Friday, August 31, 2012

A Great Weekend (Humor)

I hope all finds you well on this BLUE MOON Fryday…yep, today is the 2nd full moon of the month, making it a blue moon, a somewhat rare event. That brings me to my Fryday humor post. Yes, it is about a Winter / Spring relationship, but it is not all on and you understand why and I hope YOU have a GREAT weekend too!
A balding, white haired man from Ft Pierce, Florida, walked into a jewelry store on a Friday evening with a beautiful much younger gal at his side. He told the jeweler he was looking for a special ring for his girlfriend. The jeweler looked through his stock and brought out a $5,000 ring.

The man said, 'No, I'd like to see something more “special.”'

At that statement, the jeweler went to his special stock and brought another ring over. 'Here's a stunning ring at only $50,000 the jeweler said. The lady's eyes sparkled and her whole body trembled with excitement. The old man seeing this said, 'We'll take it.'

The jeweler asked how payment would be made and the man stated, 'by check. I know you need to make sure my check is good, so I'll write it now and you can call the bank Monday to verify the funds and I'll pick the ring up Monday afternoon.'

On Monday morning, the jeweler angrily phoned the old man and said 'There's no money in that account!'

'I know,' said the old man,

'But let me tell you about MY GREAT WEEKEND!'

See.......Not All Seniors Are Senile or Stupid…..

Monday, August 27, 2012

Real Wealth Redistribution

I am writing this because I sent a somewhat cheeky email about a Father and Daughter (Dem v. Rep), and I got ONE irate response saying I was a propagandist! I was totally insulted, not because he thought I was a propagandist, but because if I was using propaganda, it would have been so much better than that email.

Anyway, it did get me thinking about the morass this country is in, and why we are so far apart concerning the budget, taxes, and pretty much everything. So, being an engineer and a bridge builder (yes I love it when everyone agrees with me!!!), I thought about a solution that I think both sides of the political spectrum could agree on.

If you really want to have a true redistribution of the wealth, then one thing needs to happen: wealthy, rich people need to go out and spend it on people trying to make a living locally, not charity..but prosperity…ooh, new slogan..…or invest it in companies…or whatever. Hording money is never a good thing, so how can we loosen those purse strings? One idea would be for a tax break for “investing” in every local company or establishment you “invested” in. Of course, there would be some exceptions, but say someone bought a dress, jewelry something from a variety of Austin companies (where they live)…and it totaled $100,000..then they could get a 10% reduction on their taxes, or $10,000 reduction in tax payments.

Some constraints would include that it would have to be over $100,000 invested in the next 6 months, will need to be with local merchants (car, boat and big ticket dealers included) and the deduction could be carried forwarded for 3 years. BOTH sides could NOT argue with a solution like this? A virtual tax “rebate” for the “wealthy” and a local stimulus package rolled up in one sweet package. The “job creators” would ACTUALLY be creating jobs and the social architects would see lower unemployment, more tax revenues from incomes and sales, and the “intangible paw of despair” will be lifted immediately.

So let’s do the math…say $100 Billion was pumped into the economy over the next 6 months. The impact would be like $250 billion was distributed, sales taxes would rise, income taxes would increase (more jobs, more money), etc. And the cost: $10 Billion in taxes not collected…but you would get $20 to $30 billion in new taxes. I know if I could double or triple my money, I would do that EVERYDAY!

Implementation would be super simple. The Executive Office could mandate an Order, the IRS could generate a “Form SP’ that would indicate that ‘x’ number of dollars were spent for such and such.

The effects would be felt immediately…as each dollar in the community usually gets “turned” about 2.5 times a month.

But here is the rub. Which Party will bite? This could be the differentiator in the coming election…because you cannot argue against it. This is TRUE social welfare where EVERYONE wins…my kind of solution. Let’s pray they are not all cowards in Congress.

Jeffrey Fry

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Essay on Punctuality

Have you ever noticed that some people show up EXACTLY on time, like the cavalry, and others are habitually late?  Be it in business or your private life, the way you conduct yourself concerning other people's time is often tantamount to your success.  Here is an article by John W. Wheat describing what it means to be punctual.

Punctuality is the characteristic of being able to complete a required task or fulfill an obligation before or at a previously designated time. "Punctual" is often used synonymously with "on time."

According to each culture, there is often an understanding about what is considered an acceptable degree of punctuality. Usually, a small amount of lateness is acceptable; this is commonly about ten or fifteen minutes in Western cultures. In some cultures, such as Japanese society, or in the military there basically is no allowance.

Some cultures have an unspoken understanding that actual deadlines are different from stated deadlines; for example, it may be understood in a particular culture that people will turn up an hour later than advertised. In this case, since everyone understands that a 9am meeting will actually start around 10am, no one is inconvenienced when everyone turns up at 10am.

In cultures which value punctuality, being late is tantamount to showing disrespect for another's time and may be considered insulting. In such cases, punctuality may be enforced by social penalties, for example by excluding low-status latecomers from meetings entirely. Such considerations can lead on to considering the value of punctuality in econometrics and to considering the effects of non-punctuality on others in queuing theory.

Punctuality, time value and queuing theory
In many situations the requirement for punctuality is asymmetric. For example, in a doctor's clinic or airport, customers are expected to turn up on time for their appointment or lose it, yet may be kept waiting for an unspecified time before they can see the doctor or board the plane. This can be regarded as an assessment of the relative value of the provider's time and that of the customer, the exact value of which can be determined by a combination of queuing theory and game theory.
If the relative value was different, it would be easy to reduce waiting times by providing extra planes or doctors, and under-utilizing them, at the cost of increasing the price of travel or medical treatment proportionately. This can be seen in the behavior of the wealthy, who can afford to hire private planes and have doctors who visit them, rather than vice versa, and in the extreme case of the ultra-rich, to have their own personal physicians and dedicated private planes and flight crews who wait on their needs exclusively.
This expression of punctuality as a relative valuation of personal time value may be the reason for the description, often attributed to Louis XVIII, of punctuality as "the politeness of kings".

Copied from an article on Wikepedia by The Free Dictionary by Farlex. This article is distributed under the terms of GNU Free Document License.
“Punctuality” is clearly an important trait or behavior that is highly regarded in all cultures, with the possible exception of those cultures which place a higher priority on the “flow” of personalities and ideas rather than living life on a stopwatch. The important issue is to show respect for the people who are participating in a meeting rather than disrupting the purposes of the meeting by being hyper-conscious about the issue of whether a participant is “exactly” punctual or is within some allowable variance of the meeting time. The author of this essay has been practicing law for over 37 years and has made many appearances in all variety of State and Federal Courts during the course of those 37+years. The Judges in all of these different courts have only rarely disrupted the flow of the many hearings and matters before the court simply due to the fact that an attorney or participant is a bit late. Virtually all people, being human beings, are somewhat flawed in their ability to uniformly appear on time. Hence, my experience is that a person in charge of a court or meeting is not going to either interrupt the flow of the human interactions or disrespect any person for very minor tardiness. Nonetheless, a person should develop a pattern of behavior that puts them in the right place at the right time, if not somewhat early. By doing so, they demonstrate respect for the other participants in the meeting, including the leader. When, in the final analysis, one balances the relative merits of punctuality, active and meaningful interaction between the participants, and overt demonstrations of mutual respect, one has to place punctuality as the least of these goals of any meeting. Nonetheless, all participants should be punctual lest the group interaction is disrupted and the more important purposes are compromised.

Proverb: You should be on time for all your business appointments.

My conclusion is that one should be on time for all ones designated meeting times in order to show respect. This concept applies to business, social and even casual appointments. The singular exception is where one qualifies the expectation that one is going to be punctual, and, in some cases, that one may not be able to appear at all.

Respectfully Submitted,
John W. Wheat