Friday, October 17, 2014

Need Help Choosing Candidates for the Election? Quick and Easy Ways to Choose the Best Candidates

It pays for voters to be knowledgeable. Yet, we have all stood in the voting booth and wished we knew how to make better choices. Now, no matter where you live, you can access enough information online to help you decide which candidate will make the best official.

I will never vote in a booth again. For the first time, I voted by mail. After mailing my ballot this afternoon, I just had to share what I learned.

From the comfort of my favorite recliner, I chose the governor quite easily. I even knew who I wanted for senate and house. Then, things got a little more foggy--ok, very foggy.  My ballot had a long list of judges, a school board member, a local municipal commissioner and more. I am sure I looked like a deer in the headlights as I gazed at all these unfamiliar names. But, because I wasn't standing in a booth, I pulled out my cell phone and started looking up the candidates.

First of all, there is always From there, I found a couple of very helpful sites that clarified every other choice I faced. But, I don't recommend the candidates' re-election sites. Read facts--not marketing hype to make your decision.

I went to and was able to compare all judge choices. As long as you note whether its federal or state court and which type of court before searching the judge's name in the search box in the upper right-hand corner, you will sail through this. All the information you need is right there on your ballot. In most cases I could see the candidates education, experience and usually some special causes they support. If religious persuasion matters to you, you can find indicators by noting their college or what causes they care about.

For other open positions, I went to It works just like the above site but covers positions other than judges. Just get into the proper section: federal, state or local. Then find the various positions on your ballot. Typically they had the ballot items listed with a link to both candidates you are choosing between. They had all but one of the commissioners running for election in my small town. I thought that was really good because they cover elections for the entire USA.

Return to google if you hit any dead ends. There are other sites you can explore if needed. But, these two are particularly easy to navigate and were almost completely comprehensive in my case.

With a cell phone, you can do this standing in the booth. If you take the time, you can vote with confidence while choosing the candidates who support the values closest to your heart.

Happy voting, America! May the best candidates win. 

If you have other favorite sites, feel free to post them in the comments.

Malinda Winkle
Business Blogger

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The New 1099K Small Business Tax Form

This is not the first time I have broached the subject of the new 1099K tax form for small business. Take a look at the following infographic provided courtesy of

Malinda Winkle

big news for small business owners 1099 K Infographic

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Financial Aid Process

by Malinda Winkle

If you or a family member has tried to navigate the waters of financial aid for post-high school education, you know how important it is to understand all your options. With that understanding you will make the best choices for funding your college education--choices that have the potential of affecting your financial life for decades. Take a look at the following infographic provided by Southern New Hampshire University  that explains many of the factors you should consider before returning to college.

Navigating the financial aid system infographic by Southern New Hampshire University, SNHU.EDU
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Monday, May 14, 2012

The New 1099K Tax Form

Small businesses who sell above a certain level will now receive a 1099K that reports to the IRS their gross earnings. This new form especially applies to small business online sellers on marketplaces such as and An interesting infographic below, created by, explains some of the ins and out of this new tax form so you can better understand whether this change will affect your own small business taxes.

big news for small business owners 1099 K Infographic
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Chemical Mergers & Acquisitions

by Malinda Winkle

Sometimes the corporate world prefers to buy their way into the marketplace of a given business sector. Using this strategy, chemical corporation executives wisely search for a chemical investment bank to assist them in merging with or acquiring another corporation that complements the long-term goals of the corporation.

In considering chemical merger or acquisitions, choose experts with vast experience in the chemicals sector. For example, The Valence Group is an international chemical investment bank with the expertise required to create and execute successful chemical mergers and acquisitions. Because they have locations on three continents, they have experts in the field who know the very market you have chosen to target.

 As all corporate executives know, every sector has its own special needs, considerations, difficulties and complexities. Having an international chemical advisory team, such as The Valence Group, on hand during decision-making and negotiations provides an obvious edge against your competition. Maximize the likelihood of a merger or acquisition succeeding by finding advisors who specialize in your particular sector.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Trash TV

Written by my friend Judson Kelly

I went to I moved in here because one thing I was Not going to be without was Cable! I’ve gotten so used to having all the premium channels and I didn’t want to miss an episode of Spartacus or Game of Thrones, my new favorite. Spartacus is kind of hard to watch now because they had to change the main character – the first guy who played him died in between seasons one and two which is just crazy. I like Game of Thrones because it reminds me of Lord of the Ringsand that was one of my favorite movies so it’s no wonder. I think I’m going to spend some time painting and decorating soon but for now I love watching the shows I missed while I was living in a rental house. Thank goodness for having On Demand so I can watch back episodes when I need to! I love my new place but I love my favorite shows more – is that weird!?
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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Free TABE Test Preparation Online

by Malinda Winkle

If you want to prepare for an upcoming TABE assessment, visit one or more of the following FREE sites:

Study Guide Zone - Look for the TABE Secrets videos, download a free 49-page TABE Study Guide, and find links to free TABE Skill-building Exercises in English and Math - - for free TABE practice questions and answers - - TABE sample test questions from all sections of the assessment

Fire Academy - - for an academic refresher for both English and Math

Ridge Fire Academy - – for a list of websites that will help you prepare for the TABE assessment - - for a list by subject of the skills the TABE assessments measures - - Ten sample questions from all sections of the TABE assessment

Remember, the study materials need not be specifically for TABE preparation. What you need is a thorough review of English, Language and Math. There are many forms of study materials that will assist you in this kind of review, including homemade flashcards, when appropriate.

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