Thursday, March 05, 2015

Blog it out, bros

So Eduardo Porter wrote this, where he lets John Bogle apparently say that passive investing could fix "the greater part" of America's retirement savings "shortage".

Then two of my internet buds, Noah Smith and Ryan Decker threw down.

Here's Ryan.

Here's Noah.

Now if people are approaching retirement with $104,000 and we decide that they need $500,000 or more, then clearly active investing fees are not "the greater part" of the problem. I gotta give that one to Ryan.

But, just because people do things that we think are a problem, doesn't mean it's actually a problem or crisis. Maybe people want to enjoy stuff while they are young and are willing to deal with a lower standard of living when old. I gotta give that one to Noah.

All that said, in general and on average over the long run, people are going to be notably richer from going with the low fee, buy and hold, passive investing approach. Even though his quotes in the Porter piece were messed up, I gotta give that one to Bogle.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Can't anybody here play this game? Federal Reserve Edition

So Gentle Ben Bernanke opposes Congress mandating that the Fed follow a policy rule because "

“The Fed already has a rule,” Mr. Bernanke said during a panel discussion at the Brookings Institution’s Hutchins Center on Fiscal and Monetary Policy. “It’s committed to hitting a 2% inflation target and aiming for the natural rate of unemployment. These are rules.”

Phone call for Ben Bernanke!! BB phone home!!

People, the Bernank has more Fedsplainin' to do. Look at this picture:

The article the graph came from was headlined "US Inflation undershoots Fed's 2% Target for 33rd straight month".

Maybe we should audit the Fed!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A Theory-Consistent Three-Way?

There are two sentences here I never thought I'd see in an academic paper.  "Genital salience" and "A theory-consistent three-way."  Academics is a lot fun, folks!

Sex-linked mating strategies diverge with a manipulation of genital salience 

Adam Fetterman, Nicole Kruger & Michael Robinson
 Motivation and Emotion, February 2015, Pages 99-103

Abstract: Trivers (Sexual selection and the descent of man, Aldine-Atherton, Chicago, pp 136–179, 1972) proposed that evolutionary factors should favor divergent mating strategies for males versus females. Such differences may be less pronounced among human beings than other animals and social norms and sex roles are also pertinent influences. The present experiment (N = 133 college undergraduates, 74 female) sought to bypass some of these other influences. Participants were randomly assigned to a condition designed to increase attention to the genital region (a downward pointing arrow) or not (an upward pointing arrow). They then reported on their interest in short-term (e.g., a one-night stand) and long-term (e.g., a potential marital partner) mating opportunities. A theory-consistent three-way interaction occurred such that the genital salience manipulation primed a shorter-term reproductive strategy among men and a longer-term reproductive strategy among women. The results provide unique support for evolution-linked ideas about sex differences in the form of a role for bodily attention.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Mardi Gras

Jackie Blue made it Mardi Gras.  And little Jackie was in the baby holder.  Jack looks pretty good for a grandpa, don't he?

I bet that cigarette wasn't even lit.  Much.

New KPC baby

People, we have a new mascot! Noah Smith, one of my favorite bloggers, sent us this great impersonation of Baby Patton and we are proud to fly him on our masthead!

If you'd like to be memorialized in this fashion, send your photo to me or Mungowitz and we will see what we will see.

(As always, KPC employees and their families are not eligible for this promotion)

Friday, February 20, 2015

Stupid Is as Stupid Does

Pick your favorite stupid part of this act....

Several obvious possibilities:

A.  There were skid marks UNDER the ice.  A mystery that would require Sherlock Holmes to figure out....not.

B.  The guy already had his shirt off, in case he was going to be on C*O*P*S.  In spite of the 15 degree F wind chill.  So, the only thing he actually planned was the shirt-off thing.

C.  They kept the buckets in the back seat of the other car.

D.  The friend, who showed up later, was ALSO drunk and was also charged with drunk driving.

E.  The artificial black ice could quite possibly have caused another car to run into the guy who had faked the accident.  Perhaps it wasn't C*O*P*S, but a Darwin Award, that he was going for all along.

F.  For reasons that escape, women seem to LIKE this kind of guy (hey, he was creative, and he had a BMW until he wrecked it, faked an accident, and had to go to jail!).  So maybe it's not even a Darwin Award, but a highly effective redneck mating dance.  Leaving me to draw the conclusion that, once again, women are the very hardest thing to understand or explain.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Pretzel Logic

Apropos of at least a few things, here is a very funny story from Michael Crichton:

A man goes on vacation and leaves his cat with his best friend. And he’s on vacation and the friend calls him up and says, “Listen. I’ve got some bad news. The cat got up on the roof and we can’t it down. We called the fire department. They came. The cat jumped to a tree. They went up the tree, but anyway, the cat fell, the cat’s dead.”

They guy said, “Oh, my God! How can you tell me in this way?”

He said, “Well, how should I have told you?”

He said, “Well, you have to prepare me. The first day, you should have called and said, listen, the cat’s on the roof and we can’t get her down. Then the second day, you call and you say the fire department’s here and the cat’s jumped to the tree, and the third day, you call me and you say the cat died, and by then, I’m prepared.”

The guy said, “Oh, that’s the way you want it?” He said yes.

He continues his vacation. Gets a call a week later, and his friend says, “Listen, your mother’s on the roof and we can’t get her down.”

The whole Crichton talk is pretty fun.

When The Internet is Regulated....

When the internet is regulated, only the regulated will have internet.