Maybe he's in town to see how his Dedham store is doing

Fountainhead yacht in Boston Harbor

Fountainhead, a yacht owned by Sears CEO and Ayn Rand fanboi Eddie Lampert, is back in Boston Harbor this morning, as Scott G. Sewall alerts us.

Just kidding about the Dedham store, of course. It closed a couple weeks ago, one of the roughly 250 Sears and K-Marts stores being shut this year as revenues continue to drop like a large rock.

The yacht last visited Boston last year. Lampert, ever the kidder, claimed Mark Cuban owns it.



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He's in town because he's

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He's in town because he's buying a few $900k condos at slip65 over in East Boston, just in time before they sell out.

NY Times article about the CEO who brought down Sears

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A fellow who has helped Sears diminish owns a yacht? So his economic fortune has no connection to the fortunes of all the people he has laid off. He probably loves Charles Koch. The consummate capitalist whose only interests that the rich get richer and the rest die off.

Of course not

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He even sold the property to his second company, you know, the largest assets the stores held.

Vulture Capitalism is still around. If you can control the board, you can strip the assets of a company to the Bone and pocket it all. Totally legal.

Just ask Mitt Romney.

Big climax

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I've never had the misfortune to read an Ayn Rand novel, but I seem to remember hearing that The Fountainhead culminates with the masterful, brilliant, wealth-creating romantic-rapist hero destroying his own creation, the skyscraper of the title. I wonder if Mr. Lampert has similar plans. His insurers are forewarned.

Check out the Atlas Shrugged

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Check out the Atlas Shrugged trilogy they made a few years ago. As long as your expectations are realistic, you won't be disappointed.

If he sinks...

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If that yacht goes under while at sea, would he go down with his ship or expect the people-funded Coast Guard to save him?

Also, do we have the means to pull up all the buoys and beacons and turn off the lighthouses while he's coming and going?

Ayn Rand was also a person

I'm not going to sit here and defend every tenet of Ayn Rand's ideology, but unless she evaded her taxes, she was right to claim services that she had already paid for.

Not really

I believe that certain government programs ought to be expanded even if it means paying more taxes. The fact that I don't make voluntary contributions toward those programs -- that I'm not willing to fund them unless everyone else has skin in the game too -- does not make me a hypocrite.

But that's the opposite

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I believe in a welfare state, but I feel that I have a duty to avoid the programs because if everyone used them, the costs would increase. That said, if I needed to use the programs I would. No hypocrisy. The hypocrisy is when one uses the programs the same person decries.

That's insane. We all pay

That's insane. We all pay enormous amounts of federal taxes. I disagree with my money being stolen from me for these taxes. But they already took my money and spent it on something.

The point that you're missing, and the point that makes it not hypocrisy, is that if our 30%-50% of our money wasn't stolen from us, if we had that money as our own, we would never be in a situation where we needed to use state resources.

Breaking it down for you - I make 100 dollars. Goverment takes $40. I firmly am against the government stealing my $40, but I can't stop them. I get sick. I need $80 to get better. Well, now I only have $60 left because the government stole the other $40. If they hadn't robbed me, I would get my $80 in health care, but they did rob me. Anyone would be insane to die instead of utilizing a service that you already paid for, that if you weren't stolen from, you yourself could have easily paid for.

and let's not forget that the government is failing to do anything with our money that helps us. We have a war mongerer in the office, we have a military bigger than every country combined, our federal roads are in disrepair, and the PART THAT EVERYONE FORGETS! - we operate under a trillions of dollars deficit and are in debt what we could not pay out. Remember Bill Clinton - only a few presidents ago. Not that long. He had a BALANCED BUDGET!! Our deficit was decreasing. We were on track. Then Bush and Obama just went fucking crazy with spending and set a new trend where fiscal responsibility is just not a concern of the state. It's unsustainable. How do you not see that operating at a TRILLIONS of dollars debt continuously is unsustainable? And that we're continuing to get into debt?

So the government steals from us. Spends the money on military and wars we don't want. Doesn't fix shit around home. But you support that? You support the war machine we've become - the irresponsible spending that has us TRILLIONS in debit - the complete lack of assistance at home for what americans really need help with? We don't need to fight a war in Afghanistan. We need help here and now with drug abuse, unemployment, roads that work, better education (we're behind like Pakistan or something in our ranking). The VA is a joke. The list goes on and on.

In the industrialized world,

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In the industrialized world, Americans have some of the lowest taxes. You don't have to like it, but don't be dramatic.

I disagree

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Taxes are the price we pay for civilization. We could quibble about defense spending or health care, but in the end somehow the body politic has decreed how communal money will be obtained and spent (ways and means if you will.)

If whatever program Rand thought was a waste was such a waste, she wouldn't have needed to use it. Her use of it proved the utility. Her hypocrisy was there.

Not entirely

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See my post below:

If the government "steals" that money from you and you oppose that "theft" and you use the service in order to get "restitution" of the theft as the only means of making yourself whole, then you're not being hypocritical. When it comes to Rand, I have no idea how much she siphoned off for health insurance and Social Security compared to what she put in. If she took more back than she put in, then she's a hypocrite.

That's why the boat rescue thing is relevant here in this thread. Boat rescue is expensive yet the Coast Guard budget is small relative to total federal budget. So, the proportional "theft" is small and makes a boat rescue as an act of "restitution" quickly reach hypocrisy. The same is true for many many other governmental costs covered in my other post (roads, fire, etc.). All additional reasons that Ayn Rand is a hypocrite for using governmentally provided services other than Medicare and/or Social Security which are much more fund-like. For example, the copyright office doesn't exactly fit into the police/military/judiciary government model Ayn Rand espoused for limited government. People always talk about whether she believed in copyright and patent protection, but nobody ever talks about how those services would be provided if not for governmental clearinghouses that could prove provenance of ideas in case of disputes. Those aren't free.

You're wrong in multiple ways

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But the biggest one is that there are certain aspects to society that you would NEVER be able to afford on your own even if you never paid a dime in taxes.

You need a road that goes from your house to your grandmother's house in New Hampshire? Well, pony up and hire someone to layout, pave, etc. that 200 mile road then, bucko.

Sure, you have your $100 today, but are you putting aside enough every month to pay for all the water, manpower, equipment, etc. necessary to put your house fire out? Do they buy a fire engine just for you? Right when you need it? Or do they have to buy a fire engine on spec and hope that someone in your neighborhood occasionally burns down to get enough payment from you on a per-instance basis in order to be able to afford keeping the truck?

I mean the list could go on of services and needs you have which are served by a minute portion of the taxes collected per person but which end up returning a much larger value to society as a whole, both on a personal level AND civilizational level.

AND sometimes even the personal level for someone *else* benefitting from your taxes ALSO benefits you indirectly! If your tax dollars pay for a great public education, one of the students who benefits from that education, even if you are childless, might be the next employee that saves your company one day. If you pay for public transit, but never use it yourself because you have a driver to cart your self-made ass around, then one day someone using that public transportation might ALSO be at the same restaurant as you and save you from choking to death on your own smugness.

And finally, your understanding of debt when it comes to international trade and monetary policy is...simple. National debt is not a credit card bill.

It appears the only thing you got right is that, yes, people are human. Occasionally, there's going to be serious issues with politicians being corrupt or spending money inappropriately. And right now, due to the fact that they've made it easier and easier for themselves to be corrupt and corrupted, it's going to be a hard fight getting control of the system. But just because there's corruption and there's a lot of money at stake in all of these causes doesn't mean the solution is to prevent the flow of money. The money is needed for all of those valuable items you mentioned. The problem is that we need greater controls in place to prevent the corruption from getting out of hand and we need ways to prevent those controls from being undone by the very people we need to have put the controls in place. It's not an easy solution and it doesn't roll of the tongue like "lower taxes to stop the grift!", but strangling government to death means strangling civilization to death...and look where that's getting us.

Good thing

It's essentially impossible. The only other fraud who comes close to her reach is good old L Ron Hubbard.

No, he's paid a share of it

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That's the problem with Randian types and the claim that they "paid for it already" too.

1) The only way to not be a hypocrite on this topic for them is to claim that they were "plundered" by the government (if we dissociate their rights/responsibilities to forming that government, then we can say "the government" plundered from them).

2) If the government plundered their contributions in the form of unaccepted taxation, then they can oppose the taxation AND claim the benefits of the government having that money only if they see it as "restitution" for what was taken from them. In fact, they see it as an obligation to take that money because it restores them whole again.

3) However, if it's "restitution" then they can't take any more than what they put in. Otherwise, they'd be using the government to take from other citizens that they're arguing should be restored their value too.

SO, Lampert earned $4M last year. Actually he made a salary of $1 and took $4M in stock and I'm pretty sure he's going to be adept at tax evasion. BUT, let's give him the benefit of the doubt and say he paid straight up federal tax rates for that $4M, so about $1.5M in taxes. At the same time, the Coast Guard search and rescue budget was $900M of the total $4.1T federal budget or about 0.02%. So, his $1.5M in taxes put $330 in the search and rescue budget. Let's assume we're only going to charge him for the fuel to fly out and rescue him and that the helicopters are all paid for already and the staff are completely volunteer. Avgas is about $8/gallon and his $330 buys him 40 gallons of gas. The Jayhawk, Coast Guard's rescue helicopter of choice, takes 6460 lbs of fuel and can fly 6.5 hours on it. 40 gallons of avgas weighs 240 lbs which covers 3.7% of the full tank in the rescue chopper and allows it 14.5 minutes of flight. It has a top speed of 200 mph, but will need to get up to top speed and back to 0 mph to land again, so it will average 100 mph in hurrying to rescue him. So, in 15 minutes of flight, it's going to be able to fly a total of 25 miles. It has to get out and back, so he has to crash within 12.5 miles of the Coast Guard base (or no farther than Hull or Lynn) and that's just so they can hurry out to his location and wave at him as they whiz by at 200 mph and fly back.

I guess if we charged him for the man-hours and so on as well, he might be able to afford with his $330 that we send a rookie out to the end of the pier with a float ring if his yacht sinks while he's docked in the harbor.

Corporate Stupidity

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I'm quite sure than anyone who bothers to read Ayn Rand's work and not the Cliff Notes versions,will see that Lil' Eddie Lampert bears no resemblance to any of Rand's heroes.
Lampert typifies so much of what is wrong with modern American corporatism(greed,stupidity,sloth and a general lack of decency).
Oh,by the way,Sears's problems predate Lampert by at least a generation.
I WAS a customer since 1968 and have had friends and relatives employed at Sears.

I dunno ...

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He kind of reminds me of James Taggart in "Atlas Shrugged" - a recluse dilettante with no clue how to stave off the destruction of his failing company.

Oh, you said heroes. Yeah, you might be onto something, there. There's no evidence Lampert is a rapist.

Hello Privilege!!!

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Lampert was born in 1962 to Dolores Lampert and Floyd M. Lampert. His father was a senior partner in the law firm of Lampert & Lampert in New York City.

Him, Trump and Bush riding the coattails of their daddies.

why did we turn our harbor into a parking lot after cleaning it?

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This yacht blocks views of the harbor a lot more than the aquarium garage development, which would replace a ~4 story parking lot with a much taller building (but with additional sightlines).
Taxpayers paid billions to clean the harbor, only to have it walled off by yacht parking. The area in front of the ICA used to be a great view, especially from inside. Now, the water view is interrupted by yacht parking. All these yachts should be moored away from the downtown waterfront so we can all enjoy it again.

Dedham Sears

I'll always remember the Dedham Sears for the revolver I found ditched behind a changing room door.