Friday, April 24, 2009

Dave Ramsey's Town Hall For Hope

In case you missed it last night, Passionate Homemaking did a live blog-post about Dave Ramsey's Town Hall for Hope broadcast last night. (This was broadcast at churches around the country as well as on CNN Business (I think)). Anyway, one of the churches in our town actually hosted this last night but with three little kids and our favorite TV night (lame excuse, I know!) we decided not to go. After reading this blog post, I REALLY WISH that I would have been there. Here were some of the notes that she took while listening to Dave address the current state of the economy:

8:13 PM - Dave is “reading a different book” than most economists. He doesn’t believe that the government is what/who is going to “turn this thing around.”

8:19 PM - Dave is a believer in capitalism, NOT the abuse of capitalism. Business owners are to serve their customers, as opposed to draining them of their money.

8:22 PM - If you don’t serve your customers well, your business should close. You should not be bailed out. The idea that that people/businesses shouldn’t experience pain is not right. Sometimes life is not fair and sometimes it hurts. “We desperately need to love people enough to allow them to fail.” “Failure will run you towards excellence.”

8:23 PM - If you can’t fail, there’s no need to do your best. A little desperation is good for the soul.

8:27 PM - Americans need to relearn the word “NO.”

8:28 PM - Americans also need to take PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. Make things happen.

8:29 PM - Work like it depends on you. Pray like it depends on God. You can pray while you’re working.

8:31 PM - The diligent prosper.

8:32 PM - Is this our generation’s great depression? - Dave hopes it is, because the people of that era were permanently changed in the way they relate to money. This is no where near the great depression, nor is it even the worst recession since. For the individual, “You’re either 100% employed or 100% unemployed.” Statistics are irrelevant. Right now, though despite only 3% of American’s losing their jobs, half of American workers are afraid they will. We’ve got to stop the hysteria.

8:40 PM - Where can we invest other than the stock market? - Dave says 100% of the 15 year periods in the stock market there has been a profit. The market is artificially low right now. Don’t invest for spring, invest for the long term. Patience during a recession is a major thing. Dave continues to invest in the market, because he believes that excellent companies will be worth more in 15 years than they are today. Do you really believe they’re worth 1/2 of what they were last year at this time? Dave doesn’t - he believe it’s artificially low because of fear. It’s a blue light special for the investor.

8:43 PM - When will the value of my home rebound? - Dave doesn’t know, but believes the housing market will bring us out of this recession. We have extremely low interest rates right now AND houses are on sale everywhere. Foreclosure stats: 60% of the foreclosures happened in 5 states, there are some problem states. It’s not everywhere, it’s localized. Things are stuck, because fear is being bred in the media. These things are driven by fear, but real estate will rebound. It’s the best time to buy a house, but don’t buy one if you’re broke!

8:50 PM - At nearly 30, how do I begin to save money for retirement and education for my 2 year old son? Order of attack - Baby steps - 1) Get $1000 in the bank 2) Pay off all debt 3) Finish up your emergency fund 4) Invest with someone who has the heart of a teacher, NOT a salesperson.

8:52 PM - How do I know my money is safe at my bank? Dave doesn’t do business with big banks. He recommends with small banks and credit unions. Somewhere he can get his hands around someone’s neck.

8:57 PM - Should we still not invest in gold? Dave says - gold is a lousy investment! It’s sold on late night and makes you look like an idiot. Gold has not been used as a medium of exchange in a failed economy since the Roman empire. A barter based economy is what comes out of a completely failed economy. Gold can be the standard, but it has no intrinsic value. AND - it’s at a high right now. You want to invest by buying low. Gold is a lousy investment.

8:59 PM - Think outside the box! Look it up for yourself! Think for yourself. We the people are the healing agent of the economy. Not the government.

9:07 PM - What actions should we take now towards retirement? Dave says - don’t panic and get silly. That’s when you get conned. Be slow and steady. In the Tortoise and the Hare, every time the tortoise wins. Go slow and steady. Get out of debt. Get your emergency fund in place. If you’re over 50, you can supersize your IRA investments.

9:12 PM - When will the job rate get better? Dave doesn’t know. Job loss is the symptom not the cause of the economic problem. When the economy gets better, jobs will be created. Making up jobs will not fix this. The bad news is, if you’re unemployed traditional work is going to be difficult to find. BUT you have to get your chin up. Your attitude is important going into interviews. Don’t wait on the economy to get better. Rethink your career track. This is your opportunity to fly and be free. If you can adjust your attitude, you can adjust your altitude. Spread your wings and fly. Is it scary? Yes! Start flapping your wings!

9:14 PM - How close are we to a cashless society? With the government in its current state many people are panicking and thinking doomsday thoughts. The day of the Lord’s return is not known by any man. While you are here, until then - those who plow should do so in hope. Keep plowing.

What to do if you’re struggling with hope:

  1. GET UP! TAKE ACTION! GET MOVING! Don’t be at home watching Oprah. Get out there! There’s a great place to go when you’re broke: To work! It’s an ATTITUDE! Activity is going to be your answer. Be proactive. Happen to things! Don’t let things just happen to you.
  2. Don’t participate in loser talk! Your income will be within 10% of the average income of your closest 10 friends. Be careful what you listen to. The books you read and the people you meet will make all the difference. Be a reader. Don’t have the “spirit of Eeyore.” Fill your brain with good stuff. “I read the Bible and read the newspaper, so I can tell what both sides are doing.” - Zig Ziglar.
  3. Begin to give again! If not your money, your time. Go serve - nursing homes and soup kitchens are a good place to start. Get your eyes off of yourself. This will help restore your hope.

If we as churches and individuals get our acts together, WE THE PEOPLE could “GIVE” the government right Out of Business.

“Hope is in the nailed scarred hands of Jesus!”

If you haven't done so already, I STRONGLY URGE you to pick up a book by Dave Ramsey. You can find one on for as little as $2 or $3 dollars! Michael and I are in our last week of his 13 week course, Financial Peace University. The average class at our church that has taken this course has paid off over $5700 in debt and saved $2500!!! In just 13 weeks! If you know Michael and I, you know that we are both pretty competitive, right? You will NEVER guess what our TOTAL DEBT PAID is!!! I almost didn't believe it when we tallied up the numbers the other night! On Monday, our last night of class, I am going to post how much we have paid off and how much we have saved......any guesses???? Trust me, you are ALL going to want to take this class when you find out!

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