Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Credit Card Debt – A Middle Class Rant IV

Well it’s about time for another one of my rants...credit card debt. There are a number of shows out there now ie - “Till Debt Do Us Part” that profile a couple or family with debt issues and provide them with debt counseling, if they listen to the counselor they receive some cash to put towards their debts. I’ve painfully watched a few shows, not because they were so good, but because it was so pathetic that I just couldn’t look away…In each show a middle class couple with decent jobs ended up racking up so much credit card debt that they had trouble paying the interest each month. The stupidity of this blows my mind. If people are using their credit card to buy food, shelter, emergency medical treatment etc... than that would be just sad…but if it’s being used to buy consumer items (wants instead of needs) than that’s just stupid. Although I don’t personally know anyone who’s gone bankrupt (except the person I bought my house from) I do know many people who are so incompetent at managing their money and debt levels that it’s borderline unbelievable. It’s usually not one or two large items that tip peoples debt levels from manageable to unmanageable, it’s usually multiple smaller ones that accumulate over the months, yet they all seem so shocked when they finally realize that they're over-extended. I can just imagine the thought process before raking up that much debt... “hmm...I can just make my minimum house payments, my credit card is almost maxed but I definitely need a flatscreen TV and hey maybe I’ll grab some takeout on the way home to celebrate...”

Don’t get me wrong I think debt is essential and often beneficial (keeps the economy going) but the uncontrolled consumerism that ruins families is just stupid...but hey maybe it’s just a new form Darwinism...I’ll call it Financial Darwinism...just filtering the weak from the moneypool…..

23 comments:

MillionDollarJourney.com said...

Good post MCM, definitely on side with you. I think the biggest problem is that people aren't financially educated when they get their first credit card.

FT

Monty Loree said...

Hello Again,

RE: Canadian Tour of Personal Finance blogs #2
I've scheduled the next tour on May 7, 2007.
The Money Diva has accepted to be the host for this event.

Check out http://www.canadian-money-advisor.ca for more details.

I've set up a new email for the tour
tour (dot) canadian (at) gmail (dot) com

BTW... did you see that Google's "Brand" is worth $66.4 Billion?
Google's "Brand" is worth $66.4 Billion?

Monty Loree
http://www.canadian-money-advisor.ca

Jordan said...

Great rant, I totally agree.

Further more, I think a lot credit card debt is caused by simple ignorance, which could be prevented with some basic education.

Why can't classes covering the basics of money management be taught to teens in high school?

Otherwise financially incompetent people will just keep passing on their poor habits and behaviors to their kids.

Middle Class Millionaire said...

I agree Jordan. I doesn't even have to be a whole semester course. A 2hr workshop would be enough to at least make kids aware of the issue. It would cost the school boards nothing as I assume there would be plenty of financial advisors who would volunteer to do a 2 hour workshop for the kids (as long as they could hand out their business cards at the end of it.)

Robert said...

Unfortunately this is something my wife and I are all too familiar with . The problem is once you start living on credit it gets very hard to break the cycle. The problem that we always had (thankfully now changing) is that when you are maxed out and something goes wrong you don't have an any savings to draw on so you end up using CCs to pay for everything and it becomes a vicious cycle.

The other big problem is when the banks started offering to convert mortgages into lines of credit, those little bastards rake in loads of profits for the banks and leave misery in its wake. My brother resisted getting one and an another family member didn't and after 10 years of heavy mortgage payments they maxed it out.

advantage said...

A Capitalist system + human nature = credit card debt

I agree with the high school comments though...

SavingsJourney said...

Hi MCM, I would have definitely considered myself a "caveman" last year according to your theory! In my case, I am an early 30's male in Toronto, married. My wife is in her mid 20's and has just started working 1 1/2 months ago (she just graduated from university). Until last year, we had 0 net worth - constantly - for years, and I did to before meeting her for the most part, because of my financial immaturity.

Anyway, we're starting to evolve, we've definitely thrown our clubs out into the garbage can - we're walking upright now!

I'm earning about 120K / Yr before extra consulting revenue that I normally do, and my wife's starting income right now is about 42K / Yr. I never received any financial lessons of any sort from my parents - my dad is almost 60, still rents a small apartment, is a factory worker, has about 0 saved except his defined benefit pensions from his factory job...I was following in a similar path but decided to reprioritize and goal set recently.

Considering our net worth today of $6,000 or so today though, we have a long way to go, but we're in it for the long haul! I'll keep my information posted on my blog, hopefully it helps to motivate other cavepeople to start improving their finances too!

SavingsJourney

Middle Class Millionaire said...

congratulations savingsjourney on your recent evolution! With your new found financial knowledge and great salary I'm sure you'll have a decent nestegg in no time.

Anonymous said...

They buy Twitter followers as Twitter is an effective marketing platform as much as it
is a social networking media. You would come across so many facebook admirers in your mundane
life who make a frequent use of facebook on a daily basis.
Therefore, many business owners purchase Twitter followers to boost their
online marketing campaign.

my blog post :: http://socialbears.com/Twitter-Followers/

Anonymous said...

Those that are not familiar with the area will treasure this
information above all else, and it will help them enjoy your wedding
more thoroughly. Meredith's mother suffered from Alzheimer's in prior seasons.
Out of town guests will feel especially welcome if you give
them special attention at the reception.

Also visit my homepage wedding website announcements

QUALITY STOCKS UNDER 5 DOLLARS said...

Avoid credit cards if at all possible.

Anonymous said...

Some were practical, of course, but others were psychological
and emotional. *Rounds table format. Theme Format: It is almost
like standard format of the pub quiz.

Here is my blog :: easy pub quiz and answers

Anonymous said...

Narrow blood vessels lie alongside the intestines of the earthworm and they
absorb the nutrients from the alimentary canal
feeding the rest of the body. * Team answer sheets - Basically a grid lined A4 type sheet with answer write in numbered boxes and a line on top for the team name.
The buccal cavity is a small cavity that has neither jaws nor teeth.


Have a look at my weblog: good pub quiz names

Anonymous said...

These make a kayak track very but hamper hard turns or tight
turns. Some fishermen just take a rod and a few lures
along and others like to bring lots of gear along.

Kayaks can also be classified as ocean kayaks, Hobie
kayaks, river kayaks, and tandem kayaks.

My homepage - Ashley Tisdale

Anonymous said...

(Thank you rounds are always welcome, of course.
You must definitely be planning to make it special and memorable by
keeping a good theme, ordering the best food
and choosing the best games. Theme Format: It is almost like standard format of the pub
quiz.

My blog :: pub quiz and answers

Anonymous said...

Also, we need to determine the rounds of the quiz according to it.
Brazenhead is a great place to go with your family or for a business lunch or dinner, but if you are looking for a party atmosphere, this
isn't it. They feature almost nightly drink specials and some form of entertainment every night of the week--DJ's, live music, trivia, you name it.


My webpage :: free pub quiz answers

Anonymous said...

Narrow blood vessels lie alongside the intestines of the earthworm and they absorb the
nutrients from the alimentary canal feeding the rest of the body.

You must definitely be planning to make it special and memorable by keeping a good theme, ordering
the best food and choosing the best games. Theme Format: It is almost like standard format of the pub quiz.


Also visit my site: pub quiz area

Anonymous said...

Narrow blood vessels lie alongside the intestines of the
earthworm and they absorb the nutrients from the alimentary canal feeding the rest of the
body. Popular prizes include sports tickets, cash and vouchers for
drinks, food - and dollars off of tabs. The buccal
cavity is a small cavity that has neither jaws nor teeth.


Check out my web blog: clever pub quiz names

Anonymous said...

I personally ԁiԁn't spend much time doing this, but I can see it's obvіouѕly wоrth іt.


Also ѵiѕіt my page ... small personal loans

Anonymous said...

The decor on the inside of the restaurant is
absolutely beautiful. * Team answer sheets - Basically a grid lined A4 type sheet with answer write in numbered boxes and a line on top for the team
name. They feature almost nightly drink specials and
some form of entertainment every night of the
week--DJ's, live music, trivia, you name it.

Also visit my webpage; pub quiz answers and questions **

Anonymous said...

Also, we need to determine the rounds of the quiz according to it.
Anna had been looking through my phone while I was naked.
Theme Format: It is almost like standard format of the pub quiz.



My weblog: pub quiz and answers general knowledge

Anonymous said...

The only hurdle to accessing this is of course human limitations and the
fact that the brain does not function solely as a learning tool for the human being.
Brazenhead is a great place to go with your family or for a business lunch
or dinner, but if you are looking for a party atmosphere, this isn't it. Ask your local club to run this for you.

Feel free to visit my homepage - pub quiz anagrams

Anonymous said...

DJ spins out on Saturday nights. Brazenhead is a great place to go with your
family or for a business lunch or dinner, but
if you are looking for a party atmosphere,
this isn't it. Her father, Bruce Paltrow, produced the critically acclaimed TV series that is considered the precursor to many medical shows today, St.

Here is my blog post - clever pub quiz names