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T2K

Eye Opener

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I don't watch the News very much, local or cable, but it is hard to miss what's reportedly going on during the 'Government Shutdown'. No, not talking about politics, not talking about the reason for the 'Shutdown' itself, I'm talking about the apparent poor financial condition of your average working family, which in this case is being demonstrated primarily by government employees although the effect of the shutdown affects others too.

 

Since a few weeks into the shutdown we have heard about food pantries, missed medical procedures, bankruptcy, opening Go-Fund-Me accounts and horror story after horror story, after missing just one paycheck. WTF is that? Are working folks in this country really in as bad financial shape as is being reported? Why is that? I read that he average government employee earns an average of $79,000 a year. Of course most probably earn much less.

 

Do people not prepare themselves for the bumps in the road of life nowadays or are people just living beyond their means. It's flabbergasting to me. I mean, why don't we see more vehicles on the side of the road out of gas because of this type of poor planning? I did read that 80% of working folks here live paycheck to paycheck. But still, after 2 weeks of missed pay. I just don't get it.

 

I don't really consort with younger folks since I'm an old retired codger. But is this really the state of most working people in this country, in your opinion/experience?

 

Keith

 

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I wondered the same thing, why are families going to a food bank after missing one week's pay. We're only seeing what the media thinks we need to see. The guy that saves part of his paycheck to provide for his family in time of need isn't very newsworthy. Sensationalism.....pays the bills.

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I grew up with Mom, Dad, and six other siblings.

Pops worked for NNG as a welder, when he retired at 55 had topped out at around $21, $22, thousand a year.

Moms stayed home and raised seven kids, can you imagine doing this??

Both worked there asses off raising 7 kids.

Both saved for their retirement and the amount astonished all of us kids...."That are still alive"

I will not ever have what Mom and Pops burned through after moving into assisted living.

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Some of this is coming from Google, so take it how you want.  Say a TSA agent makes 38k a year.  After all taxes, they may have 22-26k leftover.  Say your single person, after rent (which $900 would be good around here), your with about $1200 left over a month for anything else (food, gas, insurance, any utilities, etc.).  Not bad for a single person, but what about single parent? throw day care in there and forget about any funds left over, your off to the food bank.  Kind of hard to save and prepare.

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^^^^ what about single parent? I did this....Living proof guys can be single parents, and damn good ones at that.

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The average family of four household income varies by regions in the US, 45 k-75 k ( as of 2016). 

 

Accounting for taxes, and after all monthly expenditures, they have only their retirement, hopefully funding it monthly, to fall back on, and hardly anything left in terms of savings. so yes, sadly,  paycheck to paycheck applies to a majority of households in this country.

 

Sad but true.

 

Life has become more expensive over the decades, mainly b/c of new technologies we can not live w/o ( or so we think). Very few people are financially responsible enough to save, beyond their monthly retirement pre tax retirement accounts saving.

 

The mentality has changed, more slogans like "YOLO"  make people " live the moment", and don't think of saving their pennies for a rainy day.

 

Hope this situation, as sad as it is, will impact people's financial future behavior and planning.

 

Thoughts and prayers to those workers  affected by this crisis. 

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All these people have to do is skip one Starbucks coffee, or one burger a day and they would have enough money to support themselves. I give a lot to charity, but have to draw the line somewhere. Not going to support a government employee that makes good money and has more benefits (and vacation) than most of us who were in private business. Hope they learn to plan for emergencies from this experience.

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9 minutes ago, MyOwn said:

^^^^ what about single parent? I did the this....Living proof guys can be single parents, and damn good ones at that.

Never said single parents have to be men or women, never said folks can't be good at be single parents.  But what was your living situation, income, daycare?  What age did you start? How prepared were you?  Yes Ideally everyone may want to consider being prepared before they have kids, crap happens.   You stated your mom stayed home and raised kids, sounds like she relied on your dad to handle income.  What if he passed with no life insurance and left her with nothing, including life skills?  Things could have been a lot worse. 

 

For the record, I am not asking you or anyone to shed tears for anyone, just giving examples how things don't always work out for folks.  I ruffed it the first 10 years of my adult life outside of the home.  I managed during a recession and was even able to purchase a home during it.  But one little trip and things could have went south very quickly.

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3 minutes ago, pallpoul said:

mainly b/c of new technologies we can not live w/o ( or so we think)

 

absolutely yes...

Might I ad.... or so we are made to believe we cant live without...

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1 hour ago, T2K said:

But is this really the state of most working people in this country, in your opinion/experience?

Yes.

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3 minutes ago, The Dude said:

How prepared were you? 

 

Not prepared at all...

I wasn't insinuating male or female "If it came across as such I apologize"

I was 21, she was 18, when we married. My Son was on the way.

I joined the service in 83 "to the disappointment of my new wife.

In 89 I left the service as a single parent of two awesome kids.

I used to climb in the military, My job was to install communication equipment, above and below ground...

While in the service computers became a hobby...It's amazing what one can learn when its interesting.

 

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3 minutes ago, The Dude said:
10 minutes ago, MyOwn said:

^^^^ what about single parent? I did the this....Living proof guys can be single parents, and damn good ones at that.

Never said single parents have to be men or women, never said folks can't be good at be single parents.  But what was your living situation, income, daycare? 

I was a single parent too. Living situation: we were living check to check when she left me and our three children.

 

5 minutes ago, The Dude said:

What age did you start?

I was 27, my son had just turned 4 and my twin daughters were 2...and 2 lol.

 

6 minutes ago, The Dude said:

How prepared were you? 

We were not. Rented a house, had a mini van and a 2 door car (280ZX Turbo, had to have it). Both were paid for because I wasn't living beyond what I could stand.

 

7 minutes ago, The Dude said:

Yes Ideally everyone may want to consider being prepared before they have kids, crap happens.  

Telling us to be prepared would have been a waste of time. We were married and did what animals do. 

 

 

I was one broke puppy for a few years. Kids are expensive and so was the ex...who took the washer and dryer when she left. It took a while, but I did without and provided for them. Saved enough to put myself into college and still provide for 3 others who ate more and needed larger cloths after a while. Other than my dad buying me a washer and dryer, that I still use, not one time did I apply for or receive any assistance. That was in 1993, the last two graduated and got out in 2010. They are doing great and none are needing any assistance.... And I can now afford Klipsch Belle. 

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=== I read basically the same number T2K gave - 78% of working folks are pay day to pay day. It’s both hard to imagine and quite sad and eye opening at the same time. It’s a damn big country with so many towns most know nothing about. In my county I see more more BMW and MB than a Honda and Toyota. An exaggeration, yes, but you get my point. Not a home is built around here that goes for less than $350-$400K. A good friend of mine builds homes and tells me the story of a couple closing on a $400K home who had added a few extras at the last days of the build and needed an additional $4000 at closing. They didn’t have it in the bank. People buying a $400K house with nothing, zero to fall back on. And there lies the problem — and the younger generations uphold the credo — keeping up with the Jones’.

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2 minutes ago, MyOwn said:

In 89 I left the service as a single parent of two awesome kids.

I used to climb in the military, My job was to install communication equipment, above and below ground...

While in the service computers became a hobby...It's amazing what one can learn when its interesting.

Who watched your kids while you worked? Just trying to understand.

3 minutes ago, MyOwn said:

I wasn't insinuating male or female "If it came across as such I apologize"

No need to apologize, just verifying that it can be anyone.

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1 hour ago, T2K said:

Do people not prepare themselves for the bumps in the road of life nowadays or are people just living beyond their means. It's flabbergasting to me.

I SMH too. It's been going on for some time that people get upside down with their car payments. To owe $35,000 on a car valued at $15,000, that would hurt. 

 

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4 minutes ago, Woofers and Tweeters said:

I was a single parent too. Living situation: we were living check to check when she left me and our three children.

 

I was 27, my son had just turned 4 and my twin daughters were 2...and 2 lol.

 

We were not. Rented a house, had a mini van and a 2 door car (280ZX Turbo, had to have it). Both were paid for because I wasn't living beyond what I could stand.

 

Telling us to be prepared would have been a waste of time. We were married and did what animals do. 

 

 

I was one broke puppy for a few years. Kids are expensive and so was the ex...who took the washer and dryer when she left. It took a while, but I did without and provided for them. Saved enough to put myself into college and still provide for 3 others who ate more and needed larger cloths after a while. Other than my dad buying me a washer and dryer, that I still use, not one time did I apply for or receive any assistance. That was in 1993, the last two graduated and got out in 2010. They are doing great and none are needing any assistance.... And I can now afford Klipsch Belle. 

And what would have happened if you showed up to work and were told you weren't getting paid?

 

For the record, I am not a single parent.  I moved out with my girlfriend (wife now) at 18, making $7.25 an hour, bought my first house at 19, fell victim to the sub prime rates (it was clearly my lack of knowledge and understanding how things work, my fault, you learn from your mistakes and move on),  had my first at 21 and second at 24, I fought through it, rented rooms, sold the house and wrote a $15k check to the bank to keep my credit good.  Saved for a hefty down payment while living with my folks. If anything would have happened during that time, I would have been up creek.  But we were fortunate.   My wife has a huge student loan, mine was paid for by my company, we can afford hers, 401ks and are able to save.  Two different times in life,  one could have been a nightmare, the other not so much. 

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26 minutes ago, The Dude said:

Who watched your kids while you worked? Just trying to understand

 

While in the service, it was on base daycare which was out of pocket. Not free.

After service it was a combination of day care, family and most importantly, the kids started elementary school which is an awesome sitter

 

Edit to add..My family helped alot,

 

Big thank you to my family...Mom, Pops and six other siblings ❤️❤️

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1 hour ago, The Dude said:

And what would have happened if you showed up to work and were told you weren't getting paid?

I would have to cut off the cable / dish service and dropped back on my phone plan to calls only and I would have to look for sales and cut coupons, picked up a part time side job and sold a few things that I didn't want to..... Would you like to buy some speakers? 

 

I left the working world from 06 until 2010 while I went to school and raised kids, yes I had that much saved. I know how to save money: don't spend it lol. 

 

I do feel for people who aren't prepared. As Keith was pointing out: Bankruptcy? Who can be in such sad shape so quickly?  Self inflicted and needs to learn so they don't do that again, IMHO. 

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11 minutes ago, Woofers and Tweeters said:

Would you like to buy some speakers

Your Belles?  Absolutely. 

 

 

 

 

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