I grew up as the youngest of six kids, though I did have my own room for quite a bit of that time. But there were always people around. Then I had multiple roommates in college. Then I got out on my own and promptly spent about a third of my take-home income on an apartment in New Jersey, where I could live alone. It was a tough slog, but I figured out how to save money while doing it. Eventually I moved to the Bay Area, where I got married. We started paying about a third of our income for a townhouse. When it looked like our cost of living would continue to rise, we moved.
I can understand how some people want to live in a given area, and San Francisco has been a locus for having to spend a pile of money to live in the city. Here’s an article on the new micro-apartment movement, where you can have the privilege of living in 300 square feet for $1875 a month. Somehow, I don’t think that this is only a third of your average renters’ take-home income. Ouch.
“We need to think outside the box in providing housing for our population,” said San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener, who sponsored legislation last year to allow “micro-apartments” of 220 square feet including bathroom, kitchen and closet. The city agreed that 375 micro-units could be built as a test; 120 are now in the pipeline in the Mid-Market area.
Meanwhile, plenty of the new apartment buildings are 400 square feet or less – not technically micro but still pretty darn small. By comparison, most studios have been 500 to 600 square feet.
“We need units of all different sizes,” said Wiener, who lives in a 490-square-foot condo in the Castro and said it was cathartic to shed half his worldly goods when he moved in 10 years ago. “Not everyone wants or can afford a huge space. Forty percent of San Franciscans live alone.”
We’ve shed a pile of possessions recently, though we still have more than we probably want. I might describe it as “cathartic,” or I might describe it as “desperate.” It depends on how much you can afford to keep. Hey, if the price of living close to the action of some type or another is worth your desire to live there, then I say go for it. But I do question how many people would be willing to do this. I’ve seen articles on similar trends in New York. I’m sure Tokyo has a variety of these things as well.
It’s when we start pushing people into huge cities and forcing them to live in these spaces that I’ll wonder where it started…
Though this is not surprising, given the progression of the union leader opinions on PPACA. But Reason Mag confirms that a normal partner of progressive policy is sitting this one out for now.
Although the Obama administration has made enrollment cheerleaders out of the Baltimore Ravens, Organizing for America, and the now-disgraced Chad Henderson, many major unions who were allies of the president are now treating Obamacare-advocacy like a hot potato.
The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), which has over 11 million members and is the largest federation of unions in the country, is displeased about the false promises of Obamacare and refuses to promote enrollment on the government’s behalf. It’s not just private sector unions, though. Politico explains:
Check out the Politico article, and the details. It’s mostly what you’ve heard, but nicely packaged.
What seems to be happening to me is that the union leaders are unhappy that the law put in place did not accommodate them. Well, it doesn’t appear to accommodate pretty much anyone else, either. In this case, though, it’s driven a wedge between two pretty powerful groups on the left side of the aisle. I don’t expect that this will change any outcomes, since the law is going to have to be tweaked anyway, but that won’t happen until almost everything falls apart.
But the inherent problem in this is that people do actually need to sign up to make this law anywhere near workable. If enrollment numbers don’t start to climb, it’s likely that the law will collapse earlier. While many would cheer this, it would likely result in a more hasty change that impacts people more. So not having support of the normal players does not bode well for the future of any of us.
Not that this will surprise any of us who weren’t that thrilled with the direction in the first place.
Kucherena told the RIA Novosti news agency Thursday that Snowden starts his new job on Friday. Kucherena declined to name the company that has hired Snowden but says it’s a major Russian website.
As an old tech support guy, I can assure you that I never asked for information any more personal than a callback number. Though I did have a beer with my customers on occasion.
This is a reminder that I’m not that young anymore, but it’s more than that. We’ll just start with the fact that I’m not young anymore.
If you remember the likes of Tetris, the early games console ZX Spectrum and were among the first to use the web, prepare to feel very old.
An upcoming exhibition being held at the Barbican in London is relegating these retro childhood favourites to the world of ‘digital archaeology.’
Video games and computers from the 1970s to 1990s including Space Invaders, Pong, the Gameboy, Mac Paint and the Linn LM-1 drum machine will be on display at the museum from July.
What most worries me here is that I never had a Gameboy, because that was for younger kids.
But that’s irrelevant. I think it’s somewhat cool that we’re recognizing the influence and significance of the electronic game on the world, and how it has shaped generations of humanity. My wife would say shaped for the worse, but I’m more neutral.
I won’t get into the “my first computer” experiences, mostly because you’d realize what a TOTAL geek I am (though you already know). But I do think that it’s important that we recognize the influence that those early games and devices had on a growing group of kids (mostly boys, but that’s another post). Those of us who were around to drive the PC and computing to be available to everyone were the same ones fascinated by the cool digital technology of yesteryear that showed us a new reality. It was a way to exercise the brain and be the best at something that didn’t involve throwing a ball, and it was new territory for all of us.
So when Facebook gets relegated to the museum back room, we old-timers will just nod and say it’s proof that technology keeps moving at faster speeds, and we’ll be happy that we were there for a time to push it.
Maybe it’s an Oregon thing. Or at least we’re all in the same environment, so we think similar things. How about the next time you want a beer, you help plant a tree? Witness the Oregon Public House:
This establishment is a “philanthropub.” Along with the brews, a variety of non-profits are on tap here, too. When you place your order at the bar, you don’t just choose beer, wine, or food. You also choose an organization such as Friends of the Children or Friends of Trees, which gets the profit from your order. In its first six weeks of operation after opening in May 2013, the Oregon Public House donated a total of $3,842.80 to eight local charities. Other philanthropubs have been established in Washington, D.C., and Houston, Texas.
There’s a distillery in Portland (that makes some fine whiskey) that gives back to veterans’ causes. When we stared the promotions business that my wife runs, we committed to turning a portion of our sale profits to charity. It makes it harder to actually pull in a profit, especially the way we structured it, but it has benefited the local charities around our customers, and it’s a “hook” that occasionally gets her the sale. We do this in particular to honor the Lord who guides us in all things. There might be some of that in others’ desire to give back, or it could be other motivations.
But think of this: organizations like the Oregon Public House, ours, and many others are voluntarily paying a tax and distributing it to other organizations in need. And we’re not complaining about it, because it’s our choice to do so. Part of the interest I know we personally have is that we can target funds to charities who have missions that match ours in some way. And that’s what makes charity so motivating.
Now, I would bet that, for many companies doing this, the tax implications are always helpful. But if the tax break went away for us, I doubt we would stop. We’d take on the additional burden to keep our corporate mission alive. I wonder how many people that want to pay more tax would just keep sending in the checks if the government pulled away the burden to do so?
If we’re looking for definitions…
White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters on Thursday that ”good reporters” are focusing on Obamacare’s success stories rather than on the problems that have plagued the online exchanges.
Then we can define Pravda as a place where good reporters work.