Weekend Reads: Trump's wall, time zones, and garbage men

Colin Lalley 1600


Colin Lalley

Colin Lalley

Insurance Expert

Colin Lalley is the Associate Director of SEO Content at Policygenius in New York City. His writing on insurance and personal finance has appeared on Betterment, Inc, Credit Sesame, and the Council for Disability Awareness.

Published March 2, 2016|4 min read

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In this week's Weekend Reads, will Donald Trump's wall be tall enough to keep out White Walkers?Plus, Budgets Are Sexy takes on retirement predictions, Google builds the perfect team like it's an autonomous car, garbage workers probably get paid more than you, the wild plan to destroy time zones, and Americans say they want to escape to Canada but probably won't.

Budgets Are SexyFinally – The Magic Number You Need to Retire!!

Over at Budgets Are Sexy, J. Money isn’t afraid to get personal when it comes to money. That’s why we love him. He recently posted about two interactions he had with people spouting the exact amount of money needed to retire...without knowing anything about the individual person. As he points out, this is silly. In fact, it’s pointless at best and dangerous at worst because you could be setting a goal that isn’t right for you and you’ll find yourself wanting in your golden years. Your retirement fund depends on a lot of things, not the least of which is your expenses, so if you’re pulling numbers out of midair, you’re definitely doing something wrong. You might as well just be throwing darts at numbers on a wall and picking your retirement goal that way. (Note: throwing darts at a wall is a mostly-not-recommended retirement strategy.)

The Washington PostDonald Trump’s Mexico border wall will be as high as 55 feet, according to Donald Trump

This presidential race is off to an exciting, unpredictable start. One thing that’s for certain is that if Donald Trump wins, he’s building that wall on the border with Mexico that Mexico is totally not paying for. But putting politics aside for a moment, I think we can all agree on one pressing matter: just how high is this wall going to be? Like, obviously it won’t be the size of just a regular wall, but are we talking about The Wall from Game of Thrones? According to the Game of Thrones Wiki, that wall is 700 feet tall. That seems plenty high enough to do...whatever the Trump Wall is supposed to do. The Washington Post explores the wild variations in the Trump Wall’s supposed height, which keeps getting taller the more Mexico refuses to pay for it. He might need to rethink making it out of ice, though.

The New York TimesWhat Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team

Google. You know them as the company that runs the Internet. That’s no small feat, so they’re a huge company. Naturally, having a company of 50,000+ employees means that not everyone will get along. That’s why Google launched "Project Aristotle" in an attempt to find out what makes the perfect team. As Google is wont to do, they dove into data and testing to figure out why certain people click while others can’t seem to. Not all of us are working for companies making robot cars or wi-fi balloons or renaming ourselves Alphabet, but it doesn’t hurt to follow Google’s lead on making sure we have the best teams possible. After all, that’s the first step in having a market value of half a trillion dollars, right?

CNN MoneyThe $100,000 job: Garbage workers

"One man’s trash is another man’s treasure" is a thing that some people say, and apparently collecting other people’s trash is a good way to get yourself some treasure, too. Being a garbage truck driver is good work if you can get it – partly because a lot of people don’t want to get it. There’s a stigma associated with being a trashman. But if you can make six figures without a high school diploma, does it really matter what other people think? And not to discount the benefits of higher education, but with the extreme cost of a college education these days, most people probably wouldn’t blame you for going down this particular career path.

The Washington PostThe radical plan to destroy time zones

There’s been a heated debate raging in the PolicyGenius offices recently. In one corner, our resident Millennial thinkfluencer is imagining a world without time zones; in the other corner, the star of our dog food taste test wants to maintain the status quo of Pacific vs Eastern Standard Time (sorry Mountain and Central). So who’s right? We’re pretty divided, but the no-time-zones crowd has some prominent academics (and North Korea) on their side. Not only are some people proposing a single global universal time zone, but they’re also talking about a new calendar in which every new year starts on a Monday and some years have an extra week which for some reason they call an Xtr. So what do you think? Do we stick with the way things are, or do we abolish time zones in the first steps toward a global utopia? We need someone to turn the tide of this argument for us one way or the other.

VoxAfter Super Tuesday, Americans are frantically Googling "move to Canada"

We just passed Super Tuesday, when the picture of who will be our 2016 presidential candidates becomes a little bit clearer, and with that comes people wanting to flee the country before it becomes a socialist breeding ground or a gilded authoritarian dystopia. And we apparently broke the Canadian immigration website with all of our research into becoming citizens of our northern neighbor. Google searches for "move to Canada" spike during every election, but we’ve hit a 10 year high. And if you need to leave the country, we have a handy guide for taking your baby with you. Canada should probably look into building a wall. I’ve heard it’s good at keeping out immigrants from the south.