Thursday, June 19, 2008

Official Endorsement: The Led Zeppelin Video Channel on YouTube

You can access the channel here for over 70 more Zeppelin videos, like this Japanese promo for the first album, interviews and so many awesome live clips from the '70s your face will definitely melt off.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Banking Bucks with Barack

One of the things my republican ancestry is afraid of vis a vis Obama, is his stance on raising taxes, principally those that would affect the stock dividends which grease the wheels of the babyboomer easy life parade.

Not that I am insensitive to such problems, but let's consider the bottom line from the younger perspective: My investments won't be appreciating this year, the last under Bush, so what is there to tax? I'd gladly pay more tax, any tax, if the economy was in a better state to make me some solid returns.

And I think the patriarchs would have to agree that there's a strong possibility that better leadership would produce better economic performance and higher investment returns. And hopefully these returns would be enough to offset the increased taxes when you're looking at your absolute net dollar amounts.

Here's some simple math to illustrate the principle:
$100 at 30% tax > $50 at 0% tax

What we see is that there's a balance. At some level of performance, we'd be worse off, at some level we'd be equal, and at a third we'd be making out like bandits, counting our money sipping boat drinks and listening to Earth, Wind & Fire. I don't think Bush had is going in that direction, in fact I'd argue just the opposite.

Which is why I'm ready to put a little money down for Obama.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I Only Thought I Had Real Problems

Nobody likes a complainer. Least of all, angry US economy-hating God.

A day after I complain about the personal finance straits I'm in (which I brought on myself, no doubt) and look what happens:

That's not good. I should have kept my big mouth shut.

On the plus side, I have managed to curb spending somewhat this week. To compensate for my wife flying solo in New York with the credit card, I'm taking an approach that is monk-like in more ways than one, subsisting on a diet of water, available vegetables and condiments eaten alone in the dark.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Summer Travel Blues

I've had a bad two week spell where dollars have just been flying out the door. Almost none of them have been going towards fun or savings, so I'm afraid to check the bank account, knowing that it won't stack up to the American Express bill, and for the time am simply hiding my head under the sand like a dumb ostrich.

Most of my money was earmarked by friends and family long before I earned it, going mainly towards mandatory travel for weddings, reunions, etc. The current count: six airplane tickets and four hotel stays paid for in the last fortnight. Not to sound glib or unappreciative (I'm glad to have family and friends) but ugh.

Worse yet, with fuel costs and bad corporate behavior by the travel industry writ large (it's not just the airlines anymore) there is a nary a deal to be had. Try finding a hotel room (one you'd actually like to stay in) in New York for less than $400 a night.

Now try finding a plane ticket for less than $500. You're fucked amigo.

When I get back home after the 4th of July, I am spending the rest of the summer hanging onto dolla dolla bills (yo), with which I'll relax in a hammock and watch grass grow for cheap entertainment. I'm not worrying about my car, or any more personal airplane travel until after the vernal equinox.

I filled up my Subaru the other day at $4.35/gallon and it cost me over $60. I read that in San Diego people are driving down old Mexico way to buy their gasoline. Pretty soon life in America will only be affordable for millionaires, won't that suck.

On the plus side, I did have goat for dinner on Sunday night. Scarcity and inflation have long been the traditional drivers of expansively adventurous diets.