What’s so funny about peace, love, planning?
BY ROD WALTON World Staff Writer
Monday, September 24, 2012
9/24/12 at 6:49 AM
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Is it any wonder that the American government can't pay its bills?
You get the government you deserve, I've heard it said. And, truth is, many of us spend more than we make and don't pay enough attention to the bottom line until it's forced on us.
I've had my moments in the red ink, thank you very little. Why should our government be any different?
So the politicians talk now about preserving the union for the benefit of our youngsters. We'll see if they actually do anything about it, but the question best taken from this may be the most personal: How do we teach our children to take care of their money should they have any in the future?
Resources are aplenty, at least for information. Author Neale Godfrey has the Children Financial Network website and wrote "Money Doesn't Grow on Trees: A Parent's Guide to Raising Financially Responsible Children." Another website, themint.org, covers everything from earning, saving and giving to tips for tweeners, pointers for parents and ideas for teachers who want to work finances into their curriculum.
Practicalmoneyskills.com features games such as "financial football" and a "tooth fairy calculator" determining how much the creepy character should leave behind per tooth. The tooth fairy calculator, however, is from Visa Inc. and is downloadable from iTunes.
Full disclosure: We haven't talked nearly enough about money in our house, although the topic comes up more often now in conversations with our collegians. We don't do allowances, although rewards are paid out for good grades and some sports accomplishments.
Why is it so important to ground your children, fiscally, that is? Well, this world grows ever more complex with more and more toys, while wages have stagnated for a while. Who knows where the pot of gold is these days, so holding on to what you got is more important than ever. But also having enough left over to give some away, whether it's to church or another charitable cause, is good for the soul.
I'm for the "three jars" economic theory - you have one jar for spending, one for saving and the other for charity.
Now if we could just get them to take more interest in politics. Unfortunately, I'm not sure they can believe any of the economic promises on either side of the aisle.
Rod Walton 918-581-8457
Teach kids to be financially responsible early, so they don't have empty pockets in the future. TOM GILBERT / Tulsa World file