Friday, December 23, 2011

BBC News - US durable goods orders jump 3.8% in November

The US Commerce Department said that orders for durable goods, including transportation equipment, rose by $7.5bn (£4.8bn) to $207bn.
Excluding transportation goods, which are seen as volatile, orders rose overall by 0.3%.
In the same announcement the previous month's figures were revised up to $199bn from $197.7bn.
Transportation goods include aeroplanes which drove most of the growth.
Plane-builder Boeing received 96 orders for aircraft in November compared with 7 in October.
However, car manufacturers saw orders fall by 0.5% in the same period after rising 5.9% in October.

BBC News - US durable goods orders jump 3.8% in November
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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Privatising Margaret Thatcher's funeral would be a fitting tribute to her legacy

Margaret Thatcher
Cover of Margaret Thatcher
I'll sign the petition in a heartbeat.

"In keeping with the great lady's legacy, Margaret Thatcher's state funeral should be funded and managed by the private sector to offer the best value and choice for end users and other stakeholders. The undersigned believe that the legacy of the former PM deserves nothing less and that offering this unique opportunity is an ideal way to cut government expense and further prove the merits of liberalised economics Baroness Thatcher spearheaded."

Privatising Margaret Thatcher's funeral would be a fitting tribute to her legacy | Sunny Hundal | Comment is free |
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Monday, December 12, 2011

Teaching Assistant with R expertise needed in Toronto

Services of a teaching assistant (TA) are required for a course in Applied Retail Research at Ryerson University in Toronto. The course will run from January to April 2012. Experience with statistical analysis  using R is required.

For details on the course, please click HERE.

To apply or read more about the position, please click HERE.

Note: Applicants who are not registered Ryerson University students will be considered in cases where no qualified Ryerson student is available for this appointment.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Take note: Evernote beats Microsoft’s OneNote

When it comes to notes, you never know when you’ll have to write a down a line, save an email, or archive a web page. Also, you may not necessarily be in your office sitting with a computer when such needs arise. That’s where Microsoft’s OneNote left much to be desired, which is a very powerful note-taking software yet it worked only with a computer.

Evernote changed all that. You can use an iPAD, iPhone, the desktop application, or the web-based interface to record your notes. Plus, all your notes are in the cloud, so that if you add a note, it gets updated on all platforms that you use. Furthermore, at fewer than $6 a month, the subscription for the service (software is free) is affordable even for the penny-pinchers. The free version of the service and software are also extremely helpful and equipped to handle the needs of an ordinary user. It is only when someone is in heavy-duty info archiving on the fly that one would need the pro version that requires a subscription.

The graph below shows that Google-based searches for Evernote bypassed that for OneNote in early 2009. The popularity gap between Evernote and OneNote has widened since then.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Where the 1% Live - Jobs & Economy - The Atlantic Cities

From the Atlantic Cities:

Only twenty metropolitan areas — New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, San Francisco, Boston, Houston, Philadelphia, Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, San Jose, Seattle, Minneapolis, San Diego, Detroit, Phoenix, Baltimore, Bridgeport (Fairfield County, Connecticut, is the center of the hedge fund industry and home to many corporate headquarters), and Denver — have at least 1 percent of all the nation’s very high-income households. Collectively those areas account for 56 percent of the highest-income households but for only 37 percent of all households.
Courtesy Brookings Institution
Unsurprisingly, the New York metropolitan area has the largest number of very high-income households. Nearly 12 percent of top-income households live in the New York region, compared to about 7 percent of all households. Second-place Los Angeles is home to about 5 percent of the very rich, compared to about 4 percent of all households.

Where the 1% Live - Jobs & Economy - The Atlantic Cities

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The misguided priorities of Pakistani academics | Blog | DAWN.COM

When one thinks of the grave challenges Pakistan has faced in the past three decades, Chemistry, Zoology and Urdu literature do not come to mind. One sees poverty, income inequality, food security, water shortages, infrastructure deficits, illiteracy, violence, wars, religious fundamentalism and sectarianism as some of the challenges that threaten the survival of the society and the State. It is hard to comprehend why academics in Pakistan would avoid focusing on the immediate challenges, but instead focus on subject areas where their impact will, at best, be marginal because researchers in Europe and North America have significantly more capital, infrastructural, and other intellectual resources at their disposal than their counterparts in Pakistan.

The misguided priorities of Pakistani academics | Blog | DAWN.COM

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A Sister’s Eulogy for Steve Jobs

From The New York Times


I grew up as an only child, with a single mother. Because we were poor and because I knew my father had emigrated from Syria, I imagined he looked like Omar Sharif. I hoped he would be rich and kind and would come into our lives (and our not yet furnished apartment) and help us. Later, after I’d met my father, I tried to believe he’d changed his number and left no forwarding address because he was an idealistic revolutionary, plotting a new world for the Arab people.

Even as a feminist, my whole life I’d been waiting for a man to love, who could love me. For decades, I’d thought that man would be my father. When I was 25, I met that man and he was my brother.

By then, I lived in New York, where I was trying to write my first novel. I had a job at a small magazine in an office the size of a closet, with three other aspiring writers. When one day a lawyer called me — me, the middle-class girl from California who hassled the boss to buy us health insurance — and said his client was rich and famous and was my long-lost brother, the young editors went wild. This was 1985 and we worked at a cutting-edge literary magazine, but I’d fallen into the plot of a Dickens novel and really, we all loved those best. The lawyer refused to tell me my brother’s name and my colleagues started a betting pool. The leading candidate: John Travolta. I secretly hoped for a literary descendant of Henry James — someone more talented than I, someone brilliant without even trying.

When I met Steve, he was a guy my age in jeans, Arab- or Jewish-looking and handsomer than Omar Sharif.

We took a long walk — something, it happened, that we both liked to do. I don’t remember much of what we said that first day, only that he felt like someone I’d pick to be a friend. He explained that he worked in computers.

I didn’t know much about computers. I still worked on a manual Olivetti typewriter.

I told Steve I’d recently considered my first purchase of a computer: something called the Cromemco.

Steve told me it was a good thing I’d waited. He said he was making something that was going to be insanely beautiful.

I want to tell you a few things I learned from Steve, during three distinct periods, over the 27 years I knew him. They’re not periods of years, but of states of being. His full life. His illness. His dying.

Steve worked at what he loved. He worked really hard. Every day.

That’s incredibly simple, but true.

He was the opposite of absent-minded.

He was never embarrassed about working hard, even if the results were failures. If someone as smart as Steve wasn’t ashamed to admit trying, maybe I didn’t have to be.

When he got kicked out of Apple, things were painful. He told me about a dinner at which 500 Silicon Valley leaders met the then-sitting president. Steve hadn’t been invited.

He was hurt but he still went to work at Next. Every single day.

Novelty was not Steve’s highest value. Beauty was.

For an innovator, Steve was remarkably loyal. If he loved a shirt, he’d order 10 or 100 of them. In the Palo Alto house, there are probably enough black cotton turtlenecks for everyone in this church.

He didn’t favor trends or gimmicks. He liked people his own age.

His philosophy of aesthetics reminds me of a quote that went something like this: “Fashion is what seems beautiful now but looks ugly later; art can be ugly at first but it becomes beautiful later.”

Steve always aspired to make beautiful later.

He was willing to be misunderstood.

Uninvited to the ball, he drove the third or fourth iteration of his same black sports car to Next, where he and his team were quietly inventing the platform on which Tim Berners-Lee would write the program for the World Wide Web.

Steve was like a girl in the amount of time he spent talking about love. Love was his supreme virtue, his god of gods. He tracked and worried about the romantic lives of the people working with him.

Whenever he saw a man he thought a woman might find dashing, he called out, “Hey are you single? Do you wanna come to dinner with my sister?”

I remember when he phoned the day he met Laurene. “There’s this beautiful woman and she’s really smart and she has this dog and I’m going to marry her.”

When Reed was born, he began gushing and never stopped. He was a physical dad, with each of his children. He fretted over Lisa’s boyfriends and Erin’s travel and skirt lengths and Eve’s safety around the horses she adored.

None of us who attended Reed’s graduation party will ever forget the scene of Reed and Steve slow dancing.

His abiding love for Laurene sustained him. He believed that love happened all the time, everywhere. In that most important way, Steve was never ironic, never cynical, never pessimistic. I try to learn from that, still.

Steve had been successful at a young age, and he felt that had isolated him. Most of the choices he made from the time I knew him were designed to dissolve the walls around him. A middle-class boy from Los Altos, he fell in love with a middle-class girl from New Jersey. It was important to both of them to raise Lisa, Reed, Erin and Eve as grounded, normal children. Their house didn’t intimidate with art or polish; in fact, for many of the first years I knew Steve and Lo together, dinner was served on the grass, and sometimes consisted of just one vegetable. Lots of that one vegetable. But one. Broccoli. In season. Simply prepared. With the just the right, recently snipped, herb.

Even as a young millionaire, Steve always picked me up at the airport. He’d be standing there in his jeans.

When a family member called him at work, his secretary Linetta answered, “Your dad’s in a meeting. Would you like me to interrupt him?”

When Reed insisted on dressing up as a witch every Halloween, Steve, Laurene, Erin and Eve all went wiccan.

They once embarked on a kitchen remodel; it took years. They cooked on a hotplate in the garage. The Pixar building, under construction during the same period, finished in half the time. And that was it for the Palo Alto house. The bathrooms stayed old. But — and this was a crucial distinction — it had been a great house to start with; Steve saw to that.

This is not to say that he didn’t enjoy his success: he enjoyed his success a lot, just minus a few zeros. He told me how much he loved going to the Palo Alto bike store and gleefully realizing he could afford to buy the best bike there.

And he did.

Steve was humble. Steve liked to keep learning.

Once, he told me if he’d grown up differently, he might have become a mathematician. He spoke reverently about colleges and loved walking around the Stanford campus. In the last year of his life, he studied a book of paintings by Mark Rothko, an artist he hadn’t known about before, thinking of what could inspire people on the walls of a future Apple campus.

Steve cultivated whimsy. What other C.E.O. knows the history of English and Chinese tea roses and has a favorite David Austin rose?

He had surprises tucked in all his pockets. I’ll venture that Laurene will discover treats — songs he loved, a poem he cut out and put in a drawer — even after 20 years of an exceptionally close marriage. I spoke to him every other day or so, but when I opened The New York Times and saw a feature on the company’s patents, I was still surprised and delighted to see a sketch for a perfect staircase.

With his four children, with his wife, with all of us, Steve had a lot of fun.

He treasured happiness.

Then, Steve became ill and we watched his life compress into a smaller circle. Once, he’d loved walking through Paris. He’d discovered a small handmade soba shop in Kyoto. He downhill skied gracefully. He cross-country skied clumsily. No more.

Eventually, even ordinary pleasures, like a good peach, no longer appealed to him.

Yet, what amazed me, and what I learned from his illness, was how much was still left after so much had been taken away.

I remember my brother learning to walk again, with a chair. After his liver transplant, once a day he would get up on legs that seemed too thin to bear him, arms pitched to the chair back. He’d push that chair down the Memphis hospital corridor towards the nursing station and then he’d sit down on the chair, rest, turn around and walk back again. He counted his steps and, each day, pressed a little farther.

Laurene got down on her knees and looked into his eyes.

“You can do this, Steve,” she said. His eyes widened. His lips pressed into each other.

He tried. He always, always tried, and always with love at the core of that effort. He was an intensely emotional man.

I realized during that terrifying time that Steve was not enduring the pain for himself. He set destinations: his son Reed’s graduation from high school, his daughter Erin’s trip to Kyoto, the launching of a boat he was building on which he planned to take his family around the world and where he hoped he and Laurene would someday retire.

Even ill, his taste, his discrimination and his judgment held. He went through 67 nurses before finding kindred spirits and then he completely trusted the three who stayed with him to the end. Tracy. Arturo. Elham.

One time when Steve had contracted a tenacious pneumonia his doctor forbid everything — even ice. We were in a standard I.C.U. unit. Steve, who generally disliked cutting in line or dropping his own name, confessed that this once, he’d like to be treated a little specially.

I told him: Steve, this is special treatment.

He leaned over to me, and said: “I want it to be a little more special.”

Intubated, when he couldn’t talk, he asked for a notepad. He sketched devices to hold an iPad in a hospital bed. He designed new fluid monitors and x-ray equipment. He redrew that not-quite-special-enough hospital unit. And every time his wife walked into the room, I watched his smile remake itself on his face.

For the really big, big things, you have to trust me, he wrote on his sketchpad. He looked up. You have to.

By that, he meant that we should disobey the doctors and give him a piece of ice.

None of us knows for certain how long we’ll be here. On Steve’s better days, even in the last year, he embarked upon projects and elicited promises from his friends at Apple to finish them. Some boat builders in the Netherlands have a gorgeous stainless steel hull ready to be covered with the finishing wood. His three daughters remain unmarried, his two youngest still girls, and he’d wanted to walk them down the aisle as he’d walked me the day of my wedding.

We all — in the end — die in medias res. In the middle of a story. Of many stories.

I suppose it’s not quite accurate to call the death of someone who lived with cancer for years unexpected, but Steve’s death was unexpected for us.

What I learned from my brother’s death was that character is essential: What he was, was how he died.

Tuesday morning, he called me to ask me to hurry up to Palo Alto. His tone was affectionate, dear, loving, but like someone whose luggage was already strapped onto the vehicle, who was already on the beginning of his journey, even as he was sorry, truly deeply sorry, to be leaving us.

He started his farewell and I stopped him. I said, “Wait. I’m coming. I’m in a taxi to the airport. I’ll be there.”

“I’m telling you now because I’m afraid you won’t make it on time, honey.”

When I arrived, he and his Laurene were joking together like partners who’d lived and worked together every day of their lives. He looked into his children’s eyes as if he couldn’t unlock his gaze.

Until about 2 in the afternoon, his wife could rouse him, to talk to his friends from Apple.

Then, after awhile, it was clear that he would no longer wake to us.

His breathing changed. It became severe, deliberate, purposeful. I could feel him counting his steps again, pushing farther than before.

This is what I learned: he was working at this, too. Death didn’t happen to Steve, he achieved it.

He told me, when he was saying goodbye and telling me he was sorry, so sorry we wouldn’t be able to be old together as we’d always planned, that he was going to a better place.

Dr. Fischer gave him a 50/50 chance of making it through the night.

He made it through the night, Laurene next to him on the bed sometimes jerked up when there was a longer pause between his breaths. She and I looked at each other, then he would heave a deep breath and begin again.

This had to be done. Even now, he had a stern, still handsome profile, the profile of an absolutist, a romantic. His breath indicated an arduous journey, some steep path, altitude.

He seemed to be climbing.

But with that will, that work ethic, that strength, there was also sweet Steve’s capacity for wonderment, the artist’s belief in the ideal, the still more beautiful later.

Steve’s final words, hours earlier, were monosyllables, repeated three times.

Before embarking, he’d looked at his sister Patty, then for a long time at his children, then at his life’s partner, Laurene, and then over their shoulders past them.

Steve’s final words were:


Mona Simpson is a novelist and a professor of English at the University of California, Los Angeles. She delivered this eulogy for her brother, Steve Jobs, on Oct. 16 at his memorial service at the Memorial Church of Stanford University.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Saving child labourers is big business

Craig Kielburger, age 12, on his first trip to...Image via WikipediaCampaigning on behalf of destitute children in Pakistan can earn millions for NGOs in the west. However, those millions are often spent to support lavish lifestyles of a few in the west while the destitute in Pakistan continue to suffer.

Each year, Canadians donate millions of dollars to not-for-profit organisations who are helping impoverished children in low-income countries. While many organisations receiving millions in donations for the poor in Pakistan help the needy, others have used the money to build small real estate fortunes while subsidising extravagant lifestyle of their founders.

One such organisation is Free the Children, a not-for-profit started in Toronto by Craig and Marc Kielburger while they were only teenagers. Free the Children and its sister organisations campaign against child labour and create opportunities for the youth to help other youths in need. While Kielburgers’ hard work and commitment is commendable, one is dismayed at the way Free the Children has been using a false story about the murder of a child labourer in Pakistan to further its cause over the past 16 years.

Saving child labourers is big business | Blog | DAWN.COM
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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011


Loosing gold to theft or negligence is very painful. But what to say of gold that is with you all the time, but looses in value. In the last few weeks, gold has started a downward descent from a high of $1,917 to a low of $1,600 per ounce. Furthermore, Gold Futures are also down so not much hope for a quick comeback.



While Gold has lost some shine recently, it has still outperformed Dow and S&P500 over a 12-month horizon.


Friday, September 23, 2011

Fundamentals improve but markets deteriorate

The Conference Board reported that its Leading Economic Indicators index rose 0.3% during August following July's revised 0.6% increase, initially set at 0.5%. The gain beat the Consensus forecast for a 0.1% rise. Despite the increase, however, the latest six-month growth rate as calculated by the Conference Board fell to 4.8%, the slowest since last August.
In conjunction with slower growth, the breadth of increase amongst the component series fell. The 1-month diffusion index dropped to 40%, its least since during the recession, and the 6-month diffusion index also eased to a low 55%. Money supply growth together with a steeper yield curve added 0.9 percentage points to the leader's August gain. Lower stock prices & consumer expectations as well as a shorter workweek offset the bulk of these positive influences.
The index of coincident indicators ticked up just 0.1%, the same as during July which was revised down from 0.3%. The 1-month diffusion index held up at 88% as did the 6-month index at 100%, but the six-month growth rate fell to 1.6%, its least since Q3 last year. Three of the component series rose last month but employment was unchanged.
In a sign that economic excesses built up, the August lagging indicator index rose 0.3% for the third straight month. Growth in bank lending to commercial and industrial customers accounted again for most of the increase. The ratio of coincident-to-lagging indicators, which tends to "lead" the "leaders," fell for the sixth month in the last seven.
Fragmentary items available thus far in September paint a picture that is not promising for another advance in the leading index. As seen yesterday, unemployment insurance claims moved up to 444,000, stock prices fell sharply, the yield curve flattened and the Univ. of Michigan Index of Consumer Expectations slipped. Offsetting these declines was the money supply which continues higher
The Conference Board figures are available in Haver's BCI database; the components are available there, and most are also in USECON. The forecast figure is the Consensus in the AS1REPNA database. Visit the Conference Board's site for coverage of leading indicator series from around the world."

Haver Analytics

Sunday, August 28, 2011

How bad was the recent recession

With a 6% decline in jobs and a 5% contraction in economy, the recession in 2007 was one of the worst in the past 60 years. See the graphical display by the Bloomberg



Monday, August 22, 2011

How declining cities can reverse their fortunes - The Globe and Mail

The Globe and Mail reports that the fastest growing metros in the US are doing so because of lower local and state taxes.
How declining cities can reverse their fortunes - The Globe and Mail

My response:

The correlation between lower taxes and high growth rates in some metropolitan areas in the US is spurious at best. While it may be true that metros with the highest population growth had a slightly lower average tax rate of 9.4% (against 10.6% for the lowest population growth metros), one cannot ignore the fact that the high growth metros are located in the US Sunbelt.

It is, therefore, not the lower tax rates, as Cato Institute would have us all believe, but the cheap air conditioning and oversupply of new housing that enabled rapid growth in metros located in the US Sunbelt.

Professor Edward Glaeser of Harvard University in 2007 observed that while the metros located in the Sunbelt have experienced above average increase in housing supply, the price of new housing increased at a slower pace in the Sunbelt than the rest of the US, which is indicative of an oversupplied housing market.

Furthermore, seven out of 10 highest population growth metros, reported in the Cato Institute’s paper, are located in States with the highest foreclosure rates, i.e., Nevada, California, Arizona, Georgia, and Florida.

"Why Are Some Cities Growing While Others Are Shrinking?," Cato Journal, 31, 2 (Spring/Summer 2011), 285-303.
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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Scotia Capital's economist catches the British mistake

The news lifted hopes for a fast recovery in the UK. According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) the construction activity in the UK had increased by 2.3% in the three months ending in June 2011. This was a manifold increase over 0.5% observed in the previous time periods. Within hours the economists all over the UK revised their estimates for GDP growth from 0.2% to 0.3%.

It was all fine until Alan Clarke, an economist with Scotia Capital noticed that if one averages the construction activity reported for April, May and June 2011, the result is a mere 0.5% increase and not 2.3% as the ONS had initially reported.

It turned out that an arithmetic mistake (i.e., simple addition, subtraction, division) caused the error.

Still not too late to send economists at ONS back for some refreshers in statistics.

ONS construction error moves markets - Telegraph
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Friday, August 19, 2011

Warren Buffet in New York Times

From the NY Times:

OUR leaders have asked for “shared sacrifice.” But when they did the asking, they spared me. I checked with my mega-rich friends to learn what pain they were expecting. They, too, were left untouched.
While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks. Some of us are investment managers who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as “carried interest,” thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate. Others own stock index futures for 10 minutes and have 60 percent of their gain taxed at 15 percent, as if they’d been long-term investors.
These and other blessings are showered upon us by legislators in Washington who feel compelled to protect us, much as if we were spotted owls or some other endangered species. It’s nice to have friends in high places.
Last year my federal tax bill — the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf — was $6,938,744. That sounds like a lot of money. But what I paid was only 17.4 percent of my taxable income — and that’s actually a lower percentage than was paid by any of the other 20 people in our office. Their tax burdens ranged from 33 percent to 41 percent and averaged 36 percent.
If you make money with money, as some of my super-rich friends do, your percentage may be a bit lower than mine. But if you earn money from a job, your percentage will surely exceed mine — most likely by a lot.
To understand why, you need to examine the sources of government revenue. Last year about 80 percent of these revenues came from personal income taxes and payroll taxes. The mega-rich pay income taxes at a rate of 15 percent on most of their earnings but pay practically nothing in payroll taxes. It’s a different story for the middle class: typically, they fall into the 15 percent and 25 percent income tax brackets, and then are hit with heavy payroll taxes to boot.
Back in the 1980s and 1990s, tax rates for the rich were far higher, and my percentage rate was in the middle of the pack. According to a theory I sometimes hear, I should have thrown a fit and refused to invest because of the elevated tax rates on capital gains and dividends.
I didn’t refuse, nor did others. I have worked with investors for 60 years and I have yet to see anyone — not even when capital gains rates were 39.9 percent in 1976-77 — shy away from a sensible investment because of the tax rate on the potential gain. People invest to make money, and potential taxes have never scared them off. And to those who argue that higher rates hurt job creation, I would note that a net of nearly 40 million jobs were added between 1980 and 2000. You know what’s happened since then: lower tax rates and far lower job creation.
Since 1992, the I.R.S. has compiled data from the returns of the 400 Americans reporting the largest income. In 1992, the top 400 had aggregate taxable income of $16.9 billion and paid federal taxes of 29.2 percent on that sum. In 2008, the aggregate income of the highest 400 had soared to $90.9 billion — a staggering $227.4 million on average — but the rate paid had fallen to 21.5 percent.
The taxes I refer to here include only federal income tax, but you can be sure that any payroll tax for the 400 was inconsequential compared to income. In fact, 88 of the 400 in 2008 reported no wages at all, though every one of them reported capital gains. Some of my brethren may shun work but they all like to invest. (I can relate to that.)
I know well many of the mega-rich and, by and large, they are very decent people. They love America and appreciate the opportunity this country has given them. Many have joined the Giving Pledge, promising to give most of their wealth to philanthropy. Most wouldn’t mind being told to pay more in taxes as well, particularly when so many of their fellow citizens are truly suffering.
Twelve members of Congress will soon take on the crucial job of rearranging our country’s finances. They’ve been instructed to devise a plan that reduces the 10-year deficit by at least $1.5 trillion. It’s vital, however, that they achieve far more than that. Americans are rapidly losing faith in the ability of Congress to deal with our country’s fiscal problems. Only action that is immediate, real and very substantial will prevent that doubt from morphing into hopelessness. That feeling can create its own reality.
Job one for the 12 is to pare down some future promises that even a rich America can’t fulfill. Big money must be saved here. The 12 should then turn to the issue of revenues. I would leave rates for 99.7 percent of taxpayers unchanged and continue the current 2-percentage-point reduction in the employee contribution to the payroll tax. This cut helps the poor and the middle class, who need every break they can get.
But for those making more than $1 million — there were 236,883 such households in 2009 — I would raise rates immediately on taxable income in excess of $1 million, including, of course, dividends and capital gains. And for those who make $10 million or more — there were 8,274 in 2009 — I would suggest an additional increase in rate.
My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress. It’s time for our government to get serious about shared sacrifice."

Warren E. Buffett is the chairman and chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway.

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