About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »

Netbank is offering

Netbank is offering Priority Club points for new savings accounts. There’s no account fee. Just deposit $250 and leave it for a month. There are no fees. You’ll earn 10,000 Priority Club points. You are then free to cancel the account without penalty. Combine that with the 10,000 mile bonus for the free Priority Club Visa and you now have 20,000 points. That’s a couple of hotel nights or 5,000 frequent flyer miles in your choice of 19 different airline programs.

Continue Reading »

US planning to

US planning to recruit 1 in 24 Americans as citizen-spies. That’s a higher percentage of citizen informants than the former East Germany through the infamous Stasi secret police. (Thanks to Damon Chetson for the link.)

Continue Reading »

Some tentative thoughts on accounting

Some tentative thoughts on accounting scandals. Charles Oliver asks if current US accounting scandals mean that the US in 2002 is like Japan in 1989. I have some fears that he may be right. Japan soared for a long time on a mistaken belief about the health of its companies and economy. It turned out that the books were cooked. Japanese accounting rules allowed companies to take bonds and split them between principal and interest (coupons and zeroes) and value the two parts equally. Of course, they weren’t equally valuable. So companies would sell the more valuable piece for a paper profit, and keep the less valuable piece on their books at above market value. Companies were hiding losses and pretending to show profits in this way for decades. At the time, analysts in the…

Continue Reading »

I just noticed

I just noticed Timatollah. Okay, I noticed because he linked to me. Tim has some interesting observations, but I need to take issue with his July 4th point based on the Declaration of Independence that “legitimate government is one of the great creations of the human social animal.” We equally need to remember Madison’s point that (paraphrasing) If all men were angels, there would be no need for government. If government were to be run by angels, there would be no need for constraints. But it is precisely because men are to rule over other men, that we must first empower and then constrain. IMHO, we’ve gone rather far on the pendulum towards empowering. We need to pay a little more attention to constraints.

Continue Reading »

Last year, when the U.C.

Last year, when the U.C. Berkeley Speech team stayed with me during the AFA national finals, we visited the Smithsonian’s Air & Space Museum. Jake and Jenni tried to convince me that the moon landing was a fake. I didn’t believe them. Thanks to this link (thanks to Happy Fun Pundit), now I do.

Continue Reading »