All of You Equifax Haters Couldn’t Be More Wrong

Photo by Mike Stewart/AP

There are plenty of reasons to hate Equifax. But you shouldn’t.

Yes, it’s true that, because of the company’s poor safeguards and incompetent personnel (particularly its chief information officer and chief security officer, both of whom “retired” over the weekend), the private data of more than 140 million individuals was stolen by unknown hackers. And yes, that includes you. If you don’t believe me, then head on over to equifaxsecurity2017.com and check. When you likely find out that your social security number, credit data, home address and mother’s maiden name — information that can easily be used by hackers to gain access to your financial accounts or apply for credit and loans using your identity without your knowledge — has been stolen, you’ll likely hate Equifax. But don’t. Read more »

The One Obvious Thing That Will Dramatically Improve PHL

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Been to the Philly airport lately? You’ll like what you see. Sure, PHL isn’t laid out as well as Charlotte, nor does it have a SkyLink like DFW or the airiness of Indianapolis. But the people running the place have made vast improvements.

The terminals are bright and food selection is varied. In fact, I highly recommend Tony Luke’s roast pork in Terminal F, although I’m always tempted by the skirt steak offered by the Hub nearby. Renovations in Terminal B — which include new restaurants, tech-friendly seating areas, and (gasp) lots and lots of more power outlets — are welcome and very much appreciated. Getting in and out of the airport has never been easier — SEPTA runs every 20 minutes, and parking, taxis, and Ubers are plentiful. Read more »

How Philly’s Accountants Can Easily Raise $100 Million for the City

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If you have up to three kids and make less than $54,000 a year, you are probably owed about $6,300 this year from the federal government. In fact, the government has likely owed you this money for the past few years, and you can apply for that too. No, I am not making this up.

It’s called the Earned Income Tax Credit. It’s money owed by Washington to low-income individuals and, unfortunately, too many people in Philadelphia are leaving it on the table. How many? According to City Councilman Allan Domb, about 40,000 people in the city are eligible for an average refund of about $2,500. The amount of money left on the table last year? About $100 million. Read more »

OPINION: The One Big Thing Missing From Allan Domb’s Plan to Grow the City

WTP B26 Audrey 1” by See below – Wiki Takes Philadelphia. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.

As we’ve unfortunately learned, some business leaders may not be the most effective political leaders. But Allan Domb doesn’t fall into that category.

Since taking office as an at-large City Council member last year, Domb has dived into the job with enthusiasm, commitment, and energy. He doesn’t need to be doing this. He’s made plenty of money selling and managing real estate over the past few decades. But clearly he wants to make a difference. He wants Philadelphia to grow — and not just because the city’s growth will help him sell and manage more real estate. But because he cares about the city’s future. Read more »

OPINION: What New Jersey Really Should Do to Decrease Smoking

Photograph by ampols/iStock

I used to smoke up until my mid-20s. And then I stopped. Partly because I married a nonsmoker, but also because I started seeing this image of the smoke I inhaled filling up my lungs and infecting my body. That image gave me pause. Would I want my kids one day to be smokers? Of course not. We all know how bad it is. So why kind of example would I be setting if I smoked?

Yet still, lots and lots of people still do it. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 15 out of every 100 adults in the U.S. are smokers – that’s about 36.5 million adults. Many of these smokers are intelligent, hard-working people who have access to the Internet, are aware of the health risks, read the dire warnings on their cigarette packages, and likely know a relative or friend who has died from something related to the habit. And yet they still spend anywhere from $5 to $13 for a back of Marlboro Reds, depending on where they live. This is not good judgment – and unfortunately it affects me. Read more »

Seattle Will Now Be Taxing Its Rich. Should Philly Be Doing the Same?

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Looks like the city of Seattle’s at it again.

Despite a recent independent study conducted by the University of Washington that found that the city’s planned $15-per-hour minimum wage is already driving away small businesses and reducing employment, the town’s elders are still not satisfied. So last week, Seattle’s City Council approved a new measure that would impose a 2.25 percent income tax on the “wealthy” — those making $250,000 per year individually (or $500,000 jointly).

“Seattle is challenging this state’s antiquated and unsustainable tax structure by passing a progressive income tax,” the city’s mayor was reported as saying by Fox Business. “Our goal is to replace our regressive tax system with a new formula for fairness, while ensuring Seattle stands up to President Trump’s austere budget that cuts transportation, affordable housing, healthcare, and social services. This is a fight for economic stability, equity, and justice.”

Ah yes, it’s Trump’s fault. Read more »

It’s Time for Single-Payer Health Care

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I frequently travel around the country meeting and speaking with business groups about issues affecting their companies. The business groups I speak to are located in places like Montana, Ohio, Nebraska, and Texas. Many of the attendees are farmers, manufacturers, distributors, and service providers. Most of them don’t live in big cities. And yes, like me, the majority of them lean to the right. Some even fall over.

Of course, health care is a major part of those discussions. And you know what I’ve found? We right-leaning conservatives actually have a whole lot in common on that issue with our left-leaning friends. OK, not with Lena Dunham. But more than you may realize. Read more »

Forget Trump and Macron — We All Suck at Handshakes

President Donald Trump shakes hands with French President Emmanuel Macron during a meeting at the U.S. Embassy in Brussels on May 25th. Photo by Evan Vucci/AP

If you’re honest with yourself, you know this: You suck at handshakes. I totally do. And so does Donald Trump. I sympathize.

Trump had a few, very type-A handshakes with French president Emmanuel Macron this week that caught the world’s attention for their comic vigor. And this wasn’t our president’s first handshake drama: He famously avoided shaking hands with Angela Merkel at a White House meeting in March, and had a bizarre yank-and-move interaction with Canadian prime minster Justin Trudeau in February. Read more »

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