Saturday, September 1, 2012

Hey... Alberta has new irrational drunk driving laws.

Alberta has introduced new 'drunk' driving laws that penalizes those who register under the legal BAC limit of .08 but over the mark of .05 which the Province "still considers unsafe." The penalties include having their vehicle impounded for three days and losing their licence for three days. The Globe and Mail article is here.

So, in an effort to stop crashes caused by impaired drivers the government has decided to make it illegal to have a glass of wine with dinner.  How a law like this is supposed to in any way effect someone selfish enough to drive legitimately drunk I'd like to know. This seems like the easiest possible way for a politician to look like they're working on the problem. Or at least get MADD off their backs for a while. I don't know.

Also on the topic, I'd also like to throw it out there how ineffective and expensive longer prison sentences are for most crimes, including drunk driving.
Honestly what's the difference between a 20 year prison sentence and a 10 year one? Is a would-be drunk driver sitting weighing the pro's and con's of either driving drunk or not driving drunk? The exact problem is that they are not thinking of the consequences of their actions, on themselves and other people.

Keep in mind also that the drunk driver likely possesses no other threat to society besides when he/she is behind the wheel of a car.

I agree with the feeling that we're not getting enough justice but we need to get beyond longer/mandatory prison sentences being the answer to everything.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

How the hell are we poor?

I can't believe this isn't talked about more. Seems so obvious.

Why, at a time of "peak oil" and never-before-seen technological advancement, are nations and their citizens bankrupt?

It's because corporations and extremely wealthy individuals control a crippling amount of the wealth in the world. Wealth doesn't just disappear except through inefficiencies (for example when an arsonist sets a perfectly good home on fire, insurance, fire, and police costs are incurred to fellow homeowners and society at large). Basically this is a zero-sum game. Individuals and nations are running deficits. Someone must be running a surplus.

Here's who's running surpluses: Corporations, extremely wealthy individuals, China, several oil-exporting countries.

When government's pursue "austerity measures" and cut social spending or government programs, yes, that's one (painful) way to get rid of their deficit - but isn't it short-term? That type of action hurts the lower and middle classes. And the corporate tax rate that affects the extremely wealthy? Lowered.

I've always suspected that we need a corporate stimulus package not a government one. They're the ones with the money. Thankfully we don't have to ask for one. We live in a democracy. Elected officials can simply raise taxes on the extremely wealthy.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

How do I charge enough?

This is how to live the lifestyle you want.  Answer these two questions:

1. How much money do you want in a week?

2. How many hours do you want to work in a week?

Now figure it out. Here are my answers, using the example of a Christmas light installation company I'm starting:

1. $1500
2. 40 (36 hours install, 4 hours overhead)

$1500/36 = $41.67/hr

So to get to $1500/wk, I need to get 36 hours worth of work at that rate, or less work at a higher rate, etc.


Since I'm looking at splitting the profits 50/50 I'll have to bill accordingly, around $83/hr.  Plus there's driving time to and from jobs, travel costs, some fix-up jobs after the work has been done (which may be included in the initial install) so I'll want to bill a little higher than that $83/hr.

Let's look at 36 hours of work and say that only 2/3 of that "work" will actually be doing installs. Maybe that's a little conservative... Yep. I'll want to bill above that.

Am I going to be able to get enough business?  Good things happen at the Exchange Cafe. Thanks Mario for the advice!