How to Create a 501c3 Non-Profit Corporation.

Hire a lawyer.

Ok, jokes aside, hiring a lawyer may be a good option. Filing for a 501c3 is difficult and comes with a lot of variation depending on the state you are filing in. You don’t only have to deal with the IRS, you have to deal with the Department of Revenue Services in your own state as well as the members of your new board.

If you don’t want to hire a lawyer, there are a lot of resources out there that can help you create a checklist for your state. The issue that I’ve run into is A) it’s not my corporation, so I tend to have to ask my supervisor a lot of questions because she is the director and the only person who can give me the ok signal when needed and B) filling out tax forms can really really suck. They require a lot of information and will time out constantly while you’re searching for stuff.

The bottom line is that either option, hiring a lawyer or doing it yourself, will have pros and cons. The decision will most likely rest on what aspect of your life is currently most valuable: money or time.

Best,

Eloragh

Self Defense in Canada

While living in the states, a lot of my friends would remark about how “lucky” I was that I was a dual citizen of the US and Canada. I’ve written about Canada and why I don’t think it’s as golden as leftists in the states make it out to be before, but I want to touch on another controversial topic: self-defense.

When I told my boyfriend I was going to be out late for classes and lectures, he immediately asked if he could send me a bottle of pepper spray. We talked about it for a while before deciding that it would be in my best interest to be able to defend myself regardless of how safe Montreal is known to be. Yesterday, he reminded me that I really needed to purchase a can or let him send me one. After digging around and trying to see where I could find any form of mace, I was informed that it is illegal in Canada.

Canada has some pretty strict laws regarding firearms. Vice did a great video showing exactly how extensive and irritating the process of purchasing a gun legally is. Although many people agree that firearms are not necessary for a day to day life, they may not be aware of what objects are classified as such a label. Under Canadian law, pepper spray is in the category of firearms.

Kellie Leitch, a member of the Canadian House of Commons, recently proposed that ban on pepper spray be lifted for the sake of women’s rights. The government responded with a statement to the Huffington Post:

“… Ms. Leitch’s proposal is unrealistic and offensive to women across this country. Her misguided approach places the onus on women to defend themselves rather than focusing on addressing and preventing gender-based violence…”

As a woman, I actually do want the onus to defend myself to be placed on me. I don’t trust anyone more than myself to do what is best for me in a crisis. I sure as hell do not want to depend on the Canadian government’s ability to “address and prevent gender-based violence” instead of respecting my right to defend myself. There is not enough security in their promise.

You may be asking yourself, what can Canadian’s use to protect themselves? Well, we get to use the Streetwise My Kitty Self Defense Key Chain.

self defense

At this point, I’m not really sure what the Canadian government is trying to express. On the one hand, they want women to understand that they shouldn’t expect or prepare for assault because the government is working so hard to end it, but on the other hand, they give us degrading options like a pointy keychain that looks like a cute cat. What’s worse, the fact that my government is trying to make me believe that the reason they took away my right to defend myself was to lift me from oppression or that my only choice to get around self-defense laws is this ridiculously embarrassing toy?

Women do not want the state to take our self-defense into their control. They want the right to carry pepper spray, the right to feel safe late at night, and the right to know that their families aren’t dreading a phone call that the ended up dead in a metro station. Kelly Leitch’s proposal was not oppressive to women. What is oppressive is that women now have to depend on the promise that the Canadian government will do such a good job at ending gender-based violence that we don’t even need to think about protecting ourselves. This is not only a problem for Canadian women, but for everyone residing in this country. We were all born with the right to take our own security into our hands until it was stripped from us and we were told to say “thank you.”

Eloragh

Academic Finance Lessons

As I’ve been focusing on transitioning from teenage life to adult life, I’ve come to see that school has failed to teach me many things. A good understanding of how to balance my finances happens to be in that pile. Here’s why I think schools are bad at teaching students what to do with their money: they’re run by the government.

When I was a Montessori kid, some of my first lessons were about trading. I would count dried beans and trade them with the other students. I learned quickly that larger beans were worth two or three little beans unless they weren’t heavy. We all had our ways of deciding how many beans we were willing to part with. When I left Montessori and entered public school, I was appalled at the lack of beans. It would be twelve years until I had another finance class.

My senior year, our life and health teacher made an attempt to teach us how to budget. She used outdated worksheets from an outreach attempt made by some obscure bank. Many of them were vague and confusing, leaving much of the class with a failing grade and still no understanding of how to manage our paychecks. It was beyond frustrating. We had to move on due to the governments need to make everything seem as though it is progressing at a standard rate, and thus we all left feeling nervous about our fiscal future.

It’s no secret that I’m not a fan of government. I’ve dealt with two different kinds and seen them both fail miserably to meet the needs of their citizens. The reality is, government schools are bad at teaching finance because the government is terrible with its finances. I can’t remember a year when I haven’t heard news about the “debt ceiling” or “trade deficit” that we always seem to be dealing with. Although the repetitive stories I’m referring to may all be an attempt at outrage media, I still remember feeling annoyed by the numerous administration’s continued inability to budget themselves.

I’m moving to a completely different country where the currency is lower in value than USD. I am nervous about investing, transferring money, traveling, paying my bills, getting a job, and being monitored by two different tax collecting agencies. School never taught me how to handle these worries, so now it’s up to me to figure it out. I would hope that after 12+ years in education I would know how to balance a checkbook, but I guess that’s just not on the government’s list of educational priorities. No wonder we’re all dazed and broke.

Eloragh

 

Healthcare

Being a dual citizen, I get a lot of questions about Canadian healthcare. People in America tend to think that it is a fantastically progressive country and that the US should probably adopt something similar to the Canadian system. However, many European countries, like the UK, are seeing economic collapse due to programs that are comparable to Canadian universal healthcare.

If you think of it like Social Security, you might be able to imagine that as the population grows, the incentive to work hard drops because of free programs and more and more people begin to depend on welfare systems as fewer and fewer people are paying into them. This leads to a massive deficit and eventually, if unchecked, bankruptcy.

I love free stuff as much as the next guy, especially free markets. However, free programs, such as Canada’s healthcare, tends to disrupt free markets. Nobody can compete with free. I think this idea is best explained through a real-life scenario that was brought to my attention by Magatte Wade: Tom’s shoes. Tom’s shoes whole marketing scheme is that you buy a pair of shoes and then they send a pair to a kid in Africa. It seems charitable and straightforward, but in reality, it is disruptive and has put a lot of African entrepreneurs out of business. Shoemakers in Africa cannot compete with Tom’s shoes coming in and handing out free shoes. It’s the same concept, apply it to healthcare in Canada, or anywhere else for that matter

Socialist programs akin to Canada’s healthcare system cause deficits and disrupt free markets, which, if that wasn’t bad enough, is not all that they do. My uncle went blind in December of 2015. His sight was gone overnight, and no one had any clue as to what had caused his sudden loss of vision. When they took him to the hospital, med staff took two days to diagnose him with MS and accidentally gave him 10x the dose of steroids he needed. The steroids suppressed his immune system too much, and he ended up permanently blind. The hospital took two days to diagnose him, messed up his prescription, and, almost three years later, have still refused to take responsibility for his disability. Canadian policies make it practically impossible to sue the doctor, so my uncle will never receive any reparations and will be disabled for the rest of his life.

Handouts cause laziness. Now that healthcare is government funded, doctors have very minimal incentive to do their job well. In some ways, I can’t blame them. Being a Canadian doctor used to be a great job with co-pays and insurance money coming from client coverage, but now it’s practically charity. These people will never pay off ten years of medical school bills, and that will leave anyone a little sour. But, when you’re dealing with peoples lives, it’s unethical to be so casual about your job. So we find, yet again, another problem with this seemingly utopian socialist policy.

Citizens of the U.S. don’t see this though. Many leftists will take what Canada is doing at face value and say “look, the government is supporting it’s citizens, as it is supposed to.” They don’t hear the stories about fathers and uncles who go blind because of malpractice, of girls who have to have their ankles rebroken because it took them over a week to see a specialist, of young children who wait months to see their GP, just for their parents to receive a notice of cancelation the day before the appointment. It’s heartbreaking, and it’s causing an epidemic of chronically injured and ill Canadians. However, the Canadian government would receive nothing good from sharing these stories, so those outside of the country only hear what the government wants them to hear.

During my four years of high school, I was deeply disturbed by the amount of influence the left has on what is taught to children and teenagers. Most of my history textbooks made my life out to be inherently apologetic and praised the socialist systems of the past. I argued endlessly with teachers against their communist ways of thinking in an effort to maintain my stance that a free market, the freedom of competition and the right to abdicate, was the best way for a society to flourish. I was sickened by the public education systems willingness to promote such a toxic and dependent government system that only ever ended in the expansion of administrations. I saw it as yet another way that the school system was instructing students to hand over their independence in the name of what is right and just.

Socialism doesn’t work. It never has, it never will, and it frustrates me to watch people like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez preach a destructive doctrine. If America becomes more socialist, if it adopts the Canadian system, we will see the downfall of the free market. We will see laissez-faire become an idea of the past and the consent of the governed will be lost as citizens depend on the government to survive. Call me radical, but I have always seen socialism and welfare as a fast track for dependency. You want a fast track to a dystopia where we can’t dissolve the government? Implement socialism.

Eloragh