Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The NY Daily News' Great Article On The New Hampshire Primary

I gotta say that this article in the New York Daily News is absolutely brilliant, witty, and also terribly depressing.  But they nailed it when summarizing the spectacle of Donald Trump's presidential candidacy. 
"Clueless New Hampshire voters handed billionaire bore Donald Trump a “yuge” victory in the first-in-the nation primary Tuesday, providing the mad mogul with a new round of ammo a week after a disappointing second-place finish in Iowa." 
Then it goes further with the substance-free campaign claims he's been giving for the past year, back when everyone thought it was just a joke.
"We are going to make America great again, but we're going to do it the old-fashioned way," he said as an excited crowd chanted, "USA, USA." "Were going to beat China, Japan, Mexico. 
"We are going to do something so fast, and so good, and so strong. The world is going to respect us again, believe me," he added, going on to double down on a handful of familiar promises. 
“I am going to be the greatest jobs president that God ever created,” he said. “We’re going to build a wall, it’s going to be built … It’s not even a difficult thing to do."
Excuse me for being cynical, but this stuff sounds like the speech a high school football coach gives his players during halftime.

Sadly, people respond to this stuff.

Give Trump credit because he's a billionaire who knows how to connect with regular football-watching Americans, or people he's never associated with in his entire life.  But, he's truly a genius at selling his brand of Donald Trump, which strangely appeals to people.

And it makes no sense to me.  Nor to the NY Daily News.

Full Frontal's Funny Jeb Bush Sketch - Must See!

I can't add anything to the brilliance of this skit.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Bend Roundabout Road Rage

One of the great things about living in Bend is the traffic roundabouts all over town. They make it pretty easy to navigate to any place within 5-10 minutes.  But they also create moments of unintentional poor driving judgment by people entering the roundabout in front of another car with the right-of-way already inside the roundabout.

A couple of nights ago, I was running along Mt. Washington and from behind me heard the blaring horn that could only come from a roundabout infraction.   Instead of just a quick beep, the driver blaring their horn continued and sped up to within 15 feet of the small car that had probably cut in front of them inside the roundabout.  

It was ridiculous and the tailgating, blaring horn driver was being a total jerk.  Get over it.  It was probably a momentary lapse in judgment by the other driver.  We've all been there in our roundabout experience.  We've cut in too soon or been cut off by another driver who jumped in front of us, causing for a momentary dangerous driving moment.  It happens to all of us.  

But to blare the horn and tailgate another driver or something that might happen once every six months is completely stupid.  Just give a "Serenity Now!" and move on.  

Sunday, February 7, 2016

The American Dream Of Getting Rich Quick

When I was younger I wanted to be very rich and I wanted it to happen overnight.  Every time I tried taking a shortcut, I was sent back to the very beginning to pay my dues until I learned the lessons that I was supposed to learn.  Since I can be pretty hard-headed, this period lasted about fifteen years, starting when I was 22 years old and going to age 37.  

Eventually though, I started to realize that I couldn't always make things happen overnight.  Patience was the virtue that I needed to embrace.  And this was pretty hard for someone with higher than average ambition to accept. 

But now, patience is something I'm pretty comfortable with.  If things don't happen overnight or on the schedule I wanted it to happen - oh well.  In due time, I'll get the result I wanted or I'll get the result I was supposed to get.  

In my day job of doing short-term private money loans for real estate investors and talking to aspiring real estate investors, I get to hear my past, present, and future self when talking to clients about the projects that they need financed.  I like these conversations.  They're the older and wiser conversations by people (me and the clients) who've been at it for a good length of time and have learned many of the tough lessons that come only with experience.  

On the flip side, I often get to listen to my former self when aspiring house flippers call asking about financing.  They have more than enough ambition to become a success.  Unfortunately, they haven't put in the time, don't have enough money, and won’t trust the little voice in their head telling them to not do the deal.  (I ignored this voice on two deals and have spent about $150,000 over five years paying off the hard money loans with a personal guaranty all because I didn't listen to my voice of reason). 

I hear desperation in the voices of aspiring house flippers.  I hear them idolizing someone else that they think is really successful at the business.  Chances are, the person being idolized is over-leveraged and taking on way too many projects than they can handle and if/when the market flattens or declines, will be in a tough financial spot.  

It's nice to have nearly come full circle by paying the price in time and money for the mistakes that I made in my twenties.  I've learned so much along the way that I can't begin to quantify.  The big lesson is that becoming financially wealthy takes time, patience, persistence, etc.  It's not an instant gratification thing.  Rather, it's a long-term process filled with ups and downs, mis-directions and re-directions, spanning several decades.