Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
For Independent Minded People!
In This Issue:
- 1. DIY Home spending audit
- 2. 12 debt myths to trip you up
- 3. 10 Ways to stop unessential spending, Sneaky ways to hide food inflation
- 4. Best method of composting for your lifestyle
- 5. What will the economic collapse look like?
Money is something you exchange a portion of your life for.
– Joe Dominguez
Should you perform a Spending Audit for your household?
Why You’re Broke: You Don’t Audit Your Spending Habits
Many readers have shared their frugal living success stories with the Poor Man. Feel free to share your stories too.
A reader named Jeannie saved $50 a month off her cable bill by threatening to switch providers. (I recently tried that with our carrier but it failed to persuade them).
A reader named Cheryl shared how she reduced her monthly spending by $110 without making any big changes in how she lives her life…
“Two months ago I did this audit. I saved $30 by combining my cell phone service with my partners “Verizon family share plan”.
I saved $50 by dumping Comcast and going with Directv. I saved $20 by
dropping my TiVo subscription because I actually like DirecTV’s DVR service just as much. I saved about $10 by reducing my “2 disc at a time, unlimited monthly delivery” Netflix subscription to “2 discs per month, delivered one at a time”. That’s $110 savings per month! And guess what, that one disc has been sitting next to my DVD player for a month. I guess I’ll now be reducing my plan to streaming only.”
The biggest reason most people always find themselves broke and continually in debt is because they are ignorant regarding where their money is going.
In order to start down the road to financial freedom, the first task of the household CEO is to figure out exactly where all of the household money is going. This task is important because a detailed audit must be performed if you ever hope to truly understand your household’s monthly spending habits.
To start your audit, you will need to have an accurate accounting of all of your income as well as every penny you spent over the previous month.
Many people are initially attracted to sites like Mint, OneBudget, Adaptu, and MyBudget-Online because their automation features essentially make the job of tracking your money almost effortless. The trouble is, in the world of personal finance I believe too much automation can be a curse. That’s because when money management tools become too user-friendly, a lot of folks have very little incentive to understand the data being made available to them. A simple program like Excel can be set up to accomplish the same thing.
Learn more at:
10 ways to stop non-essential spending
read more here
PM’s Compendium of Useful Resources
12 Debt Myths That Can Trip You Up
When you get married, do you assume responsibility for the debts of your partner? Most people think they do, but in most cases, you have no legal responsibility for their prior debts. Here are nine more debt myths to purge from your consciousness.
The EPA estimates that 27% of our waste stream is organic material that can be composted. Despite this huge amount of waste, for many of us the prospect of composting seems overwhelming – or even impractical.
Even if you don’t have a yard, there are ways you can compost and cut your trash significantly. Stop sending useful materials and nutrients to the landfill and find the right system for you.
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Sneaky Ways to Hide Food Inflation
|To keep consumers complacent, food manufacturers are taking to underhanded means to make you feel like you’re not paying more.
Their main strategy is to shrink packages while keeping the price the same. Just take a look at these examples:
The examples go on and on. You may feel like you’re buying the same amount of food for the same amount of money, but brand after brand is giving you a smaller size and hoping you won’t notice.
The trend of food inflation outpacing the core inflation rate and wage increases isn’t going to end soon. The time to take action is now. The best thing you can do is invest in foodstuffs with a long shelf life. I recommend at least a 30-day supply for your household, but a three-to-six month supply is really ideal.
The Nanny State Updates… Americans are fat n happy while their rights are trampled!
Local law enforcement agencies around the country are finding it hard to buy ammo these days. The shortage is in part due to gun owners stocking up on bullets due to concerns about new gun laws at the federal and state levels. DHS plan o buy 1.6 billion bullets only adds to the ammo shortage.
Some twenty-eight nations have some type of weapons of mass destruction capability, with some of them having nuclear weapons or nuclear-weapons capability. The nuclear materials in many of these countries are kept in hundreds of sites without global safeguards in place for securing them. A senior American military official described these loose nukes as the “single biggest existential threat to Western survival.” Yet, in a recent exercise, the U.S. response time for deploying 90,000 troops to a crisis area – an area which included loose nukes, other WMDs, or both — took fifty-five days. U.S. military leaders say this is just not good enough.
A new report highlights issues surrounding global food systems and the importation of food into the United Kingdom. One contributor to the study says: “Global food security, and ensuring food is socially, economically and environmentally sustainable, is perhaps the most important societal issue we face. Disruptions to food supply has serious knock-on effects; economically, socially and to the health and well-being of the population.”
Department of Homeland inSecurity – One more reason why the USA is broke and losing its freedom-militarizing the police and helping to disrupt the economy since 2001.
DHS is a massive umbrella agency, with over 100,000 armed law enforcement personnel, sucking enormous amounts of taxpayer dollars and represents more than $8 billion of our annual budget. The USA has more armed agents than any other country in the world, according to a DHS spokesperson.
The Parting Thought- Much gnashing of teeth
What Will Economic Collapse Look Like?
The Beginning of the End…
Although they won’t admit it, the Fed backed itself into a corner with its reckless easy-money policy and Obama seems to have little background in economics as he continues along the path of financial destruction.
While I don’t expect a Zombie Apocalypse resulting from a crash, temporary supply disruptions caused by market uncertainties will be inevitable — and that will lead to empty supermarket shelves, fuel shortages and, possibly, utility failures that will almost certainly result in civil unrest and increased crime in more densely populated areas.
The good news is a new (hopefully gold-backed) currency will be issued and society will slowly recover. I’m hoping it will take no more than six months before the supply chain recovers enough to eliminate most shortages.
Thankfully, tangible assets won’t go up in smoke after the economy resets; your home, automobile, and other possessions should be unaffected.
More good news: Any long-term debt you hold in old US dollars will essentially be wiped out because you should be able to retire it with worthless currency. At least that’s the government hopes to do with its debt. Most likely, public program such as Medicare, Social Security, pensions, etc. will take a hit or be severely reduced.
Even so, things will never be the same for most people.
Although it’s anybody’s guess, I believe Americans will be lucky if their post-collapse standard-of-living will be equivalent to half of what it is now; worst case, one-third. That ain’t so bad if you earn $1 million per year but, if my assumption is correct, and you earn $60,000 annually, then your post-collapse standard-of-living will be between $20,000 and $30,000 today.
When it comes to ensuring the survival of your family in rough economic times, many are ill prepared.
More resources at: http://www.poormansurvival.com/Pages/guestcolumn.aspx
“Until the next revolution”, the Poor Man
Join others striving for Financial Independence in the Poor Man Survival community on how to take back control of your money. Updated for 2013 and now includes a Will Kit.
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