The media's effort to make a cartoon out of a complex series of events that put the country in this fine kettle of fish, has many twists and turns worthy of discussion in the financial knot we are buried in now. For example, part of the nightmare is that households with credit card balances in this country carry an average balance of $17,000. If it is well known the country is not known as a whole as being savers. Now thru tougher economic times, saving is less of an option or habit as John Q Public struggles with his oil bill or monthly gas expenses. Isn't the tendency to whip out the plastic part of the problem though? The technical term is "poor impulse control" or clever ads that entice like sirens to buy this, gotta have that, you deserve some of these is part of the financial strain. If your household income can not afford Jimmy or Jane's cell phone, if your kid's car insurance of close to $2000 is too big a strain, as a parent, can you speak up? Before the end of the financial rope arrives do you discuss as a family we are making some changes for survival ? Are priorities outlined and established with a plan talked over at a family pow wow or the dinner table? And what is the reaction of your child? Scared, indignant, denial, sulking or amazement, willingness to help? As you try to understand the financial markets, the cycles, the influences and the shape of the situation we are in...consider too what happens in each household in America with the family financials. Look at Main Street..not just Wall Street. Is there a family budget? Are we living within our means? No money flowing in suddenly makes the basics of what you need to live scream out loudly for all to see. Are you watching the news and talking with your kids about the economy, showing them how to save money, or gratitude you have savings to get you thru a bump in the road? Loss of jobs happen, health issues cause financial ruin along with prolonged divorces. But don't you think some of the delinquent mortgages are with folks carrying an $800 car payment that is beyond their means or simply too many pieces of plastic in their wallet or purse tempting them as they wander thru the mall wondering what they don't have that they would really like to take home with them? Don't you think some depressed people "feed" the depression with the temporary "let's buy something" shopping habit to cheer themselves up artificially even though we all know the credit card bills will start to over flow mailboxes around the country? The country has financial symptoms...but the patient, the tax payers has ills that need correction too. What's your take? In northern Maine, local teenagers work for their ipods, pay for their winter clothes, contribute to household expenses and feel good doing it. They have jobs. The Aroostook County potato harvest is in full swing and Mainer's live within their means. They are cautious spenders because our local real estate values do not spike $200,000 up and down on each home like part of the country. Heck..you can buy a quality home for in the $20's..like this one to the right! Maine..the way life should be.
700 Billion Dollar Bail Out...But What About 850 Billion Dollar Credit Card Debt The Nation Carries?
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