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Archive for May, 2012

The Best Small towns in America…Where the Living is Truly Easy!

There are lists of the best places to get a job, retire, ski, golf and fall in love, best places lists for almost everything. The editors of SMITHSONIAN MAGAZINE have produced  the best list of small towns in America, not only to travel to but to live in or retire to.What makes their list so special is that they focused on towns with populations less than 25,000 that have a high concentration of cultural assests common to big cities such as museums, historic sites, botanic gardens, resident orchestras, art galleries, good food. Travelers, visitors and residents can experience what might be called enlightened good times in an unhurried, charming setting. There is something encouraging about finding culture in small-town America. These small towns reinforce the truth that big cities and grand institutions per se don’t produce creative works, individuals do. And being reminded of that is fun.

  1. Great Barrington, MA.  Big city smart meets New England natural in an art-rich mountain setting. Great Barrington (pop. 6,800) is like a big city where you can get anything you want, to borrow the chorus from hometown boy Arlo Guthrie’s Alice’s Restaurant. He was 18 when he wrote the satirical ballad about true events on Thanksgiving Day 1965, when he got arrested for illegally dumping some of Alice’s trash, ultimately making him ineligible for the Vietnam War draft. Trinity Church, former abod of the celebrated Alice, is now the Guthrie Center, a stage for folk music, starting point of the “Historic Garbage Trail Walk” and a place for interfaith spiritual exchange in a town where there could be something contrarian in the water. Take a walk down Railroad Street and you’re likely  to run into folks carrying yoga mats, bags of farmers market produce, books, CD’s double espressos and all the other stuff it’s hard to find in surrounding Berkshire Mountain villages. Great Barrington is devoted to its family farms, and farmers markets that promote the production of locally grown food. Another local boy is W.E.B. DuBois, the great African-American author and educator. His boyhood home just west of town is a National Historic Landmark. Incorporated in 1761 attracted rich summer people who built Gilded Age mansions like Searles Castle, now a boarding school. About 125 miles from New York City, it attracts a hip crowd from the Big Apple, along with New Englanders and recent immigrants from Asia and Mexico. Among its other attractions is a lovingly restored 1905 vaudeville theater, home to a year-round schedule of jazz, rock, dance, lectures and HD broadcasts from London’s National Theater and New York’s Metropolitan Opera. Early summer brings the Berkshire International Film Festival and just a country drive away there’s Tanglewood, Shakespeare and Company, the Norman Rockwell Museum and Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. To top it all off there’s the frame that nature put aound the picture, with 1,642-foot Monument Mountain to the east and the rest of the Berkshires to the west. Orchards are sheer walls of pink in the spring, farm fields thick with corn in  the summer. Fall leaf-peepers train cameras on golden oaks and crimson maples. Honking geese pass over ice-coated bogs and ponds in the watershed of the Housa-tonic River. All this and bagel, too. Arlo got it right.
  2. TAOS, NM. Modern art, ancient history and counter-culture in the luminous high desert. Beyond Santa Fe, the high road (Highway 76) and the low road (Highway 68) are both beautiful routes to little Taos in the enchanted upper valley of the Rio Grande. Before the counterculture found it in the 1960’s, before Spanish missionaries and mountain men like Kit Carson arrived, even before the building of the Taos pueblo in the 15th century, the Anasazi were here, leaving their ghosts to walk in the shadow of the Sangre de Christo Mountains.  These days tourists, seekers, skiers and other outdoor enthusiasts pack the plaza of the old adobe town, dabble in its many galleries and museums, delve into history at the 1804 Spanish Colornial Martinez Hacienda and attend concerts (the Music form Angel Fire is a world-class chamber music festival). But Taos (pop. 5,700) still speaks most compellingly to writers, photographers and artists who like Georgia O’Keeffe and D.H. Lawrence before them, come for the flash of a passing spirit and the quality of the light.
  3. Red Bank, NJWillie Nelson and Basie swings in a riverfront town graced by Victoriana. William Count Basie grew up and got his muscial chops on Mechanic Street in Red Bank. In the early 1920’s he moved to Harlem and the rest is jazz history. His hometown on the south bank of the Navesink River about 25 miles south of Manhattan went through some lean, mean times after that, but has since made an astonishing cultural and economic comeback, linchpinned by the refurbishment of the 1926 Carlton Theater, now the Count Basie performing arts center, a venue for ballet  to rock to Willie Nelson. Cafes, galleries, clubs and shops followed, along with farmers markets and street fairs, attracting people from well-heeled Monmouth County and the Jersey Shore.  Town folk from Red Bank (pop. 12,200) went to work on neglected old homes with good bones, the landmark Victorian train depot was restored and the silver was polished the Molly Pitcher Inn, named for a Revolutionary War heroine who is said to have brought water to thirsy soldiers serving under George Washington during the battle of Monmouth County. The Navesink got a spiffy waterfront park, the setting for jazz concerts in the summer and iceboating when the river freezes, string quartets and youth choruses perform at  the Monmouth Conservatory of Music, while the Two River Theater Company stages new plays and musicals. It all adds up to a model for small town renewal.
  4. Mill Valley, CA. A Bay Area enclave that put mellow on the map keeps its funky vibe. Mill Valley (pop. 13,900) is one of the jewels in a necklace of beautiful towns–along with Sausalito, Marin City and Tiburon–across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. It’s tucked into a canyon on the flank of the 2,571-foot Mount Tamalpais, near the giant redwoods of Muir Woods National Monument and marshland surrounding Richardson Bay. The setting and proximity to San Francisco attracted sawmills, dairy farms and resort operators, then Beat poets and hippies who scandalized locals by skinny-dipping and smoking weed. A more recent influx of wealthy commuters has made Mill Valley one of  the nation’s wealthiest ZIP codes. Shops, galleries, organic food restaurants and art festivals cater to the newcomers, threatening to crowd out ratty old landmarks like the beloved Sweetwater Saloon where Bonnie Rait, Ry Cooder, Jerry Garcia and Elvis Costello played. The good news is that, as of this past January, the Sweetwater’s back, occupying new quarters in the town’s old Masonic Hall. The Art Commission sponsors concerts and comedy in the town plaza, and the Throckmorton Theater welcomes music groups like the Kingston Trio and Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, along with a June festival deicated to gypsy jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt.
  5. Gig Harbor, WA. Take numerous art  galeries. Add sailboats and local wines. Stir. Enjoy. Come by boat, as so many people do–beginning with a team of surveyors from the Congresionally mandated Wilkes Expedition in 1841–its easy to miss the narrow opening on  the ragged west edge of Puget Sound that marks the entrance to Gig Harbor (pop. 7,200). That would be a pity because it leads to one of the snuggest harbors in the Pacific Northwest, a thicket of sailboat masts rimmed by tall pines on the far side of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. When the sun shines you can see Mount Rainier and the snow crusted Cascades on the eastern horizon; in squally weather the sky closes in sp seascape artists paint from memory. Never mind. As local gallery owner Bill Fogarty would say, “Don’t let the drizzle get you down. Think of what it does for the rhododendrons.” The unprepossessing little town has been lately been discovered by outlanders from Tacoma and Seattle insearch of still relatively affordable waterfront property. Chain stores have sprung up out on the highway and old fishing docks have yielded to fancy powerboats and yachts. Daytrippers come for gourmet restaurants with Washington State wines. Don’t miss the gallery walks held on  the first Saturday of the month. Settled in the 19th century by immigrants from the Adriatic Coast of what now is Croatia. Gig Harbor is a little like Maine without the Yankees. The peninsula’s forested hinterlands became home to many Scandinavians, who built dairy farms and planted srawberry patches that send their riches to Puget Sound markets. Gig Harbor was isolated until the building of a bridge across the strait that separates the Olympic Peninsula from Tacoma. On any given summer seekend there’s likely to be a chowder cook-off, a quilt show or a festival celebrating boats, gardens or wine; vendors at the farmers market offer mandolin lessons along with strawberries and grass-fed beef. On open-air film nights folks pile on blankets spread across the lawn to watch Free Willy, Jaws or another maritime classic.
  6. Durango, CO. All aboard for mountain fun, plus classical tunes and–gasp–vaudeville. It would be a bald-faced lie to say that Durango (pop. 16,900) isn’t devoted above all to outdoor recreation, from mountain biking and black-diamond skiing to Ironman triathlons, white-water kayaking and rock climbing. But between adventures in the surrounding San Juan Mountains, people celebrate life Western-style in the old railroad and mining town’s lamppost-lined historic district, among art installations along the Animas River greenway, and at the nearby Music in the Mountains festival come July (heavy on the classical offerings, but a bit of pop, too), the Fort Lewis College Community Concert Hall, and the Henry Strater Theatre, a.k.a. the “Hank,” a showcase for vintage melodrama and vaudeville. Best of all the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad opened in 1882 and now a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark, still carries passengers 45 miles into the heart of the high San Juans, pulled by a coal-fired steam-driven locomotive, with the occasional bluegrass band or cowboy poet onboard for entertainment.
  7. Butler, PA. An old-time rural hub as down-to-earth as its most famous product– the Jeep. Mines and factories come to mind when people think about Western Pennsylvania, but forests and farms stretch across the state, punctutaed by small towns like the seat of Buttler County north of Pittsburgh in the Allegheny River watershed. Butler (pop. 13,800) is an American classic that grew up along a trail blazed by George Washington, sent in 1753 to discourage French settlement along the frontier. Farmers followed, giving the region its country character and prized hand-built barns. The town serves as a business and cultural hub, with its own baseball team, thriving downtown, community symphony, theater and barbershop chorus. The Maridon Museum, founded by local philanthropist Mary Hulton Phillips, houses an excellent collection of Asian art, and the Butler County Historical Society maintains an old settler’s cabin, schoolhouse and the landmark 1828 Lowrie Shaw House. Butler owes its star on the map to the Jeep, invented just before World War II at the town’s American Bantam Car Company and still celebrated in August at the Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival.
  8. Marfa, TX. With mock culture, edgy movies and ironic motels, it’s no cow town. It’s just a fly speck in the flat, hot, dusty cattle country of southwest Texas–closer to Chihuahua than Manhattan. But its cooking thanks to an influx of creative types from way downtown: filmmakers like the Coen brothers who shot No Country for Old Men in Marfa (pop. 1,900), indie rock bands and others who have brought such outre’ installations as Prada Marfa, a faux couture shop in the middle of nowhere by the artists, Elmgreen and Dragset. Cultutal camp followers arrived on their heels to open galleries, bookstores, gourmet food trucks and lodgings (in a historic Pueblo-Deco hotel and vintage trailer park called El Cosmico). It may have all started when people noticed the Marfa Mystery Lights, an optical phenomenon popularly attributed to UFOs and celebrated with parades, battling bands and exhibitions every Labor Day weekend. Or in the early 70’s when New York artist Donald Judd landed in Marfa to plant his massive mimimalist sculptures on a decommissioned military camp outside town, the core of the coollection now at the Donald Judd and Chinati foundations. These days–move over Austin–an Our Town grant from the NEA is helping Marfa’s not-for-profit Ballroom Foundation create the Drive-In, an open-air art space designed by the cutting edge New York architect firm MOS.
  9. Naples, FL. World-class music, design to die for and Palm trees: What’s not to like? Even when it’s snowing somewhere up north, around the historic Naples pier they’re catching mackerel, opening beach umbrellas and looking for treasure in the surf. Grandkids are building sand castles, pelicans are squawking and the Gulf of Mexico is smooth as far as the eye can see. Travelers have been coming to this small town (pop. 19,500) on the edge of  the Everglades ever since the  late 19th century when you could reach it only by boat and there was just one place to stay, the steeple-topped Naples Hotel, connected to the pier by a track with a cart for moving steamer trunks. Back then the visitors were chiefly sportsmen drawn to the abundant fish and game of southwest Florida’s cypress swamps. Once the Orange Blossom Express train reached Naples in 1927, followed a year later by the opening of the cross-peninsula hghway system the Tamiami Trail, sun-seekers arrived in boaters and bloomers, many of them Methodists from the Midwest who thought the drinking started too soon after Sunday church service in West Palm Beach. So when the snow flew, say, in Cincinnati, they decamped to winter retreats in Naples with wide sleeping porches, pine plank floors and whirring ceiling fans. Today Naples has malls and high-rise condos. Touristy development has taken over bayside docks where fishermen used to haul in giant grouper and tarpon. Traffic clogs the ritzy Fifth Avenue South shopping and restaurant district but if you’re a first time visitor, check out the Naples Historical Society’s walking tours through the town’s winsome historic district and bougainvillea-lined back alleyways. If most of the folks you meet are over 65, in Naples old age looks pretty golden. Ask a duffer with a fishing pole how he likes his martinis and he’ll tell you the third one’s always beautiful (Methodists not withstanding). A fair percentage of the snowbirds are retired executives with cultural expectations and the means to pursue them. So the town has an astonishing concentration of deeply rooted cultural institutions like the Naples Zoo, located in a tropical garden founded in 1909, the Naples Players, a community  theater now in its 59th season; and the almost- as- venerable Naples Art Association in Cambler Park. Naples also boasts its own Philharmonic Orchestra, born 30 years ago on nearby Marco Island. This renowned group has its own state-of-the-art concert hall visited by the likes of Kathleen Battle and Itzhak Perlman along with Broadway musicals and appearences by the Sarasota Opera and Miami Ballet. Bronze sculpture by the Spanish artist Manolo Valdes’ and massive art glass by Dale Chihuly spill over into the lobby from the galleries in the adjoining Naples Museum of Art. Dozens of Art galleries line Third Street South from the designated Design District. Meanwhile, at the Naples Pier, there’s bound to be someone at an easel, with a palette provided by the Gulf of Mexico–all sky blue, sand white and aquamarine.
  10. Staunton, VA.  A Shenandoah mix of Confederate relics and Elizabethan theater. Drop the U when pronouncing Staunton (pop.  23,700) and you’ll sound like a local. The town looks west to the Appalachians, east to the Blue Ridge at the heart of  the Shenandoah Valley. Staunton played its role on the early frontier and as a staging center for the Confederate Army, bred America’s 28th president (a highlight of the Woodrow Wilson Museum is the 1918 Pierce-Arrow limo he used after negotiating the Treaty of Versailles at the end of World War I) and nurtured the Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind and Mary Baldwin College. More recently it has added such cultural assets as the Dixie Theater movie house, Mockingbird Roots Music Hall, Heifetz International Music Institute, the outdoor Oak Grove Theater and above all, the American Shakespeare Center, housed in a landmark re-creation of London’s Blackfriars Playhouse, where original staging techniques such as role-doubling are replicated and the dramaturge doesn’t shy away from a bit of Elizabethan bawdy now and then. Staunton’s National Historic Register red brick downtown has galleries, a camera museum, an old-fashioned trolley and Tiffany window-lined Trinity Church. Up the hill at  Victorian-era  Thornrose Cemeter, there’s a separate section holding the remains of almost 2,000 Confederate soldiers, while the bandshell in nearby Gypsy Hill Park serves as the summertime home of the 70-piece Stonewall Brigade Band, founded in 1855 to feature the then novel saxophone.

Little Known IRS Office That Actually Works For the 99%

This posting is considerably longer than any other I have ever done. Take my word for it. Ignore the “TL;DR” crowd, this one you will really enjoy! It’s the inside story about a government office that actually works to save all of us from paying more taxes than we should.

DEFENDER OF LAST RESORT…Nina Olson is director of the Taxpayer Advocate Service, whose job is to oversee “advocates” in every state. These employees of the IRS who represent taxpayers in egregious disputes with the service. The advocates are grease in the gears of an agency that gets jammed all too often.

Olson wins relief for 70 percent of the 300,000 people and businesses that open a case

There has been only one national taxpayer advocate, Olson, has held the position since Congress created it a decade ago. She presides over 2,000 caseworkers and data analysts–a sliver of the IRS, which employs over 100,000 people. Individuals, corporations, small businesses, even millionaires and sovereign nations have sought the help of the  Taxpayer Advocate Service, as have accountants and trained tax preparers who find the tax code and the IRS impossible to navigate. In a typical year, Olson wins relief for 70 percent of the 300,000 people and businesses that open a case, according to her office. Many of these petitioners have usually exhausted most other opportunities for recourse and are often experiencing severe economic hardship.

Though she has characterized IRS procedures as Kafkaesque, Olson empathizes with the agency. Congress is constantly demanding that it collect more revenue, both to bridge what’s known as the tax gap–the more than $385 billion discrepancy between the revenue  the IRS actually collects and the amount the government believes it is owed each year–and to pay down the federal deficit. While Congress demands more money from the IRS, however, it has not been generous in funding the agency.

Congress is also making the tax code more complicated every day. Right now it tops out at 3.8 million words, four times as long as War and Peace. The IRS doesn’t have the manpower to manage the scads of credits and changes to the code it is required to enforce. And computer glitches are entangling more people in audits than ever before–millions in just this year.

“For the majority of taxpayers, the IRS has become faceless, nameless, with no accountability and no liability.”

Part of Olson’s job is to target the agency’s failures and shame it into fixing them. At the same time, she’s looking at taxpayers and trying to figure out why some of them don’t pay. She recently gave a speech to the Federal Bar Association’s annual lunch with the  theme: How the 99% experiences the tax system. She started with the bad news:

  • One in three won’t get their calls to the IRS answered.
  • The wait time for half of all people who have written to the IRS is more than six weeks.

When I heard that“, she exclaimed, whacking her head, “I nearly hit my head against a wall.” “For the majority of taxpayers, the IRS has become faceless, nameless, with no accountability and no liability.” One of the attorney’s in the audience said “she’s completely right”. He called his dealings with the IRS “a hall of mirrors, where there are no real people and only disembodied voices with badge numbers.” He  was recently snarled with a two-year fight to reverse a $24,000 penalty for a client, a Midwest manufacturer. He said “No business could stay in business behaving the way the IRS does toward people.” The case was resolved only after he brought it to the local affiliate of Olson’s agency.

“I saw the consequences of an irrational and overly burdensome approach to tax administeration,”

Olson, 58, is an improbable insider, an animated woman who prefers hot pink blazers and jangly earrings to power suits. She lives in a D.C. townhouse and walks two miles to work every day. When she was younger, she wanted to be a painter. She studied fine arts at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania and moved to Chapel Hill, N.C., after graduation to start her painting career. She took a part-time job working for a lawyer, whose clients were local wineries, coffee shops, and artists. Olson had a knack for numbers and organizaton, so friends and local businesspeople started asking her to prepare their tax returns. To her surprise, she was good at it. She bought a copy of the tax code and taught herself its ins and outs. In 1987 she enrolled in North Carolina Central University School of Law, taking night classes while working for the lawyer and raising her son by herself. Four years later she became a tax attorney. In 1991 the local bar association asked if she’d be willing to take on some pro bono work. Olson wanted to use her tax expertise to help those who were unable to buy groceries or pay rent because the IRS was levying their paychecks. The following year she started an independent low-income tax clinic, the first of its kind in the country. Soon  the clinic was serving about a thousand taxpayers. One woman was an immigrant from Egypt, who earned $10,000 a year as a hairdresser and was being charged about $35,000 by the IRS. The woman’s husband, who beat her, had defrauded the IRS without her knowledge. When the agency uncovered the scheme, he fled  the country. The woman could barely read English and had never filed a tax return, but the IRS viewed her as uncooperative. It took Olson four years to free the woman of her obligations. “I saw the consequences of an irrational and overly burdensome approach to tax administeration,” she says.

In the 1990’s the Senate held scathing hearings lambasting the agency for abusing taxpayers, which eventually led to the passage of the Internal Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act in 1998. The new law increased oversight of the IRS and included federal funding to expand low-income tax clinics. It also created the naional taxpayer advocate, a position that reported to then Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, not the IRS commissioner. Two years later she was appointed to become the first, and to date, the only director of The Taxpayer Advocate Service, whose position has no term limits. She told herself that she would stay until she got bored or until frustration with the IRS drove her to quit. “I’m not bored yet”, she says. “And I still have a bit more work to do”.

Olson’s story ran in the April 9–April 15 issue of Bloomberg Businessweek and this posting is an except from it.  As citizens of the United States we are all entitled to make use of this little known service that has resolved many tax problems of the 99%…and we are grateful for such an exemplary government employee as Nina Olson.

If you’ve taken the time to read through this posting and learned something you didn’t know before, as I did, I thank you very much and I would appreciate hearing from any new readers as well as regular followers.

The Greatest Entrepreneurs of Our Times!

Who Would be on your list?   This list compiled by the editors of FORTUNE MAGAZINE and published in their April 9, 2012 issue lists  their choice of  The Greatest. See if you agree. All information is based on calendar year, 2011.

  1. Steve Jobs/Apple…Sales 108.2 billion…Market Value $546 billion… Employees 63,300
  2. Bill Gates/Microsoft…Sales $69.9 billion…Market Value $30 billion…Employees 255,593
  3. Fred Smith/FedEx…Sales $39.3 billion…Market Value $30 billion…Employees 255,573
  4. Jeff Bezos/Amazon…Sales $8.1 billion…Market Value $84.6 billion…Employees 56,200
  5. Larry Page & Sergey Brin/Google…Sales $37.9 billion…Market Value $203.2 billion…Employees  32,500
  6. Howard Schultz/Starbucks…Sales $11.7 billion…Market Value $40 billion…Employees 149,000
  7. Mark Zuckerberg/Facebook…Sales $3.1 billion…Market Value $75-100 billion (est.)…Employees 3,200
  8. John Mackey/Whole Foods…Sales $10.1 billion…Market Value $15.5 billion…Employees 56,200
  9. Herb Kelleher/S.W. Airlines…Sales $15.5 billion…Market Value $64 billion…Employees 45,392
  10. Noira Yang Murthy/Infosys…Sales $6.0 billion…Market Value $32 billion…Employees 145,059
  11. Sam Walton/Wal-Mart…Sales $446.9 billion…Market Value $316.5 billion…Employees 2.0 million

Total Sales… $796.7 billion

Total Market Value… $1.4 Trillion

Total Employees… 3,063,000

Becoming  an entrepreneur is certainly a worthwhile goal if making a lot of money is what motivates you but there’s no guarantee of wealth and the majority of people who decide to start their own business, frankly do not succeed. It  takes dedication, long hours and a good idea. There are many bumps along the road to entrepreneurial success so be sure to look for advice and help from those who have been successful before. One guide I would highly recommend to  those who would like to own a  business of their own, one  that can be started part-time and is perfect for  those who would like to run it from their home is MAIL ORDER, also known as Direct Response. The internet has been an eye-opener and a game changer for mail order businesses and has helped create MAIL ORDER MILLIONAIRES almost overnight. Just about every successful business you see online is a mail order business. Direct Response means  that products or services are sold direct to the public not  through brick and mortar retailers. Companies like AMAZONZAPPOS, FIRST STREET, STAUER, BRADFORD EXCHANGE, HEARING HELP EXPRESS, GRAVITY DEFYER, HABAND…just to name a few of the very successful mail order companies you see advertise regularly in magazines sell their products direct to the public.

As a reader of my blog I  would like to help you get started in this wonderful business  that changed my life and can change yours, too.

HOW TO BECOME A MAIL ORDER MILLIONAIRE is available online from AMAZON at its published price of $39.95 plus s&h…..or you can save $10 and order it direct from the publisher for $29.95 plus $3.50 s&h (total $33.45). Send check or money order along with your name and address to: SUPERIOR PRESS 333 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 1032, Chicago, IL 60601. Sold on a 100% guarantee of satisfaction or your money back.

The Secret Formulas for Success

ARE THERE MATHEMATICAL LAWS THAT GUARANTEE SUCCESS?
Scentists have uncovered special laws that reveal How To Become Successful!

  • Success Code #1…The Power Handshake. Putting your free hand on the arm of the person you’re shaking hands with signifies power and influence.  The handshake is a key determinant of success–it conveys, among other things, the level of regard in which you hold the person you’re shaking hands with. Make your grip firm, but not too firm. Your palm should be cool and dry, and hands should be pumped up and down three times–but for no longer than a total of 3 seconds. It’s also very important to look the person inthe eye and smile.
  • Success Code #2…Promote your “Happiness Hormones”. Happiness can spread like an epidemic. If you’re happy you will attract successful happy individuals to your side. Your motivation level will rise and over a period of years by making friends with happy motivated people, who usually are successful, you’ll become one of them.
  • Success Code #3…Learn to drink moderately with your friends and coworkers. The key word here is “moderately”. A study has shown that people who drink one to three beers with their friends or coworkers earn 17% more on average than those who don’t imbibe socially. Heavy drinkers are also known to earn around 6% less in salary on average.
  • Success Code #4…It’s called the “Pareto Principle”. It’s a simple formula that almost always produces business success. The founders of Google knew from the get-go that their company would be successful because they relied on this principle. It’s also known as the 80-20 rule. It states that 80% of a company’s success is generated by just 20% of the work and effort expended by its employees. Therefore, one of the primary components necessary for them to be successful was to have each employee at the company spend 20% of his or her time in the development of new ideas,–such as Google +.
  • Success Code #5… 1.618 If you have the desire to build an exemplary house, shoot the perfect photo, or paint a picture that all the galleries will want then make sure you know this number: 1.618. It expresses the perfect proportion between two lengths. Leonardo da Vinci’s teacher discovered this Golden Ratio (aka the Divine Proportion) in old manuscripts that he came upon more than 500 years ago. He then passed the knowledge on to his pupil, who used the formula  to create  the most precious painting of all time: the Mona Lisa.
  • Succes Code #6…Watch your body language.  Your body language can help you become successful. Start with your posture. The right posture will make you more confident. Arms relaxed, lean back slightly, chest protuding a bit. Mastering these posture hints will actually program yourself to adopt an attitude of self-assurance. A slightly tilted head is usually an indication of interest or contemplation–but if the tilt is accompanied by arms folded protectively in front of the body, it’s a sign of a defensive mechanism. This programs the brain to be uncertain and ready to flee. Keep your body straight and arms relaxed to the side. Now that you’ve figured out the situation, you’re relaxed and confident. Your eyes communicate this attitude by looking firmly straight ahead or to the side. If you’re in a position to talk to someone, make eye contact. The brain then sends out the message that “everythings under control” Do not look down or away from the person you’re speaking to. Looking down indicates an attempt to distance yourself from a situation, causing your brain to get distracted and become programmed to feel disinterest and a lack of self-confidence. Your brain then shifts its focus to concentrate on internal conflicts. If you tend  to play with your fingers you’re sending negative signals. People do this generally because they’re attempting to calm themselves down when in a awkward situaion. Be aware of everything your body is doing at all times and you will be well on your way to becoming successful.

Todays blog post is excerpted from one of my favorite magazines i.d (Ideas and Discoveries) You can subscribe online: Idea & Discoveries Magazine

Now that I’ve got you properly motivated to become successful, let’s pause for our sponsor.

HOW TO BECOME A MAIL ORDER MILLIONAIRE can assure success in a business of your own. It is a complete guide to starting your own successful home based business. Written by long time mail order expert Fred Broitman, it contains everything you need to know about Mail Order.

You’ll learn:

  1. How to Get Started
  2. How to Find Great Products
  3. How  to Make Your Business Profitable From the Start
  4. How to Price Your Product or Service for Biggest  Profits
  5. Secrets of Creating Winning Mail Order Ads

and included in this revised edition…Complete Up-to-Date Information on How to Use the Internet to Super Charge your Business.

HOW TO BECOME A MAIL ORDER MILLIONAIRE is available from Amazon at its published price of $39.95 plus s&h or you can save $10 and order it direct from the publisher for $29.95 plus $3.50 s&h (Total $33.45). Send check or money order along with your name and address to: SUPERIOR PRESS 333 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1032, Chicago, IL 60601.

Worthwhile Books