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Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!): The Beginning of the End?

Life Lessons of a Military Wife (overseas in Europe!)

My goal here is to make your life easier, especially those who are in the unique situation of being a military spouse. Yes...I've been around...but in a good way...and hopefully can share those tips, tricks and shortcuts with you too. I've been on this military bus for over 40 years now. My goals in life are to have a well-run home, few money worries, well adjusted children, money socked away and whatever happiness I can scoop out of life.

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After life as an Army brat, being in the Army myself and marrying a soldier, I can honestly say I have a bucket full of life lessons I can share to help you make your everyday life easier and enlightening. Don't waste your time making unnecessary mistakes and benefit from others who have come before you on your journey through life.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Beginning of the End?

My grandfather always used to drill into me the importance of living within your means and not being a slave to debt from anyone. For the most part, I have followed his advice. I did have a car loan once and of course we did buy a few houses on credit. Now, I can see our retirement accounts shrinking, and we can't seem to sell or rent one of our houses right now....so I do feel a bit poorer than I felt yesterday. But, what is going to happen in our current economy? We have a society that is built on credit, and lots of it....our government can't even seem to function without tons of credit, and therefore debt. We have many Americans who bought stuff and houses that they couldn't afford, not to mention fatcats that overextended their positions and now can't keep up either. It makes me wonder....is our American free market society going the way of the Roman Empire? Is this the beginning of the end?

What are your thoughts on this? I've listened to some of the pundits and talking heads and have talked to friends and neighbors...and more than anything...I hear anger and disgust.....lots of finger pointing...never back at themselves though...but didn't we ALL contribute to this, one way or another?

Another point. With all these supposed smart economists and people out there, are you tellling me that not a single one saw any of this coming? I'm wondering what will happen when the economy gets this infusion of money, aka the bail out. It is supposed to stimulate our economy and get credit markets moving again..and banks lending to each other again. Those with money will supposedly pour tons into the economy to get it moving. But, as a country, we will be many trillions of dollars in debt, won't we? So how will we continue from there? Will there need to be more infusions? Will we move away from a free market society and be run more along the lines of a Big Brother society? Or will we continue to go along, run out of money again, where the government will have to print worthless money, to the point of us rolling wheelbarrow loads of money around to go buy a loaf of bread. We wouldn't be the first country to do this. Remember Germany in the 1930s? That could be us too.

Last point. Here we are struggling as a nation and as a economy...and the Chinese continue to silently...for the most part....plug along. I truly think they will replace us as the next superpower while we are fiddling around here. As I said, the Roman Empire didn't last forever, so what makes us think we can? Just wondering...

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5 Comments:

Blogger Mila said...

great post.

October 7, 2008 at 5:50 PM  
Blogger Tava said...

I have a trillion and one thoughts on this but I was most recently confused/outraged etc... when I saw an ad on television stating something like this, "Did your financial advisor get you to invest in blah blah blah and now your portfolio has bottomed out?" "Do you know that you have legal recouse against your advisor?"

I'm like WTF??? Seriously people. As long as they are peforming the way you want them to, you are happy, but now that the economy has been flushed and the bottom is falling out of things our society allows you to SUE that advisor for the poor performance of your stocks. There is something horribly wrong with this picture. This litiguous society we live in has to be stopped. We live in a society where we are encouraged NOT to take responsibility for our own actions. Everything is someone elses' fault.

Geesh, R , I guess it's your fault I'm having diarrhea of the fingertips here and not doing my laundry! Thanks! :-)

October 7, 2008 at 8:13 PM  
Blogger ****Veteran Military Wife at Life Lessons of a Military Wife**** said...

OMG....I guess the lawyers are losing money now too...you knew they were going to come up with something, didn't you? I just didn't think it would be so fast!

For the average person like me, I was finally able to even understand what happened by listening to

podcast.thisamericanlife.org/podcast/365.mp3

Have a listen...

October 7, 2008 at 10:35 PM  
Blogger dyceedo said...

oh, I have lots to say about this! Good post!
We first knew that things were not looking good for the U.S. economy while living in Germany and watching the dollar die. Meanwhile, we still had conversations with friends that were Stateside who made statements like, "Wow. You live in Germany? Isn't it really cheap to buy stuff over there?". They had no clue that our dollar was becoming laughable around the globe.
Secondly, I'll give two scenarios of families that we are friends with and their current financial status. One family lives Stateside and has a home full of brand new furniture. Shortly after purchasing all this furniture, they decided they had overextended themselves and filed chapter 11. So, essentially you and I are now paying for their house full of new furniture. The other family is a Swiss/American couple, living in Switzerland. They overextended themselves in building their million dollar home. They don't have the option to file chapter 11 in Switzerland. Instead, the State decides what they will take out of your accounts to pay off your debt, and they just take it every month. This couple is now working like crazy in several jobs just to make ends meet, but they are doing it. My guess is that they will never make a financial mistake like this again. Lesson learned.
So, that's my two-cents on the whole bail-out, failing economy thing. I hate to see our nation fall into financial despair, but maybe we need to hit rock bottom to get things back in order again.

October 9, 2008 at 3:13 AM  
Blogger Penelope said...

In 2004 my husband and I bought a modest house in metro Atlanta. We have always lived within our means, and we did not feel like getting one of those jumbo mortgages. We were happy with our house... but now and then some people made comments like "What? Your husband is a Lt. Col. and you live in such a little house?" I tried to ignore those people, but I have to admit, at times it was not fun to hear. I always wondered how my husband's colleagues could afford all that wealth: huge houses with beautiful furniture, brandnew cars, etc. But now I understand: equity lines, credit cards, etc. I know that some of those people are in financial trouble right now. I am glad we made smarter choices.

October 15, 2008 at 8:38 PM  

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