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    Why Politics Matter - January 25, 2016 by admin

    In writing my first blog about politics, I really wasn’t sure where I should begin. Politics sometimes can be a touchy subject matter and I wasn’t sure if I should just dive right in and take a stance on something I believe in, or start with something a bit lighter.Constitution

    While thinking about that for awhile, a different point of view struck me. Not everyone may be into politics, and younger people do seem to be the most detached. Since this site is geared towards helping young people, it seemed appropriate to set issues aside and start from the beginning asking the simple question, why do politics really matter?

    Before I try and tackle that question I think its best to try and define what politics actually is. While reading  essay about What is Politics, I decided I probably couldn’t define it any better, so just go to the site and read this brilliantly written article on what politics really is.

    Anyway, back to the matter at hand, why do politics matter to us? Politics guide and influence our society, ranging from many of these important topics and issues, but not limited to:

    • Defining laws through our legal system
    • Providing protection through military defense
    • Influencing our economy
    • Guiding our foreign affairs
    • Providing Environmental security

    All of these have a direct impact on the way we live our lives. Becoming knowledgeable and involved in politics, in my opinion, is the natural way to improve our society and our lives. Feel free to leave comments as to why politics matter to you.

    The YouTube for Gamers! - January 11, 2016 by admin

    We are all well aware of the success of YouTube since its creation around February of 2005. Since YouTube has been such a success, there have been many spin-offs of the site recently. For those “gamers” out there, this is one of those sites you will not want to miss.

    Welcome to WeGame.com — the YouTube for gamers. By using this site, people can record in-game videos and post them for everyone to see. The site provides a desktop client for users to record their video, thus eliminating the usage of software for this process, which typically slows down computers. The client currently only works on Windows operating systems.

    The site has much of the same feel as does YouTube. You can browse the database of videos and screenshots and leave comments if you like. All in all, this looks to be a fun site that gamers can enjoy.

    A Great GMAT Online Study Guide - December 25, 2015 by admin

    For those of you out there looking for a great GMAT study guide online, look no further than here.  This study guide from 800score.com provides hundreds of pages of in depth analysis, examples, explanations, and practice questions for everything you would need to know to pass your GMAT test.

    Manage Your Money Through Yodlee - November 14, 2015 by admin

    It isn’t uncommon to make a New Year’s resolution to start saving money. An excellent way to being saving money is through a good budget. Budgets allow you to see what your spending habits are and then you can decide on where you need to cut back on some spending. Budgets take a lot of time and sometimes it’s difficult to put together a complete picture of all your finances. That has all changed now with the power of computers and the internet.

    Yodlee MoneyCenter is an online account aggregation service. Yodlee makes it easy to view a complete picture of your finances including bank accounts, investment, loans, credit card, mortgages and more. Signing up for Yodlee is free, however you must give them all of your login names and passwords so they can access your financial information and organize it for you. For example, if you give them your credit card logins they have all the information in real time off your credit card. This includes your current balance, and every transaction that you make is logged. Provided you feel safe disclosing your information, Yodlee can track and organize all of your transactions for you. The end result is real time update of all your financial information put together neatly on one page. No more logging into each bank account separately, then go to each credit card web site to log in there and check your information. It’s all on Yodlee now. I took a shot of my main page below, but I just took out my values for each.

    Now that all your finances are together, it’s easy to analyze. Since they have a record of every single transaction that was made is now in one place, it’s also easy to organize.

    Here is a list of services Yodlee can provide:

    • Spending charts and expense reports to see where your money is going.
    • Income vs. expenses categorized in any time frame you wish.
    • Portfolio performance
    • Bill paying
    • Transaction details
    • Net worth statements
    • A wide range of reminders and helpful notices.

    I will touch on some of these other services another time, but for a one stop shop in organizing your personal finances there is no better place in my opinion than Yodlee MoneyCenter.

    The Real Beginning - October 15, 2015 by admin

    You have always wondered what these moments would be like since you were a little kid. Your first day as a freshman at college, purchasing your first car, buying your first house, heck — even your first blog! At one point in our lives, all of those milestones seemed too far in the future to matter. We were all too busy playing Nintendo to think about them right? Well all of a sudden we have grown up and those moments are now.

    The above examples and many many others are what this web site is all about. In a nutshell, I will cover all the important events that a young adult goes through. So if you happen to be a young adult and you are reading this you must be thinking wow, jackpot! Well it gets better too. I also will also cover a few unimportant events too. I’ll put it like this…if it’s something you will go through in your 20s…I’ll cover it here. My master plan is to make this site an important resource to all young people who are just beginning to experience what the “real” world is all about. My secondary plan is to make coming here an enjoyable experience for all.

    So to the few people who may have stumbled across this site in its earlier phases — Welcome! I encourage you to keep visiting and to give me feedback (comments, suggestions, even criticism) on any of the posts you may read here. I am only one person and believe it or not, I don’t know everything! (yet) Hope you enjoy!

    Job Search Resources - October 8, 2015 by admin

    When looking for a job, what is the best way to search for one? Nowadays, there are many resources out there for you to look through. I have narrowed them down to three major types to look at the benefits of each. The three types are the internet, newspaper, and through networking. Lets look at the internet first.

    Looking through the internet is a great way to quickly find jobs. It is actually the means by which I found my current job as a Financial Aid Advisor. Two helpful websites I looked at were monster.com and careerbuilder.com .  You can easily search for a job specified in your area of interest, and its also a great resources to look at if you are planning on moving and new a job in a new town or city.  One of the things I have found that are not so good about some of these sites are some of the jobs are spammed, and can be very misleading.  Lots of sales jobs are posted with misleading job descriptions to get a big volume of job seekers in the door.  Make sure you research a company before you go to the interview.

    Another means of finding a job is through the classified section in your local newspaper.  Every Sunday it is a good idea to take the job section of the newspaper and look for jobs in your area.  Most list mailing or email address where you can send in your resume and cover letter.  As always you need to follow up with these, do not expect someone to call you back always.

    A third and final  excellent means to acquire a job is through networking.  If you are recently out of school, contact your classmates in your area and ask them if there are any openings where they work.  I had two job offers this way and its a great way to easily get your foot in the door if you already know someone working where you are applying.

    Using all three of these means for finding a job simultaneously will improve your chances of finding a good job in your area.

    Does Internet Poker Cheating Happen?? You Bet! - September 26, 2015 by admin

    Like lots of other people my age, I started playing poker a few years ago about the time the poker craze started. With the startup and addition of many online poker sites, I have played my share of poker on the internet. I tried a few sites putting some money in here and there and in the long run I always lost whatever I put in.

    To me, something never felt quite right playing online. The hands were never like hands I saw at a live table and at times I felt like something fishy was up. A few days ago, a friend of mine pointed me towards this article and my suspensions were confirmed. It IS possible to hack internet poker software, and its happened. Take a look at this article from msnbc.com.

    Now I’m not saying this is common online, its probably not. But I for one will never put money into any online poker site again. I don’t trust the randomness of the cards, and now it’s been proven that through hacks it is possible for another player to see your hole cards. My recommendation to people who like to play poker is stick to playing with a group of friends. That way you can be sure you are not being cheated.

    Win Money Playing Poker for Free - September 18, 2015 by admin

    So you like to play poker but don’t enjoy the risk of losing your hard earned money huh? Well I can completely agree with you there. But guess what, if it wasn’t obvious by the title of this there is a way you can win money and not have to risk any of your own.

    What I am referring to is River Chasers Poker Tour. All the information you need on this can be found at River Chasers. However I’ll give you a brief description now of what it is.

    River Chasers is a poker tournament that is held at local bars and restaurants around the east coast. It is held at several locations daily in the area you live in making it possible to play poker each night. Anyone can come and play, provided seating is available. I can only speak for the Central PA area (because that’s where I live!) but anywhere from 50-120 people show up each night, depending on the day of the week and the location. Prizes are $100 for 1st, a Hess $30 gas card for 2nd, and a hat and T-shirt for 3rd.

    Personally, I find this an excellent way to play poker which I love to do with the chance of winning some money. It’s a great way to improve your skills in live tournament style play. I’ll also add it’s a great way to meet people. A lot of people attend regular and even after the third or fourth time out you will most likely start to recognize faces.

    But for those of you looking for bigger things in your poker life don’t worry, there is more. Each night you play you have the chance to earn points through their player ranking system. Player rankings are based on the total number of players entered in each tournament. The top 30% of players at each venue earn ranking points. For example, if there are 100 players, the top 30 spots will be ranked. The 30th finisher would receive 1 point; the top finisher would receive 30 points. At the end of each quarter of the year, a Tournament of Champions is held. Entrance to this varies, based on the total number of ranked players in each region. Usually around the top 30% players per region advance. From there the top 10% of finishers from each Regional TOC will qualify to play in their Regional Championship. Top finishers at each Regional Championship will compete in the Year-End Championship. The winner of this tournament will be crowned Grand Champion and will receive our Grand Prize: a seat at the World Series of Poker Main Event!

    As you can see, River Chasers gives you the opportunity to play poker in your area just for fun, or if you are a bit more ambitious you can still win a seat at the World Series of Poker Main Event. And like I said earlier, it’s FREE to play! But some of you might be thinking well that’s great but I don’t live on the east coast. Well for starters do they offer online play. (I don’t know much information on that) However I’m sure with a little research there are tournaments similar to this held around the good old USA. So good luck to everyone out there in poker games, and maybe I’ll see one of you out there in a River Chasers tournament.

    Ten Things Expats Should Know about Irish Tax - October 11, 2013 by admin

    Ten Things Expats Should Know about Irish Tax

    It’s been a while since we talked about costs here. But I got another email during the week from someone thinking of living in Ireland and one of the things we talked about was tax.  I’ve tried not to think about tax here as I moved back just when the government started piling on income levies and other strange charges. I know, I know; great timing!

    These are some of the interesting (ahem, maybe I mean relevant) things I’ve discovered this year:

    1. The tax year is a calendar year from Jan.1st to December 31st.  Logical; thank you!
    2. Only 183 days of that are counted as making you resident for tax purposes. They have also have a system where if you are resident for 280 days over two years that you pay tax for the second year.
    3. If you’re resident in Ireland for tax purposes then you need to also pay tax here on any income earned overseas during this time.
    4. Luckily Ireland has a double-taxation deal with over 40 countries which means you don’t have to stump up in both places.
    5. You should check the details of this before arriving here as each agreement is different. Don’t just assume your Irish employer’s accountant will understand your personal situation.
    6. There is another category for people who are ‘ordinarily resident’ here. This is people who stay for three years or less – i.e. most expat contracts.  You still need to pay tax on all income earned here and overseas but not on investment properties or on work which is carried out away from Ireland.
    7. If you are employed by a company here,  they take the tax out of your salary for you. It’s called PAYE: Pay As You Earn.
    8. Self-employed people can choose to pay annually in a lump sum or set up a direct debit payment based on self-assessment.
    9. EU residents can keep their Personal Tax Credits when you come here if you earn more than 75% of your income in Ireland.
    10. You can find any other information you need at the Irish Tax website.

    Have I missed anything important?

    George Carlin Talks Stuff - October 11, 2013 by admin

    I’m feeling the urge for a late Spring Clean. Inspired by this old George Carlin set – very old, it’s from a Comic Relief gig in 1986 but it’s so true. It’s worth watching but if you’re in a rush: Carlin says we label everything we own as stuff but everyone’s else’s belongings are s***.  Painfully true.  Every time I move, I shift things from the stuff category to the other one, and throw bags away.

    Well, not just somehow – I order things online or walk into shops and buy stuff. Stuff that usually seems vital to my existence but then sits there or gets forgotten.  Living in Ireland,  a fairly materialistic country, hasn’t helped as there is no incentive not to shop here.  Everyone claims to be shopping less due to the recession as this Deloitte report says, but this is clearly a relative term. I found the Carlin video on Vagablogging where Rolf talks about how our stuff actually owns us not the other way around.

    Two questions today: Are books and DVDS stuff? And how do you deal with your stuff build-ups?

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