I’m not a big fan of conspiracy theories, nor do I think for one second that Goldman Sachs is the lone culprit for the numerous financial crises we have endured but I can’t for the life of me figure out why I haven’t heard more about this story in the past few weeks.

Here is a link to the orignial story,  Inside The Great American Bubble MachineMatt Taibbi on how Goldman Sachs has engineered every major market manipulation since the Great Depression.

Matt was also this week’s guest on The Disciplined Investor Podcast where he discussed that he used Goldman as just a metaphor for the big investment banks but, at the same time, Goldman Sachs was the biggest investment bank that did profit the most…so not really a metaphor.

I just find it interesting that with Goldman Sachs in the news so much lately for their record profits, obscene bonuses and stolen codes that this story doesn’t seem to get mentioned. We are all so ready to believe whatever the mainstream media tells us about the predatory lending practices of greedy mortgage brokers or the evil Bush administration and their corporate buddies, but when an alternate news source points out that both sides of the political aisle are in bed with  a very powerful entity that has in fact been a part of, and profited tremendously, from the several economic crises that have hit the rest of us, We are so eager to wave it off as nonsense or mere conspiracy theory.

Personally, I don’t think we want to know the truth about how the system works. I think we want to believe in the good guy that we can trust. We need to believe that it’s the other guy’s fault and that the government is there to protect us. I think we just want someone to make us believe that everything is going to be OK and that very shortly we can get back to our normal lives. But what do I know, I’m just a moron.

Back to Basics

April 8, 2009

So far I’ve made it through the first 3 chapters of Your Money or Your Life and it felt like those classic scenes in All in the Family when Edith was rambling on and on and Archie would be pretending to kill himself while Edith just kept on talking.  Despite the often overwhelming liberal ramblings in the book, I am going to go through the tasks outlined to caculate my “Life Energy” and then finish the book. However, I also needed a mental break from the book so I decided to dumb it down a bit and read The Richest Man in Babylon and The Wealthy Barber in an attempt to clear my head and get back basics.

Between setting up a budget with You Need A Budget, stressing over debt and listening to Dave Ramsey tell me to get “Gazelle Intense” about only debt reduction, listening to Rob Black and Ric Edelman tell me to never pay off a 30-year low fixed-rate mortgage and instead invest in the market, and all the craziness going on with the economy and the market right now…I feel like my head is going to explode!!!

So for now, I am going to the basic 10% Savings off the top, 20% to Debt, and 70% for Expenses and will consider how to incorporate the myriad of advice/opinions into a plan that works for me.  My priorities still remain paying off our credit card debt and building up our emergency fund but I am not willing to stop contributing to retirement and education savings nor can I focus on just one aspect of my finances at a time while ignoring the others. There are so many important and complicated pieces to the personal finance puzzle, but sometimes the simplest and most basic plan is the best strategy for those times when it all seems to get to be too much.

I’m Baaaaaaaaaack!

December 20, 2008

Hello Again. I know that I’m talking to myself right now, but I’ve decided to return to blogging and I’ve moved from blogspot to wordpress.

Why have I returned you ask? Well, simply put I was making much better progress with my financial goals when blogging about them. Since I deleted my blogspot blog earlier this year, I have done a complete 180 from paying off my credit card debt and working towards building my savings to finishing out the year with a credit card balance well over $30,000 and a paltry savings account that has been dwindling in the past few months as my monthly expenses have steadily gotten out of control.

Time to get back on track and I hope to follow my progress here.