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Senior Credit Analyst

Westport, CT.

Captive construction equipment finance background preferred;flexible adaptive team player w/8 years  underwriting exper. For more info/to apply click here.

A Fortune 500 construction equipment manufacturing company.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Classified Ads---Syndicator
    SEC Questions Marlin Business Services
        FDIC gets ready for Recession
Schuler's Remarks on the Economy/Housing
    Equipment Leasing Trend Charts
Sales makes it Happen—by Adrian Miller
7 Steps to Exceptional Customer Service
    Classified Ads---Help Wanted
        Cartoon---Are you in?
Up-date: Two Bulletin Board Complaints
Southwest Credit, San Antonio, TX
    Leasing Meetings open to Non-Members
        Icon Capital New Web Site
Bank profits plunge 84 percent in 4Q
    FASB Parent: Five Is More than Seven
        News Briefs---
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            Calendar Events
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    Today's Top Event in History
        This Day in American History
Winter Poem
        Daily Puzzle
                Provence, France-Vacation
News on Line---Internet Newspapers
Missoula Independent

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release”


Classified Ads---Syndicator

Overland Park, KS
Top Syndicator from single deal to portfolios. 20+ yrs exp. Available for contract work or full time position. Nationwide contacts.

Westchester County, NY
7+ years in pricing, credit, and syndications. Strong credit skills and marketing experience at VP level. All collateral. MBA in Finance.

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SEC Questions Marlin Business Services

by Christopher Menkin

Two Letters.

Normally, this first letter would appear in “We get eMail:”

“Your Feb. 18th report concerning the termination of the founders of Marlin Leasing contains incorrect information. You state that only one of the founders of Marlin left voluntarily. The fact is, six people started Marlin Leasing in 1997 - Mike Witt, Gary Kester, Gary Shivers, Dan Dyer, Bill Waddell and John Forsyth. Mike Witt left on his own accord to start another leasing company and I retired in 2005 on my own accord. As you stated, Bill Waddell resigned to help start Latitude Leasing. I trust you will make the appropriate corrections.”

John Forsyth

The report was about the decline in business and profit at Marlin, due basically to the recent changes in management such as Bill Waddell as well as Michael Bennie, Dominic Janney, Tom Mancini, and Joe Gallo. In thinking about Mr. Forsyth letter, perhaps he was correct as noting the founders who have left as certainly it did change the personality of the company.

Second letter:

This letter also may interest readers as it was posted yesterday
on the Investor page, but dated December 3, 2007: from George D. Pelose, COO & General Counsel, Marlin Business Services Corp to the Security Exchange Commission:

(For readers interested in reading the complete letter, a link to it is at the end.) Here are highlights:

We read on page 2 that in 2006 you announced the introduction of two new financial products targeting the small business market: factoring and business capital loans. To the extent that these activities become material, please consider if and how they may impact your future disclosures, including segment and service line disclosures.

Response: We have discontinued the factoring product that was in pilot phase. We will consider the impact of business capital loans on future disclosures, to the extent the product becomes material to our consolidated balance sheet and statement of operations.

(Possible Evergreen leases)
Please address your accounting policy for selling returned equipment. In this regard, please provide the reader with an understanding of what the circumstances are in which you sell returned equipment rather than leasing it and how you account for that sale. If material, please quantify the revenues attributable to the sales of returned equipment in future filings and indicate where they are recorded. Also, help us understand where you are showing the impact of these sales on your statements of cash flows.

Response: We propose to add the following to Significant Accounting Policies (fee income)
in future filings:
(Existing: “Fee income consists of fees for delinquent lease payments and cash collected on early termination of leases. Fee income also includes net residual income, which includes income from lease renewals and gains and losses on the realization of residual values of equipment disposed at end of term.”)
Add: At the end of the original lease term, lessees may choose to purchase the equipment, renew the lease or return the equipment to the Company. The Company receives income from lease renewals when the lessee elects to retain the equipment longer than the original term of the lease. This income, net of appropriate periodic reductions in the estimated residual values of the related equipment, is included in fee income as net residual income...

The amount of total net residual income is disclosed in the MD&A section of the filing in the discussion of fee income. Total net residual income for each of the three years ended December 31, 2006, 2005 and 2004 was $6.8 million, $6.0 million and $4.7 million respectively and gain/(loss) on the sale of equipment represented $284,000, ($41,000) and $158,000, respectively. The amount of the gain or loss from the sale of equipment was not material to our financial statements; therefore, we do not believe it necessary to change the previous year’s financial statements.

We note that the CEO plays a significant role in the compensation-setting process. Please tell us, with a view toward future disclosure, whether the compensation committee approved the CEO’s recommendations for compensation and equity awards for 2006 or discuss the extent to which the committee determined to pay to award compensation other than as recommended.

Response: At a meeting held on February 9, 2007, the Company’s Compensation Committee approved the 2006 bonus recommendations put forth by the Company’s CEO. The Company’s CEO provided the recommendations to the Committee Members in advance of the meeting, along with a performance assessment report. The Committee members reviewed the material and, after discussion amongst themselves and with Mr. Dyer, they unanimously approved the recommendations.

At a meeting held on March 16, 2007, the Company’s Compensation Committee approved the equity incentive award recommendations put forth by the Company’s CEO. The Company’s CEO provided the recommendations to the Committee Members in advance of the meeting. The Committee members reviewed the material and, after discussion amongst themselves and with Mr. Dyer, they unanimously approved the recommendations.

In future filings we will (i) include a statement as to whether the Compensation Committee approved the CEO’s recommendations for compensation and equity awards or (ii) discuss the extent to which the Compensation Committee determined to pay to award compensation other than as recommended.

Please tell us with a view toward future disclosure, how the target levels (as a percentage of base salary) and the threshold, target, and maximum bonus opportunities were determined for the executive officers.

Response: As part of the Watson Wyatt study in 2004, the Company sought to set the executives’ total target compensation levels at levels that were near the median of the data from the peer group and the broader industry practices. This resulted in the setting of threshold, target and maximum bonus levels (as a percentage of base salaries), which are currently as follows: Daniel P. Dyer: 42.5% threshold, 85% target and 148.75% maximum; George D. Pelose: 37.5% threshold, 75% target and 108.75% maximum; and Lynne C. Wilson: 22.5% threshold, 45% target and 63% maximum. We will provide the threshold, target and maximum bonus levels in future filings.

Since you refer to the amount of compensation paid by a peer group and comparison group, please identify the companies in these groups. See Item 402(b)(2)(xiv) of Regulations S-K.

Response: See response to #9 above. To the extent applicable, in future filings we will identify any peer and comparison groups used by the Compensation Committee when making future determinations of the executives’ compensation.

(#9 The peer companies used in the initial benchmark analysis were: California First National Bank (CFNB); Credit Acceptance Corp. (CACC); Financial Federal Corp. (FIF); First Marblehead Corp. (FMD); Medallion Financial Corp. (TAXI); Portfolio Recovery Associates Inc. (PRAA); First Investors Financial Services Group Inc. (FIFS); and World Acceptance Corp. (WRLD). The Company’s Compensation Committee used this benchmark data to set the executives’ compensation levels in 2004.)



FDIC gets ready for Recession

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is taking steps to brace for an increase in failed financial institutions as the nation's housing and credit markets continue to worsen.

The FDIC is looking to bring back 25 retirees from its division of resolutions and receiverships. Many of these agency veterans likely worked for the FDIC during the late 1980s and early 1990s, when more than 1,000 financial institutions failed amid the savings-and-loan crisis.

FDIC spokesman Andrew Gray said the agency was looking to bulk up "for preparedness purposes." The division now has 223 employees, mostly based in Dallas.

The agency, which insures accounts at more than 8,000 financial institutions, is also seeking to hire an outside firm that would help manage mortgages and other assets at insolvent banks, according to a newspaper advertisement.

"Regulators are bracing for well over 100 bank failures in the next 12 to 24 months, with concentrations in Rust Belt states like Michigan and Ohio, and the states that are suffering severe housing-market problems like California, Florida, and Georgia," said Jaret Seiberg, Washington policy analyst for financial-services firm Stanford Group.

In job postings on its Web site, the FDIC said it is looking for people with "skill in performing duties associated with a financial-institution closing, such as receivership management, resolutions and/or asset disposition; knowledge of the resolutions process as it relates to complex financial institutions." Such positions would require "very frequent overnight travel," the posting said, and would pay up to $180,770.

"The notion of bringing back some people who have been through it before is very smart," said William Isaac, who was FDIC chairman from 1981 until 1985. All told, the FDIC has roughly 4,600 employees, far fewer than the about 15,000 it had as recently as 1992.

The FDIC rated 65 banks and thrifts as "problem" institutions at the end of the third quarter of 2007, up from 47 institutions a year earlier. Both figures are low by historical standards. At the end of 1993, there were 572 "problem" banks and thrifts. The FDIC is expected to update its data on "problem" institutions today.

Before the housing market soured, the banking industry was enjoying one of its most profitable stretches in U.S. history. There wasn't a single bank failure from July 2005 through January 2007, an unprecedented span.

There have only been four bank failures in the past 12 months, a rate the FDIC has easily been able
to handle.

In many parts of the country, the housing-market decline has hamstrung banks, and regulators have reported weakening performance of commercial real estate, small business and credit-card loans. Exacerbating the situation is a cash-flow crunch, which makes it harder for banks to obtain funding to originate new loans.

FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair, Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan and Office of Thrift Supervision Director John Reich have warned of a pickup in bank failures. Last week, Mr. Reich reported that the thrift industry lost a record $5.2 billion in the fourth quarter.

from: (Jeffrey Taylor)



Schuler's Remarks on the Economy/Housing

Leasing News has run Al Schuler, US Department of Agriculture Forest Service,
forecast for many years, as he has been accurate as we can see,
and is not influenced by clients or stock market prognosticators who pay their salary.

Here is a question and response to Mr. Schuler, from one of Leasing News readers in the Netherlands:

"There are two intriguing remarks:

"1) the housing markets will only be better if there is alignment between Home Prices and Income (I can understand this part)
2) when the home prices come down to reality the housing mess will right it self (I can understand this part too).

"But in combination, the expectation of a happy end in 2008 does not make sense to me. Looking at the graph, Al Schuler is either expecting a major boost in income, or an extreme drop in home prices (in order to realign to sustainable). It took the US roughly 8 year to build a bubble that collapsed, but a 50% drop in Home Prices in under 2?

"Maybe he can elaborate on this some further?

"Another thing: the first reference to the subprime bubble I found in your archives dates to May, 2006. All present timelines shown today say June, 2007 saw the first cracks in this mortgage building. Your sources were well ahead of the changes! Thank you for finding and publicising such material."

Kind regards, Sicco J Bier
Halfweg, Netherlands

"I agree with the readers comments. The last paragraph in the February 20 housing article suggests that there will be some rebuilding of the housing market in 2009. I implied that the housing market will "right itself" by the end of 2008. That was a poor choice of words on my part. As the reader says - it took about 8 years for the bubble to develop, and it will take more than two years to deflate.

The resale market (the real laggard to date, and has not seen much in the way of price declines) - as detailed in today’s report from NAR (Nat. Assoc. of Realtors - shows that prices are declining - - median existing homes prices in January were 4.6% lower than January 2007.

They are coming down, and in order for incomes and prices to be in better balance ( historically the ratio of median home price to median family income is about 2.6 - 2.8, and today , the ratio is still
about 3.7). E.g., in 2007, the median family income was $60,779 while median existing home prices was $217,800. That implies the prices have to come down about $47,000 or about 20% to make the ratio 2.8. That could come from a combination of increasing incomes (doubtful) or declines in home prices ( more probably), or most likely, a combination of the two.

How long will this take - Certainly beyond the end of 2008 - what I was trying to say ( but did not do very well), was that by the end of 2008, hopefully the worst will be behind us, and that would provide some basis for a partial recovery beginning in 2009.

Resale Home prices will still be falling, but as the inventory in resale market (currently over 10 months) drops (it should as prices decline unless of course increasing foreclosures overpowers everything), but we should see some revival in the NEW Home Market beginning in 2009. This is a the market that means the most to building material suppliers - lumber, plywood, OSB, engineered wood
products , etc.

Incidentally, anything the government does to freeze mortgages, delay foreclosures, etc. will only delay a real/sustainable recovery in my opinion. Helping people keep their homes will slow the foreclosure rate for sure, but it will also slow down house price declines which I believe are the real cure for this bubble - that is the way almost all bubbles get "fixed". Unfortunately, there is lots of pain in the process, but hopefully we will learn enough to prevent it from happening again
(I’m not sure we will).

Al Schuler

Friday's article:



Equipment Leasing Trend Charts

Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25) showing the equipment finance sector’s performance for January.

Note from ELFA: “Index Change as of January 2008: LaSalle National Leasing Corporation has been acquired and thus has been replaced in the MLFI and all historical numbers have been adjusted to account for this change to the index.”

((Ironically while the survey has been ELFA MLFI-25 Participants, in the past there have been 26 (never counted them, just took the information from the press release. *) How this is adjusted
is interesting as key indicators are not percentages, but actual dollars or number of those employed. The charts, revised and presented in a better format by ELFA are presented without comment. editor))

ELFA MLFI-25 Participants

  1. ADP Credit Corporation
  2. Bank of America
  3. Bank of the West
  4. Canon Financial Services
  5. Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation
  6. CIT
  7. Citicapital
  8. De Lage Landen Financial Services
  9. First American Equipment Finance
  10. GreatAmerica
  11. Hitachi Credit America
  12. HP Financial Services
  13. Irwin Financial
  14. John Deere Credit Corporation
  15. Key Equipment Finance
  16. Marlin Leasing Corporation
  17. National City Commercial Corp.
  18. RBS Asset Finance
  19. Regions Equipment Finance
  20. Siemens Financial Services
  21. US Bancorp
  22. US Express Leasing
  23. Verizon Capital Corp
  24. Volvo Financial Services
  25. Wells Fargo Equipment Finance

*ELFA MLFI-(26) Participants

  1. ADP Credit Corporation
  2. Bank of America
  3. Bank of the West
  4. Canon Financial Services
  5. Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation
  6. CIT
  7. Citicapital
  8. De Lage Landen Financial Services
  9. First American Equipment Finance
  10. GreatAmerica
  11. Hitachi Credit America
  12. HP Financial Services
  13. Irwin Financial
  14. John Deere Credit Corporation
  15. Key Equipment Finance
  16. LaSalle National Leasing Corporation
  17. Marlin Leasing Corporation
  18. National City Commercial Corp.
  19. RBS Asset Finance
  20. Regions Equipment Finance
  21. Siemens Financial Services
  22. US Bancorp
  23. US Express Leasing
  24. Verizon Capital Corp
  25. Volvo Financial Services
  26. Wells Fargo Equipment Finance



Sales Make it Happen --- by Adrian Miller

7 Steps to Exceptional Customer Service

Adrian Miller
516-445-1135 (cell)

The statistic that 50% of new businesses fail within their first year is fairly well known. Ugly and scary, yes, but well known. And yet this gloomy statistic may encourage those who make it to day 366 to breathe a sigh of relief. After all, if you make it past year one, you're laughing, right?

Well, no; they aren't quite in the clear, yet.

It's kind of like a game show; once you make it past the first round, then things really start to get challenging, because an alarming 95% of businesses fail within their first five years.

Okay. What's Happening?!

This doesn't actually make any sense. In a business world that is overflowing with quality information – one could argue that there are more educated business people around today than ever before – why are nineteen out of twenty business failing within a mere five years?

Volumes of research and commentary has gone into this problem; and issues like lack of experience, poor location, and the rather ironic unexpected growth are just three of many reasons that give us some understanding here.

Yet underneath so many of these causes, if not directly beneath them than a few layers deeper, is a concept that businesses seem to overlook…until it's too late, and they become a failure statistic for some business pundit to analyze. That concept is customer service .

Reinventing Customer Service

It's not that businesses don't understand what customer service is; they do. The problem is much more sophisticated than this – or else it would be very easy to solve.

The root problem is, while businesses often understand that the goal of customer service is to achieve customer satisfaction (and then experience all of the pleasant consequences of this, such as more profit and market share), they often don't know how to achieve to this goal. They know the end, but they aren't aware of the seven steps to exceptional customer service.

The Seven Steps

1. Invest in soft-skills training.

It's unfortunate – and often destructive – that the term soft-skills even exists ; because that very word “soft” can imply that these are non-essential, nice-to-have skills. Yet 95% of businesses failing within their first five years compels us – if nothing else – to reevaluate our assumptions; because obviously, there's a flaw somewhere, and it starts here with the concept of soft skills .

For starters, they aren't soft at all; they're foundational. And just like the foundation of a house or the chassis of a car must be built to withstand an enormous amount of stress and pressure, soft skills provide your CSRs with the capacity to do what you need them to do: to solve customer problems, to spot and exploit additional sales opportunities, and to build loyalty.

Once this is accepted – that soft skills are as hard as any business skills can be – the next step is to actually implement practical training sessions. Teach your CSRs everything that they need to know about communication effectiveness, call control, rapport, phone etiquette, conflict resolution, and so on.

Remember: building vision and developing strategy aren't the only functions of management; they must put their CSRs in a position to succeed. Unless soft skills (which aren't soft!) training becomes a core part of your knowledge capital, then they're failure really isn't their own to bear; it's a failure of management.

2. Get in touch with your customers' reality.

Have you ever noticed that some things seem so clear from the outside, yet from within, things become cloudy and confused? We often see this in politics, when we accuse – often with good reason – elected officials for being “out of touch with reality”. What seems like common sense to us just doesn't seem to filter into that bubble.

Bad customer service is almost ALWAYS a result of being out of touch with customer reality. It's really quite simple; and perhaps even too simple to grasp, since we're often in search of complicated answers to complicated problems. Here's the insight to memorize: customers like to be treated like they matter to you.

But wait—you do treat them this way already, right?

Do you?

Do have an automated recording telling customers that their call is important to you…so important that you keep telling them this over and over that by the time they reach 10 minutes on hold, it actually becomes insulting for them to be told that they're important…when they obviously aren't?

Do you have CSRs who actually listen to find out what the problem is and what solution the customer would like, before they try and “resolve the situation”?

Do you have a checklist of all of the things that you personally loathe about customer service, and ensure that your business reflects none of these?

If not, then while you may be quite brilliant when it comes to the front-end of business – making sales, increasing market and mindshare – you're really undermining your success on the back-end.

3. Make customer service training ordinary.

Training sales people on new product or service details doesn't seem like an extraordinary task; in fact, it's so ordinary , that it's not seen as an event at all. It's probably not seen as anything; just regular, everyday business.

So why is training customer service such a big deal? Why does it require such fanfare and noise?

It doesn't! Cultivate a business culture within which customer service training is ongoing and, indeed, ordinary. Make it as typical a part of what you do as any other core business function. Why? Obviously, it leads to better trained CSRs. Un-obviously , it creates buy-in from the
CSRs themselves!

By demonstrating that customer service training is important and essential enough to be “ordinary”, CSRs feel recognized. Instead feeling like an evil problem to be fixed (“we need to fix our customer service! Train them! Train them ALL! Mhahahahhahah!), they feel as if they're a part of an essential and valued business process (“of course we're training the CSRs this week…we always train, it's part of what we do as a company!”).

4. Make it real.

Three words that you never want to have associated with your ongoing, ordinary customer service training is: suspension of belief . It is counterproductive to train CSRs to solve problems that they cannot solve or, possibly, don't even exist.

Find out what your CSRs are feeling on a daily basis. Understand their pain points, and give them a forum to provide their honest feedback in a blame-free, punishment-free forum. Finding out from your CSRs what needs to improve is also severely cheaper than finding this out from ex-customers.

5. Enlarge your concept of service.

Traditionally, service was viewed narrowly as that slim channel between a customer making a phone call (or sending an email), and an employee called a CSR responding to that inquiry.

Of course, traditionally , 95% of new businesses fail.
So the traditional view here has some problems.

Specifically, it has this problem: the definition of service must be enlarged to embrace all interface channels. Not just the formal customer calling the CSR. Everyone and everything that interacts with a customer – current and prospective – must be trained in customer service. The IVR menu. The website. The accounts receivable staff. The delivery person. The on-site technician. Remember: from a customer's perspective, these role distinctions are quite meaningless. They view the concept of customer service as a continuum that can quite easily change shape: today it's the delivery guy, tomorrow it's the website, next week it's the sales staff. And if any of these interface areas are untrained and ineffective, customers will make rather harsh and often immediate evaluations.

6. You can't fool all of your staff all of the time.

CSRs (and everyone else who performs the customer service function) carry around within them a little algebraic equation. It goes like this: if you treat me badly, and expect me to treat customers well , then this equation will not reconcile. There will be a discrepancy.

That discrepancy, in human customer service terms, is hypocrisy .

Customer service people will easily see the hypocrisy – of one exists -- between how they're treated, and how they're expected to treat customers. If they're treated poorly, disrespectfully, or worse, then they will have trouble changing standards when they deal with customers. In fact, they'll likely treat customers the same way. Why? Simple: the algebraic formula will reconcile. You treat them bad, they treat customers bad, and equilibrium is restored to the universe.

Businesses lose a tremendous amount of internal credibility when they tolerate double-standards of service: one for their employees, and one for their customers.

7. Everyone smiles when they're winning.

When you're offering a highly demanded product or service, or you've done a great job with your sales and marketing end and customers are knocking on your door, it's often convenient to assume that customer service is also flawless. After all, things are going well, right? And everyone smiles when things are going well.

But as everyone knows, business is cyclical; do something well, and pretty soon, your competitors will do it just as well – and will strive to do it better, faster, and cheaper, too. That's when the smiling usually stops, and where real customer service competence either shines or collapses.

Good customer service can save your business when things aren't going so well on the front-end. Ensure that you invest in your customer service training regardless of how great sales might be; and how much market share you may command for the foreseeable future.

Remember: exceptional customer service isn't just a part of those 5% of businesses that survive long-term; it's probably the best insurance policy business has ever known.

A Final Thought…

And though it's probably clear already, it won't hurt to add a final step: get SERIOUS about Customer Service.

Great customer service isn't some feel-good, sing-a-long presentation session that ends with a smattering of applause and people racing for their cars in the parking lot. It's a serious, strategic investment that requires focus and follow-through.

Indeed, this may still seem a bit unfamiliar. We're used to seeing sales as something that requires this kind of seriousness.

But remember…we're also used to seeing 95% of businesses fail within five years.

Be the exception to this statistic by becoming exceptional in customer service.

Sell More/Speak Powerfully:

--- Join us for our amazing teleclass on 3/28:

Adrian Miller Sales Training
516-445-1135 (cell)

See my book: “The Blatant Truth: 50 Ways to Sales Success"
"What if we train them and they leave? What if we don't train them and they stay?"

Source: US Small Business Association

Previous "Sales makes it Happen" columns at:



Leasing Industry Help Wanted

Broker Relations Manager

Broker Relations Manager
Bothell , Washington

Build/manage broker base. Provide guidance to new brokers. Work with "full financial" credit packages, “story” & non-standard credits from $25,000 to $450,000.
e-mail or
fax resume: 425.806.1813 .

Our new business is sourced exclusively through brokers.



Los Angeles, CA

Require Great Plains & 5+ yrs of accounting exp.  CPA & exp. in equip. leasing are desired but not required.  Must have BA in accounting/finance field. Send resume to

About the Company : Jules & Associates, Inc. is at forefront of the equipment finance industry.  Founded in 1989, we have been ranked twice by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest growing companies in the U.S.

Lease Officer


SMALL TICKET LESSOR, providing superior service for 35+years Transactions- $10Kto $1MM, Seeks seasoned sales professionals To learn more: sandyspringbank.tms or contact Scott Wheeler at

Senior Credit Analyst

Senior Credit Analyst

Westport, CT.

Captive construction equipment finance background preferred;flexible adaptive team player w/8 years  underwriting exper. For more info/to apply click here.

A Fortune 500 construction equipment manufacturing company.





Up-date: Two Bulletin Board Complaints
Southwest Credit, San Antonio, TX

Southwest Credit, 13750 San Pedro, Suite #150, San Antonio, TX 78232 claims to be a direct funding source and in operations since 1999 on their web site:

February 25, 2007:
“David Kirkendall contacted me at the end of the week and informed me that the last check had been sent. I did confirm today with the vendor and they did receive the check. Everyone is now funded on the deal.

“Thanks for all your help!!!!

“Thanks, “

Rod Bennett
Premier Funding Group
105 Hembree Park Dr.
Suite B
Roswell, Ga 30075
770-625-4500 x 5076

Bennet said this is his complaint:

“They claimed they couldn't fund the deal in December because they were changing bank lines. The vendors were okay with this. The vendors were promised they would be funded by January 11th. At this point they claim they are still trying to process the funding. All site inspection and verbal requirements have been done.”

He never said SouthWest was not communicating. He said the deal was not funded since December. If it has not funded, his complaint then is valid to Leasing News.

Mr. David Kirkendall's response:

"I will state that at the present time, Mr. Bennett and Southwest Credit have an agreement under which we are operating, and Mr. Bennett and I are staying in touch via phone, fax and email."

The first complaint remains, as Mr. Kirkendall stated there was a document signed that allowed SouthWest Capital to keep the deposit. Leasing News has not seen this document to confirm that Mr. New’s complaint is not legitimate. Mr. New states he is attempting to bring the matter before the National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers which SouthWest Capital is a member.

From Bob New:

"Here is a front and back copy of our check that we sent to Southwest Credit functioning as agent for our potential lessee Cuauhtemoc Becerra. Also enclosed is a copy of the document signed by Cuauhtemoc Becerra on which Southwest Credit is attempting to stand in their effort to retain this $8,034.58. I am certainly in favor of a funder retaining deposit if the lessee fails to go forward on the agreed upon lease after being provided credit approval. This is not the case here.

"Southwest Credit fooled around and was very inefficient in handling the case. So much so that the product to be leased was sold out from under our client. Still wanting to go forward Cuauhtemoc Becerra put forth the effort necessary to find a similar acceptable product. Again long time fool around with Southwest Credit and again the to be leased product was sold out from under our customer three days before we got approval. Discouraged to the point of exasperation Cuauhtemoc Becerra asked for his money and decided not to lease at all."

818.247.3530 T
818.247.3536 F

Previous Story:

Up-date: Two Bulletin Board Complaints
Southwest Credit, San Antonio, TX

Southwest Credit, 13750 San Pedro, Suite #150, San Antonio, TX 78232 claims to be a direct funding source and in operations since 1999 on their web site:

Here are the two complaints:

Here is a response from SouthWest Credit:

"First, Southwest Credit thanks your organization for the opportunity to respond to the bulletin board complaints that were filed on your website.

"On the bulletin board, it was reported by your organization that you had received two complaints 'that they have not responded to repeated e-mails and telephone calls.' As to both of the cases that were published on the board, this is simply not true. I personally had contacted both complainants prior to the time that I became aware of the postings to discuss with each of them the facts specific to each of their cases and to assure them if they had questions, they could contact me.

I have also spoken to Mr. Bennett since his complaint was posted, and he agrees that I have made reasonable attempts to keep him up to date and that he is satisfied. I urge you to contact him yourself to verify this statement.

Additionally, on at least three occasions prior to your posting, I spoke with Mr. New about the lease in question. Since I regard Mr. New as an honorable man, if you make an inquiry to him I am sure he will confirm that he spoke to me about this matter. Although Mr. New and Southwest Credit disagree on the resolution of the situation, we did talk clearly and specifically about this matter. Unfortunately, Mr. New has compounded this incident by posting an incomplete document to your site in support of his allegation that Southwest Credit does not have a contractual right to its position. Our respect for the privacy of our clients does not allow us to post a lessee’s document on a public forum as Mr. New attempted to do. However, Southwest Credit can and does state that the document posted is not complete. Southwest Credit has a conditional acceptance contract that is very complete and clear on the procedure that must occur during the lease process. After evaluating all of the facts in this matter, Southwest Credit decided to exercise its contractual right to retain the payments made by the lessee. Mr. New disagreed with this decision; he certainly has the right to do. But to jump to the determination, based upon an incomplete document, that Southwest Credit has no contractual right to retain the funds is simply wrong. Southwest Credit is confident it has both the contractual and the factual basis to support its position in this matter.

As to the returned email sent to Mr. James Lopez, we are not sure how this occurred. We have confirmed via email with the NAELB that Ms. Jilma Gonzales is named as Southwest Credit’s NAELB contact in this organization’s database, not Mr. James Lopez.

David Kirkendall
General Counsel
Southwest Credit
13750 San Pedro Ste. 150
San Antonio, TX 78232
Phone: 210 490-7355

Bennet said this is his complaint:

“They claimed they couldn't fund the deal in December because they were changing banks lines. The vendors were okay with this. The vendors were promised they would be funded by January 11th. At this point they claim they are still trying to process the funding. All site inspection and verbal requirements have been done.”

He never said SouthWest was not communicating. He said the deal was not funded since December. If it has not funded, his complaint then is valid to Leasing News.

Mr. David Kirkendall's response:

"I will state that at the present time, Mr. Bennett and Southwest Credit have an agreement under which we are operating, and Mr. Bennett and I are staying in touch via phone, fax and email."

As to Mr. New, the check came from his company. He sent us a copy of the check cashed by SouthWest Credit. It was also stated in the complaint:

"Here is a front and back copy of our check that we sent to Southwest Credit functioning as agent for our potential lessee Cuauhtemoc Becerra."

Mr. Kirkendall's response:

"I am not surprised by his statement. Since I believe that Mr. New is an honorable man, I do not think for a minute that he would have posted a document on your website that he knew was not complete. Nonetheless, his document is incomplete and I think if he goes back to his client, he should be able to get the complete version."

The complaint to Leasing News remains legitimate as there is no bilateral document provided that allows SouthWest Credit to keep the deposit from Bob New, Inc.

Copy of Bob New, Inc. check (signature/bank number deleted):



Leasing Association Events-Meetings Open to All

Thursday, March 27, 2008
UAEL 6th Annual SoCal Regional Roundtable
Costa Mesa, CA
Southern California Region


Thursday, April 3, 2008
UAEL Northern California Spring Mixer
Walnut Creek, CA
Northern California Region



Friday, May 16, 2008
Networking in the Fast Lane
Indianapolis, IN
Midwest Region


Eastern Association of Equipment Lessors  
Chapter Meeting Schedule for more information:
Tel : 212 809-1602
Fax : 212-809-1650
62 William Street,  4th Floor
New York, NY  10005

February 28 th Boston Chapter Meeting
March 7 th Connecticut Chapter Meeting
March 14 th Charlotte Chapter Meeting
March 21 st Buffalo Chapter Meeting
April 6 th - 9 th Amelia Island, FL EAEL Spring Conference
April 8 th Atlanta Chapter Meeting
May 1 st Philadelphia Chapter Meeting
June Baltimore Crabfeast
June 5 th New Jersey Chapter Meeting
June 10 th New York City Chapter Meeting
June 12 th Boston Chapter Meeting
June 17 th Charlotte Chapter Meeting
June 19 th Buffalo Chapter Meeting
July 8 th Atlanta Chapter Meeting
August New York City Golf Outing
October 14 th Atlanta Chapter Meeting
November 4 th Buffalo Chapter Meeting
November 6 th Connecticut Chapter Meeting
November 12 th Philadelphia Chapter Meeting
November 13 th Long Island Chapter Meeting
November 18 th New Jersey Chapter Meeting
December 2 nd Boston Holiday Party
December 3 rd Buffalo Holiday Party
December 4 th Baltimore Holiday Party
December 8 th New York City Holiday Party
December 9 th Charlotte Holiday Party


To view Leasing Association Conferences in 2007, please click here.


### Press Release ###########################

NJ Website Design Company CMDS Completes New Web Site for ICON Capital Corp

Online marketing and NJ Web site design company CMDS has announced the redesign and relaunch of for ICON Capital Corp., a global asset manager specializing in equipment leasing and structured financing solutions for capital asset intensive industries.

Middletown, NJ (PRWEB) February 26, 2008 -- Online Marketing and NJ Website Design company CMDS has announced the launch of Icon Capital Corp, a completely redesigned online presence for ICON Capital Corp., a $1.5 billion equipment leasing and structured finance company with offices in New York, San Francisco, Boston, Toronto and London.

The new Web site is designed to give ICON Capital a more expansive online presence, one that better reflects the scope of the company's business activities in the U.S. and abroad.

"Obviously the look is crucial, but we've taken steps to significantly improve functionality for site visitors as well," says CMDS principal Christopher J. Mulvaney, an industry leader in NJ Website Design. "The new site is easier to navigate, with expanded, highly relevant content designed to improve search results and make it easier for potential customers to find ICON online." As a result, says Mulvaney, the new site is expected to become a key sales generation tool for the company.

As with all new Web site development projects, CMDS paid special attention to the user experience. "In addition to easier navigation, the site is also faster. We used Flash and AJAX to save on load time, and the home page is now completely optimized right from the start," says Mulvaney.

According to Douglas Crossman, National Sales Manager for ICON Securities, a division of ICON Capital, the new site is a vast improvement, "Our new site really tells the story of who Icon Capital is today. It's cleaner, faster, and we're thrilled with how easy it is to navigate."

CMDS will work with ICON to carry the site's branding over to the company's offline marketing materials, including brochures and PowerPoint presentations.

CMDS is an award-winning marketing, Web site design firm and search engine optimization agency dedicated to generating leads for businesses. Services include Web site design, online advertising, marketing services, Web site redesign, internet marketing, search engine marketing, and search engine optimization.

The new site is easier to navigate, with expanded, highly relevant content designed to improve search results and make it easier for potential customers to find ICON online.
For information, contact Chris Mulvaney at 732-706-5555 or visit


### Press Release ###########################

News Briefs----

Bank profits plunge 84 percent in 4Q

FASB Parent: Five Is More than Seven

Consumer confidence plunges while wholesale inflation rises at fastest pace in 26 years

Home Depot quarterly profit drops with home sales slump

Nordstrom reports lower profit for quarter, says 2008 will be weak

Top Ten American Idols

Michael Jackson's Neverland ranch set for auction over default



You May have Missed---

Jack Daniel's master distiller to retire



Sports Briefs----

Is 'Coach' Kiffin dancing toward Al's electric chair?



“Gimme that Wine”

Lower world wine supplies bolster California wine grape price outlook

Unified Wine and Grape Symposium revealing event

Premiere Napa Valley 2008 12th Annual Barrel Auction Brings $2.2 million

Bronco Wine Company’s Fred Franzia “Father of Two Buck Chuck” Receives “Entrepreneur of the 2000s” Award from Wine Market Report

High alcohol volume not a problem for Washington wines _ yet

Researchers look for fine vine to aide Kentucky's wine industry

Luscious oysters can go beyond half shell

Wine Prices by vintage
US/International Wine Events
Winery Atlas
Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page
The London International Vintners Exchange (Liv-ex) is an electronic exchange for fine wine.



Calendar Events This Day

Dominican Republican: Independence Day
National Day. Independence gained in 1844 with the withdrawal of Haitians, who had controlled the area for 22 years.

Inconvenience Yourself Day
A day to think about others and look for ways to inconvenience yourself while making the lives of others better/easier. Annually the fourth Wednesday in February.

No Brainer Day

Polar Bear Day

Strawberry Day

Saint feast Days



Cranberries are one of just 3 major fruits native to North America. Blueberries and Concord grapes are the other two.



Today's Top Event in History

1902 - John (Ernst) Steinbeck (one of American’s best writers: The Grapes of Wrath, Cannery Row; known also for his many short stories and “Travels with Charlie,” which generated several television programs. died Dec 20, 1968) He lived a few blocks away from where I live now, and in the 1940’s and 1950’s wrote many of his books here.


This Day in American History

    1717 - What was perhaps the greatest snow in New England history commenced on this date. During a ten day period a series of four snowstorms dumped three feet of snow upon Boston, and the city was snowbound for two weeks. Up to six feet of snow was reported farther to the north, and drifts covered many one story homes.
    1728-Importation of rum in the colonies for this year amounted to 2,124,5000 gallons of liquor. Drinking was extremely heavy. This printed doggerel gave one reason why people did not drink:
        There’s but one Reason I can Think
        Why People ever cease to drink,
        Sobriety the Cause is not,
        Nor Fear of being deam’d a Sot,
        But if Liquor can’t be got.
    1773-Christ Church in Alexandria, VA., was completed after six years of construction and a total cost of approximately $4070. George Washington purchased a pew for himself and his family at a cost of about $100. He also donated a handsome brass chandelier to the church.
    1776 - A colonial force of North Carolina patriots resoundingly defeats a detachment of Scottish Loyalists at Moore’s Creek Bridge near Wilmington. The battle ended Royal Governor Josiah Martin's hopes of regaining control of the colony for the British crown. In addition, this first decisive Patriot victory of the Revolutionary War raised morale for Patriots throughout the colonies.
    1782 - In England, the House of Commons votes against waging any further war in America. On 5 March, Parliament enacts legislation empowering the English Crown to negotiate peace with the United States.
    1792 -a heavy snowfall at Charleston, South Carolina caused the Ashley River Bridge to collapse.
    1807- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, American poet and writer, born at Portland, ME. He is best remembered for his classic narrative poems, such as The Song of Hiawatha, Paul Revere's Ride and The Wreck of the Hesperus. The most popular 19th century American poet and first to earn a living solely from writing verse. His best-known narrative poem, The Song of Hiawatha (1855) adapted its meter from the Finnish national epic Kalevala. Died at Cambridge, MA, Mar 24, 1882.
    1850-Charlotte Ray, first Black female lawyer, born New York City. She become the first woman to be accepted by the District of Columbia Bar Association. Ray opened a law office in Washington, D.C., but racial prejudices proved too strong, and she could not obtain enough legal business to maintain an active practice. In 1879 she returned to New York City unable to establish and maintain a successful law practice on her own. There she became active with the National Association of Colored Women and the National Women's Suffrage Association. She was employed by the Brooklyn School System. Around 1886 she married a man with the last name Fraim and moved to Woodside on Long Island. She died on January 4, 1911 from bronchitis at the age of 60. She was a person that stood up for what she believed in. She did much to help women black and white to gain equal rights to vote and to hold the same occupations at men..
    1863 - Confederate raider William Quantrill and his bushwackers attacked Hickman, Kentucky, shooting women and children.
    1864-As chronicled in the book “Andersonville, “ the first Union prisoners begin arriving at the Andersonville prison, even thought it was still under construction in southern Georgia. Andersonville became synonymous with death as nearly a quarter of its inmates died in captivity. Henry Wirz, commandant at Andersonville, was executed after the war for the brutality and mistreatment committed under his command. Originally designed for 10,000 men, it soon housed over 33,000 in quite deplorable conditions. The creek banks eroded, creating a swamp, which became part of the compound. Food was scarce, and guards were encouraged to “lessen the population” and were quite
brutal and violent to the prisoners.
List of Union soldiers who died and their cause of death:
    1869-American pathologist Alice Hamilton was born at New York, NY. She contributed to the workmen's compensation laws by reporting on the dangers to workers of industrial toxic substances. She taught at Harvard Medical School from 1919 until 1935. Hamilton died Sept 22, 1970, at Hadlyme, CT.
    1869 --John Willis Menard spoke to Congress in defense of his claim to a contested seat representing Louisiana's Second Congressional District, thus becoming the first black to speak to Congress. Congress decided against his claim, as well as the claim of the other contestant. Congressman James A. Garfield said "it was too early to admit a Negro to the U.S. Congress." So, Menard was actually the first black elected to Congress, in 1868, but he was not permitted to serve his term. He was reportedly paid by Congress a monthly salary for the term of office he was to fulfill. He was not only an active civil rights advocate, but a published poet.
    1872- Charlotte Ray, first Black woman lawyer, graduated Harvard University. She was employed by the Brooklyn School System. Around 1886 she married a man with the last name Fraim and moved to Woodside on Long Island. She died on January 4, 1911 from bronchitis at the age of 60. She was a person that stood up for what she believed in. She did much to help women black and white to gain equal rights to vote and to hold the same occupations at men

    1879-Sugar substitute Saccharine: Discovered by Constantine Fahlberg, who was working under the direction of Professor Ira Remsen at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, Fhalberg described the discovered in an article entitle “ On the Liquid Touensulphochloride,” which he submitted to the American Chemical Journal on this day. Saccharine is an edible substance 550 time sweeter than table sugar, but not absorbed by the body.
    1883- Oscar Hammerstein of New York City, grandfather of the famous composer, received a patent for the first practical cigar-rolling machine.
    1890-cornet player Freddie Keppard born New Orleans, LA Died 1933,,452708,00.html?artist=Freddie+Keppard
    1891- David Sarnoff, broadcasting pioneer, is born. Russian-born Sarnoff moved to New York at age nine, and at seventeen, he took a job as a telegraph messenger boy. He used his first paycheck to buy a telegraph and taught himself Morse code. Marconi's Wireless Telegraph Company hired him as a telegraph operator. In 1912, Sarnoff was the first telegraph operator to pick up the Titanic's distress call; He remained at his post for seventy-two hours, monitoring the call and passing on information. Sarnoff rose rapidly through the ranks of the company. He proposed that Marconi market a "radio music box" and, in 1921, became general manager of RCA. Sarnoff also set up the NBC radio network and established the first U.S. television service in 1939.
    1897- Marian Anderson born at Philadelphia (some sources say in 1899 or 1902), Anderson's talent was evident at an early age. Her career stonewalled by the prejudice she encountered in the US, she moved to Europe where the magnificence of her voice and her versatility as a performer began to establish her as one of the world's finest contraltos. Preventing Anderson's performance at Washington's Constitution Hall in 1939 on the basis of her color, the Daughters of the American Revolution secured for her the publicity that would lay the foundation for her success in the States. Her performance was rescheduled, and on Apr 9 (Easter Sunday) 75,000 people showed up to hear her sing from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and the performance was simultaneously broadcast by radio. In 1957 Anderson became the first African-American to perform with the New York Metropolitan Opera. The following year President Eisenhower named her a delegate to the United Nations. She performed at President Kennedy's inauguration and in 1963 received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.. Some historians cite this as the Lincoln Memorial performance the first strategic victory of the modern civil rights movement. Anderson died April 8,1993, at Portland, Oregon.
    1900 -a massive snowstorm set records from Kansas to New York. 18.7 inches of snow was measured at Topeka, Kansas in 24 hours -- the city's greatest 24 hour snowfall on record. 17.5 fell at Springfield, Illinois, 43 inches at Rochester, New York, 60 inches in the Adirondacks, and 31 inches at Northfield, Vermont.
    1902 - John (Ernst) Steinbeck (one of American’s best writers: The Grapes of Wrath, Cannery Row; known also for his many short stories and “Travels with Charlie,” which generated several television programs. died Dec 20, 1968) He lived a few blocks away from where I live now, and in the 1940’s and 1950’s wrote many of his books here.
    1902- Gene Sarazen, golfer, born Eugenio Saraceni at Harrison, NY. Sarazen was one of the game's greatest players and in his later years one of its greatest goodwill ambassadors. The inventor of the sand wedge, Sarazen was also the first to win the modern grand slam (the Masters, US Open, British Open and PGA), although not in the same year. During the 1935 Masters, he hit one of golf's most famous shots, a four-wood for a double eagle on the par-5 fifteenth hole of the final round. The shot enabled him to tie Craig Wood for the lead and defeat him in a playoff. Sarazen's last shot was the traditional ceremonial tee shot to open the 1999 Masters. Died at Marco Island, FL, May 13, 1999. 
    1904- James Ferrell, American author, novelist and short story writer, best known for his Studs Lonigan trilogy. Born at Chicago, IL, he died at New York, NY, Aug 22, 1979.
    1907- singer Mildred Bailey, Tekoa, WA. Tagged Mr. and Mrs. Swing she led a band with her husband Red Norvo, did solo vocals, and had her own radio show.

    1909-guitarist Harrison Verrett born Napoleonville, LA
    1909 Ben Webster Birthday
    1912- Hilton Lee Smith, baseball player born at Giddings, TX. Smith was a dominant pitcher in the Negro Leagues. he possessed a superb curve ball and was often considered the equal or better of Satchel Page. Died at Kansas City, MO, Nov 18, 1983.
    1913 – American playwright, author, screenwriter, Irwin Shaw, born Irwin Gilbert Shamforoff in Bronx in New York Best known for his book “The Young Lions.” Died, 1984
    1923- guitarist Chuck Wayne born New York City.
    1923- tenor sax player Dexter Gordon, Los Angeles, CA
(saw him play many times; Often at the jazz house in Half Moon Bay --I believe.)
Died April 26, 1996
    1926- first jazz concert held at Chicago’s Coliseum, sponsored by Okey Records.
    1928-guitarist Roy Montrell born New Orleans, LA.
    1929- the first movie by a major company for an African-American audience was shown this day at the Gaiety Theatre, New York City. It was the William Fox Movietone feature “Heats in Dixie” a musical comedy drama of the South featuring 200 entertainers. It was a Paul Sloane production, written and directed by Eugene Walter, with story dialogue by Walter Weems, The featured actor was Stephen “Stepin” Fetchit. The entire case, with one exception, was African-American.
    1930--Birthday of Joanne Woodward, won Academy award for best actress, The Three Faces of Eve (1957) and nominated for several others. Won several Emmys for her TV work; perhaps most remembered as long time wife of Paul Newman (Newman's Own).
    1932--Birthday of Elizabeth Taylor, a complex and headline grabbing private life and her violet eyes in a exquisite face, often eclipses the fact that she has won two Academy Awards for best actress: Butterfield 8 (1960) and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1966) and been nominated three other times. Helped form pioneer AIDS-fighting organization Am-Far and is a cosmetic executive. Her mother was actress Sara Sothern.
    1934- Consumer advocate Ralph Nader born Winsted, Connecticut. His claim to fame was his 1965 book, “Unsafe at Any Speed: The Designed-In Dangers of the American Automobile.” Today he is an active political candidate for change.
    1935 - The 7th Academy Awards ceremony was held at the Los Angeles Biltmore Hotel (for the films of 1934). Actor/writer Irvin S. Cobb hosted the big show. "It Happened One Night" swept the awards, capturing Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director (Frank Capra), Best Actor (Clark Gable) and Best Actress (Claudette Colbert). A miniature version of Oscar was presented to child star, Shirley Temple “ grateful recognition of her outstanding contribution to screen entertainment during the year 1934.”
    1945---WATSON, WILSON DOUGLAS Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division. Place and date: Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 26 and 27 February 1945. Entered service at: Arkansas. Born: 18 February 1921, Tuscumbia, Ala. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as automatic rifleman serving with the 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, 3d Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Iwo Jima, Volcano Islands, 26 and 27 February 1945. With his squad abruptly halted by intense fire from enemy fortifications in the high rocky ridges and crags commanding the line of advance, Pvt. Watson boldly rushed 1 pillbox and fired into the embrasure with his weapon, keeping the enemy pinned down single-handedly until he was in a position to hurl in a grenade, and then running to the rear of the emplacement to destroy the retreating Japanese and enable his platoon to take its objective. Again pinned down at the foot of a small hill, he dauntlessly scaled the jagged incline under fierce mortar and machinegun barrages and, with his assistant BAR man, charged the crest of the hill, firing from his hip. Fighting furiously against Japanese troops attacking with grenades and knee mortars from the reverse slope, he stood fearlessly erect in his exposed position to cover the hostile entrenchments and held the hill under savage fire for 15 minutes, killing 60 Japanese before his ammunition was exhausted and his platoon was able to join him. His courageous initiative and valiant fighting spirit against devastating odds were directly responsible for the continued advance of his platoon, and his inspiring leadership throughout this bitterly fought action reflects the highest credit upon Pvt. Watson and the U.S. Naval Service.
    1946—Top Hits
Let It Snow - Vaughn Monroe
Symphony - The Freddy Martin Orchestra (vocal: Clyde Rogers)
I Can’t Begin to Tell You - Bing Crosby with the Carmen Cavallaro Orchestra
Guitar Polka - Al Dexter
    1946 - The fourth of the “Road” films, "Road to Utopia", starring Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour and Robert Benchley, opened in New York City. Bing and Bob wound up in Alaska posing as "It’s Anybody’s Spring”. escaped killers in order to locate a lost gold mine. Tunes from the flick: "Put It There, Pal", "Welcome to My Dreams", "Would You?", "Personality", "Sunday, Monday, or Always", "Goodtime Charlie"
    1948-The jeep was made by Bantam Motor Company for the US Army. In issued a restraining order, preventing the Willys-Overland Company from representing that it had order to protect its patent rights, the company appealed to the Federal Trade Commission who this day developed the Jeep. Willys-Overland did, in fact, end up producing the Army vehicle that would come to be known as the Jeep ( actually Ford built the most as Willy could not keep
up with the demand), but the patent was owned by the Bantam Motor Company.
    1950- the twenty-second amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, limiting the presidential off to two terms.
    1951- singer/politician Lee Atwater born Atlanta, GA
    1954—Top Hits
Oh! My Pa-Pa - Eddie Fisher
Make Love to Me! - Jo Stafford
Cross Over the Bridge - Patti Page
Wake Up, Irene - Hank Thompson
    1955- Neal Schon, vocalist and guitarist with the hard-pop band Journey, was born in San Mateo, California. The group's fourth LP, "Infinity," sold a million copies in 1978. Three years later, "Escape" became Journey's first number-one LP. A single from it, "Open Arms," hit number two on the Billboard chart. Journey is said to be the first rock band to inspire a video game - "Journey - Escape" was in the arcades in late 1982.
    1956- Elvis Presley's releases "Heartbreak Hotel"
    1956- Little Richard's first Number One R&B hit, "Slippin' and Slidin'," backed with "Long Tall Sally," is released on Specialty.
    1962- Gene Chandler's "Duke of Earl" reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The record, released only ten days after Chandler signed with Vee-Jay records in Chicago, remained in the top spot for three weeks.
    1962—Top Hits
Duke of Earl - Gene Chandler
The Wanderer - Dion
Norman - Sue Thompson
Walk on By - Leroy Van Dyke
    1963 - The New York Yankees' Mickey Mantle, signed a baseball contract worth $100,000, a far cry from his 1949 contract which Mantle had signed for $1,100. In April of 1953, Mantle was said to have hit the longest home run. Batting left-handed in Griffith Stadium, in Washington, DC, Mantle hit the 460-foot sign, with the ball flying an estimated 565 feet. In 1962, Mantle appeared in the movie "That Touch of Mink". In 1995, Mickey Mantle died in Texas.
    1966 -Ladies Figure Skating Championship in Davos won by Peggy Fleming of US
    1969 - A record snowstorm in Maine came to an end. Two to four feet of snow buried southern and central Maine, with a state record of 57 inches reported at West Forks. Drifts covered many single story homes, and the weight of the snow collapsed many roofs. Two to four feet of snow also buried northeastern Vermont and northeastern Massachusetts. In New Hampshire, Mount Washington NH reported 97.8 inches of snow, a record storm total for New England.
    1970—Top Hits
Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)/Everybody is a Star - Sly & The Family Stone
Hey There Lonely Girl - Eddie Holman
Bridge Over Troubled Water - Simon & Garfunkel
It’s Just a Matter of Time - Sonny James
    1970 - Simon and Garfunkel received a gold record for the single, "Bridge Over Troubled Water". The duo was so impressed with their deserved achievement that they played the gold disc on their stereo. But they heard Mitch Miller’s "Bridge on the River Kwai" instead, and on the same Columbia label they recorded for! Amazing but weird, huh?
    1972 -unseasonably mild weather prevailed throughout the central US. Temperatures soared to 83 degrees in Kansas City, Missouri, setting an all-time high record for the month of February.
    1973 - Baseball star Dick ‘Don’t Call Me Richie’ Allen signed a three-year pact with the Chicago White Sox for a reported $675,000 after leaving the Philadelphia Phillies.
    1973- 200 members of the American Indian Movement, led by Russell Means and Dennis Banks, occupied Wounded Knee, SD, a town on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Their demands included a review of treaties between the federal government and indigenous peoples, a Senate investigation into the treatment of Native Americans, and fee elections of tribal leaders. The occupation ended on May 8 when the group surrendered to federal marshals. Gunfights during the siege killed one marshal and two protesters. Wounded Knee was the site of a massacre in December 1890 when Army troops machine-gunned 200 Sioux men, women, and children.
    1977- Center Stan Mikita of the Chicago Blackhawks, scored the 500th goal of his career in Chicago’s 4-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks. Mikita finished his career with 541 goals and entered the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983.
    1978—Top Hits
Stayin’ Alive - Bee Gees
(Love Is) Thicker Than Water - Andy Gibb
Just the Way You Are - Billy Joel
Don’t Break the Heart that Loves You - Margo Smith.
    1980- The 22nd Annual Grammy Award winners for 1979 are announced. The Doobie Brothers' "What a Fool Believes" wins both Record and Song of the Year. Billy Joel's "52nd Street" wins both Album of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.
    1982 -- Earl “ Square Eyes” Anthony becomes first pro bowler to win more than $1 million. Anthony, voted "Bowler of the Millennium" later falls down stairs in his retirement and dies August 14, 2001 as a result.
    1984 -a severe winter storm, which began on the 26th, spread blizzard conditions across Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. 24 inches of snow fell in the Vichy-Rolla area in Missouri. 22 inches was reported in southern Illinois. Winds frequently gusted to 40 and 50 mph. Interstate 65, which connects Indianapolis with Chicago, was impassable for several days due to extensive drifting of the snow. Thunderstorms were reported which added to the heavy snow amounts.
    1986- Van Halen released "Why Can't This Be Love," their first single since Sammy Hagar replaced David Lee Roth as lead singer. It would rise to number three on the Billboard chart.
    1986—Top Hits
How Will I Know - Whitney Houston
Kyrie - Mr. Mister
Sara - Starship
There’s No Stopping Your Heart - Marie Osmond
    1987-Former White House Chief of Staff Donald Regan resigns after the Tower Commission reports
gives him responsibility for the Iran-Contra affair to trade guns for hostages with money going to
the Nicaraguan Contras.
    1988- Debi Thomas, figure skater, becomes first Black American to win a medal at the Winter Olympics. After her Olympic career, she toured for several years then returned to school. Thomas completed her education to become a physician, and today is a practicing orthopedic surgeon
    1991- Allied troops entered Kuwait City, Kuwait, four days after launching a ground offensive. President George Bush declared Kuwait to be liberated and ceased all offensive military operations in the Gulf War. The end of military operations came at 9pm, EST, 100 hours after the beginning of the land attack. At 9 p.m. (EST), U.S. President George Bush said on live television, “Kuwait is liberated. Iraq’s army is defeated. I am pleased to announce that at midnight tonight, exactly 100 hours since ground operations began and six weeks since the start of Operation Desert Storm, all United States and coalition forces will suspend offensive combat operations”. Feb 26 is commemorated as Liberation Day in Kuwait.
    1991- James Brown was paroled in Columbia, South Carolina after serving 15 months of a six-year-term for leading police on a chase through South Carolina and Georgia. He recently performed at the Oakland Coliseum at age 71 and got rave reviews from all the newspapers.
    1992 -Tiger Woods, 16, becomes youngest PGA golfer in 35 years.
    1995- Canadian singer Celine Dion made British chart history by becoming the first artist in more than 30 years to have both the number-one album and single for five straight weeks. Dion topped the singles chart with "Think Twice" and the album chart with "The Color of My Love." The last time that happened for five consecutive weeks was in 1964 with "I Feel Fine" and "Beatles for Sale."
    2006—African Burial Ground National Monument Established by President George W. Bush, who signed a proclamation declaring a seven-acre plot at the corners of Duane and Elk Streets in Lower Manhattan, New York, to be a national monument. From the 1609s to the 1790s, this land served as a cemetery for both free and enslaved Africans and is believed to be the resting place of more than 15,000 people.



Winter Poem

To a Mouse

        - A Poem by Robert Burns

((Written by Burns after he had turned over the nest of a tiny field mouse with his plough. Burns was a farmer and farmers are generally far too busy to be concerned with the health of mice. This poem is another illustration of Robert Burn's tolerance to all creatures and his innate humanity.) John Steinbeck title “Of Mice and Men” comes
from this poem. editor))

Wee, sleekit, cowran, tim'rous beastie,
O, what panic's in thy breastie!
Thou need na start awa sae hasty,
Wi' bickering brattle!
I wad be laith to rin an' chase thee,
Wi' murd'ring pattle!

I'm truly sorry Man's dominion
Has broken Nature's social union,
An' justifies that ill opinion,
Which makes thee startle,
At me, thy poor, earth-born companion,
An' fellow-mortal!

I doubt na, whyles, but thou may thieve;
What then? poor beastie, thou maun live!
A daimen-icker in a thrave 'S a sma' request:
I'll get a blessin wi' the lave,
An' never miss't!

Thy wee-bit housie, too, in ruin!
It's silly wa's the win's are strewin!
An' naething, now, to big a new ane,
O' foggage green!
An' bleak December's winds ensuin,
Baith snell an' keen!

Thou saw the fields laid bare an' wast,
An' weary Winter comin fast,
An' cozie here, beneath the blast,
Thou thought to dwell,
Till crash! the cruel coulter past
Out thro' thy cell.

That wee-bit heap o' leaves an' stibble,
Has cost thee monie a weary nibble!
Now thou's turn'd out, for a' thy trouble,
But house or hald.
To thole the Winter's sleety dribble,
An' cranreuch cauld!

But Mousie, thou are no thy-lane,
In proving foresight may be vain:
The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men,
Gang aft agley,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!

Still, thou art blest, compar'd wi' me!
The present only toucheth thee:
But Och! I backward cast my e'e,
On prospects drear!
An' forward, tho' I canna see,
I guess an' fear!




The object is to insert the numbers in the boxes to satisfy only one condition: each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the digits 1 through 9 exactly once. What could be simpler?



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