Thursday, 12 June 2014

08:39 – It’s a small victory for sanity, but the city government has finally decided to kill the West End trolley service downtown. The “trolley” is actually just a standard city bus duded up to look like an old-fashioned trolley. It’s been running since 1988, and has never had many riders. The vast majority of the time, it has no riders at all, and just drives around empty but for the driver. Every time someone gets on that bus, it costs city taxpayers $23. And it took the city council 25 years to realize that it was a waste of money.

I read an interesting article on CNN yesterday, America’s middle class: Poorer than you think

In terms of average net worth per adult, the United States comes in at $301,000, fourth behind Switzerland, Australia, and Norway. But in terms of median net worth, the US comes in 19th, at only $45,000. Neither of these numbers is particularly useful. The average is skewed by the fact that the US far and away leads the world in millionaires and billionaires. If you consider a group of 100 people, one of whom has a net worth of $100,000,000 and 99 of whom have a net worth of zero, the average net worth of that group is $1,000,000. The median is skewed by the fact that the poor in the US have essentially zero net worth. The bottom 40% hold less than 0.5% of total US net worth, the bottom 60% something under 5%, and the bottom 80% something like 10%, leaving about 90% of total US net worth to be shared among the top 20%. If you want numbers that provide a better picture of the US middle class, look at the net worth and income necessary to be in the top quintile.

10:16 – Most of the backorders are starting to clear out. UPS showed up yesterday with 200 beakers and 480 graduated cylinders that had been backordered for a couple months, and FedEx is supposed to deliver 300 5/10/15X folding pocket magnifiers today that have been backordered for 3 months or more. That’s a relief, because we were down to only 50 or so of the magnifiers in inventory, and just four of the cylinders. Now all I need to do is get all this stuff moved downstairs and checked into inventory.