Friday, November 30, 2012

How to price a business

How to price a business, or how to sell a business, may present a problem that is difficult to correct unless you take a certain step beforehand.  Here's what led up to this post:

I just spent an interesting afternoon chatting with John Coto, a highly-recommended business broker in New England.  We were discussing the future sale of one of my sidelines (especially how to price the business)  and John brought up a subject I’d not even thought about before.

“Between 90 and 95 percent of all the sellers come to me with the same problem,” he said.

Can you guess what that problem is?

The problem is how to prove to the prospective buyer what the true income of the business is, when the seller has been cooking the books for years. This is especially true when the business, such as a Laundromat, a restaurant, or a bar, has a largely cash income. “Some of these guys,” says John, “are skimming up to half the profits. I tell them I can’t help them get paid for what they do not report.

Are you planning to sell your business some day?

If so, why not start declaring the true income?  In such a case, the buyer may not believe the tax returns and might falsely assume you are making even more money, and will therefore be quite anxious to buy!

Another advantage is that you will sleep better at night. Trust me on this one!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Is this vital container missing from your urban survival bug-out bag?

If you've ever read my e-book Invisible Money (currently being revised), you know what vital container is missing from this partial list for your urban survival bug-out bag.

No, it’s not food, rigid water containers, flashlights, batteries, two-way radios, a multi-tool, paracord, or mylar blankets.  Neither is it maps, water proof matches, a signal mirror, safety whistles, hand sanitizer, a first aid kit, or ponchos.
What’s missing is a can of fruit cocktail that does not contain any fruit. Instead, it should contain cash in various denominations. Depending on the domination, a hollow can safe with a screw bottom can contain anywhere from $200 up to $5,000 or more.  So here are two questions about the contents of your urban survival bug-out bag:

1.  Does it contain an ample supply of cash?  If not, why not?

2.  Is this cash well-hidden in a can safe of some kind?  If not, why not?
Add these to your urban survival bug-out bag:

A small marine air horn, some whistles, and a Kubotan. For details, check out Dirty Tricks for Savvy Chicks.  The information in this newly-revised ebook on self defense applies to guys as well as gals, and especially to senior citizens.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Petraeus-Broadwell-Allen-Kelley emails—no encryption!

If this were fiction, no one would believe that the head of the CIA could be that dumb. And not only that—Broadwell assumed that her “anonymous” message to Kelly could not be traced!  What planet are these people from?

For the past fifteen years I have preached (mostly to deaf ears) that the only fairly secure way to communicate secrets are (a) to use postal mail, and (2) to shred the letters after reading.

Note to Kelly: 

In the future, send your threats only by mail. Handle the paper and envelope with rubber gloves. Use water, not saliva, when you close the flap.  Drop in an outdoor mailbox far from home. One with no TV surveillance.

Note to Petraeus and Broadwell:

For various reasons, email is never secure.True, you were not actually sending the emails. Instead, using anonymous accounts, you merely composed messages and left them in a draft folder for the other to access.  This is normally a secure way to communicate, but in this case FBI did find the accounts and all your messages were in plain text!  It appears, therefore, that the lack of encryption seems to have brought you two down.

Note to all readers:

If you don't yet have the third edition of How to Be Invisible, order it right now!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Three reasons to renounce U.S. citizenship

Keyword searches on Google for "renounce citizenship" have soared in the past week. IMHO, these are three of the main reasons, especially the first:

1.  "I can't stand Obamanomics for another four years--the man's driving this country to bankruptcy!"

2.  "Taxes were too high already and they're going to go higher so I'm renouncing citizenship and I'll soon be outta here!" 

3.  "Between Homeland 'Security,' the TSA, and the Patriot Act, privacy is being lost, so it's ¡Adios! to Big Brother."

Are any of the above reasons for renouncing citizenship valid? 

Personally, in regard to the first item above, I see no hope from either party. Neither will face the fact that the only way to start paying off the national debt is to reduce entitlements. But the big problem is, if you do renounce your U.S. citizenship, where will you go?

I'd like to hear some suggestions from you readers!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

I disagree with Scott Adams' comments about Big Brother

On his blog on November 6th, Scott Adams ["Dilbert"] says all privacy has already been lost, and who cares?  He gives this list:

Keep in mind that the government already knows the following things about you:

1.       Where you live
2.       Your name
3.       Your income
4.       Your age
5.       Your family members
6.       Your social security number
7.       Your maiden name
8.       Where you were born
9.       Criminal history of your family
10.   Your own criminal record
11.   Your driving record
12.   Your ethnicity
13.   Where you work and where you used to work
14.   Where you live and where you used to live
15.   Names of your family members
16.   The value of your home now
17.   The amount you paid for your home
18.   The amount you owe on your home
19.   Your grades in school
20.   Your weight, height, eye color, and hair color

Item #1:  I have news, Mr. Scott Adams of  Dilbert fame:  The government does not know where I live, and they do not know where thousands of my readers live, either!

Does the government know where YOU live?  If they do, would you like to change that?  If so, order my report on how to do that by clicking here. True, it's free on my website, although my webmaster makes you register first. You most likely already have an account on Amazon so c'mon, folks--you can afford 99 cents so order now.  Money-back guarantee!

(After you read it, please leave a review on Amazon. Okay? Deal?)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Can your bank track the use of a credit card in real time?

Whitney Heichel (DMV photo)

You bet it can, and in some cases that’s a good thing. The October 16th Whitney Heichel rape-and-murder case in Oregon was big-time news, at least on the west coast. Here are some details that did not appear in the front-page articles in the Oregon newspapers:

Whitney, 21,  said good bye to her husband Clint and left at 6:50 am to go her job at the local Starbucks coffee shop. At 8:30 am her boss called Clint to report than she had failed to show up. After calling friends to see if anyone had seen her, Clint called the police. However, he was informed that the police are not allowed  to look for anyone missing until 24 hours have elapsed.

STOP: If you were the husband and you knew your wife has disappeared, what would you do? What could you do?

The one advantage Clint had going for him was that both he and Whitney were Jehovah’s Witnesses, so his next call went to one of the elders in their congregation. At this point, some rules or laws were probably broken so I’ll called the elder “Vic,” the bank  “Third State,” and the bank employee Suzy.  Here’s what happened, and this is where the title of this blog will be tied in.

Vic asked Clint where they banked, and Clint told him "Third Bank."  Clint happened to know Suzy, one of the officers at that bank, so he raced over, explained the extreme urgency, and had Suzy ignore Third Bank’s privacy rules. Sure enough, someone had filled up with gas miles away, using Whitney’s credit card.

Clint and Vic raced to the gas station, explained the urgency, and were allowed to view the security tape. It showed Whitney’s vehicle pulling out of the station, with a man's arm sticking out the window. Vic immediately called a Witness with search and rescue experience and asked for help. Within a few hours, hundreds of volunteers were doing an organized search pattern of the area. By the time the police entered the search on the following day (Wednesday), the Witnesses had already found Whitney’s jacket 12 miles away.

On Thursday, Whitney’s uncle Scott was in a car group that decided to search the road that leads up to Larch Mountain, in the Cascades. They stopped at aisle marker 10 where they spotted tire marks on the side of road, some broken glass and a bent up license plate lying in some tall grass. It was Whitney’s license plate! Scott knew the county sheriff so he immediately called him.

To keep this story short, the body was found and the alleged murderer is now behind bars, awaiting trial. Here are two lessons to keep in mind, should you, a family member, or a friend are ever be caught in a similar emergency situation.
1.  Since the police will not enter the case of a missing adult for 24 hours,  if you are a member of a closely-knit group such as JWs, Adventists, or LDS, call for help! If not, round up workmates, relatives and friends. 

2.  If you know where the missing person banks, make a frantic appeal to one of the officers to ignore the bank’s just this one time. "Rules are made to be broken."