Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Old People and Capitalism

Now that title mentions a couple of unrelated topics, and they are going to remain so in this blog.


My 50th high school reunion was held last weekend, and about half my 17-member class attended. The whole deal was full of old people.

One of the topics of conversation was the senior prank that Ray Pilakowski and I pulled off which I had forgotten. One night we removed all the books from the lockers and stacked them in the girls' bathroom. Nothing was harmed, but lots of people were annoyed. A lot of folks were pretty ok with it, though, as they got the day off from school because nobody had books. No one knew until a long time later, either.

My oldest daughter, Amy, and her daughter, Anna, went with me, mostly to see the farm and such. Not sure I know what to think about my granddaughter hearing that story about Grandpa.

Back home now, tired and not sure what to make of it, but will probably talk some more later.


Now, the capitalism angle. Yahoo! bought Tumblr for $1.1 billion. In cash. Do you know what Tumblr's revenue amounted to last year? Don't confuse profits with total revenue as there were no profits. In the article I read, the advice when estimating revenue was, "Go lower." Yep, total annual revenue of $14 million, or about the same as a modest retail store in a strip center.

The point of the author was that the free market, capitalism, makes all kinds of mistakes all the time. I sort of had high hope for the new celebrity CEO of Yahoo!, Marissa Mayer, who the author called the Danica Patrick of tech. But this isn't just ludicrous, it is insane.

At the end of the article there is another astute observation--the Republicans would benefit from admitting that the free market, capitalism makes mistakes rather than defending the stupid stuff.

Unstated is that capitalism, despite its faults is so much superior to any other system.

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