Posts tagged with "Global Society"

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THE ECONOMIC SUPER BOWL

In midst of a pandemic that devastated society, including sports, the total wealth of 64 billionaire sports barons shot up by $98.5 billion, or over 30 percent. Taxpayer subsidies for stadiums of 26 billionaire team owners have totaled $9 billion since 1990, with most in last decade.

We won’t know the winner of this year’s Super Bowl till Sunday, but we already know the big winners in our COVID-ravaged economy include dozens of billionaire sports barons.

On the eve of the big game, and after 10 plus months of the pandemic, 64 billionaire owners of major league sports franchises—including the AFC champion Kansas City Chiefs’ Hunt family and the NFC champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Glazer family—have enjoyed a $98.5 billion rise in their collective net worth, a 30 percent increase, as millions of fans have fallen ill, lost jobs, neared eviction, gone hungry and died due to the coronavirus.

The 64 billionaires, who together own or co-own 68 professional sports franchises, had a combined wealth of $426 billion on January 29, 2021. This number is up from $326 billion on March 18, 2020, roughly since the start of the pandemic lockdowns, according to a new analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) and Americans for Tax Fairness (ATF), and data analysis from Forbes and Wealth-X. (Note: The increase in total billionaire wealth from March to January was $100 billion, but has been adjusted to $98.5 billion because an additional billionaire reached that status in January 2021.)

The sports billionaires’ private gain in the midst of so much public pain is particularly galling since many of their franchises have been the beneficiaries of taxpayer handouts. Over the past several decades, according to data maintained by Field of Schemes, 28 pro sports teams owned by 26 billionaires have received $9 billion in taxpayer subsidies (see Table here) to help build or update stadiums and arenas and make other investments that billionaires could presumably afford on their own. These publicly subsidized team owners have seen their wealth increase $45 billion since mid-March.

For the full report go to Pandemic Super Bowl 2021: Billionaires Win, We Lose.

Over the past five years—when a lot of sweetheart tax deals were cut—the collective wealth of sports billionaires shot up $165 billion, or 67 percent. Their combined wealth of $247 billion in March 2016 had grown to $426 billion by January 29 of this year. (Nine billionaires on the list in 2021 were not billionaires in 2016, accounting for the $14 billion discrepancy.)

The $98.5 billion wealth gain by 64 sports franchise billionaires since March 2020 could pay for:

  • A stimulus check of $1,400 for over 70 million Americans—almost half of the 153 million people who likely will be eligible under the pandemic relief plan proposed by President Biden based on the 2020 stimulus payments.
  • More than one-third of the $290 billion cost of providing $400-a-week supplements to existing unemployment benefits through September, as proposed by President Biden in his COVID rescue plan.

March 18 is used as the unofficial beginning of the pandemic because by then most federal and state economic restrictions responding to the virus were in place. Moreover, March 18 was also the date on which Forbes estimated billionaire wealth for the 2020 version of its annual report. That report provided a detailed baseline that ATF and IPS have been comparing periodically with real-time data from the Forbes website. [See past reports here] This methodology has been favorably reviewed by PolitiFact.

Last March is when the nation’s emergency response to the deadly virus threw professional sports, along with the rest of society, into turmoil. Thousands of low-paid stadium and arena workers lost their jobs as sports seasons were cancelled and curtailed.

The long winning streak of America’s billionaire sports owners is just part of the dominance of a national dynasty of 661 U.S. billionaires whose wealth has grown by $1.2 trillion, or 40%, during the pandemic. The number has climbed from $2.9 trillion on March 18 to $4.13 trillion, as of January 29, 2021 (see link here for all data).

Though only one of their teams will lift the Lombardi Trophy as Super Bowl champs this year, both the Chiefs’ Hunt family—specifically, Ray Lee Hunt and W. Herbert Hunt—and the Bucs’ Glazer family will continue their long reigns among the nation’s biggest economic winners. The Hunts’ net worth is estimated by Forbes at $6.3 billion, up $482 million during the COVID crisis. The Chiefs received $250 million in taxpayer subsidies for stadium renovations in 2006.

The Buc’s Glazer family is worth an estimated $1.7 billion, according to Wealth-X. Taxpayers provided a total of $218 million in subsidies for construction and renovation of the Buccaneer stadium in 1998 and 2015.

Sixty U.S. billionaires—roughly one in ten of the country’s 661 total billionaires—own one or more major league professional sports teams in the National Football League (NFL), National Basketball Association (NBA), Major League Baseball (MBL), and National Hockey League (NHL). Four other billionaires—three from Canada and one from Germany—own four additional teams.

“These billionaire sports barons have seen their wealth rise as their fans lose their lives, livelihoods, health and wealth,” said Chuck Collins, director of the Institute for Policy Studies, Program on Inequality.  “As a country, we should be investigating pandemic profiteering and taxing windfall gains during these extraordinary times.”

“The Super Bowl brings the whole nation together, but we have not come together as a country to beat the pandemic,” said Americans for Tax Fairness executive director Frank Clemente. “Billionaire sports owners have continued their long winning streak of ever-growing fortunes while fans at home are losing their lives and livelihoods. Real team work would require billionaires to pay their fair share of taxes so we can get the whole U.S. back to its winning ways.”

“Every year, wealthy sports team owners rake in more than two billion dollars in taxpayer subsidies for new stadiums and arenas that, according to innumerable economic studies, provide zero measurable economic benefit to the public,” said Neil DeMause, co-author of Field of Schemes: How the Great Stadium Swindle Turns Public Money Into Private Profit, and editor of the stadium news site. “Letting billionaire owners socialize their costs and privatize their profits has allowed the rich to get richer, while starving local governments of revenue to pay for schools and other genuine public needs.”

Tax reform that ensures the wealthy pay their fair share—the principle President Biden’s tax plan is built on—would transform a good chunk of those huge billionaire gains into public revenue to help heal a hurting nation. But getting at that big boost in billionaire fortunes is not as simple as raising tax rates: tax rules let the rich delay, diminish and even ultimately avoid any tax on the growth in their wealth. What’s needed is structural change to how wealth is taxed.

The most direct approach is an annual wealth tax on the biggest fortunes, proposed by Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, among others. Another option is the annual taxation of investment gains on stocks and other tradable assets, an idea advanced by the new Senate Finance Committee chair, Ron Wyden. Even under the current discounted tax rates for investment income, if Wyden’s plan had been in effect in 2020 America’s billionaire sports owners would be paying billions of dollars in extra taxes this spring thanks to their gargantuan pandemic profits last year. Another reform is needed to significantly strengthen the estate tax so that the riches accumulated by these ultra-wealthy sports franchise owners pay their fair share of taxes when these dynasties get passed onto their heirs.

Space Station Vacation

Culture Editor Tom Wilmer shares insights about civilian journeys to the International Space Station

By Tom Wilmer & Elizabeth Saylor

Today, even the best ultimate destination vacations are hampered by Covid-spector realities. Ubiquitous masks, goggles, testing and social distancing subconsciously ratchet up anxiety levels while simultaneously reducing pleasure and awe.

But what if there were a getaway promising out-of-this-world scenery, once in a lifetime thrills, a chance to make history and come away from it with a life-altering view of humanity’s totality — all possible without requisite plague masks, twinges of anthropophobia and hand-sanitizer-cracked hands?

Well, by thinking outside the box (or sphere, in this case), Directed by Roman Chiporukha and Erica Jackowitz, husband-and-wife co-founders of Roman & Erica, Inc., NYC-based lifestyle and luxury travel firm is the first company to offer such an epic adventure. Partnering with Axiom Space, seats are now available for a 10-day total “private astronaut” space flight  experience to escape earth’s confines, designating a low-earth-orbit space station as “home” for eight of those transformative days.

It’s only natural that Mike Suffredini, former director of NASA’s International Space Station, would be willing to lend his expertise as Axiom’s CEO to help  people experience the numerous social, economic and even cognitive benefits of space flight.

Hyperbole aside, space travel really is life changing. There’s even a term for visualizing earth from space: the “overview effect”, which is a profound sense of interconnectedness and euphoria whereby the viewer sees earth’s fragility, beauty and the oneness of all living things. Astronauts have even reported the cognitive changes re-made their perceptions of life’s purpose. Earthly, holiday vacation digital media memories are no match for life-affirming adventures beyond our atmosphere.

Aside from personal enlightenment, other private space-travel benefits are innumerable. For the industrially inclined, research and development opportunities from space’s microgravity/extreme environment will drive future discoveries unavailable on earth.

Scientific endeavors in the field of medicine, e.g. regenerative medicine, pharmaceutical R&D and accelerated-disease modeling– along with unparalleled possibilities for advancements in fluid physics and protein crystallization modeling, make the science/space coupling full of potentially profound discoveries.

Axiom Station will be constructed while attached to the ISS and, at the end of the ISS’ life, detach and operate on its own into the future.

And if a private astronaut’s proclivities are humanitarian, what better stage could there be to deliver a compelling message encouraging specific global behavioral change. No doubt, messages encouraging climate change awareness would strike an impressive cord with our delicate blue-dot planet framed by the cosmos.

So, how does one sign up for the trip of a lifetime?  Of course, would-be adventurers must be very healthy, and a thorough medical evaluation with a physician’s clearance is required. Once greenlighted physically, a 15-week astronaut training (spread out over almost two years) is held at space agency facilities — with the training purported to be an incredible experience even with feet planted on terra firma.

The launch team usually consists of three private astronauts and one career-commander astronaut. Learning to function as a team is crucial not just for safety reasons, but for building mental health ease and camaraderie. The fact that training  takes place in the same ultra-sophisticated, beyond-cutting-edge-tech facilities used by hero astronauts is heady stuff.

And then there’s the cost. With an all inclusive price tag of $55 million, it’s obviously out of reach for nearly all who may want to sail toward the stars… BUT for those who can afford to sign up now, their journeys will pave the way for the next wave of civilian astronauts and, within a relatively short period of time, drive down costs enough to enable hundreds, and eventually thousands, of eager space explorers to afford the mind-bending travel.

Though Roman & Erica, Inc. sold out the October 2021 flight, an extraordinary accomplishment, two seats are still available for the April 2022 launch. “We are the first travel company to successfully sell private astronaut seats for the ISS mission and are literally travel agents to the stars! It’s outta this world,” said Roman Chiporukha, CFO & Co-Founder of Roman & Erica, Inc. “We are thrilled to partner with Axiom Space. They are virtuosos in the private astronaut space and in the process of building the replacement to the International Space Station which is incredible!”

It’s been whispered that Tom Cruise is supposedly going for a 30 day mission in Oct 2022 with Mission Impossible director pal, Doug Liman. That would leave an extra seat, possibly, to chat up Top Gun while hurtling through space– hard to resist, right? After that, it’s your race to make a reservation with history. And if you’re not keen on travel to outer space, Roman & Erica will be happy to sort whatever else you’re interested in. We hear they have a waiting list to become a member and frankly, we are not surprised.

In this illustration, a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft is shown in low-Earth orbit. NASA is partnering with Boeing and SpaceX to build a new generation of human-rated spacecraft capable of taking astronauts to the International Space Station and expanding research opportunities in orbit. SpaceX’s upcoming Demo-1 flight test is part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Transportation Capability contract with the goal of returning human spaceflight launch capabilities to the United States.

Purdue Startup Fund Helps Move Technologies Across the World

A new funding option is helping provide support for Purdue-affiliated startups looking to gain traction and improve the world through innovative technologies.

The Purdue Startup Fund was started in 2020 by Purdue Ventures, an arm of the Purdue Foundry. The Foundry is an entrepreneurship and commercialization hub whose professionals help Purdue innovators create and grow startups.

“This fund is a partnership between the Purdue Research Foundation and Purdue University to maximize the university’s commitment to serving others through the commercialization of innovations,” said Wade Lange, vice president and chief entrepreneurial officer of the Purdue Research Foundation. “This is another crucial source of early-stage capital for our startups.”

The Purdue Startup Fund is designed to provide support for startups across all industries. Four startups have been selected so far for funding:

  • Umoja Biopharma – a startup focused on drugs using a patient’s own immune cells to kill cancerous cells.
  • Novosteo – a company that is developing an injectable drug to accelerate bone fracture repair.
  • ClearBlade – an industry-leading Edge Computing software company.
  • GoGig Jobs – an anonymous professional networking platform.

“These startups were selected based on their potential to make an impact on the world

through their technologies,” said John Hanak, managing director of Purdue Ventures.

The Purdue Startup Fund was created to provide support for early-stage companies with direct ties to Purdue intellectual property, alumni or other university connections. Like the Foundry Investment Fund, the Purdue Startup Fund is a sidecar funding that requires the existence of a significant institutional investment in a startup against which it can match a percentage.

“PRF has a mission to support Purdue and take the research, technologies and other work done here to the world,” said Riley Gibb, director of business development for Purdue Ventures. “The Purdue Startup Fund is another strategic way for us to make that happen. Capital can be a scarce resource for startups, so we wanted to offer another option.”

Startups interested in learning more can contact Gibb directly at rtgibb@prf.org.

Purdue Ventures directs three other funds: Ag-Celerator, Elevate Purdue Foundry Fund, Foundry Investment Fund, along with the Purdue Angel Network.

About Purdue Foundry

The Purdue Foundry is an entrepreneurship and commercialization hub whose professionals help Purdue innovators create and grow startups. The Purdue Foundry is housed in the Convergence Center for Innovation and Collaboration in Discovery Park District, adjacent to the Purdue campus. The Purdue Foundry has been involved with creating more than 300 companies. The Purdue Foundry is managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, which received the 2019 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Award for Place from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. In 2020, IPWatchdog Institute ranked Purdue third nationally in startup creation. For more information about involvement and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org.

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked the No. 5 Most Innovative University in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at purdue.edu.

Jake & Papa

Hailing from Los Angeles, California, brothers, Jake & Papa, bring new heat to the R&B scene. The duo recently released their tracks, “Patient” and “Baby Momma” across streaming platforms. Over the years, the boys have enjoyed regional success with uptempo R&B anthems that can be heard on radio stations across Southern California. “Patient” was discovered by teens on social media as different influencers dance to the track. In addition, a new music video debuted last week on YouTube. The video has garnered over 20K views so far and can be seen here. Stream the single and find more of their music on Spotify

Talk about a musical family background. The Harrell brothers came to the entertainment world at a young age out of a four-generations musical family. At five and six years old, Anthony Harrell and Grady Harrell III (elder brothers of Jake and Papa) joined their first cousin Canela Cox to form the group Papa’s Results, being trained and taught by Grady Harrell II, who was then signed to MCA Records prior to a prison term. The children appeared in his R&B hit single “Sticks and Stone” and Anthony provided the singing voice of “Young Michael Jackson” played by Alex Burell in the 1992 TV mini series, The Jacksons: An American Dream. Papa’s results lasted until Canela moved to Holland to follow her mother’s musical career. The brothers filled her spot with family friend Jeff Lee and changed their name to Serenade. They appeared on episodes of Saved by the Bell: The New Class in 1997, where Anthony played the regular role of Eric Little. As a duet comprising the two Harrell brothers Grady and Anthony, they recorded two independent albums, in 1999 and 2001.

In 2002, Grady and Anthony were joined by their brothers JR, Jake, and Papa and formed Brutha. Papa and Jacob were not raised by their father, as he had been convicted of fraud and was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison. The boys were raised on the music of their inspirations, which ranged from Sam Cooke to Stevie Wonder. Before hitting the “Big Time” they played graduation parties and bar mitzvahs. The band was discovered by Brian Mcknight, who introduced them on the 2003 Soul Train Holiday Special. In 2008, their uncle Donny “Drano” Harrell, CEO of Goodfellas Entertainment, and the late Shakir Stewart, senior vice president of A&R at Island Def Jam, invited the group to Atlanta to do a filmed audition in front of Jermaine Dupri and a range of producers. The audition resulted in a one-hour special entitled Jermaine Dupri presents: Brutha, broadcast on March 24, 2008, on Peachtree TV. Dupri was impressed and signed the brothers to the Island Def Jam Music Group. In 2007, Brutha made a special guest appearance on the Discovery Kids TV show “Hip Hop Harry.”

Since, Jake and Papa, re-invented themselves as a duo project and released two albums, “Athena’s Erotica 2.0” and “Sexual Welfare”. Fans are eager to see what’s next and if another album is on the way.

Follow Jake & Papa on Instagram.

Lanea Tacos and Tequila

Lanea

By Krishan Narsinghani

360 Magazine joined LA’s westside hotspot, Lanea, for an afternoon of taco madness and handcrafted cocktails.

Voted “Best Mexican Food on the Westside” and “Best Cocktail Bar in LA”, Lanea Cocktail and Taco Bar spiced it up for National Taco Day making their to-go options that much easier to pick up to celebrate the delicious holiday. From 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, October 4th, Lanea hosted a Drive-Thru Taco Stand to raise funds for the Santa Monica Firefighters Relief Fund. Customers could walk up or purchase in advance to pick up there order at an easily accessible drive-thru, located in the adjacent alley. There, guests could indulge in their favorite street tacos made to order from Chef Petra herself. Lanea offered free tacos to all firefighters and frontline workers as a courtesy for all their dedication and hard work during these times. Furthermore, the restaurant offered one free taco (of your choice) with the purchase of any hand-crafted cocktail ($9). A portion of all sales from National Taco Day went to the Santa Monica Firefighters Relief Fund.

A number of items at the National Taco Day Drive-Thru were offered including their “Taco & Tequila Happy Hour,” menu which featured tacos starting at $2 and canned or frozen cocktails starting at $9 (regularly $13). Happy hour specials also include $3 Chips & Pico de Gallo, $6 Chips & Guacamole and $4 Consome, which is bone broth with chipotle chickpeas, onion, and cilantro. Pick up their new “Hot Stuff,” homemade 4 oz. hot sauces, Salsa Verde and Salsa Rojo retailing at only $4.99, as well as their premium Tequila and Mezcal “Jet Fuel” Flights. The flights come with a sipping cup copita, sal gusano and an orange slice for your enjoyment. View the full selection of flights here.

Located two blocks from the beach, Lanea is a spirit-driven cocktail bar and restaurant with an extensive variety of over 400 hand-selected mezcals and tequilas. Their authentic Mexican cuisine is prepared by Petra Zavaleta, who hails from Tepeaca, Puebla, and rose to foodie fame with her underground barbacoa pop-ups, and later opened their eatery Barbakush in East L.A. Praised as one of the best Mexican eateries on the Westside, Petra and her family source their lamb locally from Chino Hills and prepare their barbacoa in an earthen pit, cooking it slowly over an open fire. Offering several different styles of classic tacos on their handmade-to-order corn tortillas, as well as chips and guacamole, they are the perfect complement to Lanea’s unique cocktail menu.

“This year has already been a crazy year for us all and the addition of a record breaking pre-start to fire season elevates the stress on our firefighters and frontline workers,” says Lanea Proprietor Peter Trinh. “Petra and I, alongside our other partners, are really thankful and humbled by the local support as we continue to offer a safe, affordable outlet for the local community. So we wanted to do something to help us all band together to support and thank our firefighters and frontline workers further. Please join us on National Taco Day and check out our new to-go small batched canned cocktails, or our handmade gluten-free tacos, and help us support our hard-working firefighters.”

Lanea’s hand-crafted cocktails are still available to-go, and their Summer menu additions are here to stay. Sip on one of their frozen drinks such as the Horchata Colada crafted with Santa Teresa Rum, pineapple, horchata, almond milk and coconut, the Third Street Sling made with Hibiscus Patron Tequila, fresh lemon, passionfruit, and pineapple, or the Jungle Bird Scooter crafted with Vida Mezcal, fresh lemon, ginger, and campari. Starting at only $9, enjoy a variety of signature canned cocktails such as the Paloma made with The Chainsmokers’ JAJA Tequila (must try!) containing grapefruit tonic and Aperol, or the Margarita with Cazadores tequila, fresh lime, demerara, and orange liqueur.

Sweden Tourism Photography Credits to Martin Edström

Visit Sweden’s Healing Through Nature

Lockdowns, isolation, and working from home have caused elevated levels of stress for many people: 45% of Americans say they experience anxiety because of the pandemic, according to a UN report. But there are ways to alleviate the stress. Research shows that spending time in nature lowers stress levels – one of the many benefits of grabbing a few minutes to enjoy some greenery or planning a getaway in the great outdoors.

The positive effects were tested through Visit Sweden’s very own initiative, “The 72-Hour Cabin.” With participants from major cities who had demanding jobs, participants were examined before and after spending three consecutive days in the Swedish countryside where they slept in glass cabins next to water. The study proved that being outdoors surrounded only by nature dramatically reduced negative emotions and lowered stress levels.

In Sweden, 70% of the country is covered with forest, and nature is easy to reach, with open fields and meadows, old-growth forests, quiet lakes, miles of coastlines, and thousands of islands. Swedes have a unique Freedom to Roam, The Right of Public Access (‘Allemansrätt’), which maintains that everyone has the right to walk, cycle, ride, ski and camp on any land. With this, it is no wonder Swedes maintain an unusually close relationship to nature and draw from the healing power of spending time outside.

“Natural environments are an important resource for meeting the health challenges in our society. Research shows that time spent outdoors reduces negative emotions and stress, and promotes positive emotions, mental recovery, and performance,” says Cecilia Stenfors, a researcher at the Aging Research Center at Karolinska Institutet, Sweden, and the University of Chicago, USA.

As nature experiences are an effective way to provide a bit of normality after months of pandemic-related stress, anxiety, and loneliness. Below are five ways to incorporate a bit of green in your life, as illustrated by the Swedes:

  • You only need twenty minutes in nature to reduce stress, so there is no excuse not to pop outside for a few moments, even a lunch time walk will help clear your mind.
  • Boost your mental health by taking your meal outside. Swedes dine al fresco nearly all year round and enjoy foraging in nature’s own pantry. For inspiration, check out Visit Sweden’s outdoor dining and do-it-yourself cooking concept, Edible Country.
  • Enjoy outdoor activities like the Swedes with cooking, hiking, canoeing, and mountain biking, all of which have proven long-lasting effects on their well-being.
  • According to a meta-analysis from the University of East Anglia, published in Environmental Research, nature can lower your blood pressure, cortisol, and heart rate. For those living in cities, even surrounding yourself with indoor plants or even gazing at pictures or videos of nature can be soothing. 
  • When the time is right, book a trip to enjoy Sweden’s lush landscape and stay high up in the Tree Hotel, or experience a glass cabin, house boat, or maybe even a lighthouse.

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Chicago Living

By Krishan Narsinghani

Some call it America’s best fine dining town and others call it the Windy City. Chicago, IL is notorious for its bites and lake breeze, but 360 Magazine believes it’s one of the top cities to move to next.

It’s true that the winters are freezing, but the greater Chicago area has all four seasons and each one exudes a unique beauty. Midwest doesn’t only mean more sunshine and snow, but also affordable living prices and midwestern hospitality (which is important if you don’t already know people in the area). Opinions may vary, but Chi-town is cleaner than most metropolitan cities in the US and Summertime does not disappoint. Relax on the beaches of Lake Michigan or enjoy a nice hand-crafted cocktail at one of the many rooftops. Also explore the rich history and landmarks like The Bean, Navy Pier and Millennium Park – where Lollapalooza is annually held.

First, you need to find where you want to live in the city or outside the city. With over 70 neighborhoods to choose from, movers have tons of options depending on the culture and attractions they want to be associated with. If you’re looking for a superb nightclub scene, River North is your area. West loop is ideal for corporate workers and hot restaurants. West town has new ethnic eateries with wicker park nearby. The list goes on, but every part of Chi has its own vibe and treasures. Getting around the city is easy as public transport isn’t an issue.

In today’s market with COVID-19, it’s harder than ever to find proper living spaces in a major city whilst also budgeting within a reasonable price range. According to Chicago data collected by travel blogger, Lauren Monitz, “The median price for a home listing is $1,750 which is slightly over the national average.” For apartment renting, Zumper’s data showed that the average rent in Logan Square is as low $950 for a studio (and $1,095 across the city overall). Find a roommate and move to The Loop for an average of $2,810 per month. In cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York, the average rent price is significantly higher.

A hidden lifesaver recommended for individuals looking to jumpstart their move is a platform called Zumper. Zumper is used by millions of renters to find houses, rooms, condos, or apartments for rent. It’s as simple as applying online. Submit digital rental applications and credit reports with their screening service, powered by TransUnion™. We’ve all tried to use countless rent/housing websites, but Zumper’s site maximizes quality. The inventory is updated in real-time, so users always see new rentals first. Try filtering by location, price range, bedroom count, pet-friendly, or amenity and set an alert to get notifications when a new listing is posted.

It’s always hard to take that first step and find the perfect place. Using websites and apps to navigate searches help legitimize you traveling in-person to visit a new home. It will also save energy if you aren’t wasting time on sites that don’t filter new apartments and homes, plus alerts to keep you in the know. Overall, Chicago has made a mark on our staff. It’s safe to say it’s one of the top cities in the US to live in.

Get The Most Money Selling Your Car

Sales is not everyone’s strong suit, and used car sales has its own stigma. But with the right preparation, you can have the confidence you need to get the most money selling your car. Here are a few strategic tips you can use when selling a used vehicle, no matter the kind or condition. 

Preventative Care

Getting the most out of your car in the future begins with how you take care of it today. Preventative care like regular oil changes and safe driving will help you get the most return when it comes time to sell your car.

  • Oil Change – Motor oil keeps your engine in proper working condition by lubricating its moving parts. This protective barrier also regulates engine temperature and prevents corrosion, which could lead to very dangerous and expensive damage that will show up on your vehicle history report.
  • Keep Clean – It may not seem like it, but keeping your car clean will help with your resale value. Taking your car through a touch-free car wash on a regular basis will help prevent paint from fading and could even prevent rust.
  • Safe Driving – A bit of a no brainer, but accidents dramatically decrease the value of your car. Even when repaired, a car that has been repaired following an accident is a red flag on the vehicle history report. Even if the outside looks good, the buyer has no way of knowing any residual effects of the accident and may choose to avoid the risk all together.

Prep for Success

Curb appeal applies to cars as much as it does homes. Getting more money for your vehicle can be as simple as cleaning it up and taking good photos. Prep your car, inside and out, for eye-catching photos from every angle including detailed shots. Wait for a nice day with optimum lighting and drive to a place with ambiance such as a park, atop a parking garage with the skyline in the background, or even just the side of a building with a clean wall. Don’t forget to eliminate distractions like garbage from the area. Great photos of a detailed car will naturally attract more attention and likely get you more cash in the end.

Getting more money for your vehicle can be as simple as cleaning it up and taking good photos. Great photos of a detailed car will naturally attract more attention and likely get you more cash in the end.

Transparency

After you’ve cleaned and photographed your car, put together a consolidated write up. You could even provide your own copy of the vehicle history report. Whether you’re sharing online or in-person, offering as much information as possible gives car buyers confidence that you’re not trying to hide anything. This transparency creates a foundation of trust which will help you secure your ideal asking price.

Understanding Value

Understanding the value of your car is the next step in getting the most out of it. The last thing you want is a situation where the buyer knows more about your car than you do. If you don’t know enough about the value of your car you could either undersell yourself or let someone talk you out of what your car is truly worth. Do a little research and look into pricing across sites such as Kelly Blue Book, Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, and local dealerships.

Key Factors

There are a few primary factors that determine the value of your car, though some of the details can be subjective. The vehicle’s mileage and condition are two standing factors no matter the make or model. The value of your car based on its year is somewhat relative. Typically, the newer the better, unless your buyer is a collector or there have been recalls associated with the year of your car. The make and model can be somewhat subjective because buyers desire different cars for different reasons (ie. electric, luxury, comfort, size). Ask yourself why you bought the car in the first place. 

Other factors that affect the value of your car:

  1. Owner Care
  2. Number of Owners
  3. Stock Accessories
  4. Aftermarket Upgrades

Unique Factors

Throughout the time you’ve owned the car, you’ve undoubtedly made some changes to fit your lifestyle. Have you added a roof rack to haul snowboards or mountain bikes? Did you add navigation and update the stereo equipment for a better road trip experience? Did you lift your truck and add bigger tires? These things can increase the value of your car.

Opportunity Factors

Something to keep in mind when you’re prepping to sell is demand. Today’s car market is unique. While many are working from home and driving less, Americans are much more inclined to own a personal vehicle to avoid public transportation. Furthermore, the cost of gasoline and climate change campaigns are inspiring drivers to reduce their carbon footprint. Both of these factors make electric and hybrid vehicles more attractive.

Something to keep in mind when you’re prepping to sell is demand. As more people are inspired to do their part in helping the environment, electric and hybrid vehicles have been more attractive to prospective car buyers.

Negotiating & Wiggle Room

Now that you’ve prepped, photographed, and posted your car for sale, it’s time to gear up for negotiating. Selling privately through sites like Craigslist, eBay or Facebook Marketplace will get you the most for your car. If you have the right connections, you may be able to park your car with a for sale sign in a high-traffic area to attract potential buyers. When you sell to a dealership, they have to plan for overhead, profit, and commissions. This means the purchase price needs to leave enough room for markup and less money for you.

If you’ve researched similar vehicles for sale in your area, as well as the appropriate value for your car based on the factors mentioned above, the final tip for getting the most money for your car is to include a little wiggle-room in the asking price for negotiating. For example, if your car is valued around $10,000 and nearby dealerships are selling the same vehicle for $9,000 to $12,000, consider listing your car with an asking price in that range, but $2,000 above your ideal sale price. Wise buyers will always make an initial offer below asking price, and if you have a cushion for negotiating, you should be able to offer a competitive rate that still gets you the most money for your car.

Your Trade-In is Someone Else’s Treasure

Whether you’re retiring a hand-me-down clunker or you’re growing from sports car to SUV, there is a buyer who will find what they need in what you’re selling. Getting the most money for your used car simply requires a little cleaning, research, and strategic negotiating. In the end, if the sale isn’t as important as your time, you can always donate your car to nonprofits like The Salvation Army or Habitat for Humanity, who are helping individuals and families rebuild their lives.

Brain Cancer illustrated by Mina Tocalini for 360 MAGAZINE.

Cancer Discovery Reveals Key Process in Tumor Formation

A discovery from the University of Virginia School of Medicine may open the door to an entirely new approach to treating cancer: by disrupting a vital condensation process inside cancer cells.

Researchers led by Hao Jiang, PhD, of UVA’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, discovered that cancer cells are exceptionally dependent on the proper condensation of a particular protein, AKAP95, during tumor formation. Blocking this process halted the cancer cells in their tracks.

“It is now clear that biomolecular condensation is a fundamental mechanism that underlies numerous biological processes in normal physiology and also in human disease including cancer,” said Jiang, of UVA’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics and the UVA Cancer Center. “Our work reveals a new level of regulation – how liquid-like the condensates are can affect their activity in cancer control.”

Cancer and Condensation

The process of “biomolecular condensation” inside our cells is an area of great interest for scientists. In essence, our cells use condensation to create little compartments for important biological processes. You might think of these compartments as virtual mixing bowls that cells manufacture as needed.

It has been largely unclear if this condensation process is important in cancer. Jiang and his team showed that both the formation of the condensates and their material properties are important for cancer, and their work suggests that disrupting condensation or changing the condensate properties may offer a new treatment strategy.

The researchers’ lab experiments show that the AKAP95 protein gets condensed in cells, and cancer cells become heavily reliant on it. For that to happen, the condensed proteins, which are liquid-like, must be just the right consistency. Hardening them, for example, significantly impaired tumor formation, Jiang and his team discovered. Disrupting the condensation process halted cancer formation entirely.

A treatment based on the discovery might take a similar approach. Disrupting the condensation of AKAP95, the research suggests, could prevent cancer from hijacking our cells.

While much more work needs to be done to determine the possibility of developing a treatment based on the discovery, Jiang is happy to have shed light on tumor formation and to have provided cancer researchers a new avenue to explore.

“I was completely enthralled by this mechanism, as I had never learned or thought of such a seemingly simple principle of molecular organization in textbooks, previous classes or training, but it actually makes great sense and has such a profound impact on almost all basic cellular activities. My lab is thus very interested in how biomolecular condensation regulates gene expression on various levels, especially in the context of cancer,” Jiang said. “Further studies in this field will likely provide us unconventional strategies in cancer treatment.”

Findings Published

The researchers have published their findings in the scientific journal Nature Cell Biology. The research team consisted of Wei Li, Jing Hu, Bi Shi, Francesco Palomba, Michelle A. Digman, Enrico Gratton and Jiang.

The research was supported by startup funds from UVA and the University of Alabama at Birmingham, along with Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program Breakthrough Award BC190343. The work used the confocal microscopy system at UVA’s Keck Center that was supported by National Institutes of Health grant OD016446.

Jiang was supported by the American Society of Hematology Scholar Award, the American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award (RSG-15-166-01-DMC) and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Scholar Award (1354-19). Palomba and Digman were supported in part by National Science Foundation grant MCB-1615701. Digman and Gratton were supported by NIH grant P41-GM103540.

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