Monday, March 27, 2017

Low Expectations


The way to never be disappointed is to never expect much out of other people. That way, they can never let you down, because you're already there.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

401(k)


We had a lunch-n-learn conference out at work explaining all the wonderful advantages of letting a bank nursemaid us through our 401(k) mutual fund investments.

No thank you, Mr. Bank, you charge 1% for the dubious privilege of your pedestrian expertise, consisting of what is the difference between a stock and a bond, and your mutual fund selection is full of funds with expense ratios through the roof, an astronomical 1 - 2%. I will stick with my IRA and the only good mutual fund family, VANGUARD, thank you not at all, except for the free lunch, which was basically junk food, by the way, just like your entire product offering. What, are you trying to give us a heart attack with the food?

Some doofus raised his hand asking what the expense ratios were. The saleslady replied they were what the bank pays the mutual funds, which was a bald-faced lie, because the customer pays the mutual funds out of his principal. Nothing but lies in this meeting. They were telling us 401(k) was the only tax shelter, ignoring IRAs altogether, because they don't make money from that. After the meeting, I considered calling up Johnny to let him know the real scoop. I know my way around investing. But then I remembered back when I first started at the company. One day, when I was green on the job, Johnny sneered at me because I carried a heavy toolbox to fix a little problem that required just a single cable. Well, hey, you know what, expense ratios are Johnny's toolbox. The expense ratio's on him. That's his heavy toolbox he's lugging around, looking like a fool. Me, I'm with Vanguard. Let him pay that 1-2% for the next ten years.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Maybe I'm All Wrong


Perhaps I am impudent, but I dissent from Tyson and Duquette. I know, they are learned occultists with ump-ixty years of experience compared to my rather limited background, but I just don't like the numerological, Hebrew-centric approach. My blood rebels against Hebrew letters. I feel there is a better way, aside from cramming textbooks and following precise formulae based upon ancient culture that lacks relevance in today's world. If indeed, as Tyson and DuQuette appear to concur, magic is all in your head, then there are no rules, and they are self-confessed charlatans. Their books retain value, because they offer experience and guidance, but I think the solitary practitioner may, if he so chooses, forge his own way. The masters have already granted permission and left the door open, so I see no reason not to open it.

And I see no reason to add a "k" to the word "magic." Shakespeare didn't, so why should we?

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Trump Would Rather Be Bombing A-rabs


Trump would rather be bombing A-rabs than paying for any medical care for the poor. Billions more for bombs, on top of and above the billions we already spend, but "Let 'em die!" seems to be the Republican motto when it comes to low-income citizens. Now, instead of Obamacare, the poor will discover that Trump-Doesn't-Care. I saw this one coming a mile away. What's interesting is that a lot of people that voted for Trump will be losing their health insurance. Contrary to Reason, I think Trump supporters will be O.K. with suffering and dying due to Trump, because he is a white man, and better yet of their own tribe. All they want is a white man of proper pedigree to call the shots, even if they and all their loved ones suffer and die. They will vote Republican in the next election as well, and this time they want to lose Social Security and everything else and hopefully get a world war out of the bargain. I recognize that Thanatos is a profound human need; people crave death, suffering, and resent those that want to forestall the inevitable. "Gxx-Damn Liberals" is what we are, communists, traitors, what-have-you. Thanatos indeed is the overriding impulse in some people. Human history is outlined by wars for a reason. Humans procreate and at the same time, find ways that they and all their kin might be annihilated; so the circle achieves completion. Reason ain't in it, only spiritual mumbo-jumbo that is hard to fathom.

As for Trump's increase of defense spending, although that sounds good in principle--we all want to be safe--the ugly truth about defense spending is that a huge amount goes to waste, up in smoke due to pure negligence, corruption, schmoozing, parties, kickbacks, gifts, you name it. Generals retire to become salesmen for the very firms they used to purchase from. In any case, this is the real reason that Trump wants to increase defense spending--to enrich his cronies the easy way. They don't have to work hard or think at all. They just collect checks from the government. Welfare for the rich.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

I Didn't Approve of Stephen King


When I was growing up, horror was just becoming a thing. It was wildly popular, and Stephen King dominated the bookstores. He was described as a young rebel, an upstart taking over the bestseller list. My friends read his stuff. I was appalled. It seemed, well, horrible, all this talk of the supernatural and worse, the evil supernatural. But that is where my world went, and in time, I followed, although I was one of the late adopters. I later learned King drank mouthwash to get drunk. He was a chronic alcoholic, ready to down a case to finish a book. Perhaps, indeed, it is how he managed channeling the spirits that wrote his books; but that is speculation on my part. I do think King is a good man, probably a very good man, and a very gifted writer. His presence among the canon can be undisputed; no library would be complete without him. I have read most, though not all, of his books. Besides his tendency to dwell upon the negative, another thing I dislike about him is repetition. His books do seem the same. I think any author, after a time, repeats himself, because being human, he has a finite number of thoughts and ideas. In summary, I wish to clarify that I do approve of Stephen King, now; I didn't, when he first came out, because I'm a biological conservative, that is, conservative in nature, if not politics, or at least modern politics.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

To Be Old in America


Did I ever imagine, in my wildest dreams, that a United States President, a right-wing, conservative Republican at that, would play the Manchurian Candidate? No... not even while under the influence of cannabis. In their totality and simplicity, the signs are damning, to anyone that watches and listens, to anyone that is not blinded by partisan fervor. No matter the outcome, there will remain a stench of corruption around Trump's dealings with Russia. It may well fall upon patriotic conservative Republicans, of which there are many, to impeach a conservative Republican President, only for the good of the country. If his whole Administration has to go, as indeed it may, the rot extending from the roof to the floor, including Pence and all the others, then perhaps we will have Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) as President.

One thing is sure. These United States cannot ally with Putin. Then we would be evil and so much worse for this poor old world.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Hypocrisy


Now that the Republicans are in power in Washington, D.C., it is plain as day they are total hypocrites. All the little things they criticized the Democrats for, they have already done. Republicans are just hypocrites that want to get their way any which way they can. "The ends justify the means"--except in this case they really don't. The Republicans are going to pile up additional debt increasing an already over-sized military and giving tax breaks to corporations, while at the same time depriving people of health care and ignoring the environment. The reason they want to expand the military is simple and clear--they want a war with Iran.
techlorebyigor is my personal journal for ideas & opinions