Print Story How can you do the T and A
By georgeha (Tue May 22, 2007 at 10:44:39 AM EST) money, ball gags, Commies, Nazis, drugs (all tags)
without the A? AKA the Notorious Bettie Page.

Plus Ivan's War, Vineland, remorse, pulling the plug and less.

Poll: Best retirement strategy?

It was a good, but low key weekend. My parents took the girls Saturday night, the most special thing we did was watch the Notorious Bettie Page, which was surprisingly mediocre for a flick about a pinup girl known for S&M. Part of the problem was Gretchen Mol as Bettie, she's not bodacious enough, though when compared to the real Bettie Page (with a helpfully included segment on the DVD), her breasts work, but she's missing it in the hips. The switching between black and white and color confused me too.

We also went to a different Indian place on Sunday, and with last night's chili, I'm suprised I'm not afflicted with that old burning ring of fire. OTOH, my excretions smell of sulfur.

Another find at the local IP depository (yeah, we have DVD's with nekkid chicks!) was Ivan's War, a lengthy tome about a Russian soldier's lives on the Eastern front. It was pretty depressing, I understand better why Klink and Schultz feared the Eastern Front.

Speaking of TV, I just reread Vineland, it only took at few days, which just shows how accessible it is. Pynchon lite, but with it's charms.

Mrs. Ha feels bad about quitting, but it's mostly about the money. She is looking for other work,  but creative work with children doesn't pay very well.

In related news, I stopped my 401k contributions. I'm hoping the difference will be enough to balance my budget until things get better, and I can resume contributing within the year (I hate losing the matching contribution). Let's be honest, retirement planning is still a big gamble, who knows if my company pension will be worth anything in 20 years, ditto social security, or even the US dollar. What's your retirement strategy?

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How can you do the T and A | 29 comments (29 topical, 0 hidden)
retirement plan by cam (4.00 / 1) #2 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:18:24 AM EST
get rich before age 45.

Freedom, liberty, equity and an Australian Republic

I have less than four years by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #3 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:20:43 AM EST
I better get scratching on those instant win tickets.

[ Parent ]
originally the plan was by cam (2.00 / 0) #5 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:56:51 AM EST
That's because you got it backwards by georgeha (4.00 / 3) #6 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:57:47 AM EST
you buy the 'vette after you get rich.

[ Parent ]
Missing Poll Option: by greyrat (2.00 / 0) #4 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:29:11 AM EST
  • Suicide at 65 -- or whatever retirement age is now...

  • Logan's Run by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #7 Tue May 22, 2007 at 12:20:55 PM EST

    Earth First!
    (We can strip mine the rest later.)

    [ Parent ]
    401k plus by StackyMcRacky (2.00 / 0) #8 Tue May 22, 2007 at 01:10:08 PM EST
    generally living below our means, so we can throw everything extra into savings.  also, we're working on a few non-corporate income strategies that can carry us until we die.

    plus a bunch of other stuff that i can't think of right now.  i have a whole lifelong financial strategy we're working on.

    Not necessarily by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #9 Tue May 22, 2007 at 02:54:29 PM EST
    If your debt is financed at a lower rate than you can reasonably expect get on your investments, you're better off paying it at whatever the contractual rate is.

    No - ignores tax by Phage (2.00 / 0) #20 Wed May 23, 2007 at 05:04:10 AM EST
    Returns on investments are taxable. So, if you reduce your debts at 10% you get the benefit of 10% tax-free. To get an equivalent return you would have to have a return of 10% plus your tax rate. In soviet UKia this would translate to ~14%.

    [ Parent ]
    If your debt is at 10%, sure by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #25 Wed May 23, 2007 at 01:20:25 PM EST
    You're probably better off investing in getting rid of that. My bank is posting mortgage rates of 5-6% at the moment, which is a different story.

    [ Parent ]
    Errr no by Phage (4.00 / 1) #28 Thu May 24, 2007 at 12:57:34 AM EST
    The tax effect will occur at any rates. In order to make a profit,
    Return on investment>interest rate on debt+tax rate payable.
    In your example you will need a return of 5.5%(compunding)+(0.4*5.5%)= 7.7%. That return must also be risk-free and compunding annually.

    [ Parent ]
    7.7% isn't hard... by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #29 Thu May 24, 2007 at 12:26:56 PM EST
    As I said, you can generally expect a 10% per annum return on properly managed investments over the long term. Risk is a short term phenomenon provided investment is properly diversified.

    Also, at least in Canada, it's much easier to mitigate taxes on capital gains than income, and they're lower to start with. Further (I think, IANAA) you can write off most interest, especially on a mortgage on your primary residence.

    [ Parent ]
    Only in USia by Phage (4.00 / 1) #30 Fri May 25, 2007 at 12:06:31 AM EST
    You're right, but only the US. certainly in Aus and the Uk interest on a mortgage is only deductible for a business premise. Also the capital gain on the sale would also be taxed.

    [ Parent ]
    Canadia too by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #31 Fri May 25, 2007 at 12:32:40 AM EST
    At least, I'm pretty sure it is, up to a point. Also, I believe you're not taxed on any gain if you immediately use it to buy another home.

    Even so, the point remains. You can often do better investing rather than paying off a mortgage, depending on the rate.

    [ Parent ]
    Different purposes by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #27 Wed May 23, 2007 at 04:51:42 PM EST
    You can generally expect about a 10% return over the long term. So long as you're diversified, you don't bear much risk, though you will see short term fluctuations. Mortgages, on the other hand, provide a low risk income stream which does not fluctuate.

    If you have a fixed income, you're right, you shouldn't be investing against a mortgage. If you can pay off the mortgage over time regardless, you shouldn't worry too much about paying it off early.

    [ Parent ]
    sort of WIPO by clover kicker (2.00 / 0) #10 Tue May 22, 2007 at 03:08:43 PM EST
    I once asked a buddy if he was had put any money into the Canadian version of a 401K, and he said he prefers to invest in canned food and shotgun shells.

    At the time his retirement plan was a big vegetable garden, a few hens, a couple of pigs, etc. etc.

    that sounds like a pretty good plan by garlic (2.00 / 0) #16 Wed May 23, 2007 at 04:47:13 AM EST
    I approve of investments that you can eat.

    [ Parent ]
    401k is not a pension by lm (4.00 / 2) #11 Tue May 22, 2007 at 03:32:19 PM EST
    If you've got a corporate pension, lowering your 401k contributions shouldn't do anything to lower your pension. And if you are making 401k contributions, the last thing you should be doing is directing the contributions to be invested in company stock. Further, if the corporate match is in company stock, you should be liquidating it at the first opportunity to put into something else.

    My retirement plan is to depend on my children to support me in my old age and, if that fails, to rob banks until I get caught.

    Kindness is an act of rebellion.
    Right by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #14 Tue May 22, 2007 at 05:32:48 PM EST
    I have the 401k, which my corp matches halfways to 4%, and a zillion ways to invest (company stock, internally managed stock funds, bond funds, mixed funds, externally managed funds), and a pension, but will my pension fund be solvent in 20 years? How good is a Bethlehem steel pension these days.

    I try to keep my company stock to around 25%, which works for me.

    [ Parent ]
    The former Bethlehem Steel pension is doing okay by lm (4.00 / 1) #21 Wed May 23, 2007 at 06:17:56 AM EST
    Bought out by the federally funded PGBC, I believe that those who are vested in the pension get about 90% of what they would have had not Bethlehem gone TU. The real pain that the pensioners are feeling, though, is the loss of medical coverage with the bankruptcy court allowed the company to abort.

    Actually, pensions are relatively secure so long as the company is funding it adequately at present and has done so in the past. Most of the pension crises are coming about because companies have spent entire profitable decades underfunding their pensions and then when business goes south, the shortfall starts to get noticed.

    Kindness is an act of rebellion.
    [ Parent ]
    So the Bethlehem pension is funded by the by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #23 Wed May 23, 2007 at 06:57:22 AM EST
    same government that is guaranteeing Social Security?

    I'm hoping my pension is safely funded, our corp credit rating has improved, and I've never heard any dicey reports of pension mismanagement.

    [ Parent ]
    Not entirely by lm (2.00 / 0) #24 Wed May 23, 2007 at 07:10:33 AM EST
    The shortfall between what the PBGC received from the former Bethlehem fund (and interest earned on investing those funds) and what the PBGC has agreed to pay out to former Bethlehem pensioners is funded by the feds.

    Relying on the government doesn't frighten me all that much for two reasons. The first is that if the US government goes bankrupt, being poor will be the least of the worries of most people save those who live in a handful of states with demonstrably competent state governments. The second is that Social Security and Medicare, for the most part, are actually competently run programs. They certainly aren't perfect but they also illustrate that government run programs can work and work reasonably well.

    Kindness is an act of rebellion.
    [ Parent ]
    WIPO: Live off the fatta tha lan' by Greener (4.00 / 2) #12 Tue May 22, 2007 at 03:53:37 PM EST
    Tell me about the rabbits, George

    I invest in The Singularity by dn (2.00 / 0) #13 Tue May 22, 2007 at 05:25:14 PM EST
    When the robots take over, I'm gonna be one of them!

        I ♥   

    All good points by Phage (2.00 / 0) #15 Tue May 22, 2007 at 11:12:48 PM EST
    I'm a bit hazy on the US system.
    As your local CPA I can tell you that dmg had a good post (!?).
    1. Pay off debt.
    2. Invest in tax efficient funds. Check your local regs.
    3. Diversify.
    4. Import 500Kg of Class A stuff.
    Also why is real estate not on your poll ? Long term low-risk and can provide both an income stream and capital gain.

    because he had an LM like experience. by garlic (2.00 / 0) #17 Wed May 23, 2007 at 04:50:00 AM EST

    [ Parent ]
    He's allergic to construction ? by Phage (2.00 / 0) #18 Wed May 23, 2007 at 04:58:34 AM EST

    [ Parent ]
    That's not really the same thing, though by lm (2.00 / 0) #22 Wed May 23, 2007 at 06:23:54 AM EST
    Buying a single house to rent out for extra income compares to real estate investment in the same way that an interest bearing checking account compares to currency investing. A serious real estate investor will put up >100k as down payment for a >500k mortgage and either buy a multi-unit complex with or speculate on large land set to become the next suburban sub-division of paradise.

    Of course as you get out of the heartland and out to the coasts the barrier to entry goes up. You probably need >500k to be serious real estate investor in NYC while in Ohio, 100k will get you started just fine.

    Kindness is an act of rebellion.
    [ Parent ]
    I added real estate by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #19 Wed May 23, 2007 at 05:03:50 AM EST
    though a reverse mortgage comes close, and I count myself lucky to walk away from our last house coming out about even. lm may do better than that, who knows.

    [ Parent ]
    How can you do the T and A | 29 comments (29 topical, 0 hidden)