Episode-295- Listener Questions for 10-12-09 — 17 Comments

  1. Jack,

    I know you seem to despise credit cards, but I don’t understand why you don’t view them as simply a tool to be used intelligently or to be abused as the user sees fit. I’m 24 and have had a credit card since I started college. Only a few times in my life have I kept a balance on my card and have paid virtually no interest

    Overall I’ve received a free flight to Europe (valued somewhere over $1,000), a free domestic flight and frequent upgrades to business/first class. I’ve received this value by simply buying groceries, gas and other necessities that I would have paid for anyway on my card.

    I don’t feel credit cards are quite the same thing as “debt” if you are paying it off in the same manner you would use a debit card. Credit cards like any other tool can be used destructively or intelligently.

    I’m sure your going to go off about the issue all over again, but that’s how using credit cards has worked out in my life.

  2. I must chime in here b/c I had a similar rant with Jack a while back. We use a CC for as many necessary purchases as possible and get 3% cash back on the most frequent types or purchases (for us, gas and groceries) and 1% on others. We have never carried a balance – not paid a single cent in interest or fees, just get rebate checks quarterly.

    Jack will insist that using a CC you’re less likely to question “want vs. need” and will, in general, spend more than if you spend with cash. I concede somewhat to Jack in that I can see where some people would overspend using a CC. However, I still maintain that if you are disciplined, stick to a budget (we can only spend X amount on groceries, etc.) a CC is a useful tool. I’ll also state that as soon as the bonus program goes away, we’ll tear up the card.

  3. Please substitute “venomous snake” in each of your sentences where you use the word credit card and reread each of your comments. Just try it and read it out loud.

    If you want a card fine, I have told you why you shouldn’t but do it read your own comments with that one substitution. You have nothing to loose.

  4. Just make sure to insert “one man’s opinion” in front of “why you shouldn’t own a card”.

  5. Actually I’m pretty sure that right there at the bottom of every podcast is the line “… this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon.”

    So, well, there you go. 😉

  6. Hey it is always one man’s opinion just in this case I am honestly right. There is no place in your life for a credit card. You are a free man, you have your own choice to make and I support your right to make that choice.

    BUT YOU WILL NEVER and I mean NEVER have me say it is a good idea, or the right thing to do, or it is ok for some people. Credit cards serve no real purpose other then to create debt and/or increase spending. They do it well, the people that issue them are not your friends and you don’t need them. I don’t mind the stubborn person such as the two of you that insist you want them and they make sense or what ever you come up with. Your an informed adult you make your own choice, my advice be damned if necessary.

    The problem I have is with those that justify this poor choice (poor choice again is my opinion) with some bull shit reason they say makes them necessary. You two know what you are doing, if you get bit it is by your choice and you are fully informed. Live your life your way, that is the show credo. Now if you told you you “needed it for __________” I would tell you that you are full of shit, because you would be.

  7. @Chris I bolded it in this shows notes just to help you make your point. Very good one I might say.

  8. Jack – I know it’s always your opinion – I was just poking fun at your “venomous snake” comment – didn’t mean to offend, apologies if I did. I agree 100%, CC’s are by no means needed for anything – we just figure we’ll take advantage of cash back while such programs exist. Once gone, which I think they will be soon, we’ll cancel and use either cash or debit card.

    The big difference between how we use a CC and how my perception of how most other people use them is that we only purchase what we already have cash for, sitting in the bank. We have a set limit for groceries for example – we can pay greenbacks for the food, or use the CC and get our 3%. Makes sense to me to get the 3%.

  9. Jack,
    I financed my LASIK surgery last year. I paid for half of it up front and paid off the balance within 6 months of the procedure 0 intrest. I can say that is it the best thing that I’ve ever done for myself, totally worth it. When i went in for my consultation, they didn’t offer any discounts for paying in full up front, it was 3500, cut and dry. I take for granted now that I don’t have to fiddle with contacts or glasses. Best money i’ve ever spent on myself.

  10. @frank

    No qualms there! When 0% is really 0% as in this case you use someone else’s money for no cost. Many times 0% on like a car loan is just marketing BS but in your case that was a smart way to go. Additionally the 50% down makes me a lot more comfortable with the balance of the debt incurred.

  11. @Tim, dig this,

    “The big difference between how we use a venomous snake and how my perception of how most other people use them is….”

    he he he!

  12. Just started listening to this now, and I heard the opening jab at Windows 7. I take it you haven’t bothered giving it a shot yet? It’s incredibly good – I was one of the diehards sticking with WinXP when Vista came out, so I figured this would be “more of the same” – but I’m running it on both main machines in my house and it’s a thing of beauty.

    I think I still have an unused key from RC1, if you happen to need one let me know. It’s perfectly legit, they just stopped giving them out back in August (I think) so you couldn’t get a new one now.

  13. @Chris

    7 may be good it might suck but I won’t be putting it on any existing xp machines I do have one that came with vista and may very well upgrade that to 7. If Windows ME taught us anything about MS it is the best OS version follow the worse ones.

  14. I know little about computers but do know enough to state that there is a clear correlation between “venemous snake” and Windows ME …

  15. @Jack – XP is still a fine OS, we’re sticking with that at the office until we can really give 7 a workout and make sure it’s up to par. But for home use I’m totally sold on it.

    Plus, for anyone that’s recently bought a new computer, if you buy a machine with Vista loaded between June 26, 2009 and January 31, 2010 (read the fine print, Vista Basic and certain netbooks/nettops don’t apply!) most manufacturers have a free upgrade promotion for a Windows 7 disc. Even if it’s not to your taste, you at least have the option of Vista or 7.

    @timfromohio – You got that right man, I wouldn’t give WinME to my worst enemy. 😀

    But this is all rather off on a tangent from the original subject, so I’ll just wrap things up with “Computers are fun and if we didn’t have them we wouldn’t be able to hear Jack’s podcast!”

  16. Wow Jack, Thanks for doing that for me! I agree 100 percent with you about credit cards as I also have been in the same position as you with debt in the past. It is cancer and there is no better way to put it. I don’t know if my daughter will listen or not now, but if not, at some point she will know you and I are right!!! Hopefully it’s sooner rather than later.
    My parents never had credit cards and our family of 7 did just fine!!

  17. Zenni Optical has good fair quality glasses and they are cheap.

    Go Get your eyes checked, get your prescription, and go here.

    Buy yourself 4 pairs of glasses… Stash one at the BOL, one in the BOB, and 2 at home. You’ll be out less than 100 bucks.