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These are sold on the Internet. Legitimate ones are issued by the recognized auto club in your country and are ONLY valid with the normal government issued drivers license.

Identity Document Scams

Identity Document ScamsInternational Drivers Licenses - These are sold on the Internet. Legitimate ones are issued by the recognized auto club in your country and are ONLY valid with the normal government issued drivers license. The legitimate International Drivers License is little more than a translation document in numerous languages enabling authorities to see that you do hold a valid drivers license from your country. It is never a permission to drive by itself. It is never an identity document by itself since it was not issued by any government agency and if it is a real international drivers license you would have had to show a real drivers license to get one, so where is your real drivers license. Occasionally someone asks us if we would accept this as a form of identification and the answer is of course not.Drivers Licenses - There are replica or false drivers licenses sold on the Internet. The banks are quite capable of knowing what is real and what is not real. People that buy these licenses are fooling themselves more than anyone else.Passports - A few times a year our law firm gets presented with a hand written passport. Most large countries have not used hand written passports for over 35 years. Some of the less developed countries used them until the post 9/11 era, say around 2002. While it is possible to have a valid handwritten passport that is still current, the offshore banks will never accept one as an ID document. It must be a machine-readable passport. I would also say that traveling on a handwritten passport into the modern world would be difficult if not impossible. Most countries have machine readable passports with digitized photos, some even have RFID chip passports now and along you come with a handwritten passport and a picture glued into the passport with a stamp and signature across the bottom of the picture. I would think big problems. Get your country to issue you a new machine-readable passport with a digitized photo.Camouflage Passports - A camouflage passport is a non-official document printed in a passport type booklet. Such passport booklets could be ordered from printers in Asia, not sure if this is still allowed to go on, doubt it. The camouflage passport was issued from a recently defunct country like Rhodesia. So the name of the issuer sounded quite real because at one time it was. When these first came out some offshore banks opened accounts based on them. After they were on the market for a while that soon stopped and the people who used them to open the accounts had their funds locked down. Perhaps they were allowed to show new identity documents; perhaps they were treated as criminals defrauding the bank and lost their money. Not sure since these countries at the time had bank secrecy. We are going back a number of years here. We are sure that numerous memos have been sent to offshore banks warning them of this and it was also a topic at numerous due diligence seminars. Again the person fooled the most by one of these camouflage passports is the buyer. Using one of these in the event of a terrorist detention in an airplane, hotel or elsewhere is unwise. You would be treated as a person of interest and probably questioned vigorously. If they simply decided you were nothing more than a person who likes to play games they would possibly lose interest in you but then again you came to their attention and became singled out and that is never a good thing is such a scenario. Contrary to what you see on TV and in the movies serious terrorists would be likely to do what any self respecting Mexican Road Bandito does and that is strip 100% naked the victims. This does not play out well on family oriented TV shows. This enables the bad guys to find things like identity documents, official credentials, keys, discrete weapons, money, contraband, and anything else that might have been concealed. So they will now find your other real passport and again you are a person of interest to the bad guys.Traveling with a camouflage passport is of course idiotic. If the authorities of some country find one on you it would be likely that you get detained and experience a long interrogation or worse especially if the name was different. This is a novelty item, not a second passport. These camouflage passports can only come back and hurt you. If you really fear traveling on your own passport go through the trouble of processing through immigration in another country and get a real second passport. Then you should have a government issued residency card, a driver?s license from the country and a visa card from a bank in that country, as we suggest and help our clients obtain. This is a full set of real legitimate ID that will pass scrutiny in any country.Fantasia Passports - These are passports issued from non-real countries. A famous one is Hutt River. There is a fellow who has a very modest parcel of land in Australia. He read some law and as a result declared war on Australia. They apparently did not mobilize the army and just ignored him, which left him able to declare his independence, or so he thinks, claims, or whatever. He calls himself a country and issues passports. He bought the passport books most likely in Asia. I believe his are printed but not machine readable so he probably is not able to get newer ones or he just wants to use up the ones he has. I even saw a diplomatic version of one of these once.These passports are not good for much. Maybe if you were in a real depraved third world country and tried a land crossing through an obscure border crossing going from one depraved third world country to another depraved third world country and there was an illiterate guard there it might work. People often take these fantasy passports and submit them for entry visas to third world countries in Africa who are happy to sell anyone a visa stamp. They collect a few entry visas and then try using it since it looks more real in that other countries have accepted it. Of course all the countries they have allegedly visited have only entry visas without an exit visa, which will raise many red flags in a civilized country.Another instance of these involved an old WWII oil platform a few miles off the cost of the UK called Sea Land. This was an oil platform that declared itself sovereign and issued passports. For a funny touch of humor. Over the years counterfeiters have printed their own versions of the fictitious countries selling passports and sold them thus cheating the original promoter out of sales knowing a prosecution would be almost impossible since the country in question is not real. The Florida Keys tried issuing their own passports some years back issuing Conch Republic passports. Conch is a fish used in seafood in the Florida Keys. These are very real looking fantasy passports. I imagine by now they have been pressured into stopping this practice. In a nutshell you are far safe and better off without one of these fictitious country passports than with one.

Evaluate Your Event To Accumulate Profit

Evaluate Your Event To Accumulate Profit

If you are running workshops, seminars or conferences like Oslo , Norway based Ulrika Fredrikson you won't be doing it as a charitable act. Let's face it, even if you were a charity, you'd have to cover your costs somehow. Ulrika runs a combination of sponsored and paid-for events which improves the ticket price for delegates but increases the pressure on her to fill seats to satisfy the advertising benefit for her sponsors.Whether your event cost $10 or $10,000 to stage, you should, for business reasons, calculate your return on investment. This is not as straightforward as making sure that the gate money covers your costs, although that is, in itself, important. To be rigorous you will be drawing information about all of the positive and negative effects the event has had on your bank account, your reputation and your graying hair both now and in the future and you will be making it available to whomever needs to know in a form that is easy to digest.Compiling event informationTo properly compile all of your event information you might want to put some time aside to revisit all of the details about the design, development, running and follow-up activities associated with the event.Financial InformationPut together the financial information and split it down into: planned expenditure unplanned expenditure direct income indirect but related incomePlanned expenditure is everything that you predicted you would spend on the project from the first including purchases, rentals, staff hours and expenses. Unplanned expenditure is anything else over and above what you originally thought was required. You are splitting this out, not because it is in some way wrong to incur unplanned expenditure but because it is part of the learning and self-training process. When you next run an event you will have a better idea of the contingency costs you ought to be planning.Direct income comes from ticket sales and any other sales like promotional items, books or products associated with the event. Indirect income covers any additional products or services that have been purchased since the event and the sale of which can be attributed to running the event. This is where the water starts to get a little muddy, as it is highly likely that some of your delegates will have been approached by your company many times in the past and it may become difficult to attribute a sales success to this event alone. By far the best thing to do here is to count the sale, or a proportion of it, say, a quarter and highlight it as being influenced by a combination of marketing tactics including the event.Ulrika has been in the conferencing business for around ten years and she knows that almost 50% of follow-through sales for her own company and for her sponsors can take twelve months or more to reveal themselves. Her advice is to acknowledge this but not count it as part of this event's income.

The Importance Of Preparing A Business Plan

The Importance Of Preparing A Business Plan

While employment is a surefire way of securing your future, there are always those who believe that entrepreneurship should be a priority not only among those who are already established in life but also for students who have just finished their studies. Other people believe that getting involved with a profitable business is still the way to go if one wants to be financially successful in the future.People who immediately go into business without any plan at all are the ones who end up with nothing at all, in terms of their capital or investment. This is because they have joined a war without carrying any weapon at all.Starting a business is not an easy task as it requires the proper motivation, preparation and research. You do not go into business just because you have thought of an idea that you believe will strike gold and you want to implement it immediately. Of course, some do this but the rate of failure will always be high.If you want to have a higher success rate in business, then you have to do it slowly and properly and with the proper business plan. A business plan will help you create a map of the business you want to go into plus it would help you pinpoint the difficulties that you would encounter along the way.A business plan will serve as your guide in starting and in implementing the business and in steering such business to success. When making a business plan, it is important to take note of your reasons in wanting to go into business, whether you are into it because you want to get rid of that bossy creature breathing over your head, or you want to be financially independent. It is also important to determine the proper business endeavor for you considering your hobbies and skills, time preferences and of course your experiences.Before doing your business plan, be able to identify the possible business area where you would like to go like if you want to go into the buy and sell business, what products would you sell? Is there a demand for the product you are planning to sell and are there other businesses in your locality which sells the same products? If there are, what would be your advantage over the existing enterprises selling the same products?Another important thing to consider is the legal structure that you would prefer, whether you would want to go into single proprietorship, partnership or a corporate type of business. Do you have an accountant who will manage your records? Also take note of your possible sources of capital and the amount you going to need to start and maintain the business.When you have answered these questions, then you are more or less prepared to write a business plan that will help you start your business. There are professionals who can help you make your business plan. You can also do some internet research and look for websites that are offering free business plans and guides.Once you have completed you business plan, then you can evaluate it whether it is at par with what you have in mind. A business plan is not rigid and it can be flexible depending on your business needs. However, a person who fails to make a business plan before starting a business venture can expect to have a rough time ahead.

Coal Reduces Reliance On Foreign Oil

Coal Reduces Reliance On Foreign Oil

Recently, the price of a barrel of oil rose to $40, the most expensive price in American history. With the rise in oil prices and constant instability in the Middle East, the United States seems headed for an energy crisis.But there is an abundant, low-cost energy source located throughout the country. That energy source is coal.After years of mine shutdowns, there is a renewed interest in coal in the United States. Companies such as Quest Minerals and Mining Corp. are now reopening mines and resuming coal production. There are 274 billion tons of coal in mines across the country. That amount of coal could last the United States for about 250 years, considering that the average American uses 7,000 pounds of coal each year. Using this resource decreases dependence of foreign oil and stimulates the economy in several ways.First, coal stimulates the American economy by maintaining and creating jobs for people that work in the mines and in coal transportation. For each of the four major freight rail lines, coal represents at least 40 percent of the total tonnage hauled each year. Many people are dependent on coal for their livelihood and will remain so if Americans increase their use of coal as an energy source.Moreover, because coal is a domestic resource, the cost of transporting it is much lower than the cost of importing oil from other nations. Transportation costs of coal are also lower because there are more options for transporting coal from one place to another. Coal is carried by barge and by train.Using coal is beneficial for more than just jobs and reducing transportation costs. The abundance of coal allows the price to remain stable, unlike oil prices in the volatile Middle East. Commodities like coal, whose costs remain stable or decrease, keep inflation low. Low inflation rates allow Americans to be confident that their savings and investments are safe. Another major benefit of coal power is the cost of electricity generated by coal. Generation of coal power costs one-fourth that of natural gas power generation. Businesses using coal power keep their overhead costs low and maximize profitability. Furthermore, coal is used to generate electricity for telecommunications, computers and all other electric-based technologies that boost the American economy. The benefits of coal power make it a logical choice for the power source of the future of the United States.

Postcard Monologue

I have existed and survived for decades and decades now. Though there has been several medium swarming in the community, my value cannot be understated. At first, I was used as a medium to carry simple notes and keep relatives and friends connected. I can break distance, run a mile, swim across oceans and fly underneath the horizon to give your dear ones timely message and the usual his and hellos.As years pass by, I was a bit depressed by the fact that I almost was forgotten by the people who once adored me. They shifted to the modern means made available for them. This fact made me sad. I was there longing for the attention to return by all means.To my delight, the discovery of incorporating pictures and images gave me my most wanted return to the limelight. With the innovation, I looked stunning and entertaining. Landscape, seascape, still life name it, I got them in my face. Funny, inspirational, satirical, enthrallingwhoa! I can handle them all!Nowadays, I still am embracing the limelight. Savvy businessmen and marketers are using me for improved purposes like advertising and promotions. I was instantly converted into a multi-purpose work of art.To keep my aficionados, I would like to advice them several things about postcard printing and mailing. This is my way of thanking themFirst, do repeat postcard mailing. One big shot is not enough. Hence, continuous boost is indispensable. Second, choose not according to price but quality. The best price does not entail the best catch. Ask around to form a good choice of postcard printing and mailing services.Third, in doing marketing through postcards, better not have them enclosed in envelopes. Making them readily open can make your message more accessible to more.Fourth, promote singly. In one postcard design, promote only one product or service. This is to avoid vagueness and confusion. This will also encourage retention.Finally, using me in your marketing strategy can be the be-all and end-all marketing tool. Get that moving change.

Greg Winteregg DDS, Discusses the When and How of Adding Dental Associates

(This is Part One of a two part article on the subject of Dental Associates.) Several times a week I field associate related questions from colleagues. These come from dentists who need one right away, as well as those just entertaining the idea for the future. The pros to adding an associate are obvious: more service for your patients, potentially more time off, someone to cover emergencies, etc. There are also plenty of cons: your patients may not like the new doctor, and you might worry about them making off with your patient base, etc. When discussing associates, thirteen years in private practice and close to as many as a trainer/consultant have taught me one hardbound rule: there is definitely a right and wrong way to go about this associate business. If one or more associates are in your future plans (whether this is now or ten years from now), there are several things to consider:1.When should you get an associate?2.How would you structure compensation?3.What's the best way to find one? 4.What are the important points to cover when interviewing?5.How will you integrate them into your practice? I'll start with number one: When should you get an associate?Arguably, this is the most important question. This is also where I see the most errors made. Let's say you are doing moderately well, still have some openings in your schedule and get about 10 new patients per month. You decide to expand your hours and bring in an associate to become more productive. The reasoning seems sound you are adding more hours and providing more treatment opportunities for your patients but this rarely works. New patients don't magically show up, the associate is unproductive and unhappy. You either a) let him or her move on or b) start moving work from your schedule to make the associate busier/happier. The net result is less profit and a problem, i.e "how do I keep my associate busy?"In this scenario the office was in no position to justify adding an associate. As such, this begs the question: How do I know when the "right time" is? To answer this question, ask yourself the following: a)Is your practice growing (or has it grown up to now and you just seem to have "maxxed out")?b)Are you scheduled efficiently?c)Is your business profitable?d)Is your schedule relatively full? If you answered "Yes" to all of the above, now is probably a good time to add an associate. I'll give you this scenario: Your practice has rapidly (or steadily) expanded up to a point where you can't take in more patients than you currently are. You are operating efficiently and the office is profitable. You just can't see more people and things start to book out a couple of weeks in advance. Now is the time to add that associate to serve three purposes:1) To provide faster and more efficient service to your patients, 2) To lighten your schedule so you can focus on the type of work you want to do and 3) To increase practice productivity. If my practice was in the above situation, I would look at adding an associate perhaps one to two days a week to start and roll from there. From a practical standpoint, I would also look at how many charts I had. In my experience 1,000 charts, if handled efficiently, can potentially keep a doctor and hygienist productive. Also, maintaining a ratio of one doctor to one hygienist seems to work best. If you are already have two full time hygienists (who are booked), chances are you need an associate now. However, you also need to consider the other points above.Business survival is inexorably connected to expansion. If the office is well-run (which would mean that it was expanding at least a little bit), there would come a time when you couldn't produce any more yourself and would need an associate. The level of production that will require an associate will be based on your style of practice, fees, type of dentistry you do, etc. At MGE (http://www.mgeonline.com) we suggest you get an associate when there is more work than you personally can handle and patients are being pushed out on the schedule too far.. How long is too long for them to wait? Although this is ultimately your decision, it shouldn't be more than a couple of weeks. Too long of a wait is just not good service! One of the questions asked above when deciding whether or not you should add an associate, asked about expansion. How much expansion do you need? To start, are you even getting enough new patients to support yourself? How many should you be getting? This depends in a large part on how you practice, but I'll give you a basic formula to use:a.Take your total number of active chartsb.Multiply this by 20%c.Divide "b" by 12 (months in a year)d.The figure from "c" above gives you the minimum number of new patients you should be getting on a monthly basis to maintain your practice's health. Note that this is just to keep you going. You would definitely need to exceed this number to add an associate. Example: Dr. Smith has 1200 active charts. 20% of this is 240. 240 divided by 12 is 20. To maintain a healthy practice, Dr. Smith should be getting at least 20 new patients each month. Keep in mind this formula assumes a couple of conditions exist:a)The new patients are fee-for-service.b)The doctor has an acceptable skill level when it comes to treatment presentation and acceptance (which is reflected in production and collections).If you want an associate, I would recommend that you far exceed this 20% factor. This is where the "MGE New Patient Workshop" comes in handy whether you want an associate or not. If you want more fee-for-service new patients to keep your practice healthy, to expand or to make it possible to add an associate the "New Patient Workshop" is the solution.

Summary

These are sold on the Internet. Legitimate ones are issued by the recognized auto club in your country and are ONLY valid with the normal government issued drivers license.