income != wealth 2
here are some numbers from the irs (indirectly) to back up my claim that treating income and wealth as interchangeable is a grievous error. over the past 20 years all percentile groups saw their incomes grow by 1% to 2% per year. that trend pretty much holds back 40 years. net worth on the other hand grew by 1% to 3%. the bottom 25% saw their income grow by 2%. great right? well, no. simultaneously, their net worth only grew by 1%. the middle class (75% to 90%, odd but true) is in a similar situation. their income also grew by 2%. but their net worth grew by 1.5%. the income of the top 10% also increased by 2%. yet their net worth increased by 3%. to interpret this, the rich are getting richer. and it's not showing up in their income. the cheat factor is something like 50%. imagine. we could increase the government's tax revenue by a *trillion* dollars simply by closing this loophole. timmer for tax man.
hrm. the purpose of the tsa pat down search is to see if i'm hiding anything under my clothes. the solution is obvious. don't wear any clothes. travel naked. that's what i always say.
b wanted carrot cake for his birthday. the beautiful and talented alisa makes a wonderful carrot cake. yum. you should be jealous. very jealous. it got blue frosting. blue is b's favorite color. i knifed a 4x8 grid into the frosting. alisa added the fountain of light with dark blue frosting. g contributed lego parts for random dungeon debris. sugar crystals made green slime in one corner. we don't have the official miniatures for whq. so the abomination stood in for a minotaur. orc swordsmen and archers came from lord of the rings. and random lead contaminated soft plastic miniatures stood in for the heroes. it was quite a cake. happy birthday kid.
there's a report floating around the internet that much of the catholic church's clergy is gay. well, there's a shock. it's a lot easier to take a vow of celibacy if you don't have the urge to fuck some hos. it'd be like w taking a holy vow to forever give up broccoli. so why is the church so homophobic? people who can't accept what they are tend to lash out at what they are. as if they need the constant strong conditioning that they are not that. and that is bad. despite what their self says. you know, if it was just a society of unhappy closet homos, i'd have no issue. the problem is, this group has a huge amount of influence. and their unhappiness is making other people unhappy. by hording wealth. by encouraging poverty and disease by prohibiting the use of condoms. sigh. timmer for pope.
I have been married to the beautiful and talented Alisa for over 17 years. Apparently, I married her when she was 12. I trust her completely. I recently shared all of my passwords with her, including the one for this blog. I also gave her permission to fix any typographical or grammatical errors that slip past me, accidentally or otherwise. Honestly, I do feel a certain amount of anxiety. I reassure myself it's natural to fear the unknown. Thinking about her and everything she does and everything she represents gives me a warm fuzzy blissful feeling. Everything will be OK.
the tsa has been in the news recently. good. it's about time people get a clue that this "security" is just theater. ie it just makes people feel safe without actually making them safe. kinda like prayer. the chances of getting cancer from the back scatter machine are about the same as the chances a terrorist blows up your plane. would you prefer to die from the disease or the cure? sheehs. some of the stories are just outrageous. i have nightmares about what if they tried this shit with my kid? gah. one morning i woke up dreaming of what might give tsa agents nightmares. bus loads of kilt wearing viagra popping scotsmen in kilts on their way to a porn convention. and not a single one of them goes through the scanner.
i think there should be a county where vaccinations are not required. we should relocate all the anti-vaxers there. and we can watch their children die. and say, i told you so. i think that's one of the problems with the anti-vax fears. yeah, there's a tiny chance that the vaccination will do something bad to you. oddly though, not the things the anti-vaxers fear - autism. weird but true. anywho, the problem is we don't see how bad these diseases are. if you've ever seen the heroism of a polio survivor and had the mental capacity to understand that this could be your kid's future, you'd be anti-anti-vax. prick your kids.
i hate microsoft. so every time i boot the computer there's a dialog box titled user account control. do you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer? to continue, type an administrator password, then click yes. problem is, there's no place to type the administrator password. and the yes button is disabled. my only options are to click the close box, click no, or ignore it. it took a bit of perseverance but google eventually provided the correct answer. i both long for and fear the day google can filter the red herring solutions to my problems. anywho. the problem showed up after i upgraded from win7 home premium to professional. or maybe it showed up after i monkeyed with control userpasswords2. dunno. don't care. the problem is the administrator account is inactive. the solution is to activate it. reboot. tap f8 until you see a menu in the dos font. boot in safe mode with a command shell. press control-alt-delete. choose switch users. choose administrator. go drink a pot of coffee. enter this command at the dos command prompt: net user administrator /active:yes. hit control-alt-delete again. reboot normally. my user account showed up no worries. and just for fun i tested uac with control passwords2. this time uac came up with text box for my password. stupid fucking thing. be aware though, the administrator account has no password. you might want to switch users to administrator and give it one. timmer for hero.
are taxes stealing? or is that noise from the machine? hrm. let's see. stealing is when i go into a store, pick up a pair of blue jeans, and leave without paying. stealing is when i cut your purse and take your cash giving you nothing in return. stealing is when the tax man takes your silver candlesticks and you get nothing in return. so yeah i guess you could call taxation theft. hrm. stealing is when you send your kids to school and refuse to pay the taxes for it. stealing is when you drive on a paved road and refuse to pay the taxes for it. stealing is when you call the cops and refuse to pay the taxes for it. stealing is when you turn on your tv and refuse to pay the taxes that paid for the infrastructure and the regulation of the industry. heh. i suppose you personally don't have a contract signed by you that says you agree to pay so many dollars for such things. you are welcome to leave the country. go live in one where there are no taxes. you'll be very happy i'm sure. with no schools, no roads, no police, and no electricity. just you and bunch of other people who think they should get everything (including what's yours) for nothing.
microsoft and i really don't see eye to eye. case in point. i find the continuous updates irritating. but i suppose, a necessary evil. so i'm inclined to put on my big boy pants and shut my pie hole. except... one of today's "important" updates was for games. wtf? yeah, i play games on this computer. but sheehs. not the crap that comes bundled with the os. i really don't need yet more ways for the bad guys to infiltrate my computer. i really don't need yet more files that have to be scanned for viruses. get a fucking clue for crying out loud. i shovel money into the microsoft truck with frightening regularity. if you're really serious about keeping my computer safe, then don't go poking holes in the defenses. don't go wearing out my hard drive with endless scans. don't run up my electric bill cause the cpu's running hot all the time. sheehs. timmer for ceo.
income != wealth
whenever i say something about taxing the rich. someone sends me a link to income tax statistics showing that the rich really are paying their fair share. poppycock. don't confuse income with wealth. wealth and income generally correlate. ie people with high incomes generally have lots of wealth. however, the converse is less true. people with lots of wealth don't necessarily have proportionally high incomes. one of the big reasons for this disparity is the way the tax laws are written. for example, i invest $10m in my portfolio. after 4 to 10 years it doubles in value. 4 years if your warren buffett. closer to 10 years for everyone else. anywho, i sell half. what's my income? joe on the street would say it's $10m less the $5m that i paid for it. so $5m, right? heh. that would be naive. according to the law, i can claim any portion of the $10m i paid for it. even all of it. my tax rate is irrelevant cause my income is $0. and now i have $10m cash with which to repeat the process. and a $10m portfolio. the defenders of this ludicrosity say i will eventually have to pay taxes on it. but i don't. i can keep deferring taxes forever. the tax bill will outlive me. cause there's no estate tax. bill gates gave a huge chunk of his wealth away to charity. pardon, to *his* charity. and since it's a charity, it doesn't pay taxes. neat huh? i should learn to say what i mean. i don't literally want to raise the current tax rate of the rich. i really want to close the loopholes that allow them to pretend they have no income.
"companies taking out 'disgrace insurance' in case their sparkling spokesman turns out to be another skirt chasing tiger woods." so are they concerned their spokes*man* is a woman with the hots for a certain golfer? or are they concerned their celebrity spokesman turns out to be promiscuous? or both? or here's a nasty thought. this ambiguous language comes directly from the insurance provider. so when the company tries to collect when their hot skirt of a spokesman jumps the tiger right there on the golf course on national tv, the insurance guys just say nope, your policy covers male celebrities who chase skirt. and vice versa of course. timmer for evil president.
so it's been uncovered recently that law enforcement in pennsylvania have been using the patriot act to spy on groups engaged in lawful political activities. and yeah, they're not mainstream political activities. but lawful none the less. all i have to say is, well duh. some of us were pretty sure this was going to happen as soon as the dumb thing was passed. okay here's the thing. we americans believe in our rights so strongly we're willing to die for them. so here we're in a situation where we have to choose between losing those precious liberties (speech, peaceably assemble, petition the government) or let them evil terrorist kill us. to paraphrase a famous american patriot. i know not what course others may take but give me liberty *and* give me an extremely remote chance of death.
we're hiring! much of your responsibilities would be to play video games all day. you'd think it would be pretty easy to hire folks by the truckload. especially since we're paying competitive salaries. but no. lotta candidates come in acting like they don't really want to get hired. some are super motived. the latter come in two flavors. people who really want to advance the state of the art of the video gaming experience. and those whose unemployment benefits have run out. it's really sad. but true. given the choice between stay at home, have sex, play games for fun - or go to work, play whatever crappy game we tell you to, and get an honest to goodness paycheck - lotta folks choose the former. at least until the the unemployment checks stop coming in. sigh. we have the same problem at the high end. but different. suppose we wanted to hire a vp. hah. good luck. there's the very rare candidate who, like the grunts, wants to change the industry. most candidates are just bored. they manage their portfolio for 15 minutes a week. and make more money than we could possibly pay them. it's crazy. but true. we as the government of the people have to stop paying people to not work. both at the bottom of the pay scale. and at the top.
mac v pc
okay so pc video cards cost about $20. and the equivalent one for the mac costs about $2k. seems like it'd be worthwhile to figure out how to use a pc video card in a mac. the issue is the rom. macs use efi. pcs don't. i have an original mac pro 1,1. i boot win7/64 via boot camp. i have a spare ati 5770 for pc. and a spare pair of 8800 gt's also for the pc. my 8800 gt for mac died. the 7300 for mac is dying. i want to find a new video card option before the 7300 keels over. i have three monitors. my first plan would be to use the 5770 to drive them all. might have to buy a widget to convert the mini display port to dvi. i can live with that. my second plan would be to put in both of the 8800's and connect them with a sli cable. yeah i know apple doesn't support that. but it might work on the pc. so what the heck. anywho. the basic idea is to flash the roms on the pc cards so they work in the mac. sounds simple. hardly. here are the tricks. first, format an internal drive for fat32. put it in your mac. download nvflash and atiflash from the internet. you will also need to find the mac equivalent rom image for the pc video card you want to use in your mac. i'm not sure about the legality of downloading them from the internet. you are on your own. you have been warned. put all the files on the fat32 drive. step two, boot dos on your mac. download an iso from the internet. i used ultimate boot cd. burn the iso to a brand new dvd. i used the standard win7 burner. discs burned with other burners failed to boot due to a checksum error. also, make sure your nvflash isn't a self extracting archive. if so either figure out how to extract it. or download one that isn't. reboot. hold down the option key. c might work too. boot the dos dvd labeled "windows". heh. that just makes me snigger. anywho, get to a dos prompt. i chose the option that said something about freedos. cd c:. cd to your exes and rom images. run the flash tool. save the current rom image. make sure you save the correct adapter if you have more than one card installed. flash your rom. atiflash was obvious. the nvflash command is nvflash -4 -5 -6 --index=1 newbits.rom. the -4 -5 -6 options mean ignore any incompatibilities. like type, sub-type, board id, etc. you know what you're doing. you made a backup of the original rom, right? reboot into windows to make sure everything is still working there. it did. i have three monitors for gaming again. yay! reboot into osx to make sure everything is now working there. and voila! you're done. except i wasn't. i think the problem is it's an original mac pro with pci 1. and the pc cards are pci 2. pci 2 cards are supposed to degrade themselves to pci 1 automatically. but that seems to fail in os x on the original mac pro. sigh.
i learned some new words recently. b is the master of jayus. he's so bad at telling jokes it's funny. sometimes the beautiful and talented alisa must seem to the boys like a kyoikumama. she does push them to academic excellence. but i wouldn't say relentlessly. i am the tartle king. i know i should introduce people. and i would. but i've forgotten their names. i would use the word ilunga to describe myself. except i'm not exactly sure how. is it a noun verb adjective adverb? hrm. i'll forgive you the first time you screw up. i'm annoyed the second time. the third strike though, you're out.
cotton v 19
i read some news that the price of cotton will be going up due to higher demand. strangely, most countries don't make clothes out of cotton. they make it out of hemp. why? it's not as high quality. but you get more product for less resources. like land water fertilizer and labor. with a little "modern" science we could husband superior strains. with a little genetic engineering we could do it a lot faster. so why don't we? well, cops can't tell the difference between hemp and marijuana. the plants are closely related. the difference is that hemp doesn't have the hallucinogens prized by stoners everywhere. kind of a bummer that prop 19 failed. legalize marijuana and we can grow hemp as a cash crop. and your kid's clothes would take a smaller bite out of your budget.
california government is in kind of an interesting state. the democrats own the governor and both houses. now, the scary thing about letting democrats run the show is the policy of tax-and-spend. or worse, borrow-and-spend. but... it takes a 2/3rds super majority to raise taxes. but only a simple 50% majority to lower them. it takes a 2/3rds super majority to borrow money. it takes a 2/3rds super majority for gullible voters to pass bond measures. which they pretty much always did no matter how badly it stank of pork. so what are we really looking at here? the democrats are going to have to do one of two things. cut spending on popular programs. and take a severe political hit. or cut faustian deals with the republicans to fund their precious programs. the republicans are owned by the super rich. who will say anything to get votes. and apparently the more ridiculous the better. a la tea party. sheehs. so i predict higher taxes for the middle class. lower taxes for the rich. deregulation of business. and pork pork pork pork pork. it'll be just like the republicans are in charge. except they won't pay the political capital. oddly, in california, it's better to be the minority party. weird.
an interesting stat surfaced recently. if you invested $100k in nasdaq at the beginning of the bush presidency, it would have been worth $64k at the end. an OUCH! sized loss. if you had invested $100k at the beginning of the obama presidency it would be worth $159k today. yet obama is branded a socialist. oh wait. imagine me waving the first two fingers of both hands. he's a "socialist". seems like we could use a little more of that kind of socialism.
for the next two years we will have a democratic president. and a republican house. the last time this happened was bill clinton. which i might remind you was one of the most prosperous and peaceful periods in recent history. maybe we can actually withdraw from these stupid and expensive wars. maybe we can bring back that old pay-as-you-go fiscal responsibility thing. that'd be nice. course bill's economy was still riding the wave of ever increasing amounts of cheap energy that started during the reagan era. that's a feature we're not likely to see again. most likely the economy will continue to stagnate. any gains we get from peace are going to be more than offset by a tighter energy supply. so i'm predicting a republican president in 2012. who is likely to also fail miserably. heh. if you think you have voter discontent now, wait 6 years.
i wish we could elect lawmakers. the next speaker of the house said it's the job of every republican to get re-elected. weird. here i thought their job was to make laws. wait. it is. is the voting populace really this disconnected? apparently. okay then. i guess they deserve to be poor.
in a democracy, voters pick the politicians. gerrymandering is when politicians pick the voters. here
's a pretty good example. i'm pretty sure this particular shape came about so the party in power could gain a seat by redrawing the district lines to include just a few more friendly voters and a few less unfriendly voters. concentrate the unfriendlies in one district. this way you can lose the popular vote. but control the house. it seems just wrong. you end up with states with a north going governor and a south going legislature. sigh. so here's my plan. i'm realistic enough to know you can't completely eliminate gerrymandering. but you should be able to minimize it. the majority party would be excluded from redefining the districts. this should keep the government from tilting north then suddenly lurching way to the south until the next lurch north. this should put the government on a more centrist even course. more in line with the populace. more representative as it were. now the details. for each district, assign a gps coordinate. each voter belongs to whichever location is closest to them. you'll get much simpler maps. and yeah, there will still be opportunity to fudge things in your favor. but the opportunity should be a lot less than with the status quo. timmer for president.
define super rich. hm... how about: the ability to spend $141 million trying to get yourself elected governor of california. i might have voted for such a person if others gave her $141 million because they believed in her platform. but when it's her own money and she has no experience with what she wants to get into. and thinks she can actually do a better job. i'm thinking hubris. i'm thinking she's going to be in way over her head. and very quickly manipulated. it's kinda moot. cause apparently a majority of californians are like minded. ie they didn't want someone so utterly incomprehensibly unlike themselves.
yay. the budget majority thing passed. some argue this is a bad thing. now 51% of the california lawmakers can tell 49% what to do. that may not be an ideal thing. but it's a hell of a lot better than letting 34% tell 66% what to do.
smaller government seems to be the current political catch phrase. and i'm all for less regulatory intrusion into my personal life. but does size matter? not really. cost matters. cost in terms of lost personal liberties. i don't use marijuana. but i'm saddened prop 19 failed. and cost in dollars. if government were free we'd be happy with big government. but it isn't free. we feel the pain in the size of the bite that comes out of our paycheck. smaller government means keep your hands the hell off my paycheck. so here's a thought. let's stop taxing people who have paychecks. let's start taxing people who have portfolios. timmer for president.
b got to wrestle his first honest to goodness wrestling match this week. it went better than expected. he works hard. nobody on the team wrestled from the bottom better than he did. he built up his base and scored some escapes. which kept the other guy busy and not scoring any points. he's just seriously inexperienced. needs to more firmly establish some of the basics. head up, hips down. it was kind of a bummer that his first opportunity came in a meet against the other best team in the area. ah well. go kid go.
the last book i read was about a king who was seriously unhappy. he didn't really want to run the kingdom. he just wanted to conquer all the other kings and be the only king. he was a pretty good conquerer. but a pretty sucky king. what he needed was a competent person to run the kingdom. course that person stabbed him in the back. and now he's a dead king. so tying these thoughts to yesterday's post. we like the political show. it's fun. it's the ultimate reality show. but jesus christ. you're giving these mud slinging power hunger camera loving freaks control over your life. how did we get in such a dumb situation? heh. better, what do we do about it? vote moderate? heh. right. name a moderate candidate. betcha can't. we need to separate the reality show from the real power. entertain us junkies with our election fix. but quietly put someone competent in charge. and and and. and i wish for the nile.
extremism should be punished. it seems kinda obvious to say it. the gazelle that taunts the lion gets eaten. the guy who invests his life savings in roncomatic plum pitters. and the guy who gives away all his stuff before the rapture. losers all. or should be. but that's not the case in american politics. the more extreme you are the better. some blame the media. but they're just doing their job. sensationalism sells. heh. calling it a liberal bias is an extreme position that just proves my point. we capitalist patriots don't really want extremists running the government. not the left nor the right. we want nice conservative sensible people making the laws. no activism whatsoever. before the internet i would have said just ban politics from television. let it play out on the radio and in the newspapers. sigh. okay plan b.
every good super hero has a catch phrase. tick - spoooon! robin - holy anamanapia batman. buzz - to infinite and beyond. i think the next time i beat the crap out of someone i'm going to say, bangarang mother fucker.