Happy belated Thanksgiving – a holiday all about giving thanks for what we have, followed now by an orgy of attention on Black Friday to what we DON’T have. Lovely. I’d argue Black Friday is approaching Thanksgiving in popularity, and that’s not a good thing. I said about a year ago on Marketplace Money that I didn’t think this recession would change spending habits, and I think this holiday season will prove that out. Americans love their cars and credit cards as much as Germans love David Hasselhof. And why shouldn’t they (the Germans, I mean)?
What Simplicity And Minimalism Isn’t About… : Amen. I do like minimalism, but some of the posts on “ditch your fork and spoon, a spork is better” can be a bit much. The general idea is dead on, though: less stuff is almost always a good thing.
Six Painless Ways to Cut Your Grocery Bill: I read this and then was inspired to go out and find a Sunday paper, although apparently in a small town in Florida the big city (Jacksonville) Sunday edition is sold out by mid-afternoon.
Does the Obama Bull Market Have Years to Run? — Seeking Alpha. Now is not the time to get out – that time was when the “pro-business” former administration was in office. You should’ve gotten back in during 2009.: I don’t blame people for doing this, but first, consider a surprising fact. Despite the rantings and wailings from the Tea Party and Wall Street and so on, Obama has been the best president for the stock market in a half century:
The Best American Express Credit Cards For Your Business: I like Amex; I know they really hammer merchants with fees, but for a consumer there’s no card that offers better protection and service.
Generation Earn by Kimberly Palmer Reviewed: Lazy Man takes issues with screw-top wines (I’m a box man, myself), but other than that he gives a glowing review of Palmer’s book.
How we Paid off our Mortgage in 3 Years: A little bit of luck and a lot of smart budgeting, spending and earning. Kudos – I’m envious!
1099-K Form & Small Business Tax Reporting: If you have a small business, something to be aware of.
10 Inexpensive Christmas Gifts Under $10 and 10 Cheap Ways To Get A Great Gift For Under $5: Let’s take the horrific consumerism out of Christmas – some of the gifts my kids enjoy the most are the little dinky toys their grandfather gets them, rather than the “big ticket” items (which, incidentally, we are eliminating this year).
The End Of Free Checking: Hardly surprising, but disappointing nonetheless.
: A great list, although obviously there are advantages to working for someone else, like never having to worry about security (except when layoffs come), benefits (except when they are taken away) and perks (except there aren’t any anymore).
What Are Your Core Activities?: I think if you had 2-3 core activities – things you had to focus on, to the exclusion of other activities – you’d be successful. In the autobiography of Andrew Carnegie that I’m reading, he mentions several times that single-minded focus on a goal is the one great key to success. His beliefs, of course, were the basis for Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich (from whose book my 31 causes of failure series arises).