Photo copyright Gordon Smith. Used with permission. Click on image for link to his photo blog.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Buckle up folks. Hard times are coming.

My parents and grandparents lived through the roaring 20's, the Wall Street Crash of 1929, the Great Depression, and World War II. Those were hard times for most Americans, but expectations and values were much different than those of today. In the early 20th century, parents and grandparents advised the young to "Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without." If we are to survive the tough economic times ahead, each of us needs to adopt this way of living.

The cost of EVERYTHING will be rising. The cost to feed, house and provide for yourself and your family will challenge you to find ways to cope with less money and to be content with much less. Because our local cities, state and Federal government have not spent their funds wisely, each of us will need to sacrifice in the months and most likely years ahead.

In addition to the increased cost of food, water, gas and electric, other unavoidable fees and taxes will raise their ugly heads. For example, the fees for automobile tags, drivers license fees, property taxes and home and automobile insurance costs will rise, along with bank and credit card fees. Oh yes, and postal fees. They have risen as well. Most recent postal rate increases.

What follows is one small sample of how cities throughout the United States may plan to increase their revenues. (You will be amazed.) The link is to an article in The Arizona Republic by Lynh Bui on 8/6/2010. Phoenix, Arizona proposed new fees for 2011. There are six small paragraphs, on six pages. Be sure to read all six. Then, do yourself a favor and check with your local city, county and State financial offices for a list of new or proposed fees and taxes in your area.

Think you've thought of all the ways cities will raise revenue? Think again. Chicago street parking set to rise again.

So....what can each of us do to survive the hard times? Lots. Stay tuned. In the meantime, here is a helpful article How to apply for help for hard times through your local Federal government agencies.

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