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Why Do I Share My Finances Every Month?

by Luke Landes

I’ve been asked this question several times over the past few years, by strangers and friends, most who don’t approve of my openness for one reason or another. Each month, I write with excruciating detail about my expenses and income, assets and liabilities, and my net worth. For example, here is my latest net worth ... Continue reading this article…

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Guest Post: Thoughts on Raising Money-Smart Kids

by Luke Landes

All this week, Consumerism Commentary is featuring articles written by others. This guest post comes from Golbguru, author of Money, Matter and More Musings. Recently, I have been reading excellent articles on the subject of kids and money. The most noteworthy among them being Allowances for Kids: Teaching Children the Value of Money by JD ... Continue reading this article…

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This Week’s Guest Posts: What We Have So Far

by Luke Landes

While I’m on vacation and visiting family in Santa Barbara, and traveling to southern California tomorrow through Saturday, Consumerism Commentary has been featuring guest bloggers this week. It’s been interesting to have a variety of viewpoints and some new voices here. In fact, there’s more coming for the remainder of the week. Here’s a rundown ... Continue reading this article…

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Guest Post: How Not to Buy a Car

by Luke Landes

All this week, Consumerism Commentary is featuring guest bloggers. In this post, KMC from Advanced Personal Finance shares a personal adventure with the local car dealership and the lesson learned. About six months ago, my wife’s car was rear-ended by a delivery truck while she was on her way to work. Fortunately, she was not ... Continue reading this article…

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Geico Cavemen: The Sitcom

by Luke Landes

Apparently ABC has ordered a pilot for a new television sitcom based on the Geico cavamen commercials. At first I found the commercials entertaining (though not very informative), but I don’t think I could handle a television show rooted in something developed by an advertising agency. What’s next? The Aflac duck getting his own show ... Continue reading this article…

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Retirement: Focus on Contributing, Not on the Market

by Luke Landes

I like spending a few minutes (but not much more) plugging in hypothetical numbers into interactive calculators like this retirement income calculator (Java required). This calculator displays how much monthly retirement income you can expect with assumptions about market return, tax bracket, and contributions. This morning, I spent a few seconds exploring a few scenarios. ... Continue reading this article…

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Amount Charged is Less Than Estimate: Psychology Involved?

by Luke Landes

When I was helping my girlfriend move to a new apartment this past weekend, we had the help of a moving company. We also had the misfortune of a snow and ice storm. After offering to pay three neighborhood kids to shovel the driveway and get rid of the ice so the moving truck would ... Continue reading this article…

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McDonald’s Subliminal Advertising on Iron Chef

by Luke Landes

I didn’t think the frame insertion technique of subliminal advertising was still being used, at least not with a hint of irony. Of all things, for some reason Iron Chef or Food Network dropped a frame or two of a McDonald’s logo into their show recently. That is, of course, unless this is a hoax. ... Continue reading this article…

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February Heating Cost Way Up

by Luke Landes

My electricity bill from February was a bit of a shock. I have a one bedroom apartment, approximately 700 square feet. To heat this space (and to use any electronic devices) last month, I’ll have to pay $236. That must be the highest amount I’ve ever paid for electricity in one month. The bill provides ... Continue reading this article…

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Money Advice From Meg Tilly: Chinese Takeout

by Luke Landes

Yesterday, I shared some quick quotations from celebrities about managing money. I liked what several of them had to say, but I’m focusing on Meg Tilly. Here’s part of what she said regarding her life after appearing in Fame. When I danced in “Fame” that was more money than I’d ever seen. It was like, ... Continue reading this article…

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Great News Footage of Rats in New York KFC/Taco Bell

by Luke Landes

This has been a hot story on the local news, and I don’t know if it’s reached the rest of the country. As people walked by the storefront of a KFC/Taco Bell restaurant in Greenwich Village, New York City, they could clearly see the fast food place infested by rats. Rats are common in this ... Continue reading this article…

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Survey Says: More Money Leads to Better Sex

by Luke Landes

If this doesn’t motivate you to raise your net worth, I couldn’t tell you what does. According to this research, having more money means you’re having more adventurous and exotic sex. The numbers look even better for women. In the survey, three-quarters of men cited more frequent sex and a greater variety of partners as ... Continue reading this article…

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A Teen Millionaire’s 3 Principles to Success

by Luke Landes

This is an excerpt from You Call the Shots, by Cameron Johnson. You can find my full review here. In this guest post, the author shares 3 principles that led him to succeed. I started my first business at age nine with $50 and a home computer, and ran it from my room at home ... Continue reading this article…

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A Quick 40%+ Profit?

by Luke Landes

I went to the bank yesterday to deposit some checks, and I picked up two rolls of the new Presidential $1 coins. There are 25 coins in a roll, and you pay the bank $25 for each. That seems to make sense. What doesn’t make sense are the people paying upwards of $35 for each ... Continue reading this article…

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Coming Up: Cameron Johnson on Writing

by Luke Landes

A few days ago, I reviewed You Call the Shots, by Cameron Johnson. If you missed it, take a look at the review. I highly recommend the book for teens interested in building their own business, parents of those teens, and some adults looking for fresh ideas in networking and marketing. The author will be ... Continue reading this article…

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Yet Another TIAA-CREF Problem With My SEP IRA

by Luke Landes

Back in April, I was assured by TIAA-CREF that my new SEP IRA contribution would be “coded” for the 2005 tax year. Guess what? I viewed my 2006 tax form provided by TIAA-CREF, and my SEP IRA contribution is included for the 2006 tax year. I am disappointed but not surprised. I’ve written about TIAA-CREF’s ... Continue reading this article…

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Chicago Fed: Could the Penny Be Worth Five Cents?

by Luke Landes

Here’s a weird application of logic, brought to you by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. It started when the cost of creating the U.S. penny went above one cent. The Mint (and therefore the government) is losing money for each of the millions of one-cent pieces it produces and puts into circulation each year. ... Continue reading this article…

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How Low Will it Go?

by Luke Landes

Last night as I was filling up my car’s tank at my favorite (lowest cost along my route) station, I was pleasantly surprised to see regular unleaded was “under” $2.00 a gallon. (To be more precise, it was listed as $1.999.) It was similar to the excitement I felt several years ago, probably around December ... Continue reading this article…

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NetFlix: It Might Be Time to Dump It

by Luke Landes

When I ditched expensive digital cable television and reverted to $16/month basic cable with less than 30 channels (many of which do not broadcast in English), I decided to sign up for NetFlix. The theory was the mail-order DVDs would fill in the entertainment void due to the lack of Comedy Central, Cartoon Network‘s Adult ... Continue reading this article…

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Idiots in New Jersey Finally Allowed to Vote

by Luke Landes

(Do you foresee jokes about New Jersey becoming a red state by 2008 as a result?) Thanks to a ruling last week, “idiots” have been granted suffrage rights in the state of New Jersey. Prior to last week, this was strictly forbidden by New Jersey’s constitution. In 1844, language was added to the state constitution ... Continue reading this article…

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