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(ABC)   Americans are in such lousy financial shape that 4 in 10 say they could not come up with $2,000 if their lives depended on it   (abcnews.go.com) divider line 424
    More: Sad, Americans, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Pew Charitable Trusts, Sufis, confidence interval  
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6749 clicks; posted to Main » on 08 Apr 2014 at 10:16 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



424 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-04-08 12:42:07 PM  

TheWhoppah: Failure to raise $2000 for a down payment on an attorney causes students and young adults to plead guilty in cases where they really shouldn't.  Over their lifetime this simple mistake will lower their lifetime earning potential by several hundred thousand dollars.  The mistake is magnified when you consider that they probably COULD have sold their car or borrowed the $2000 from GrandMa if they were not embarrassed to admit they got busted with drugs or for petty theft.


I'm poor because I'm not buying enough lottery tickets. Statistically, it's true.

I'm poor because I'm not beating the wrap often enough. Statistically, it's true.

I'm poor because I make kids I can't feed, clothe or care for, buy cable TV and other stuff that I don't need, oh, refuse to work one job let alone two and I didn't take advantage of the free high school education that my government gave me.
 
2014-04-08 12:42:34 PM  

Fubini: JusticeandIndependence: But it's only $50 a month for satellite.  you can afford that easy.....

A lot of poor rural people have satellite service because it's the only way to get TV or internet (especially since the digital TV switch). By the way, those dishes are practically worthless in the resale market, think $10-$50 worthless.

As others have pointed out, TV and internet service are pretty much non-negotiable in this day and age. I'd sooner get rid of my car than I would get rid of my internet service.


You can use the internet for free in most  libraries
 
2014-04-08 12:42:37 PM  

Thunderpipes: Nutsac_Jim: lennavan: More than one-third of workers (36 percent) have only $1,000 saved for their later years

I really wish we could have a (D) Medicare / Social Security and a (R) one.  If you vote (R) consistently, then upon retirement, you get the (R) plan.  And yes, that means all along the way you get to pay whatever the lower tax rate associated would be.  We'll see how well that plan works out for you.

I'll take a stab at it.

Instead of sapping you for 12.5% and the promise of giving you some back later, you
keep your 12.5% and invest it in some nice trustworth S&P500 IRA.

So you are not a dumbass, and you make 100k just for giggles and it is near the cap for SS anyway.
using this tea part website
https://www.investor.gov/tools/calculators/compound-interest-calcula to r#.U0QMQPldXrQ

we assume historical average of 8% in the market.  None of that 25% that obama gives us.
You now have
$1,427,368.46   for retirement after 30 years.

30 years, mind you, not working until you are 70

That gives you about $5000 a month to retire on , assuming you back off the stock market and move to bonds and dividend stocks, and your money is only making 4%, and you don't take some of that and buy income generating rental properties. etc.

Or.. you can take the $1700 a month that Social security will give you.


Oh yeah, if you die when you are 61, on the R plan, your kids get all your money.  They can use it to pay off their student loans, which I hear that people have a hard time paying nowadays.  Or they can buy a decent small house and one of those small income generating rental properties.

But if you signed up for the D plan, you get $1700/mo.   And if you die at 61,
YOUR KIDS GET DICK.

Don't post numbers in a liberal forum, drives them nuts. Government knows best. People should not be allowed to take care of themselves, it is not fair.


Oh for Christ's sake, he used $100K as his example.  How many of the 4 out of 10 do you think are even close to that?  In order to make money in the market you have to have money to invest in the market in the first place.
 
2014-04-08 12:43:24 PM  

Thunderpipes: Everyone knows an individual can get much more out of their money. SS was never designed to give a cushy retirement for 25 years. What was the average lifetime when it was enacted, 65?


You miss the point. Social Security is not just an investment vehicle. It is also an insurance plan that spreads risk. That lowers your yield, true, but it also lowers your risk.

As an individual your investment choices could leave you unable to support yourself. In the SS pool you are guaranteed the income later.

It's not fair or reasonable to compare returns that are "at risk" to a sure thing.
 
2014-04-08 12:43:33 PM  
At least this thread delivered on the huge pile of self-righteous bastards who have never had a bad thing happen to them, to tell us all how we *should* have been handling our finances since we were 5.

\Thanks, FARK
 
2014-04-08 12:45:23 PM  

SpectroBoy: If you can't scrape together $2K with a gun to your head one of two things is true.

A) You are truly very poor

B) You prioritize badly.

Hint: If you have cableTV, or a smart phone, or Netflix, or recent nice clothes then B is probably where you are at.


If you think cableTV, or a smart phone, or Netflix are major sources of financial drain, A is probably where you are at.
 
2014-04-08 12:45:33 PM  
Hope my bookie doesn't read this
 
2014-04-08 12:45:36 PM  

Fubini: As others have pointed out, TV and internet service are pretty much non-negotiable in this day and age.


I'm going to go ahead and disagree with you.

TV IS NOT NECESSARY

IT"S ENTERTAINMENT


Wanting something does NOT make it non-negotiable. It just makes you someone who makes bad choices.
 
2014-04-08 12:45:50 PM  

doglover: Nutsac_Jim: doglover: Nutsac_Jim: The reason for this is that some people, not wanting to work, will just find a woman with a welfare-paid apartment and hang out.

Yes. This is totally the majority of all people.

Keep farking that chicken.

So, lest see.  I said "Some people"
and your turned that into "the majority of all people"

Do you always alter someone's argument and defeat it and claim victory?

You haven't given an argument. You've posted some drivel on an internet forum.

Actually develop an argument, toss your hat in the ring, and maybe I'll vote for ya.


Strawman.. ad hominem..  Care for any more fallacies?

Third time is the charm......
 
2014-04-08 12:47:15 PM  

Bullseyed: Liberals have assured me that cities are the only acceptable places to live and that cities have adequate public transportation. Also you can walk anywhere or take a taxi.


I think the point is that not everybody can afford to live out in the country.

And anything is walking distance if you have the time.
 
2014-04-08 12:48:29 PM  

The Missing Link: You can use the internet for free in most  libraries


That's a nice safety net, but that assumes that you have access to such a thing and that it makes sense to do so.

Think again about the poor rural American outside the broadcast range of a TV station. Even if the local libraries have internet, they might be ten or twenty miles away, they have limited hours of availability, and you've got to compete for computer time with other patrons.
 
2014-04-08 12:49:31 PM  

impaler: If you think cableTV, or a smart phone, or Netflix are major sources of financial drain, A is probably where you are at.


The little things add up.

If you have no financial buffer for emergencies then even small luxuries are a bad life choice.
 
2014-04-08 12:51:39 PM  
Jokes aside, that's pretty damn shocking. For a couple of years after I graduated I carried some credit card debt until I wised the hell up. Since then I've had savings, both sheltered and not. I can't conceive of not being able to come up with $2k if needed.
 
2014-04-08 12:52:18 PM  

Bullseyed: Serious Black: SlothB77: I doubt that.  4 in 10 americans don't have $2000 worth of stuff they can sell if their lives depended on it?  If you own a flat screen tv, a couch and a bike or a car, you are getting pretty close to that number.  throw in a gun, computer and cell phone or other random appliances and you can get there.

So people should sell their primary source of transportation when they have an emergency? Wouldn't that impede them from making more money in the future and, thus, prolong the emergency?

Liberals have assured me that cities are the only acceptable places to live and that cities have adequate public transportation. Also you can walk anywhere or take a taxi.


Look, there's a real problem with selling out of your car.  And that is in employment.

On the lower hourly-wage end of life, that is actually a deal-breaker question.  "Do you have a working car?"  No car, no job. Period. This is a little better in urban areas.  But, and I'm not exaggerating this at all, in my childhood hometown you will not get a job at McDonald's or Casey's General Store without owning a car.  This is dumb as all hell.  If you live in that town, it would be physically impossible to be two miles from those establishments.  Flat as a pancake Kansas we're talking about.  Good weather for pedaling most of the time, but most people can walk two miles in weather that stops cars dead. A car should be absolutely unnecessary in that situation, right?  And, yet... no car, no job.
 
2014-04-08 12:52:55 PM  

Fubini: The Missing Link: You can use the internet for free in most  libraries

That's a nice safety net, but that assumes that you have access to such a thing and that it makes sense to do so.

Think again about the poor rural American outside the broadcast range of a TV station. Even if the local libraries have internet, they might be ten or twenty miles away, they have limited hours of availability, and you've got to compete for computer time with other patrons.


Really?

If you are hurting for money you do what you have to do. Internet is not a necessity, a obama phone is not a necessity. TV is not a necessity. Necessities are things like food, water, shelter. The rest are luxuries. If you cannot afford a luxury, you should not have that luxury because you need to focus on the necessities (food, water, shelter)

This is not hard to comprehend.
 
2014-04-08 12:55:21 PM  

The Missing Link: I have never been poor and looking for work while being out of a job.


The Missing Link: Seriously, I HAVE NEVER BEEN POOR AND LOOKING FOR WORK, WHILE BEING OUT OF A JOB.

The Missing Link: No, NEVER.  I HAVE NEVER BEEN POOR AND LOOKING FOR WORK.  FFS PEOPLE This is not hard to comprehend.


We know.  Geez dude, you don't have to beat us over the head with it.
 
2014-04-08 12:57:14 PM  

Dimensio: SlothB77: I doubt that.  4 in 10 americans don't have $2000 worth of stuff they can sell if their lives depended on it?  If you own a flat screen tv, a couch and a bike or a car, you are getting pretty close to that number.  throw in a gun, computer and cell phone or other random appliances and you can get there.

but yeah, after you sell all that stuff, you don't have much left.

In fact, the firearm may be the most effective tool for obtaining $2000 in a short time period.


That's kind of a point, there - if my LIFE depends on getting $2000, I'm getting it - and I don't care how.
Actually, from society's point of view, it would probably be a good idea to avoid scenarios where people are put in that position.
 
2014-04-08 12:57:26 PM  

SpectroBoy: I'm going to go ahead and disagree with you.

TV IS NOT NECESSARY

IT"S ENTERTAINMENT

Wanting something does NOT make it non-negotiable. It just makes you someone who makes bad choices.


TV and the internet both provide general news and emergency alert information. A cell phone or weather radio provide can provide emergency alerts, but can't provide further information or general news, and generally don't cover non-weather emergencies.

That certainly justifies having a TV set, and if you don't get over-the-air programming, it justifies an expenditure on cable TV or internet service.

It's also true that some kind of entertainment is warranted, even for the poorest of the poor. If you get over-the-air TV, or live next to a library or something, then that's great, but not everyone has access to that.
 
2014-04-08 12:57:38 PM  

Bullseyed: So 4 in 10 Americans have no TV, video game console, tablet, smart phone, car?


I don't think my 8 year old Vizio, half-broken Wii, tablet that cost $150 new, 3 year old phone, and car nearing a quarter million miles are worth as much as you they are.

Why do old people think everything with an LCD screen can be sold for decent money?

/ Could get $2000 together in about 20 minutes. Just not from selling my nearly worthless shiat.
 
2014-04-08 12:58:13 PM  
limeyfellow:

People are used to doing things in tens. Ten fingers, ten toes, ten numbers in the decimal system. That is why they use the 4 in 10, even if it is a bad fraction to use.

*looks at both hands*

*looks at one hand*

Whoa. I could have figured out 2 out of 5 even easier.

/ Have you ever thought about your hands, man?
 
2014-04-08 12:58:20 PM  

MadHatter500: Now recompute for $20k per year of income, not $100k.  It's the min wagers that SS is for, not above average incomes.  But you knew that already, and think the poor should starve to death once they're done serving their masters.

Also, your math is wrong - you won't get 12.5%.  You'll get 6.25%.  That guy paying you gets to keep the other 6.25%, and has no reason to give it to you.



If you want to use 20k, fine.  Multiple everything by 1/5.

You still steal all the social security from poor people when they die at 61.  But you knew that, didn't you.

You get 12.5%, if you are self employed and pay the actual social security tax.


If you are a 6.25% er, then you might not get it.  Odds are you will, or Spacely's Sprockets will get all of Cogswell's Cogs' good employees, because Spacely gave the 6.25% to the employees.
 
2014-04-08 01:00:42 PM  
Is the statistic based on who doesn't have access to two thousand dollars cash? Because that would be me.

Or does it include people who can't get $2000 in a very short period of time - Not me, I have good credit and could get a short term loan from the bank.
 
2014-04-08 01:00:56 PM  

Fubini: TV and the internet both provide general news and emergency alert information. A cell phone or weather radio provide can provide emergency alerts, but can't provide further information or general news, and generally don't cover non-weather emergencies.


Many many people struggling to get by are looking for more/better jobs so they can pay for shiat.  To do that, you have to apply for jobs.  The main method for applying for jobs these days is the internet.  When an employer is interested in your application/resumé they have to contact you to set up either a phone interview or an in person interview.  How are they going to contact someone who doesn't have internet or phone?

Anyone who doesn't think internet/phone are a necessity these days has never searched for a job.
 
2014-04-08 01:03:52 PM  

The Missing Link: If you are hurting for money you do what you have to do. Internet is not a necessity, a obama phone is not a necessity. TV is not a necessity. Necessities are things like food, water, shelter. The rest are luxuries. If you cannot afford a luxury, you should not have that luxury because you need to focus on the necessities (food, water, shelter)


Food, water, shelter are biological necessities. Economic necessity is a secure source of income and social necessity is a reasonable way to understand and interact with the world. Lots of jobs effectively require an internet connection at home, either to apply or to have, and lots of companies and agencies primarily interact with customers through the internet these days.

At the very least, you're at a huge disadvantage if you don't have a reliable internet connection. Think about a person who has to use paper-bound yellow pages to look up phone numbers, call offices, wait to talk to someone in person, etc. That worked great twenty years ago, but the world just isn't organized that way anymore.
 
2014-04-08 01:04:10 PM  

MadHatter500: Now recompute for $20k per year of income, not $100k.  It's the min wagers that SS is for, not above average incomes.



282,754.89   or $943 a month.

vs

$669.00/mo  from Social security.


♫  Just come on back if you ever wanna try again ♫
 
2014-04-08 01:05:20 PM  
I'm confused... are we advocating the murder of the financial top or are we having savings pissing contests?  Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of both.

OH! Let's compare the cost of our plans for offing CEOs!

I say the most cost-effective is going to be black powder explosives.  You can get the materials cheap and do a lot of damage.  I'm assuming urban deployment.
 
2014-04-08 01:05:24 PM  
Either I am relatively well-off, or I am even more successful at being a tightwad cheapskate than I had realised.

/No cable TV.
//No Netflix.
 
2014-04-08 01:06:24 PM  

Delawheredad: Before my divorce i had access to that kind of money readily. Since my divorce I have come perilously close to homeless several times. I have a good job with great benefits but i was so taken to the cleaners by my ex wife that my credit union at work turned me down for a measly $3,000 loan!

I once owned a five bedroom house now i live in a rented room in some other guy's house!

DIVORCE SUCKS!


Not if done properly.

/much better off now even paing 1k a month in child support
//she shoulda lawyered up.
 
2014-04-08 01:06:34 PM  

SpectroBoy: TV IS NOT NECESSARY

IT"S ENTERTAINMENT


Wanting something does NOT make it non-negotiable. It just makes you someone who makes bad choices.


Humans are creatures that NEED to be entertained, and as far as cost-effective entertainment goes, TV is about the highest bang for the buck.

If you think people's route to financial prosperity is anyway affected by owning a TV, you suck at math.
 
2014-04-08 01:07:44 PM  

Geoff Peterson: The Muthaship: And 8 out of 24 can't reduce a fraction.

4 in 10 sounds worse than 2 in 5, I guess, but to me 2 in 5 sounds worse.

[the more you know.jpg]


Most journalists are so because they sucked at everything else.  This writer may not realize 2/5 and 4/10 are the same thing. If you want to blow his mind, tell him that is 40%.
 
2014-04-08 01:09:54 PM  
If I can pump enough caps in the heads of potential Walmart customers, I can probably scrape up 2K.
 
2014-04-08 01:10:21 PM  

thurstonxhowell: Bullseyed: So 4 in 10 Americans have no TV, video game console, tablet, smart phone, car?

I don't think my 8 year old Vizio, half-broken Wii, tablet that cost $150 new, 3 year old phone, and car nearing a quarter million miles are worth as much as you they are.

Why do old people think everything with an LCD screen can be sold for decent money?

/ Could get $2000 together in about 20 minutes. Just not from selling my nearly worthless shiat.


There's probably at least that much in Lovey's bra.
 
2014-04-08 01:13:40 PM  

Dimensio: Either I am relatively well-off, or I am even more successful at being a tightwad cheapskate than I had realised.

/No cable TV.
//No Netflix.


but still found $5 a month to give to Drew for his beer budget
 
2014-04-08 01:13:47 PM  

Jument: Jokes aside, that's pretty damn shocking. For a couple of years after I graduated I carried some credit card debt until I wised the hell up. Since then I've had savings, both sheltered and not. I can't conceive of not being able to come up with $2k if needed.


My wife worried about this too.  Then one day she figured the solution was to marry a guy and transfer
the worrying about from where the $2k over to some me.

Problem solved.
 
2014-04-08 01:15:08 PM  

lennavan: Especially when you're highly motivated to sell now rather than hold out for a better price.


Bingo.  Can't tell you how often we wished we'd just had more time to sell that stuff.  But landlords hold little respect for the nuances of successful negotiation.

lennavan: Did you consider food stamps/unemployment/welfare/etc? I know it's a giant blow to the ego but that really helps weather the emergency hump.


I've held off on doing that at great expense to my health.  I'm at the point now where I only eat once every two or three days and sometimes sleep even less.  I could describe a litany of symptoms that would rid the thread of the squeamish.

So why hold off?  Why not get on government assistance?

FARK-dot-motherfarking-com

I've been coming to this website since I was a teen and on some level of our minds all voices register.  Somewhere, in the deep dark recesses of my subconscious, there is a breathy voice in a cloud of Maker's Mark that tells me that if I go on public assistance, I am a parasitic leach draining the lives of innocent people and families to serve my own selfish needs and to cover up my own foolish mistakes.  And that isn't something I ever want to be.  I loathe inflicting hardship or even mere inconvenience upon people.  That's just who I am.  I also have particularly low self-worth at this point, so statements that the poor are poor because of what shiatty failures of people they are resonate particularly strongly with me.

I'm trying to look past those voices lately.  I'm not in a location where there are people to assist me with any kind of governmental assistance but my primary focus right now needs to be mental healthcare.  As I'm sure you can infer at this point, a rough spell has taken its toll on an already unstable psychology, so progress on that needs to be made before any more can.  There's a center a couple of hours away that I've heard might offer indigent care, so I'm going to try to find a way to check them out to see if they can get me some help.

To the Farkers on the right-hand side of this thread, I am really, truly, genuinely sorry that I am going to have to do that.  It absolutely rends my heart to take from those who have not offered to give.  But I fear that the harm I may cause some of you by not going on some form of government assistance may be far greater than the harm I will surely inflict upon all of you if I do.

lennavan: Money is supposedly the #1 reason people fight and divorce. If you guys made it through that, you should be set.


I'm afraid this looks to be far from over.  The strain on the marriage is incredible.  Several times I've told myself and her that I'd leave her just to save her from the inevitable implosion, but she insists on staying.  Now I'm in freefall and she's still holding this whole thing together.  She's got to work just to keep us alive AND take care of this psychotic mess when she gets home.  And she's still around.  Says she ain't going nowhere and neither am I (though I don't know where the hell I'd go if we ever did split up).  She's an amazing woman and I'm acutely aware of how lucky I am.  =)
 
2014-04-08 01:20:08 PM  
Naw, I could come up with it. But that's only because I would be willing to do ANYTHING
 
2014-04-08 01:21:00 PM  

DrSansabeltNoShiatSlacks: If I can pump enough caps in the heads of potential Walmart customers, I can probably scrape up 2K.


you can't get cash for food stamps quickly....
 
2014-04-08 01:21:36 PM  
Well, if my numbers hit tonight, I'll have $2000. Otherwise yeah, I'm broke.
 
2014-04-08 01:22:02 PM  
I'm 27 and make 47000 a year. I can look at hitting the 65-70k mark in about a year unless shiat hits the fan nationwide. I have 0 student loan debt and one credit card with a limit of 1500 for emergencies.

Having a girlfriend sucks sometimes since money is always spent regardless of how small and low key we keep it. If she moves in with me at the end of the summer my mortgage payment gets cut in half and maybe I can get a new car.
 
2014-04-08 01:24:37 PM  

radarlove: I've been coming to this website since I was a teen and on some level of our minds all voices register. Somewhere, in the deep dark recesses of my subconscious, there is a breathy voice in a cloud of Maker's Mark that tells me that if I go on public assistance, I am a parasitic leach draining the lives of innocent people and families to serve my own selfish needs and to cover up my own foolish mistakes.


No one on Fark talks like that. Go get help, man!
 
2014-04-08 01:25:20 PM  

The Singing Bush: Nutsac_Jim: E5bie:  
 

That gives you about $5000 a month to retire on (minus the full cost of your health care, a hellovalot) ,  

To each their own. I'm for the plan that doesn' ...


What does healthcare have to do with Social security.   Healthcare is a very complicated issue.

The item being discussed was saving for retirement.

Pointing out that the example was double what the average income was does not have any effect.
Simply divide the result by two.
 with Social Security, your kids get half of zero.

You still get 3x as much and retire 10 years sooner.

Not that it's a huge amount or anyting, but kids do get SS survivor benefits if they're parents die.  It helped good ol' Paul Ryan paid for college, donchaknow.


In hindsight, I'm sure glad I had them. Dad blew his brains out when I was 7 years old, I have a mentally disabled brother 4 years older. Mom blew through the federal employee death benefit (Army Corps of Engineers in `84) of $250K in just 2 and a half years.

We lived like trash on that benefit thanks to a nearly criminally stupid surviving parent. I'm glad it existed. I am convinced we would have spent time homeless without it.
 
2014-04-08 01:27:37 PM  

fireclown: [www.mamascritics.com image 850x625]
Baby step 1:  set up an emergancy fund of $1500.

The guy is occasionally kind of nutty, but the bones of his plan are pretty sound.


your baby step is probably too big for many right now as $1,500 all at once is a big hit to alot of people, i for example would have to split it over 3 months.
 
2014-04-08 01:30:44 PM  

radarlove: lennavan: Especially when you're highly motivated to sell now rather than hold out for a better price.

Bingo.  Can't tell you how often we wished we'd just had more time to sell that stuff.  But landlords hold little respect for the nuances of successful negotiation.

lennavan: Did you consider food stamps/unemployment/welfare/etc? I know it's a giant blow to the ego but that really helps weather the emergency hump.

I've held off on doing that at great expense to my health.  I'm at the point now where I only eat once every two or three days and sometimes sleep even less.  I could describe a litany of symptoms that would rid the thread of the squeamish.

So why hold off?  Why not get on government assistance?

FARK-dot-motherfarking-com

I've been coming to this website since I was a teen and on some level of our minds all voices register.  Somewhere, in the deep dark recesses of my subconscious, there is a breathy voice in a cloud of Maker's Mark that tells me that if I go on public assistance, I am a parasitic leach draining the lives of innocent people and families to serve my own selfish needs and to cover up my own foolish mistakes.  And that isn't something I ever want to be.  I loathe inflicting hardship or even mere inconvenience upon people.  That's just who I am.  I also have particularly low self-worth at this point, so statements that the poor are poor because of what shiatty failures of people they are resonate particularly strongly with me.

I'm trying to look past those voices lately.  I'm not in a location where there are people to assist me with any kind of governmental assistance but my primary focus right now needs to be mental healthcare.  As I'm sure you can infer at this point, a rough spell has taken its toll on an already unstable psychology, so progress on that needs to be made before any more can.  There's a center a couple of hours away that I've heard might offer indigent care, so I'm going to try to find a way to check them out to see i ...


Dude if you need assistance, get it. No one is going to bemoan you for it.

The 'rights/conservative' view is there are a lot of people that need help, whether its medical, financial, etc and that they should get it. But there are also those that game the system so they don't have to do anything. That's why those on the right want those people kicked off assistance.

Give help to those that need it. Don't give help to those that don't help themselves. Big difference.
 
2014-04-08 01:32:20 PM  
Linux_Yes:  methinks

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2014-04-08 01:32:54 PM  
Good grief. If you are over 40 years old and don't have $2K on hand you have made some poor decisions.

I have two bicycles that are each worth way more than $2K if I had to liquidate something. I wouldn't though since I haven't wasted tens of thousands on kids and cigarettes.
 
2014-04-08 01:33:56 PM  

Dimensio: Either I am relatively well-off, or I am even more successful at being a tightwad cheapskate than I had realised.

/No cable TV.
//No Netflix.


More likely is that you just don't have a realistic conception of what it means to be poor.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personal_income_in_the_United_States

The median aged 25+ full-time worker with no college experience makes $31.5K per year. If they didn't finish high school that drops to $25K per year. Remember that those are medians, so half of all people in that category make less than that.

If you factor out retirees, about 45% of full time working adults between the ages of 25 and 64 make less than $25,000 per year.

About 20% of individual Americans make less than $10K per year.
 
2014-04-08 01:35:31 PM  

JusticeandIndependence: Smeggy Smurf: If I had $2k laying around I'd be $2k closer to being out of debt by tomorrow.  You don't save money when trying to get out of debt in a hurry.

This doesn't make any sense.  You don't just have "$2K lying around"  You set it aside and tell yourself it's off limits.

$85 dollars every two weeks for one year and you would have $2K "lying around"


Yeah, fark the electric company, water company etc.  Screw the grocery store too!  I dont know about you, but $85 a week is a lot of money just to park when you may have other bills to pay.
 
2014-04-08 01:37:07 PM  

doglover: radarlove: I've been coming to this website since I was a teen and on some level of our minds all voices register. Somewhere, in the deep dark recesses of my subconscious, there is a breathy voice in a cloud of Maker's Mark that tells me that if I go on public assistance, I am a parasitic leach draining the lives of innocent people and families to serve my own selfish needs and to cover up my own foolish mistakes.

No one on Fark talks like that. Go get help, man!


Seriously. There's a support network out there for you. People who tell you you're worthless for taking public assistance in any form have been borrowing from family for years.

Love yourself and take some public money and rub it all over your body.

Just because you start doesn't mean you can't stop assistance. Hell, the government will stop it for you.

Additionally, there are charitable organizations like Sally's Army that may help you.
 
2014-04-08 01:37:12 PM  

The Missing Link: Really?

If you are hurting for money you do what you have to do. Internet is not a necessity, a obama phone is not a necessity. TV is not a necessity. Necessities are things like food, water, shelter. The rest are luxuries. If you cannot afford a luxury, you should not have that luxury because you need to focus on the necessities (food, water, shelter)

This is not hard to comprehend.


There are a few phrases I use as a barometer to determine if someone is capable of having an honest conversation.  This is one of them.
 
2014-04-08 01:37:14 PM  

Fubini: The Missing Link: You can use the internet for free in most  libraries

That's a nice safety net, but that assumes that you have access to such a thing and that it makes sense to do so.

Think again about the poor rural American outside the broadcast range of a TV station. Even if the local libraries have internet, they might be ten or twenty miles away, they have limited hours of availability, and you've got to compete for computer time with other patrons.


If you live in the United States, you're almost guaranteed to have access to a library and internet.  There are more libraries here than McDonald's.  Some of the poorer reservation libraries I've found lack internet access, but it's pretty standard most other places.  So access to public internet is there, but it's also a tremendous pain in the ass.  You've got to find a library, get to a library, hope there's not a huge queue to use the machines, hope there are no time-sensitive emails from potential employers, search a dozen sites for job leads and check in with mom all before the next guy in line starts getting too antsy or before the librarian starts harping on you about time limits.  It's all doable but it sucks up a huge chunk of your time that you need to be spending hitting the pavement to follow up on the bullshiat leads you found online which almost never end up panning out.  Sort of ends up resulting in a big Catch-22.
 
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