Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Whatever happened to living within your means? Coveting is not a good thing folks. Coveting causes serious damage. And jealousy isn't productive as well, envy, that doesn't make you happy, does it?
Truly, being a greedy grabber can wind you up in the poor house, that is, if you can afford the mortage on it after that luxury home mortage of yours had you go belly up. Sucks, doesn't it?
So, how did this country get where it is? We'll take those big eyes and selfish desires and throw in the "credit machine." Maybe I'm being hard on calling wanting a big luxury home a "selfish desire", but hey, were you really being honest with yourself when you stepped into that septic field of finance? Could you really afford what you were getting into? Did you need that "luxury home" or could you have settled for say, something more in line with your real budget? Wants versus needs, amazing how people get stupid confusing the two.
Anyhow, getting back to how we made this mess in the housing and mortgage market, well, we continue by throwing into the mix a hard charging, motivated mortage broker willing to "work with you" on getting approved (for something really over your head) ... "We want to make sure that we get you the most money we can." Says Bob, the card shark mortgage broker. "We'll just tweak these numbers a bit..." AND POOF, With a little bit of Enron Style accounting you have a baseball field in Houston named after you. Oh, the dream of having such a big expensive home has come true, and then the rates adjusted and that first tax bill came in too. "Enron Field" just became "Fifth Amendment Field." That is America's problem, at least part of it.
I'm not a religious nut, or a bible beater, but in the 10 commandments (basic guidelines for life really), doesn't it say, "Thou Shall not Covet thy Neighbor's goods?" As much as George Carlin put it, "but that's good for the economy", it really isn't. I love George's blunt and honest comedy, but truthfully, keeping up with the Joneses isn't a good practice. And keeping up with the Joneses seems to be taking apart the American home today and sadly, it is a catalyst that is helping take apart the American Family too.
Now that we kind of understand that perhaps selfish desires played a big role in us being played as a sucker with pockets a little more shallow than we were honest enough to admit, let us look at a problem as deep as the mortage crunch and sadly, one that troubles me. This is the Mortage Meltdown and breakup of a marriage.
I was reading an article on MSNBC, Is mortgage crisis causing divorces and see that there is a correlation to mortgage busts and marital busts and I have to say to anyone contemplating divorce because of this, please, stop and think, "for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer...", you know the vows, you took them the day that you promised to spend the rest of your life with the person sharing your "luxury" home with. I can understand divorcing an abuser, I divorced someone who lied to me in our vows and was a vicious and calculating abuser. Thankfully we never bought a house together, she drained all the money before that could ever happen. But for someone who truly married for love and friendship, those vows should stand through hard times.
Divorce can be a bitch on your finances if there is truly a "need" to split up, but I don't think a mortage meltdown causes a "need" to divorce. Mortage meltdown? Why take a financially hard time and make it more difficult? In a trying and difficult time as such, you should pull together, work it out, discuss solutions (other than divorce which isn't a solution). And if there are kids involved, that only makes the matter worse. Mommy and Daddy are breaking up because they can't afford our house, now, they can't afford to be parents together?
Children seeing the loss of a home can cope with and adjust to a new apartment if you have to scale back. Sticking together and working through this difficult time will teach your children modesty, to be money wise, to be conservative when they need to be by watching their parents being the good example.
In a time of financial crisis in this country, for those reading this article, if you know someone contemplating divorce simply because of a mortgage problem, tell them to read this and tell them to reconsider divorcing. Working out the credit crunch, you'll know what it is to work as a team and if you have kids, they'll feel that deeper bond because you were able to get through this dark time.
Yes, finances can be a trouble spot for a lot of couples, but you have to work together. Remember, "for better or for worse", you're in this together. Listen to each other's proposals, hear what each of you are saying, communicate productively. Remember, because A.R.M.s adjusted out of your financial reach doesn't mean that your loving ARMs have to stop reaching around each other. You can get through it, it'll just take a little work and a lot of cooperation.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
These things known, in an era of cell phones and who is the best, we have to remember land lines and our homes or what may be a temporary home. With cell phones, sure they are great to have. But no matter how many minutes your plan has, minutes is the key. They run out. Having cost effective home phone service is a wonderful thing, but as I said, getting displaced from your home can be very unsettling. Thus, the wonderful world of Vonage.
Why Vonage you might ask? Several reasons make Vonage the choice for me and I say, I think Vonage may be the right choice for you. Imagine coming home from work, the person who used to say "I love you" now has you served with an order of protection. You are devastated, you are now separated from your home for at least a short spell, maybe longer. You need a place to stay, a base of operation regardless of how short or long the term. You've been cut off from home, cut off from communications. And heck, she's got an order of protection against you so it's not like she's going to be forwarding phone messages to you, right? Vonage can solve that problem for the most part. Let me explain...
In today’s era, high speed broadband and DSL services are offered in many areas, some even offer their own home phone service but none truly offer the luxury that Vonage has. That luxury is “portability.” You can't pick up Comcast and take it with you. AT&T Yahoo DSL the same. Pac-Bell, Southwestern Bell, Mama and Papa Bell, Taco Bell, all are plugged into a residence. Vonage is not.
Imagine the scenario, you are now staying at your sister Debbie’s for a few months, trying to recover from the devastation, getting back on your feet. Sure, sis has been great to help you out, but imposing on her for everything would be inconsiderate. You have to call co-workers, friends, colleagues and lawyers. Monopolizing your sister's phone may be something that would try her patience. You need a communications solution that lifts some of the burden and again, I see Vonage as the light at the end of that tunnel.
Staying at your sisters, sure she has the land line, again, it exists with the potential of being monopolized by yourself. But, alas, sis has high-speed internet service from "xyz cable." While staying at your sisters, you don't want to order phone service from a hardwire company. After all, once you are gone, you have to go through the gyrations of calling, scheduling termination or movement of the line. Too many headaches in dealing with the hard-line. You could impose on your sister to order phone service on her cable service, but again, an imposition like this is best avoided. And again, if she let you order it, the headache of cancellation or movement of the line becomes a logistical pain in the butt. Vonage solves those problems.
Going to http://www.vonage.com/ and ordering phone service is the solution. They send you a router that you plug into the high speed internet. Tapping into your sisters high-speed is a no-brainer and wouldn't affect her in anyway. You don't interrupt TV, there is nothing to install aside from plugging in the router and your router is absolutely portable. No need to call and cancel or move service. Just unplug and go. Where ever there is a high-speed connection, there is phone service. AT&T can't brag about that, neither can the cable companies who are offering their own phone service.
Me, I have Vonage and I enjoy my service. Feature rich with call waiting, forwarding, conference calling, voice mail, caller ID, voice mail, free international long distance (to some places like Italy, France and the UK), cheap international long distance to many places (that is nice is you are an international caller) and free nationwide long distance (including international to Canada and Mexico) . These are just some of the numerous features Vonage offers. And for only $24.99 a month (unlimited plan), plus taxes, you can't beat it. As a Non-Custodial parent who has had my life shredded, Vonage was a cost effective communications solution that kept my lines of communication wide open, and at a great price.
If you are displaced from home or transient in some fashion and want to establish a small piece of stability, then Vonage phone service is that piece of stability you don't have to worry about. Visit them today at http://www.vonage.com/ and get connected. Vonage truly goes where you go.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
With that, I reprint for you an exerpt from from Glenn Sacks and his article, "John McCain on Fathers' Rights"
- Aspiring Republican presidential candidate John McCain contemptuously dismissed fathers' concerns over family law at a mid-day town hall meeting in Cedar Falls, Iowa today. Shared parenting activist Tony Taylor asked McCain if he "would be bold enough to address the issue of equal access to children for fathers that have gone through divorce." McCain testily replied: "I'm sorry to disappoint you, I am not going to overturn divorce court decisions. That's why we have courts and that's why people go to court and get a divorce. If I as President of the United States said this decision has to be overturned without the proper appeals process then I would be disturbing our entire system of government... But for me to stand here before all these people and say that I'm going declare divorces invalid because someone feels that they weren't treated fairly in court, we are getting into a, uh, uh, tar baby of enormous proportions."
Read Glenn's full article here: John McCain on Fathers' Rights
My McCain's statement shows that the most important part of America, The American Family isn't even on his agenda. Mr. McCain obvious has gone far on hot air, and now, I think he plucked a hole in his balloon. Mr. McCain may have been a POW, but obviously he is not truly an American Fighting Man. If the family isn't first, there is no America to lead. The best bet for America on the Republican Side is Ron Paul. What is your opinion? Who do you think would be the presidential candidate to put the American family first and stop the war that is going on internally in America? I want to hear your opinion.
Monday, February 11, 2008
Truly, I was surprised by the lack of participation from the folks who have been victimized by the family courts but have none the less pushed to make what was stated a reality. Within the next week, the basic infrastructure of the Judicial Accountability Project web site will be online.
Hopefully my pressing forward will help the many folks in the observable malaise see progress is being made, efforts are being made and perhaps that will help motivate participation in reclaiming our government and judicial system.
Bookmark http://www.judicialaccountabilityproject.org/ today and check back soon to see progress.
If you wish to participate, contribute ideas, tell us your story, please do. The Judicial Accountability Project web is almost there. I look foward to the many that can help make this a grass roots success.
Thanks to all who have helped and to those I know will help in the future. This is our government, we own it, let's make it happen.