The headline “Personal Income Boosted by Stimulus” on June 26 caught my eye. The first story was carried by CNN Money and is now available from 287 news services. When I first saw the headline and read the story, I thought “What a Load of Manure”. Well not exactly, but I will not use the first word that came to mind.
Newspapers are going broke all over the country. They want to blame the Internet and online news availability. More and more, information is available within minutes from hundreds of sources online, on television, and on radio. Unfortunately, some stories submitted by PR firms, or reassurances from government party lines, are not news at all. It just makes it a bigger lie.
NEWS FLASH: A 1.4% increase in available income due to decreased tax withholdings, or increasing unemployment benefits, is still only 1.4%. Hello, that is $1.40 per $100 income. An increase to unemployment may help more than the original rate of unemployment, but still pays significantly less than the job and benefits paid.
Yes, I saw an increase in my direct deposit. The “BIG BOOST” to my income was about $23 per month. The last time I checked, that amount would not pay the subscription for the news source that published the story. I just hope at the end of the tax year that I don’t have to figure out how to come up with an extra $300 that I owe on taxes. I admit for a few months my disposable income rose. But that is an oxymoron if ever I heard one. “DISPOSABLE INCOME”, as if I would deliberately be putting it in black plastic bags out by the curb on trash day.
The same morons that wrote the original news story would have you believe that when I quit smoking I saved $250 per month. Sounds great, but I never spent $250 on tobacco products. I actually quit smoking in October and saved about $120 per month. I wasn’t able to save the money, and I used it to help pay for home heating during the winter.
The way the story was written, it makes me wonder how I was able to get by without that extra $23 per month. The increase to my disposable income was a direct result of being able to take advantage of seasonal changes and some cost cutting measures. During the mild spring temperatures, I saved nearly $300 per month on utilities by not having to pay extra to heat or cool my home. Now that temperatures near 100 degrees, I wonder whether it is worth the added expense to help stay cool during the summer. Perhaps it is better to save now for winter expenses. Like so many of us, I am running out of ways to actually cut expenses.