Executive Summary: The best solutions to America’s economic woes and political gridlock won’t be found in the nation’s capitol. We must return to our roots, where family, neighbors, church and community provided shelter from financial storms and health crises. The road to fiscal redemption begins at your doorstep.
There are all manner of proposals, schemes, social engineering programs and wishful thinking being weighed as possible government responses to the seemingly unsolvable financial problems our nation faces.
Our economy wobbles on the edge of a second recession.
Unemployment refuses to yield despite trillions of dollars of taxpayer-funded stimulus.
The words default and U.S. debt – once unthinkable in the same sentence – now harmonize with alarming regularity and require an Atlas-like effort to keep hoisting our nation’s debt ceiling higher and higher.
As for the government programs designed to safeguard the health and financial security of our senior citizens, they have been unmasked as Ponzi schemes so massive that Bernie Madoff’s multi-billion dollar Wall Street fraud is really but a drop in the bucket by comparison.
To whom do we turn to lead us out of this mess? The President? The leaders of the House and Senate?
Aren’t these, more or less, the very folks who got us into this financial pickle?
So why do so many people kid themselves by thinking these politicians are capable of navigating our way out of it?
There are, in fact, a group of elected leaders who by their words and deeds have shown us the path back to firm fiscal standing. Their names include Washington, Jefferson, and Franklin, and they, along with other Founding Founders, placed their stock in the rugged individualism and community-mindedness of the American citizen.
One of government’s primary roles, in the view of our Constitutional framers, was to provide for the common defense of its citizens – not their common comfort. That responsibility – to tend to those who cannot care for themselves or are temporarily down on their luck – was seen primarily as a family and community obligation.
As proud and free citizens we don’t need to wait for our elected leaders in order to mend our economy, eliminate deficits, buttress social insurance programs and reverse chronic unemployment.
The road back to American fiscal strength – and renewed exceptionalism – begins at our own doorstep.
First, we must get our own accounts in order; then we can turn our attentions to our immediate neighbors and communities.
In other words, fix it ourselves!
Start at home.
If each of us is not fiscally and physically fit, we can’t be effective citizen soldiers on the economic battlegrounds of our times.
What follows are five personal goals that every patriotic do-it-yourselfer can and should accomplish
Reaching these targets will strengthen your own finances and enrich your lifestyle. Likewise, you will be far less likely one day to require taxpayer-funded assistance of your own.
Perhaps most importantly, you’ll be well positioned to bypass the government bottleneck and provide direct and timely assistance to fellow citizens who really do deserve a hand…
1. Eliminate Personal Deficit Spending
We can set an example for our leaders by balancing our own family budgets – not raising our debt limits.
Just like the government, staying within a budget consists of cutting expenses, generating more income or a blend of both. No Constitutional Amendment is required.
2. Create Your Own “Social Security” Lockbox. Ditto Medicare Savings Account
Sure, it would be great if all those dollars you entrusted to Uncle Sam would boomerang back to you in your golden years as Social Security and Medicare benefits. But don’t count on it.
You need to create your own safe and secure long-term retirement and health benefit accounts – ones that won’t be subjected to the risks and volatility associated with stock-market savings and investing vehicles.
Keep this in mind: When the U.S. economy is in the tank, the stock market and your nest egg are typically dragged down with it. Wealth-building methods, such as those incorporated in the Bank on Yourself system, have provided predictable, non-stop growth for more than 160 years, come economic rain or shine.
3. Avoid Joining the Unemployment Rolls
Only one person can truly decide if you are employed or unemployed. You!
If you currently have a job, work each day as if you are still vying for the position. Give your employer 110%. Make yourself indispensable. Take every opportunity to prove your value and be a perpetual student – always adding marketable knowledge and skills to your résumé.
If you lose your job or are out of work already, then hire yourself.
Start small if need be – walking neighborhood dogs or clipping and selling grocery coupons for a percentage of the savings. Whatever it takes to begin bringing in income once again while researching, planning and executing a longer-term, self-employment solution.
America remains the land of opportunity. Seize it!
4. Get and Stay Healthy
If vanity and longevity aren’t incentive enough, perhaps patriotism will provide the extra motivation you require to get fit and stay that way for the rest of your life.
The longer you stay healthy the more you’ll enjoy your lifestyle and the greater your personal wealth will become. Nothing saps productivity and creativity as much as illness, not to mention its drain on your finances.
The healthier you are, the more financial options you’ll enjoy. And the less likely it is that you’ll ever require costly government-funded, government-regulated health care.
5. Create Jobs
Want to do your part to help America’s unemployed rebound? Then be so successful pursuing the first four goals above that you are in a position to generate work for others.
Perhaps your economizing will permit you to hire contractors to remodel your house; a bookkeeper to help you stay on budget; a part-time chef to prepare healthy meals; or a personal trainer to whip you into top form?
If you do start your own business – something that offers numerous rewards even for those who have secure full-time jobs – then be dedicated, inventive and efficient enough to grow your venture to the point that it requires one or more employees.
It isn’t a coincidence that one of the greatest philosophers of all time, Moses Maimonides, who lived in the 12th century, concluded that…
The very highest form of generosity one can offer a fellow citizen is to provide him/her with a meaningful job.
Generating a job for another transforms him/her from one who relies on the support of others for subsistence to one who generates income for you and pays his/her own way in society.
Your employee becomes someone who can help transfer the burdens of providing financial and social insurance off the back of our government and into the local community, where it belongs.
Know with certainty that each of these five goals is very achievable, without requiring advanced knowledge or special training. Thousands of users of the Bank on Yourself system – everyday citizens who decided to fix-it themselves – have fulfilled and exceeded these five goals.
You can do it, too.
Many step-by-step solutions are available for free. A great place to start is right here on our BankonYourself.com website. Our archives, found at www.bankonYourself.com/blog, are filled with insights and tips on how to become more financially self-reliant.
You’ll also be able to unlock the many proven techniques contained in our BankonYourselfNation.com subscription-based financial and lifestyle community. NATION is designed specifically for those self-reliant individuals who are ready to exert maximum control over their own finances and quality of life
Yes, there will always be the truly needy who cannot under any circumstances do for themselves. And that is what family, charities, churches, and neighbors are for, with government serving as a final safety net if all else fails.
Since our founding in 1776, we have always pulled together in times of need – through wars, the Great Depression, fires, floods, hurricanes and all manner of political turmoil.
At the moment, our economy is in crisis and our political leadership hogtied when it comes to remedying the situation.
Too many of our friends and neighbors have given up hope and misplaced their can-do attitude. (See: Turn Off the News and Ignore the Economic Naysayers: You Are Not a Statistic) The damage is not only economic, it is a malignancy on the soul of our country.
We can and must restore our national pride, self-reliance and optimism. Washington shouldn’t be counted on to do that for us. So we must do it ourselves – as is and always has been our American destiny.