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Messages - T. Durden

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51
this thread keeps getting more and more awesome.

it appears that the current state of its awesomeness is driven by the apparent fact that those currently in the age bracket of 22-25 have a stark inability to take hyperbole for what it is


52
i dont hate lawyers, but i'm getting a good hate worked up for him.

hate? for what? complaining about the current state of the income tax structure? let me simplify my complaint for you: the "pure income earners" in this country carry absurd portion of the tax burden. *important note for LSD idealougues:* this is NOT a rich v. poor debate. phew, thank god we avoided that. this is a "income earners pay a ridic tax burden" v. "the huge % of very wealthy americans who get by by claiming unfair capital gains earnings and pay only 15% of total earnings to tax" argument. you may not understand it, fair enough. you'll get it once you start collecting that pay check.

do we still hate each other? ok fine. i knew that we would. ok ok i agree, the top 45% of society should pay at least 40% of earnigns into the tax system. there, can we be friends now? so, excited for that first real job once you graduate from law school?

53
Turden-
It sounds like you have your head so far up your ass that you are gonna need a colonic just to see daylight.  Let's start with the fact that you are complaining about making 160,000 fresh out of school.  Should I call the waambluance for you?  Despite the fact that you think you are "not rich" you live in a studio that costs 28k per year.  There are many many teachers in this world that have worked for over a decade and still don't make 40k a year.  Do you think they are stuck in "the 8ft by 7ft cramped-living-space-with-no-window routine" or that they somehow enjoy it?  Furthermore, you still make enough money to have a nice travel allowance and pay lots for "living expenses" which while you don't specify the general tone of your post makes me think that you are eating out at great restaurants, probably going to shows, wearing very nice threads, and taking nice classy vacations.  So, you are left over after all your playboy life expenses (bear in mind that even with you "crippling debt" you are still one of the most priveleged and lucky human beings in the history of the earth, spending-power wise) you take home "only" around 60k (again enough to pay the salary of two public school teachers who hold advanced degrees in education and work 50-60 hours a week dealing with emotionally disturbed, violent, or disabled children...again explain to me why you deserve sympathy?) which to you is somehow not enough money because you have 6 figure debt.  Now, if you were actually frugal you could probably pay of your debt within 5 years but it seems you are enjoying blowing massive wads of cash in every direction right now so that must be out of the question.  The fact that you had to borrow money to make it through the summer is also laughable, I know plenty of people who in recent months have been laid off, had hours cut, or are college grads who can't find work and yet manage to scrape by without taking out massive loans (I'm assuming you never got your living expenses below $1000/month, and OMG that's not impossible).  To add to your general arrogance, you assume you will only live an acceptable life if you make partner and compare the odds of that to winning the lotto which is clearly not the case, since the lotto is roughly 18 million to one while you already have the foot in the door at some of these firms, are from a top 20 school and seem to have it made- and while maybe its not likely odds of even say 20 to 1 or 100 to 1 are still infinitely better than the lottery, and your "fallback" prize is a 160k per year job with 40k per year bonuses- and you are complaining 112k per year after taxes because (hold on I'm starting to tear up here, let me grab some tissue) your plush 200k job actually gets taxed I mean with that extra 80k imagine how much better your life would be, I mean you could finally make it out of poverty!  Oh wait...

In short, this is exactly the sort of arrogance and hubris that makes people in this world hate lawyers, and in this case with a good amount of justification.  How about you try driving the bus for a year and see how you feel about the taxes you have to pay then?  Your 28k studio isn't gonna seem so reasonable then, I think.

a couple of thoughts:

1) dear god man, paragraphs, paragraphs,

2) i may or may not have seen a sentence or two in there referencing "bus drivers." for your sake i hope that it is the former. if / when you develop a semi-coherent argument, please let me know.

54
haha i like to think that you're doomed either way. i'm a recent t20 grad marking market rate in nyc. look at it from this perspective: my salary is 160k; i take home ~95k of that after taxes. of that 95k, i'm paying ~28k or so on basic rent (for a studio). some may say that that is a ridic sum to pay for rent in nyc. they're probably right, though at this stage of my life i like to think that i have progressed past the 8ft by 7ft cramped-living-space-with-no-window routine ... so i pay ~28k. my studio is decent; nothing too luxurious. besides, i don't know anyone in our first year class who isn't paying at least 24k in rent (including those who commute from the outer suburbs of brooklyn). see where this is going? so my 160k, after basic rent and taxes, is more like 65-67k. Ok, that's still decent money ... right? well yeah, i guess, but oh wait, i have that 6 figure debt to pay (on top of the money borrowed to make it through this summer) and then there's living expenses and travel expenses (to see family, friends, girlfriend, whatever) and ut oh ... looks like i'm still completely broke

but wait, at least i have my bonus, right? well yeah, my firm is doing well despite the downturn so who knows, maybe i'll get used to billing 11-a-day (soul crushing) and pull a nice 40k bonus. 40k, that's awesome money ...except, under our current income tax scheme (yes, it's going to get worse in 2010), i'll take home ~17k of that. 17 of 40? yeaaaah. i'd rather stick to 8 or 9 hrs billed per day and call it even. the whole government conscript thing never held much appeal for me anyway.

at least i have raises to look forward to. once i climb the salary ladder, i'll be fine. for example at 160k, i take home 95k. at 200k i take home 110k. at 250k, i take home 125k. so wait, my salary may increase from 160 to 250 in the next 5 years or so, but my take home only increases by 30!?? oh poo, i'm DOOMED ...

... unless of course i make nyc biglaw partner. haha yeah, that's likely. i have a better statistical probabilty of, well, winning the lotto. anyone know what the powerball is up to this month? [and lets not forget the massive opportunity cost posed by taking 3 years off from work to obtain the degree + the massive loans required to do so - it will be years before i even approach the break-even point]

anyway, the point is that you're doomed no matter what you do. generating wealth through income alone is not the smart play (as the income tax bracket is brutal on both the state and fed levels). now if you could somehow make $ through capital gains (flat 15% tax rate) then you might be able to get ahead.

but yeah, don't go into the law looking to get rich. for 99.5% of us, it's not happening (and that includes those of us in biglaw)



Assuming you're paying approximately $30K/year on your loans, that's still quite a bit of discretionary income.  If you are really having trouble making your budget stretch, I recommend saving $11K/year by moving into a nice $1400/mo. studio. 

a "nice $1400/mo. studio?" clearly you do not live in NYC, or at least i hope that you don't. ok, maybe you do. maybe you're ok with the 7x8 with no windows routine. maybe i failed to make it clear that at this point in my life (i.e. biglaw attny) i wanted something that wasN'T horrendous (emphasis on the n't) in terms of overall floor space allocation and liveability. i know i know, it can be done. i did the $1400 routine as a NYC SA. needless to say, i became sick of kicking various forms of rodentia on the way home from work in the late afternoon. i get it, i'm a snob ... a snob who thinks that his 560 sq ft of living space should come pest free. shame on me, shame on me. btw, i hope that you're comfortable with the concept of working ridic hours at a ridic hourly rate (try $350/hr) to support that 1.5-2.5 mil/yr. partner salary. i'm predicting either 1) a selling-out of your college level ideology, or 2) a cutting-and-running. i'm predicting a #1 by a 99.9 to .1 probability. just my thoughts...

55
haha i like to think that you're doomed either way. i'm a recent t20 grad marking market rate in nyc. look at it from this perspective: my salary is 160k; i take home ~95k of that after taxes. of that 95k, i'm paying ~28k or so on basic rent (for a studio). some may say that that is a ridic sum to pay for rent in nyc. they're probably right, though at this stage of my life i like to think that i have progressed past the 8ft by 7ft cramped-living-space-with-no-window routine ... so i pay ~28k. my studio is decent; nothing too luxurious. besides, i don't know anyone in our first year class who isn't paying at least 24k in rent (including those who commute from the outer suburbs of brooklyn). see where this is going? so my 160k, after basic rent and taxes, is more like 65-67k. Ok, that's still decent money ... right? well yeah, i guess, but oh wait, i have that 6 figure debt to pay (on top of the money borrowed to make it through this summer) and then there's living expenses and travel expenses (to see family, friends, girlfriend, whatever) and ut oh ... looks like i'm still completely broke

but wait, at least i have my bonus, right? well yeah, my firm is doing well despite the downturn so who knows, maybe i'll get used to billing 11-a-day (soul crushing) and pull a nice 40k bonus. 40k, that's awesome money ...except, under our current income tax scheme (yes, it's going to get worse in 2010), i'll take home ~17k of that. 17 of 40? yeaaaah. i'd rather stick to 8 or 9 hrs billed per day and call it even. the whole government conscript thing never held much appeal for me anyway.

at least i have raises to look forward to. once i climb the salary ladder, i'll be fine. for example at 160k, i take home 95k. at 200k i take home 110k. at 250k, i take home 125k. so wait, my salary may increase from 160 to 250 in the next 5 years or so, but my take home only increases by 30!?? oh poo, i'm DOOMED ...

... unless of course i make nyc biglaw partner. haha yeah, that's likely. i have a better statistical probabilty of, well, winning the lotto. anyone know what the powerball is up to this month? [and lets not forget the massive opportunity cost posed by taking 3 years off from work to obtain the degree + the massive loans required to do so - it will be years before i even approach the break-even point]

anyway, the point is that you're doomed no matter what you do. generating wealth through income alone is not the smart play (as the income tax bracket is brutal on both the state and fed levels). now if you could somehow make $ through capital gains (flat 15% tax rate) then you might be able to get ahead.

but yeah, don't go into the law looking to get rich. for 99.5% of us, it's not happening (and that includes those of us in biglaw)



How much of your debt are you planning on paying back per year?

Also, how much are you investing? 

i attended on a partial scholarship and thus owe a total of ~60k or so. i expect that if i am sufficently disciplined i can have this sum paid off within 2 or 2.5 years or so.

investing? seriously? como se dice? note to all law students out there: "investing" is not some sort of amorphic concept that is guaranteed to generate dividends once you reach a predetermined salary level. it's high risk and it's long term. first year's do not venure into the realm of stocks, etc. in search of means to pay off student loans, credit card debit, and the like. the mere suggestion that this is something that i should be doing at this point to either 1) alleviate the debt burden, or 2) obtain some form of tax relief is borderline mind-numbing ... 

56
General Board / Re: Does the second semester suck any less?
« on: December 10, 2008, 01:01:25 PM »
oh it never stops sucking. and that applies to what comes after law school, too.

57
haha i like to think that you're doomed either way. i'm a recent t20 grad marking market rate in nyc. look at it from this perspective: my salary is 160k; i take home ~95k of that after taxes. of that 95k, i'm paying ~28k or so on basic rent (for a studio). some may say that that is a ridic sum to pay for rent in nyc. they're probably right, though at this stage of my life i like to think that i have progressed past the 8ft by 7ft cramped-living-space-with-no-window routine ... so i pay ~28k. my studio is decent; nothing too luxurious. besides, i don't know anyone in our first year class who isn't paying at least 24k in rent (including those who commute from the outer suburbs of brooklyn). see where this is going? so my 160k, after basic rent and taxes, is more like 65-67k. Ok, that's still decent money ... right? well yeah, i guess, but oh wait, i have that 6 figure debt to pay (on top of the money borrowed to make it through this summer) and then there's living expenses and travel expenses (to see family, friends, girlfriend, whatever) and ut oh ... looks like i'm still completely broke

but wait, at least i have my bonus, right? well yeah, my firm is doing well despite the downturn so who knows, maybe i'll get used to billing 11-a-day (soul crushing) and pull a nice 40k bonus. 40k, that's awesome money ...except, under our current income tax scheme (yes, it's going to get worse in 2010), i'll take home ~17k of that. 17 of 40? yeaaaah. i'd rather stick to 8 or 9 hrs billed per day and call it even. the whole government conscript thing never held much appeal for me anyway.

at least i have raises to look forward to. once i climb the salary ladder, i'll be fine. for example at 160k, i take home 95k. at 200k i take home 110k. at 250k, i take home 125k. so wait, my salary may increase from 160 to 250 in the next 5 years or so, but my take home only increases by 30!?? oh poo, i'm DOOMED ...

... unless of course i make nyc biglaw partner. haha yeah, that's likely. i have a better statistical probabilty of, well, winning the lotto. anyone know what the powerball is up to this month? [and lets not forget the massive opportunity cost posed by taking 3 years off from work to obtain the degree + the massive loans required to do so - it will be years before i even approach the break-even point]

anyway, the point is that you're doomed no matter what you do. generating wealth through income alone is not the smart play (as the income tax bracket is brutal on both the state and fed levels). now if you could somehow make $ through capital gains (flat 15% tax rate) then you might be able to get ahead.

but yeah, don't go into the law looking to get rich. for 99.5% of us, it's not happening (and that includes those of us in biglaw)


58
General Board / Re: NY/NJ Bar
« on: November 10, 2008, 10:48:44 PM »
NY bar results are supposedly going to be released any day now...

i'm somehow both anxious and ambivalent at the same time - i think that maybe i'm just ready for the waiting to be over, one way or another

59
... which is f*cking ridiculous IMHO. there's not much point in sacrificing on weekends, giving up vacation time, etc. to take home 17k of a 40k bonus. i'm taking my 3 weeks vaycay ;).

60
so ~50% makes sense then. anything that you take in beyond 160 would most likely be taxed as earnings within that bracket. my #ers are admittedly fuzzy here, but i think that anything 145ish (maybe 150ish) plus is in the 38-39% federal bracket. couple this fed tax with a the normal state tax and you're at 50, if not beyond.

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