Joint Ventures


joint venture (JV) is a business agreement

A joint venture (JV) is a business agreement in which parties agree to develop, for a finite time, a new entity and new assets by contributing equity.

By Alla Gul (MBA)Our Contributor

A joint venture (JV) is a legal organization that takes the form of a partnership in which individuals, groups of individuals, companies, or corporations jointly undertake a transaction for mutual profit (“Joint Venture”, n.d.).

The parties agree to create a new entity by contributing equity.

Then they share in the revenues, expenses, and control of the enterprise. This paper discusses why joint ventures may be formed and what benefits may be expected when domestic and foreign companies form a venture. Then resent joint venture example is briefly illustrated.

The partnership can happen between big companies in an industry to differentiate, for example. The joint venture can occur between two small businesses that partner in order to successfully fight their bigger competitors. In addition, companies with identical products and services can also join forces “to penetrate markets they wouldn’t or couldn’t consider without investing tremendous resources” (“Joint Venturing”, n.d., p. 2). Next, a large company can decide to form a joint venture with a smaller business “in order to quickly acquire critical intellectual property, technology, or resources otherwise hard to obtain, even with plenty of cash at their disposal” (“Joint Venturing”, n.d., p. 2). To add, “There are good business and accounting reasons to create a joint venture with a company that has complementary capabilities and resources, such as distribution channels, technology, or finance” (“Joint Ventures (VS)”,  n.d.). Below are some major reasons for forming a joint venture:

Internal reasons

1.         Build on company’s strengths

2.         Spreading costs and risks

3.         Improving access to financial resources

4.         Economies of scale and advantages of size

5.         Access to new technologies and customers

6.         Access to innovative managerial practices

Competitive goals

1.         Influencing structural evolution of the industry

2.         Pre-empting competition

3.         Defensive response to blurring industry boundaries

4.         Creation of stronger competitive units

5.         Speed to market

6.         Improved agility

Strategic goals

1.         Synergies

2.         Transfer of technology/skills

3.         Diversification

(“Joint Venture”, n.d.). 

Joint ventures between companies headquartered in different countries can be particularly beneficial. First, companies may use joint ventures to gain entrance into foreign markets. For example, foreign companies form joint ventures with domestic companies that already are present in markets the foreign companies would like to enter.  Moreover, due to local regulations, some markets can only be accessed via joint venturing with a local business (“Joint Venturing”, 101, n.d., p.2). For example, China and to some extent India, require foreign companies to form joint ventures with domestic firms in order to enter a market (“Joint Venture”, n.d). Next, the foreign companies “generally bring new technologies and business practices into the joint venture, while the domestic companies already have the relationships and requisite governmental documents within the country along with being entrenched in the domestic industry”( “Joint venture”, n.d.). For example, joint ventures are common in the oil and gas industry, and are often formed between a local and foreign company. “A joint venture is often seen as a very viable business alternative in this sector, as the companies can complement their skill sets while it offers the foreign company a geographic presence” (“Joint Venture”, n.d.).

Recently the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and CAE, Canada signed an agreement to establish a joint venture company that will open a helicopter simulator training center in Bangalore, India.

The company, Helicopter Academy To Train By Simulation Of Flying (HATSOFF), will be owned equally by HAL and CAE. The training center is expected to begin operations in late 2008 by providing both civil and military helicopter pilot and maintenance training services. (“HAL”, 2007)

Questions to Answer Before You Approach a New Joint Venture Partner

Questions to Answer Before You Approach a New Joint Venture Partner.
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CAE is a world leader in providing simulation and modeling technologies and integrated training solutions for the civil aviation industry and defense forces around the globe (“About CAE”, n.d.). The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is in the list of top 100 defense companies in the world (“HAL 34th”, n.d.). Among its products are helicopters, aircrafts, advances communication and navigation equipment, and aerospace equipment (“Our Products”, n.d.). By forming the joint venture, the CAE is trying to extend its business-jet training network, to expend its distribution channels, to increase sales of its stimulators, and to capture and extend into India’s growing market (“Remarks for”, 2007,  p.3).  For the Indian partner, this joint venture provides the opportunity to differentiate, to acquire new skills and technology and to extend its marketing reach. Finally, both companies are expected to benefit from a development of a new market and from growth in revenues and profits.

To conclude, a joint venture is a strategic alliance where two or more parties form a partnership to share markets, intellectual property, assets, knowledge, and,  profits. (“Joint Venturing”, n.d., p.1).  The partnership may be formed between domestic companies or between domestic and foreign partners. When carefully planned and successfully implemented, joint ventures bring multiple benefits to parties involved

 By Alla Gul (MBA)Our Contributor


References

About CAE. CAE Inc. Retrieved September 26, 2007 from

 http://www.cae.com/www2004/About_CAE/index.shtml

HAL, Canada’s CAE ink joint venture for helicopter simulator training center. (2007).

Yahoo Business News. Retrieved September 26, 2007 from  http://in.news.yahoo.com/070926/139/6l8gn.html

HAL 34th among top 100 defense firms. Hindustan Aeronautic Limited. Retrieved

 September 26, 2007 from http://www.hal-india.com/34th.asp

Joint ventures. Cornell University Law School.  Retrieved September 26, 2007 from

 http://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/index.php/Joint_venture

Joint venture. Wikipedia. Retrieved September 24, 2007 from

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joint_venture

Joint ventures (JVs). E-coach: Sharing Capital, Technology, Human Resources, Risks

 and Rewards. Retrieved September 26, 2007 from

 http://www.1000ventures.com/business_guide/jv_main.html

Our products. Hindustan Aeronautic Limited. Retrieved September 26, 2007 from

 http://www.hal-india.com/products.asp

Remarks for first quarter fiscal year 2008 results. (2007). CAE. Retrieved September 26,

 2007 from

http://www.cae.com/www2004/Investor_Relations/PDF/2008/CAE_FY08Q1_Remarks-en.pdf

Scott Allen. Joint venturing 101. About.com- Entrepreneurs. Retrieved September 26,

 2007 from http://entrepreneurs.about.com/od/beyondstartup/a/jointventures.htm

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Why do we vote on Tuesday? ELECTION 2012: WHAT’S AT STAKE


Your-vote-countsWhy do we vote on Tuesday?

Election Day in the United States is the day set by law for the general elections of public officials. It occurs on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November.

The earliest possible date is November 2 and the latest possible date is November 8.

The next election will be held on November 6, 2012.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Election_Day_(United_States) )

A uniform date for choosing presidential electors was instituted by the Congress in 1845.

Many theories have been advanced as to why the Congress settled on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November.

The actual reasons, as shown in records of Congressional debate on the bill in December 1844, were fairly prosaic. The bill initially set the national day for choosing presidential electors on “the first Tuesday in November,” in years divisible by four (1848, 1852, etc.). But it was pointed out that in some years the period between the first Tuesday in November and the first Wednesday in December (when the electors met in their state capitals to vote) would be more than 34 days, in violation of the existing Electoral College law.

So, the bill was amended to move the national date for choosing presidential electors forward to the Tuesday after the first Monday in November, a date scheme already used in the state of New York.

In 1845, the United States was largely an agrarian society. Farmers often needed a full day to travel by horse-drawn vehicles to the county seat to vote.

Tuesday was established as Election Day because it did not interfere with the Biblical Sabbath or with market day, which was on Wednesday in many towns.
November was chosen because the economy was driven by farmers

“There’s religious, economic and political reasons we vote on Tuesday,” said Mower county auditor/treasurer Doug Groh. “It all stems from 1845.”

It was the year James Polk became our 11th president and Texas became our 28th state.

“Horse and buggy days, and the county seat was the polling place,” Groh told us.

“A lot of people might have to travel and stay overnight to vote,” added Austin city clerk Lucy Johnson. And since Sunday was a day of rest:

“They allowed Monday to travel to the county seat to vote, so then they voted on Tuesday,” Groh explained.

“November was their first slow month,” said Johnson.

And there was a safe political reason for keeping the vote in November.

“It’s far enough from April 15th when you last paid taxes you kind of forgot, and you haven’t started to think about paying taxes again on April 15th to influence your vote,” Johnson explained.

(Source: http://kaaltv.com/article/stories/s2817722.shtml )

seal-of-the-president-of-the-united-states

Seal of the President of the United States

Some activists oppose this date on the grounds that it decreases voter turnout because most citizens work on Tuesdays, and advocate making Election Day a federal holiday or allowing voters to cast their ballots over two or more days. The United Auto Workers union has negotiated making Election Day a holiday for its workers at the U.S. domestic auto manufacturers.

Many states have implemented early voting, which allows the voters to cast ballots, in many cases up to a month early. Also, all states have some kind of absentee ballot system. The state of Oregon, for example, performs all major elections through postal voting that are sent to voters several weeks before Election Day. Some companies will let their employees come in late or leave early on Election Day to allow them an opportunity to get to their precinct and vote.

Move Election Day to the weekend…

Soboroff and Israel say Tuesday voting bars access to democracy and keeps America’s voter turnout chronically low. They point to census survey data showing that 1 in 4 people says he’s too busy or his schedule doesn’t allow him to get to the polls.

Their solution? Move Election Day to the weekend. Israel has been introducing and reintroducing a bill to move voting to the weekend.

But moving poll day turns out to be no easy task. The weekend voting bill keeps dying in committee. And earlier this year, when the Government Accountability Office talked to elections officials about how weekend voting would work, they came up with a list of logistical difficulties, from keeping equipment safe overnight to recruiting poll workers to work the weekend. There’s also, of course, no guarantee that moving Election Day would change voter turnout.

Then there’s the simple fact that Americans have gotten used to voting on Tuesday. “We’re a very traditional county, and that became a tradition in a lot of ways,” says Ritchie. “That’s the way people were accustomed to doing it, people could count on it, you could set your calendars on it.”

(Source: http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2012/10/23/162484410/why-are-elections-on-tuesdays )

Need To Know by PBS.

What’s at Stake reviews top campaign issues and considers how the outcome of the election could impact voters’ lives.

What’s at Stake: PBS Election 2012 From jobs and taxes to climate change, PBS presents an in-depth look at the issues


Check this video out – What’s at Stake: PBS Election 2012

Episode: What’s at Stake: PBS Election 2012

What’s at Stake leads viewers through issues at the center of this year’s campaigns: jobs and tax policy, entitlements and debt, healthcare, and foreign policy. Frontline, PBS Newshour,
Need to Know and Washington Week in Review contribute their special reporting and analysis.

Latest news One Day before Election Day!

“WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney make a frenetic dash to a series of crucial swing states on Monday, delivering their final arguments to voters on the last day of an extraordinarily close race for the White House.

After a long, bitter and expensive campaign, national polls show Obama and Romney are essentially deadlocked ahead of Tuesday’s election, although Obama has a slight advantage in the eight or nine battleground states that will decide the winner.”


“Romney, who would be the first Mormon president, has centered his campaign pitch on his own experience as a business leader at a private equity fund and said it made him uniquely suited to create jobs.

Obama’s campaign fired back with ads criticizing Romney’s experience and portraying the multimillionaire as out of touch with everyday Americans.”
(Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-romney-sprint-unpredictable-campaign-finish-021401657.html)

HOW A MUZHIK FED TWO OFFICIALS by M.Y. Saltykov


 

saltykov-schedrin

How a Muzhik Fed Two Officials (Повесть о том, как один мужик двух генералов прокормил, 1869)

How a Muzhik (Man) Fed Two Officials (Повесть о том, как один мужик двух генералов прокормил, 1869)

BY Mikhail Evgrafovich Saltykov-Shchedrin
(1826–1889) [N.Shchedrin]

Once upon a time there were two Officials. They were both empty-headed, and so they found themselves one day suddenly transported to an uninhabited isle, as if on a magic carpet.

They had passed their whole life in a Government Department, where records were kept; had been born there, bred there, grown old there, and consequently hadn’t the least understanding for anything outside of the Department; and the only words they knew were: “With assurances of the highest esteem, I am your humble servant.”

But the Department was abolished, and as the services of the two
Officials were no longer needed, they were given their freedom. So the
retired Officials migrated to Podyacheskaya Street in St. Petersburg.
Each had his own home, his own cook and his pension.

Waking up on the uninhabited isle, they found themselves lying under the same cover. At first, of course, they couldn’t understand what had happened to them, and they spoke as if nothing extraordinary had taken place.

“What a peculiar dream I had last night, your Excellency,” said the one Official. “It seemed to me as if I were on an uninhabited isle.”

Scarcely had he uttered the words, when he jumped to his feet. The other Official also jumped up.

“Good Lord, what does this mean! Where are we?” they cried out in astonishment.

They felt each other to make sure that they were no longer dreaming, and finally convinced themselves of the sad reality.

Before them stretched the ocean, and behind them was a little spot of earth, beyond which the ocean stretched again. They began to cry—the first time since their Department had been shut down.

They looked at each other, and each noticed that the other was clad in nothing but his night shirt with his order hanging about his neck.

“We really should be having our coffee now,” observed the one Official. Then he bethought himself again of the strange situation he was in and a second time fell to weeping.

“What are we going to do now?” he sobbed. “Even supposing we were to draw up a report, what good would that do?”

“You know what, your Excellency,” replied the other Official, “you go to the east and I will go to the west. Toward evening we will come back here again and, perhaps, we shall have found something.”

BEST RUSSIAN SHORT STORIES

“Everything is subordinated to two main requirements—humanitarian ideals and fidelity to life. This is the secret of the marvellous simplicity of Russian literary art.”—THOMAS SELTZER.

They started to ascertain which was the east and which was the west. They recalled that the head of their Department had once said to them, “If you want to know where the east is, then turn your face to the north, and the east will be on your right.” But when they tried to find out which was the north, they turned to the right and to the left and looked around on all sides. Having spent their whole life in the Department of Records, their efforts were all in vain.

“To my mind, your Excellency, the best thing to do would be for you to go to the right and me to go to the left,” said one Official, who had served not only in the Department of Records, but had also been teacher of handwriting in the School for Reserves, and so was a little bit cleverer.

So said, so done. The one Official went to the right. He came upon trees, bearing all sorts of fruits. Gladly would he have plucked an apple, but they all hung so high that he would have been obliged to climb up. He tried to climb up in vain. All he succeeded in doing was tearing his night shirt. Then he struck upon a brook. It was swarming with fish.

“Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had all this fish in Podyacheskaya Street!” he thought, and his mouth watered. Then he entered woods and found partridges, grouse and hares.

“Good Lord, what an abundance of food!” he cried. His hunger was going up tremendously.

But he had to return to the appointed spot with empty hands. He found the other Official waiting for him.

“Well, Your Excellency, how went it? Did you find anything?”

“Nothing but an old number of the Moscow Gazette, not another thing.”

The Officials lay down to sleep again, but their empty stomachs gave them no rest They were partly robbed of their sleep by the thought of who was now enjoying their pension, and partly by the recollection of the fruit, fishes, partridges, grouse and hares that they had seen during the day.

“The human pabulum in its original form flies, swims and grows on trees. Who would have thought it your Excellency?” said the one Official.

“To be sure,” rejoined the other Official. “I, too, must admit that I had imagined that our breakfast rolls, came into the world just as they appear on the table.”

“From which it is to be deduced that if we want to eat a pheasant, we must catch it first, kill it, pull its feathers and roast it. But how’s that to be done?”

“Yes, how’s that to be done?” repeated the other Official.

They turned silent and tried again to fall asleep, but their hunger scared sleep away. Before their eyes swarmed flocks of pheasants and ducks, herds of porklings, and they were all so juicy, done so tenderly and garnished so deliciously with olives, capers and pickles.

“I believe I could devour my own boots now,” said the one Official.

“Gloves, are not bad either, especially if they have been born quite mellow,” said the other Official.

The two Officials stared at each other fixedly. In their glances gleamed an evil-boding fire, their teeth chattered and a dull groaning issued from their breasts. Slowly they crept upon each other and suddenly they burst into a fearful frenzy. There was a yelling and groaning, the rags flew about, and the Official who had been teacher of handwriting bit off his colleague’s order and swallowed it. However, the sight of blood brought them both back to their senses.

“God help us!” they cried at the same time. “We certainly don’t mean to eat each other up. How could we have come to such a pass as this? What evil genius is making sport of us?”

“We must, by all means, entertain each other to pass the time away, otherwise there will be murder and death,” said the, one Official.

“You begin,” said the other.

“Can you explain why it is that the sun first rises and then sets? Why isn’t it the reverse?”

“Aren’t you a funny, man, your Excellency? You get up first, then you go to your office and work there, and at night you lie down to sleep.”

“But why can’t one assume the opposite, that is, that one goes to, bed, sees all sorts of dream figures, and then gets up?”

“Well, yes, certainly. But when I was still an Official, I always thought this way: ‘Now it is; dawn, then it will be day, then will come supper, and finally will come the time to go to bed.'”

The word “supper” recalled that incident in the day’s doings, and the thought of it made both Officials melancholy, so that the conversation came to a halt.

“A doctor once told me that human beings can sustain themselves for a long time on their own juices,” the one Official began again.

“What does that mean?”

“It is quite simple. You see, one’s own juices generate other juices, and these in their turn still other juices, and so it goes on until finally all the juices are consumed.”

“And then what happens?”

“Then food has to be taken into the system again.”

“The devil!”

No matter what topic the Officials chose, the conversation invariably reverted to the subject of eating; which only increased their appetite more and more. So they decided to give up talking altogether, and, recollecting the Moscow Gazette that the one of them had found, they picked it up and began to read eagerly.
BANQUET GIVEN BY THE MAYOR

“The table was set for one hundred persons. The magnificence of it exceeded all expectations. The remotest provinces were represented at this feast of the gods by the costliest gifts. The golden sturgeon from Sheksna and the silver pheasant from the Caucasian woods held a rendezvous with strawberries so seldom to be had in our latitude in winter…”

“The devil! For God’s sake, stop reading, your Excellency. Couldn’t you find something else to read about?” cried the other Official in sheer desperation. He snatched the paper from his colleague’s hands, and started to read something else.

“Our correspondent in Tula informs us that yesterday a sturgeon was found in the Upa (an event which even the oldest inhabitants cannot recall, and all the more remarkable since they recognised the former police captain in this sturgeon). This was made the occasion for giving a banquet in the club. The prime cause of the banquet was served in a large wooden platter garnished with vinegar pickles. A bunch of parsley stuck out of its mouth. Doctor P—— who acted as toast-master saw to it that everybody present got a piece of the sturgeon. The sauces to go with it were unusually varied and delicate—”

“Permit me, your Excellency, it seems to me you are not so careful either in the selection of reading matter,” interrupted the first Official, who secured the Gazette again and started to read:

“One of the oldest inhabitants of Viatka has discovered a new and highly original recipe for fish soup; A live codfish (lota vulgaris) is taken and beaten with a rod until its liver swells up with anger…”

The Officials’ heads drooped. Whatever their eyes fell upon had something to do with eating. Even their own thoughts were fatal. No matter how much they tried to keep their minds off beefsteak and the like, it was all in vain; their fancy returned invariably, with irresistible force, back to that for which they were so painfully yearning.

Suddenly an inspiration came to the Official who had once taught handwriting.

“I have it!” he cried delightedly. “What do you say to this, your
Excellency? What do you say to our finding a muzhik?”

“A muzhik, your Excellency? What sort of a muzhik?”

“Why a plain ordinary muzhik. A muzhik like all other muzhiks. He would get the breakfast rolls for us right away, and he could also catch partridges and fish for us.”

“Hm, a muzhik. But where are we to fetch one from, if there is no muzhik here?”

“Why shouldn’t there be a muzhik here? There are muzhiks everywhere. All one has to do is hunt for them. There certainly must be a muzhik hiding here somewhere so as to get out of working.”

This thought so cheered the Officials that they instantly jumped up to go in search of a muzhik.

For a long while they wandered about on the island without the desired result, until finally a concentrated smell of black bread and old sheep skin assailed their nostrils and guided them in the right direction. There under a tree was a colossal muzhik lying fast asleep with his hands under his head. It was clear that to escape his duty to work he had impudently withdrawn to this island. The indignation of the Officials knew no bounds.

“What, lying asleep here you lazy-bones you!” they raged at him, “It is nothing to you that there are two Officials here who are fairly perishing of hunger. Up, forward, march, work.”

The Muzhik rose and looked at the two severe gentlemen standing in front of him. His first thought was to make his escape, but the Officials held him fast.

He had to submit to his fate. He had to work.

First he climbed up on a tree and plucked several dozen of the finest apples for the Officials. He kept a rotten one for himself. Then he turned up the earth and dug out some potatoes. Next he started a fire with two bits of wood that he rubbed against each other. Out of his own hair he made a snare and caught partridges. Over the fire, by this time burning brightly, he cooked so many kinds of food that the question arose in the Officials’ minds whether they shouldn’t give some to this idler.

Beholding the efforts of the Muzhik, they rejoiced in their hearts. They had already forgotten how the day before they had nearly been perishing of hunger, and all they thought of now was: “What a good thing it is to be an Official. Nothing bad can ever happen to an Official.”

“Are you satisfied, gentlemen?” the lazy Muzhik asked.

“Yes, we appreciate your industry,” replied the Officials.

“Then you will permit me to rest a little?”

“Go take a little rest, but first make a good strong cord.”

The Muzhik gathered wild hemp stalks, laid them in water, beat them and broke them, and toward evening a good stout cord was ready. The Officials took the cord and bound the Muzhik to a tree, so that he should not run away. Then they laid themselves to sleep.

Thus day after day passed, and the Muzhik became so skilful that he could actually cook soup for the Officials in his bare hands. The Officials had become round and well-fed and happy. It rejoiced them that here they needn’t spend any money and that in the meanwhile their pensions were accumulating in St. Petersburg.

“What is your opinion, your Excellency,” one said to the other after breakfast one day, “is the Story of the Tower of Babel true? Don’t you think it is simply an allegory?”

“By no means, your Excellency, I think it was something that really happened. What other explanation is there for the existence of so many different languages on earth?”

“Then the Flood must really have taken place, too?”

“Certainly, else; how would you explain the existence of Antediluvian animals? Besides, the Moscow Gazette says——”

They made search for the old number of the Moscow Gazette, seated themselves in the shade, and read the whole sheet from beginning to end. They read of festivities in Moscow, Tula, Penza and Riazan, and strangely enough felt no discomfort at the description of the delicacies served.

There is no saying how long this life might have lasted. Finally, however, it began to bore the Officials. They often thought of their cooks in St. Petersburg, and even shed a few tears in secret.

“I wonder how it looks in Podyacheskaya Street now, your Excellency,” one of them said to the other.

“Oh, don’t remind me of it, your Excellency. I am pining away with homesickness.”

“It is very nice here. There is really no fault to be found with this place, but the lamb longs for its mother sheep. And it is a pity, too, for the beautiful uniforms.”

“Yes, indeed, a uniform of the fourth class is no joke. The gold embroidery alone is enough to make one dizzy.”

Now they began to importune the Muzhik to find some way of getting them back to Podyacheskaya Street, and strange to say, the Muzhik even knew where Podyacheskaya Street was. He had once drunk beer and mead there, and as the saying goes, everything had run down his beard, alas, but nothing into his mouth. The Officials rejoiced and said: “We are Officials from Podyacheskaya Street.”

“And I am one of those men—do you remember?—who sit on a scaffolding hung by ropes from the roofs and paint the outside walls. I am one of those who crawl about on the roofs like flies. That is what I am,” replied the Muzhik.

The Muzhik now pondered long and heavily on how to give great pleasure to his Officials, who had been so gracious to him, the lazy-bones, and had not scorned his work. And he actually succeeded in constructing a ship. It was not really a ship, but still it was a vessel, that would carry them across the ocean close to Podyacheskaya Street.

“Now, take care, you dog, that you don’t drown us,” said the
Officials, when they saw the raft rising and falling on the waves.

“Don’t be afraid. We muzhiks are used to this,” said the Muzhik, making all the preparations for the journey. He gathered swan’s-down and made a couch for his two Officials, then he crossed himself and rowed off from shore.

How frightened the Officials were on the way, how seasick they were during the storms, how they scolded the coarse Muzhik for his idleness, can neither be told nor described. The Muzhik, however, just kept rowing on and fed his Officials on herring. At last, they caught sight of dear old Mother Neva. Soon they were in the glorious Catherine Canal, and then, oh joy! they struck the grand Podyacheskaya Street. When the cooks saw their Officials so well-fed, round and so happy, they rejoiced immensely. The Officials drank coffee and rolls, then put on their uniforms and drove to the Pension Bureau. How much money they collected there is another thing that can neither be told nor described. Nor was the Muzhik forgotten. The Officials sent a glass of whiskey out to him and five kopeks. Now, Muzhik, rejoice.

 

Works by this author published before January 1, 1923 are in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.
Note:
Mujik
or Muzhik refers to a Russian peasant, usually from pre-1917 Imperial Russia. The term connotes a certain degree of poverty, as most mujiks were serfs before the 1861 agricultural reforms. After that date, serfs were given parcels of land to work, and became free peasants. [thx Wikipedia]

 

History of Income Tax in the United States


History of Income Tax in the United StatesThe history of income tax in the United States is also a study in irony.
As an English colony, the American Revolution began with the slogan of “taxation without representation is tyranny.” Today, we have plenty of representation, but the tax burden is heavier and very fluid.

The concept of taxing income is a modern innovation and presupposes several things: a money economy, reasonably accurate accounts, a common understanding of receipts, expenses and profits, and an orderly society with reliable records. For most of the history of civilization, these preconditions did not exist, and taxes were based on other factors. Taxes on wealth, social position, and ownership of the means of production (typically land and slaves) were all common.

A Brief History of Income Tax in the United States

In the Beginning

As a new nation, the United States Constitution becomes the centerpiece of government in this country with each colony adopting it by 1787. One of the provisions of the Constitution allows the federal government to tax the people as it sees fit. Pennsylvania was the first to object to a tax.

Pennsylvania was the first to object to a tax.Originally, any tax proposal would fund the daily obligations of running a central governing body for the good of the nation. Congress would establish a federal individual income tax in 1861 to raise funds to support the Civil War effort.

They let that federal income tax expire in 1872 and soon came to the reality that funding the government was a top priority and that each citizen must participate in that effort.

The implementation of an initial federal income tax was not lasting as the Supreme Court votes it unconstitutional in 1894.
Congress did adopt and enforce the corporate income tax in 1909 while, at the same time, beginning talks about a Constitutional amendment to establish a federal income tax.

The Sixteenth Amendment

Congress approves and adopts this amendment in 1913 and the annual collection of an individual income tax begins. People with income above $500,000 pay the highest income tax rate of 7%.
In 1914, the Bureau of Internal Revenue presents the first Form 1040 even as members of Congress were vocal about the fact that the form was too complex.

Over the next sixty years, the income tax rate gradually rose to a record high of 94% and drops to 80%, where it settles until the late 1960s. When it began, the income tax in the United States was grossly unfair. Yet, over the years, fixing it only made it grossly unfair, complex, arbitrary and corrupt.

It was under President Howard Taft that the constitutional amendment legalizing a personal income tax and a corporate income tax came into being.
Taft’s proposal was brilliant, ahead of its time and became the law in 1913 as his term was ending.
President Woodrow Wilson and a solid Democratic Congress were prompt to enact a personal income tax.

A Two-Tax Dilemma

Deductions from income, a feature of the first federal personal income tax remains to this day. It reduces taxable income by the amount of the deductions. The corporate income tax, a temporary setup, remains in effect to this day allowing the upper class, who own businesses and optimize their riches, to use the two taxes to their advantage.

The lawyers and accountants, working within the system, were capable of finding creative legal methods to utilize the two systems to the client’s advantage. Congress spent many hours with income tax reform to outlaw or regulate these loophole advantages. While its goal was admirable, they only made the tax code more cumbersome.

One consequence of keeping the corporate and personal income tax separate was public accusation of unfair practices.

The rich are not paying their fair share to support the government and its infamous budget.

Internal Revenue Service

History of Income Tax in the United States

A Brief History of Income Tax in the United States

During the mid-to-late 1950s, the Bureau of Internal Revenue became the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Its Commissioner and Chief Counsel are appointments made by the President and brought to the Senate for confirmation.

Forty years later, the IRS Restructure and Reform Act brought a reorganization meant to resemble an organization in the private sector. The new model was one of customer service grouping customers with similar needs together.
April 15th is Tax Day, although it was not always the deadline for filing the individual income tax.

The IRS Mission
Provide America’s taxpayers top quality service by helping them understand and meet their tax responsibilities and enforce the law with integrity and fairness to all.

This mission statement describes our role and the public’s expectation about how we should perform that role.

  • In the United States, the Congress passes tax laws and requires taxpayers to comply.
  • The taxpayer’s role is to understand and meet his or her tax obligations.
  • The IRS role is to help the large majority of compliant taxpayers with the tax law, while ensuring that the minority who are unwilling to comply pay their fair share.

income tax in usaRevenue and Expense Precipice

The accounting system for the balance of incoming revenue and outgoing expenses suffers abandonment in favor of limitless spending and then borrowing to finance spending. Income tax monies became bailouts for large companies. These companies are so vital to the economy that we could not allow them to fail.

The 10-year tax breaks from President Bush’s stimulus packages are on extension for one or more years. With the advent of a new presidency, income tax reform is more than just a possibility.
The United States’ debt ceiling reaches a new height almost everyday and revenues cannot possibly sustain the growth of this debt.
A new world order is emerging and the history of income tax in the United States is about to acquire a new chapter.

What is SOPA? What is PROTECT IP? How SOPA and PIPA might affect you?


What is SOPA?

How SOPA would affect you?

SOPA and PIPA would censor the Web

SOPA and PIPA wouldn’t stop piracy

The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), also known as House Bill 3261 or H.R. 3261, is a bill that was introduced in the United States House of Representatives on October 26, 2011, by House Judiciary Committee Chair Representative Lamar S. Smith (R-TX) and a bipartisan group of 12 initial co-sponsors. The bill, if made law, would expand the ability of U.S. law enforcement and copyright holders to fight online trafficking in copyrighted intellectual property and counterfeit goods.

Presented to the House Judiciary Committee, it builds on the similar PRO-IP Act of 2008 and the corresponding Senate bill, the PROTECT IP Act.

The originally proposed bill would allow the U.S. Department of Justice, as well as copyright holders, to seek court orders against websites accused of enabling or facilitating copyright infringement.

Depending on who makes the request, the court order could include barring online advertising networks and payment facilitators from doing business with the allegedly infringing website, barring search engines from linking to such sites, and requiring Internet service providers to block access to such sites. The bill would make unauthorized streaming of copyrighted content a crime, with a maximum penalty of five years in prison for ten such infringements within six months. The bill also gives immunity to Internet services that voluntarily take action against websites dedicated to infringement, while making liable for damages any copyright holder who knowingly misrepresents that a website is dedicated to infringement.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stop_Online_Piracy_Act

What is PIPA?

How PROTECT IP Act would affect you?

The PROTECT IP Act (Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 or PIPA), also known as Senate Bill 968 or S. 968, is a proposed law with the stated goal of giving the US government and copyright holders additional tools to curb access to “rogue websites dedicated to infringing or counterfeit goods”, especially those registered outside the U.S.

The bill was introduced on May 12, 2011, by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and 11 bipartisan co-sponsors.

The Congressional Budget Office estimated that implementation of the bill would cost the federal government $47 million through 2016, to cover enforcement costs and the hiring and training of 22 new special agents and 26 support staff.

The Senate Judiciary Committee passed the bill, but Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) placed a hold on it.

…. for more details visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PROTECT_IP_Act

How PIPA would affect you?

Protect IP Act Breaks the Internet

Protect IP Act Breaks the Internet

The bill defines infringement as distribution of illegal copies, counterfeit goods, or anti-digital rights management technology. Infringement exists if “facts or circumstances suggest [the site] is used, primarily as a means for engaging in, enabling, or facilitating the activities described.”
The bill says that it does not alter existing substantive trademark or copyright law.

The bill provides for “enhancing enforcement against rogue websites operated and registered overseas” and authorizes the United States Department of Justice to seek a court order in rem against websites dedicated to infringing activities, if through due diligence, an individual owner or operator cannot be located.

The bill requires the Attorney General to serve notice to the defendant.

Once the court issues an order, it could be served on financial transaction providers, Internet advertising services, Internet service providers, and information location tools to require them to stop financial transactions with the rogue site and remove links to it.

The term “information location tool” is borrowed from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and is understood to refer to search engines but could cover other sites that link to content.

The Protect IP Act says that an “information location tool shall take technically feasible and reasonable measures, as expeditiously as possible, to remove or disable access to the Internet site associated with the domain name set forth in the order”. In addition, it must delete all hyperlinks to the offending “Internet site”.Source:PROTECT IP Act of 2011, S. 968, 112th Cong. § 3(d)(2)(D); “Text of S. 968,” Govtrack.us. May 26, 2011. Retrieved June 23, 2011. Bill Text – Protect IP Act

Nonauthoritative domain name servers would be ordered to take technically feasible and reasonable steps to prevent the domain name from resolving to the IP address of a website that had been found by the court to be “dedicated to infringing activities.”The website could still be reached by its IP address, but links or users that used the website’s domain name would not reach it. Search engines—such as Google—would be ordered to “(i) remove or disable access to the Internet site associated with the domain name set forth in the [court] order; or (ii) not serve a hypertext link to such Internet site.”

What people are saying about about SOPA and PIPA?

Members of Congress are trying to do the right thing by going after pirates and counterfeiters but SOPA and PIPA are the wrong way to do it.

1. SOPA and PIPA would censor the Web

The U.S. http://youtu.be/Qcbg29Q0DhAgovernment could order the blocking of sites using methods similar to those employed by China. Among other things, search engines could be forced to delete entire websites from their search results. That’s why 41 human rights organizations and 110 prominent law professors have expressed grave concerns about the bills.

2. SOPA and PIPA would be job-killers because they would create a new era of uncertainty for American business

Law-abiding U.S. internet companies would have to monitor everything users link to or upload or face the risk of time-consuming litigation. That’s why AOL, EBay, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Mozilla, Twitter, Yahoo and Zynga wrote a letter to Congress saying these bills “pose a serious risk to our industry’s continued track record of innovation and job-creation.” It’s also why 55 of America’s most successful venture capitalists expressed concern that PIPA “would stifle investment in Internet services, throttle innovation, and hurt American competitiveness”. More than 204 entrepreneurs told Congress that PIPA and SOPA would “hurt economic growth and chill innovation”.

3. SOPA and PIPA wouldn’t stop piracy


read more: https://www.google.com/landing/takeaction/sopa-pipa/

Protect IP Act Breaks the Internet

When I found out Fight for the Future needed help with their campaign against a new bill called PROTECT-IP, I had to take a little time away from Everything is a Remix Part 4 and produce the video above. PROTECT-IP is the latest piece of legislation aiming to chip away at your online rights in the name of protecting the entertainment industry’s business model. It’s legislation that won’t work, will give us yet more lawsuits, and will make the net worse.

Whether you lean right and hate business regulation, lean left and hate censorship, or lean neither way but hate useless legislation, PROTECT-IP is a bill everyone should oppose. I encourage you to head over to Fight For the Future and contact congress.

More here: http://fightforthefuture.org/pipa

So, it is up to you to decide support it or not.

Call your Senators today.

The Internet is a thriving ecosystem that powers our economy and our society. PIPA and SOPA threaten the web.

Join Our Censorship Protest!

Cool Visualization Of Facebook Users


Where Facebook Is Not Popular Yet?

Visualizing Friendships

by Paul Butler on Monday, December 13, 2010 at 5:16pm

… When the data is the social graph of 500 million people, there are a lot of lenses through which you can view it.

One that piqued my curiosity was the locality of friendship. I was interested in seeing how geography and political borders affected where people lived relative to their friends. I wanted a visualization that would show which cities had a lot of friendships between them …

Facebook is one of the largest websites in the world, with more than 500 million monthly users. The site was started in 2004 by founder and CEO <!—->Mark Zuckerberg when he was an undergraduate student at Harvard.

Since September 2006, anyone over the age of 13 with a valid e-mail address can join Facebook. Users can add “friends” and send them messages, post announcements, and update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves.

The name of the service stems from the colloquial name for the book given to students at the start of the academic year by university administrations in the US. The intention of the book is to help students to get to know each other better.

Facebook is huge in North America, Europe, India, and Indonesia, but is almost unused in big swaths of Asia and North Africa.

Artist Ian Wojtowicz put together this graphic based on Facebook’s <!—->map of connections combined with NASA’s pictures of the earth at night. He then took the places where Facebook was inactive, pinpointed them to specific cities on the <!–NASA–>NASA map, and highlighted them in yellow.
The map was highlighted by Flowing Data earlier today.

Here’s the whole world.
Dark areas are where Facebook is most prominent, where yellow cities are places where few people use Facebook:

Facebook NASA mashup

Sources of Information:

Image: Ian Wojtowicz

http://station.woj.com/2011/07/unfacebook-world.html

The original Facebook blog post explaining the visualization in more detail and here’s a link to a high res version of the image.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facebook

Email Marketing Best Practices


Did you know?  Researchers estimate that United States firms alone spent US $600 million on email marketing in 2010.

So it big Market for Email marketing if you know how to use it.

What is Email Marketing?

By Wikipedia: Email marketing is a form of direct marketing which uses electronic mail as a means of communicating commercial or fund-raising messages to an audience. In its broadest sense, every email sent to a potential or current customer could be considered email marketing. However, the term is usually used to refer to:

  • sending email messages with the purpose of enhancing the relationship of a merchant with its current or previous customers, to encourage customer loyalty and repeat business,
  • sending email messages with the purpose of acquiring new customers or convincing current customers to purchase something immediately,
  • adding advertisements to email messages sent by other companies to their customers, and
  • sending email messages over the Internet, as email did and does exist outside the Internet

Advantages of Email Marketing

Email marketing (on the Internet) is popular with companies for several reasons:

  • An exact return on investment can be tracked (“track to basket”) and has proven to be high when done properly. Email marketing is often reported as second only to search marketing as the most effective online marketing tactic.
  • Advertisers can reach substantial numbers of email subscribers who have opted in (i.e., consented) to receive email communications on subjects of interest to them.
  • Over half of Internet users check or send email on a typical day.
  • Email is popular with digital marketers, rising an estimated 15% in 2009 to £292m in the UK.

Disadvantages of Email Marketing

A report issued by the email services company Return Path, as of mid-2008 email deliverability is still an issue for legitimate marketers. According to the report, legitimate email servers averaged a delivery rate of 56%; twenty percent of the messages were rejected, and eight percent were filtered.

Companies considering the use of an email marketing program must make sure that their program does not violate spam laws such as the United States’ Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act (CAN-SPAM), the European Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003, or their Internet service provider’s acceptable use policy.

Important tips for anyone managing the email marketing.
1. Send emails to persons who have requested to receive them.

2. Include content relevant to the type of content the person has requested.

3. Be consistent with your sending frequency.  Pick a schedule, whether it is weekly, biweekly,
or monthly and as often as you can stick to that schedule.

4. In most cases it is best to send business to business emails Tuesday through Thursday. We’ve found that the best
times of the day to send are just after the start of the day around 9:30am or just after lunch around 1:30pm. It
is best to avoid sending business to business emails after 4pm or on weekends.

5. In most cases it is best to send business to consumer emails either between 5pm and 8pm Tuesday through Thursday or between Friday evening and Sunday afternoon.

6. To improve deliverability, add a message at the top of your emails that says something like: “To ensure receipt of
our emails, please add you@mycompany.com to your Address Book.”

7. Make the From Name for your messages either your company name or the name of a person at your company.
Once you choose a From Name, keep it consistent. During the split second decision subscribers make whether
to open your email, the most important factor in their decision is whether the From Name is familiar to them.

8. Be sure to include both a plain text and an HTML version of your newsletter.   If you don’t
include a plain text message, around 5% of your recipients will see a message with nothing in it.

9. Don’t use all caps or multiple exclamation marks within your subject line or body. Doing this will trigger spam
filters.

10. Build your list at every opportunity you have. If you have a retail location, add a point- of-sale sign-up form. At conferences or events, bring a paper sign-up form or have a laptop with a sign- up form set up and available for interested parties. Finally, add your newsletter signup form to every page on your web site.

Email Marketing Terms.

1. ROI (Return on Investment) – Your ROI is the measure of the profit you make and/or costs saved at your business. For your email marketing campaigns you calculate cost of sending email plus time.

ROI = [(Payback – Investment)/Investment)]*100

So if you made $780 on your email campaign, your time was worth $50 to create it and it costs $15 to send it, it would look like this:

(($780 – $65)/$65)*100 = 1100% ROI (which is really good!)

If you want to take it a step further subtract your cost of your products or services as well.

2. Open Rate – Your open rate is simply the number recipients who opened your HTML emails. It is typically measured as a percentage of the total number of emails sent, although calculation methods may differ. The open rate is considered a useful metric for judging response to an email campaign but it should be noted that open rates for text emails can’t be calculated AND some email clients don’t display images as a default which would under report your total number of opens.

3. Above the Fold – The bottom of your browser window or the bottom of your email before you have to start scrolling is commonly referred to as the “fold”. These viewable areas should be where your most important information should be located since it’s the first thing your viewer will see.

4. Preview Pane – Email programs like Microsoft Outlook, Entourage, and Mac Mail allow users to view email through a preview pane before your recipient clicks to open. The preview pane is important to bear in mind when composing the opening lines of an email so you can get your recipient’s attention fast.

5. Copy – Your copy is simply the text of the email you write.

6. Hosted Email – A hosted version of an email allows users to view the email message as a web page, ensuring that all formatting remains intact. VerticalResponse does this for you for free you just need to include the “hosted version” link. Hosted versions of your email are also great for you to send your Twitter and Facebook followers to when you launch your campaign.

7. Spoofing – Email spoofing involves forging a sender’s address on email messages. It can be used by malicious individuals to mislead email recipients into reading and responding to deceptive mail. These fake messages can jeopardize the online privacy of consumers and damage the reputation of the companies purported to have sent the messages. Spoofed email often contains phishing scams. VerticalResponse doesn’t allow for this in our systems.

8. Phishing – In a phishing scam, a spammer, posing as a trusted party such as a bank or reputable online vendor, sends email messages directing recipients to web sites that appear to be official but are in reality fraudulent. Visitors to these web sites are asked to disclose personal information, such as credit card numbers, or to purchase counterfeit or pirated products.

9. Targeting – Targeting gives you the ability to deliver emails to those most likely to respond to your emails, based on a variety of things like their geographic, demographic, psychographic and behavioral information.

10. Whitelists – Whitelists are usually created by an ISP (internet service provider) and are made up of commercial emailers (including email service providers — ESPs) who have been approved to send email through their gates. The ISP requires a list of IP (internet protocol) addresses that email will be sent from, and in some cases a test period where the commercial emailer will be approved or rejected. VerticalResponse is on all available whitelists.

11. Web Friendly Fonts – Almost all web browsers are capable of displaying four primary fonts properly: Times, Arial, Helvetica, and Verdana, as well as their variants (Arial Narrow, Times New Roman, etc.) If a web developer decides to stray from one of these fonts he or she risks browser compatibility problems and the prospect that their pages may render inaccurately when viewed through certain web browsers.

Places to Include Information on How to Subscribe to Your Newsletter
6. On customer satisfaction surveys
7. On product shipping forms
8. In confirmation or transaction emails
9. On credit card receipts
10. On warranty and product registration cards
11. On Invoices
12. Within articles
13. Within press releases
14. On trade show lead forms
15. On sweepstakes entry forms
16. On shopping cart order forms
17. Company publications