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A $18 Million Per Year Investment Plan for Democrats to Control the Texas House

In 2020, Texas Democrats had raised $26.7 million by the end of July for Texas Congressional races.

Given the outcome, that was not money well spent.

Democrats nationally spent $6.9 billion on White House and Congressional elections.

It’s inevitable that some of this money is wasted. Money is spent on candidates who either have no chance of winning or who are almost certainly guaranteed to win, no matter how much money they spend.

Yet, it is on the state and local level that many of the issues which affect people are decided. For example, once Dobbs was overturned, … Read the article

Long Term Travel Observations and Costs for Köln, Germany

We recently finished a 29 day stay in Köln, Germany. When I was stationed in Germany, Köln was one of my favorite cities. We had friends who lived there and worked as translators, so we often went and stayed with them. I also went to Weiberfasching or Weiberfastnacht every year I was there, so I had a lot of good experiences with Köln. The problem was that I’d never actually done much in Köln itself, so, while I had great memories of it, I actually had no idea what life would be like as a long-term traveler staying there for … Read the article

The Art of Deciphering AirBnB Listings and Reviews

In our long-term travels in the past couple of years, we’ve predominantly stayed in AirBnBs.

AirBnB relies on a mutual rating system to provide trust amongst both providers of housing and conusmers of that housing. Just like Uber does, ratings are provided both to properties as well as to renters.

Steven Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner wrote about a practice in their book Freakonomics (#aff) where Realtors would use code words to try to, as a friend of mine once described, “shine a turd.” By using euphemisms, Realtors tried to put a positive spin on the properties that they … Read the article

Our Expat Costs and Observations of Manchester, England

“We’re not arrogant, we just believe we’re the best band in the world.”
–Noel Gallagher

We recently spent 32 days in Manchester, England, covering the entire month of August. We had no real expectations of the city when we arrived, but were utterly amazed at how much character and life it has, and we wound up falling in love with the city. It is now one of the cities that we will have on our short list of places that we’d like to return to and spend more time in.

Our Activities in Manchester

Just like with all of the … Read the article

Costs of Long-Term Travel in Istanbul, Turkey: A Six-Week Trip Report

We spent the past six weeks in Istanbul, Turkey, evaluating it as a long-term destination for more extended travels. Istanbul is the largest city we’ve been to in our travels, with an official(ish) population of 16 million, and whispers of it having more than 20 million people due to the influx of refugees from the ongoing Syrian civil war. It was also wracked by inflation while we were there. We saw prices of common toiletries jump by 20% in our six weeks in Istanbul, and the currency exchange rate fluctuated wildly.

Source

As a result, we wound up withdrawing 500 … Read the article