Read this:

This is tipping, but by calling it a “service charge,” it is no longer optional. Then comes the virtue signaling about benefits.

I don’t have an issue with this. I would like to see tipping become a relic of the past.

Stock Tip

The DOJ has officially opened up a lawsuit against Apple to break up its Smart Phone Monopoly. $AAPL is one of Pelosi’s largest positions. So for you Apple bulls, you have Pelosi on your side for this one.

Follow this Twitter feed for more stock tips. Just buy what Congress buys. Those crooked sonsabitches are all insider trading.

Real Communism Hasn’t Been Tried

Seattle, which already as a $19.97 per hour minimum wage, passed a law mandating delivery driver minimum wage. Using a complicated formula, the law dictated that delivery drivers receive a living wage. The law caused delivery companies to pass the added costs on to the consumer in the form of extra delivery fees. The next thing you know, people in the Seattle area had to contend with $26 coffees and $32 sandwiches, with taxes and the neew delivery fees comprising nearly 30 percent of the total bill.

The free market responded, as it always does. They don’t call it the LAW of supply and demand for nothing.

Seattle residents started deleting their delivery apps from their phones in response to the spiking exorbitant delivery prices. Uber Eats experienced a 30-percent decline in order volume in the city, while DoorDash reported 30,000 fewer orders within just the first two weeks of the ordinance taking effect.

As a result, the income for drivers actually went down. A driver who made $931 in a week this time last year saw his earnings drop by half to $464.81. Small restaurants are hurting, delivery drivers are hurting, and people who depend on food deliveries are not able to get food because drivers are quitting in droves. So do the socialists in charge admit that they were wrong, and change the law? Of course not.

A spokesman for the mayor noted that “should the data show there have been unintended impacts for workers and small businesses, we are always open to making improvements”—a criterion which has clearly been met already—but nonetheless clarified that the mayor still “stands strongly in support” of the minimum wage ordinance.

Meanwhile, the president of the City Council claims she is “very worried” about the ordinance’s impacts so far—and even argues that “it’s not the role of policymakers to regulate the profit margins of companies”—before going on to say “I’m not going to redo the whole legislation.”

The law required that the city hire more bureaucrats to administer the law, and that is the point of most socialist laws- to increase the size and power of government and its officials. Just remember, the reason why communism and socialism fails is because the right people haven’t been in charge, and true communism hasn’t been tried yet.


I spend a lot of time talking about how the left doesn’t understand economics. Today I am going to criticize those on the right who don’t understand money or economics. Let’s use a Christian who quotes the Bible when he claims that usury (the charging of interest) is a sin, and thus shouldn’t be permitted.

The outlawing of interest would stop all lending. Why would I loan you money and assume the risk of the borrower not paying it back. What is the upside? According to him, you would loan out this money because you are a nice person.

This is simply idiocy. He claims that the bank is making a profit on money that isn’t theirs, and besides money doesn’t actually exist.

There are reasons why it’s a bad idea to lend to people:

  • Default: A percentage of people won’t repay the loan. Charging interest makes up for that. If there is a 1% chance that a person will default, you need to charge more than 1% interest to compensate for that.
  • Loss of opportunity: Instead of loaning you that money, perhaps I could use it myself to repair my home, buy some clothes, or some other reason. If I am not charging interest, I would rather use my money for my purposes, not yours. Imagine the look you would get from the wife if you loaned $100,000 to a family so they could buy a house, then your kid needs braces. Then you explain to the wife that your kid can’t get braces because you loaned out the money that you had been saving.
  • Inflation: The $100 I lend you today will only be worth $80 or $90 tomorrow. I need to charge interest to compensate for that loss to inflation.

For the three reasons above, let’s say that you loan $1,000 out to 100 people. Your $100,000 is out there, and 1% of them never pay you back. The others take 5 years to pay you back. Now you have only $99,000, but that money is now only worth $48,000, thanks to inflation. You just lost the use of your money for 5 years, and half of it’s value.

But at least you can claim to be a “good Christian.”

The other part of his argument is that banks are lending money that belongs to their depositors, and because it isn’t theirs, they have no right to profit from that. This is a nonsensical argument. A retail store is selling goods that they purchase from others. A grocery store sells tomatoes that it buys from a farmer, beef from a rancher, etc. so that the consumer doesn’t have to go to ten different farmers to get their groceries, charging a fee for the convenience.

A bank operates the same way. They take small amounts of money from depositors, paying them interest for the use of their money, then loans out larger amounts, charging interest for the convenience of being able to buy a house or a car now, instead of having to wait years while saving to do it in cash. A bank is a retail store that sells money for a fee.

The claim that Christian societies functioned for thousands of years without banks is bullshit. First, people were largely living a subsistence lifestyle for a good part of that. Banks and money allow for society to have a division of labor: instead of having to build your own house, grow your own food, make your own clothes, etc., money allows a person to specialize in building houses, or farming, or fixing people’s teeth. You can sell that product or service and use some of it to pay people to do the other things, or make the products that you don’t. Part of that is money and money lending.

This is where Jewish people have gotten the hate and scorn from. Christian societies needed money lending, but couldn’t make it work because they were losing money in not charging interest. Along came the Jews, who weren’t prohibited from charging interest, and they made a pile of money providing bank lending services. It is people who had the “interest should be illegal” opinion that started all of the hate and discontent.

Saying that people who provide this service should do so for free is no different than claiming landlords shouldn’t charge rent, or that medical care should be free. It’s a nonsensical, childish argument. This argument is how you tell me that you don’t understand people, opportunity cost, or economics.

Why not $250 an hour?

Then we would all be rich.

Our politicians are morons.

However, I fully support this. As a nurse, I can currently get a 10 week travel contract to California paying $3k a week plus per diem for expenses. Under this plan, nursing contracts would go up to $10k a week or more. I could take one contract a year and be retired for the other 42 weeks a year.

Tests Favor Rich People…

The left is claiming that standardized testing is more a measure of the wealth of the households that the test taker live in than it is a measure of student achievement. They cite a study that found a correlation between test scores and affluence.

I agree that affluence and success on standardized tests are correlated. However, as is often said, correlation does not prove causation, but causation does require correlation. In this case, I do agree that students who test well are more likely to come from affluent households. The reason for this is simple: a person who values knowledge or is intelligent is more likely to pass these traits on to their offspring.

The basic theory here for the left is that all people are equal, meaning the same. If all people are the same, than any disparate outcome MUST be due to some unfair advantage and not due to the poor choices made by the loser. That is false, and demonstrably so.

As an example, Asian culture values the family and respect for elders as well as considering education to be a gift. For those reasons, Asian families support and push their children to work hard, respect teachers, and succeed. This is why Asians score so well on tests, earn high grades, and are generally successful in life at a rate higher than any other demographic.

On the other end of the spectrum, black families are usually single parent households, with there being little to no respect for authority figures, and possess a general dislike for education, work, or testing. As a result, blacks score lower on tests, are more likely to be lawbreakers, and are more likely to be victims of crime. This lack of work ethic, nuclear families, or respect for education is reflected in their lack of success at, well, anything.

This would be true within these demographics as well- the more respect there is for work, the more likely there will be success.

For the left, testing HAS to be eliminated. They have been claiming that math is racist. English is racist. Testing is racist. So is the credit scoring system, economics, the criminal justice system, and every thing else that exposes the left for what it is- the last refuge of people who are such losers in life that all they can do is vote for a living, and the politicians who use them as useful idiots to garner money and power for themselves.

That’s why any white person who wins is somehow a racist cheater.

Tax Hearing

As you will recall, I was appealing the tax assessor’s valuation of my old house because I felt that the house had been undervalued for tax purposes. Since that would actually increase the taxes in my new house (I explain that here) I decided to appeal the valuation. The hearing was just a few days after my mother had passed away, so I will admit that I wasn’t as prepared as I should have been.

The hearing was in front of a magistrate. One thing that I felt was unfair about this is that the magistrate was an employee of the tax assessor’s office in another county. Since all of the counties in the state use the same methods and computer software, I don’t feel that the magistrate is an unbiased individual.

Still, I thought that I presented my case pretty well. I pointed out that my house was valued at $154/sf, but every house in my neighborhood sold for $195 to $210 per square foot, even using the assessor’s office’s numbers. Even at the low end, my house was undervalued by a significant margin.

That’s when the excuses started. The assessor claimed that they were permitted by law to subtract the customary costs of sale from the fair market value and then they began pointing out that the other houses that had sold had features that my house didn’t- one had a pool, one was a corner lot, two others were on the edge of the neighborhood, etc. This, according to them, made my house less valuable.

By the end of the hearing, the magistrate and the assessor were both explaining to me that I just don’t understand real estate. Keep in mind that they were all government employees whose judgement means nothing, because they don’t invest in real estate. They merely tax those who do. I was able to show, using the assessor’s own data, that the assessor’s office is consistently 15-25% lower than actual market value. That didn’t matter, I got lectured about how TOP MEN used computers to value this property, and the methods are used all over the state.

So I thought I had lost. I resigned myself to getting screwed by the tax man.

Imagine my surprise when I got the magistrate’s decision. I didn’t get a total win, and I didn’t even get as much as I hoped for, but I did get something. The magistrate recommended that my valuation be increased from $154 per square foot to $164 per square foot. Not great, but the increase will lower my property taxes on the new house by about $400 per year. In total, the deductions from Save Our Homes portability decrease my property taxes by about $3000 a year.

Do I like paying $750 a month in property taxes? No. That’s why I fight to keep my taxes as low as I can, and this hearing cost me $25 plus a few hours of my time. Property taxes and the 6 percent sales tax are the only taxes we pay here in Florida, so it’s just something that we have to live with. At least we don’t have personal property taxes or income taxes. Still, I often wonder what it is we get for that tax rate.

Layoffs and Minimum Wage

California’s minimum wage is increasing 25% in April, to $20 an hour. Employers are going to raise prices, but that can only be done so much before customers decide to eat at home. That point, it appears, has been reached. So now the layoffs begin. Pizza Hut just laid off 1,200 workers in California. Fatburger has implemented a hiring freeze. Both chains have eliminated paid time off.

It’s almost like those of us who understand economics have been warning of this for years.