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Old 10-29-2010, 07:43 AM   #21
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So as it regards retirement self funding, whether it's a matter of choice or just good fortune is very debatable.

In America, if you've managed to save enough for retirement throughout your working life, you're the exception.
+1

And let me add that being the "exception" doesn't make you "exceptional" -- as those behind door #1 quite often believe.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:00 AM   #22
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Which outcome would you like?
There's a myth in US culture that life depends entirely on personal choices. Were it only that simple.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:26 AM   #23
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There's a myth in US culture that life depends entirely on personal choices. Were it only that simple.
Yup.

If I had heard that "test" when I graduated from HS I would have rolled my eyes and moved on with real life.

The problem is that people aren't taking the same damn test.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:47 AM   #24
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There's a myth in US culture that life depends entirely on personal choices. Were it only that simple.
You are correct to a point. That point is, there is a time for a person to decide what they want and go after it. If I hadn't done that 20 years ago I'd still be driving a garbage truck, living in a rented shack, and barely getting by. If I hadn't been able to convince my first sheriff, police chief, district manager, and some nameless board members in Washington that I was the best option for the job my life would be very different. It was ultimately up to them to decide if I was going to get the job, but I did my job and they chose me. So in the end, I decided to do something about my situation and was able to convince other people to believe in me and as a result I now make a very good living doing something that is somewhat enjoyable, complex (I'll never learn everything there is with my job), and challenging. This plays out everyday in almost every country in the world.
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Old 10-29-2010, 08:50 AM   #25
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TikiToast had a slightly different impression of him a few years ago:
Keeping it Simple...Ben Stein...
I don't know the guy personally. Just reciting what I know about him. I have met him and talked with him in a small group setting for probably 20 minutes or so and that is it. This was during law school when our little conservative students group hired him to speak about constitutional law.

I left with the impression that I'm sure much of the public has - smart guy with a bit of arrogance. I don't think he tries to hide his arrogance and in fact it is part of his shtick (see, for example, Win Ben Stein's Money). Looks like tikitoast was on the bitter receiving end of ample amounts of arrogance.
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Old 10-29-2010, 09:11 AM   #26
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I really don't have much use for anyone part of the Nixon syndicate.
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Old 10-29-2010, 09:38 AM   #27
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There's a myth in US culture that life depends entirely on personal choices. Were it only that simple.

True, but personal choices have a lot to do with how most people turn out... almost everybody I know are the the range of where you think they would be with the choices they made...

So the guy who always thought he should be given a job... who hated bosses telling him what to do etc. etc.... has three kids he can not take care of and has been living at his parents house nor working for the past 20 to 25 years.... his 'choices'....

When I was young, I was not interested in getting a good job etc... but then changed my mind, went back to school, graduated with honors... got jobs etc... and now have a good life... sure, there were times when things were not going like I wanted, but I would then make changes to (as my wife would say) 'reach my final destination'....
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Old 10-29-2010, 09:55 AM   #28
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TikiToast had a slightly different impression of him a few years ago:
Keeping it Simple...Ben Stein...
I don't see any reason why being a jerk personally is mutually exclusive with providing wisdom, sound advice or interestingly framed scenarios as with the OP's post. History is full of examples of brilliant people that were deviants in many ways. The two may even be related but not necessarily always from a negative point of view.
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Old 10-29-2010, 10:04 AM   #29
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The other thing is this- TikiToast is one woman. A well spoken, articulate and apparently completely sane woman, but still...
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:35 AM   #30
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I don't see any reason why being a jerk personally is mutually exclusive with providing wisdom, sound advice or interestingly framed scenarios as with the OP's post. History is full of examples of brilliant people that were deviants in many ways. The two may even be related but not necessarily always from a negative point of view.

True... I think the OP should be kind of an eye opener for a lot of people... it is a pretty direct way to get you thinking... which way do I want to go... and it should be this way to get someone thinking...

In reality, there are a lot more doors between 1 and 2... and most of us end up in one of them...
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Old 10-29-2010, 12:49 PM   #31
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True, but personal choices have a lot to do with how most people turn out... almost everybody I know are the the range of where you think they would be with the choices they made...

So the guy who always thought he should be given a job... who hated bosses telling him what to do etc. etc.... has three kids he can not take care of and has been living at his parents house nor working for the past 20 to 25 years.... his 'choices'....

When I was young, I was not interested in getting a good job etc... but then changed my mind, went back to school, graduated with honors... got jobs etc... and now have a good life... sure, there were times when things were not going like I wanted, but I would then make changes to (as my wife would say) 'reach my final destination'....
Well...Mom and Dad told me if I screwed up they'd pound the crap out of me. I guess it was a choice...
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:11 PM   #32
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The only problem with this is that Bill Maher is one of the world's biggest idiots, and he is nasty to boot.
They (Maher & Stein) are both amusing, nothing more...
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:24 PM   #33
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Columbia undergrad, Yale Law School grad, lawyer, law school professor (recent professorial posting on this board notwithstanding), former presidential speechwriter and an entertaining speaker.
Maybe entertaining speaker, but what does the rest have to do with not being an idiot.
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Old 10-29-2010, 01:32 PM   #34
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Maybe entertaining speaker, but what does the rest have to do with not being an idiot.
Well, as someone who was denied admittance to Yale Law School, I'd like to think that it takes at least a modicum of intelligence to get in to the place. Otherwise it makes me a real big idiot!

And as for law professors, I always thought mine were very intelligent. At least they did not fall into the "idiot" category. I disagreed with virtually all of them on their politics, but that doesn't make them idiots.
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Old 10-29-2010, 02:19 PM   #35
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Well, as someone who was denied admittance to Yale Law School, I'd like to think that it takes at least a modicum of intelligence to get in to the place. Otherwise it makes me a real big idiot!
Are you wearing a "KICK ME!!" sign today, or are you just hoping that we'll help you add to your collection of lawyer jokes?

Yale Law School, intelligence, lawyers, idiots... way too easy.
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Old 10-29-2010, 02:53 PM   #36
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Are you wearing a "KICK ME!!" sign today, or are you just hoping that we'll help you add to your collection of lawyer jokes?

Yale Law School, intelligence, lawyers, idiots... way too easy.
I'm always in the mood for lawyer jokes. I've been thinking about dropping the law license anyway, so maybe this will push me over the edge.
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Old 10-29-2010, 03:06 PM   #37
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I'm always in the mood for lawyer jokes. I've been thinking about dropping the law license anyway, so maybe this will push me over the edge.
I have never noticed any lawyers who were idiots. It may take a while to cotton the usual lawyer personality, but they are not stupid, they are not naive, and they are not slackers.

Think twice before giving up your badge, Fuego. I have known a few guys who did an ESR, by doing some services for other lawyers and other low prestige but reasonably well paid work. A lot better than McDonald's anyway.

Ha
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Old 10-29-2010, 03:31 PM   #38
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Think twice before giving up your badge, Fuego. I have known a few guys who did an ESR, by doing some services for other lawyers and other low prestige but reasonably well paid work. A lot better than McDonald's anyway.
I don't really use the law license professionally. It is expensive and a hassle to maintain. 2 days of continuing education a year at a minimum. The resume will still say member of bar of state XX (inactive) since I'm technically petitioning the bar to become an inactive member. It is not a permanent decision. Agreed on the "no dumb lawyer" comment. Plenty of law school grads (probably not from Yale) may not be the brightest, but the bar exam usually weeds them out. And two of my friends/high school classmates who graduated from Yale law school are pretty high up there on the list of the brightest people I know.
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Old 10-29-2010, 11:48 PM   #39
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I don't really use the law license professionally. It is expensive and a hassle to maintain. 2 days of continuing education a year at a minimum.
It seems difficult to throw away a bird in the hand, especially if you could semi-ER to find a legal firm willing to hire you for a few extra hours a month of gruntwork in exchange for paying your fees.

BTW the bar exam doesn't weed out all the dumb lawyers. I had the misfortune of working with two military officers who retired to get their law degrees. (One of them used to convene his law-school study group in his office at the command during working hours... but it kept him out of our hair so that was actually a good thing.) Book smart does not equate to common sense, and I think a substantial minority of lawyers would benefit from a little dose of good engineering practice.
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Old 10-30-2010, 08:45 AM   #40
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It seems difficult to throw away a bird in the hand, especially if you could semi-ER to find a legal firm willing to hire you for a few extra hours a month of gruntwork in exchange for paying your fees.
Not so easy. Partly it is because of malpractice issues. The firm would have to carry him on their policy. Their deductible may be pretty high (think $50,000 or thereabouts) and so he is automatically an additional risk. He would not be able to do legal work outside the purview of the firm. Continuing education and licensing is pricey and is a nuisance for a firm to monitor. He would have to be educated and monitored on all sorts of firm policies, such as trust accounts. Unless he is bringing in a significant amount of money he isn't worth the risk and the bother. It is far easier of him to go on inactive status.

I have kept my Minnesota license but I went inactive in other states where I was licensed because of these factors. In most states you can reactivate by taking a bunch of legal education courses and paying a bunch of money.
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