Drink Up News From Across The World

Twitter Censors on Campus

Cited: MSNBC

Students around the country will tell you that if you want to find out the skinny on the new English teacher, or the soup of the day in the cafeteria, or about the new law professors horrific toupee, just log on and chances are all of your questions will be answered. In fact, while you are there you may very well want to make a comment about it yourself. The preponderance of opinions on just about anything on Twitter, Facebook and other less popular social media networks is getting a little out of hand, that is if you ask officials at Western Kentucky State University that is. And these officials are doing something about it; fighting back if you will and in doing so charges of censorship and limiting the exchange of free speech are being leveled at the highest authorities at this Kentucky state university.

The President of WKU, Gary Ransdell, has used Facebook and Twitter to lecture students on the things that they post on these mediums, especially when it comes to not so flattering posts about the college. Kids interviewed on campus say that they are now being very cautious about what they write because they are afraid of  running afoul of school administrators. In fact, WKU officials actually got Twitter to close one very sarcastic threat about WKU, a move that has many observers scratching their heads over why the school would ever want to get that deep into a social media battle over free speech, no matter the subject. WKU is actually considering a new handbook for students, which will inform them on what school officials consider appropriate behavior on these media outlets. A parody run in the school newspaper says that “Campus police changing their name to WKU Twitter Police.”

For their part school officials say that they are simply trying to weed out abuses of the system and those that are posting false allegations using phony accounts and names. And they also remind students that what they post will follow them for the rest of their lives and that prospective employers will also know if they have engaged in unsubstantiated bashing on social media outlets, which will effect their prospects for getting a job.


My take:

Sounds like WKU had better think about making sure that their students like the place rather than trying to limit what is said about it by its students. The President telling the kids to watch what they say because it will follow them for the rest of their lives sounds like the old line of BS that my father used to tell me about my “permanent record” that will dog me forever also. I think the Admin at WKU should think about ways to grow a thicker skin.


Other Resources

Swift Recovery Options

Operating at peak efficiency in regular business dealings often requires that a business has a proper backup plan so that potential downtime is reduced or even eliminated by a concisely designed Dallas data recovery package. For many companies who deal in digital information as one of the primary elements of their business operations, having a data crisis can be significantly punitive to a company that otherwise doesn’t have a product to show without having access to its digital operations. Setting up a recovery route before the need for such a plan arises is the best way to operate these days.

Latency and Network Strength

There are a number of factors which will impact how a company is able to address their need for speed, storage and access of files and when speaking with colocation providers, one facet of the equation which might not sit on the shoulders of the colocation providers themselves is the speed of the home network for the company who is seeking colocation access. While the number of people who are otherwise looking to find success within their overall network access, it’s important for such companies to work with their exterior service providers to make sure they have appropriate bandwidth.


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Banks In Better Shape

Cited: CNN

The number of banks that were at risk of closing their teller windows for good dropped in the fourth quarter of 2010, which marked the third such decline for the banking sector, and good news for a part of the financial fabric of the U.S. economy that was in jeopardy of collapse just a short time ago. It’s not that anyone ever really doubted that the big boys on the block would be okay; the CitiBank, BofA’s, and J.P Morgan Chase banks among the fatter cats in the alley were never really in that much danger because the suits and ties that run those businesses knew full well that they could put the squeeze on the Uncle Sam to bail them out of the jam. However, the smaller fish in that pond were not so certain of their fate and until recently, it seemed like their fate hung in the balance.

Reflective of the better conditions in the banking sector is a recent report by the Federal Deposit Insurance Company (FDIC) which said that outstanding loan balances to these banks increased by 1;8% in Q4 2011, the largest increase in four years and while still modest, it is a good sign and one that signals that things are moving in the right direction. Another source of optimism is another bit of data from the FDIC which notes that the number of banks still in financial trouble dropped by 31 to 813 in Q4 2011. The list is made up of the banks that the FDIC believes are in the greatest danger of failing. During the fiscal year 2011 92 banks failed with only 12 closing their doors in the last quarter of 2012.

On the other side of the coin, that being the healthier banks, the FDIC noted that the banking sector of the U.S. generated its largest annual profits since 2006 in 2011 at $119.5 billion, which topped the earnings and profits of 2010 by $34 million.  Share prices for the largest banks in the U.S. have followed their profits with stock prices in the financial sector leading the overall attack on the 13,000 level for the Dow Jones Industrial Average.


My take:

It is important that the smaller banks also get back on their feet because they are the life blood of the smaller communities in the U.S. and the businesses that operate in those neighborhoods. It is never a good thing to have your only choice among bankers to be JPM or Citibank because those financial giants have a history of not really giving a damn for the little guy. In fact, Citibank is spending most of its investment capital in overseas operations so we need the local community banks to maintain the financial health of our communities.


Other Resources

Essential Garage Elements

In creating a proper garage space it can often take a while to determine the right level of extras to include with such a space and even if someone isn’t a car nut or would otherwise need a specialized garage floor and some shelving that was crafted specifically to hold mechanic’s tools, having various areas within the garage that allow for neater storage is usually a good idea. A messy garage not only tends to get worse over time but it also ends up becoming quite the eye sore after a while when cleaning it becomes a gargantuan task.

Digital Recording Options

Over the past several years there has been a nice amount of research regarding the best methods for enhancing the amount of reporting that a Los Angeles court reporter is able to offer the court and one of the great things about today’s modern, digital technology is that it further enhances the ability of courtroom reporters to offer assistance during the courtroom proceeding with the reading back of testimony or other items that have just been talked about in the courtroom. This type of immediate real-time reporting is so valuable that many judges now insist that court reporters come equipped with such capabilities.

Occasional Deep Cleaning

Most office buildings will have a regular schedule when a office cleaning Ft Lauderdale crew would come by and make a regular cleaning but one thing to remember regarding such cleanings is that it’s important to make sure they are handled in such a way that a more intense cleaning is done at least every quarter or at the very least, twice a year. The regular cleaning schedule won’t always include things like window washing or a deep cleaning of the carpets and sometimes after a lot of traffic has been through an office, the carpet needs more than just a vacuuming.


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Gas Prices Hurt Small Biz

Cited: CNN

The many businesses that use fuel as a part of their core business are bracing for even higher prices at the pump to come. And frankly, what business doesn’t rely on gas. Even if you don’t use it directly chances are that the products that you buy will be more expensive because of fuel surcharges added on by your vendors. There is no way around the fact that most small businesses in America are going to feel the crunch of higher gas prices and nowhere is that more evident than among those that deliver their goods to your home or those that use some type of vehicle to sell their products, like food trucks.

The online grocers, bakers, and the huge number of fast-food trucks that have sprung up all over the urban landscape of the U.S. are in for some very tough times given the outlook for gas prices and for many of them their only recourse is to raise their prices and to get even more diligent about watching their overhead in other areas of the business that perhaps in the past were ignored, such as labor costs and other incidental expenses. Among those other businesses that are also considering dramatic actions to offset the rising price of gasoline are those businesses that drive their products to market. Across the country many U.S. cities are dotted with farmer’s markets where farmers from across the surrounding countryside come to sell their produce, meats, and specialty food products. Among many of the farmers are also artisan bakers and chefs who also frequent these markets to sell their goods and now with the price of a gallon of gas approaching or topping $4/gallon in most U.S. cities, many of these vendors are considering cutting their staff or not participating in these markets all together.

Other vendors that deliver their products to their customers, such as online grocery operations, and other such businesses are once again considering cutting out some of their customer base; never a great option when building your customer list is usually seen as tantamount to your success. However, some of these businesses cite other times in the past when market conditions left them no other choice but to pull in the wagons and reduce the area being covered by the business.  One of the better known gourmet food trucks operating in the NYC area says that he will have to completely change the way he does business. Now, this vendor, who asked not to be identified, said that while he usually drives his truck and parks it all over the five boroughs of NYC at designated times during the month so as to create something of a scarcity effect for his gourmet food, he may not be able to continue to do so because of the high cost of driving the gas-guzzling kitchen on wheels around the city. This could change the entire business model that has worked so successfully for him in the past as customers lined up waiting for his truck knowing that it would not be back around again for another month. Now, I guess he’ll have to choose the most profitable location on his route and hope for the best.


My take:

Just when things appear to be getting better the price of gas throws a monkey wrench into the works and here we are all over again. I don’t think things are going to get any better any time soon when it comes to the price of gas so it remains to be seen just how much of  an impact the higher prices are going to have on the economy.


Other Resources

Some Consider Electric Fleets

There has been a fairly significant effort in recent years to enhance the ability of companies to utilize green technologies and from vehicles that are hybrid or electric to fashioning Iowa commercial truck tires that are rated to last thousands of more miles to varying types of green installations within the vehicles that are fashioned from recycled components, one of the best options these days for companies is to obtain a combination of green techniques and classic standards so as to save money yet also engage in various business practices that are good for the environment.

Different Roast Options

When planning a meal that will include pork a cook has an amazing number of options before them to do so and there are an amazing number of ways that a chef can use a China box and the resulting juicy cuts of pork to make a fantastic meal. For anyone who has served pork before, it’s not uncommon to try different herbs each time the cuts are sent out and this means anyone who has a bit of ingenuity within them can create some fantastic meals. The one commonality of most pork options is rosemary.

Paying for Energy

There are already many stores out there that work hard with their lighting schemes to make sure that they aren’t using unnecessary energy to light the space but this is often a difficult issue when there is jewelry lighting involved because sometimes it’s not a good idea to reduce lighting in a store where there are very valuable items on display. Not only does the store need to be lit well during business hours, but it is also a type of business which must have its lights turned on during off hours. A good option for low power usage lighting is a series of LED lights.


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Home Prices Fall in Some Cities

Cited: MSNBC

Home prices seem to have stabilized in most parts of the U.S. In fact, most data coming out of the housing market points to improving conditions overall and while not all the news is rosy or that the market is staging a dramatic turnaround, for the most part the consensus opinion is that the worst may very well indeed be behind us. Then again that might depend on where you live. The most recent S&P Case-Shiller home price index shows that home prices fell in nineteen of the largest cities around the U.S. in December versus December 2010. Detroit was the only exception, where housing prices held their ground, though given the depths to which they had fallen one has to wonder if they had any additional room on the downside. In fact, since 2000, prices for homes in Detroit fell more than in any other city in America so there is little room in the data for the homeowners of the Motor City to start celebrating.

Over the past year housing prices have fallen most sharply in Atlanta at -12.8%, Las Vegas -8.8%, Chicago -6.5%, Seattle -5.6%, San Francisco -5.4% and San Diego -5.4%. The index also measures larger urban areas or economic zones that encompass more than one metro area and the results there are not much more encouraging for the price of houses either. Detroit, Atlanta, Cleveland, Las Vegas top the list of metro areas where real estate prices have tumbled the most and are still falling despite the supposed turnaround in the market.

One bright spot in the report were several metro areas where home prices are actually on the rise. These are New York, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles. The report seems to indicate, at least to the market analysts reviewing the report, that while the market for homes might have stabilized to some degree, the bottom has not been hit in many area and that while prices might not continue to fall at the rapid rate that was seen between 2008 and 2010, they have yet to bounce in most areas of the country.


My take:

With so many homes on the market as a result of foreclosures it will be a while before home prices can really make any headway. These foreclosures will be a drag on the housing market for quite some time and in fact the Obama administration had better come up with some kind of a plan to pull these things off the market, similar to the TARP program that funneled so much government assistance to the fat cats on Wall St.


Other Resources

New Organic Options

There are many companies coming out with natural and organic versions of their popular products, but the thing to remember about such companies is that they often try to sell natural skin care options that aren’t technically an organic or fully natural type of product. Often they’ll suggest that they’re selling something that would be considered organic but which is actually filled with chemicals that were natural and aren’t actually chemical free. Sometimes companies will get away with calling a product natural simply because the chemicals themselves were found in nature even if those chemicals are harsh on the skin.

Proper Trimming Time

Sometimes a tree might end up getting too leggy or big at a point in the year when it would actually be a bad idea to trim the plant and this is why before trimming a tree, a property owner should usually consult with a Hartland MI tree trimming service to make sure that trimming is being done in the right season. Unless a tree is actually dead and simply needs to be removed, there are some times of the year when it’s not a good idea to cut trees. A good rule of thumb is to always trim trees a few weeks after they’ve finished blooming.

Infrequent Cleaning Options

There are a lot of regular items that a person must take care of each week whenever they clean something and often a home owner or the Fairfax VA 22030 house cleaning service that takes care of the home will need to make sure that additional tasks are done on a less frequent basis. Some of those tasks may include the cleaning of screens on the exterior of the home after the rainy season is over or the care and polishing of various non-plastic substances in the home such as the many pieces of wood furniture that a person might own.


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Greed Is Bad Says FBI


“Greed is good,” or so we were all told by the infamous character Gordon Gekko in the film Wall Street, which at the time highlighted the high-flying lifestyle and work habits of this baron of billions plying his trade on the streets of New York’s financial district. Now, in a new effort to raise the public awareness of the problem of white collar crime and to dissuade those that might be considering it, the FBI has produced a 30 second video starring Michael Douglas, in which he references that character he played in the film back in 1987 but this time with a new message for the audience.

In the movie Gekko stood in front of a large crowd of shareholders in a paper company and addressed them with his philosophy on why he would be the right person to take over the company. The slick dressed, slickly coiffed, and slick tongued Gekko told everyone, “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good,” and that became his defining moment; the quote that most people remember him for in that film. With that in mind, the FBI decided to use that well-entrenched line for its own purposes, the let the public know that white collar crime is on the rise and that it is not good.

Douglas appears on the FBI public service announcement and in referencing his line from Wall Street says, “The movie is fiction, but the problem is real.” He then goes on to ask people viewing the film to contact their local law enforcement officials if they suspect that someone is conducting financial crimes. FBI records show that just last year alone the federal agency investigated thousands of reports of financial crimes leading to 242 indictments and 241 convictions of corporate criminals. In doing so, the feds recovered or secured upwards of $2.4 billion in restitution from these corporate criminals while adding that they have increased convictions of securities and commodities fraud, health care fraud, mortgage fraud, insurance fraud, and money laundering operations.

As a large part of their efforts to keep corporate criminals in check the FBI has recently hired 250 new forensic accounting professionals to bolster the department that looks into what is commonly known as “white collar” crimes. Attorney General Eric Holder recently made a trip to New York City to deliver a strong reminder to everyone involved in the financial gears of the U.S. economy that the government is serious about white collar crime and that his department would continue to focus on this area to ensure that citizens are not preyed upon by those that would take advantage of their positions. He went on to cite the over 1400 people that were charged in 500 different cases of health care fraud in the U.S. in 2011.


My take:

Sounds like a good idea by the FBI. Everyone can identify with the Gordon Gekko character; some acting like him and others loathing him and what he stood for. I doubt that any of the perpetrators of these crimes will be moved to change their ways by the commercial but perhaps alerting others to be on the lookout for white collar criminals and to report those that they find may very well be a deterrent.


Other Resources

Understanding Lawyers and General Meetings

One of the issues that might come as a surprise to an individual is the idea that after they hire a lawyer, they are going to be responsible for meeting with that individual on a regular basis to understand how the case might be going and to discuss various strategies that need to be implemented. Most of the time Colorado insurance defense lawyers are going to need to meet with a defendant on what should likely be a monthly basis. This rate of meeting should ensure that anything that needs to be communicated will be shared on a timely basis.

Timeframe for Obtaining a Lawyer

One of the questions someone might have if they are injured and believe that they should take the opposing party who might have been responsible for their injuries to court is whether it’s appropriate to talk to Denver CO personal injury lawyers as soon as a few weeks after an incident has occurred. Realistically it is always a good idea to do so and speaking with a legal representative early is always a good way to ensure that the ball gets rolling quick and that people’s memories don’t fade over time. The earlier someone speaks with a lawyer, the better.

Conversing with Attorneys

There are some professionals out there who make their living by arguing and one such professional is a lawyer and for some types of lawyers, their entire day is filled with the crafting and delivery of arguments. But speaking with a Greenwood Village Colorado personal injury attorney as a potential client shouldn’t make someone feel like they’re going to be in for a fight. If anything, speaking with an attorney should be a fairly professional and calm process where the basic details and issues are laid out for the lawyer’s consideration so as to figure out whether a potential case has merit.

Fighting with the Police

Sometimes someone makes a mistake and they decide to get into a vehicle when they have been drinking and may be illegally intoxicated and it’s important that a person who has been charged with such an activity does not try to fight with the police by himself when in court and allows a Ottawa DUI lawyer to do the talking for him. Fighting and yelling in a court room is a big no-no, as is trying to fight with the police. Calm and rational behavior is much better for regular interactions between a person and law enforcement.

Judge Involvement in Divorce

One of the aspects of divorce that some people might not be aware of will often include the idea that a judge will often be involved in the final signing of Florida divorce documents and that although agreements and other issues can be settled before the divorce gets to the courtroom, the certification process must go by a person in the legal profession so as to gain certified status. Most of the time, it’s not simply a certification that is required, but is an involvement by a judge, however brief to sign the document and make it valid in the eyes of the court.

Finding Solid Employment

In such a difficult economy it can be frustrating to find work and when someone has been out of work for a long time and finally gets a job, it can be difficult to figure out how best to confront what might be a problem regarding a job that a person spent so long to obtain. Most Long Island employment lawyers will advise that a person should not put up with things at work that they feel would warrant investigation from various court entities. Even if a job took months to find, there’s no reason a person has to suffer in it.

Before a Divorce Begins

Divorce is a very serious and a very final end to a marriage and the decision to actually file papers with the court is not an easy one to make, even when a person has been in a type of abusive relationship. Consulting with a New Jersey divorce lawyer is never a bad thing when the topic of divorce starts to weigh on someone’s mind and there is absolutely nothing within the law books which suggests a person who inquires about a divorce with a legal representative actually has to go about entering into such a legal proceeding.


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Rosemary Boosts Brain Power

Cited: MSNBC

Rosemary has long been a favorite of chefs, bakers, and those dabbling in aroma therapy; the herb not the Hollywood Squares fossil. It has been used as a hair rinse, cat repellent, in savory dishes, baked goods, and as an oil to be rubbed on the body. New research is underway to see if perhaps rosemary helps to stimulate brain function and if so, do traces of the aromatic herb remain in the bloodstream just by smelling it? The study, which is still underway, will be published in the Therapeutic Advances in Psycho pharmacology when it concludes.

The researchers conducting the study say that they can already show that cognitive function improves after being exposed to the aroma of rosemary. However, what they want to see is if the bloodstream contains higher levels of the active ingredient found in rosemary, 1,8-cineole, after being exposed to it and for how long will someone benefit from being exposed to it. The researchers used 20 subjects, all of whom were exposed to rosemary. Not surprisingly they found that in all the subjects their cognitive performance was enhanced after having a whiff, so to speak, but the really amazing thing was that the subjects actually absorbed this compound into their bloodstream through their noses. The discovery led researchers to believe that the connection between higher function and rosemary has more to do with a biochemical reaction than had ever been demonstrated previously.

Their conclusion is that rather than being simply an aroma therapy from inhaling rosemary, the effects are more like that of a drug. The researchers point out that too many people in both the scientific community and among the lay population forget just how important plants are to our very existence and that in fact, so many of the remedies, cures, and drugs that are on the shelves of every medicine cabinet in America can trace their roots to plants and the science behind extracting the secrets in plants and how the compounds within every part of them interact with our physiology to add to the quality of our lives. Plant based drugs that can extend mental capacity as we age are just one of many benefits seen coming from this study as well as others that will surely follow.


My take:

This is great news because I love rosemary and use it all the time. We grow it outdoors in the summer and indoors in the winter. I had no idea that it could help brain function, and frankly many would deny that is the case based on my exposure to the herb, but none the less I am happy to hear that there are more reasons to grow it other than the wonderful aroma and and the great flat breads that it makes.


Other Resources

After Surgery Details

Most plastic surgeons these days will usually have some procedures in place to make sure that the actual surgery process goes as well as it to be expected, but for the more invasive procedures that a Destin Florida plastic surgeon might do, it’s a good idea to make one’s home hospitable to someone who is recovering from surgery such as investing in some simply created meals such as microwave meals. Another tip that’s great for anyone who’s had work done on their body is to bring things that are high on shelves onto the counter to remove the need to reach up.

Continuing Healthy Activities in Winter

One of the most difficult issues that a person might have if they live in a northern location that ends up having a ton of snow each year is the idea that going out into the snow to do things like run and play various outdoor sports can be intimidating and even impossible if everything is covered with snow and ice. For the most part a person can get around this issue by going to a Lansing Michigan gym in the winter when it is very common for people to get out of shape and simply stop exercising on a daily basis.

Taking Teeth Seriously

There are many important reasons why brushing and flossing the teeth on a regular basis are important, but interestingly it would seem that many people do not otherwise consider their teeth to be a vital part of their health regimen and many Fairfax Station VA dentists have seen clients that think all they have to do is visit a dentist twice a year and they’ll be fine as far as tooth decay is concerned. This is fairly untrue and anyone who wants to keep their teeth looking great should always make sure to brush and floss every day.

Full Rotation of Movement

The advent of robotic surgery has come, and no longer are the complex robotic devices used in such instances considered out of this world and futuristic even if they’re capable of performing New Jersey robotic kidney surgery in record time. One of the interesting advantages to the sort of movement capable by robotic arms is that robotic arms can actually perform a full circular motion with the arm which is something that a human arm would not be able to do. These enhanced movements allow for different methods and processes to be utilized in such surgery which allows for more advancement within the surgical world.


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Consumer Confidence Rises

Cited: MSNBC

Of the many parts of the U.S. economy that is scrutinized for signs that the state of the country is returning to good health, some are more notable than others. Unemployment rates and the gyrations in the housing market are among the two biggest sectors of the economy that market analysts watch to gauge the progress in the recovery that some say is fully underway. And within these areas of note are literally hundreds of smaller components that make up the larger figures most familiar to pedestrian viewers of the markets. For instance, while most everyone is familiar with the national unemployment rate and what it means, not quite as many people are aware that the most closely followed part of this report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is the monthly report on non-farm payrolls. This is the piece of data that the real money wants to see and with it, various aspects of it, including wage growth and average hourly work week.

The same holds true for the housing market with smaller parts of the bigger picture including new housing starts, existing home sales, new permits, and new multi-family construction starts. And considering that the largest part of the U.S. economy is  the consumer and consumer spending, you can imagine that the American shopper goes through just as extensive an examination of all things retail as any other bit of data reviewed by market analysts and economists around the country.

One of the more closely followed reports on the American consumer is the consumer confidence reports that are released on a monthly basis. The most recent report for February showed that consumer confidence reached a one year high to a level of 70.8% from 61.5% in January. The data is compiled and released by the Conference Board, which said that consumer concerns over the rising prices at the gas pump were more than offset by the improving labor market. Market expectations for the February consumer confidence data was much lower at 63.0% so the better than expected data was a welcome bit of information for the U.S. markets.

Of primary importance to the American consumer is his or her job and on that note 38.7% of the respondents said that jobs were hard to get this month, down from 43.3% in January. Respondents that thought that jobs were more plentiful in January rose to 6.6% from 6.2%.


My take:

Overall the economy seems to be pulling itself out of the ditch. I just hope that prices at the pump don’t derail the whole damn thing and that underlying it all is yet another conspiracy to undermine the Obama Administration. Playing politics with people’s lives is not a game, though many would justify it by saying that the end justifies the means. I don’t agree and just hope that the economy continues to grow better and better and that more families can crawl out of the ditch themselves.


Other Resources

Multi-Level Playgrounds for Kids

Getting to go to a playground is definitely something that is a great activity for kids as they will usually be able to engage in some healthy exercise and activity while they are at the playground and it’s generally the case that commercial playground equipment has been designed in such a way that it is meant to be safe for all types of kids. Occasionally there are playgrounds that are designed with specific ages and activity levels in mind. There are also some playgrounds that are designed to accommodate special needs kids with various safety mechanisms included in the design.

Renting or Buying Equipment

Most of the time when an individual is likely to make a purchase on equipment that is considered a significant price, it’s best to investigate whether those items can be purchased in a used state, whether they can be rented or whether it’s simply best to outright purchase something like skid steer loaders attachments. Heavy equipment and major pieces that are going to be used for the lifetime of the company should usually be purchased, but that still leaves open the possibility and decision for making a purchase of used equipment or one of brand new equipment.

Numbers and Math in Betting

There are a lot of people who never try out betting in any serious form since they are just not that convinced that they would be at all successful with real sports betting because they’re not experts in the field of mathematics and don’t know a lot about sports. But knowing absolutely everything behind the mathematics of betting along with all of the underlying specifics of every sport isn’t necessarily required for successful sports bets. Learning about betting is possible for anyone and doesn’t take a college degree in finite math, calculus and advanced geometry.

Avoiding Luxury Goods and Services

There is a rule within bankruptcy law that might surprise some people who decide to file for bankruptcy and that’s the issue of spending on credit cards and the idea that a Garnerville NY bankruptcy lawyer might not be able to get certain debts discharged if the debtor was purchasing something that the courts would consider luxury goods. Having to go to the grocery store is one thing but usually the act of buying something that wasn’t otherwise absolutely needed for survival doesn’t sit well with the courts and they could refuse to discharge that particular debt.

Finding Tax Deductions

When a company is trying to make sure that they are doing everything they can to reduce their tax bill, there are a number of good tax deductions that a CPA would likely be able to share with the business which are completely tax deductible or which can be taken off over a series of years. While some types of deductions might get a tax attorney involved, as long as the deductions taken by a company are realistic and legal, there should be no problems. On tax deduction that people often forget about is software that can be taken off over three years.


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Dance With Flickering Stars

Cited: MSNBC

The new season of  “Dancing with the Stars” is approaching and while the show’s producers already have their own lineup of dancing hipsters ready to cut it up, many in that keep an eye on all things pop would love to see a few less than mainstream stars strut their stuff on the popular TV show. The 2012 season is already set with some familiar and some not so familiar names among the 14 new celeb contestants that will don their dancing shoes while vying for the top spot on the show. Among the new “dancing fools” are Gladys Knight, Melissa Gilbert, Jack Wagner, Gavin DeGraw, Donald Driver of the Green Bay Packers, Roshon Fegan, Katherine Jenkins, William Levy, Maria Menounos, Martina Navratilova, Sherri Sheperd, and Jaleel White.

Avid followers of Dancing with the Stars have been asking for bigger name celebs on the show but it is doubtful that they will ever be able to land Brad Pitt, John Travolta (he would be considered a ringer anyway), or Michele Obama so the producers have to do the best they can. Most of the really big stars are pretty busy and few if any of them would like to see their star fall so far that it lands on the set of Dancing with the Stars. It would be like having your career end on the Hollywood Squares and finding yourself hoping that one day you can actually unseat Paul Lind for the middle square.

On the other hand, viewers are more sensible than you might think and bearing in mind that their favorite four star celebs won’t be dancing for them, many of them have suggested that perhaps the producers might want to opt for more controversial and colorful types to add some spice to the show. Some of the names suggested for the B list for Dancing with the Stars have been Axl Rose (though he would be something of a risk on many levels), Joan Rivers (if she can keep all of her parts together for an entire season),  Courtney Love (talk about a black widow spider in capezios), Snookie (now that would be worth watching), and former President Jimmy Carter.

The producers of the show have yet to comment on the off-color list of dancing candidates but it is doubtful if they are open to suggestions that include Snookie; just in case she loses!


M y take:

I know that people like the show and that it is indeed very popular but I just don’t get it. In fact, I don’t get it so much that I would probably only watch it if they did start to get some more “colorful” celebs out there cutting the rug. How about Gene Simmons, Alice Cooper, Ozzy, and Bill Clinton? That would be worth watching.


Other Resources

Surprises and Planning

Some of the hardest types of parties to plan are those that will take place around the time of a wedding, especially if those parties are meant to be something that was otherwise a surprise. Most of the time a groom will know that he is going to be treated to Nevada bachelor parties when he has his wedding in Vegas, but making the events of the bachelor party a surprise are often what is most valuable about the planning experience. While some people might just go to a bar or a strip club, there are some more creative ideas out there.



Michigan Adds Jobs….But

Cited: CNN

With the Republican Primary race focused squarely on the outcome in Michigan, its easy to understand why the economic health of the state is of “primary” importance, so to speak. On that note, things are looking up for a state whose primary employer, the auto industry, was teetering on the brink of disaster less than three years ago. The recession hit the auto industry especially hard and led to the near collapse of the Big Three, GM, Ford and Chrysler. Unemployment in the state rose over 14% and a national debate was sparked over the Obama Administration’s decision to provide a government bailout of the industry to help them get back on their feet.

Fast-forward to February 2012 and the economics of Michigan have changed dramatically, especially for the auto industry in Michigan and the surrounding states that depend on this core manufacturing sector of the economy for their very existence. The Big Three are profitable at the same time for the first time since 2004, unemployment in the state has dropped to just over 9%, still high but moving in the right direction, and the debate over the merits of the government bailout has a few of the Republican candidates running for cover because of their outspoken opposition to the emergency measures taken by the Obama Administration.

However, before everyone in the state breaks their collective arms patting themselves on the back, including the hoards of politicians clamoring to take credit for the miracle, it is important to understand that while the unemployment rate is indeed falling and jobs are coming back to Michigan, these are not necessarily new jobs and fewer and fewer jobs are actually being created. How can this be with the data looking so damn good?

Well, for one thing the labor force in Michigan is shrinking, as it is in most of the U.S. Given a population with one of the highest number of baby boomers, Michigan’s work force is aging quickly. This means that those that might have lost their jobs in the last couple of years aren’t coming back into the work force, some have moved out of state, and others have actually gone back to school to learn other skills. The other point about the falling unemployment rate in Michigan is that so many workers have run out of unemployment benefits that they have fallen off the roles and therefore no longer counted among the unemployed.


My take:

The size of the labor force and changes in the labor force has always been a part of the overall unemployment picture and the fact that our population is aging isn’t really news to anyone so it makes sense that the labor force is shrinking. This should not diminish the gains made over the last three years to get this area of the country back on its feet. To have let the auto industry go bust and then try to crawl back would’ve been one of the worst, most callously irresponsible thing a government could ever do to the good citizens of the U.S.


Other Resources

Installing Software for Multiple Uses

One of the important elements of budgeting and tracking employee expenditures and time spent on various projects is the installation of various software products which have been designed to enhance a company’s ability to track how employees are faring in various types of areas. Installing time study software that has been crafted in the past few years is a good idea because such types of software have often been programmed in such a way that they can track more than just one thing. Installing software that does multiple things is always a good idea for businesses of all sizes.

Kosher Meals and Ease

There are certainly a lot of popular food crazes that come along and interest sections of the populace that might not otherwise be interested in such options and it’s not uncommon at all for people to find that they are interested in obtaining kosher food for their family’s meals. And there are definitely a lot of companies that have started to provide meal options to satisfy this need, but it’s important to always make sure that if a person is interested in eating a kosher lifestyle that proper research and confirmation regarding kosher options are always obtained.

New Business Advertising

When a company is new and does not have a strong following for its brand name, there will invariably be talks of how best to expand upon current advertising within the realm of branding and how an infusion of business cash might speed that process up. There have been some major companies to have come along in recent years who spent millions and even hundreds of millions of dollars on branding during their initial years in operation and it remains to be seen whether such significant spending on that particular facet of marketing was a good idea for those companies or whether it will eventually backfire.

Gaining Information through a Site

There is the expectation by some businesses who have yet to conquer the digital space that everyone who has a website must always include options for customers to make purchases online and as Louisiana website builders can confirm, just because a company has a website doesn’t necessarily mean that they might be involved in online sales. But that doesn’t mean that having a website isn’t extremely important anyway. Customers these days are increasingly turning to the internet to make decisions on purchases and they will often require information from internet sources even if their final purchase is at a brick and mortar location.


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