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Comment Not what I meant at all. Anonymous changes me (Score 1) 169

"And also the way you mean it, in that you expect some kind of return for the investment of your generosity."

That's not what _I_ meant at all. While it does make sense to be friendly with our friends, when I said spending foolishly I meant things like cars.
I can buy a lot of meals for people who need it with the money I could otherwise spend on a flashier car. The flashy car losses it's shine quickly.
On another level, I take my lunch to work, rather than eating out. 270 lunches X $5 = $1,350 every year, multiply by me and my wife, that's $2,700.
Over ten years, $27,000 from lunch. Instead, I could buy someone their first starter car every year and still come out $700 ahead, just by taking
lunch with me.

Really, ANONYMOUS giving does something to me that I don't get any other way. I'd like to do that more anonymous giving.
I can't quite explain it, but I think the effect is has on me likely makes more a more successful person, certainly a happier person.

I mentioned foolish giving. By that I do not meaning giving where I'll get nothing in return. I always get something in return because
it does something to my psyche / spirit / brain that's good. I mean that just as it's foolish to rent furniture from RAC, it's foolish to
"give" by bailing that same person out of jail AGAIN, or bailing them out of whatever situation they habitually put themselves in.
Just as the rented furniture ends up going back to the store, my brother ends up going back to the jail. Much better use that money
on someone whose actions show they intend to never go back to jail again.

Giving very publicly is fun, the recognition strokes the ego. Giving anonymously WITHOUT the ego boost, remaining humble, has longer
lasting benefits. I'm reminded that I'm actually the steward of what I have. It's been trusted to me because I've made wise decisions,
worked hard, etc., so it would be irresponsible of me to hand it out to drunks who will waste it, but ultimately it's not really mine. It was
created by the creator, and when I put it use with that in mind I become closer to what I'm made to be.

* I am no saint. I give far less than I "should", far less than many people do. I'm merely speaking of what happens _when_ I give in different ways.

Comment this. employees prefer bonuses to unexpected cuts (Score 1) 169

I do bonuses when the company can afford it for just that reason. Employees want a stable, guaranteed pay check. If they didn't, they'd be entrepreneurs. It would be cruel to give them a raise and have to take it be back six months later. Most would much rather have stable pay that won't be cut plus a bonus once a year than have their pay go up and down every month depending on company financials.

Comment I beg to differ. Most of my money is from being (Score 2, Insightful) 169

There are a few really good reasons not to do business with me, but I've always had as many clients as I can handle. Most of my money (over a million dollars) has come from people who choose to do business with me BECAUSE of what kind of person I am.

When they see me being generous with my time and money, they know I'm the type of person they want to do a deal with.

Secondly, without a generous and grateful spirit, you can have $200 million and not be nearly as rich as someone with a spirit of gratitude and generosity who earns 1/10th as much.

Sure, it's POSSIBLE to get a lot of money by being obsessed with money. Some people do that. It's EASIER to get rich by being of service, solving people's problems. Who would you rather buy from, someone who is obsessed with getting your money, or the other guy who is trying to help you solve your problem? If you were really good at what you do, which of those people would you choose to work for?

You don't get rich spending money FOOLISHLY. Every rich person I know is generous, applying the same wisdom to their giving that they apply to their business. (Disclaimer - generous people are over represented in the list of people I know because I don't hang out with, or do business with, scumbags.)

Comment They are warrantless- DEA agents subpoena AT&T (Score 1) 141

From the article:

"It is queried for phone numbers of interest mainly using what are called “administrative subpoenas,” those issued not by a grand jury or a judge but by a federal agency, in this case the D.E.A."

So the DEA agents themselves decide to have AT&T pull your phone records.

Comment sounds pretty tough (Score 1) 459

That sounds like it's pretty darn challenging. I feel for you.

You have a list of things you can't do. It would be nice to see a list of what you're good at, but whatever. It seems pretty obvious that someone who is deaf isn't going to be a composer or a talk show host. Other things are better suited to their abilities. Beethoven went right ahead and became one of the best composers who ever lived. He couldn't hear the music he was composing, but he went right ahead and did it anyway. The most successful talk radio host in America is 90% deaf. He just keeps on using his talent for being obnoxious on the air anyway.

Ask Temple Granden about disabilities and bigotry.
If you haven't seen the biopic about her, please do.
She, like you, had some really good, perfectly valid excuses. The thing about valid excuses is that they're still excuses, not solutions.

Comment sounds like you're on a good track (Score 2) 459

It sounds like you're doing the things that will get you where you want to be, the same things my parents did.

I never said anyone would be on a Lear jet at 26. I said that working hard, no matter what, and education will get you far and that's what you're doing. I bet you'll really enjoy the payoff in a few years if you stick to it. You've even recognized that the consumer debt is something you want to avoid as much as possible.

I actually did talk about myself a couple of times in this thread. The short version is that when I started college at 16, did dumb things and ended up living under a tarp behind KMart, then worked hard, stopped doing some of the dumb, and got a place and built a business. Sold the business, didn't use the money to finish school and that was dumb. Struggled with no degree, started wising up, bought a house, took a great class on money, now finishing school twenty years after I started.

Comment 90% of millionaires (Score 1) 459

> The simple fact of the matter is that the minimum wage earner who squirrels away a little bit of money into an investment account every day would be much better served by searching for a job that pays twice as much. It's frankly a lot more realistic than gradually earning interest on a pittance invested in the stock market.

90% of millionaires earned less than $100K from their jobs. They got a million dollars by saving slowly over time and letting investment do it's thing (growth).

That said, yes a "minimum wage earner" would be better served by focusing on graduating high school. Their next investment should be a low-cost college or excellent trade school. THEN it's time to start docking away for retirement.

Graduated high school and still making minimum wage? A wise investment might be chemical dependency treatment or otherwise dealing with their specific problem.

That's the fact. Sorry if it doesn't fit with some politically

Comment should be a beacon of freedom, least prejudice (Score 1) 986

> or should be - "the best" for some reason

Most nations came to be as ethnic or sometimes religious groups developed fixed borders. One big group just had different ancestors than another. No real national purpose, just their group has always been seperate from our group.

After Europeans fled to America to escape abusive monarchs and religious persecution, the founding fathers declared the US would become a seperate nation FOR THE PURPOSE OF democratic self-government by a free people. The nation was started BECAUSE the English king was violating their rights, so they set out to form a new republic dedicated to the protection of freedom and liberty.

That the US has failed so much in this IS special because we've failed in our purpose. The UK has SUBJECTS, the US is supposed to have citizens. It's somewhat expected for the crown to surveil it's subjects. The US Constitution says that shall not happen here. So it IS "supposed to be" special in that way - that our supreme law says our government cannot do what other governments do.

Obviously in many ways we've failed to be the special country we were intended to be.

Comment has never lost = not gambling (Score 1) 459

I guess you missed the part "over any 20 year period". Since the Dow was first calculated in the 1800s, noone has ever held it for 20 years and lost money.
It's never happened. Same with the NASDAQ composite. Nobody has ever put their retirement or college money in a major index for 20 and not made just about as much as they'd expect.

The same can be said of any 10 year period, except the period 2000 - 2010 and if you pick specific dates at the great depression.

I suppose there COULD be a losing 20-year period, even though it's never happened before. Eating a banana could kill you by choking too. You wouldn't call eating a banana "gambling". Bananas HAVE killed people, "buy diversity and hold for 20 years" has never lost for anyone, making it safer than bananas.

Sure you CAN gamble with the stock market, just as you can gamble with a Coke bottle, but you need not. Buy broad and hold long term works every single time.
Kind of boring, yes, a boring way to get rich slow.

Comment hope you love it, 'cause that's all wrong (Score 1) 459

FYI my dad WAS one of those veterans. Not a "former vet" as you said - there's nothing former about being a Vietnam vet.

> You didn't have as much as the other people in school did because of your toilet-scrubbing father, and you felt ashamed because of it. So you vowed you'd to anything you could to "make it". You've got a big chip on your shoulder.

You mean when I was seven, flying around on the corporate jet?!?!? You're far too busy arguing your preconceived notions based on political idealogy to read anything I'm writing, aren't you? Obama doesn't care about your well being. He and Jon Stewart feed you whatever line serves their interests. Here we're talking about you're real life. Stop parroting Stewart long enough to read what I'm saying.

You truth is, we all get some good hands and some bad hands. We get thousands of cards in our life, and make thousands of decisions. I got birth defects requiring dozens of surgeries, a 100% rate of alcoholism in the family, and an extremely high IQ. Those I was dealt and a thousand more, good and bad. During the years I make good decisions, I prosper and have much to give. During the years I do dumb things, short sighted, lazy and selfish things, I do not prosper.

Invite a professional poker player over. You might win the first pot; one pot just depends on the cards. Play against a pro for six hours and they'll take all your chips. Why? Because they make their good cards count and don't use the bad ones as excuses.

Comment WAY back woods, no toothbrushes (Score 1) 459

He grew up WAY back woods, as in he'd never heard of a toothbrush until he was seven years old and the floor of his parents house was dirt.

He got out of there by taking the bus. He went to Austin, where he worked as a janitor. Ghetto? Maybe. He worked overtime and moved. He kept working overtime and moving. When I was seven years old, we had Easter at the country club.

It woils be another 25 years before I understood HOW he ended up at the country club, with me doing a lot of short-sighted, dumb, and lazy stuff to make myself poor. Sometimes bringing in good money for short periods, but still doing poor things. For example, at 25 I didn't have a high school diploma. I sold a business for $100K and DIDN'T use the money to go to school, so four years later I was poor again, evicted from my rented house. My dad didn't do dumb like that, he did whatever was necessary to get an education.

Comment the true role of luck (Score 1) 459

Yes, my dad was in the right place at the right time .

If you've survived to adulthood, you proably realize that you jump off enough buildings, you'lo eventually get seriously hurt. It might happen on the first building, it might happen on the tenth. That's luck.

Everyday we decide whether to hit the snooze button or get up and get going, whether to iron our shirt or wear something with a few wrinkles. We choose to leave for work 10 minutes early or five minutes late. Thousands and thousands of good choices over the years created thousands and thousands of opportunities for luck to shine. I have made thousands of decisions, like not brushing my teeth some nights, that made it much harder to get lucky.

My dad was in the right place at the right time because he made a habit of being in the right place all the time, all day every day until the right time came.

When you work really hard both on today's work AND on becoming better prepared for five years from now, such as education, some people are going to want to hire you. Whether my dad got promoted on Monday or on Friday was luck, but he did promotion worthy things everyday. It was luck whether he got hired by company A or company B. He treated the people in both companies extremely well, so SOMEONE was going to want him working with them. That's luck - do you get hurt jumping off this building or that one, does the inevitable happen today or tomorrow.

Dyson came up with just the right vacuum design. After building and testing over a THOUSAND prototypes, he got it right and now he's rich. That tends to happen when you keep trying over a thousand times - eventually you hit it. Some call that luck. Dyson calls it hard fucking work. Since Dyson's way of thinking about it WORKS, I think I'll listen to him.

Comment wouldn't you love to be wrong (Score 2) 459

my dad worked overtime scrubbing toilets while going to college. that shows his dedication to hard work and learning. he was the kind of guy you want on your team. Most Americans would choose unemployment before they would scrub toilets. About 15% of Americans don't work. They "can't" find a job, or "can't" work because they are "disabled", though they can still build themselves a new deck. So they sour around complaining that they're not lucky. Guess how often my dad the janitor couldn't find a job, no job at all?

You have a very hard choice to make. So long as your life is the result of luck, or of what the illuminati decide or whatever, you have an excuse, but you're SCREWED. You can't change THEM. The moment you decide that your life is of your own making, you can have any life you want, but you're accepting your responsibility to.

I prefer a solution rather than an excuse .

Comment because 8.5% - inflation - conservative estimate (Score 2) 459

Over the last 80 years or so, and over any 20 year period, the market has averaged about 8.5%. That's what you'd expect from a boring old index mutual fund. Subtract inflation and that leaves about 4%. Though it'll be close to 4% / year for any 20 year period, the period that matters to you may be a particularly bad one, so figure 3% to be on the safe side. (Or equaliventally use a hedge or other guarantee to lock in 3%).

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