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credit cards

Close – But No Cigar: New Credit Card Legislation Does Not Go Nearly Far Enough

Aunt Toby has written before about credit cards, their use, abuse, and the almost preternatural ability of people to create large weights of debt with which they can NOT continue to conduct their financial lives. Atkins for Plastic Thank Shopping

One thing I have not written about is how I feel about credit card companies targeting people who not only are not in a position either psychologically or financially to take on debt, but the effects of people such as these groups who end up with huge amounts of debt at times in their lives when they can least afford to have it.

These people are college students. (more…)

Just One Thing: Atkins for Plastic


Take out all your credit cards. Even the ones you don’t use but once a year. How many do you have? Oh, you want Aunt Toby to show hers first?

I’ve got…12. That is just moi. We are NOT an average American family, which in 2004 had 8.

Frontline Credit Show

This show gives a great overview of how Americans came to live on a diet of plastic (did you know that South Dakota, the price of shipping corn, and banks on Long Island are the magic combination?).

But that show was in 2004 (thought there are updates on the site). For more current statistics on credit card related stuff, go to:
Cardtrak statistics
(more…)

If You’re in a Financial Mess, You Might Thank Shopping For It

shopping There are a whole lot of blogs out there. One researcher estimates that there are 175 million of them. I read a bunch of them. What I really look for is someone who says something that really makes me think. I read a blog recently that was a “lightbulb moment” for me.

The young lady whose blog I was reading, a couple of months ago faced a financial crisis – she and her husband have one of those “modern relationship arrangements” – she pays hers; he pays his; they pay the household stuff together. So, when her credit card balance got to be the size of AIG’s bailout, she had to do some negotiating with her DH in terms of how to pay that sucker down because she couldn’t afford the minimum payment any more.

Now, this is all well and good. Her DH was kind, nice and nurturing – he took the credit card away and told her to come up with a plan. He even recognized that she could not go “cold turkey” and she came up with this: She would get $10 a week to spend however she wanted to. This did not include costs like lunches, car fare (what a homey, old fashioned term that is) and so on. This was her “play money” and she could spend it however she wanted to.

Ten dollars. $10.00. This, for a woman whose purchases had produced a credit card balance that required her to make a fairly humiliating appeal to her husband for her own personal bailout. (more…)

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