I’ve adopted the habit of summarizing the things I’ve learned over the past week and posting a short note here on my personal blog. Normally I write this on Sunday but I was happy to spend yesterday at Cape May NJ walking through the Christmas displays.

Several of the things I’ve learned this week focus on propaganda:
1) Some reporters cannot be trusted to produce an unbiased story. Fortunately the list I’ve noticed so far is short (about 6) and so I can keep an eye out for them.
2) Some government scientists are under pressure to produce results that justify their political bosses’ agenda.
3) I am reminded that the public does not recognize even blatantly bad science unless they are spoon-fed the logical ingredients.

4) When armed with logic and patience, it is pretty easy to disarm bad science in the eyes of the public.

Some other realizations:
1) CPAs, by and large, are open-minded but under-informed and therefore mostly silent on ACA issues that affect them and their clients.
2) Consumer medical debt is a “hot issue”.
3) The New York Times reports that 44% of prime working-age men aged 25-54 in Cumberland County NJ are not working. Still hard to believe.
4) Long term capital gains can be tax-free for modest income people. Getting tax software to recognize this can be tricky.
5) There is still much confusion on the IRS Publication 15 treatment of health benefits taxation for business owners.
6) 2014 has been great for real estate values but locally we are still 15% lower than at the market peak.
7) There is a growing consumer interest in ways to protect from medical bills and debts left uncovered by Obamacare.

8) Microsoft Lens mobile technology is working out better than I expected and may prove to play a big role in cutting time requirements and improving documentation of business and of “life”.


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