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Thread: Something Random

  1. #17151
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    Just like to wish everyone a Happy Easter... (and for of the Orthodox Christian faiths, Happy Easter for next week).
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  2. #17152
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Buechner, Buechner....
    Where is everyone?
    --Lunar

  3. #17153
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    At work having lunch...
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  4. #17154
    Fixture ddrueding's Avatar
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    Playing Rainbow 6: Siege while drinking too much scotch. Still haven't left the office and it is 2AM.
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  5. #17155
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    That is not good. I don't know your problems at home, but drinking is never the solution.
    --Lunar

  6. #17156
    Storage is cool DrunkenBastard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunarMist View Post
    That is not good. I don't know your problems at home, but drinking is never the solution.
    Presumably this is a relatively rare occurence and not a daily routine. I'm sure he's aware of the health effects of binge drinking.

  7. #17157
    Fixture ddrueding's Avatar
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    Yup, about once every couple months. Coordinate with some old friends and game all night. It used to be in person, but now we have families and live all over the place. Gaming from work keeps me from waking the family, plus the internet connection is better. A bottle of wine and about 600ml of assorted single-malts, then sleep on the couch. Not the best thing for me, but sustainable at that frequency.

    However, your concern is appreciated.
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  8. #17158
    Learning Storage Performance Newtun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddrueding View Post
    . . .sleep on the couch . . .
    The couch at work, I hope. Or get a LYFT home.

  9. #17159
    Fixture ddrueding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Newtun View Post
    The couch at work, I hope. Or get a LYFT home.
    Yup. Too old to be testing my luck.
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  10. #17160
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    May 12. I may not make it if Alabama vs. Massipussi. Maybe Kentucky is better.
    --Lunar

  11. #17161
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    mailcity.com (lycos.com) have announced that they are discontinuing their free email accounts... So there goes an email account that I've had for the last 20+yrs...

    Spent most of today logging into various online accounts to update email details... (mainly kept the mailcity.com account as a burner/spam collector).
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  12. #17162
    Not really a Hairy Aussie
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    If Yahoo discontinued their free webmail there's no way I could possibly update all the online accounts that send to it.

  13. #17163
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    What about the Fatmail (Australian?). It's been working rather well for me over the past year or so.
    --Lunar

  14. #17164
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    What about the Fatmail (Australian?). It's been working rather well for me over the past year or so.
    --Lunar

  15. #17165
    Fixture ddrueding's Avatar
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    I tell all my clients that they need their own domain, just so that they can ensure the continuity of their e-mail address. Move to new services as the old ones go bust, but keep the address.
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  16. #17166
    Wannabe Storage Freak
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stereodude View Post
    If Yahoo discontinued their free webmail there's no way I could possibly update all the online accounts that send to it.
    I think I may have lost my seldom used/SPAM Yahoo email. I'm not 100% sure if there was a purge, I was hacked or I'm entering the wrong password.

    ALSO Postimage.org changed their URL so all my linked images no longer work.
    - 3770k, 212 EVO, Z77X-UD4H, 32GB, 660w, Titan, 840 Pro/256GB, 2TB & 1TB, Define R4, P4317Q & ZR24w, Unicomp/104, Win7 Pro x64.

    - Nikon D610 w/grip, 50mm/1.4G, 16-35mm/4G, 105mm/2.8G micro, 200-500mm/5.6E.

  17. #17167
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Fastmail has created a massive hassle.
    Apparently that is considered a dodgy domain.
    --Lunar

  18. #17168
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    So why can't we have straight forward tax system? Does H&R Block and the accounting industry present that much power as a lobbying block?

  19. #17169
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    Well lets consider this... The rich and powerful have accountants to mange their finances, whom typically would be senior staff (or very close network to senior staff) of the large accounting/tax handling firms... Gotta keep your mates (who hide $$$$$$$ for you from the IRS) in jobs...

    So I would not be surprised if these firms have easy access to the policy makers... (Wasn't there a case in a US state a few years ago about letting citizens doing their own tax returns electronically, but had to be done via some 3rd party and not direct with the IRS and state level equivalents, and said 3rd party was charging for the privilege)?
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  20. #17170
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    IIRC Fastmail was used by a lot of dodgy spam related entities as a mail forwarder, so not surprised about that one... I've now upgraded my outlook.com account to be the spam collector email account...
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  21. #17171
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Well, crap. I moved all the known emails to that after the Verizon went out business.
    --Lunar

  22. #17172
    Not really a Hairy Aussie
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    I'm pretty sure Verizon is still in business.

  23. #17173
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Sure they have phones, but no email.
    --Lunar

  24. #17174
    Fixture ddrueding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stereodude View Post
    So why can't we have straight forward tax system? Does H&R Block and the accounting industry present that much power as a lobbying block?
    Yes? Concentrated benefit and diffuse costs lead to distorted policy.
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  25. #17175
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Taxes are far less complicated and problematic than computers and IT systems.
    --Lunar

  26. #17176
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    Quote Originally Posted by ddrueding View Post
    Yes? Concentrated benefit and diffuse costs lead to distorted policy.
    I'm pretty sure the real answer is that the gov't is addicted to the power they can wield via social engineering through tax policy. A flat tax with no deductions, write-offs, etc. would deprive them of their behavior steering inclinations.

  27. #17177
    NVIDIA> AMD Fixture Handruin's Avatar
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    I'd agree that government officials are addicted to their own power and as part of staying in the position they are in they'll appease their lobbyist. Why else would Intuit and H&R Block be spending millions each year lobbying so hard? They don't want tax reform for their own personal benefit.

  28. #17178
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Nobody is forging you to use the HR Blocks. Nobody forces you to use a lawyer to defend yourself or an auto mechanic to fix a Nissan either.
    --Lunar

  29. #17179
    NVIDIA> AMD Fixture Handruin's Avatar
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    I never said I was forced to use their products or services. I'm saying if we wanted a very simplified flat tax with no deductions like SD mentioned, the reform we need is being fought against by H&R Block and Intuit because it's not in their best interests.

  30. #17180
    Wotty wot wot. Storage Is My Life Chewy509's Avatar
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    Isn't it funny when some new law or regulation comes in (that can reduce a citizen expenditure when dealing with the government), that 3rd party corporations all claim that it'll reduce the economy in some fashion, or it's too hard for citizens to do it themselves?

    Australia brought in formless tax returns a few years ago. You can simply call a tool-free number, input your Tax File Number (I guess similar to the US SSN in regards to the IRS), input your gross income, input your tax-withheld amount (The amount of tax you've already paid) and answer Yes to no claims, and you're done. If the ATO (Australian Tax Office) has your bank details, you get a refund in 5-10 days into your account or a check in the mail, or a letter requesting payment for unpaid taxes (which IIRC you have 30 days to pay, or you can contact them to arrange a payment plan)... Whole process takes about 5 minutes....

    If you have deductions or other claims to include with your tax return, then you can do your own tax return via the ATO customer web portal (or up until a few years ago, a standalone desktop application). Entire process to do it yourself is about 1 hour via the web portal... A few accountants and tax-agents (like H&R Block) complained about the changes, and our government at the time told them to deal with it...
    I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

  31. #17181
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Handruin View Post
    I never said I was forced to use their products or services. I'm saying if we wanted a very simplified flat tax with no deductions like SD mentioned, the reform we need is being fought against by H&R Block and Intuit because it's not in their best interests.
    I meant that reply for SD. Anyway this has moved to tax policy rather than the return process.
    --Lunar

  32. #17182
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunarMist View Post
    Anyway this has moved to tax policy rather than the return process.
    Well, the two are directly connected.

  33. #17183
    Storage? I am Storage! time's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chewy509 View Post
    IIRC Fastmail was used by a lot of dodgy spam related entities as a mail forwarder, so not surprised about that one... I've now upgraded my outlook.com account to be the spam collector email account...
    Complete bullshit, I'm afraid.

    Check out: https://blog.fastmail.com/2015/12/17...-against-spam/ for an insight into the efforts to stop spam afflicting Fastmail users.

  34. #17184
    Storage? I am Storage! time's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LunarMist View Post
    Fastmail has created a massive hassle.
    Apparently that is considered a dodgy domain.
    Fastmail provides several domains for users who do not have their own domain. None of these have the words FastMail in them. It is only relatively recently that Fastmail.com was made available for such users - previously, there was only Fastmail.fm, and that was the portal for all accounts.

    It is no more a dodgy domain than Yahoo.com or Gmail.com. That is, it is open to subscribers, but they do not own the domain.

  35. #17185
    Storage? I am Storage! time's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stereodude View Post
    I'm pretty sure the real answer is that the gov't is addicted to the power they can wield via social engineering through tax policy. A flat tax with no deductions, write-offs, etc. would deprive them of their behavior steering inclinations.
    I really don't know what you're on about. High wealth individuals are not foolish enough to declare all their income as individuals. There are myriad other ways to funnel wealth accumulation. That just leaves you along with the rest of the populace who can't restructure their financial affairs. X amount of tax needs to be harvested from you sorry cattle, so why do you think there is a special scenario where you would end up better off? You can't get blood out of a stone/poor people, so you're definitely on Dracula's shopping list no matter how you spin the calculations.

    I have heard that the US provided a deduction for home buyers at one stage. No idea how buying a house is an expense incurred in earning a living, the normal requirement for a tax deduction. Is this the sort of wackiness you are hoping to end?

  36. #17186
    NVIDIA> AMD Fixture Handruin's Avatar
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    There is a mortgage interest deduction for home owners when one elects to itemize deductions when filing taxes.

  37. #17187
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    Quote Originally Posted by time View Post
    I really don't know what you're on about. High wealth individuals are not foolish enough to declare all their income as individuals. There are myriad other ways to funnel wealth accumulation. That just leaves you along with the rest of the populace who can't restructure their financial affairs. X amount of tax needs to be harvested from you sorry cattle, so why do you think there is a special scenario where you would end up better off? You can't get blood out of a stone/poor people, so you're definitely on Dracula's shopping list no matter how you spin the calculations.

    I have heard that the US provided a deduction for home buyers at one stage. No idea how buying a house is an expense incurred in earning a living, the normal requirement for a tax deduction. Is this the sort of wackiness you are hoping to end?
    Your last point basically debunks the whole first part of your post. You don't know what I'm on about because you apparently don't know very much about the US tax code. The mortgage interest deduction and property tax deduction are both examples of social engineering through tax policy. The tax policy is setup to encourage people to buy homes. I don't have a problem with people buying homes. I don't think people should be force to live in gov't run projects. However, all the possible deductions (and they're so many of them) combined with all the ins and outs of the tax system make it impossible to actually sort out.

    The letter Donald Rumsfeld sends to the IRS each year with his taxes sums it up well:
    Quote Originally Posted by Donald Rumsfled
    Dear Sir or Madame,

    I have sent in our federal income tax and gift tax returns for 2013. As in prior years, it is important for you to know that I have absolutely no idea whether our tax returns and our tax payments are accurate. I say that despite the fact that I am a college graduate and I try hard to make sure our returns are accurate.

    […]

    As in past years, I have spent more money than I wanted to spend to hire an accounting firm to prepare our tax returns and I believe they are well qualified.

    This note is to alert you folks that I know I do not know whether or not my tax returns are accurate, which is a sad commentary on governance in our nation’s capital.

    […]

    I should also add that my wife of 59 years, also a college graduate, has signed our joint return, but she also knows that she does not have any idea whether or not our tax payments are accurate.
    Full letter available here.

    The IRS doesn't even know how to interpret the tax code. How sad is it that you have to interpret it? It's not clear cut. Investigative journalists have intentionally called the IRS help line multiple time to ask the same question every time to each different person they get and then ran the answers provided past tax experts to see if the answers were correct. The findings were sad. First, the answers didn't agree with each other, and it wasn't like the answers were all the same with only one outlier. It was a mixed bag of varied answers. Second, the answers provided were not necessarily correct. And, the answers weren't just different interpretations of the tax code that all could have been right. Some were flagrantly wrong.

    Ideally there wouldn't even be a tax return. But, if they must have one it should fit on one side on a single sheet of paper.

  38. #17188
    NVIDIA> AMD Fixture Handruin's Avatar
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    Last year's taxes (2016) was an interesting "interpretation" of my tax-filing for what I guessed that I owed the IRS. My story supports your sentiment regarding the complexity of this ridiculous system. When my former company EMC was purchased by Dell, my stock was liquidated for a specific value and then a portion of the quantity of stock was converted and given to me in new DVMT tracking stocks...to which it had a taxable consequence. The problem I ran into (and many others as well) is that I had so many years of stock purchases that the law changed part way through my years of purchasing that in 2011 the management firm was required to calculate and report the cost basis of stocks reported to the IRS.

    When I got my tax documentation for 2016, all stocks converted to DVMT pre-2011 had no basis reported to the IRS which meant I needed to report it to figure out my tax consequence. All stocks converted post-2011 had the basis already calculated making it easy to enter and figure out what I owed. I was not able to figure out the mathematical formula used to apply to the pre-2011 basis for all of these stock conversions. I called my management firm which had done the reporting of the numbers to the IRS and asked them for the formula they used for post-2011 basis so that I could ensure when reporting pre-2011 basis that my numbers jived with their reported calculations. They repeatedly told me they could not help or explain to me how they derived the cost basis for the items they reported. All they could do is tell me to consult my tax advisor. I tried for 20 minutes trying to convince them that since they reported the numbers, they should be able to tell me how they did that. I suspect they can't tell me because they actually don't know. They likely pay someone like Price Waterhouse Cooper to do the accounting and don't want to risk being liable in giving me incorrect information so they won't tell me.

    Long story short, I searched and searched and found that most people were divided on the way to report the calculated cost basis and there was no clear consensus on the correct formula. I chose one side in the divided argument and hoped for the best. Fucking ridiculous.

  39. #17189
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    That sucks... I haven't had that problem yet.

    AFAIK, you can use one of several different methods to calculate the cost basis of multiple purchases over time of the same stock and they're all are okay (if you do the math right) because they will all ultimately equal out by the time you sell it all. Your situation could be different though.

  40. #17190
    I can't believe I'm a Fixture LunarMist's Avatar
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    The stupid internet service is not allowing email.
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