linklings, a brief lack of excess stuff edition

One of the best things about moving is that it thins out your possessions. Our neighbors had a yard sale and asked if we needed to sell anything. After moving, not really! Almost everything we didn’t need any longer already went to charity, friends, family, was sold or (unfortunately) was thrown out. We’ve found that even after shedding all those things we still have more than enough stuff. Toys, particularly.

Is the 401(k) Broken? I’m Not So Sure: The 401(k) is not really broken, in and of itself – it’s simply the whole system that’s struggling. The move from defined benefit to defined contribution savings was good for employers but a disaster for employees.

SEP IRA: Self-Employed Retirement Plans: And on the same topic, SEP IRAs – something I know very little about but should probably study, since I’d be eligible for one now.

What’s Your Excuse?: Amusing, but oh too familiar…

Retired at 31: An Early Retirement Story: Always interesting to read about other people’s paths to retirement.

The Path To Contentment: I had similar feelings about flying after 9/11. Not fear, per se, but the experience went from tedious to downright tortuous. I lost any enjoyment for business travel I had after 9/11.

Did TurboTax Mis-calculate My Recovery Rebate Credit?: Disturbing question about TurboTax. Those of us who use it count on it to calculate numbers correctly.

Who Should Know How Much a Pastor Makes?: I would imagine if I donated money to a pastor’s salary I’d like to get that information if I asked for it, but I don’t think it would need to be a matter of public record.

How To Be A Millionaire? Start Thinking Like One!: I’ve written about this many times, and I would like to think I have this mindset, but honestly I’d rather go for a bike ride or watch the waves crash on the beach than hammer away at making millions.  I just haven’t found my perfect work yet.

New Cash Back Program from Bing: I spent 5 minutes on Bing – I don’t have much patience for “the latest innovation from Microsoft”, which hasn’t really innovated since they stole the concept for Windows from Apple – but offering cash back on search might be the only way to beat Google. Might.

Teaching An Old Dog New Tricks: I have to agree with Hunter. I don’t care much for Facebook. I have never visited MySpace except once to register “brip blap” so nobody would swipe it. I would guess that 99% of my “social networking” has taken place on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Do you belong in NYC? Take the test: I loved NYC, but to me that means Manhattan. Once I was living in the burbs and working in NYC, I switched pretty quickly from loving it to hating it. Ask me again in two or three years, but so far moving to a warmer, less expensive, less crowded area on the ocean has been a fantastic upgrade.

but on the other hand, How I Save $8,535 Per Year By Not Having A Car: One of the things I love about the NYC area is public transportation. Being able to avoid car ownership was one of my favorite things about life in Moscow and New York. Cars are – to me, at least – headaches waiting to happen.

On Spending Consciously: That’s a great way to phrase it: spending consciously. I feel that I’ve mastered this to a certain level, but once in a while I do wake up and think “wait a minute – did I just buy THAT?”

Everything You Want To Know About Universal Health Care: From my perspective, a simple solution exists – expand Medicare to anyone who wants in (on a means-tested premium rate), but allow anyone who wants private health care to keep it.