Author Topic: Overheard at Work 2  (Read 929137 times)

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2550 on: July 07, 2020, 02:12:12 PM »
This morning in the wall street journal an article said 59% of working age people don't have any money in a retirement account, and then later on in the article they said if families have savings at all, it is most often in a retirement account. Those statements put together show how dire the situation is. It doesn't surprise me at all though because I'm from a family where savings, especially retirement savings, are unheard of. The mindset is that retirement savings = social security, and you just plan on working until you can't possible work any longer and then dying.

Here's the article but it is behind the paywall.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/states-take-aim-at-people-with-no-retirement-plan-11593945474?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1

I'm genuinely interested in this topic so I went looking. I couldn't find a non-paywalled version of the article, nor was the actual source data from the National Institute on Retirement Security obvious.

Economista pointed out off-line that the source data is from this NIRS article, I didn't find it earlier because I didn't go back to 2018.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2551 on: July 08, 2020, 09:03:37 AM »
I'm genuinely interested in this topic so I went looking. I couldn't find a non-paywalled version of the article, nor was the actual source data from the National Institute on Retirement Security obvious. But I did find something similar from NIRS, which maybe is the source data, which claims that 40% of over-60s only receive income from Social Security, not from pensions ("DB" or "Defined Benefit Plans") or 401k/403b/IRAs ("DC" or "Defined Contribution Plans"). Another NIRS tidbit is that among Boomers - who are approaching retirement age if not already there - the wealthiest 25% own a whopping 91% of the money, and the bottom 50% only own 2%.
I wonder if the shift is because the bottom 50%, having started out with less, have expended more of their financial assets, while those who started out with more still haven't worked through it.  E.g. if I start out with $2 and my friend starts off with $8, he has 80% of the money and I have 20%.  If we both spend $2, now he has 100% of what's left.  I guess I'm not sure if it should bother me to see that sort of shift.

Even if that is the cause, running out of money 5 years into retirement and relying solely on SS is surely undesirable.
Certainly it's undesirable, but it doesn't necessarily point to an injustice IMO.  As much as it has metastasized into our culture, SS was never meant to be a sole source of support in retirement.

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2552 on: July 08, 2020, 09:13:12 AM »
I'm genuinely interested in this topic so I went looking. I couldn't find a non-paywalled version of the article, nor was the actual source data from the National Institute on Retirement Security obvious. But I did find something similar from NIRS, which maybe is the source data, which claims that 40% of over-60s only receive income from Social Security, not from pensions ("DB" or "Defined Benefit Plans") or 401k/403b/IRAs ("DC" or "Defined Contribution Plans"). Another NIRS tidbit is that among Boomers - who are approaching retirement age if not already there - the wealthiest 25% own a whopping 91% of the money, and the bottom 50% only own 2%.
I wonder if the shift is because the bottom 50%, having started out with less, have expended more of their financial assets, while those who started out with more still haven't worked through it.  E.g. if I start out with $2 and my friend starts off with $8, he has 80% of the money and I have 20%.  If we both spend $2, now he has 100% of what's left.  I guess I'm not sure if it should bother me to see that sort of shift.

Even if that is the cause, running out of money 5 years into retirement and relying solely on SS is surely undesirable.
Certainly it's undesirable, but it doesn't necessarily point to an injustice IMO.  As much as it has metastasized into our culture, SS was never meant to be a sole source of support in retirement.

Yes, that's my point. SS was not meant to be the sole source of support in retirement. And if it is, for half of the people, then the current system is obviously broken and needs to be changed.

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2553 on: July 08, 2020, 09:37:10 AM »
I'm genuinely interested in this topic so I went looking. I couldn't find a non-paywalled version of the article, nor was the actual source data from the National Institute on Retirement Security obvious. But I did find something similar from NIRS, which maybe is the source data, which claims that 40% of over-60s only receive income from Social Security, not from pensions ("DB" or "Defined Benefit Plans") or 401k/403b/IRAs ("DC" or "Defined Contribution Plans"). Another NIRS tidbit is that among Boomers - who are approaching retirement age if not already there - the wealthiest 25% own a whopping 91% of the money, and the bottom 50% only own 2%.
I wonder if the shift is because the bottom 50%, having started out with less, have expended more of their financial assets, while those who started out with more still haven't worked through it.  E.g. if I start out with $2 and my friend starts off with $8, he has 80% of the money and I have 20%.  If we both spend $2, now he has 100% of what's left.  I guess I'm not sure if it should bother me to see that sort of shift.

Even if that is the cause, running out of money 5 years into retirement and relying solely on SS is surely undesirable.
Certainly it's undesirable, but it doesn't necessarily point to an injustice IMO.  As much as it has metastasized into our culture, SS was never meant to be a sole source of support in retirement.

Yes, that's my point. SS was not meant to be the sole source of support in retirement. And if it is, for half of the people, then the current system is obviously broken and needs to be changed.

Or a lot of people are idiots who will sacrifice their future by spending every dollar they make now. Even when confronted with hard truths, they would rather blame the system than take responsibility for their own future.

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2554 on: July 08, 2020, 09:48:41 AM »
Or a lot of people are idiots who will sacrifice their future by spending every dollar they make now. Even when confronted with hard truths, they would rather blame the system than take responsibility for their own future.

I believe that a good system provides good outcomes for the majority of people, by definition. If it does not provide good outcomes for the majority of people, only for the, say, top 10% like you and me, then it's a bad system.

You can point to individual people and say that individual people should take more responsibility for their situation etc etc etc all day long, and I'd probably agree with you. But if most people are getting screwed, then it's not an individual problem, it's a systemic problem.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2555 on: July 08, 2020, 09:57:02 AM »
Even if that is the cause, running out of money 5 years into retirement and relying solely on SS is surely undesirable.
Certainly it's undesirable, but it doesn't necessarily point to an injustice IMO.  As much as it has metastasized into our culture, SS was never meant to be a sole source of support in retirement.

Yes, that's my point. SS was not meant to be the sole source of support in retirement. And if it is, for half of the people, then the current system is obviously broken and needs to be changed.
[/quote]If, by "the current system is obviously broken," you mean "decades of consumerism and well-intentioned but misguided expansions of social welfare have led half of baby boomers to abandon responsibility for their own retirement finances," then I agree.  Instead of politicians promising that Uncle Sam will take care of you, let's instead make sure that people understand that SS *isn't* meant to support you.  Sadly, that doesn't make for a very effective campaign slogan...

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2556 on: July 08, 2020, 10:04:07 AM »
If, by "the current system is obviously broken," you mean "decades of consumerism and well-intentioned but misguided expansions of social welfare have led half of baby boomers to abandon responsibility for their own retirement finances," then I agree.  Instead of politicians promising that Uncle Sam will take care of you, let's instead make sure that people understand that SS *isn't* meant to support you.  Sadly, that doesn't make for a very effective campaign slogan...

I'm legitimately curious what your actual practical suggestions are. Take SS away entirely and just tell people to "figure it out"?! Or... what exactly? There is a problem here that we both agree is a problem. What is your preferred solution?

LennStar

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2557 on: July 08, 2020, 10:54:48 AM »
Not to mention that there is the simple but important bit that the current SS system (in various form over the countries) is also a product of the 1929 economy crisis.

For example, you could have saved as much as you wanted, if you suddenly pay in billions, your savings are worth less than the paper it's printed on. As long as your "security" is money based, it is risky.

That is why I like the much insulted German system. It is based on actual production. And let's face it, underproduction was not exactly a problem in the west for the last half century.

And telling people to figure it out... to know how well this works, just look at the people enthusiastic about how good a work Trump has done and that vaccines just make you sick.

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2558 on: July 08, 2020, 11:29:26 AM »
The system is in place for people to succeed. The old adage, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," certainly applies.

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2559 on: July 08, 2020, 11:33:39 AM »
The system is in place for people to succeed. The old adage, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," certainly applies.

It does not apply, because there are plenty of countries that do force their citizens to save for retirement in one way or another, and do solve this problem.

So you're saying that your preferred solution really is "take away SS and tell people to 'figure it out'"? Or is it that you don't have any solution, and just shrug and say "it is what it is" when presented with the problem?

Goldielocks

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2560 on: July 08, 2020, 11:39:13 AM »
Think about those SS stats... They would likely include:

Spouses that worked but did not invest $$s in their own name.
People who have spent their savings, possibly by giving it away or having private care in later retirement, in order to be eligible for subsidized long term care.
People that have spent their savings because they have lived a very long time (over 85) and don't need a lot.

People that put their "savings" into a fully paid off home.  This one is pretty common, and now just pull SS.
People that put their savings into a savings account, under the mattress, etc, and therefore don't show any income.
People that spent money on kids' education, weddings, kids home down payments, and in turn, rely on the kids to support them now.  (Also more common than I had thought).

People that only ever made <$60k a year and had little left over while raising families, yet the SS amount now is more than enough.

Maximum SS is $3k a month.   If you have a spouse, you could be getting more than this.  With a paid off home, this is PLENTY.   IMO even $2k/month with a paid off home and medicare is plenty.

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2561 on: July 08, 2020, 11:44:48 AM »
The system is in place for people to succeed. The old adage, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," certainly applies.

It does not apply, because there are plenty of countries that do force their citizens to save for retirement in one way or another, and do solve this problem.

So you're saying that your preferred solution really is "take away SS and tell people to 'figure it out'"? Or is it that you don't have any solution, and just shrug and say "it is what it is" when presented with the problem?

Not everything requires a huge policy change. My solution would be to increase education. Make it required learning in high school. You can leave SS as it is, though I wouldn't complain if there were an opt-out option for people who'd rather invest that money and get a decent return on it.

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2562 on: July 08, 2020, 12:01:28 PM »
I think “should” is a bad policy premise. Regardless of whether people should be saving money or not, the simple fact is that many don’t/ we are hardwire to do poorly at delayed gratification and prioritize Now over Later. So given that the question in my mind is how to maximize the chance of a safe financial figure for the most people in the easiest way possible. Any time you fight against human nature you are either not going to be very successful (think of abstinence-only) education, or it will be difficult and expensive. So it has to be easy.

We have seen that making the default option for 401k participation be to participate increases how many people use the plan. Similarly the auto-increase option allows people to save more each year in retirement accounts without having to do anything. Make people’s naturel laziness work for you instead of against you. In this a default opt-in system like SS is great for most people because they don’t have to do anything and can’t mess it up too badly with their own short-sighted thinking. (“Borrowing against my retirement savings to buy that sweet boat is an awesome idea!”)

Just Joe

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2563 on: July 08, 2020, 12:56:36 PM »
The system is in place for people to succeed. The old adage, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," certainly applies.

So what should the system do? Tax people more (European rate perhaps) and make SS a retirement solution?

I can imagine a conservative politician blowing that idea up 10 seconds later complaining about unfair higher taxes.

Ten seconds later the people that the changes are meant to help are promptly agreeing.

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2564 on: July 08, 2020, 01:08:24 PM »
The system is in place for people to succeed. The old adage, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink," certainly applies.

So what should the system do? Tax people more (European rate perhaps) and make SS a retirement solution?

I can imagine a conservative politician blowing that idea up 10 seconds later complaining about unfair higher taxes.

Ten seconds later the people that the changes are meant to help are promptly agreeing.

Neither party is going to allow significant changes to SS proposed by the other. Debating what the government should do with it is wasted energy. So what can the government do instead?

Just Joe

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2565 on: July 08, 2020, 01:16:02 PM »
I think the ACA mandate has shown us what the political establishment is capable of. And what the people meant to help might feel about the help.

The ACA needs some adjustments and polish but the intention is good. Too bad its been politicized so much.

The problem with 401K is that if there is a major recession (market collapse) then a portion of the population is in a tough place and may be drawing on their principle in short order. I knew of people in 2008 in this very situation. I think the solution whatever it would be needs to be more robust than the stock market.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2020, 01:20:21 PM by Just Joe »

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2566 on: July 08, 2020, 01:56:02 PM »
I think the ACA mandate has shown us what the political establishment is capable of. And what the people meant to help might feel about the help.

The ACA needs some adjustments and polish but the intention is good. Too bad its been politicized so much.

The problem with 401K is that if there is a major recession (market collapse) then a portion of the population is in a tough place and may be drawing on their principle in short order. I knew of people in 2008 in this very situation. I think the solution whatever it would be needs to be more robust than the stock market.

ACA itself is evidence of the failure of Washington. We needed universal healthcare, and all we could get, even when one political party controls both houses of congress and the presidency, is the ACA.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2567 on: July 08, 2020, 02:13:53 PM »
If, by "the current system is obviously broken," you mean "decades of consumerism and well-intentioned but misguided expansions of social welfare have led half of baby boomers to abandon responsibility for their own retirement finances," then I agree.  Instead of politicians promising that Uncle Sam will take care of you, let's instead make sure that people understand that SS *isn't* meant to support you.  Sadly, that doesn't make for a very effective campaign slogan...
I'm legitimately curious what your actual practical suggestions are. Take SS away entirely and just tell people to "figure it out"?! Or... what exactly? There is a problem here that we both agree is a problem. What is your preferred solution?
Can you first define what you perceive the problem to be?  I just want to make sure we're discussing the same thing.  I've participated in too many discussions where the participants were talking past each other without realizing it :)

sherr

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2568 on: July 08, 2020, 02:21:03 PM »
If, by "the current system is obviously broken," you mean "decades of consumerism and well-intentioned but misguided expansions of social welfare have led half of baby boomers to abandon responsibility for their own retirement finances," then I agree.  Instead of politicians promising that Uncle Sam will take care of you, let's instead make sure that people understand that SS *isn't* meant to support you.  Sadly, that doesn't make for a very effective campaign slogan...
I'm legitimately curious what your actual practical suggestions are. Take SS away entirely and just tell people to "figure it out"?! Or... what exactly? There is a problem here that we both agree is a problem. What is your preferred solution?
Can you first define what you perceive the problem to be?  I just want to make sure we're discussing the same thing.  I've participated in too many discussions where the participants were talking past each other without realizing it :)

That roughly half of all Americans entering retirement apparently have no retirement savings and are completely dependent on Social Security.

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2569 on: July 08, 2020, 05:27:07 PM »
This morning in the wall street journal an article said 59% of working age people don't have any money in a retirement account, and then later on in the article they said if families have savings at all, it is most often in a retirement account. Those statements put together show how dire the situation is. It doesn't surprise me at all though because I'm from a family where savings, especially retirement savings, are unheard of. The mindset is that retirement savings = social security, and you just plan on working until you can't possible work any longer and then dying.

Here's the article but it is behind the paywall.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/states-take-aim-at-people-with-no-retirement-plan-11593945474?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1

I'm less familiar with the American SS program, but here in Canada, we have Old Age Security (OAS), which kicks in at age 65 for and pays approx $600 Cdn/month, or if that's all the income you have, then about $1200/month, including the Supplement. Try living on even 1200 a month here.  It can be done, but it's a sparse kind of life. It was implemented in 1927, when most people didn't live long enough to collect it.  I think the average life-span was about 64 then.  So it was expected that you worked until you died.  Now that life spans are much longer, the only logical step is to either have a laddered amount for deferring or mandated later starting date.

SwordGuy

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2570 on: July 08, 2020, 05:30:17 PM »
This morning in the wall street journal an article said 59% of working age people don't have any money in a retirement account, and then later on in the article they said if families have savings at all, it is most often in a retirement account. Those statements put together show how dire the situation is. It doesn't surprise me at all though because I'm from a family where savings, especially retirement savings, are unheard of. The mindset is that retirement savings = social security, and you just plan on working until you can't possible work any longer and then dying.

Here's the article but it is behind the paywall.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/states-take-aim-at-people-with-no-retirement-plan-11593945474?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1

I'm less familiar with the American SS program, but here in Canada, we have Old Age Security (OAS), which kicks in at age 65 for and pays approx $600 Cdn/month, or if that's all the income you have, then about $1200/month, including the Supplement. Try living on even 1200 a month here.  It can be done, but it's a sparse kind of life. It was implemented in 1927, when most people didn't live long enough to collect it.  I think the average life-span was about 64 then.  So it was expected that you worked until you died.  Now that life spans are much longer, the only logical step is to either have a laddered amount for deferring or mandated later starting date.

Or increase the amount that's saved into the program...

Gerard

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2571 on: July 08, 2020, 06:36:33 PM »
here in Canada, we have Old Age Security (OAS), which kicks in at age 65 for and pays approx $600 Cdn/month, or if that's all the income you have, then about $1200/month, including the Supplement. Try living on even 1200 a month here.  It can be done, but it's a sparse kind of life. It was implemented in 1927, when most people didn't live long enough to collect it.  I think the average life-span was about 64 then.  So it was expected that you worked until you died.  Now that life spans are much longer, the only logical step is to either have a laddered amount for deferring or mandated later starting date.

That number felt a little low, so I had a look... as far as I can tell, the minimum income a senior (65+) can get from the government is $1529 a month... see https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/publicpensions/cpp/old-age-security/payments/tab1-1.html.  That assumes the person has spent their entire adult life in Canada, but never worked, never contributed to the Canada Pension Plan, and never had a spouse that worked or contributed. It's still not a lot of money, but it's fairly generous for somebody who didn't put any money in!

I'm happy to be corrected on this if I'm missing something... I do know, for example, that you have to apply separately for OAS, and many seniors aren't aware of that.

Goldielocks

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2572 on: July 08, 2020, 08:34:39 PM »
This morning in the wall street journal an article said 59% of working age people don't have any money in a retirement account, and then later on in the article they said if families have savings at all, it is most often in a retirement account. Those statements put together show how dire the situation is. It doesn't surprise me at all though because I'm from a family where savings, especially retirement savings, are unheard of. The mindset is that retirement savings = social security, and you just plan on working until you can't possible work any longer and then dying.

Here's the article but it is behind the paywall.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/states-take-aim-at-people-with-no-retirement-plan-11593945474?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1

I'm less familiar with the American SS program, but here in Canada, we have Old Age Security (OAS), which kicks in at age 65 for and pays approx $600 Cdn/month, or if that's all the income you have, then about $1200/month, including the Supplement. Try living on even 1200 a month here.  It can be done, but it's a sparse kind of life. It was implemented in 1927, when most people didn't live long enough to collect it.  I think the average life-span was about 64 then.  So it was expected that you worked until you died.  Now that life spans are much longer, the only logical step is to either have a laddered amount for deferring or mandated later starting date.

Or increase the amount that's saved into the program...
OAS is a social security / welfare type program funded by general overhead  and everyone's taxes, not a "pay into it" system like Canada Pension Plan.

In other words, there is no saving into the OAS / GIS program, it comes out of general revenues fresh each year.

Someone who never worked and who has lived in Canada 40 years after age 18 can get $1200/mo to live on, as a 65 yr old senior without other income, which is a lot more than the provincial welfare system gives someone who is 55 and technically able to work.

Canada Pension plan currently requires you to work and pay into it, (like SS), and maxes out payments at $1200/mo.  The average person (due to working less or with far below average incomes) receives $900/mo.

Therefore, when combined with OAS, the average senior would get around CAD$1525/mo to live on, if no other pension plan or retirement savings.   (Their spouse could get the same amount, if they also worked the average). 

You can see why Canadians think that a SS system that pays out an average US$1500/mo, or US$2500/couple with the maximum payout double that number, seems just fine, especially if a paid off home is involved.

LennStar

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2573 on: July 09, 2020, 04:00:49 AM »
This morning in the wall street journal an article said 59% of working age people don't have any money in a retirement account, and then later on in the article they said if families have savings at all, it is most often in a retirement account. Those statements put together show how dire the situation is. It doesn't surprise me at all though because I'm from a family where savings, especially retirement savings, are unheard of. The mindset is that retirement savings = social security, and you just plan on working until you can't possible work any longer and then dying.

Here's the article but it is behind the paywall.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/states-take-aim-at-people-with-no-retirement-plan-11593945474?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1

I'm less familiar with the American SS program, but here in Canada, we have Old Age Security (OAS), which kicks in at age 65 for and pays approx $600 Cdn/month, or if that's all the income you have, then about $1200/month, including the Supplement. Try living on even 1200 a month here.  It can be done, but it's a sparse kind of life. It was implemented in 1927, when most people didn't live long enough to collect it.  I think the average life-span was about 64 then.  So it was expected that you worked until you died.  Now that life spans are much longer, the only logical step is to either have a laddered amount for deferring or mandated later starting date.

Or increase the amount that's saved into the program...
Remembering that the production per worker is magnitude(s) higher then it was 100 years ago, it should be no problem.
But absolute and relative are two different political beasts.

merula

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2574 on: July 09, 2020, 07:55:17 AM »
Can we please move the social security discussion to another thread, as has already been requested once before?

markbike528CBX

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2575 on: July 09, 2020, 09:08:56 AM »
Can we please move the social security discussion to another thread, as has already been requested once before?

I'd suggest we put the SS discussion in a black (orange) box, pack it it foam (to the extent that it isn't already) and watch it crash.

Freedomin5

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2576 on: July 09, 2020, 05:26:05 PM »
Let’s move this thread back on topic.

Many of our friends are expat teachers, and this year, everyone is stuck in China because you can’t get back in if you leave (due to borders being closed). The solution to teacher boredom appears to be “spend spend spend!”

One coworker (who frequently talks about not having enough money to pay basic water/electricity/gas bills, which btw are relatively inexpensive in China, went on a USD$70 street food tour. (You can get the foods for $15 if you walk 15 minutes down the street from our neighborhood.) Another one saw an ad for a USD$1500 week-long tour. They didn’t want to travel with strangers though, so they asked a travel agent to arrange a private tour. Granted, this person is not struggling financially and can well afford it. Others are enjoying a five-star beach vacation in Sanya, which, while it sounds excessive, is actually not that bad — about USD$2000 for a family of four to stay at a five-star beachfront resort, including flights.

Individually, each of these trips are not bad. It’s when you hear of the coworker who does ALL the trips that your face starts to meet your palm. 

dragoncar

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2577 on: July 10, 2020, 12:23:04 AM »
Can we please move the social security discussion to another thread, as has already been requested once before?

I'd suggest we put the SS discussion in a black (orange) box, pack it it foam (to the extent that it isn't already) and watch it crash.

Please move discussion of moving discussion to another thread to another thread.  But keep original off-topic discussion right here.

Gerard

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2578 on: July 10, 2020, 08:38:19 AM »
Please move discussion of moving discussion to another thread to another thread.  But keep original off-topic discussion right here.

I will pretend the site has a "like" button and I will pretend I'm hitting it now.

Davnasty

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2579 on: July 10, 2020, 01:07:24 PM »
Can we please move the social security discussion to another thread, as has already been requested once before?

I'd suggest we put the SS discussion in a black (orange) box, pack it it foam (to the extent that it isn't already) and watch it crash.

Please move (discussion of (moving discussion to another thread)) to another thread.  But keep original off-topic discussion right here.

Formula checks out

Just Joe

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2580 on: July 14, 2020, 08:43:51 AM »
Oh geez! What now - math? MATH on a finance forum? Get that out of here! ;)

talltexan

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2581 on: July 16, 2020, 11:39:36 AM »
Instead of shockingly simple math, this is suddenly turning into a serious examination of the associative property of algebra...I'm in!

brandon4454

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2582 on: July 16, 2020, 07:12:16 PM »
My coworker has a broken air conditioning and instead of repairing it she turns it down and blows it as hard as she can. This costs her $500 in electricity bills a month.

LennStar

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2583 on: July 17, 2020, 04:20:37 AM »
My coworker has a broken air conditioning and instead of repairing it she turns it down and blows it as hard as she can. This costs her $500 in electricity bills a month.
I don't even understand how many parts of this sentence I don't understand.

My best guess: She switched off the cooling and had the air-moving part run at max all the time, which somehow needs more electricity than the fans of a supercomputer?


PMG

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2584 on: July 17, 2020, 07:11:51 AM »
I read it as, the unit is broken, not cooling well but perhaps still cooling a little, so she turns the temperature down and turns the fan up.  This makes the unit work harder which costs more.   

 
« Last Edit: July 17, 2020, 07:14:56 AM by PMG »

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2585 on: July 17, 2020, 07:17:47 AM »
We just had a similar issue. Evaporator coil was leaking freon. The part (still under warranty) would have been about $650 plus another $650 or so for labor (not under warranty). At the minimum, she could refill the freon. Otherwise, the AC's motor is going to burn up, and that is going to be a much more expensive bill.

LennStar

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2586 on: July 17, 2020, 08:11:15 AM »
I read it as, the unit is broken, not cooling well but perhaps still cooling a little, so she turns the temperature down and turns the fan up.  This makes the unit work harder which costs more.
Eh.... you run something that is definitely broken in some way, which not only makes it likely to completely break down, costs you a lot of money, and also might be a high health risk too (gases, fire)??

EMERGENCY FACEPUNCHES PLEASE! WITH A BARBELL!

Just Joe

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2587 on: July 20, 2020, 07:31:47 AM »
Yeah the compressor will run continuously until it wrecks itself. That is the energy hog in an a/c unit.

Same as a person who hears a serious engine or transmission noise in their car but choose to drive it to destruction ensuring the maximum cost repair bill. Might have just required something little when they first heard the noise.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2588 on: July 20, 2020, 03:37:52 PM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.

It's also interesting that with the exception of one car, the owner of the business drives the least-valuable vehicle in the parking lot--an '03 Accord with >250k miles on it.  I think I'm pretty close, though, with my '95 Corolla with 234k. 

Goldielocks

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2589 on: July 20, 2020, 05:12:25 PM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.


Sad fact.   Some of them may be working 2 jobs (with limited time away from a job) or don't have great access to a kitchen at the room they rent, so default to buying food.

Hopefully the others are in a situation where they don't have to pay for rent and have a TON of disposable income.

Monerexia

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2590 on: July 20, 2020, 10:42:36 PM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.


Sad fact.   Some of them may be working 2 jobs (with limited time away from a job) or don't have great access to a kitchen at the room they rent, so default to buying food.

Hopefully the others are in a situation where they don't have to pay for rent and have a TON of disposable income.

Yep when i was a clueless undergrad i'd spend $10/day on coffee--and didn't think twice about food court constantly. Out of touch. Also, it takes a certain type of person to take the increment and get enthused about it. 1% matters, $5 matters. It's pattern recognition which is, as we know, IQ.

Imma

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2591 on: July 21, 2020, 03:33:21 AM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.


Sad fact.   Some of them may be working 2 jobs (with limited time away from a job) or don't have great access to a kitchen at the room they rent, so default to buying food.

Hopefully the others are in a situation where they don't have to pay for rent and have a TON of disposable income.

When I was young and working two jobs (about a decade ago) there was a period where I was eating fastfood for lunch every day. I knew that wasn't the healthiest choice but it was the only thing I could buy close to work. But I didn't eat breakfast or dinner at home because when I got home I literally fell asleep and didn't wake up until 15 minutes before I had to leave again. Sometimes I'd grab a snack on the way from one job to the other. And at that time I had a kitchen and I absolutely knew how to cook frugally and from scratch. I was just too tired to stand up by the time I got home, let alone to cook, eat and do dishes afterwards.

DadJokes

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2592 on: July 21, 2020, 04:52:34 AM »
I remember working 80-100 hour weeks after high school. I usually only slept at my apartment.

However, I worked for a convenience store, so I got free coffee and fountain drinks, as well as any of the deli food that was about to be thrown out (after sitting for four hours in a warmer).

It was a pretty sweet deal.

Imma

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2593 on: July 21, 2020, 05:04:45 AM »
I remember working 80-100 hour weeks after high school. I usually only slept at my apartment.

However, I worked for a convenience store, so I got free coffee and fountain drinks, as well as any of the deli food that was about to be thrown out (after sitting for four hours in a warmer).

It was a pretty sweet deal.

Mr Imma had exactly that job, at that age that's a perfect job. He still eats dinner at work 4 times a week and while that's procentually not as big a deal as free food in a minimum wage job, it's still a sweet deal. It's one reason our grocery spending is so low.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2594 on: July 21, 2020, 08:15:32 AM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.


Sad fact.   Some of them may be working 2 jobs (with limited time away from a job) or don't have great access to a kitchen at the room they rent, so default to buying food.

Hopefully the others are in a situation where they don't have to pay for rent and have a TON of disposable income.
I know many of them from a different social circle we share, so I know they have kitchens at home. Some are doing this job as a side gig, some are college or HS students. I know some are struggling financially, but I can't say for sure that they are the ones buying fast food.

PMG

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2595 on: July 21, 2020, 09:06:15 AM »
I’m guessing many of the lower paid employees didn’t go to college, but when I went, as a frugal, lunch packing adult it really made me sad how much younger students were pushed into the rat race lifestyle.  They were scheduled full, forced into meal plans, marketed to heavily and kept so busy and stressed out that they didn’t have a whole lot of time for any kind of self care. So, of course they’re going to finish college barely knowing how to grocery shop, and with a strong habit of rushing through fast food for every meal because that is exactly what they were taught, and what was sold to them.  Capitalism and our cultural norms sure set people up to be unhealthy and miserable.

There was also so much manufactured stress. All the professors would try to teach planning, would help students map out semester long projects and create work plans, but the admin and student life people would always be talking about “final stress!” And “all nighters!” And “Cramming!”  And planned so many really unhelpful events and activities around those themes.

This just keep going at work now, heaven forbid we actually finish a project on time without rushing and working late.

Why is stress so desirable!? 


spartana

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2596 on: July 21, 2020, 09:15:36 AM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.

It's also interesting that with the exception of one car, the owner of the business drives the least-valuable vehicle in the parking lot--an '03 Accord with >250k miles on it.  I think I'm pretty close, though, with my '95 Corolla with 234k.
My sister worked for a big defense contractor and it was the opposite. She said the almost all the engineers and executives ate every single meal out or did take-out including several Starbucks a day. The lower earners and tech generally brown bagged it.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2020, 02:51:33 PM by spartana »

talltexan

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2597 on: July 21, 2020, 09:58:26 AM »
At my workplace--when we return--it will be interesting to see whether the 400-foot elevator ride to street level causes a lot of people to rediscover bringing lunch from home.

markbike528CBX

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2598 on: July 21, 2020, 02:08:12 PM »
At my workplace--when we return--it will be interesting to see whether the 400-foot elevator ride to street level causes a lot of people to rediscover bringing lunch from home.

I see a bungee jump opportunity here!   :-)

I remember when I was young (1970's or so) and seeing a National Geographic of New Guinea guys doing a bungee jump (the tower flexed, not the vines to the feet) and thinking, that is a great idea for fun.
Fortunately, I had not hit terminal testosterone puberty yet, so I forgot about it until real  bungee jumping became a thing.

mm1970

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Re: Overheard at Work 2
« Reply #2599 on: July 21, 2020, 03:10:46 PM »
I have one:  the small business where I work employs a handful of engineers (expensive), and a bunch of people who assemble our products (at $10/hr).  It's interesting to note that the engineers (and management) always bring a sack lunch, or leftovers, or fruit for lunch, while fast food, takeout, or Starbucks are a common sight down in the assembly area.  The folks who can least afford it, it seems, are the ones who buy it most frequently.

It's also interesting that with the exception of one car, the owner of the business drives the least-valuable vehicle in the parking lot--an '03 Accord with >250k miles on it.  I think I'm pretty close, though, with my '95 Corolla with 234k.
My sister worked for a big defense contractor and it was the opposite. She said the almost all the engineers and executives ate every single meal out or did take-out including several Starbucks a day. The lower earners and tech generally brown bagged it.

This was my experience at my last company and this one too.  At both, I started a trend of brown bagging it for many.  I started eating in the lunch room (vs at my desk), so others joined me.  At both places, people would dig at me for packing a lunch.  Both times I told them the math of how much I saved.  And more people started packing lunch.

Quote
I know many of them from a different social circle we share, so I know they have kitchens at home. Some are doing this job as a side gig, some are college or HS students. I know some are struggling financially, but I can't say for sure that they are the ones buying fast food.

When I was in my 20s/early 30s, I ate out SO MUCH.  It was a social thing for me.  I would not be surprised if this is the case.