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View Poll Results: $300k And You
I'm Doing Just Fine 8 6.56%
A Quarter Or Less 27 22.13%
Less Than Half 15 12.30%
Half 16 13.11%
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All That Plus A Bag Of Chips 46 37.70%
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:19 AM   #121
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This thread has taken an unfortunate turn for the worse; it almost feels like the professor is back...
I agree !
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:21 AM   #122
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This thread has taken an unfortunate turn for the worse; it almost feels like the professor is back...
OFGS!
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:32 AM   #123
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These sentiments are very frequently expressed in song. "Money can't buy back... your youth when you're old....or a friend when you're lonely...or a love that's grown cold..."

IMO quite possibly at least partially untrue, and definitely a non-sequiter. It's like saying beauty doesn't make you smart. So? At least you are dumb and beautiful rather than both dumb and ugly.

I can't think of one problem that is made worse by having money, and lots of it.

Ha
Did I say that I wanted no additional money?

How else do I look at my stocks several times a day?

Though I never will get to that wealth level, I would still want to try that "ultimate" bottle of Cognac with 250 flavors , even though my allergy rhinitis would keep me from detecting even 2!

I was saying that after reaching a certain point in one's networth, most people would find something other than the lack of money to complain or worry about. And that level is generally lower than having $300K/yr at one's disposal.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:28 AM   #124
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Wow. A real divergent set of views. One of the things I've learned by participating in this and other forums is the apparent bifurcation of views in North American society. No wonder our politicians are so unimpressive.
A little bit of tolerance and appreciation that it takes many kinds of people to make a society would by useful. There are very many wealthy people in the US but not surprisingly they are a tiny minority here. Envy or disdain will not make such people feel very welcome. If you want a diverse set of ideas presented on this forum I would recommend a civilized and tolerant approach.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:40 AM   #125
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Wow. A real divergent set of views. One of the things I've learned by participating in this and other forums is the apparent bifurcation of views in North American society. No wonder our politicians are so unimpressive.
A little bit of tolerance and appreciation that it takes many kinds of people to make a society would by useful. There are very many wealthy people in the US but not surprisingly they are a tiny minority here. Envy or disdain will not make such people feel very welcome. If you want a diverse set of ideas presented on this forum I would recommend a civilized and tolerant approach.
Well, that's pretty easy for you to say, rich guy...
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:42 AM   #126
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I like to think I could be happy for him that he has something he enjoys, but I might struggle with being at a meal where he spends $XXX on a bottle of wine. I'd be thinking "man, he just drank my new tv..."
If I hired a lawyer that bought a $xxx bottle during a lunch with me, I'd ask that my bill for services be debited 10x that amount.

And I love that not many folks on here feel the need to brag about their wealth, and quite to the contrary, they often deliberately under emphasize their wealth in most discussions.

Let's face it, with North of $200,000,000, I am careful never to mention my superior fortunes in any discussion.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:46 AM   #127
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If I hired a lawyer that bought a $xxx bottle during a lunch with me, I'd ask that my bill for services be debited 10x that amount.

If the cost of your representation was that important to you, you wouldn't be hiring that lawyer. You'd be working with someone from one of those flyover state law schools who was willing to meet you at a Perkins.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:53 AM   #128
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I hate to disappoint you, but here are some other things that I need:
  • an endless supply of red Chateauneuf-du-Pape ('00, '05 and '07 vintages)
  • one red "SL" class Mercedes-Benz convertible (any old vintage will do)
  • one city club devoid of people with class-based resentment and hostility
  • one comfortable apartment less than one mile from my one comfortable office
  • one tennis court at one country house adjoining one country club
  • 15-20 Brioni suits
I didn't need any these things in the distant past. Came to enjoy all of them immensely and do need them now.
Maybe we agree more than you think. I took your first post to say that people with after tax incomes of $200k or more (apparently much more), can't save. I intended to respond that if they think they can't save, it's because they've converted things that most Americans consider luxuries into perceived necessities. I think you've made it very plain here that's exactly what happens, and you can see that it has happened to you (the last line I copied).

You've also explained one mechanism that makes this happen. Simply spend as much time as possible with other people in the same income level and these common words will acquire new meanings. Another mechanism is working with people who judge legal competence by analyzing personal consumption expenditures.

I understand how words can change meanings like this. There are things I consider necessities that my grandfather never saw.

The difference is that you brought up taxes. That wasn't the original point of the thread, which was simply whether people could imagine themselves spending at your level. I don't think that taxes have anything to do with the change in perception and the resulting difficulty in saving.

If the tax rates on all your colleagues were zero, they would simply spend more on consumer goods and be around other people who spend more. As a result their definitions of necessities would ratchet up another step, and they still wouldn't be able to save.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:54 AM   #129
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-- whether or not Billy and Muffy are enrolled in tony schools and whether or not dad buys his suits at Brooks Brothers.
Ok, now you really messed up. Brooks Brothers is so completely nowhere! Suit pants that are too short, button collared pastel shirts and rep ties... Aiii!

Ha
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:54 AM   #130
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IMO quite possibly at least partially untrue, and definitely a non-sequiter. It's like saying beauty doesn't make you smart. So? At least you are dumb and beautiful rather than both dumb and ugly.
Most definitely - and of course there are plenty of people who are both beautiful and smart. Oh, the horror - how dare they!


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I can't think of one problem that is made worse by having money, and lots of it.
How about personal insecurity? Lots of money can lead to attempts to buy friends and favor. Instead of building personal connections; insecure folk can use money to build a wall around themselves.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:57 AM   #131
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Most definitely - and of course there are plenty of people who are both beautiful and smart. Oh, the horror - how dare they.




How about personal insecurity? Lots of money can lead to attempts to buy friends and favor, instead of building personal connections; insecure folk can use money to build a wall around themselves.
True enough, but I really doubt that money creates or intensifies personal insecurity. As far as buying favor (not friends or lovers), why not? As long as the rich person is centered and can separate other people's reactions to him versus their reactions to his money, I see no problem with smoothing one's way by tipping well, driving a nice car, maybe doing some political contributions and basically greasing the wheels with a few bucks. It raises your testosterone to have people fawning over you, and high testosterone is good. Lowers your cortisol too, and low cortisol is also good.

I have always been OK financially, but not rich. But I have family and friends who are rich. They don't seem insecure to me. I doubt that money would cure a deep insecurity, but I also doubt that it could cause it. A lot more poor people are insecure, and with good reason. Their lives are insecure, relatively speaking. That is why in nice upper middle class areas people smile at you while in poor areas they often don't.

Although people often deny many of these things, every day a new social psychology study comes out that supports the idea that "surface" and social pecking order really counts in many ways, not the least of which is health. Even where there is a National Health system like the NHS in UK. Well off people living in well off neighborhoods live longer than well off people living in poorer neighborhoods, and also longer than less well off people no matter where they live, even if everyone uses the NHS.

Ha
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:58 AM   #132
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So long as the lawyer provides the value I pay for, they can burn the money for all I care. It's not mine anymore.
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:38 AM   #133
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If the cost of your representation was that important to you, you wouldn't be hiring that lawyer. You'd be working with someone from one of those flyover state law schools who was willing to meet you at a Perkins.
Would Perkins allow me in wearing shorts, a T-shirt with "Addidas" on the front and some cheap flip flops with beach sand on them?
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:46 AM   #134
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I would think it is safe to say that while the majority of posters here is above the median in the wealth scale of Western countries, not too many are in the decamillionaire range and above. And people would not be green with jealousy of richer people; they simply find wealth flaunting distasteful.

And as I have been joking around (even my close friends have said that they often could not tell if I was serious or not), I feel that I need to clarify something about my earlier posts.

I mentioned the expensive Cognac, whose $15K original price has escalated up to as much as $100K on the after-market, as an example of how the super rich people can spend a lot of money on something that quickly reaches the diminishing return point. As for me, if I really crave this liquor, actually being curious is a better phrase, I would have tried something less expensive first, such as the more common $1500 bottles of XO.

Proportionally, I should be able to afford that $1500 bottle. I know people commonly spend more than a few $K a year on just beer, and as I do not drink much, such a lesser bottle would fit in my budget. However, being a frugal LBYM'er all my life, I still wonder if a $1500 bottle would be that good, and then, if I could tell the difference from the $150 bottles I have had. Thought I would try that for my 50th birthday, but then I even forgot about my birthdays! The truth is that these days, there is not anything that I crave. I do not have a bucket list!

So, back to the OP post, it is true that the LBYM nature is somewhat ingrained in some people like myself. Reading that even billionaires like Buffet are affected by this makes us feel good that we are not alone.

And yes, I think I can spend $300K/yr if I somehow have that money, but only if the SWR is a really low value. After all, a luxury once sampled becomes a necessity, and going back to being a pedestrian is going to be tough.
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:55 AM   #135
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My, such intense resentment and even hostility....

Obviously elite schooling is not a "necessity of life" for you or yours. But it is for me and mine. Put another way, for this purchase your want would appear to be my need. Or maybe you will say you "wouldn't want to go to one of those fancy-pants, sissified colleges anyway," which would say nothing about MY wants or needs, or about how hard I will work to provide for my children (and their children).




I hate to disappoint you, but here are some other things that I need:
  • an endless supply of red Chateauneuf-du-Pape ('00, '05 and '07 vintages)
  • one red "SL" class Mercedes-Benz convertible (any old vintage will do)
  • one city club devoid of people with class-based resentment and hostility
  • one comfortable apartment less than one mile from my one comfortable office
  • one tennis court at one country house adjoining one country club
  • 15-20 Brioni suits
I didn't need any these things in the distant past. Came to enjoy all of them immensely and do need them now.

Will be able to dispense with the Brioni suits once retired. As explained elsewhere, they are needless then. Will continue to need the rest.

Some won't "approve" of all this, but thankfully I don't need them to OK it. My hunch is that Danmar will "get it" and approve.

P.S. That's why people like me need a city club such as described above: so as to socialize with others who get it, out of sight of the resentment and hostility of those who don't.

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all from downtown Chicago! Slainte!
I think there are certain "requirements" of lawyers in the Loop area, one is that you dress for success, drive a luxury car, and belong to a country club. How else are you going to get clients in Chicago? It's amazing, I am 90 miles north of you, Milwaukee area, and I know some very successful lawyers that don't do any of that....probably due to cultural differences.

Of course, most of our lawyers up her and UW and Marquette grads, maybe they can't play ball with big city guys like you..........
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:00 PM   #136
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.

I can't think of one problem that is made worse by having money, and lots of it.

Ha
No, but I can think of plenty of problems that money can't make easier .
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:03 PM   #137
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No, but I can think of plenty of problems that money can't make easier .
Definitely, which is why I phrased it like I did. Some things just really suck, but they happened, and there is no way to mitigate them or influence their course.

Ha
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:15 PM   #138
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I can't think of one problem that is made worse by having money, and lots of it.

Ha
I can. The problem of relatives and friends wanting handouts seems to increase exponentially when a person has lots of money.

I don't recall all the particulars but the LA Times had an article about 7 years ago about winners of the CA lottery and how their lives had been affected. Adjusting for the fact that the article was written to titillate, there were some pretty sad outcomes.
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:36 PM   #139
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True enough, but I really doubt that money creates or intensifies personal insecurity. As far as buying favor (not friends or lovers), why not? As long as the rich person is centered and can separate other people's reactions to him versus their reactions to his money, I see no problem with smoothing one's way by tipping well, driving a nice car, maybe doing some political contributions and basically greasing the wheels with a few bucks. It raises your testosterone to have people fawning over you, and high testosterone is good. Lowers your cortisol too, and low cortisol is also good.

I have always been OK financially, but not rich. But I have family and friends who are rich. They don't seem insecure to me. I doubt that money would cure a deep insecurity, but I also doubt that it could cause it. A lot more poor people are insecure, and with good reason. Their lives are insecure, relatively speaking. That is why in nice upper middle class areas people smile at you while in poor areas they often don't.

Although people often deny many of these things, every day a new social psychology study comes out that supports the idea that "surface" and social pecking order really counts in many ways, not the least of which is health. Even where there is a National Health system like the NHS in UK. Well off people living in well off neighborhoods live longer than well off people living in poorer neighborhoods, and also longer than less well off people no matter where they live, even if everyone uses the NHS.

Ha
Perhaps you're right on this one, Ha. Even in the case of a hapless and insecure person who suddenly comes into a lot of money and cannot handle it, you could argue that the money hasn't increased his insecurities - just given him many more ways in which to screw up.

The social time I've spent with wealthy people is limited. Most of them have been people I worked for, but what I have seen of them leads me to believe that they are generally pretty happy people. The fellow who owns the company I worked for for a long time is extremely wealthy, and also seems very engaged and full of life.

I have no problem with people discussing how much money they make, either in this forum or in real life. I don't begrudge a wealthy person his money because I know that his ability to make money doesn't preclude me from doing the same.

And as for your last paragraph about well-off folk living longer, even in a country with nationalized healthcare - perhaps it's all that extra testosterone from buying favors?
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Old 03-18-2011, 12:39 PM   #140
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I can. The problem of relatives and friends wanting handouts seems to increase exponentially when a person has lots of money.

I don't recall all the particulars but the LA Times had an article about 7 years ago about winners of the CA lottery and how their lives had been affected. Adjusting for the fact that the article was written to titillate, there were some pretty sad outcomes.
True enough. But most people get their money either by working for it and therefore valuing it highly, or being born into it and getting some training in how to deal with it.

I think the crazy behavior of lottery winners and some athletes is related to that they are neither of these things. Of course there are some disasters among children of wealthy clans too. But the world is full of disasters, and most of these people are not rich!

Ha
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