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Friday, November 30, 2012

Here’s An Idea…SAVING!

Here’s An Idea…SAVING!

When I was a kid I used to save money.  In the first grade we had a field trip to the local savings and loan.  Everyone opened up an account for one dollar and we took home a savings book.  We learned about interest.  MONEY EARNING MONEY!!

I guess I learned to save because I was a child of depression parents.  We never bought or received anything without being reminded how lucky we were to have it.  Children were starving in China, I was lucky to have spinach; when my dad was ten his toy was a hoop and a stick.  I was very lucky to have a bike.

When I got money either from my grandparents on my birthday, doing chores for an allowance or simply finding a quarter on the street I saved it.  I put some in the bank, and I squirreled some away in places that I would forget until I would find it years later. 

I would spend some money on comic books…10 cents apiece, candy…five cents for a Hershey bar, or when I really splurged, bowling…eighty-five cents for two games with shoe rental.  One year I went crazy with some Christmas money and bought a rifle cap gun for three dollars and fifty cents.  The gun broke after one year.  For years after I regretted that purchase and often calculated how much money I would have if I invested it in the bank to earn interest (at 3% compounded…$22.86 to date.)

Kids today, (kids being anyone under 27 years old) cannot spend their money fast enough.  They not only spend it as if it was going extinct, but they spend more than they have.  Give a kid $20 and he will have something that he just has to have that costs $35.  He will not wait until he saves up that extra $15, he will negotiate.

“Gee Dad, if you give me $15 today, you can just take $15 off whatever you were going to give me for my birthday.”

When my son was 18 he was already into me for Christmas and birthdays for the next 15 years.

It is this inability of the younger generations to save that got us into the economic malaise we have been in since 2008. 

Have a new Government program? Borrow!

Want a new 4000 square foot house?  No need to put 20% down, no need to have an income large enough to pay the mortgage, just put no money down, and take a balloon loan where you don’t have to pay the real cost for 5 years; by then I’m sure you’ll be making enough money to pay for it.  Besides real estate always goes up in value…doesn’t it?

The government is now deeply in debt.  Something needs to be done to shrink that debt.  We need to raise taxes.  We can’t ask for money from the poor or the middle class…their life is tough enough trying to cover those balloon mortgages. 

I know!

Let’s tax those rich assholes who’ve been saving and investing their money since they were five years old.  They have plenty by now, more than they can spend.  What’s the big deal? 

We just won’t ask them for anything this Christmas.*


*Cranky realizes this scenario does not cover the whole spectrum of our economic issues.  Please don’t get all political on me…It is called satire…making a point with a speck of truth.

Satire: a way of using humor to show that someone or something is foolish, weak, bad, etc. : humor that shows the weaknesses or bad qualities of a person, government, society, etc.       


  1. On the other hand, we have my boy (28) who works full time, plays on the weekends. He and his girlfriend have saved over 40K in the last two years. They really, really want to buy a house. :-)

    Generally speaking, though, you are correct.


  2. ". . . Money making money. . ."

    You remind me of something I saw once, about how our society inverts sex and money - we think of sex as a simple means of exchange (ie, of pleasure), and want our money to reproduce. . .


  3. I agree totally about saving and living within your means. There is, however, a big gray area you haven't discussed. You worked for an established company and you had a guaranteed base pay. You could plan and save accordingly. A bonus was just that, a bonus.

    For those of us who are self employed life is one giant crap shoot. It's a chicken or feathers existence. After a good year I was proud of myself for having saved a buttload of $$$. Then a couple of years later I had to draw down much of my savings in order to keep my company afloat. Win big, lose big. And that type lifestyle...small business/self employment is today a HUGE part of our economy and growing. And there are factors beyond our control (think 2008....Lehman.... Enron....WorldCom, MF Global, etc) that determine whether we can maintain our savings year to year. It's no longer as simple as putting money in a passbook account. I wish!


  4. So how much ARE you giving me for Christmas???

  5. I think that one of the big problems is that people are no longer encouraged to save. The Government wants people to spend as much as possible to rev up the economy, and banks no longer reward those who save with descent interest.

    And an a related note what's happening to cash? Our son caries no cash on him at any time--all debit card. Crazy.

  6. My parents taught me how to save, opened me a bank account. Oh wait, never gave me the option to go pull money out. After I left home and was married tried to get into said account and they had closed it. WTH.

  7. That is why some people are in the pile of shit they currently are in. I have saved since I could remember right now hubby and I put anything in the bank that we can. We have investments, 401K my daughters college fund that we started as soon as she was born. We are looking into moving into a larger house{we are city dwellers and we live in a small space with child and 2 dogs) but we are doing it slow and carefully because we will not allow ourselves to be be house poor EVER.

    Kids today do not save because they want more and need more the big old TV tells them that everyday. Their is also no more work ethic everyone want the money but they do not want to work for it.

  8. I feel the need to add one more speck of truth, and that would be we got here through unfunded wars. The last war we paid for was Vietnam. I was poor as hell back then and paying a sur-tax for that war. Remember? I believe people save. Purl's son does and so do lots of people. I don't recall having a say about that surtax. Perhpas it's time for another one.

  9. I waited to buy a house because I wanted to have that 20% down payment, and in the process screwed myself out of a large chunk of change that would have made a huge difference to our family.

    How? My company demutualized before I met the criteria to become a mutual policyholder, because one of the criteria to buy a mutual policy was to have owned a detached home of a minimum market value for at least 5 years.

    So if you were already financially stable, you could share in the company's success. If you were just starting out and willing to get risky with your real estate, you could share in the company's success. If you were just starting out and worked like a dog at the company and were patiently waiting to be able to buy a house you could afford, well that's called a sucker, my friend.

    No, I'm not bitter at all. Then there's my dad, who worked so hard his whole life, only to lose his retirement savings at 61 in the 2008 crash. Looks like he won't be retiring any time soon (or ever).

    What has adulthood taught me? Saving is overrated.

  10. We had quite a nice little nest egg saved up, then when Steven lost his job back in July and was worrying about money, I said "Isn't that what our savings are for? To help out when times are tough?" to which he replied "Hell no - that's our deposit money"

    I have to bow to his logic now - most of it (not all of it) went on our down payment on the mortgage, and I think he is now systematically trying to spend the rest of it on new tools in Lowe'

  11. Amen Sir, You are so right, it seems that kids do spend their money quicker than they make it, or borrow it, it's no wonder that they helped keep this administration in power..sigh

    Good point though saving money seems to be a thing of the past.

  12. I'm not absolutely sure about this, but I think maybe, just maybe you've opened a big can of worms! ;-)

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