Thursday, February 28, 2008

Bar Stool Economics

Bar Stool Economics: Our Tax System Explained

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100.
If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.

The fifth would pay $1.

The sixth would pay $3.

The seventh would pay $7.

The eighth would pay $12.

The ninth would pay $18.

The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that's what they decided to do. The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed
quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve.
'Since you are
all such good customers,' he said,
'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.'

Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.
The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so

the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free.
But what about the other six men - the paying customers?
How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?'

They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33.
But if they subtracted that from everybody's share,
then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.
So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill
by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so:

The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).

The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).

The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).

The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).

The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).

The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free.
But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.

'I only got a dollar out of the $20,'declared the sixth man.
He pointed to the tenth man,' but he got $10!'

'Yeah, that's right,' exclaimed the fifth man. 'I only saved a dollar, too.

It's unfair that he got ten times more than I got'

'That's true!!' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I got only two?
The wealthy get all the breaks!'

'Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison.
'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!'

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.
The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks so the nine sat down and
had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill,
they discovered something important.
They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, journalists and college professors,
is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes
get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them
for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore.
In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D.
Professor of Economics
University of Georgia

Sunday, February 24, 2008


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I just got this from a blog a read. It was easy and fun.

Sorry no original thoughts lately, most too personal even for here.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Hey I am 6:49am....

You're the time of day right around sunrise, when the sky is still a pale bluish gray. The streets are empty, and the grass and leaves are a little bit sparkly with dew. You are the sound of a few chirpy birds outside the window. You are quiet, peaceful, and contemplative. If you move slowly, it's not because you're lazy – it's because you know there's no reason to rush. You move like a relaxed cat, pausing for deep stretches that make your muscles feel alive. You are long sips of tea or coffee (out of a mug that's held with both hands) that slowly warm your insides just as the sun is brightening the sky.

17% of the people who took this quiz got the same evaluation.

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Saturday, February 9, 2008

Memory Lane

This library is next door to where Nathan practiced today. I don't think it is an exaggeration to say that a huge chunk of who I am was formed in this building. My first introduction to art was here, my first acting classes were here, my reading skills were developed here, my sense of self was probably discovered here.....I know my LOVE of books was nurtured here.
This passageway was my "Alice Tunnel", let's follow it....
After going through the dark and spooky tunnel (at least to a 7 year old it was) you come out into my play yard.
Here is the Great Tree that listened to all my secrets. She blooms with the largest pure white magnolia flowers you have ever seen each year. (Funny aside, the green building in the background was were Kayleigh had her 1st non-college apt. and the church in the background is an Episcopal one. It shares the parking lot with the Catholic college)
The window in the middle was my mom's office window.
This was the door to the Covenent, but now it is the Nursing Dept.
The second floor on the left, where the windows look a little greener, is the chapel. At least I think it is still a chapel. I didn't get to go in and look.
Then back through the "Alice Tunnel".
Another view of the Library and Science buildings. Where I learned how rats are tested for psychology and I participated in many experiments too.
After coming out of the tunnel, if you look the other way, you see the other library I spent quite a bit of time at. It is the city's main public branch.
A little more background story.....This is Spalding College (now Spalding University), my mom got a job here when I was 7 yrs old. I rode the city bus from my school to the bus stop about 6 blocks from here and then walked, checked in with my mom, then ran the campus. I was almost 13 years old before I was allowed to go home after school. I think I was only allowed then because my sister was finally in school and rode a school bus and I had to be home to babysit her.

It has only been the last few years that I have understood the impact of my early freedom and of literally growing up on a college campus. I was never treated like a child, I was allowed to walk into just about any class I wanted as long as I was quiet, I ran errands for the office workers, studied with the college students, modeled for art classes, participated in psychology experiments, worshiped with the Sisters, had formal tea in the formal drawing room two afternoons a week, and just wondered and wandered......