options to make taking the risk worthwhile. The AMT too often is devastating.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 19 Oct 2012, 4:31am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 5

I don't own a house or condom but might want one at the right price. If Wall Street crowds me out, maybe it's for the best. Maybe all that debt would be a bad thing. Maybe it's good to rent.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Mon, 24 Sep 2012, 12:51am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 6

I hear you Patrick on these issues. Concerning the new adapter, rather than being mad about Apple changing to this new "Lightning" interface now, I'm mad at Apple for not inventing the Lightning interface back in 2003. I think this new connector has many advantages. And also, the people who bought first generation iPods got screwed in 2002 and 2003 when Apple switched from a FireWire-based connector to a USB-based connector. I still have my iPod FireWire sync cable in a drawer somewhere.

But if we can be angry at Apple for having a proprietary cable that keeps us locked in, we can also be angry at the rest of the cell phone industry for settling on miniUSB, since it has many weaknesses. For example if you want an Android phone with HDMI out, you need a separate port for that since miniUSB can't handle that. Apple, on the other hand, is releasing an HDMI adapter for Lightning.

And the CE industry took so long to develop PDMI, which is open, that it became obsolete before it got adopted by any company shipping phones in high volumes.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Wed, 19 Sep 2012, 5:29am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 7

Thanks. I still want to read the Trulia report later to see what kind of optimistic assumptions they must have been using.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Sat, 15 Sep 2012, 2:22am PDT   Like   Dislike (1)     Share   Quote   Comment 8

I'm no Romney fan, but maybe, if we keep inflating the debt away the debt, $200,000 - $250,000 household income *will* be middle income soon enough. Can we accept that possibility and all get along?

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 14 Sep 2012, 3:38pm PDT   Like (1)   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 9

I ordered my copy today. I can't wait to read it.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Thu, 13 Sep 2012, 1:00pm PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 10

Kindle has added a lending library for Prime subscribers.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Thu, 13 Sep 2012, 8:42am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 11

I imagine at the dawn of humanity, the income gap was non-existent. But would life be better then? In my opinion, no. I'd rather be in the bottom quintile of income distribution now than the top quintile 2,500 years ago no matter what the gap is now or was then. Much more important than the income and wealth gaps is the absolute quality of life. I imagine that I'd prefer to be the bottom quintile of income in wealth 10,000 years from now than the highest quintile today. The gap is often the focus of the media. I think more attention should be paid to absolute lifestyle and not the gap.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Thu, 13 Sep 2012, 8:00am PDT   Like (1)   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 12

Sounds like Operation Twist wasn't enough. Bernake has followed that up with his masterstroke, Operation Screw.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Tue, 11 Sep 2012, 3:55am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 13

That's it? The gap is way smaller than I suspected.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Thu, 6 Sep 2012, 7:48am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 14

I rent in San Francisco. I have a difficult time finding a place that is comparable to my apartment. To make a good comparison, it should be a similar space in the same neighborhood. I can't find a match.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Wed, 5 Sep 2012, 4:35am PDT   Like (1)   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 15

I work 6 days a week and sometimes 7. It's fun. Not sure I see a problem there.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 31 Aug 2012, 1:50am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 16

Hopefully whomever is the next president can help encourage Congress to pass a competing currency bill. It would be nice to be able to buy nominations with a strong currency. Inflation makes these things very expensive.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 24 Aug 2012, 9:34am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 17

rooemoore says

What, you want a pansy like Romney for president?

I consider is very wimpy not to have the guts to use proper due process. Skimping on due process like Obama and Bush before him is not to be admired. It's thuggish. If Romney behaved similarly, he would be similarly bad.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 24 Aug 2012, 7:53am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 18

rooemoore says

That's what makes him cool...

I don't think it's cool. So we disagree on that point.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Fri, 24 Aug 2012, 7:42am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 19

bgamall4 says

I logically proved that the threat of Romney and the Neocons could put the world in danger. If that is an accepted assumption, then the libertarians have only one choice, Obama.

I think Obama puts the World in danger too. He even assassinates American citizens without a trial or even a charge, not to mention citizens of other countries.

taketheplunge   befriend (0)   ignore (0)   Mon, 30 Jul 2012, 4:00am PDT   Like   Dislike     Share   Quote   Comment 20

How do you know?


I haven't read any news reports that answer that question. I understand that theater chain in question has a rule against fire arms, so even if concealed carry (not sure about Colorado gun laws) were legal, guns are forbidden by the chain. The people who follow the rules and policies set by the business will be defenseless against someone who disregards those same policies. So full legalization of any type of guns won't help unless the businesses change their own policies.

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