Dollars & Sense: Verizon’s iPhone; 15 hot cars of the future
Verizon customers will be able to pre-order an iPhone starting February 3.
January 11th, 2011
05:34 PM ET

Dollars & Sense: Verizon’s iPhone; 15 hot cars of the future

A roundup of today’s CNNMoney news:

Verizon iPhone will go on sale Feb. 10: If you’re a Verizon lover who has been craving an iPhone, the wait is over. Starting February 3, Verizon customers will be able to pre-order their phones. For everyone else, the Verizon iPhone will launch Feb. 10. The cost: $199 for a 16 GB device and $299 for the 32 GB version, the same prices AT&T offers. One cool feature: A built-in ability to use it as a wireless hotspot and connect up to five additional devices. The downside: No 4G…yet.

Your smartphone could be your most valuable possession: A few years ago, if your phone was stolen, the worst that would happen was the thief could make prank calls or read your text messages. Today, that same person can destroy your social life and steal your bank account.

Maserati SUV with Ferrari engine: Built on the platform of Jeep Grand Cherokee at the Chrysler Group plant in Detroit, the new SUV is expected to make its debut in 2012. As the Detroit Auto Show comes to a close, check out the 15 hottest cars of the future.

Attack of the inflation hawks: The Fed started a $600 billion bond-buying program in November and not everyone is on board with it. Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher wasn’t a voting member at the time, but he and two other outspoken critics have rotated into voting position.

Do or die for Illinois tax hike: The state is facing a $13 billion shortfall that must be resolved by June 30. Plus, Illinois has $6 billion in unpaid bills to social service agencies, health care providers, contractors and others. State lawmakers are scrambling to pass massive personal and corporate income tax hikes before the Democratic majority lose some seats to Republicans on Wednesday.

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Filed under: Dollars & Sense • Politics • Taxes • Technology
soundoff (24 Responses)

    Illinois , wow look at the democrats raising taxes before the republicans take over. oops we spent all the money,, beter raise taxes again on the rich people..

    January 11, 2011 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • sondagsakare

      Income taxes in Illinois have not risen in 22 years.

      January 12, 2011 at 1:02 am | Report abuse |
    • ray

      illinios is at least doing something about their financial situation. and a tax "hike" from 3 to 5% is not a "hike". it is a minor increase. paying 1500 dollars a year instead of 900 is not an issue to me. ignorant people like this USMC person are a bigger issue.

      January 12, 2011 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
  2. PartisanSheep

    @Ruffnutt: Illinois' situation is what happens when social programs are designed to give men fish, instead of teaching them how to fish for themselves. Except for the handicapped and elderly everyone getting welfare should be mandated to seek work or enroll in school. School for poor people is already free. There is free day care available for single mothers as well. I would also require single mothers to seek child support from the dead beat daddy. Those that can't speak English should also be forced to learn, so they can't hide behind the language barrier excuse. The Dems have used the poor as pawns while the Republicans have sought to create more low paid drones who have to work 2 jobs in order to make the same money as their previous outsourced job. Neither choice is acceptable to me.

    January 11, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • AHA

      Thoughfully said. Seems like whoever is in power, the poor and now the middle class are increasingly screwed. They have less of a chance more than ever, especially when education is more expensive and doing well means that you must have the support of parents to succeed. If you don't you have a long road ahead.

      January 11, 2011 at 11:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • hanznfranz

      I'm gonna give you an amen on that one.

      January 12, 2011 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
    • NuffRutt

      bravo. well said.

      January 12, 2011 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
    • rich

      spoken like the gospel, my friend.

      this country needs to learn how to cut back in reasonable ways. for instance, why do we need every freeway lit up with street lights? imagine the huge environmental and actual costs for that, which our tax dollars support.

      someone needs to go thru the budget, line by line, with some common sense and urgent practicality. Get rid of ALL of the fat before sticking it to tax payers.

      January 12, 2011 at 10:00 am | Report abuse |
  3. frank

    how about a sales tax on internet sales?

    January 11, 2011 at 11:15 pm | Report abuse |

      How would you enforce such a tax, especially if I live in a different state?

      January 12, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  4. Peter

    Police, firefighters, transit and other gov't pensions have bankrupt the state of Illinois. Why should they get pensions when nobosy else is anymore. They need to eliminate pensions and introduce the union boys to 401k(s) like corporate America did 15 -20 years ago. This is not fair. Many other states including New York, New Jersey, Mass. Penn. Ohio and California will inevitably be bankrupt one day just like Illiinois, unless they reduce their ridulous pension obligations. Unions have ruined America.

    January 11, 2011 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • W.H.

      Gotta say Peter, your ignorance about these issues is staggering. Without even going into all the ways you are wrong on every level, let me first point out that Texas has a big a structural deficit as California while having very few public sector unions or pensions. And it's certainly not because they tax too much and drive away business! In fact they have the worst of everything because their taxes are so low. Aside from the genuinely poor state of Mississippi, Texas has the worst public schools, the worst criminal justice system, and the worst social safety net. They also take more federal money in than they pay out, which makes the entire state a bunch of freeloaders. So much for the conservative utopia, eh?

      As for the rest, you clearly know nothing about the history of this country's labor movement. 120 years ago the governor could have 'uppity' workers shot for protesting their 7 16 hour days of work each week for wages that wouldn't even allow them to feed themselves, let alone a family. The middle class in this country is built on unions and pensions. Take both away and a guarantee you a 75% poverty rate in 50 years. Why? Because that's what it is in every country where that philosophy holds sway.

      Of course, there's over reach by unions and a hefty amount of corruption. It would be better if it wasn't there. However, ultimately they've done far more good than bad, and if you can't see it, that's because the blood of activists was spilled to allow you the luxury of being a fool.

      Finally, the pensions. There's a simple reason why public sector workers have them while private sector workers don't. Public sector workers are harder to steal from. Most corporate pensions were in outside funds that were supposed to be isolated from other company finances. However, corporate criminals discovered about 30 years ago that 'supposed to be separate' and 'illegal' are two different terms. Now the modis operandi of corporate 'responsibility' is to loot the fund and then cry poverty or to use it to pay off creditors in an all-to-easy bankruptcy filing. Each excuse is used to eliminate retirement security (often from the already retired!) and to shove the burden on the federal government, all in the service of few more houses in the Hamptons for the 'deserving' board members and stockholders. And why not? The government hasn't done a darn thing to stop them.

      In the end, so what if the public sector is the last bastion of the world our parents lived in? Why do we need to tear that down? We should be trying to get back to it.

      January 12, 2011 at 12:09 am | Report abuse |
    • The_Mick

      Peter – Illinois pension recipients get that as a replacement for Social Security, which Illinois doesn't pay into and the employees do not receive on retirement. So when you say nobody else gets pensions anymore, you're forgetting almost all of us get Social Security. How would you like to see someone call for no more Social Security despite the fact you paid into it? Are you going to blame the unions for promoting the idea of social security (which they did!). Also I get a small teachers pension that my employer and I paid in 14.35% of my salary, 2% more than the 12.4% that goes to FICA for SS, which is smaller than my high-school grad cousins' pensions from Otis Elevator and General Electric. Additionally, public workers don't get matching stock plans which may private workers get. My sister worked for Abbott Labs for 6 years and matching employer retirement contributions for 15% of salary are now worth well into six figures and she's got a decade before she retires. And she needs that money for a comfortable retirement because her employer for the rest of her life has been a hospital with a so-so retirement plan.

      January 12, 2011 at 6:25 am | Report abuse |
    • USMC

      Peter, well said. Unions blow and no amount of rationalizing by people like W.H. can change that fact. I would imagine that W.H. is a union guy, but even if he isn't he has bought into the whole "unions saved the working man" song and dance. It is true that unions had their place due to horrible working conditions 120 years ago. But things change and we need to change with them. Slavery was once an accepted practice by some in this country, but I don't think too many intelligent people would agree we should go back to that. Why should we believe any different about working conditions? It's a lame excuse.

      January 12, 2011 at 7:33 am | Report abuse |
    • This is not 1900

      I completely agree that unions are how we got to the fair wage society that we have today, but I completely disagree that if went away you would see 75% poverty level. Unions were formed in a day when this country was an industrial nation and most of the labor force was uneducated and unaware of fair wages were. Someone working in California at that time did not know what someone working in New York was making. You can't apply what happened 120 years ago to today it just doesn't work there is a lot you are not taking into consideration. The middle class today for the most part is educated, we know what a fair wage/benefits are for the job we are being asked to do. Also this is the Information age, with the Internet and all the information it provides us on jobs, wages, benefits, financial information, upper management can't just say we are going to pay you pennies on the dollar and you will deal with it. If that happened where I worked I gurauntee I don't need a union for everyone to call B.S. and start looking for other jobs. Companies want to make money and they can't do that if all the good hard working people walk out the door, there will be another company waiting to pay them. Look at Tech sector, Google, Apple, Microsoft, all these places know they need the best workers so they pay them good salaries and offer big benefits to keep them around to work the 60-70 hour weeks. There is no Union within that industry and the workers within it have done just fine. This just points back to my original point the work being done by the "middle class" is not the same as it was 100 years ago, it is mostly made up of manual labor jobs, a lot of the jobs now require some sort of college education and are business/service job so the people are not the same either.
      Now for the Unions today I am they all contain some hardworking people, but I know people who both work for Unions and work with Unions and the stories I hear show a bunch of lazy, overpaid people who have very much swung the pendulum in the other direction. I am sorry but an auto worker that put a rubber hose on a radiator and works 40 hours a week should not get $60,000 a year with full paid benefits and a pension. Basically at that point he is making more than the IT programmer who work 45 – 50 hours a week who is being paid $80,000 a year investing in his 401k and paying out the behind for his health benefits. This is why the auto industry in this country is such a mess because they have to bear the weight of the overpaid, fat, lazy union. Every day I drive by a store that apparently did not use Union labor to some work, and there has been people standing on the corner with signs saying not to go to the store..... FOR THE LAST 2 MONTHS...... maybe they should oh I don't know ....... GET A JOB.
      We need to stop looking at this countries past for guidance for the future, we need to figure out what really needs to be fixed and get to work on fixing it, and guess what people it is going to cost money. If you want to have this country around in 2100 I suggest you tighten your belts, and get to work, because we are going to get something for nothing here.

      January 12, 2011 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      Peter...You are pretty much right on. BTW, as a California Teacher I can attest to the fact that our state is already bankrupt, and I hear that NY is close behind. The corrupt teacher's union already has immense power in the state and blocks all efforts at reform...even when it is needed to save failing students and schools. They are even standing in the way of Obama's educational reforms and balking at the ideas that teacher's should actually get paid in relation to their work effort! Imagine that! Also, every California teacher is required to join the union and this year $500 was removed from our paychecks purely for the purpose of funding their political action. That political action mostly involves covering their fat A**es so nobody takes away their big piece of the pie. It is shameful.

      January 12, 2011 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. A.D.


    January 11, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
  6. PartisanSheep

    @Peter: I agree that common sense should prevail in every budget, however the article sited "social" programs as the main reason for the budget shortfall. My parents lost close to $80k from their 401k when the market crashed. They listened to government when they were advised to enroll in a private retirement plan. Firefighters and cops provide a valuable service. If they gave up their pensions and enrolled in a 401k then they too would be out of luck and most likely end up on welfare. I believe only 15% of jobs in America are union, so to say they are the reason for all the financial chaos doesn't match the facts. Over 8million jobs have been outsourced not because of unions demanding so much, but to inflate stock prices and profit by escaping minimum wage, environmental regulations, manufacturing tax, corporate tax and so on. The U.S. Has a 35% manufacturing tax when compared with 6% in Canada. Even "socialist" Canada has a better atmosphere for jobs than we do. I think Unions often protect lazy workers, but they are not the biggest hindrance to job growth. Even if we lowered taxes on companies they would not bring the jobs back. You would need to raise taxes and tariffs on companies that acted against the interest's of the American people. Government would never allow it, because they all own stock in the same companies that outsource.

    January 12, 2011 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  7. Patrick A

    EVERYBODY knows that unions have too much power,they are not part of the Solutions.

    January 12, 2011 at 5:23 am | Report abuse |
  8. Dean

    I have never understood the logic of "we have not raised taxes in 22 years". As the states population grows there should be an increase in revenue in a proportionate amount. You should not have the raise taxes on some kind of schedule to keep up services because inflation and population increase will naturally cause tax revenue to rise. The question should be what is the state doing NOW that causes it to be over budget that it WAS NOT doing when it was in budget. It is almost always a spending problem. Every personal finance councelor will tell you that if you are over budget you have a spending problem, not an earning problem.

    January 12, 2011 at 10:01 am | Report abuse |
  9. RES

    State Tax – 5%, Federal Tax – 20%, Sales Tax – 7.5%, Property Tax – 5%, Communications Tax, Utility Tax, Health Insurance Tax,Tax,Tax,Tax,Tax, and more Taxes! It is getting ridiculous people come on! We have let groups of people, and I don't care who they are OVER-REGULATE everything to the point of no RETURN! It has to STOP somewhere! And if it keeps going where will it STOP! Over 40 percent of the Money we earn or more goes to Taxes, add it up! I don't care how much money you give, our POLITICIANS will spend it and be looking for more! I just got done watching them tear our Street Corner up 3 times that was perfectly fine and wheel chair passable! But it wasn't to the Exact CODE to the 1/4 inch! They are doing that all over the city! Waste,Waste, Waste, that is their business! They are in-capable of having money left over! Lawyers will find a way for each specific group to take what is always left and need more!

    January 12, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |

    This isnt 15 hot new cars! I was all "yeah cool new cars" then boom iphone stuff. Fix the link!

    January 12, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  11. Rob

    Welcome to todays world. If I really look at what I am taxed here is what I find: 35% Federal Tax (28% effective) and 9.8% CA State Tax, and 1% Property Tax. The you have the taxes on the taxed dollars: 10.25% sales tax, additional taxes on phone, gas, etc,. This means that if I break even each month (how many of is actually can put a significant amount of money in savings), my overall tax rate is closer to 50%. This is getting crazy. If states were run more like busnesses and the shareholders (citizens) expected profits things might be different. Companies cant give free money while they are struggling, why does our government? Take a look at will only improve when people the government stops the unemployment checks and forces people to go back to work.

    January 12, 2011 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
  12. Rodolfo

    Hey Illinois is not the only state where people fell like all they do is pay taxes, California's are all fed up with all the taxes the state, local cities, and the nickel and dime you to death every state and city agency tax you here in California People here in California are leaving again for neighboring states, like Arizona, Nevada and Texas to get away from the tax crazy Democrats in power in California's and all the free social programs.

    January 16, 2011 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |