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  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    A metaphor is a writing tool which allows one to compare two unlike things. In my example, the car represents Amazon, and being broken down represents the failure of Subscribe & Save, a.k.a. orders constantly being cancelled. The comparison I'm making between the two is that if something is broken, whether it is a car, or a service, it will remain broken until fixed.

    Let me give you an example. Your brake line is cut and your brake fluid leaks out of the car. As a result, when you push your brake pedal, there's no pressure in the line to compress the brake pads. Let's fast forward 1-1/2 years. Let's pretend you haven't replaced your brake lines. No matter how much brake fluid your pour into your car, the brakes still won't work because you didn't fix the problem. Even if you wait 20 years without fixing the brake lines, the brakes still won't work.

    Now, instead of a car, you have a service that lets people choose items that they want shipped to their house on a regular service. Let's pretend the service is broken. By this I mean that every few months, the items that someone chose are removed and never replaced. That means that after you set up your service, after a short time you will stop receiving items because they are no longer available. Now, let's fast forward 1-1/2 years. You choose new items to get shipped to your house. Even though some time has passed, these items are again made unavailable. The problem with the service has not been fixed, therefore, you don't get your items.

    In both cases, you have a problem that isn't fixed. After some arbitrary amount of time has passed, you check on the problem. If it still hasn't been fixed, the problem will continue. That, my friend, is the relevancy of the car metaphor.

    To take this a step forward, the Subscribe & Save problem is that you can choose your items from Amazon, but Amazon won't have them available. This is especially relevant to the Seinfeld quote that Griobhtha used because in both cases a reservation is being made which the company is unable to fulfill. If Griobhtha made this post in 1913 it would be just as relevant to the article.

    Edit: This is as far as I'm willing to go explaining the relevancy of a quote I pulled. I have neither the time nor the crayons to teach you this.
    Jan 13, 2015. 06:43 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    Let me ask you a somewhat unrelated question; there may be some metaphorical significance.

    If your car broke down 1-1/2 years ago and you never fixed it, would it still be broken?

    The comment might be 1-1/2 years old, but orders are still being cancelled. If you looked at the comments from 2014 that I linked to, they're saying the same thing. I just didn't choose them because they didn't have the funny Seinfeld quote.
    Jan 13, 2015. 04:16 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    What does it matter when the comment was made? The issue still exists and is just as relevant. That post wasn't included in the "12 out of 35". It's just another one I looked at that described frustration with Amazon frequently cancelling orders.
    Jan 13, 2015. 02:32 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    One third of all the 2014 posts in the S&S forum were voicing dissatisfaction with the product. While people having issues are more likely to be voicing their opinion, they also represent a much larger population that is having the same dissatisfaction.
    Jan 13, 2015. 12:49 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    Well, they've increased SSS to $35, created "add-on" items that don't count towards prime, and now Prime Pantry. They might just have to get their own fleet of trucks and drivers.
    Jan 13, 2015. 12:47 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    What are you trying to say? Gotta shop somewhere.
    Jan 13, 2015. 11:58 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    Amazon's strategy has been to take a loss on shipping to get more customers. They're finding out that it's just as easy to lose customers. I didn't mention it in the article, but I found on some of the forums that people have been noticing prices are sometimes higher with Prime service than if you buy the item without Prime. They're basically hiding the cost of shipping with a higher sale price.
    Jan 13, 2015. 11:14 AM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Quit Playing Games With My Amazon [View article]
    My bad. I was thinking of 2012 when the stock price plummeted and they had a huge restructuring. Thanks for the comment. I'll see if I can have this corrected.
    Jan 13, 2015. 11:00 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Forget To Collect Your Seadrill Dividend [View article]
    That's correct, Mr. Reitman. First in, first out. In Orthoeconomics' scenario though, it's not really a benefit. Say you buy 1 share at $10. One year later the price drops to $5 and you both buy and sell 1 share at the same time. According to the IRS you've taken a $5 loss on that first share because you sold it for half the price and you can claim that loss against your taxes. Your stock seems to be unaffected because you still hold that 1 share. Unfortunately, what you'll find is that if the stock price goes back up to $10 and you sell, you're now making a $5 profit. The taxes on that negate the tax deduction from the loss. If you had just held the share when it dropped to $5 and let it recover, you can sell for no profit and therefore pay no taxes. The real trick for this to work is when you only care about the dividends and don't plan on selling for a profit.
    Jan 8, 2015. 11:47 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Forget To Collect Your Seadrill Dividend [View article]
    I apologize if the title is misleading. It was meant to illustrate the point of the article, which is that there are ways of making up for the bad situation Seadrill holders are in.
    Jan 8, 2015. 10:40 AM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Don't Panic, Grab Seadrill Out Of The Bargain Bin Instead [View article]
    Wouldn't Bollinger Bands indicate that SDRL is oversold, from hanging out on the lower band for a few weeks without crossing the moving average?
    Sep 29, 2014. 10:27 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • IBM Is A Buy - Chinese Companies Still Prefer Its Servers [View article]
    "Furthermore, the Chinese bankers would rather have the Americans spy on them rather than the People's Liberation Army."

    That's a bold statement to be used as reasoning for sticking with IBM servers. Do you have a source for that or is that just your opinion?
    Jun 9, 2014. 07:54 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Seadrill Conundrum [View article]
    Yes, this article is on SDRL, not SDLP. In fact, I don't even think SDLP existed when I wrote this.

    Michael, if you were hypothetically considering buying more of this company, you might want to look at the SDLP because an MLP or LP provides tax sheltering that an ordinary stock does not. For these too though, I think the 12% dividend versus the 6.2% distribution more than makes up for the added tax savings, not to mention the headache that filing taxes for an MLP is.
    Apr 24, 2014. 03:41 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Wells Fargo Isn't What You Think It Is, And Why That's Important [View article]
    Great article. I really enjoyed it.
    Jan 22, 2014. 09:32 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How General Electric's Buyback Leads To 10% Annual Dividend Growth [View article]
    Yeah, there's something I didn't really think about but gives a better explanation why a buyback could be better than just paying out the $2B per quarter. When a company pays out cash, like a dividend or this hypothetical special dividend, the stock price is adjusted downward to reflect the balance sheet. The net affect is no change, but what it essentially would be doing is lowering the price and forcing you to hold on to the stock to make up for the loss associated with the special dividend. Of course if you're planning on holding long term, this doesn't really matter. On the other hand, it does act as a deterrent from just buying the stock before the "ex-special-dividend" and selling the next day because the price would be adjusted downward.
    Jan 14, 2014. 07:58 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment