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Comment Re:Deliberately missing the forest for the trees (Score 1) 358

Oh, I got your point, but here's the thing: the people who live there don't think there are problems. It's not for me, I don't even like visiting my friends who live there, but they don't see the problems the way you or I might. I suppose that makes them... well... not problems, since the people there like the situation and the people who don't like it don't have to live there.

My point, which you clearly missed, is that it is very short-sighted and ignorant to call someone stupid for their preference in living conditions. Perhaps they simply have different priorities than you? I tend to think if it similar to how I wouldn't call someone who prefers Clover brewed coffee stupid for going through that complicated brew process (or paying someone to do it for them) just because I, personally, think it's a complicated waste of time on top of tasting awful. It's what they like and there's no other way to get it.

Is it possible to live better for a fraction of the cost of living in San Francisco? Well, it is certainly possible to live for a fraction of the cost; however, "better" is subjective. you and I may agree that life outside of that particular city is "better", but there are many who do not. Clearly, there are more who believe life is better there than there are places for them to live there. The smart ones figure out how to make it happen.

Comment Re:Deliberately missing the forest for the trees (Score 1) 358

they don't insist that their morning lattes come from the same block they live on

Actually, insisting that your morning latte comes from the same block you live on can be very smart, if you do it right. After all, the Keurig in my kitchen on the same block I live on.

Would a drip brew be even smarter? Perhaps, if I were brewing more than one cup at a time. When I need to use enough grounds to brew a full pot just so the water doesn't bypass them, and I'm only interested in a single cup (or maybe two), the Keurig actually comes out ahead, even with the "expensive" K-cups. It's even farther ahead with reusable K-cups, as I need use only one Tbsp of grounds per cup and there is no water waste; my previous 8-cup drip needed 12Tbsp to brew 8 passable cups and water would simply bypass the grounds, resulting in a weak brew if you used less than 6Tbsp, which meant using enough coffee to brew 4 cups at a minimum, even if I only wanted one or two. Rather, it meant using enough coffee to brew 6 cups in my Keurig if I wanted anywhere between 1 and 4 cups, or enough to brew 12 cups in my Keurig if I wanted 8.

But yes, circling back around, leaving my block (let alone my house) to get a latte seems brilliant.

Comment Re:Security expert? (Score 4, Insightful) 331

No, you actually do have an obligation to not be naive and pretend crime can't happen.

That's not quite the same as saying dressing a certain way makes sexual assault not a crime; in fact, it states quite the opposite! Read the statement again, with your head located outside your rectum. When a rapist rapes, it is the rapists fault, as the rapist should not rape; when a rapist rapes YOU, however, you must ask yourself why that rapist (who would have raped anyway and is still full at fault for the actual rape) chose you and not someone else.

Is it okay for a rapist to rape you if you dress a certain way? Oh hell no, and nobody said it was. But, just knowing that the rapist is there and that the rapist will rape, regardless of you, you have a responsibility to acknowledge that fact and make yourself less of a target. Will that prevent the rape? No, because, and I'll repeat this again so you can't get confused and think I'm victim blaming, the rape is the rapist's fault. What it will prevent is your rape.

Now, let's apply that logic to a less sensitive subject so you can see how things work in the real world. If you, knowing that people steal shit from cars, leave a laptop sitting on the passenger seat of your unlocked car over night and it gets stolen, it is the thief's fault a laptop was stolen, but it is your fault it was your laptop that was stolen.

How does this work? It's quite simple, really.

The thief is going to steal a laptop, that is a decision the thief made and the thief is completely responsible for that decision. Neither you, nor me, nor the police, nor the thief's parents, nor anyone else holds any responsibility for that decision. However, you know that there exist people who make such decisions and it is up to you to protect yourself from them. If you do not, that is a decision you made and you are completely responsible for that decision. Neither the thief, nor me, nor the police, nor your parents, nor anyone else holds any responsibility for that decision.

If you didn't leave the laptop in plain view, would a laptop still have been stolen? Yes, because the thief decided they were going to steal a laptop. Wold it have been yours? No, because you decided not to allow it to happen.

As a victim of both theft and rape (among other various crimes) in my younger, more naive, years, I quickly developed an understanding of this concept. Perhaps not quickly enough, but I did develop it, nonetheless, where you (and many others) still seem to have not figured it out.

Is it my fault my rape occurred? No, but it is my fault I was chosen over someone else. Is it my fault an MP3 player was stolen from me? No, but it is my fault I left it unattended so that it may be stolen. Is it my fault I was robbed at gunpoint twice? No but, in both cases, it is my fault I was unarmed and alone in a high-crime area late at night.

Should I have been able to trust my rapist not to rape me? Should I have been able to leave my MP3 player (back when those were a new thing, mind you) at my desk for 5 minutes? Should I have been able to safely walk around, alone and unarmed, at night? In an ideal world, yes.

We, however, do not live in an ideal world, and you're not doing yourself, or anyone else, any favors by ignoring that fact while you insist that we should.

One thing we agree on, though, is that we should live in an ideal world. Our main point of contention is how to reconcile the fact that we do not. My belief is that we should not let ourselves be attractive victims to the crimes we know will be committed anyway. You seem to believe the exact opposite, for which I suppose I should thank you, as you make it that much easier to do what I believe is right when you set the bar so low for criminals.

You can have the crime and victimhoood, I've been done with it for over a decade.

Comment Re:Good post, I'd mod you up if I had points (Score 1) 495

You're literally advocating for socialism.

Actually... The subsidies we currently have are socialist. Likewise the public option.

Mind you, I supported the ACA as Obama drafted it, when it included the public option. I also believe he should not have signed it as it returned to his desk.

Perhaps, if you'd address the first part of my post, the real point I was making, which was made in the first paragraph, you'd understand what I'm actually advocating for. Rather, you chose to cherry-pick a part of my post which appears to support your position only when taken out of context; then, you go ahead and completely mis-state your own argument on top of it.

Bravo. I now get to profit by selling popcorn to the audience ahead of the argument I'm sure you're gearing up for.

Comment Re:way too generous (Score 3, Insightful) 495

Part of me wants to think that Trump is purposely setting himself up to fail. Why would he do this? Because if he, with all of his money and influence, can fail, maybe we as a nation will see that money does not, and should not, equal "right", and will finally vote for change.

Of course, then the rational side of me speaks up to remind that this would be the most un-Trump thing ever and that he's going to fail despite his best efforts. We're fucked.

Comment Re:Or it could be globalism (Score 3, Interesting) 495

Meanwhile, I wasn't afforded the opportunity to put my life in the line for my country. Why? An ADHD (mis)diagnosis when I was 11. Why? Because any kid who's not doing their schoolwork must just not be paying attention; fuck the fact that I wasn't doing it as the year went by because I worked through all of my courses in the first couple months of the school year. It's not possibly anything to do with the fact that I was so focused, driven, and intelligent that I had already done the work by the time it was assigned and, instead, chose to occupy myself furthering my learning beyond where the school system wanted me to be at that point. No, the boomers in charge couldn't be assed to pay attention to what was really going on and, instead, labeled me as unable to focus, and lacking drive, though they did acknowledge my advanced intellignece.

Why? Because taking opportunities away from me and filing me away as a problem was easier than promoting my abilities.

And here's where I differ from most who shared my experience: I fought it. I took back the opportunities that were taken from me. At least, as much as possible; I still wasn't allowed to serve my country the way I wanted, despite being fully qualified to do so.

Comment Re:Or it could be globalism (Score 2) 495

Right. I seem to recall, as a child, having a 4% interest rate on my savings account. Maybe that was a CD, I don't fully recall at this point, but what I do know is that those rates are a thing of the past. Gone are the days of putting $500 (what I had saved by age 9) into a CD and having $520 to roll over a year later. Now? The best I can find leaves me rolling over a balance of $1042.90 after 3 years on a $1000 minimum deposit. That's $507.50 on $500 after the first year, a 62.5% reduction in earning potential.

But no, millenials have all the same opportunities today as their parents did 30 years ago, what with interest rates not pacing inflation so things we save for end up costing more than if we buy them today. How? Because the $40,000 car we start saving for today at 1.41% APY is gonna be a $24,000 car in 5 years (assuming the 1.7% inflation rate doesn't increase, which has been the trend) by the time we've saved up the $44,000. We'll be a few hundred short by the time we save up the additional $4,000 but, after 7 years, we can finally buy our $45,000 car. Contrast that with the $13,000 price tag our parents had on the same class of car, coupled with interest rates nearer to 4% and inflation nearer to 3.8% and, well, you can already see the interest rates outpaced inflation 31 years ago (I would have said 30 years, but inflation was only 1.1% in 1986 and I'm trying to be fair to my parents), and that's before you consider that, without a degree, the average salary is the same $36,000 today as it was back then, no adjustment for inflation so that $36,000 only goes about half as far after 31 years of inflation. No, really, go look up the data and do the math, we're up 44.519% over 1985 prices.

Anyway, since our parents could stretch the same $36,000 twice as far, they could also save twice as much each year for a car that cost less than 1/3 as much meaning that, even without interest, they could save for their $13,000 car in less than 2 years, at which point they'd have saved $16,000 for a car that would then cost $14,000. Again, before interest. With interest, they'd have closer to $17,000 in the bank, so they could not only afford the car, but also all the options and maybe take their folks out to a nice dinner the night they bought it. And that in less than 1/3 of the time we millenials could do the same.

So, that's assuming no college education. What about that college degree? Well, according to the data at hand, the median wage for someone with a college degree in the 1908's (regardless of debt - take the average of those numbers) falls just shy of $72,000. Today? Just over $56,300. Remember that $72,000 today would stretch about half as far as it did back then. $56,300? That goes about 40% as far as the $72,000 of 30 years ago. That's right, college educated millenials are worth about 40% as much as their college educated parents; that's worse than those without a degree. Sure, they can save up for that car in 5 years instead of 7, but that sure as fuck ain't no 2 years, and doesn't include all the extras, or dinner for Mom and Pop.

Yeah, we have all the opportunities our parents had. For sure.

I'm just happy I was able to position myself, without a degree, to make twice what my dad did with one, so I can continue almost living the same life he did earning $50k before he had me. I also realize that I possess exceptional intelligence (top 5%) and a very strong drive for success; I can't imagine the average millenial, even college educated, even driven, having what I have today, and the numbers support that. I know a lot of people in my age group who are equally successful, no special snowflake here, but they're all of similar intelligence and drive; the other 95% aren't going to achieve what I have.

That's depressing, because I haven't achieved anything of note.

Comment Re:Good post, I'd mod you up if I had points (Score 1) 495

and insurance companies charging whatever the hell they want

Well, TBH, insurance was cheaper before the ACA, so that wouldn't be so bad. When I say cheaper, I mean I now pay more for barely-there coverage than I was paying for a no-deductible, no-copay plan pre-ACA and, while the best plan I can get costs nearly 4x as much as I was paying previously, I get to choose between a $2600/yr deductible or a 10% copay at that level. I can't get what I had at any price, so I can't even tell you how much more expensive it is; we'll say 5x, though, if you count the deductible simply as additional premium.

Sure, if you're poor enough that you qualify for subsidies, it's "cheaper", but the insurance companies are still charging more, even at those levels; taxpayers are simply picking up the tab.

The ACA would be great if, instead of subsidies for the lower classes, it set pricing limits on insurance and, in order to make those realistic, the procedures covered by said insurance. If that turned out to not be enough to make health care affordable (you know, actually lowering the real costs of a thing is usually a much more effective methodof making that thing affordable than simply shifting those costs to a different line item on the same invoice), we could still offer subsidies; and much smaller ones, at that.

Instead, what we got is the poor paying out of pocket*, the middle class paying full price for the coverage the poor get at a discount and still not being able to afford the deductible after the premiums, and the rich paying out of pocket as they always have, while Congress is exempt from all of it.

* Or, rather, failing to pay the $6300 deductible and $75 copay on top of whatever amount of premiums they also can't afford, effectively changing nothing as they can't afford to use the insurance they already couldn't afford to pay for. Remember, the subsidies only cover premiums, not deductible or copay amounts, and the largest subsidies only mostly cover the cheapest plans. For example, the $6300 deductible + $75 copay plan I found through Kaiser, literally the cheapest plan I could find, costs $239.14/mo, or 70 cents/mo with the largest possible subsidy in my state (if you make enough to qualify for a larger subsidy, the state already has programs that fully cover you). For reference, that is the state of California, where someone earning $20,000/yr and paying 70 cents per month for insurance won't be able to afford a single $75 copay, let alone the $6300 he must pony up before that $75 copay even applies. Of course, the same can be said in Ohio, where someone earning $20,000/yr and paying 70 cents per month for insurance may be able to afford a $75 copay, but that is rendered totally irrelevant by the $6300 deductible reducing their $17000 net income to $10700, an amount they simply won't get by on.

Llke you, I thought the ACA would be a good thing. Unlike you, I quickly realized it is not.

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