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Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-25-2004, 08:46 AM   #1
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Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

(Regarding Ted's latest post, #79 at
http://www.early-retirement.org/cgi-...62026;start=75 )

... and leave in a huff.

We've all seen our share of dramatic exits from discussion boards. The best ones were executed by those who were leaving for a destination, not those who were fleeing their current location. Ted, what's your destination?

The real test of commitment is staying because you believe that you have something to contribute despite disagreement & criticism. It's quite possible that you could improve the happiness & welfare of at least a minority of this board. Another reason to stay is for the possibility, however slight it may be, that you have something left to learn from this board. That's why I'm here.

If some outside event keeps you from contributing, Ted, then I guess you would have said so. And if you really wanted to leave on a high note to take care of more important commitments, then I guess you would have arranged that too. I'd hate to be left with the impression that you're leaving because you're unable to accept a helping of the criticism that you've so adeptly handed out. It would resemble the "dropping out" that you've been vilifying. And if the criticism on a discussion board is not worth your commitment, then I wish you well with public service-- it'll certainly retest your commitment more than this board ever could.

So if you're too steamed to contribute, then take a break and maybe we'll see you later. Your contributions could be better than ever.
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Ted, please don't go . . .
Old 02-25-2004, 12:31 PM   #2
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Ted, please don't go . . .

Dear Ted:

I hope you are still reading these messages. I was so sad when you said good-bye in your post that it brought a little tear to my eyes. (I'm serious).

Everytime I logged onto this forum, I would always look forward to any and all messages posted by you. I became a member of this forum less than a month ago when I started reading your posts, and I began to wonder who this "Ted" was that had such intelligent and informative posts. Everytime I logged onto this forum, I would always look forward to any all messages posted by you out of sheer respect and gratitude for the brainpower you contributed to this forum. I have also gone back and read all your past posts. I have taken many courses in business, economics, and finance at the University of Washington, but none of them compare with the education I have received through reading your posts. You have contributed so much insight, analysis, and depth of knowledge.

I can't speak for others, but I am quite sure there are many other members and guests on this forum who feel the same way.

So, please, please come back. You will be sorely missed if you don't. But if you don't, I just wanted to express my appreciation for all the good you have done. Thank you, Ted.

Sincerely,

Toejam
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-25-2004, 02:07 PM   #3
 
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Ditto the above post!!
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-25-2004, 02:28 PM   #4
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

It reflects very poorly upon us that Ted should wish to leave. He has been an outstanding contributor. We need to make an extra effort to make these boards more pleasant in the future.

Have fun.

John R.
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Re: Ted, please don't go . . .
Old 02-25-2004, 10:06 PM   #5
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Re: Ted, please don't go . . .

Quote:
Dear Ted:

I hope you are still reading these messages. *I was so sad when you said good-bye in your post that it brought a little tear to my eyes. (I'm serious).
Me too, Ted. I haven't felt this bad since Mother Teresa died.
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 10:56 AM   #6
 
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Wow, Ted is gone Whoda thunk it? Next you'll tell
me Elvis is dead. Seriously folks, Ted and I are a bit
outspoken, but hey.........I love this board and will miss Ted. Now Cut-throat is another story Just kidding.

I was thinking about these PC/courtesy/tolerance-
for-others-opinions issues the other night. I belong to
Mensa (25+ years) and was out with a group for dinner.
I had a delightful time even though we strayed into
politics. I tend to dominate such discussions and since
my politics are on the "lunatic fringe" for most folks, it
got lively. But, that just makes it more fun as long as
you have a thick skin and/or don't take yourself too
seriously. Anyway, I found Ted quite readable and
interesting, so I too hope that he returns to "the
friendly confines".

John Galt
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 12:52 PM   #7
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Ah there you are John, I was just going to call the President and send out the dogs to look for you. Where have you been?

With regards to JWR1945's comments, this is one of the nicest boards I've participated in. In fact I looked through several others and found them to be populated with mostly unpleasant and unconstructive/non-contributory folks. I dont see any behavior that needs changing.

Ted seems to feel that early retirement is fundamentally wrong. As such, I'm not sure why he would spend time participating in an ER board.

Anyhow, I know the other places he posts, so he's not that hard to find.
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Thanks for the kind words.
Old 02-26-2004, 01:48 PM   #8
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Thanks for the kind words.

It shouldn't be too surprising that I've been somewhat involved in politics throughout my adult life, and as I have said before, the national political leader that I most admire is John McCain.

An interesting thing that I have observed about politics at the local level is that people who are very similar demographically, and vote predominantly the same way in national elections, can fight like cats and dogs over relatively trivial local issues, such as whether or not to erect a stop sign at a particular intersection.

I tend to be somewhat combative verbally, and generally enjoy debating people, provided that they are sufficiently intelligent to recognize the difference between facts and opinions, and share my basic value judgment (opinion) that people should have the right to do as they wish, as long as it doesn't substantially harm others. I agree with Winston Churchill's statement to the effect that "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not to their own facts."

Well, some of the principal facts that I understand better than most people relate to economics. And one of those facts, which Alan Greenspan recognized just yesterday in calling for paring back future social security benefits, is that people who retire totally represent a drain on the economy.

That's not to say that retirement is morally wrong. That's a value judgment and I don't think that it is "wrong" and have explicitly said that. But ever since my very first post in this forum, in which I said that I was involuntarily an "early retiree" at age 57, I have agreed with the most respected leaders in American history in believing that contributing to society throughout one's life -- whether through a regular job or through volunteer work -- is more commendable than just "dropping out." It is certainly ironic that I am being criticized for speaking of "dropping out" of this forum, by people who have "dropped out" of something a lot more important -- the American workforce.

As in the case of most jobs, a person tends to get "burned out" in forums like this, with the feeling that a lot of topics that were covered previously are being rehashed.

But my main motivation for quitting was my tendency to get too involved in arguments with a minority of posters who could be termed "cybersauers" -- highly aggressive people with reactionary political ideas and no tolerance for any others. In a variation of Gresham's Law (that "bad" money drives out good) these cybersauers often manage to drive more intelligent, open-minded participants away from forums.

And then I was reminded of the saying (which should have been coined by Mark Twain but apparently was not) "Never argue with a fool, because listeners can't tell which is which." Well, that saying has turned out not to be entirely true, because a lot of you have been thoughtful enough to indicate that you actually can tell the difference.

So, I thank those of you who did express an interest in my views, and will drop by occasionally to throw in one of my thoughts that may superficially appear to be "outside the box," but upon thoughtful examination are generally pretty consistent with mainstream American values.

Ted

P.S. Whomever TH thinks is me posting in other places is just some nut using my name.
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 03:05 PM   #9
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

I think I may have just been insulted, but I'm not sure.

What is a sauer? (Used in a sentence: "the cybersauers rejoiced after a hard day's work recycling condoms and dental floss.")
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 04:42 PM   #10
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

I think cybersauer is French for "dryer sheet".
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 04:45 PM   #11
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

I'm going to guess the application is for the german 'sauer' meaning to sour or acidify.

I'm not particularly sure who got insulted. I havent seen any of these pitched political discussions, except perhaps for the one on guns but that didnt really go anywhere unpleasant. The only acidic comments I've seen made were telling people to go to planned parenthood or stop being retired because its the wrong thing to do. :-/ I would imagine that most of the stay-at-home moms and dads are relatively insulted at the implication that their lives are non-contributory.

But to stay on topic...

As an economist, and looking more than one step past the "guy leaves his job to retire early, guy is useless" dimension of thinking, lets look at this in a systemic manner?

When I left my job, someone who was looking to move up got it. Someone else got theirs. Somewhere at the end of that line, the company either hired someone else to work in the mailroom or they managed to do without the extra headcount. In the former case, my ER allowed a (probably) harder to employ person to get a job and get off the welfare/unemployment/living with mom and dad merry-go-round. In the latter case the company improved its bottom line productivity and hence its profitability, to the benefit of the company and its investors. Worst case someone employable that couldnt find the right job jumped into the middle of the "move upward".

I dont think theres a third option to be had, but I'm all ears.

In the meanwhile, I've put my acquired monies to work in stocks and bonds, taking piece ownerships in many businesses all over the world, and loaning money to companies and governments to fulfill programs. I've also continued to consume goods and services that improved the overall health of our economy. Certainly at a level superior of that to the mailroom guy that got his new job.

Further, I am free to spend more time with friends and family (and my dogs) to our relationships mutual benefit.

Lastly, we all get to spend time in places like this, providing and receiving help and advice on our lives, our investments, etc. Think of all the money that would have unnecessarily gone to investment planners, and all the wasted dryer sheets.

I know there isnt a zero sum game to be had here, and I also know that each and every word I just wrote can be contended with, discussed endlessly, and a lot learned. All this while maintaining our moral character and without needing to bestow or withdraw 'respect' for each other.

I'm also going to have a talk with that "Ted" character over at the fundalarm forum. He has way too much in common with you and its high time one of you differentiated from the other. Since I saw the Ted here before the Ted there, as far as I'm concerned you've already locked up the brand.
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.Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 05:00 PM   #12
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.Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Oh, sauer as in sauerkraut. So, cybersauer would be a 1/2 greek 1/2 german monster? Ted, that term is, erhm, megagauche!
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 05:45 PM   #13
 
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

You Guy's just crack me up!!!
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-26-2004, 06:01 PM   #14
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Quote:
You Guy's just crack me up!!!
Hey! I used to like your tv show. I was ticked when they cancelled it.
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-27-2004, 03:10 PM   #15
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

I figured that my last post would draw negative responses from the saurheads on this forum. *

If the gimmee cap fits, wear it.
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-27-2004, 03:48 PM   #16
 
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Ted,

I always valued your posts and respected your investment advice. I don't always agree with your political opinions, but very few people agree with mine

I hope I am not one of the saur heads that you refer to, but I think you contribute a lot here and I hope that you'll stick around for future questions that I may have.

Good Luck!
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-27-2004, 11:31 PM   #17
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Quote:
If the gimmee cap fits, wear it.
Swap you for your Walt Brown cap.
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-28-2004, 05:05 AM   #18
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Quote:
Ted,

I hope I am not one of the saur heads that you refer to, but I think you contribute a lot here and I hope that you'll stick around for future questions that I may have.
Heck no. I certainly enjoy discussions with people who have different opinions, as long as they don't become belligerent about it. And I certainly defer to you on matters involving fly fishing. 8)
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-28-2004, 08:45 AM   #19
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

I'm glad to see we have reached some common ground here. Everybody agrees that retiring to a life of fly fishing is a worthy pursuit. Sure, the economic benefits are slim, but the number of fly fishing early retirees doesn't even register as economic noise.

And we all respect the "art of play" epitomized by fly fishing. Catching a big fish probably isn't a giant leap for mankind, but we can all appreciate the skills needed and the primordial humanity of that man vs nature connection.

Now if we can all just refrain from name calling and ad hominem attacks, I'm sure the sauerheads and gimme-cap wearers will be able to peaceably coexist with the rest of us reasonable folk

(Welcome home, Ted.)
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...
Old 02-28-2004, 09:32 AM   #20
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Re: Ted, anyone can pick up their marbles...

Quote:
. . . Now if we can all just refrain from name calling and ad hominem attacks, I'm sure the sauerheads and gimme-cap wearers will be able to peaceably coexist with the rest of us reasonable folk *

(Welcome home, Ted.)
Does this mean that Ted is back and we don't even have to raise the money for that box of dryer sheet?
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