Open Thread, Monday 26 August 2013

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About GruntOfMonteCristo

Fearless and Devout Catholic Christian First, Loving Husband and Father Second, Pissed-Off Patriot Third, Rocket Engineer Dork Last.
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31 Responses to Open Thread, Monday 26 August 2013

  1. texan59 says:

    Update on Mickelson and taxes. Why work that hard and then give up over 60% of what you earn. πŸ‘Ώ

    http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-Sports/2013/08/23/lefty-high-taxes-do-not-want-to-make-me-work-harder

  2. ZurichMike says:

    Swiss tax rates are nowhere near the confiscatory rates of the UK, Scandanavia, Germany, or France. But we also have better infrastructure and financial discipline. Example: our county took in more taxes than they needed according to budgeted expenses. Instead of spending it on something else unbudgeted, it was held for the following years on the condition that the tax rate was lowered to compensate. Works for me!

    • barnslayer says:

      As an ex-pat are you allowed to own property in Switzerland?

      • ZurichMike says:

        Yes — generally you won’t get a mortgage loan unless you have permanent residency or citizenship (a way to reduce speculation by outsiders). Another way to reduce speculation is that there is a penalty for flipping property (I think it’s a 5 year minimum “hold”). I own a nice 1,500 square foot flat of a six-unit building (there are four such buildings in our complex), and each is three floors, divided down the middle. Ours is a top floor flat with a nice open terrace in front the runs the length of the flat, and a smaller terrace out back.

        Even those with great jobs needs to put 20% down on a home (30% or more if it’s a second property). Amazing what having skin in the game does for the upkeep of property. Usually you get two mortgages to spread the risk. Rates are decent depending on the type of loan. We opted for two fixed-rate mortgage, each around 3.5% (six years ago, that was “high” in Switzerland), one payable in 5 years, the other in 9 years. We paid off the 5 year when it came due (rather than rolling it over into another mortgage) and have saved already enough to pay off the second mortgage in 2016. That means we’ll be free and clear 9 years after purchase. We can’t wait to get rid of the mortgage. I see no economic value in paying the bank a dollar so I can save 30 cents on my taxes.

        Property rarely loses value in Switzerland because it’s all about location-location-location and the great infrastructure, landscape, and quality of life. Our village was voted highest quality of life in the entire Canton of Zurich last year (combination of tax rate, access to shopping, downtown Zurich, nature, and tranquility). Our property value has increased 20% in 6 years. To give you an idea of property prices, we purchased new for $900,000 (and that was considered a bargain back then). You could not get an apartment of our size and quality-of-life near Zurich now for under $1.25 million. It’s insane. But we did it by sacrificing (no new cars, no fancy clothes or expensive vacations). It can be done.

        Too much information for many, I am sure. But it was an interesting experience going through the purchase of property in Switzerland. We purchased new, so in finishing the flat, my job allowed me to be home to deal with contractors and tile guys and floor guys and painters. My technical German vocabulary skyrocketed — and I had to figure out some of this in Swiss German, too! Many times I had to default to “das Dingsbums” (the thingamajig) if I didn’t know the word!

    • It is shocking that in the whole world, the Swiss are practically the only ones with the discipline to run a country responsibly. Makes you wonder what’s wrong with the rest of the world. Every other country is full of politicians who look at the Swiss example and say: “Yeah, let’s NOT do that. Let’s go spend some more! Hoo hoo!!”

      • ZurichMike says:

        When that socialist nitwit Hollande from France raised taxes on the rich to 75% (no joke), many left and established residencies in Switzerland. Hollande screamed at Switzerland that this drain on France’s coffers was unfair and insisted that Switzerland *raise* its taxes to stem the tide of money flowing out of France. It never entered his stupid, clueless, socialist pin brain that maybe if France *lowered* its taxes, its rich citizens wouldn’t leave.

  3. texan59 says:

    Just saw this over on FB. Caveat – it’s from WND and is over five years old, but I don’t remember hearing anything about Grumpy grandpa John’s ties to Soros before, but if it’s true, it sure explains a lot. πŸ‘Ώ

    http://mobile.wnd.com/2008/02/56177/#Biw1OYtRYGuokuuE.01

    • I didn’t believe this during the 2008 election, but I do now. I think there’s strong evidence that McLame was never the war hero he was portrayed as. He might have been a collaborator while a POW, and at some point, he got involved with the bad guys here in Washington, including Soros and Kerry (who has other outright treasonous ties). Grumpy grandpa John ain’t so fuzzy wuzzy after all.

      • texan59 says:

        Don’t know about his doings in captivity, but ever since he’s been in DC, there have been things swirling around him since at least the Keating 5 scandal. I’m sure I’ve forgotten some of his other gems.

  4. America’s race situation not exactly the envy of the world.
    Could Barack have headed this off? You bet he could have. Did he? Hell no. He made it much worse. Thanks, Barry! You Bastard.
    http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/08/the_rise_of_a_violent_underclass.html

  5. Pistol Pete says:

    I am an electronic retard.Grunt told me to copy&paste url of any photos I’d like to show here.I couldn’t get an url from the scan in my file folder,but this is from the scource.If it doesn’t work,please delete the whole post.No biggie.

    http://thelookingspoon.com/106-jared-mca/photos/photo.html?albumid=12&photoid=1847

    That works just fine, Pete! Good one! -Grunt

  6. From the video: “It’s all white people talk about.” From my cousin: “Dude. You ARE Heisenberg!” πŸ˜€

  7. barnslayer says:

    Just when I thought I had this all figured out….. Saudis are backing the Egyptian army against pro-morsi forces…………
    http://www.france24.com/en/20130825-qaeda-head-slams-saudi-support-egypt

    • Ruh? I thought the Saudis were Sunnis (like the MBs) and paid for Barack’s edumacation. So, wouldn’t they be backing HIM up by supporting the MBs? I’m confused, too.

      • texan59 says:

        They have to make sure the oil gets through the Suez. No guarantee with the MB. Maybe???

        • Could be. Maybe they’ve changed their minds, too. Big money always trying to back the winners, whoever they turn out to be. I guess.

          • barnslayer says:

            My problem with this is it contradicts my whole theory of arab spring. I figured the Saudis were behind 9-11 and have been playing the US for fools all along. The supposedly spontaneous “rebellions for freedom” all appeared to be orchestrated by the same mind. And the moslem brotherhood is always on the scene to “help restore order” and eventually take over. My feeling was the Saudis were using the MB to consolidate the arab world under Saudi control. Oblamer is on board with the MB, CAIR and the rebellions. The US has been kissing Saudi butt for many years and oblamer is no exception. Now this major glitch shows up in the form of the Egyptian army tossing out MB and oblamer’s buddy morsi. The Saudis siding with the other side make me wonder what they are up to. Could this be the royal family courting Putin? Or are they playing both sides just to keep a low profile while they plan attacks in Lebanon or elsewhere?

            • I completely follow you up to the point where the Saudis back the Egyptian military, and I’m just as mystified as you about that. My feeling is that the hatred for the MB in Egypt was not expected by the chess players in Riyadh. Perhaps they really just did this to save face now that it’s obvious that things are going the other way? I really can’t tell.

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