A Closer Look

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with Anthony Newcombe

#CancelStudentDebt – some alternatives? 

The Issues: 

  1. Who gets relief? 
  2. What happens to those who “responsibly” paid off their debt? 
  3. Who’s on first? ⁉️

Mark Cuban weighed in on this matter a few months ago.  If the super-rich say we should do something, then, shouldn’t we just fall in line?  America seems to follow the lead of the rich and famous every single time.  What changed this time around?  Did I miss something?

Background

Anyone who follows me online knows one thing: I’ve made myself abundantly clear on my position regarding this subject matter. It’s littered on my social media profiles, I post about it all the time, and I honestly believe it’s as much a hindrance to our young graduates’ futures as inflation, climate change, gun control, abortion rights, and/or any of the other “hot-button topics” we spend so much time and effort arguing about these days.  Let’s face it:  a pile of debt does absolutely nothing positive for someone starting out in the current business or real-world environment.

Solutions

However, let’s not be selfish or naive.  We know there’s another side.  Let’s go there.  Right now.  One counterargument is: “Why overlook those who paid their balances?!” Let’s not do that.

What if the government followed through and struck $10,000 of student debt for those who are carrying a balance at this time; while also providing a $10,000 federal tax credit to those who can prove they already paid their balances in full? Of course, included could be an “opt-out” provision for those who don’t require either, correct?

Like everything else, it’s never going to be a cheap or simple solution.  Just like with all the other ongoing crises: Ukraine, Covid-19, homelessness, etc.  However, what it does provide is a reasonable alternative that is fair and all-inclusive.  And  how do we pay for it?  It seems as though  somewhere in that $30 trillion dollar pile of debt we’ve accumulated, there must be something that can be shifted around to do this.  Congress just needs to work much harder and more diligently to find a way to make this happen.

It’s sort of like that old auto mechanic commercial, “you can either pay me now, or pay me later.”

Any thoughts?

See you in August (try to stay cool till then guys!)

-A.N.

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Anthony Newcombe is a 4-time entrepreneur, author, narrator, and full-stack developer. He blogs about nearly every topic possible and enjoys tinkering in the yard on weekends.

A Closer Look …

with Anthony Newcombe

Let’s take a closer look …

Date: June _13, 2022

Topic: Inflation: Can we offset it? Here are some thoughts

Everyone keeps talking about “inflation, inflation, inflation.” If you ask me, it’s one of those topics that you don’t even need to discuss to understand that it exists. It’s the “elephant blocking the gas pump. Perhaps it’s the elephant blocking the grocery aisles. Or maybe it’s the same elephant pushing the interest rates to unthinkable levels in such a short span of time. 

Backdrop

Regardless of who (or how) we may believe is ultimately responsible for all of this, the fact of the matter is that we are a nation of 330 plus million, living in a world of 7 plus billion people. We are consuming the same air, energy resources, and food at a pace we’ve never seen in history. We’re an aging country that is unable to bring in anywhere near as many replacements as we are (and will continue) losing for the next 15-30 years or more. Oh, and lest we (not) forget, we are still grappling with a pandemic which, predictably, has morphed into a years-long menace. 

Solutions

 
So, where does that leave us? Well, in my humble opinion, I think we might want to pass some of the infrastructure bills that are collecting dust in D.C. The more able-bodied people who are yanked from their video and FB screens and are out replacing some grossly outdated structures around this nation, the quicker we can produce some actual dollars that aren’t printed and sent out from D.C.  

Also, this might bring a little fresh air into the lungs of the same kids who are taking over streets our streets, smash-and-grabbing merchandise off our retail shelves, and, of course, breaking into our cars and houses to pick up a catalytic converter or a Rolex watch to sell online or in the black market somewhere. 

Yes, I know what you’re going to say. “We need tougher policing – these kids are savages!” (Or something to the like). Perhaps, some are, and in some ways, we do. But I believe the majority have simply lost their way somewhat and need to be shown a legal and hopeful method to win. Raising rents, tuition, ignoring homelessness, and pretending that everything will take care of itself if we just elect (fill in the blank), will NOT do the trick. We need to offset our losses. We need to provide the right sort of distractions. The ones that give a positive new pathway, that burn energy from frustration, that teach new skills, and that, most importantly, supply a focus and the ability earn actual dollars worthy of the effort put in! 

Any thoughts? 

See you in July 🌥️ (Let’s bring the sun out!)

-A.N. 

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Anthony Newcombe is a 4-time entrepreneur, author, narrator and full-stack developer. He blogs about almost every current topic and likes to tinker around in the yard on weekends.

A Closer Look …  😡😡

with Anthony Newcombe 

Let’s take a closer look …

Date: Wednesday March 9, 2022 

This month’s topic:  Why does it feel like anything now means everything?!   

THIS FIGHTING TAKES PLACE … EVERYWHERE! 

It just seems like any subject we discuss nowadays is like the end of the world. Airports/ airplane aisles, vaccines, masks, reading choices, luxury taxes, hirings and firings, gasoline/ grocery/ ticket lines – you name it – we will fight each other seemingly to the death if we don’t agree with something for it. You don’t like what someone says on a plane? Kick their a**! Don’t like the mask they’re wearing? Kick their a**! Don’t want to pay luxury taxes to small market teams? Refuse to field any players or teams…STRIKE! Not to mention all the unnecessary bombing and warmongering going on in the world.   

ALMOST ANYBODY FIGHTS … EVEN THE ONES WHO CLEARLY CANNOT 

Where did all these a**kickers come from? I’ve never seen so many people (most of whom honestly can’t fight) balling up their fists and letting it rip! Women just the same! It’s just odd to me. I always thought I was the one with had a somewhat of a short fuse, but it appears the saying, “If you live long enough, you’ll see it all” really applies more now than ever.   

WHAT’S THE SOLUTION? 

Perhaps it’s a confluence of so many negative events dovetailing – and combusting – in real time. Or maybe it’s something else. Am I missing something, or are you do you seeing the same thing? If you asked me, I would like to see this kind of energy going towards rebuilding roads and bridges, relieving student debt, cleaning up the environment, and getting a grip on our dependence on foreign energy.  All I know is we need to collectively try another path. Because this one isn’t solving anything.  Otherwise, I don’t see us having a whole lot left to argue and fight over in the end!   

Any ideas?   

See you in the spring!   ☀️🍃 ☀️🍃☀️🍃

-A.N. 

A Closer Look …

with Anthony Newcombe 

Let’s take a closer look …

Date: January 6, 2021 

This month’s topic:  

Hello 2022 … how is it different than 2021? 

 2020’s #NYE thought: “Wow, if we can just get to 2021, all will be fine!”  And then, chaos on Capitol Hill. This, followed by the Delta variant incurring its wrath. Now it’s Omicron. “Wow, if we can just get to 2022, all will be just fine!” Well, what the h*ll are we supposed to do NOW?! 

Last fall, others simply fretted over whether they would be able to exchange gifts over the holidays. Remember the shipping container fiasco? Will that holiday gift arrive on time? If so, when and how much more will it cost? Should I go onto Amazon.com like almost everyone else who used to shop in the brick-and-mortar retail stores? We better hope and pray these guys never need a government bailout!  

Now, we’re in 2022 (exhale)  

Factoid: we just tallied over 1 million new U.S. infections in one day earlier this week. Some Americans are having to wait in line for hours for COVID tests or pay up to $75 per testing kit at a local pharmacy. All this simply to determine whether or not they can return to work or send their kid(s) back to school for the new year. Worse yet, it looks like the few checks sent last year for childcare are instead being diverted to pay for overpriced groceries, gasoline, school supplies, medications – just to name a few.  

 So, with all this, one would think 2022 would bring about a “fix” for our problems. Well, with just a few days into the new year it doesn’t seem so, does it? Interest rate hikes are looming (and expected to rise beginning EOQ1 2022), gas prices are forecasted to hit $4.00/gallon (or more) in many states, which translates to practically $6.00/ gallon in some spots like California.  Home prices are skyrocketing still, but let’s face it: who can really afford to move anywhere “cheaper” in the country? 

Any ideas? 

See you next month (at the gas station) 

-A.N. 

A Closer Look 👁👁

👁👁with Anthony Newcombe 👁👁

Let’s take a closer look …

Happy Holidays ALL!!

This month’s topic: Required Tests for Congress Members

We’re going to end this year with a BANG!! Let’s just call it like it is: we need to require all candidates who run for all congressional seats and judicial appointments to pass a test that ensures they are: qualified, sane, interested, and able to perform all of the necessary duties of the job. We don’t have this in place at the time this blog goes to publishing.

COMMON SENSE RED ALERT!!

Q: Could we ever be able to be hired for or allowed to start set foot in a job that we didn’t even want to succeed in?   
 

Q: Would we ever be granted access to secrets of any business without first providing proof of qualifications for the position?  
 

Q: Might we ever see a situation where employees (decision-makers) are allowed to cavalierly sit back and allow the company they are in charge of to be smashed to smithereens?   
 

Clearly, the answers to all of the above hypothetical scenarios is of course, in fact, NO!!  
 

It would never happen, and if it did, there would be a swift and permanent termination of employment and possible legal consequences beyond.   
 

For these reasons, it seems asinine that we would think that this couldn’t, isn’t, or would never happen to our governing bodies. We are observing some of the most clear-cut examples of people with who have zero interest in continuing democracy: blitzing seats, refusing to govern, and participating in the some the most vile, pathetic – let alone dangerous – behavior imaginable. Why are we sitting back and allowing it?  Why the continued lack of outrage?
 

Current major areas affected  
 

Covid-19/ our collective health: 800,000 dead … say no more.  
 

Overturning laws/ court uncertainty:  If we no longer can trust the people who are creating, writing and adjudicating our laws, then how the heck are we supposed to abide by them?
 

Debt ambivalence: $30 Trillion? $35 Trill? How about a nice, round $40T?  Why does it seem nobody’s bothered by this number anymore? 
 

Civil disobedience:  Are we paying attention to all of the destruction and anger we have towards each other?  How about sharing commercial airplanes, public roadways, and other community space? Is it now the one with the biggest fists, guns, or whatever the one who has the last say?  What have we become?  
 

⏰Wake up call ⏰

Look people.  I don’t enjoy stopping at red lights in big city traffic any more than the guy next to me who thinks he’s Mario Andretti.  But, one thing I do know … is if we all decide to continue to do our own thing, society as we know it may not know we all won’t last or be around much longer.  I mean, how could it?!
 

Happy holidays (seriously) and see you in 2022 (… hopefully)

-A.N.

A Closer Look …

with Anthony Newcombe 

Let’s take a closer look

Date: November 5, 2021 🦃🍂🌧️

👀This month’s topic:  👀

Did the American Worker Burnout (on America)? 

We’ve always pride ourselves on our “American work ethic.” The number of hours we labor, the few paid vacation days we take advantage of – always the highest and lowest in the world respectively.  Now, with decades of blood, sweat and tears invested, we seem to be reevaluating ourselves (and with it, our bosses, workplace, culture, etc.) ALL AT ONCE!  

Perhaps that it seems so overwhelming right now.  We were so entrenched in our commutes, schedules, balance “act” with family, etc., that events like Covid Pandemic Job Participation have forced us to stop, sit (at a distance), and rethink everything about our pre-pandemic lives.  Who knows, it may turn out to Psychology of Work-Life Balance During Covid one of our proudest moments, or, in many cases, the tipping point to nowhere. 

One thing that is not helping us is the perpetual gridlock in D.C. and locally too.  We live in what is termed one of the most thriving economies in history, but still see more homelessness, climate decay, and rotted infrastructure in its midst.   

How are we supposed to weigh our professional futures collectively when we can’t even pass a bill to fund so many of those jobs and plans?  How is it possible to continue to vote for leaders who only show up for us to convince us to “come through for them” by voting every term?  Of course, the years in between are always filled with lip service, finger-pointing and, to quote a very young woman enmeshed in the global climate battle: (“blah, blah blah”) Climate Change “Boils Over” Around Global Summits  

 It’s a lot easier to tell people they need to retain the motivation to work hard – much harder to show them the way to prosperity.  “Being accountable,” “keeping your word,” “following through.”  Those were simple phrases we not only embraced but rarely had to define in decades past.  Now, there’s a perpetual inability for those in leadership positions to do this. It’s even cost the jobs of many who attempt to do so!  We need to look in the mirror, face the music, and make some drastic changes NOW!  Otherwise, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the American worker, and with it – the American Dream – vanishes forever. 

What do YOU have to say about this?  We’d like to hear it! 

See you next month for our 2021 finale! I’m out!

A.N. 

A Closer Look …

with Anthony Newcombe 👀👀

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October’s topic:  

The “Cottage Industry” has caught up with me (finally)

20-plus years working in a remote setting … and wouldn’t change a thing! 


Well, it took a while, but what can I say:  I TOLD you so!  Well, not entirely.  I spent much of my time since 1999 believing I had to keep some sort of secret or something. I asked myself: 

  • Will they ever find out that I tend to wear shorts and sandals during my business calls and videos? 
  • Do you they know that have no interest in driving downtown for any reason at all?  Including closing giant deals? 
  • Will they be mortified if one of my little ones barges into my home office and vomits mac and cheese all over my desk in real time?  Did I care even if something like that happened? 

The answer to the above and many other questions, is, well, NO.  I didn’t care.  I don’t care today either.  And I probably won’t care at any time in the future.  I mean, let’s face it:  Nobody I know out-works me.  In fact, I haven’t been on a real vacation since the end of 2017.  Oh yeah, we probably shouldn’t even count that one because I was finalizing my book, Sorry, 50 is NOT the New 30, during that trip. 

I look around and see Congress on break most of the calendar year.  I see neighbors who can barely roll out of bed by noon and spend their weeknights getting high and drinking all night.  I come across those on social media pretending they’re working, but still, can’t figure out what they’re even working on.  Working on their tans

I suppose, though, it took the Covid pandemic to convince more than a few professionals to “hang up their car keys” and settle into whatever makeshift workspace they could create within their 4 walls.  And looking around, it’s hard to see many other benefits of this whole health scare period in the United States and beyond.   

However, one thing I do know is the cottage industry is here to stay and that’s a good thing because it will keep me plugging along, my sanity in check, and, of course, my dry-cleaning bill will remain where it belongs – in the home office shredder! Ciao! 

So, what’s your story? 

We’ll catch up with you again in about 30 days … I’m out! 

-A.N. 

A Closer Look …👀👀👀

Let’s take a closer look

with Anthony Newcombe 

 

It’s practically another fall season, and I don’t know about YOU, but to US, it still feels like we’re inches from the summer sun! Some other areas of concern:  

Whereas most of the above is nature’s doing, we must also be much more vigilant in how we are contributing to the increasing strength and duration of each.  We need to do a much better job of collectively working towards solutions to these problems – as opposed to exacerbating them.    

  • Should our infrastructure plans “adjust” according to the frequency and severity of these events? 
  • What do YOU intend to do about these problems?   
  • What am I going to do? 

These are the questions that need to be asked and addressed.  Otherwise, we are kidding ourselves while we idly stand by as observers of our own demise.   

Any ideas?  

-A.N. 

A Closer Look👀👀👀✔✔✔

with Anthony Newcombe

Let’s take a closer look

Title: W-T-F happened? 

Topic: Wasn’t Covid in our rear window … #GuessNOT  

Why is everyone testing positive NOW!?  I thought we were heading outta this “thing?” I thought the stands were going to be filled with something OTHER than “flat-Stanleys?”  I thought we were heading to the ball parks and arenas and concert venues again.  I thought we were heading back to some Broadway shows?  I thought I was sending my kids off to college to meet real people and professors.  You want me to wait ANOTHER YEAR?!! 

I guess, much like YOU, I THOUGHT a lot of things were happening, or about to happen at least.  But, like, you, I was wrong.  Again.  Or, was I right, and some of the stupidity around me was wrong? Hmm… Either way, we’re all sharing the same space, the same air, water, and, unfortunately, the same collective results. 

You mean the Bros. Bezos didn’t invite you and your bro to get outta Dodge and into space too?  Me neither.  Maybe next time, Geofredo.  In the meantime, I just wanna watch my damn football team this month.  I wanna see my favorite players and coach enter Canton in a few days.  We won’t spend too much time on them, but they are mine, and I’ve waited long enough to see them (since 2020).  And, I’ve remained masked and distant and silent, and….if I don’t get my way, I’m gonna have to be duct-taped to my office chair (not unlike some of these rabid air travelers).  People, we need to relax and agree that if we don’t follow the same protocols, we will remain in this lunatic space until we run out of—water…What? Now, we’re running out of THAT too?  You’re #KillinMe ! 

#CmonMan !

Oh well, I’m done venting…see you in the fall…hopefully…I’ll be the #DryThirstyOne  

A.N. 

A Closer Look …

with Anthony Newcombe 

 Happy….Well… EVERYTHING!   

There’s so much going on now, it’s no wonder we’re all running around like chickens with our heads cut off 🐔🐔🐔 

  • The End of Covid (but, are we sure??)😷😷 
  • 4th of July✨✨ Yeay! 
  • Mass crowds everywhere 👫👬👭👫👬👭 
  • 167 degree temperatures daily 🔥🔥🔥 
  • Summer! 🌞🌞 Why doesn’t “summer” make me smile anymore? But, “it’s a DRY HEAT,” right? Still, no smile here…🤒🤒 

Everything’s just … GREAT! I think… 

Well, I guess I’ll just leave it there and head off to my long, lost vacation destination.  What? My flight was … canceled?  You gotta be kidding me.  C’mon man!! And – it’s too damn hot to walk. 

Oh well, it could be worse.  I’ll just turn up the A/C and go read a book…👀👀 

How’s your summer going? 

See you next month guys!😉 

All the best,

– A.N.