Monthly Archives: December 2010

The Importance Of Teaching Your Children Money Management Skills


We all agree that the year 2010 was one of the most difficult in terms of financial hardships, and we can’t wait for the year to be over. But as we usher in a new year, lets not repeat the same mistakes we made in the year 2010 in 2011. Although most experts agree that another financial catastrophe will definitely happen again sometime in the future, because apparently human beings have a very short memory span, and they never seem to learn from their mistakes, that doesn’t mean you are going to sit down, do nothing and hope for the best. I know as a parent, the last thing you want your kids to go through is what is happening in your financial affairs right now. The best way to protect kids from ever repeating the same financial mistakes we’re going through, is by educating them on the benefits of financial management skills, as is explained in the following article by Richard MacGrueber.

If you have ever struggled with your own money management issues, you probably know how difficult it can be to deal with personal finance issues. If you have made it to the light at the end of the tunnel, and have been able to overcome financial problems, you also know how much easier it is to get through your day-to-day life without worrying about money. If you do not want your children to deal with same financial burdens you have struggled with, it is wise to teach them the importance of good money management skills.

Just as you teach your children other good habits, such as brushing their teeth and cleaning up after themselves, you can also teach them good money management habits. The most important is teaching your children the value of saving money, and not spending their savings on an impulse.

Give your children the opportunity to save money by rewarding them with an allowance or monetary value for completing tasks outside the realm of their regular responsibilities. To teach children the connection between spending and saving, do not try to dictate how they handle their money. Allow them to spend or save at their discretion. If you know your child wants to purchase a new video game, but he or she wants to spend their money on a bucket full of candy, you can remind your child that if the money is spent it will take longer to reach their goal of getting the video game. Teach them, but don’t tell them what to do.

Practice What You Preach

Although you may have the best intentions when it comes to teaching your children good money management skills, they will not reap the benefits of your efforts unless you are also managing your own money wisely. If your children see you constantly purchasing unnecessary items or overspending, when you tell them how important it is to save their money – the advice will fall on deaf ears. The old saying “do as I say, not as I do” will not work when it comes to teaching children the value of good money management skills. If, on the other hand, your children see you working hard to save money and successfully reaching financial goals, they will be more inclined to follow in your footsteps.

Family Savings Goals

You can even set family savings goals together for fun. If you set a savings goal of a certain amount to reach in a set timeframe to take a family vacation, work with your child to save for a goal within the same timeframe. Your child can set a goal and save so that he or she will have spending money of their own while on the vacation, or for some other item to be used on the vacation. Whatever the family goal is, working together towards a financial goal can be fun and rewarding, and can bring the family together.

How To Avoid Over-spending


This is a big one, and it probably the one factor that contributed the most to the financial crisis we are going through. A lot of people find it hard to resist it, and sometimes you can’t blame them. This factor is overspending. I think you’ll all agree with me when I say that giving  a person who delivers pizzas (with all due respect) a mortgage of $ 500,000.00, was not only a lack of financial discipline, but also negligence on the part of both the lender and borrower. Therefore, as we are about to close the new year, the one destructive habit will have to tame the coming year is overspending, and there are a number of ways one can about controlling your overspending as explained by Dane Smith in the following article.

Sticking to a budget can be extremely difficult particularly if your finances are tight and you aren’t inclined to be particularly organized or disciplined. Never fear, even those of us who aren’t prone to budgeting can do it successfully, so long as we know how to stay on track. True, that’s easier said than done, but there are plenty of tips and tricks you can use to help keep curb excess spending, and keep your budget intact.

Limit Your Resources

Oftentimes, people spend money on spur of the moment purchases, that they really should be saving (and likely even have ear-marked) for something else. Credit card bills, savings accounts and other payments that aren’t necessarily imperative (or that people believe can slide) often fall victim to this kind of spending. The easiest way to avoid this bad habit is to portion out your money every time you get a pay check. Put your bill money (including credit card payments!), grocery money, and funds for other necessities in the bank. Whatever you have left over that can be considered spending money, take out in cash. This way, once the money you’ve budgeted for miscellaneous spending has been used up, it’s gone. Plus, having the funds in cash can often help you monitor your spending better people often go overboard when buying things with a debit or credit card because they don’t see the account balance shrinking in front of them.

Make Shopping a Marathon

Next time you head out on a shopping trip, plan to run all your errands at once. If you have a list of places to go and things to accomplish, you’ll be less likely to spend extra time shopping or browsing for items other than those on your list. Additionally, if you’re spending quite a bit of money in one day as a result of consolidating your errands, you’ll probably be less inclined to spend more money frivolously. Plus, running all of your errands at once saves gasoline, and can help trim that ever-increasing, always-pricey area of your budget.

Make a List, Check it Twice

Anytime you head to the store, take a list with you. And if you’re going on a major shopping outing for your weekly groceries, or something bigger like back to school sit down with your list before you leave the house and go back over everything, eliminating anything you don’t actually need. Keeping a list will not only help you stay on track, it will likely make your entire outing more efficient, and more effective. Plus, having an accurate list will help you avoid forgetting something important and having to make an extra, unnecessary trip.

Avoid Emotional Shopping

Everyone knows the adage, “Never go to the grocery store hungry.” The same applies for any other kind of shopping. Many people over-spend because they find shopping therapeutic it eases stress or relieves depression and often buy things they don’t even really want, just for the feeling they get as a result. Just don’t do it; shopping is not a hobby.

Over-spending is easy to do, and sometimes it can be entirely justified, but those times are rare. Follow these simple tips to keep yourself on track, and foster financial security something that never goes out of style.

Why 401(k) Retirement Plans Really Don’t Work


As we continue to plan for the future, one area that is not given much attention is retirement, and this is because majority of those in business and employees think that by investing in the 401(k) and the employer’s retirement pension plan, they are adequately covered for their sunset years. Any contributions you make to your retirement plan is tax-free, but what they often forget to tell us is that the income you’ll collect once you have retired is often taxed at high tax rate. What I don’t understand is, I thought the whole idea of tax-free contributions is to encourage people to invest in their retirement in the first place, so that they can have enough funds to sustain their current living standards during retirement? This tax deduction are done even before you have analyzed volatility of the stock market, which probably has wiped out all you earnings, as it happened when the financial meltdown started. That is why I keep on saying that, just because you are contributing to the social security and the employer’s retirement pension plan, does not mean you can relax and think that you covered. Steve Selangut gives an explanation why the 401(K) and pension plan from companies are not a safe bet of a stress free retirement life.

The good news about the Internet is the information we can get our cursors on instantly; the bad news is the information we can get our heads around instantly, but without any way of gauging accuracy, relevance, or completeness. This is particularly evident in the financial-investment-retirement world, where thousands of websites tell us how to do things and why, and why things work the way they do and how. Few gurus explain why and how certain concepts and plans of action just may not work the way they are supposed to.

You don’t need to read very far before the fingernail-screeching 401(k) chalkboard becomes deafening. For example, do they provide: 1) free money from employers, 2) lower taxable income, 3) retirement without any worries about money, or are they, 4) one of the most popular retirement plans.

The inadequacies I’m talking about may seem nit-picky at first blush, but the misconceptions and invalid expectations they nurture in inexperienced investors are mind-blowing. Employers are providing a valuable benefit in the form of a defined contribution savings plan, a self-directed investment program that has little in common with defined benefit retirement and pension plans. It’s not free money at all. It’s a clever, goal-directed, business expense that is both touchy-feely visible to you and far less expensive for your boss. It’s a good deal, but not a retirement plan.

Although it is true that you do not pay taxes on your contributions during your earning years, you will undoubtedly pay through both nostrils when you retire. If your karma is off, you may find yourself trying to retire at a time when the stock market is not in a party mood and your shrinking mutual funds just don’t seem as secure as you thought they were a few months earlier. Typically, the 65-year-old retiree can expect four or five major mutual fund shrinkage during retirement.

Similarly, more fortunate retirees (those who get the “gelt” during a rally) generally fail to lock in a guaranteed stream of income, and find themselves in the same cyclical conundrum as their less market-timely brethren. The money worries continue well after retirement; the taxes become much larger than anyone ever anticipates; the misconception that the 401(k) is a retirement plan continues. In fact, a recent president once proposed to change the only true retirement program that most of us belong to into a similar non-retirement program.

No, this isn’t just semantics. The differences between retirement programs and savings programs are very real, extremely fundamental, and politically incomprehensible to legislators— so long as it’s not their money.

Retirement programs are income machines designed to support people, not to make them feel wealthy, investment savvy, or temporarily tax-free. Pension plans produce fixed amounts of monthly income that don’t change appreciably when dot-coms, real estate, CDOs, or index funds (they’re next) self-destruct. You just can’t buy dinner or medications with currency futures, gold bars, or appreciated acreage.

The investments contained in a pension plan are designed to produce income, and are managed by trustees who are experienced in constructing safe, conservative, diversified programs that are just as boring as they can possibly be. Most pension plan benefits are calculated as a percentage of the amount earned while employed. The Social Security retirement/welfare plan is a tontinesque Ponzi scheme based on the government’s ability to continually abuse taxpayers. There are no investments at all, and no trustees… just IOUs.

Defined benefit pension programs are rapidly becoming extinct— corporate America can no longer afford them, along with 50% of total Social Security contributions, employee health care, and CEOs who collect $50 million per year from their unwary shareholders. But those that have survived (notably, labor union plans, retirement annuity contracts, and the Congressional Pension System) produce monthly income checks without any problems whatsoever. And here we thought our congressional leaders were incompetent— not when it comes to their own benefit package + COLAs.

Still, the 401(k) plan deserves to be every bit as popular as it has become. It, and the vast array of complicated IRAs, could help save Social Security, improve the economy, and create jobs— all those good things that neither of the presidential candidates have a chance of achieving. Just two simple strokes of an Oval Office ballpoint get it done: 1) Eliminate all taxes of any kind, at any jurisdictional level, on any form of investment and/or retirement income. 2) Replace the failing Social Security system with a private pension system, funded by taxpayers only and managed by the existing insurance industry infrastructure.

How do we make the 401(k) plan provide more retirement security? That’s not so difficult either. Simply dictate that all plans require participants to invest at least 60% of their assets in individual (plain vanilla) income securities that can be withdrawn “in kind” at retirement.

Until that happens, we just have to educate people better and make the appropriate distinctions between an as-speculative-as-you-care-to-make-it savings and investment plan and a pretty-much-guaranteed retirement or pension plan. Existing 401(k) participants should contribute enough to get the matching contribution, and start a personal tax-free income account with whatever disposable income is left.

Now about that Congressional Pension Plan— we’ve only our apathetic selves to blame. 

Secure Your Financial Success in just a few Steps.


If there is one business that is doing very well is the financial advisory services. Just browse through the net and see how many people are offering financial services, the problem is that majority are after the little money you have left. All these are signs that people are desperate for some good old financial advice, and as you sit down and go through all the information you may have gathered in your quest for financial advice, consider that most of the times it’s not whether you know the rules of the game, but your game plan, because sometimes you may have all the information in the world, but still end up broke. The following article by Amanda L Moore illustrates a game plan that will secure you financial success in just a few steps.

There’s a reason that when you do an internet search for “songs about money” you get over 5 million hits in .25 seconds: everyone wants a solid financial future. Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to get one. Establishing a solid foundation ensures that you, and your loved ones will have enough money to live comfortably and securely. You can build this financial foundation by establishing a plan of action.

Step 1 – Tax-sheltered Investments

If your employer offers a pretax retirement plan, it may help you meet your goals faster than regular taxable accounts. The investing strategy that works for most people is:

  1. Invest enough in your employer plan to take advantage of any matching funds.
  2. If eligible, invest in a Roth IRA
  3. Pay off any high-rate consumer debt (credit cards, car loans, etc.)
  4. Max out your employer pretax plan.
  5. Invest in a taxable account.

Step 2 – Asset Allocation

Anticipating what you’re going to need money for 30 years from now is hard, but it’s the key to saving for your future goals. One of the most important things to do is to start investing and to invest appropriately. Asset allocation – how much you have invested in different investment types – is the single most important facet of investing.

You need to establish what your goals are, when you want to achieve them and what risks you’re willing to take. A quick search on asset allocation calculators will help you figure this out. Then you can set up your investment contributions to happen automatically and just let it grow.

Unfortunately, just saving isn’t enough. You also need to make sure that you have protected yourself from setbacks.

Step 3 – Emergency Fund

Your emergency fund exists to help you through an unexpected crisis such as losing your job or other large expenses. The rule of thumb is to have 3-6 months worth of expenses saved in a low-risk, liquid savings account. The more risky your job and lifestyle, the more you should have on hand.

By saving appropriately in an emergency fund you protect your taxable, and retirement portfolios because if an emergency happens you won’t be required to liquidate your investments or go into debt in order to cover the expenses. Doing either of those things can do serious damage to your investment plan, and set your goals back by years.

Step 4 – Insurance

Acquiring adequate insurance coverage reduces the risk that, should something happen to you, your family will have to struggle financially. There are two types of insurance that most younger people should consider.

Disability insurance will replace some/all of your income if you are unable to work. If you’re in a specialized field, make sure that you get appropriate disability insurance that covers you not being able to work *in that field*, otherwise you may find yourself with a forced career change.

Life insurance will protect your family in the event of your death. It will ensure that your family can maintain its standard of living. Some people have a life insurance policy through their employer so before you buy your own, figure out what you already have and how much you need to supplement it. People who have no dependents probably don’t need to worry about acquiring life insurance assuming that they are not leaving behind a pile of debt. However, if you have a family you should figure out how much you’d need to pay off your home, and cover your children’s living and education expenses through college. You may also want to include enough for your spouse to be retrained for the workforce if they are a stay-at-home parent.

Something else to consider is long-term care insurance which will cover the cost of a nursing home or other specialized facility. And, of course, keep your auto, health and homeowners/renters insurance up to date at all times. These simple steps can get and keep you on the road to a strong financial future.

Living Beyond Your Means will lead to Bankruptcy


This week I have decided to dedicate my articles to areas that are the major causes of financial mismanagement across many countries, not only in America. Since, this is the last week of 2010, I hope that next year it will be different, but it can only be different if YOU do things differently. One of the areas that brought about the financial mess we are in, is the lifestyle we have adopted of owning everything we ”want,” which might not necessarily be what we ”need.” This has resulted in a lifestyle of living beyond our means which ultimately leads to financial bankruptcy. Charles Perez writes in the following article how disastrous the consequences of living beyond your means can be.

There are several general factors and specific individual circumstances that are the causes of bankruptcy for so many across the US. American consumers are trained to become spenders from an early age, teenagers can easily get credit cards and everyone in the country at one point or another has gotten offers for personal loans or pre-approved offers for credit. Not only that but all of this is more easily done now online, where a simple online application can get you a credit card within 10 working days.

The entire country, from the US government to minimum wage employees are debt ridden, and continuously spend more than they make. More of the average family’s income is going toward financial obligations, and more of this income is going towards credit card debts. Everyone borrows to own and to have now what they otherwise could not, and no one seriously considers the consequences of living beyond their means until filing bankruptcy is the only feasible solution to the burdens of debt.

Individual responsibility and discipline becomes very negotiable when it comes to “wants” and as well-trained consumers, the average spender is able to negotiate a “want” into a “need” rather easily. It’s these actions on the individual level that accumulate debt over long periods that are the main causes of bankruptcy for most single and married filers.

The average American family does not save enough

Federal surveys reveal that Americans are nearly $2 trillion dollars in debt, which equals to around $20 thousand dollars per household, not including mortgage debt. Because credit is so easy to attain even if the individual does not have a positive credit history, it allows people to remain in debt. Americans with credit cards spend more than they should, and do not put away enough of what they earn.

Why Savings should be a priority

No one is able to accurately predict what predicaments or life changing events one will experience in their lives. Having an emergency account where funds can be held for emergencies is as scarce as low mortgage rates. The average American family has a savings account with limited funds, this is not enough to help these families cope with job loss, sudden death in the family or emergency medical bills. Should these events become the case for people in these financial states, filing bankruptcy would be the only way to alleviate the pressures of incurred debts due to life changing events.

Signs that you may be living beyond your means:

  1. You have two mortgages on your home, at least one of them is an adjustable rate
  2. You borrow from you home’s equity to pay for luxuries such as cars and vacations or to pay other debts
  3. You use a credit card to pay the minimum payment on another credit card account
  4. You take cash advances from you equity account or credit card to pay for necessities
  5. You apply for and get another credit card when you max out the ones you have
  6. You get nervous or have an uneasy feeling when bills arrive at your mailbox
  7. You feel the need to keep up with your neighbors (the grass is greener syndrome), and impress friends and family

All of the above are some of the major causes of bankruptcy and they slowly creep up on the individual, all of it is often overlooked and put aside while pretending that it will all just work itself out eventually. The eventual outcome from these habits is normally an unbearable amount of debt, and filing bankruptcy may seem like the end of the world to the individual, but it is one of the best benefits extended to all American citizens by the federal government. It is a fresh financial start. Even though new bankruptcy laws have made it a little more difficult for individuals to discharge their debts filing bankruptcy chapter 7 or rearranging their debts with bankruptcy chapter 13, people are still finding relief in bankruptcy in large numbers.

Five Simple Money Rules


The year is coming to a close in a few days, as the festive season will be over in a week. As we prepare to usher in the new year, I hope your Calender is not the only thing that will change in your life. The past year has been rough for a lot of people, and surely I know you want to do something next year so it turns out different the next festive season. One thing that can make a difference in one’s financial life is the money rules we have in our lives, because there are certain rules that will guarantee you financial success is you follow them, or you’ll end up just the way you are next year, if you ignore them. The following article by Miata Edoga illustrates Five simple Money Rules that can lead you to financial freedom.

The idea of tackling their financial situation often intimidates people. They feel as if the situation is too large, too overwhelming, to be tackled, and so they adopt the Ostrich mentality (ie sticking their head in the ground), and say things like “I will sort out my finances when I get my “big break”… at least, I know I did!

But the reality is that there are several small, simple things that anyone can do to improve their financial situation right away, things that will lay great ground work to build on over the course of people’s creative careers.

Pay Yourself First

This really is the corner-stone of any long-term financial stability, let alone wealth. What this actually means is simply that, every month, you are putting a set percentage of your income into a high interest savings account, and not touching it until you are ready to invest with that money. And that is the key. This is not the “rainy day” account that you dip into when things get hard, nor is this the “splurge” account to get something special for yourself as a celebration. Money is only withdrawn from this account to buy assets with – an asset being defined in this case as something that either makes you money, or appreciates (increases) in value (so a new car would not be an asset under this definition!). Do this consistently and, over time, you will build up a very nice amount of cash to be investing with.

Regular Money Days – records & Organization

A “Money Day” is simply a day that you set aside to work on your finances. Now, it does not have to be a whole day, of course – unless your situation merits it… usually because you haven’t done one for a long time! Personally, I set aside a couple of hours every other week, and then a meeting with my accountant over the phone every couple of months. Doing this accomplishes two things:

  1. it keeps your accounts in impeccable order; and
  2. it allows you not to think about your finances between times, freeing you up to think about and do other things… like your art

Fore-cast your spending

Forecasting is the process of allocating where your money will be spent. You start by going through your Chart of Expenses, and finding out where and how you currently spend your money. You then go through that list, and determine which categories cannot change (rent, for example) and which ones can (groceries, entertainment etc). Having got that list, you can then make strong, educated decisions about where you choose to spend your money… as opposed to just blindly trying to cut out Starbucks or eating out. And that is the big difference between this process and traditional budgeting. We never suggest eliminating a category, as we have all heard “absence makes the heart grow fonder”. But as opposed to going to Starbucks every day, can you go every other day? Or order a Tall instead of a Venti? Doing this in several areas can make a huge difference to your overall spending.

Keep business separate from personal

Many of us do something called “co-mingling”: we operate our entire lives out of a personal checking account. The problem with this is that no “real” business does this – you would never see the CEO of Kinkos write a check for the company out of his personal account. What we need to do, at the very least, is set up a DBA (Doing Business As) account ( can help with this) for our artistic career, and get a business bank account associated with that DBA. Not only does this then allow us to clearly see what we are spending, and earning through our acting career or art sales, but it also legitimizes the tax deductions we take due to our art – the IRS can clearly see that we are running our career as a business, not as a hobby. The reason this is important? Business expenses are deductible, hobby expenses are not (this distinction can hurt, to the tune of thousands of dollars of back taxes: one of our students got nailed this way)

Regular financial education

Keep doing what you are doing right now! We take time to go to art school, acting classes, workshops… but we expect our finances – something most of us have never worked on (a fundamental problem with our education system, and something we will address in a separate article) – to somehow take care of themselves. Not only is this not realistic, it is dangerous, as we can make numerous serious mistakes blundering around while we try, and find our financial way. The biggest reason people stop pursuing their artistic careers is lack of money. Knowing this, doesn’t it make sense to put some time into financial education now, so that you are around for the long-term? We read all the time about people only breaking out in their forties: wouldn’t it have been sad if they had to leave the arts before then, because they had to make money? And wouldn’t it be sad if that was going to happen to you… and you had to quit for the same reason? So carve out some time now to learn about money – it will be well worth it in the long run.

So there you have it – five simple things you can implement right now that will significantly improve your financial picture over the coming months and years. Incorporating all of these things into you daily and weekly lives is only a tiny time commitment of time, but the dividends from doing so can last a lifetime.

Financial Mistakes You may be Making!


MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYBODY, as we sit down to celebrate this festive season with family and friends, lets forget the financial difficulties we are having in our lives for a few hours or days. And as the year comes to a close, lets sit down and review our finances, and go over the mistakes we made that exacerbated our already fragile economic situation. It seems that there are common mistakes we make that makes financial recovery difficult, and it is these mistakes that we should avoid in the year 2011. The following article by Steve Gillman illustrates five common financial mistakes we make that prevent us from achieving our financial goals.

All of us make financial mistakes, and research in the new fields of evolutionary economics and behavioral economics are starting to explain why. It will be good to have this knowledge someday. But in the meantime, here are five of the more common money mistakes you may be making, so you can start correcting them now.

1. Making A Competition Of Financial Decisions

Trying to “beat” anyone else in a financial transaction is a bad habit, unless you are playing poker or negotiating a business or investment deal. The first people to buy new technology get to show it off, but they also get the worst version at the highest price. If you “win” at an auction it means you paid more than anyone else was willing to pay. Looked at that way it doesn’t seem so smart.

Evolutionary economics explains why we feel this need to “win.” It developed as a way to gain a better position in the tribe, which increased one’s survival odds thousands of years ago. This tendency of ours is of very little value in a modern economy, so ignoring such urges is wiser.

2. Believing You Are Owed Something

Nobody owes you a thing, unless you have a contract or a promise. Dwelling on what is “owed” to you is a financial mistake because it gets in the way of doing what is necessary. And why does anyone owe you a thing? For example, health insurance came to be expected of large employers based on nothing more than the fact that many provided it. Had enough companies provided cars to employees, we would think we are “owed” a car by our employer.

Forget what is “owed” to you. Just work honestly to get what you can. Ask for a raise, but if you’re not paid enough, find another job. Collect that unemployment benefit if it’s available, but don’t think others have an obligation to provide your income for you. Once you stop looking for your “due” you can start looking at how to make money, and create what you need for yourself. Usually this means seeing what others want, and finding a way to provide it for a paycheck or a profit.

3. Believing Value Is About Prices

Suppose a television normally sells for $900 and is on sale for $400. Is that a good value? Most people may think so, but the value of personal items is measured by what the individual user needs. If you’re as happy with a $200 television, then the other is over-priced from your perspective. Such personal purchases are worth only what it makes sense for you to pay. If a $20,000 car is worth just $3,000 to you, then that’s that (and you don’t buy it).

4. Believing Value Is All About You

I once saw a man lose $30,000 by pricing his home too high, and leaving it empty for years – one of the more common financial mistakes. With investments, value has nothing to do with what you think a thing is worth. The only important measure is what the market will pay for it.

People often confuse personal consumption items with investments, thinking, for example, that a car is an investment. A $22,000 kitchen remodeling project isn’t an investment either, if future buyers will pay only $10,000 more for the home afterwards. The owner might like to think it added $30,000 in value, but his ideas are irrelevant. He better enjoy that new stove and cupboards, because they were not investments, but a $12,000 personal purchase (that’s his net loss).

5. Believing High Profits Are Unfair

In any honest sale, the price is fair, or it wouldn’t have been paid. Consider if your own house had a market value of $400,000 and you wanted to sell it. Would you lower the price to make it more “fair?” Not likely, so why expect any business to charge less than what the market dictates?

How much profit is made on something is entirely irrelevant to what its value is. Your choice is to buy it or not. It’s a financial mistake to waste time complaining about a profit you would gladly accept if you were on the other side of the transaction. The truth is that you wouldn’t buy it if it wasn’t a fair price, and nobody (in a free country) is forcing you to. Spend your energy looking for a better alternative or finding ways to make more money instead.

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