Running social media contests and promoting holiday sales on the Internet are simple ways that small and medium-size businesses can cash in on the holidays, writes Rob Marvin. Holiday-themed e-mails and free gift offers can also draw potential customers. Other advertising methods can include pay-per-click ads and holiday kickoff events, Marvin writes.
A 2014 budget measure inspired by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., could leave President Barack Obama's health care reforms on the rocks, by making it impossible for the administration to fund critical "risk corridors" that shield insurers from initial losses. Rubio's measure blocked officials from dipping into Medicare funding or other resources to top up its risk-corridor fund, leaving the administration without the cash needed to keep paying insurers. "I think this is one of the most effective things they've done so far in terms of trying to undermine the Affordable Care Act," says health care law expert Tim Jost.
Two turkeys named Honest and Abe will be pardoned by President Barack Obama today, as part of a tradition that's also a carefully staged lobbying event run by the National Turkey Federation. This year's turkeys have been picked for their personalities, says Foster Farms Manager Joe Hedden. "We want to present the president with a well-mannered and socially skilled turkey that's going to act right on the big day," he says.
The Tory Burch Foundation has announced a fellowship program focused on helping women expand their businesses -- and for one lucky winner, that means $100,000. After 30 semifinalists are vetted, public voting will narrow it down to 10, who will receive grants, an assigned mentor for one year and a three-day trip to New York.
Thirty percent of businesses no longer host a year-end holiday party, the Society for Human Resource Management says. Lack of interest from employees, concern about risks from excessive alcohol consumption and new workplace expectations from millennials were cited as possible reasons.
Court documents filed by employee group OUR Walmart allege that Wal-Mart investigated workers who participated in protests in 2013. The documents say the retailer hired an intelligence-gathering group from Lockheed Martin, contacted the FBI and ran a labor hot line for managers to report employee activities.
Some small businesses are closing their doors on Black Friday as a protest against the commercialism of the holiday season. Other entrepreneurs just aren't interested in competing with big-box stores' deep discounts. "This is one of the perks of being a microbusiness," says Nan Morningstar, co-owner of the Free Radicals boutique. "Since I'm the boss, I get to say if we're going to take a day off."
A number of Republican groups, including the influential Club for Growth, are working to derail Donald Trump's candidacy through an attack-ad blitz and anti-Trump fundraising effort. Party insiders fear that Trump's enduring presence on the primary campaign trail could cause permanent damage to the GOP brand, and make it impossible for the party to win over Hispanic and black voters. "The stark reality is that unless something dramatic and unconventional is done, Trump will be the Republican nominee and Hillary Clinton will become president,” said Liz Mair, who will runs the anti-Trump group Trump Card LLC.
Sixty-four percent of President Barack Obama's Medal of Freedom awardees are men, compared with about 85% of recipients under President George W. Bush. Both presidents have honored white and black Americans at roughly the same rates, but Obama has been notably more inclined to honor activists, and less inclined to confer the medals on academics.
Wealthy people living in states with high levels of economic inequality tend to give less than those with moderate incomes, according to a recent study by researchers at the University of Toronto and Stanford University. The study found income inequality can result in "the belief that one is more important and deserving than others," said its authors. Center for the Study of Inequality Director Kim Weeden said that if greater inequality makes people less generous, philanthropists need to develop a system for giving that doesn’t rely on altruism and generosity alone.
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