Mortgage Sub-Prime Crisis Examined
As Congress scrambles to fix the sub-prime crisis that plunged mortgage lenders into bankruptcy and homeowners into trouble, a new report by the Competitive Enterprise Institute explains why Congress should not get involved. The report comes in advance of a likely vote in the House of Representatives on the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2007 which would mandate that lenders only offer loans that the government determines have the best terms and net tangible benefits for borrowers. Many of the proposed solutions would likely increase default rates and make it more difficult for some to afford homes.
Ensign Introduces Bill Aimed at Tax Fairness
Sen. John Ensign recently introduced a broad tax bill in the U.S. Senate aimed at protecting millions of middle-income Americans, small business owners and seniors from a tax increase. The Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) Repeal and Tax Freedom Act would fix a flawed tax policy, and encourage economic growth by permanently extending the tax cuts on capital gains, dividends and marginal rates. Originally intended to ensure that the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes. Because the AMT is not indexed for inflation, middle-income Americans will be forced to pay higher taxes if a solution is not developed. Ensign’s bill would prevent more than 23 million taxpayers from being affected by the AMT. The proposed bill will permanently extend the tax cuts on capital gains, dividends and marginal rates would protect more than 90 million taxpayers, including small business owners and seniors from facing an increase.
Seven Ways Top-Performing Companies Get Ahead
All leaders want to be part of a top-performing company, as do employees. Have you ever wondered what makes a company a top performer? OnPoint Consulting conducted a research study on the subject. Here are seven ways companies can get ahead of the pack:
• Get comfortable with managing paradoxes. Leaders in top-performing companies are better at finding the right balance between what appears to be mutually exclusive outcomes.
• Understand how to manage change. Be forthright about the change and its impact, and set realistic objectives and milestones.
• Involve team members in decisions that affect them. Participative leadership matters.
• Lead by example. People don’t trust or follow leaders who don’t live by the same values they require of others.
• Strike a proper balance of centralized and decentralized responsibility. Ensure that people at all levels have the freedom to take action to achieve results.
• Excel at coordinating decisions and actions across organizational boundaries.
• Ensure that systems are aligned with strategic initiatives.
Bottom line, being a top-performing company is a rigorous challenge.
Become a Boss Employees are Thankful For
Managers get a bad rap in the workplace. Bosses are characterized as the office villains and are maligned for simply existing. How then does a boss transcend this collective disdain and actually become a supervisor whom subordinates appreciate. Managers at all levels should hone a style that serves everyone’s best interests and fosters a feeling of gratitude among subordinates. John M. McKee, author of “Career Wisdom” offers managers the following advice: give credit where it’s due; have an open door policy; appreciate face value; be firm but fair; and find and maintain an entire life balance.