Apologies, and some loose ends

From: Dave Long (dl@silcom.com)
Date: Tue Apr 03 2001 - 20:37:46 PDT


I am sorry I've been salting wounds. You have certainly convinced
me that some portion of your losses is impacted by a convoluted tax
code, you just haven't convinced me that your acquisition terms and
the subsequent underperformance* of a single security impacted them
more directly, and more substantially.

I thought someone who advocates a lack of food safety regulation
and /caveat emptor/ would also accept the application of /caveat
investor/ in parallel situations, but am happy to put this horse
out to pasture; perhaps it'll be livelier when it comes back in.

Back to generalities:

I have two major issues with the transaction tax system:

- it is skewed in favor of savings, which is just as bad
  from a neutrality perspective as being skewed against
  increase in the Gini coefficient:
        Eu=100, Cu=10, Iu=5, Su=85 ...

- W != E - C ... That's delta(W). W += E - C ...

The census provides us with decent figures tying consumption
to income, and workable figures tying income to wealth. Why
not just evaluate systems based upon neutrality with respect
to the empirical data?

My current estimate for consumption, based on
Cx = Ex/2 + 15k

Income goes about 60/40 -- the top 40% of an income range
will be earning 60% of the dollars for that range. (This
goes back to a question raised in "Becoming our mother?",
and in the Federalist Papers: if a minority can be taxed,
the dollars are at the upper end of the distribution.)

No simple wealth formula, but somewhere in the FoRK archives
I gave an old graph. For starters, market caps in late '99
were closer to 80/20, and personal wealth looks much more
like that it does like income.


* I might've made the same decision; it would have depended upon
what I thought of CMGi's volatility**. Warren Buffet, both as
a student of Graham and Dodd and as someone who experienced the
Depression, probably wouldn't have.

** When modelling for Other People's Money, /aes alienam?/, mean
returns suffice. When modelling for myself, modal returns matter.

> "The market can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent."
> -- John Maynard Keynes

Although I still owe FoRK that post on luck, JMK has not only
anticipated it, but done a wonderful job of summing it up.

Some thoughts for the very long term (in which we cishumanists
are all dead):

What is expected probability of a random walk returning to zero?

If we are not in a random walk, why is half the world not owned by
Sumerian investment bankers?

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Apr 29 2001 - 20:25:29 PDT