March 28, 2019

Many of the changes for small businesses in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) went into effect last year, and initial reports suggest that small business owners are seeing larger returns, despite the average taxpayer generally receiving a smaller refund.

The biggest impact of the TCJA is the introduction of a new major tax deduction. Available for qualified business owners at the head of "pass-through" organizations, such as sole proprietorship, S-corporations and partnerships, the tax break allows for the deduction of 20 percent of qualified income.

While that’s great news for many small businesses, there are some major caveats.

  •  According to the IRS, small business owners who file as single individuals can only take the deduction if their taxable income is less than $157,500. Those who are married and file jointly must have income less than $315,000. These limits are in place regardless of which industry the business operates under.
  •  “Specified Services Trades or Businesses” (SSTB) that deal "in the fields of health, law, accounting, actuarial science, performing arts, consulting, athletics, financial services" and other similar fields are unable to take the deduction if their income as a single filer exceeds $207,500, or $415,000 as a married filer. Instead, those business owners are eligible for a smaller deduction if their income is above the regular $157,500 and $315,000 thresholds but under the SSTB limitations.
  • The elimination of a large portion of the entertainment expense deduction. Up until the TCJA's passage, businesses of all sizes could deduct entertainment expenses they accrued while wining and dining clients. Taking clients out for business-related meals is still deductible at 50 percent. Promotional events are also still deductible, if the company's message is the focus of the event. In addition, gatherings for employees, such as a holiday party, are also still deductible.
February 26, 2019
  • Be attentive to the reasons someone might disagree with you. It isn’t enough to dwell on the strengths of your own position. Accept that an issue can have strong reasons on both sides.
  • Rather than lead with your strongest arguments, start by interrogating those of your adversary.
  • Establish a common set of foundational terms as quickly as possible. If you and your opponent can’t agree on some basic points -- that the earth revolves around the sun, for example – you will be less likely to come to a mutual understanding. 
February 26, 2019

Recently, researchers scored 47,000 films on IMDb that had been tagged as referencing or being referenced in other films. Following are the top 10 most influential movies in Western culture, according to the study:

10.  Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (1937)
  9.  Frankenstein (1931)
  8.  The Birth of a Nation (1915)
  7.  Citizen Kane (1941)
  6.  Metropolis (1927)
  5.  2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
  4.  King Kong (1933)
  3.  Psycho (1960)
  2.  Star Wars (1977)
  1.  The Wizard of Oz (1939)

SOURCE:, 12/27/...

February 26, 2019

If “Pokemon Go” has overextended your short attention span, up your game with the Vatican’s “Follow JC Go,” a new augmented reality mobile game in which players collect saints and other notable Bible figures as they move around the world. Pope Francis has approved the game, which asks players to answer questions about the characters and to donate to charities to earn game currency. The Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera reported...

February 26, 2019

St. Patrick’s Day means green: green clothes, green décor and, of course, green beer. All it takes to make a brew as emerald as the Isle herself is a couple drops of food coloring, right? That wasn’t the case 101 years ago when the idea for the hued brew was cooked up in New York City (not Ireland!). That year, the toastmaster of a Bronx social club’s St. Paddy’s celebration added a drop of “wash blue” to the beer. 

February 26, 2019

Not bringing your lunch to work because of the microwave line backup? Consider investing in a butane-powered crème brûlée torch. With it, you can:


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