Sunday, July 25, 2010

A Question

If the NBA didn't have salary ceilings, with what team would Lebron James have signed?

I think it would have been between New York and Cleveland. The idea being Cleveland would have had to give him at least a 10% stake in the team. New York could have paid him $50 million a year and still have made money. I am assuming classic economic theory that he would have ended up where his marginal product was the highest. So rephrasing the question, where would Lebron James' marginal product have been the highest? Would Miami still have been in the mix due to the "no state income tax" factor? What about Dallas and Mark Cuban and Cowboys Stadium and "no state income tax"?

Part of what I am getting at is that this whole Lebron fiasco was caused by salary ceilings. The NBA changed the game to make endorsement money more important than it would be without ceilings. Given the ceiling, it makes sense that Lebron considered his friendships and personal feelings in his (the) decision.

It worries me that more people aren't talking about this perverse effect of ceilings.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Numbers 2141-2142 Why Microsoft (Vista) Sucks

2141.  For the last two months, Vista has told me that my "copy of Windows is not genuine."  I have the code off the bottom of the computer.  I also have a code on the Vista Ultimate disk.  My copy of Windows is genuine.  It really is.  Notice that my copy of Windows not being genuine has actually made the computer perform better.

2142.  Every three or four days, usually in the afternoon, my computer suddenly crashes.  Yes this might be a hardware problem.  But the fact that it always starts back up fine tells me that it isn't that big of a deal.  And the fact that Microsoft cannot pin point the problem for me tells me that they don't have a clue.

I wanted to make this grandiose point about how the Microsoft model of putting products out there before they are stable has infected Google and other companies too.  (I also think that this has hit Apple a little bit too, but their track record is so much better.)  But the thing is I still use Microsoft and Google products.  So I guess I either have to do something about it or shut up.    

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The NBA And Heat

  1. The only NBA game I have ever seen was this year when the Spurs played the Heat. I will more than likely never see the Heat play again unless I purchase season tickets.
  2. The Heat will be a great natural experiment in economics, psychology, and sociology. We'll see what happens. I can't wait for the book that will come out about the next three years in Miami.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Adam Carolla Dilemma

(This was written Wednesday.)

I sat behind this couple and their son on the plane. The couple was older. You could tell the son was their miracle. He was their life.

He told some joke that was not funny, and they laughed and laughed. They even roped the flight attendant into laughing. It was kind of sad. The kid thought he was funny. But he wasn't even remotely funny. His parents were acting. The flight attendant was acting. The boy was living a lie.

All I could think about was being Adam Carolla's kid. Adam Carolla wouldn't laugh at his unfunny kid. He would have told his kid "that isn't funny." And his kid might grow up to be really damn funny in an effort to please his dad. Or he might not. But the kid would know the difference between funny and unfunny.

The point here is that many kids are instilled with a false sense of confidence. I think this is partially Tiger Woods' problem. People have always looked the other way. They laughed at his unfunny jokes. There is no doubt that Tiger is/was a great golfer, but nobody told him "no" when it came to his personal life. You see some of this in LeBron James too. There is no doubt he is a great player. But it seems nobody has told him: "You're not funny. Pick a damn team and win a championship."

Adam Carolla's son will know the difference between "funny and unfunny." (I actually have no idea if this is true or not. Adam Carolla's son might turn out to be pampered.) But he might also have a ton of insecurities that keep him from his own personal greatness. The ocular block that Pat Jordan talks about is aided by this undying, usually delusional, confidence in oneself. Not knowing the difference between funny and unfunny helps sustain this confidence.

But I worry about the unfunny kid when his classmates and friends tell him how big of a loser he is.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Soccer In HD Or More Discussion Of Things I Know Nothing About

1.  The yellow card rule where you get one in consecutive games and you are out of the next game is stupid.

2.  FIFA should adopt the NBA way of being able to review and rescind.  This reminds me of my "mandatory review" (number 3 in this post) versus automatic suspension idea.  

3.  Both Ghana and Uruguay were better than the U.S.  The U.S. are not one of the top ten teams in soccer in the world.