Thursday, June 28, 2012

How Frugality Helps with Augmenting the Debt Consolidation Process

How frugality helps with augmenting the debt consolidation process

Debt consolidation helps you to pay down debts, without you having to feel the pressure of making several payments in a month. However, with the constraint in job being so high, it is just as important for you to save money, as it is for you to pay down debts. However, in making the debt payments even through debt consolidation and managing the everyday expenses, you may be left with almost little or no money for savings. Thus, it would be wise of you to follow a frugal budget, so as to lower the level of your expenses.

Going frugal can be fun

Going frugal – how hard is that a job; you must be wondering. If you really want to save money, it is better to try out frugality. And, this it can actually be fun. For, when you will be able to find more money in hand than usual, it would be nothing but a pleasurable feeling for you. Moreover, if you find some extra money in hand, you may easily be able to pay down the consolidated debt, even faster than usual. This again can help you save more money on debt payments (a possibility mainly with regards to balance transfer and loan consolidation).

When you transfer the balance from all of the credit cards with high interest rate to a new credit card, with 0% balance transfer offer, the interest rate lowers. However, this is just a limited period offer, as it is going to end after some months or may be a year. So, if you fail to pay off the consolidated debt within the offer period, with the introduction of the interest rate, it may become tough, yet again, for you to make the payments.

So, it is obvious that frugality helps you with paying down debts through debt consolidation, even more easily than before. Now, the question is how can frugal be fun? Trying out new dishes can be fun for those who love experimenting. In case of frugality, you can save money mainly through grocery couponing. So, you may be required to plan the weekly meals based on the grocery you will be able to buy using the coupons. Thus, you may have to think of new dishes.

Again, getting more at same price is a fun thing too. For example, you can save money on gasoline if you buy gasoline either after evening or in the early morning. This is because, weather remains cool during these times, and gasoline remains dense in cold weather. Thus, you will be able to get more for the same price. These are some of the little things that can both be fun, and can help you save money too.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Casey Serin is Still a Popular Guy

Wow. I didn't realize Casey Serin was still such a popular guy in 2009. I think it's been close to 2 years since his story unraveled and his original blog was sold/shutdown. I made a little post called " Casey Serin for Congress " awhile back. I am a litle surprised how many visitors came to my site looking for Casey Serin, including many World Famous Haterz. I guess it's just a trainwreck that keeps on going for some reason. People want to know whatever happened to Casey Serin.

For what it's worth, the Casey Serin plan is not really what I have in mind when I talk about "Frugal Capitalism." I've never had a $34 Jamba Juice or defaulted on a loan. My point was: When even a looser like Casey gets something sorta right and appears more rational than most members of Congress, that's not a good sign. And despite all the passionate calls for people like Casey to be punished, I sense that many ( of the same?) people really don't have a problem with far worse criminals running our country.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Casey Serin for Congress

Seriously. Well, maybe not.

However, it seems Casey has more common sense than Congress. At least on this one issue. Don't get me wrong. Casey Serin is not a likeable guy. He does not make a sympathetic character. This is a kid who bought eight houses without a job, and his timing was terrible. He made very bad deals, buying houses in multiple states far from home. His renovations were lousy and overpriced. He took on over $2 million in mortgage debt and owed a lot more than the houses were actually worth. He became the posterchild for everything wrong with real estate speculation and no money down stated income loans.

Declan McCullah from CNET recently wrote an article on Homeowner bailouts and talked to Casey Serin. You can read that article here: Homeowner Bailout Rewards Irresponsibility.

The Casey Serin highlights:
"I personally don't believe in bailouts," Serin said in an interview this week. "If you don't get hurt, what's going to stop you from taking on the risk next time? You're interfering with the natural order of things."

and

"Pain is one of the best ways to make change happen," said Serin, the speculator-turned-tell-all-blogger. "If you were just completely reckless about it, you deserve to fall flat on your face. I was reckless. But I don't know what I deserve."

Casey made a lot of bad decisions. He doesn't deserve any sympathy and certainly doesn't deserve a bailout. I understand the outrage and views of his "Haterz." I personally think he has a lot of problems and repugnant views. He is lazy and doesn't learn from his mistakes. He is uneducated and unwilling to change his destructive behavior. There are a lot of people who would like to see Casey Serin in prison. I don't know how much money he ended up stealing. I assume the banks recouped something from the foreclosures and short sales. Maybe he still owes half, or around $ 1 million. That's pretty bad. You could say Casey Serin stole a million bucks.

But this uneducated failed real estate speculator, a "looser", could teach the political class a thing or two. Unfortunately, the government never learns anything either. Their first reaction to any "crisis" is to "do something" and "doing something" usually means taking an irrational action that is almost guaranteed to produce the opposite results.

The government produces absolutely nothing of value. They don't create anything. Just like Casey Serin. They don't do any type of work that can't be better performed by private individuals. What they do is confiscate money and dole it out to their friends. They make and repay favors. The State steals money and redistributes it to people and organizations that deserve to fail. And they do this to the tune of billions or trillions of dollars. I would bet that each and every U.S. Congressmen is personally responsible for the theft of more than a couple million bucks.

I'm not saying that Casey Serin doesn't deserve scorn and punishment, but he should have plenty of cell mates. And you can start with the Congress and many others who steal from taxpayers.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Capitalist Rankings of 2008 Presidential Candidates

Everyone wants a capitalist President, right? Just say No to Socialism?
I am ranking the United States Presidential candidates for 2008 who are on enough ballots to theoretically win the Electoral College. Of course, only 2 guys have a shot at winning in the real world. But if you REALLY care about economics, there is really no reason to vote for either Obama or McCain, unless:

There are no other options on the ballot. I don't think this is the case anywhere, especially when considering qualified Write-Ins.

Or, you really think McCain or Obama is 0.0000001% "less bad" and you live in a "swing state" with very close polling.

In other words, there is no reason to vote for McCain or Obama. There is no principled case.

Of course, I will not be voting. If I were I think my preferences would rank:

1. Bob Barr
2. Ralph Nader
3. Barack Obama
4. Chuck Baldwin
5. Cynthia McKinney
6. John McCain

Yes, I rank John Sydney McCain as a greater enemy of liberty/markets than even the far left Nader and McKinney.

Special Note:

Ron Paul is on the ballots in Montana and Louisiana. He is also a qualified write-in candidate in California. While I disagree with Ron Paul on several issues and dislike his political strategies, he is by far the BEST choice of any candidate appearing on any state's presidential ballot.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Good Advice from Tim Ferriss 4 Hour Workweek- Outsourcing

My last few posts have been about economics and politics. I can tell you there is one issue where ALL major political candidates are dead wrong. That is the issue of Outsourcing and "jobs going overseas."

This is not as much a political issue as an economics, moral, and personal decency issue. Sorry to all the xenophobic economically illiterate Lou Dobbs sucking political idiots...

Outsourcing is GOOD. Yep. And sometimes losing jobs is GOOD. Some jobs are meant to be lost. Anyone who professes to be a free market capitalist simply cannot be a protectionist. Any politician who tells you he believes in economic freedom and then talks about "saving jobs from going overseas" is a liar. This is just not compatible.

The reality is most politicians, even if they "get it" on economics, feel they have to pander to get votes. And as this election has certainly shown most American voters are idiots. Sorry, but it's true.

People are motivated by fear- fear of terrorists, fear of losing their jobs to "furriners", and so on. Voters are not rational individuals. This is why I explained voting was worthless in a previous post. Politically, people act out of fear and a desire for power. If you can play to their fears and make empty promises, you can get political POWER.

No one wants to hear that Freedom is GOOD. They want to be coddled and told that government will "take care of them." Government will help you keep your job, keep your house, give you a pony,etc.

For some reason no one wants to be an adult. no one wants to be RESPONSIBLE for their lives. The reality is life is about choices. And people should be responsible for the outcomes.

Meanwhile, when you exclude the protectionists, idiots, and whiners, there is another type of individual. Someone who goes about his business trying to do the best he can under the circumstances. This is someone who EMBRACES the economic power of the global economy and sees it for what it is- an opportunity for MANY people to increase their standard of living while voluntarily exhcanging goods and services for mutual benefit.

A lot of readers come here looking for reviews and information about The 4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss. For all its faults ( there are a few but that's another story) Tim Ferriss's book has a lot of good points. In pursuing "lifestyle design" and personal business efficency, The Four Hour Workweek makes good economic sense on a number of issues- without bowing down to the current wave of political correctness bullshit when it comes to outsourcing.

One of the highlights of the book is the idea of outsourcing certain tasks to virtual personal assistants- often "overseas" in India. This idea is intriguing and seems like it could be great advice for people who want to do things like spend more time with their family- rather than whining about poltics and embracng bigoted philosophies.

This is probably an idea most "regular folk" would never think of but perhaps one worth looking into.

My friend was reading "The World is Flat" and we got into a discussion about that book and 4-Hour Workweek.

He said " Wow, you can hire an Indian assistant for 1500-2000 bucks a month and have them do all the work while you are sleeping." Sounds great to me. Figure out how much money you need to live, delegate everything and live off the "global arbitrage."

My friend then made some comments about how when everyone else is unemployed "people who think like we do" will be doing alright.

Now I certainly hope there isn't massive unemployment. But the reality is the United States will NEED to shed some jobs and drop some industries to keep our economy going. But that is the way it has always been. Certain jobs become antiquated and obsolete whle BETTER jobs take their place. People who want to do well will. They go back to school, get better training, whatever it takes. No one owes anyone a cradle to grave guaranteed lifestyle. Certainly not the government and politicians.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The "NoBama" Lady and Socialist Presidential Candidates

I saw a lady in the grocery store wearing a shirt that said "NoBama" and on the back it read "Vote Against Socialism in 2008." I find this interesting because I assume she supports John McCain. Maybe I shouldn't assume this. Perhaps she supports Chuck Baldwin, Bob Barr, or Charles Jay. For some reason I doubt it.

The interesting thing about John McCain is that this guy is the wrong choice for capitalists who care about economics. McCain has admitted that he does not know much economics. In fact he even deferred to Phil Gramm and his team of advisers ( reminiscent of Romney's team of lawyers). When Ron Paul was allowed to ask McCain a question during one debate McCain could not give an answer. He scrunched his little old face like only John McCain can and said something like " Well Ron ( or maybe, my friend), that's why I am a leader. As President I would have the right advisors like our friend Phil Gramm.." Or something like that; you get the point.

Of course when Phil Gramm made some controversial capitalist remarks, McCain repudiated Gramm and said that he does not speak for him. Except, of course, when he does.

McCain was also against the socialist housing "bailout"- until he voted for it. Sorry John, paying off banks does not make one a "real" capitalist. Coming out against earmarks but outlawing political speech is not going to cut it either. This is also a guy who says things like "so-called freedom of speech." This may be another issue entirely, but McCain the non-capitalist also has disdain for the Bill of Rights.

When someone is a walking billboard for opposing socialism, I would expect him to care a great deal about capitalism. I don't think a capitalist can support someone like John McCain- someone who has never met a socialist "bi-partisan compromise" he didn't like. McCain is not a conservative capitalist and certainly not a small government free-marketer. No, if any label fits McCain it is the oxymoronic "National Greatness Conservative", which most closely translates to "national socialist." This is someone who LOVES big government and socialist spending as long as it aims to make the country "great" in his vision.

McCain tries to have it both ways. He is like John Kerry with twice the flip and three times the flop. He wants to be a capitalist only when politically convenient. He also has shown that he can stand up to the Evangelical hate movements, but then says he " doesn't believe in gay adoption" because both a mother are father are required to raise a child ( I don't know if he also opposes straight single adoptions). He doesn't go to church- but tells interviewers his perfect Sunday includes attending his local Baptist Church.

I understand how politics works, but McCain and his supporters have no room to talk about anything.

Is Barack Obama a socialist? uh, probably. Am I voting for him? No ( though I am rooting for his victory for other reasons). Is McCain any better? Not at all- at least not to capitalists, conservatives, libertarians, free marketers, Constitutionalists,etc. If you belong to any of those groups McCain is about as worthy as his friends Teddy Kennedy and Hillary Clinton.

Obama may be an empty suit, but it seems like McCain is an empty sack.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Recycling Toilet Paper and Delivering Pizzas is NOT the Solution!

I started this blog because of the irrational "personal finance" advice being offered/peddled everywhere. It's bad enough that many people choose to attend the Church Of Dave Ramsey ( who did NOT get rich by being debt free, but that's another story). Now we also have thousands of personal finance blogs, many with thousands of readers, who preach extreme frugality and credit aversion.

The hallmark of these bloggers is projecting their own failures and insecurities onto others and packaging it as advice. It is like the recovering alcoholic who chastises family members who have a glass of wine at dinner. Hey buddy, just because YOU ruined your life and became an irresponsible drunk doesn't mean I can't exercise my own freedoms. The typical personal finance blogger is just like that alcoholic- someone who could not "handle credit" and racked up tens of thousands of dollars in debt. They will tell you that if you so much as accept a credit card or student loan, your life will soon spiral out of control. The debt spending is addictive. Today you are using it to buy groceries or finance a college education. If you continue down this path you will soon find yourself spending your days at seedy strip bars snorting coke off strippers, using your American Express to pay for lap dances while taking cash advances to buy 8balls and pay your bookie. Your family will disown you, your teeth and hair will fall out, and God will cast you out of his kingdom.

And god forbid you "waste" your money on things like shoes that fit or double ply toilet tissue. Everyone knows that the best way to live is working 2 ( or more) minimum wage jobs while clipping coupons and holding your clothes together with duct tape.

If it seems like you don't earn enough money, you have 2 choices. Either cut your spending more or get a second job delivering pizzas. How can you save more money? Considering making your own soap and avoid using or drinking clean water. Turn your thermostat up or down. You may save 17 cents on your electric bill to put towards CFL bulb replacement. Force yourself to only eat ramen. Do not consume anything with nutritional value. It's your money or your life! This stuff is way more important than your physical health.

Once you but back to top ramen twice a day and have your water turned off, it is time to make some more money. How? There is only one answer here. Deliver pizzas, of course! Pizza places are always hiring for these jobs and it is an easy way to make a couple extra bucks. You will make lots of money and you will not put much wear on your car. It is extremely safe and you will never have to worry about being mugged or anything like that. Everyone who orders pizza has a lot of free cash and will give you at least a $5 tip for every pie you deliver. The money will add up in no time. While some people are wasting their time doing things like going to school or spending time with their families, you will save enough money to buy a used Hyundai with cash. Some people will even take out LOANS to advance their careers. Can you imagine spending $200 a month on loan payments to get a job making $50,000 a year? No thanks. If you stick with your minimum wage career and deliver pizzas on the side, you can easily make 19 or even 20 thousand dollars, with NO DEBT. And while those people are spending an extra $3 a year to buy toilet paper that doesn't hurt when they wipe, you have switched to leaves. And you even use the compost from your outhouse to help grow your garden. A couple times a year you can have some peppers with your ramen!

If you are having trouble making enough money or keeping your expenses down, that is the perfect 2 part plan. Obvious isn't it?