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Generic Confusion

When you leave, my blog just fades to grey
Nu ma nu ma iei, nu ma nu ma nu ma iei

News? Check. Politics? Check. Music? Check. Random thoughts about life? Check. Readership? Ummm.... let me get back to you on that. Updated when I feel like I have something to say, and remember to post it.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Why Generation Y is broke

Because they're idiots, if this article is anything near reality.

The subject of the article (actually a member of Generation X) lived beyond her means.

When Wallace graduated with a student-loan debt of $60,000, she found herself overwhelmed to the point of financial paralysis. She tore through a $5,000 loan from her dad as bills stacked up. She had no idea where her money was going -- despite making what she defines as a good salary. The sense of powerlessness crippled her.

When friends recommended she hire an accountant, Wallace packed a FedEx box with bills, receipts and mail and sent it off.

"He wrote me a letter that said, 'You've got to get your life together! Most of these bills aren't even open.' It was a really humbling thing," Wallace says. "But the next time, all my receipts were on a spreadsheet. No one had ever taught me to make a budget or balance a checkbook."

Even if you've never sat down and created a budget, you should remember how to add and subtract. Count your sources of income: probably two or three paychecks. Count your sources of outgo: rent, car payment, student loans, credit card bill, electricity, gas, water, phone, cable, Internet. Look at the credit card bill, and split that into food, entertainment, and the like. Pay attention to how much cash you spend, and where you spend it. Add and subtract, and it should be obvious whether or not you're living within your means.

Now, I can afford to not have a formal budget and deal with bills once a month, as they're currently all automatically deducted from my bank account, and I don't constantly spend in excess of my monthly income. But most recent college graduates can't, and shouldn't, guess their way through the world of adult personal finance.

(Via Instapundit)


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Good news for Indiana voters

Breaking news from the U.S. Supreme Court: Indiana's tough voter ID law stands.

"Indiana won the national battle for voter protection today," Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita said. "Across the country, leaders are thanking Hoosiers for raising the bar and protecting voters and improving the integrity of the election process."

A significant number of Hoosiers live in the suburbs of Chicago, and are painfully aware of the wicked politics that infest the city that birthed Barack Obama's political career. Every false vote cancels a legitimate vote. Do you want your vote to be cancelled?

John Fund comments in the Wall Street Journal:

In ruling on the constitutionality of Indiana's voter ID law – the toughest in the nation – the Supreme Court had to deal with the claim that such laws demanded the strictest of scrutiny by courts, because they could disenfranchise voters. All nine Justices rejected that argument.

Even Justice Stephen Breyer, one of the three dissenters who would have overturned the Indiana law, wrote approvingly of the less severe ID laws of Georgia and Florida. The result is that state voter ID laws are now highly likely to pass constitutional muster.

That's for the good.

Consider this argument: that photo ID laws could disenfranchise voters. There's another constitutional right that could be denied by laws requiring IDs to utilize: Second Amendment rights. Do the same people who argue about the possible disproportional impact of photo ID laws for the poor and elderly also worry about the difficulty of these people to meet requirements for legally acquiring a gun? And it's even worse, since it's the poor who face more crime, and the elderly whose physical infirmities most require a gun to defend themselves against younger, stronger assailants. They are most in need of guns, yet few would argue that people should be able to buy guns without showing ID.

Let's be honest about the Indiana voter ID law. Photo IDs are an essential requirement for basic living. You present a photo ID to cash a check, open a bank account, buy alcohol, tour an apartment, or fly on a commercial flight. And if you are somehow able to live without an ID, by not doing any of these things, a photo ID will be provided to you at no charge. And even if you don't avail yourself of this option, you can still vote a provisional ballot, and all you need to do is show ID later. Exactly how is this possibly disenfranchising?


College: not for all

Marty Nemko has an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education calling a university bachelor's degree "America's most overrated product."

Reading the article, that title is misleading, but the basic conclusion is obvious: if you're not going to graduate college, then going to college is a waste. You incur debt that will persist for years for a few semesters of partying and living independently.

College is absolutely worth it, since many jobs, and all advanced degrees, require a bachelor's degree. However, I agree with the fundamental point of the article: if you're not at the top of your class academically, then you should look at alternatives, such as associate's degrees and apprenticeships. As a guideline, if you find yourself starting your college degree by taking courses covering high school level material, you probably shouldn't be in college.

(via Instapundit)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

No contest

This comment is so funny, it deserves to be spread around the blogosphere:

We in Denmark cannot figure out why you are even bothering to hold an election.

On one side, you have a b*tch who is a lawyer, married to a lawyer, and a lawyer who is married to a b*tch who is a lawyer.

On the other side, you have a true war hero married to a woman with a huge chest who owns a beer distributorship.

Is there a contest here?

(Via the Actuarial Outpost)


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Pigs Fly.

Sen. Clinton wins the Pennsylvania primary. Suddenly, the two candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination have to campaign in Indiana.

I'll be sure to leave town over the weekends, and keep my finger hovering over the fast-forward button when watching TV.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

I say I doubt his grip on reality

A blurb in USA Today says Iranian nutbag Mahmoud Ahmadinejad doubts the death toll from the 9/11 attacks. "...[T]hey said that 3,000 people had been killed but never published their names," he spouted.

Funny, I remember the crawl of victims' names during the broadcast of the first anniversary of the attacks.

In the interest of fairness, I propose this: The next time there's a major earthquake in Iran, and there will be, we should deny the seriousness of the tremor. "They said that 20,000 people had been killed, but they never published their names. So we will provide no aid."

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Monday, April 07, 2008

Almost incredibly prescient

I glanced on some old newspaper on the way to the garbage can and noticed the NCAA Tournament preview. On the eve of a NCAA tournament final I have no interest in, I thought I'd see what people predicted, and mock the predictions with the benefit of hindsight.

And there were some things worth mocking, like the predictions of Dook in the Final Four. The Indianapolis Star's Terry Hutchens, on the other hand, had the following to say:

Sure, it's a long shot for a No. 10 seed to go to the Final Four, but I think Davidson oculd be the most intriguing team in the tournament.

He was one relatively close game away from having perpetual bragging rights in the newsroom!