If one more person tries to make some stupid comment about there being “too much coverage” of the credit crunch in the press right now, I’m going to lose it.
I’ve had the unlucky experience of meeting a number of nit wits recently who wear financial ignorance like some kind of comedic badge of honour. No, it’s not funny that you work hard all day, paying extortionate levels of tax and you haven’t bothered to read about even one of the numerous multi-million pound bail-outs which have been catered for with our money over the last few months.
I’m not one of those bitter people who is angry that our tax money has been spent in this way, I after all, have bothered to read about the enormity and the seriousness of the situation that we are facing.
Our economy is spiralling out of control. What I find most frightening is the fact that not even the financial experts (as in the people who make knowing about these things their living) can predict how we are going to stop this spiral, or where exactly it is going to end. Sorry, I take that back. They do give predictions, but I can guarantee that by next week, or even by tomorrow, these predictions will yet again change as fast as a WAG trades footballer boyfriends.
Maybe it’s not all bad though. Maybe we will all be able to finally go back to the basics. I read an article recently which described how for years during the boom (it feels weird talking about it like it has been and gone; when we were in it, it didn’t feel like a boom) it was impossible to get rid of allotments in the cities. Now, since the big CC, there is a waiting list for them. It seems people want to grow their own food now to save money. Who would have ever predicted this was going to happen only two years ago?
But, even if you are of the guise that money isn’t everything in life, the point is that, at the end of the day, everything in life boils down to economics, and that’s a lot bigger than just shopping and spending money at nice restaurants. (For anyone who hasn’t read it I would highly recommend ‘Freakonomics’ which illustrates this magnificently).
The credit crunch will, and for many already has, affect us all, and we will all see it in different ways. Whether it is in the form of redundancy, a lower interest rate on your savings or your favourite pick and mix store no longer trading, it will affect everyone personally at some stage.
The inevitable outcome for everyone is that they will need to be more prudent with their money and the regular (even once every couple of months is pretty regular) splurges we were all used to before will need to become a thing of the past. Just because we may not understand all of the terminology behind the credit crunch it doesn’t mean that we can just ignore its existence.
Just because something isn’t easy to read in the paper, it doesn’t therefore mean that we should all get bored and demand that something else is reported – go watch a soap if you want things to move on the minute they know the audience is getting a bit bored.
Maybe the reason it is so prevalent in the media is because the people who make it their business to research this every day, the journalists, can see that this might be kind of a big story. It is everyone’s responsibility to understand our economy and take care of their finances. We are in a mess at an individual finance level as well as a macro-economic level. It’s hard out there and life is bloody expensive, but to just bury your head in the sand and allow your finances to get totally out of control will only add to the country’s problems right now and you will not be doing yourself any favours in the long term.
Bet you wish you’d looked for the best ISA rate now, don’t you? Oh God, please don’t be sitting there scratching your head, wondering what on earth an ‘ISA’ is.