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#54269 - 04/18/05 07:15 PM Re: OT: politics
Ajax Offline
axiomite

Registered: 12/30/03
Posts: 6255
Loc: Cleveland, Ohio
In reply to:

The average American owes about $8500 in credit card debt.


Well somebody out there has $17,000 in credit card debt, because I have zero. In fact, I have no debt whatsoever. Nada. Nil. Nothing. Zip! Does that mean I'm hurting the country?

Of course my lack of debt is offset by the fact that I have no assets either! Nada. Nil. Nothing. Zip! Unless you count a couple of sound systems.
_________________________
Jack

"People generally quarrel because they cannot argue." - G. K. Chesterton

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#54270 - 04/18/05 07:46 PM Re: OT: politics
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5440
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
>>Well somebody out there has $17,000 in credit card debt, because I have zero.

I found it highly amusing that to a credit card company, people who pay the full amount every month are called "deadbeats" because the CC company doesn't make any interest $$ off you, just the percentage they shave off the stores you shop at.

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#54271 - 04/18/05 11:31 PM Re: OT: politics
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16296
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
My only debt is the balance of my student loans. We paid everything else off and are slowly saving for a home downpayment to slightly offset the principle on our next major loan. California is not likely to see any of that money, though. This state's real estate is too rich for me.
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#54272 - 04/19/05 12:04 AM Re: OT: politics
bigjohn Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 3016
Loc: San Angelo, TX
peter- my family is on the same sheet of music as you and ajax. we have very few credit cards, just enough to do what we need with them. and we always request for our limit to be left the same, everytime they offer to raise them.. that way, when we ever do apply for loans, they cant count the top limit as total debt accured. plus, we pay off our balance every month, so we get no roll over finances charges. we do fall behind a bit around the holidays, but always get caught back up by feb or march.

aside from our normal regular bills(water, cable, phone, etc), the only reoccuring bill we have is the mortgage, her truck payment, and her student loans. thats it. i usually save up and pay cash for all large items, and i live by the motto, "if i dont have cash for it, i dont need it!!" . of course, you have to bend that rule a little when getting a home or car.

bigjohn


_________________________
EXCUSE ME, ARE YOU THE SINGING BUSH??

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#54273 - 04/19/05 06:47 AM Re: OT: politics
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10964
Loc: Central NH
You guys are lucky. If my debt had to be described with one word, it would be "crushing".

This little Axiom/HT "fling" I've had recently is the only luxury we've had for about ten years (the last time we took a vacation). We spend $15k - $25k most years on equipment upgrades, all of it cash. When we started the business 15 years ago, no bank would fund the capital for a photography studio, despite a good business plan and sales forecasts. Bankers look at photography (and now video production) as a business that many hobbyists like to "play around in", so they're not looked at too favorably by bankers. All of those initial expenditures to grow into video production as well as expand the photography end of the business were done with credit cards.

Although that initial wave of credit was paid off, the second, third, fourth, etc… were done the same way. Here I am, 15 years later and still paying off debt. I work 12~16 hours a day, seven days a week. I work on New Year's, my Birthday, and, (till this past year) work on Christmas day. As mentioned, we don't vacation and I haven't had time to watch a movie on my HT in four weeks. Joyce and I have been married 16 years, and still don't feel confident enough in our finances or schedules to have kids.

I'm not an economist. I can't speak as to how "National debt" has enabled the country to grow. I can say that I've built a reputation in my business and equity in a building in a growing, "professional" side of town. Believe it or not, I'm not complaining, as I'm working in the field I chose.

But…..

Politics aside, National/Global economy aside, I can tell you that from where I stand:

Debt sucks.

_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#54274 - 04/19/05 08:30 AM Re: OT: politics
Ajax Offline
axiomite

Registered: 12/30/03
Posts: 6255
Loc: Cleveland, Ohio
Speaking of Credit, I know this has been commonly reported, but I thought I would mention it, in the off chance that someone may have missed it.

Those of you in the West and Midwest parts of the US are now entitled to one credit report per year, FREE OF CHARGE, from each of the 3 credit reporting companies. They will be available to those in the South and the East on June 1, and September 1, respectively.

AnnualCreditReport.com (The FAQ at this site will answer a LOT of your questions.)

I recommend you pay the extra 6.95 at Equifax to get your "Credit Score," which is not included in your "credit report." Spread the reports out over the year, and you can check your credit every 4 months. A good thing to do.

It's free, now, for many of us, and soon will be for the rest. Ya got no excuse any more.
_________________________
Jack

"People generally quarrel because they cannot argue." - G. K. Chesterton

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#54275 - 04/19/05 09:03 AM Re: OT: politics
craigsub Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/15/03
Posts: 1306
Mark - Just think where your business would be without the debt ... if I read your narrative correctly, your business would still be an idea, true ?

Yes, Paying debt OFF is a good idea, but, again, without people taking some risk and going into debt, we are in a depression.
_________________________
Remember, this is a HOBBY

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#54276 - 04/19/05 11:53 AM Re: OT: politics
Zarak Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/09/03
Posts: 1849
Loc: PA
I'm close to where you are BigJohn. Never carried a balance on a credit card, won't buy things unless I have cash for them, the only outstanding non regular bill payment monthly is the house. I might borrow for cars, but if I do I pay it off within a year. My wife still has car and student loan payments, but all of her income goes to that right now while mine handles everything else.

The one thing I know I would not handle well is not feeling like I am in control of my finances and that I had lots of debt. I don't need much, or buy a lot of things, but for the most part when there is something I want I want to be able to buy it without worrying about how am I going to pay for it.

This is probably why I feel our Govt. should do the same.

Craig, are there any numbers out there you know of over recent years that compare out deficit increase vs. our net worth increase per year?

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#54277 - 04/19/05 02:23 PM Re: OT: politics
bigwill2 Offline
aficionado

Registered: 03/25/05
Posts: 586
"... without people taking some risk and going into debt, we are in a depression."

If only I had some testes, I would have kept the old house when buying the new one. I was afraid the real estate market would burst its bubble (LOL, both house have doubled in value in the 3 years since) and leave me upside down in two houses. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
I don't begrudge anything to those who roll the dice and win. I do think bankruptcy laws are too kind to debtors, though.
As a teacher I have the enjoyable experience (over and over again) of witnessing the disbelief on kids' faces when they learn about the bizarre things we adults have come to accept as "right".

Regarding bankruptcy laws, "You mean you can just go out and buy a bunch of stuff, declare bankruptcy and then you don't ever have to pay the money back?"
Regarding abortion, especially partial birth abortions, "They do that?!!!!"
Regarding alcoholics and drug addicts who collect Social Security due to their "disabilities", "Huh? What? No way!"
Affirmative action, estate taxes, and a bunch of other stuff that I can't think of right now.

I guess you have to go to college or read the Times to learn why all this stuff is actually OK.


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#54278 - 04/19/05 03:28 PM Re: OT: politics
bigjohn Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 3016
Loc: San Angelo, TX
i just saw a deal on CNN a few days ago, where they are gonna try and pass new laws to toughen up the bankruptcy process. i guess someone finally figured it was just getting too easy to sign a piece of paper, and be free from debts. i have always thought it was a sham. i am sure it was intended to be used in good faith, and as a last resort.. but, it is clear that the system has been taken advantage of in the past decade or so.

in casual conversation over tha past few months.. i have discovered several people i know, about my same age, that have already filed bankruptcy..... i couldnt believe it. and they ALL acted like it was just no big deal.. got to keep their cars, credit cards wiped clean. now, they cant get any credit for the next 7 years.. but after that, its like a new start. so, somewhere in their mid to late 30's, they get to do it all over again. where is the fairness in that for the rest of us who actually PAY our bills.??

bigjohn
_________________________
EXCUSE ME, ARE YOU THE SINGING BUSH??

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