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Thursday, 28 July 2011

A harrowing take of finances in Middle America from a woman of enormous sense!

I wrote the following to a lady friend in the USA:

Hi S.

Take a look at

I don't want to put it in my blog if he's not totally honest in his assumptions.

Incidentally my blog has moved again, this time permanently as I have given it a personal name:

Look after yourself,


I received the following reply:

Hi Drew,

I’m not sure what to say. Everyone is entitled to his opinion and I have no way to verify the truth of this person’s article, any more than you do. I know that the climate in America is unsettled and very unhappy. People feel they are being screwed by the government and I have to say I agree with them. Unemployment is running rampant? Ok, it’s nationally around 10% (at least those are the statistics the govt puts out.) it’s been higher, like around…13% I think, in Clinton’s term.

If they’re saying unemployment is over 50%, they may be counting high school grads who are in college and not job-seeking, or housewives who don’t want/need to work as they raise their young children (not that we see much of that anymore!) and senior citizens who are retired. That could make the numbers go up a lot!

American’s are trillions of dollars in debt? Ok, so…stop spending! Put those credit cards away! Have some common sense already! If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it! I wish our government would listen to that advice as well. I’m sick of the way they spend my tax dollars and put me in a precarious position, as well as endanger my future retirement years. I’ll probably work until I die or am so old and feeble I can’t work anymore.

So far, I have a job…with excellent medical benefits. I know how lucky and blessed I am. By that token, I also have to say that I’m within 16 payments of paying off my car loan, a six-year loan that should be paid off January 2014.

I’ve tried to be wise about my spending and taken extra payments out of my checking account when I had that much left over after the next payday. That allowed me to make a large payment on the principle a couple years ago, and I have six payments ahead in my checking account now…close to doing the principle thing again or just calling them for a payoff amount and getting it over with.

I’m trying to handle my money carefully. I don’t go out to dinner, I don’t have a lot of nice, new clothes, I try not to buy what I don’t really need so I’m able to save more—not that it’s worth it (my total interest for 6 months of my savings account this year is $0.26!) you read that right—twenty-six cents.

So I’m trying to be a responsible adult in a country where no one else seems to think that’s important—including the people running the place! My driveway needs replaced, I’d like my kitchen redone. I haven’t had new carpeting in the house since I’ve been in it. My ex bought the place in 1988 and never bothered. Gee, that’s only 23 years. I guess that’s not too bad, but I have no idea how long this carpeting was in the place before he bought it, either.

We definitely need some change at the top levels in the USA.

I would like to see:
  • All politicians (state/federal/county) limited to a maximum of two four-year terms. This isn’t supposed to be a career!
  • All politicians taxed just the same as the common man, at the same rates with the same (lack of) loopholes we “enjoy,” paying into, and collecting from, Social Security—just like me…with no other income benefits other than what you’ve managed to save while working, just like me…and paying taxes on the interest income,just like me.
  • No lifetime retirement plans with the premium medical benefits/huge pensions politicians now enjoy. Politicians should have the same health care the president is pushing on the American people. Either go out and get another job after your political term ends and get your medical benefits the same way I have to…or do without…just like me.

I could probably go on, but I’ll leave it here for now. I don’t know if my 2-cents is worth anything to you or your blog, but there it is.

Take care, give Pam a hug for me, wish Shiloh a happy 3rd birthday today! Picture attached. This is the baby picture that suckered me in to taking him to begin with. But he’s growing into an affectionate cat, even if he is still a mischief maker!

All the best,


A tale from middle America but I would guess S is exceptional, we met up through our similarities. Pam and I treat our finances very much the same way. No credit under any circumstances.

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