Starting at age 16 – How to become a millionaire with only $16 a day.

💥💥 Teens: Starting at age 16 – How to become a millionaire with only $16 a day. 💥💥

This video was recorded before COVID-19 Coronavirus downturn in the stock market. The information presented is STILL VALID as long as you invest for the long term!

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We all know that Social Security and pensions are not guaranteed to us when we retire, this means it is up to you to build the wealth you desire. 

No one wants to live out their final year’s poor, so in this video I will show you how to retire a millionaire with the money you need to live a comfortable life.

So just how much money are we talking about?  How about starting with over $1.6 million dollars in your retirement funds with an initial investment of less than $20 per day.  Plus, if you stick through to the very end of the video, I will give you a bonus tip that can more than TRIPLE this.

But first, now that I have your attention, please hit the like & subscribe buttons. Doing so helps push the YouTube algorithm to show this video to more and more people. Also, we need to get the legal mumbo-jumbo out of the way: I am not a certified financial advisor, nor an accountant, nor a tax lawyer, and everything I say here is for “entertainment purposes only” so don’t sue me, ok?

For my calculations I am presuming you started at age 16 with your first part time job.  But honestly you can start this at any age and STILL MAKE A GREAT improvement in your retirement lifestyle.

(confused: math calculations video start)

So, let’s take $16 per day and allocate this to a Roth IRA, based upon historical averages of a 7% return, by time you are 59 ½ your investment of $264k total should be worth approximately $1.6 MILLION TAX FREE!

I am sure you are like “whoa, wait . . . what??”.

(bookend with train crash sequence after I say my line above)

Don’t worry I will explain all of this to you!

Throughout the years, of course, you paid your normal income taxes on the $264,000 you invested. 

All of your profit from your investments is tax free courtesy of Uncle Sam. 

Depending on your tax rate not only did you earn 1.3 million dollars through your investment, you saved over $900,000 of that in taxes! 

Using this simple Roth IRA strategy means you have $1.6 million dollars tax-free sitting in your account, not $700,000 after taxes.

What is an IRA?

Ok, so I keep saying “Roth IRA” in this video, what exactly am I talking about? 

First, an Individual Retirement Account (commonly referred to as an IRA) is specialized bank account with tax saving benefits when you invest for your retirement.  You have a lot of flexibility in what you “invest” in with your IRA, but for beginners a wide-ranging market cap fund would be best.  Check out my video how to invest in the stock market, link in the description box below.

Ok, now back to IRAs themselves.  Within the umbrella of IRA there are two primary types of IRAs that we will cover today:  Roth IRA and Traditional IRA.

At their core both of these IRAs function about the same.  Currently, if you are less than 50 years old, you can contribute a maximum of $6,000 per year to an IRA account. 

The key difference between a Traditional IRA and a Roth IRA is how you are taxed.

A Roth IRA is often referred to as a tax-advantaged retirement account. What I mean by this is the money you deposit, called contributions, to a Roth IRA are made after your payroll taxes are paid for that year. 

Then any profits you make from your investment grows tax-free. As long as you follow the rules for Roth IRA distributions, you’ll pay NO income tax when you take your money out in retirement.

Whereas a Traditional IRA is tax deferred.  What I mean by this is you do not pay any income taxes today on your contributions in a Traditional IRA, but when you withdraw money in your retirement years you PAY TAXES at that time.

As you can see from this chart, based upon our working example you can withdraw about $2,500/month from your IRA when you retire. 

You will notice that by using a Roth IRA vs a Traditional RIA you will save over half a million dollars in the long run based upon today’s tax rates.

You might be a little confused, and that is fine.  Let me give a very simple explanation, please note these numbers are not all inclusive.  Do not focus on the exact numbers here, I picked them for easy math so everyone can follow along.  The key is the concept behind Roth IRA that I want you to understand.

EX: If you made $10,000 at your job, depending on where you live in the country the tax man will take about 20% of that to pay both federal and state taxes.  This leave you with $8,000 left over, right? 

Now if you take all of that $8,000 and invest it into a tax advantaged account like a Roth IRA.  If you do NOTHING and leave that $8k in, you would have approximately $120k after 40 years. 

Ok, ok, I know a lot of numbers.  But stick with me because this is important. 

You have already paid your taxes 40-years ago when you invested your $8,000, remember you paid $2,000 to the tax man, right?  That’s all the taxes you pay.  All of your profit, the $120k is now tax free.

But, if instead of using a Roth IRA you invested in a Traditional IRA or a regular brokerage investment, again you would have the same $120k after 40 years, but here is the part that really sucks. 

Now you owe taxes on the full $120k, even if your tax bracket stayed the same that is $24,000 you owe to Uncle Sam.  Sucks, huh?

More important, today we are at historically low income-tax rates and no matter what your political view is, you can reasonably predict that in the future the tax rates will rise. 

Back to our $16 a day investment example; “Biting the bullet” now and paying today’s tax rate should save you even more than $562k if income tax rates rise by time you retire on your $1.5 million-dollar Roth IRA account.

So now, not only are you a millionaire, you also saved over $500k in unnecessary taxes.

Bonus facts

As a thank you for staying through to the end of the video.  If your employer offers a SIMPLE IRA retirement plan with matching you would be a fool not to take it. 

While not tax-advantaged like a Roth IRA, a SIMPLE IRA is tax-deferred.  I know, I know, I just spent the first part of the video explaining why a Roth is the best option.  But stick with me as there is a reason for this. 

YOU CAN DO BOTH!

Basically, a SIMPLE IRA is a Traditional IRA that you contribute money and more importantly your employer matches your contributions each year.  So, if you put $5,000 in there, your employer could contribute another $5,000 as well.  Instantly doubling your money!

You can invest up to $13,500 per year into a SIMPLE IRA. 

Following the same investment strategy as you did with your Roth IRA, in 41 years the contributed $570k plus your profits could value this account at approx. $3.4 million.

Best of all, remember you only invested half of the SIMPLE IRA money, your employer gave the other half (approx. $285,000).

Add both of your accounts together and you get a combined that is $4.5 MILLION DOLLARS between your SIMPLE IRA and Roth IRA when you retire.  Not bad huh?

But, wait . . . what if my employer does not offer a SIMPLE IRA? 

Well, you could find a better job, or better yet, start your own company and have full control over your destiny. 

Want me to make a video on how to start your own business?  Comment below and let me know!

Obviously starting these investments as early as you can in your life and sticking to it will return the best financial results.  If you only invest for a few weeks, then “give up on it” you will barely have enough money to buy a few McDonalds BigMacs. 

Trust me and learn from my own foolish mistake.  When I was 16, my parents helped me setup an IRA, and like an idiot, a few years later I cashed it all out, loosing almost half of it to tax penalties, all because I wanted some new computer gear.  

It wouldn’t be until my 30s before I finally started an IRA up again and because of this I have lost nearly half a million dollars of potential earnings.  DO NOT BE STUPID, invest for the long term, and when you retire you will thank yourself for it.

Now that I showed you how to retire with $4.5 million, how about you smash the like button so hard you break the glass on your phone?

⚠️ ⚠️ ⚖️⚖️
In closing a quick statement: I am not a lawyer, CPA, tax advisor, realtor, financial advisor, etc., etc., I have absolutely no licenses/certifications in anything related to these industries, I am just a dude on the internet. So, in full disclosure: the information I provide here is for “entertainment purposes only” and you should seek counsel from competent and certified individuals if you have questions.

SBA COVID-19 Stimulus $10,000 Grant EIDL #Fail

💥💥 SBA COVID-19 Stimulus $10,000 Grant EIDL #Fail 💥💥

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https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USSBA/bulletins/284f240

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/748/text?loclr=bloglaw

Before I get to that: first, a quick disclaimer. While I did concentrate heavily on this in school, I have not taken the bar, and I am most definitely not a lawyer. This is not legal advice and is for entertainment purposes only. Think of this as a friendly conversation between friends, we are friends, right?

Also, this was recorded on Tuesday, April 7th and is based on the most current information I could find. This is a fluid subject, and, of course, may have changed by the time you watch this video.

As many of you know the US Congress passed H.R.748 the “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act” AKA the “CARES Act”.

Included in this act, among many other things, is an emergency grant to help small businesses weather the storm. As many have already reported here on YouTube and on national media, the verbiage in the act strongly suggests each small business that meets the criteria will receive a grant of $10,000.

SEC. 1110. Emergency EIDL grants: subsection (e) (1) [a small business] ‘may request that the Administrator provide an advance that is, subject to paragraph (3), in the amount requested by such applicant to such applicant within 3 days after the Administrator receives an application from such applicant. ‘

It first starts by saying “may request” and this is actually the biggest key in this section. A business “may request … an advance”

This does not say the SBA will award the advance, only that you as the business owner may ask for it.

Moving on to the next block that confuses people in this sentence “subject to paragraph (3),
in the amount requested by such applicant”

What the heck does this mean? Well, first, we need to read paragraph 3. It says:
‘(3) AMOUNT.—The amount of an advance provided under this subsection shall be not more than $10,000.’

So, ok, we know that the amount cannot be MORE than $10,000.
This means the business owner can request any amount he or she feels in necessary, as long as the amount does not exceed $10,000.

Now, let’s finish the last part of the sentence that is confusing a lot of people “within 3 days after the Administrator receives an application”
Many have misinterpreted this to mean you will receive your money within 3-days. However, if you break down the sentence it only says: the business owner may request an advance within three days of an application being received.

I fully agree this is a poorly written sentence that is easily misinterpreted, but in my humble opinion and once again I’m just a dude on the internet, and we are just friends shooting the shit; this sentence really means the following:

Within 3-days of the SBA Administrator receiving your application, you may ask the SBA to kindly advance up-to $10,000 of your loan.

It does not say anywhere that the SBA WILL give you the advance, nor does it say it will give you the full amount, nor does it mention a timeline for actually receiving the money.

In summary, they say, the grant will be awarded thusly:
$1,000 per employee, up to $10,000.

SBA currently says that money is expected to start being distributed this week.

The CARES act says “An applicant shall not be required to repay any amounts of an advance provided under this subsection, even if subsequently denied a loan under section 7(b)(2) of the Small Business Act “

So, this would strongly suggest, that you are free to keep any money advanced to you as a grant and you are not obligated to pay it back. However, if you do take the EIDL loan, it appears the remainder of the loan must be paid back in full.

While not providing you advice, once-again, just chatting with friends here. But you might be best served to take the grant and to refuse the loan.

DO NOT confuse this with the ‘Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Loan’. The previous information is only for the EIDL loan program. Yes, I know, confusing, but come on, when has the government ever done something that wasn’t at least a little bit confusing.

Let me know if you want me to make a video covering the PPP program as well.

⚠️ ⚠️ ⚖️⚖️
In closing a quick statement: I am not a lawyer, CPA, tax advisor, realtor, financial advisor, etc., etc., I have absolutely no licenses/certifications in anything related to these industries, I am just a dude on the internet. So, in full disclosure: the information I provide here is for “entertainment purposes only” and you should seek counsel from competent and certified individuals if you have questions.

About Steven Carlson

💥💥 About Steven Carlson 💥💥

💰💰2 Free Stocks valued up to $1,400 👉 https://www.stevencarlson.show/@WeBull
📔📔 America Hijacked: How Deep State Actors from LBJ to Obama Killed for Power and Money
👉 https://amzn.to/2BWQ97T

Sorry for the bad focus on the camera, but at least the plant is focused 🙂

After returning to civilian life from the US Navy, I moved back to my hometown of Tampa Bay, Florida, and I began working with a group of foreclosure flippers as an errand boy and notary. Over a 6-month period I learned all of the ins and outs of foreclosures, lis pendens, surplus collection, skip tracing, and more.

I will not name names, but these guys were most definitely not the most ethical businessmen in the world. In fact, they were down-right crooks and a few of them have since gone to prison.

One of their 2-bed/2-bath condo rentals had recently been discovered to have major structural issues to the entire building, affecting multiple units, and this would make it difficult for them to continue to rent it.

There was a pending lawsuit against the construction company that built all of the buildings. I also knew that the construction company was choosing to quickly settle instead of taking it to trial. With this knowledge, I knew the structural issues would be handled quickly and with little expense.

Armed with my savvy research, I kept the condo and after living in it for just over a year, I sold it for nearly $120k.

During the next three years, I acquired, repaired, and sold over 150 single-family residences. At the peak, I had a crew of 17 working for me fixing these homes and multiple investors behind me that bankrolled the deals.

I specialized in the more challenging to acquire properties and left the low-margin, low hanging fruit for the less experienced wannabe investors. Many of my deals required tracking down the heirs of estates, the estranged spouse of a homeowner, incarcerated individuals, etc. and I became very skilled in tracking people down when they did not want to be found.

Many of these deals I would acquire in lis pendens or “pre-foreclosure” status for $5-$10k cash that I would give to the homeowner. Add in $10-$15k in cleaning/fixing up the house and I would sell the house within 45-days. With most deals profiting me $15-20k.

Many times I wouldn’t even catch make the past-due payments on the mortgage current, as I knew the courts were so backed up in foreclosure cases, I had 2-3 months to sell the house before the courthouse auction. Of course, when I flipped the house, all past-due mortgages would be paid in full at closing.

During this time, I did very well financially, however, I was still a bit of a dumb 20 something dude and put a little too much time (and money) into nights out at the clubs with beautiful young ladies. I thought the real estate market would continue forever, and I missed the warning signs.

For the next few months, I lived on his mother’s unfished back-porch as we started our tech company stockNum Systems. The floors where bare plywood, the windows, and doors fully hung and allowed the bitter Virginia winter cold air to flow through the room at night. It was like camping, but with a real roof to at least keep the rain & snow off.

This was when I decided to get back into real estate, but this time I had the knowledge and experience to guide me. I would no longer buy, fix, and flip properties, no, this time, I was keeping my properties and renting them out.

The big issue with flips is you get all your money in one shot, and you must immediately go out and buy a new property, fix it up and sell it. There was no way to scale it. If you wanted to increase your income that month, you needed to do more deals and it was really hard to do more than 3 or 4 deals a month.

Of course, I do not wish to gloss over the fact there is on-going maintenance and carrying costs associated with keeping a property, but in the grand scheme of things, this is a far better model for long term financial success and growth.

Of course, I do have a few affiliate links in my videos that I hope you will use and maybe, one day, I might choose to monetize this channel in other ways. Either path I take, know that the goal is and always will be to give you guys the best advice possible.

⚠️ ⚠️ ⚖️⚖️
In closing a quick statement: I am not a lawyer, CPA, tax advisor, realtor, financial advisor, etc., etc., I have absolutely no licenses/certifications in anything related to these industries, I am just a dude on the internet. So, in full disclosure: the information I provide here is for “entertainment purposes only” and you should seek counsel from competent and certified individuals if you have questions.

In the words of another great Youtuber, @ MeetKevin, #DontSueMeBro

How I made an extra $700/week in US Navy RTC Boot Camp

💥💥 How I made an extra $700/week in US Navy RTC Boot Camp 💥💥

💰💰2 Free Stocks valued up to $1,400 👉 https://www.stevencarlson.show/@WeBull

📔📔 America Hijacked: How Deep State Actors from LBJ to Obama Killed for Power and Money
👉 https://amzn.to/2BWQ97T

It was the summer of 2002 and I was in Navy RTC, from the moment I stepped my foot off the white buses into Camp Moffett, it was a huge cultural shock for me.

As I am sure you can guess bootcamp is very restrictive; you are told what to do, and when to do it and you are not allowed any candy, soda, cigarettes, etc.

I have always been an entrepreneur at heart, looking to make a buck and in bootcamp I found the perfect opportunity to make an extra $500 cash per week, adjusted for inflation 18 years later that is about $700 in 2020 dollars.

Very quickly I learned how things worked at bootcamp and found a little loophole in the security.

To make this very long story short, at the time, recruits wore one type of uniform referred to as utilities and graduated sailors wore their working whites.

I discovered if I put on my working whites uniform, the MAA which is the Navy’s version of Military Police, would let me walk right out the main gates of boot camp, and I could walk right into the gates of the main naval base down the street.

From there I could go to the Navy Exchange, purchase whatever items my fellow recruits wanted and smuggle it back into bootcamp. Selling each item at a hefty profit. Of course, getting caught would be very bad, in fact, I did get caught, and it is a very funny story how, while being honorable and accepting my punishment. I was able to use my wits to reduce the outcome of my punishment, but that is a story for another video.

Sound off in the comments below and tell me how brilliant or stupid my actions were, of course, I know I wasn’t the first to figure this out, and I sure as heck wasn’t the last.

For any of you that think you will be cute and do the same. I’ve heard the Navy has locked things down much more, so new recruits may not have the same abilities to wonder on and off the base as we did.

Now for those of you that have stayed, here are some tips to maximize your finances while in boot camp. This works for Navy, Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, and Marines.

Depending on your contract you will enter bootcamp at a paygrade of either E1 through to E3 and current 2020 military pay grades show you will earn between $1,600 and $2,000 per month. Of course, the military takes almost all of your first paycheck to cover “personal items” you are issued like shampoo, razors, tennis shoes, etc. Excluding this first paycheck, you are paid at least $50 per day for a 30 day month.

With this $50 a day I suggest you take at least $10 per day, preferable if you can take $16 per day and allocating this to a Roth IRA. At the end of your 6-year commitment to the US Military you will have invested $42,000 towards your retirement, even better, based upon historical averages of 7% growth per year you will actually have almost $52,000. That is $10,000 for free.

That is only the beginning. If you continue this until age 60 you will have invested just under $250,000, but and here is the great part . . . your investment will be worth approximately $1.4 MILLION.

This isn’t even the best part of the advice. Throughout the years you paid your normal income taxes on the $250,000 each year, the remainder of your $1.4 million is tax-free courtesy of uncle sam.

For more details on exactly how a Roth IRA works, check out my video on IRAs. The link is in the description box.

Now back to how to make this work for boot camp recruits. Prior to leaving for boot camp I highly recommend you get a checking account and IRA setup. You can use any bank you wish, but I do recommend USAA or US Navy Federal Credit Union as they are able to offer additional benefits to military personnel.

Whichever you choose make sure you bring your account numbers and routing information for both checking and your IRA with you to bootcamp.

There are VERY FEW personal items you can keep with you, but they will let you keep your banking info on a small piece of paper.

Then on one of the first few days of boot camp, they will sit down with you to get that information so your paychecks are direct deposited correctly.

Once you setup your direct deposit, it will be automatic and you do not need to worry about it. Get back to focusing on training and finishing Boot Camp.

⚠️ ⚠️ ⚖️⚖️
In closing a quick statement: I am not a lawyer, CPA, tax advisor, realtor, financial advisor, etc., etc., I have absolutely no licenses/certifications in anything related to these industries, I am just a dude on the internet. So, in full disclosure: the information I provide here is for “entertainment purposes only” and you should seek counsel from competent and certified individuals if you have questions.

How I made $1,200 in 1-hour

💥💥 How I made $1,200 in 1-hour 💥💥

💰💰2 Free Stocks valued up to $1,400 👉 https://www.stevencarlson.show/@WeBull

💰💰 Chase Link https://www.stevencarlson.show/@ChaseChecking

📔📔 America Hijacked: How Deep State Actors from LBJ to Obama Killed for Power and Money
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My first step was to go to Chase Bank’s website (https://www.stevencarlson.show/@ChaseChecking) and request a promotional code, a link is in the description below.

Sadly, this part only works if you are not an existing Chase Bank customer, if you already have a banking relationship with them you are not able to take advantage of this program, but do not worry, stay to the end of the video as I still have additional tips that work for you.

Additionally, many other banks offer very similar programs, like TD Bank, etc. Check with your local bank as they might be able to match or even beat this promotion from Chase.

Once you have your Chase promotional coupon code, you have two options. You can go to your local Chase bank branch location or open your account completely online.

Chase offers you $200 to open a new Chase Total Checking as long as you set up a direct deposit from your employer.

After you open your account make sure you follow ALL OF THE RULES to get your bonus and to avoid monthly service fees. If you go in person they will give you a printout showing you exactly what rules you need to follow. Make sure you read this carefully as they may have changed the rules after I made this video.

For me, the rules were simple. I must make at least $500 in total payroll direct deposits each month during the first three months. After three months they will automatically deposit your $200 into your checking account in about 2-weeks.

It is also important that you avoid their monthly service fees. You can do this by either #1 maintaining your direct deposits of at least $500 per month, or #2 keep a daily balance of at least $1,500 in your checking.

There is also technically a third option, if you are current or prior US Military they waive the monthly service fee. NOTE: the military waiver does not wave the direct deposit requirements to get your $200 bonus, only the requirements to keep the account service fee-free.

For me, it took about 20 minutes to get my personal accounts setup, so now you either have made $200 or $350. Not bad, but we still have more money to make.

Chase also offers a $500 bonus for opening a business checking account. This is very similar to the personal account process. You need a coupon code (link below in the description), but here you need to make a deposit of $2,500 and maintain that for 90-days, plus you need to make at least 5 “qualifying transactions” – these can be using your debit card, using the mobile app to scan deposit checks, etc.

You will need to bring your business formation documents, usually an Articles of Incorporation or an Operating Agreement for an LLC, and your Federal Tax EIN number.

But what if you do not have a business? Well, you should, but no worries, it is a pretty easy process.

Should I make a video showing you how to start your own business in less than an hour? If so, comment below and I will.

Back to the Chase promo. They also offer a bonus for opening a business Ink credit card as well. This is an additional $500 bonus.

Collectively opening all of my Chase accounts took about 45 minutes, most of the time the Personal Banker was typing away at his computer. While I sat there I did one last thing to make another $15 and this is a bonus tip that works even if you do not want to open Chase accounts.

I opened a Webull stock trading account on my iPhone. Once my account was set up and funded they gave me two free stocks.

In my case, my two free stocks were 1-share of Investors Bancorp a bank located in New Jersey, this stock is up almost 1% already. The second stock was Groupon, sadly in this case the stock is down about 2% this week, but that is all part of the stock market game. Either way, both stocks were totally free!

The stocks they give you are randomly selected and value between $2 – $1,400 each. Maybe someone with more luck than me will get more than $15.

⚠️ ⚠️ ⚖️⚖️
In closing a quick statement: I am not a lawyer, CPA, tax advisor, realtor, financial advisor, etc., etc., I have absolutely no licenses/certifications in anything related to these industries, I am just a dude on the internet. So, in full disclosure: the information I provide here is for “entertainment purposes only” and you should seek counsel from competent and certified individuals if you have questions.

Top 5 Credit Cards for College Students in 2020

💥💥 Top 5 Credit Cards for College Students in 2020 💥💥

💰🆓2 Free Stocks valued up to $1,400 👉 https://www.stevencarlson.show/@WeBull

📔📔 America Hijacked: How Deep State Actors from LBJ to Obama Killed for Power and Money
👉 https://amzn.to/2BWQ97T

In this video, we are going to go over the top 5 credit cards for college students in 2020.

Some of the cards I will go over today give between 1-10% cashback on eligible purchases, but that is completely useless if you keep a balance on the cards and pay 15 to 25% or more in interest.

As long as you pay the full amount before the due date, you will pay no interest, and you still get to take advantage of all of the rewards programs credit cards offer.

You also get the added benefit of building your creditworthiness, which will help you when you go to purchase your first house, lower your car insurance premium, and so much more.

It may even improve your odds of getting a more lucrative job, yes, that is right. Some industries will run a credit check on you during the interview phase, and if you have bad credit this could be a disqualifying factor in hiring you.

So now that we have cleared that up, as a first-time credit card holder, what should you look for?

Most important in your first few cards is no annual fee, remember part of your overall credit score is calculated on how long your credit history is.

So it is best to keep your credit cards open for years or decades if possible. Cards with high annual fees are hard to justify keeping for 10-15 years. A card that has no annual fee is easy for you to keep open even after you “out-grow” it for your daily use.

Before we get to the list, please hit the like & subscribe buttons. Doing so helps so much with the YouTube algorithm to show this video to more and more people. Thanks, and now to the list.

✅ #5 State Farm Bank Student Visa Credit Card

✅ #4 Citi Rewards+ Student Card

✅#3 Journey Student Rewards from Capital One

✅ #2 & #1 Discover it Student Cash Back Card and the Discover it Student Chrome Card.

These cards are by far my favorite cards for those just starting to build credit.

The Cash Back card offers 5% cashback on everyday purchases in a rotating category each quarter like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations, select rideshares, and online shopping. The only downside is they limit your 5% to a specific category like “dining” or “fuel,” which may limit your reward protentional. Then all other purchases get outside that bonus category gets 1% cashback automatically.

So if you spend most of your money in one specific category, then the 5% may be best for you.

If you do not want to be limited to a specific category, you may be better off with the Student Chrome card. You will lose the “5% bonus”, but what you lose there you gain by doubling all other purchases to 2% instead of 1%. All without keeping track of categories.

Whichever card you choose, Discover will DOUBLE your cashback rewards for the first year.

Plus, if you are a good student and keep your GPA above 3.0, they will give you $20 statement credit each year for a maximum of 5 years.

Like all other cards on this list, there are no annual fees. Unlike some of the others, they give you a one-time forgivingness on the first late payment. But we know you will NEVER be late on your card payment, right! Right?

You can even monitor your FICO score free of charge with this card via their online portal.

Then to top all this off you get 0% APR for your first six months, then a variable APR starting at 19.49% Of course, because you are never leaving a balance on the card you SHOULD NEVER PAY INTEREST ANYWAYS.

The only downside is fewer merchants accept Discover than VISA or Mastercard, but aside from that, you cannot go wrong with this card.


No matter which card you choose as your first credit card, make sure you follow the requirements to maximize your reward points. Some cards require you to charge $3,000 in the first three months; others do not. Just pay attention to the rules.

Of course, as I said at the beginning of this video, only charge purchases that you can afford to pay off at the end of each month and DO NO CARY A BALANCE.

Use your card responsibly and after three months, request a credit limit increase on your first card and then apply for a second with another bank. Repeat this process every 4-6 months and watch your credit score build quickly to 750+

If you found this information useful please like this video and subscribe to my channel, it really helps with the YouTube algorithm.

Why I’m Leaving Rackspace Hosting for AWS

Rackspace is an American based web hosting company that, for many years, was touted as the premier managed web server hosting provider. They have never been “cheap”; however, in my opinion, you received far more than what you paid for, and their tech support was second to none. I guess that is why they previously branded themselves under the motto of “Fanatical Support.”

One of the tech startups I co-founded has been a Rackspace customer for a little over ten years now. In the beginning, we started with a single dedicated webserver, adding a dedicated Cisco firewall soon after. Within a year or so, we had outgrown our simple single webserver and upgraded and expanded throughout the years into multiple dedicated webservers to handle our needs.

As Rackspace expanded its product lines to cloud servers, email box hosting, and MongoDB services, we quickly signed up and increased our monthly financial commitment to them. I know we were never their largest customer by any means; however, in 2019, I have spent just over $82,966, so we are not their smallest customer either.  

For many years we loved our service and happily (as happy as you can be to ever pay a bill) paid each month. Then . . . a few years ago, something happened. It is hard to put an exact date on when the change occurred; things were not the same as years past.  

At first, the tech support would take a little longer to get back with you. Gone were the 20-minute support ticket replies; now it would be an hour or two before they emailed you back. Not usually a problem, but still a little annoying. Then I started to notice that on the weekends or late at nights, you were lucky if you heard anything back on your support ticket. You just accepted the fact that you had to wait until regular business hours to get a reply.

Many of the server techs that I knew by name, the same guys (and gals) that also knew my systems intimately; all disappeared, replaced with inexperienced technicians that were only barely a step above “did you plug in the computer?” level of support. Each time I chatted or spoke on the phone, I would have to explain everything in explicit detail and almost guide them along on how to do their job. I could no longer rely on them being the expert.

Things started to get worse, but we stuck with it.

Even with the less than stellar level of support, it was just easier to leave our webservers in place, upgrade them as needed, but not to make any drastic switches, as doing so would be a considerable project.

Back in 2015, our servers were hit with a distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS attack) which took our websites, and the websites of our customers offline. The attack was intermittent and would come in waves of 2-3 minute attacks every 30 minutes to an hour or so. This gave just enough time for the webserver to come back online and let customers login, then bam, it was taken offline again.

After about a day of this on again off again DDoS, one of the Rackspace reps recommended a premium service they offered called ‘DDoS Mitigation.’ This premium service was an additional $1,500 per month and was like an insurance policy, “you hope you never need it, but if you do, it is there for you.” They explained their mitigation service was continually monitoring my servers 24x7x365. If another DDoS attack came in, they would react instantly to redirect the malicious traffic away from our infrastructure, keeping our network up for our customers.

We signed up for the service and moved on with life. Luckily for us, we went another three years without a single DDoS attack. We knew we were paying $1,500 a month for the service and haven’t used it, but it was an investment in the peace of mind knowing our servers would stay online, and our customer’s websites would not go down.

The Final Straw

Now we flash forward to Aug 2019; by this time, we have had the DDoS mitigation service for about three years and spent about $54,000 in total just on the DDoS mitigation service. On this day, we were hit with another DDoS attack. For comparison, the attack that first prompted us to signup for DDoS mitigation I will refer to as “1X” strength. August’s attack as 10X in strength.  

Luckily, while the attack was “more powerful,” it was not very sophisticated. I was sitting at my desk and could hear our office tech support phone lines begin to ring like crazy. I knew there was a problem. Within a few minutes, I was getting frantic IMs sent to me from my tech support staff, informing me the server was down. I did some quick investigations and discovered we were under attack. I was able to quickly isolate the website that was targetted in the attack and was able to DNS that site over to Cloudflare’s network.  

Our servers were down for about 30 minutes before I was able to get the issue mitigated on my own. Watching the Cloudflare reports, I could see the DDoS continued off-and-on for a few days, thankfully Cloudflare was able to prevent that traffic from hitting my network.

Then I contacted Rackspace to politely ask them, “WTF? Why didn’t the DDoS Mitigation kick in and protect us?” Their response, if not so infuriating, was laughable. “Ohh, it wasn’t big enough for us to even notice.”

“Excuse me, what?”

They acknowledged it was a more massive attack that the attack I had years ago, but since I mitigated it “so quickly,” they didn’t have the “time” to do anything. Wait? What? Our servers were down for 30 minutes, and they sold me on “24x7x365” monitoring. That was why I paid $54,000!

We would go on to argue with Rackspace for the next four months that I wanted to cancel the DDoS mitigation because it was useless. The only option they gave was for me to “buy my way out” of the contract. Even after I showed them quoted emails from their staff assuring me the DDoS Mitigation would protect me, they didn’t care.

Finally, after four months of arguing, they allowed me to cancel my contract, a whopping two months early. Big deal, thanks for nothing, guys. But they refused to give a refund for the prior four months that I had asked it to be canceled while they stonewalled.

So now, for $6,000 they stole and refused to refund, they are willing to give up on $80,000+ per year in revenue. This is even after I had been working with my sales rep to purchase more servers and bring my cost to about $100k per year.

Rackspace’s service has gone to shit over the years. I was putting up with it as it was “just easier” than switching everything. This was the final straw. It wasn’t that the $6,000 was a “make or break” issue for me financially. It was the principle of it. They knew they had sold me a service that would not provide the level of service they promised. Simply put, they did not care.

The Switch to Amazon Web Services (AWS)

I had already been using AWS for a few services that Rackspace didn’t offer for one of my other tech startups, and decided to move all of my web services over to AWS.  

In future posts, I will describe my transition to AWS.

Overuse of the Terms “Bully” and “Victim”

I feel that we must take a moment and discuss how terms like “bully” and “victim” are overused, and how this overuse of the words is harmful to real victims of bullying.

If you rank of popular words in America today; one word that is bound to be prominent in the result is the word “bully.” Without any doubt, bullying is an activity that deserves every attention that is being paid to it around the world, and perhaps even more care is needed. However, there is a somewhat strange aura about the bully in schools, workplace, and the society at large, there seems to be a misconception of what qualifies as bullying. Anytime the word is mentioned, the mood automatically shifts from casual to serious because the gravity of the consequences that accompany the act is endless.

It is clear that from times past, a lot has been done to stem the tide of bullying in human society and yet if you watch the 24-hour news channels or read a news article online, everyone is seemingly a victim of bullying.  It does not matter if the report is about a divorce case in court with one of the two parties labeling the other party as a bully or for a student to name his classmate as a bully, or for the President to be called a bully just because he does not follow the same political ideology of another.

The use of the word is also common in the workplace as subordinates and superiors often slam the word on any individual or character they often disagree with. It is impossible to disagree with another without you being labeled a bully.

The word “bully” is so commonly used in the society today that the average person already believes they know exactly what the word means and they do not bother to read a dictionary to find its actual definition, Merriam Webster Dictionary defines a bully as:

a blustering, browbeating person especially : one who is habitually cruel, insulting, or threatening to others who are weaker, smaller, or in some way vulnerable

The key is habitually cruel to others. It also goes on to define a bully as a tormenter who has an imbalance of power and uses this behavior towards others on a constant basis. It is imperative that the true meaning of a word be properly understood before being applied and used; otherwise, it may lead to a problem especially with developing laws to tackle issues. After all, a problem has to be fully understood before help can be proposed. In the definition above, some key factors are essential or necessary for a person’s actions to be aptly termed as “bullying.”

According to the definition above, among other things; a bully must habitually cruel, i.e. have a track record of cruelty in his dealings with others around him. The bully must also be a tormenter, i.e. he must be an individual that thrives and derive joy from seeing others in pain and anguish. He or she must also have an inordinate appetite for power and dominion; so that he wants to impose his opinion and ideas on others forcefully and aggressively regularly. Based on these clarifications, a bully must be consistently aggressive towards his victims.

Bringing this definition back to the schoolyard or even to online social media based cyberbullying.  The bully must be relentless and consistent in the torment of their victim(s). An isolated instance with the passing of a comment like “she is fat” or “look at those zits, dork” is an example of being a jerk, not a bully.  Of course, I am not saying that those comments should be made or that as educators and parents we should ignore those comments. Being a jerk is not acceptable, and we must teach our youth those comments are not socially acceptable.  I am saying; however, that these examples, which account for many cases of bullying do not rise to the level of victimization and calling them such only diminishes the words.

“So who cares?” is what you are probably thinking, right?  What is the harm in calling a simple schoolyard jerk a bully and the target of his or her meanness as a victim?  The harm is when you lump these cases together into the same grouping with instances of real torment perpetrated by bullies.  More specifically, if everyone is desensitized to the term bully then when a youth wishes to report an actual instance of bullying to adults it can be too easily dismissed as “kids will be kids.”  Put simply, if everyone is a victim, then nobody is.

Another critical reason to distinguish between name calling and fights being the gym, and actual cases of bullying is most cases of kids getting into tights, verbal or even physical, is a two-way street.  Whereas, bullying is one way with the target of victimization innocent of any wrongdoing.

Children are not stupid; in some ways, they are more cunning than adults give them credit.  Kids know if they run to an adult and say “he is being a bully and picking on me,” that the adult will storm over to the bully and stop the action.  Even if, unbeknown to the adult, both children were equal in their unkindness towards each other. In these cases, which account for many, who is the victim?  Was it the child that ran to the adult or the purported bully? I feel the alleged bully was the victim as he or she will undoubtedly receive punishment, whereas the other kid that reported the alleged act was most likely just as guilty.   Do not blindly allow a child to assume the role of a victim without investigation.

Only by separating the occasional name calling and simple fights in the schoolyard from constant tormenting of another by a bully can we ever help to remedy the situation.  Of course, just as I stated above, schoolyard fights and name calling should still be addressed at the administrative level with adequate punishment for all parties guilty, please do not call it bullying.

Now that we know what bullying is not, let’s delve into what it actually is; doing this will help expose the glaring overuse of the term in our society today. Bullying can be broken down into four main groups; physical, verbal, social and material:

  • Bullying can be physical when it involves acts such as tripping, pushing intentionally, hitting or striking a person.
  • It can be verbal when it involves the use of insulting words to threaten, mock and ridicule another person. Verbal bullying can also include the use of hostile remarks such as sexist or racist remarks or the use of stereotypic statements that discriminate against or unjustly amplify the physical defects or characteristics of a person. Bullying can be termed as social bullying when it involves consciously propagating lies and rumors about someone to smear their image and deplete their worth in society.
  • Social bullying also involves such acts and behaviors that are clearly targeted at isolating and excluding an individual from a group activity in a bid to humiliate them.
  • Material bullying just as the name suggests include the deliberate destruction and vandalism of goods or property belonging to someone else. It can also involve forcefully or falsely taking something belonging to someone without their prior consent, i.e. taking a kid’s lunch money or other item with or without value.

On the other hand, we must also itemize and discuss acts that do not constitute bullying. Based on the dynamic nature of human behavior, it is quite easy to categorize any unwanted or diversionary behavior from someone as bullying even when it really is not.