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Comment: Re:Disturbing (Score 1) 331

Florida here.

Here is a minimal sample plan for in-state Florida college (where we didn't screw things up):
Insurance - covered at the student health center (catastrophic covered by parent)
Food - $100/month, rice/beans (my budget as an adult) - $1200/year
Tuition - 39credits/year @ 212.28/cr = $8.2K/year (source:
Transportation - Bicycle, SERIOUSLY
Housing - offcampus w/shuttle @ $600/month (includes utilities and roommates, "luxury living" source: - $7.2K/year
MISC - haircuts, bike repairs, incidentals, pocket money, $100/month = $1200/year

Cost - 17.8K/year.

But how will someone ever pay for this?

Part time job at campus library at lowest-salary-university-will-pay-you. 20hours/week @ $8/hour = $8K/year.

Assuming that tuition never goes up and the student never obtains a marketable skill (dishwashing @ $10/hour, CAD drawing at $12/hour, copywriting @ $15/hour, freelance website design @ $20/hour, etc.), college costs about $10K/year, or $40K for the total package.

Note that a "student paying their own way, working their through college on minimum wage" is actually an option. Minimum wage is nearly $8/hour. 40 hours of minimum wage is $16K/year, which is just enough to cover college when considering the Earned Income Tax Credit and Making Education Pay Tax Credit.

Additionally note that no scholarships were to be had in the above calculations. Florida has a program called "Bright Futures" whereby a student with 1170 SAT score can get tuition 100% covered for all 4 years of college (cost reduced to $10K/year).

Comment: Re:America Cannot Compete (Score 2) 324

by SunTzuWarmaster (#47921239) Attached to: New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance

Certain country's tax codes are upending the world trade structure.

The way things should work: profits made in a country are taxed in that country.
The way things should not work: a company doing business abroad pays taxes both at home and abroad.
The way things break: subsidiary company makes "no profit" (no tax) because it pays hefty license fees (100% net income) to my headquarters company in Ireland. Ireland does not tax licensed technology abroad. I pay effectively no taxes (and instead pay clever tax accountants, who are cheaper).

This is an article is an attempt to remedy the situation where companies can chase low tax structure to literally any country which will offer a favorable deal. It is understood that you can't do it one at a time ("we'll just fix Ireland because they're the problem"), because there are many countries willing to offer such arrangement (Bermuda, Curacao, Panama, Iceland, etc.). This is an attempt to get to the 1st and 2nd point, while disallowing the 3rd.

Comment: Re:TFA bad at math? (Score 1) 146

by SunTzuWarmaster (#47777947) Attached to: The American Workday, By Profession

Because the graph breaks it down by occupational category, rather than by population within a category.

A friend of mine once said that it was a travesty that 25% of the vehicles on the road were SUVs. Another claimed that this was sensible, as there were four categories: cars, trucks, vans, SUVs. The second person assumed an even distribution among vehicle classes, which is obviously untrue.

You are assuming an uniform distribution of professions where none exists; there are likely more people in "management" or "sales" (45% by 0730). This offsets the numbers significantly.

Comment: Re:Classic Khan pseudoscience (Score 1) 243

by SunTzuWarmaster (#47736979) Attached to: It's Dumb To Tell Kids They're Smart

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the "growth" that they are referring to is the "growth mindset":

The short version of the "growth mindset" is: "the children who believe that their brain grows in response to effort/stimulus have a tendency to perform better at cognitive tasks". The alternative to a "growth mindset" is frequently self-defeatist ("I'm not smart enough to do math", "I'll never get it", "I already know all of the information I can and cannot handle anymore", etc.). The "growth mindset" is independent of any neuroscience, and doesn't pretend to be related.

From a recent conference: "it is actually unimportant whether the brain 'grows' as it learns more or not, the children who believe that it does learn more, quicker".

Comment: Re:I disagree (Score 2) 293

I agree with the parent poster. I feel that my voice is rarely silenced due to simple unpopularity. Browsing at -1 indicates mostly that -1 posters suck. More common than this is that my posts are average (in the noise), which is probably an accurate reflection of my posting nature (small additions filling the the corners or highlighting a previous argument).

On the moderation side, I rarely downmoderate. I downmod in one of a very few cases: poster is a jerk/troll, poster has contributed nothing, poster is provably wrong in a manner which indicates erroneous conclusions.

Comment: Re:Jewelry (Score 1) 399

by SunTzuWarmaster (#46863165) Attached to: Japanese and Swiss Watchmakers Scoff At Smartwatches

Planet Money summed this up pretty well for me:
Announcer: "Zoe, let's say I give you two investment vehicles. One is a piece of art, with a drawing on it. The other is a Government bond. Let's say they both will appreciate at the same rate, say, 3% above inflation. Which would you prefer to have?"
Zoe: "Is the Government bond pretty? Does looking at it, feeling it, or smelling it give me any form of pleasure?"
Announcer: "No, it looks, feels, and smells like a Government bond. It has a picture of an eagle on it."
Zoe: "I'm, um, going with the art."

This is a pretty simple example of why art underperforms typical investment vehicles. All things being equal, people prefer the art to the bond. That said, it drives demand for art up, and return for art down. While art may _hold_ its value (keep pace with inflation), it will not compare in its performance with similar investment vehicles (even if kept in pristine condition).

More info here:
and here:

Comment: Re:Shuffles (Score 1) 386

by SunTzuWarmaster (#46832719) Attached to: iPad Fever Is Officially Cooling

I agree that the iPod classic is a product separate from those of other categories. Additionally, I agree with your views regarding being amazed about not having large-storage HDD-based music players. However, the following situation occurred recently to me:
  - I got a new phone (replacing the 4 year old one).
  - I uploaded all of my music on my iPod (40ish Gb) to Google Music (20,000 songs for free)
  - I cached my frequently-played favorites ("Running mix", "Workout mix", "Yard Word mix") on the HD of the phone, using about 1 Gb of space
  - I stream my music collection from Google Music
  - I also have many other capabilities, such as streaming from Pandora, downloading podcasts, using car stereo BlueTooth, etc.
  - I haven't turned on my iPod since

I have 'unlimited' (5 Gb) bandwidth from my cell carrier when roaming, and truely 'unlimited' bandwidth from the places where I listen to the most music (gym Wifi, home Wifi, work wifi, girlfriend Wifi, etc.). In short, my phone has access to my entire music collection as part of its normal operation ($25/month, unlimited calls/data).

I use a Moto X phone (now), from Republic Wireless, which cost $299 (, and $25/month. It effectively replaces the functionality of my previous phone ($50/month, free phone).
An iPod Classic (40K songs) starts at $249 ( An iPod Touch (1750-7K songs) starts at $229.

iPods are products which will die.

PS - Shameless plug for a company with which I am happy. You can switch to Republic Wireless using this link for the first month free:

Comment: Re:No advocating banning guns (Score 1) 1633

by SunTzuWarmaster (#46773423) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

Not greatly, considering how many people are considered to be in the "unorganized militia" ( Short version: all men between 18 and 45 are considered part of the unorganized militia. Also, some other people (women in the national guard, etc.).

"I've seen it. It's rubbish." -- Marvin the Paranoid Android