Having fun on a budget can be hard.
Your friends invited you to go out this Friday and your kids are begging to see a movie on Saturday. But in the back of your mind you know it’s going to drain the bank account.
The good news is you don’t need to spend a ton of money at a restaurant or the movies to have a good time. With a little research and some effort, you can have a blast for cheap and even free.
If you’re on a budget, consider these options to have fun:
1. Use free or cheap public resources
Before renting a movie or subscribing to a streaming service, check out your local library. A lot of libraries have a solid selection of movies and TV shows available.
Take your group of friends or kids along and let them browse until they find something you can watch together. Go home and have a movie night!
If it’s sunny outside, visit your local parks and trails. A quick search on the internet should give you a couple of options. And if you have the right equipment, head to a free sports venue– a basketball court, volleyball net, or a disc golf course.
Before planning your weekend, research your community calendar. Most public events are cheap or free, such as:
Wine and beer tastings
Even if the event sells items, you don’t have to purchase them. Just attending can still be a lot of fun.
2. Use the supplies you’ve already purchased
You’d be surprised how much fun you can have with what you already own at home.
Most of the time having fun means having good conversations and finding something to do while talking. That can be as easy sitting around a table and coloring while discussing your usual topics.
If you’re looking for a more involved activity, search for board games. Dust off Risk or Monopoly, clear the dining room table and have a game night.
If you have a deck of cards, ask if anyone knows a good card game or look one up online. A popular option is golf.
Want to do something more active? Turn to the internet and explore Do-It-Yourself projects on YouTube or recipes on Pinterest.
Collaborate on a baking project, put some music on in the kitchen, and laugh your way to some delicious cookies.
3. Use the internet to have fun
There are tons of options for free or cheap fun on the internet.
Download Spotify for free music and create an epic playlist together. Explore the globe on Google Maps.
Gather around your biggest screen and watch the funniest YouTube videos you know. America’s Funniest Home Videos has a rich channel to explore. Alternatively, hunt down a hilarious podcast and listen together.
If any of your friends or family have a Netflix or Amazon Prime Account, ask if you can have access. You’ll never run out of things to watch.
You don’t even have to meet in person to have fun online. Find a free online game and play together remotely. Google “free online games” and find one you and your friends like. If you need a suggestion, check out Chess.com.
If you’re trying to get outdoors, try GeoCaching (Requires a smartphone). Geocaching is essentially a treasure hunt.
Other individuals in your community may have hidden random items, such as a lunchbox with a list you can add your name to. They record the location of these items on the GeoCache app. Now the public can hunt them and get exercise while having fun.
Having fun on the cheap is possible, but it takes research and effort. When we pay for fun, we’re largely paying for convenience. If you can go forego convenience, you can have fun and save money.
The real trick is converting your friends and family. But if you demonstrate how to have fun for free, they’ll soon join.
Take note of your public resources, what you already own, and explore the internet.
You’ll find something you love doing for free.
Varney: Dems Bending Over Backwards To Help The Wealthy, Not Working Class
If you think the Democrats care about the working man, think again, says Fox Business host Stuart Varney.
He says the Democratic elite are bending over backwards to try and help their wealthy donors at the expense of the working class.
Just look at the breakdown in the negotiations for a new stimulus bill. The Democrats aren’t clamoring for another round of $1200 stimulus checks, they’ve let that fall to the side. Who benefits from another $1200 check? The working class, of course. The wealthy sure don’t need it.
The sticking point, says Varney, is a tax deduction. Specifically the SALT deduction that allows state tax payments to be deducted from federal taxes. President Trump put in a $10,000 cap on the deduction as part of his Tax Cut and Jobs Act. That’s not an issue for ordinary working class Americans, but does affect wealthy individuals in high-tax states, many of which are Democrat states likes New York, New Jersey, California and Illinois.
Varney says the Democrats clinging to this tax deduction for the wealthy at the expense of the working class tells you everything you need to know about their priorities.
“The Democrats are moving heaven and earth to help the rich. You heard right. The Democrats are running to the assistance of the top 1%. This tells you a lot about political change. If you thought the Democrats were all about working people, think again.”
He says the far left may want to tax the rich, but the Democrat establishment is looking to protect them.
“Maybe the socialist wing wants to seize your wealth, but the establishment is desperate to bail out their wealthy supporters. Specifically, they want to bring back the deduction for state taxes. Yes, that’s the SALT issue. It’s the big sticking point in the fight over the new virus package.”
He says for wealthy Americans living in Democrat states, it was a “major league” deduction. Without it, they are paying higher federal taxes.
“It was a major league deduction. It was a big tax saving. But that’s the old days. Now, no tax deduction. And the wealth, especially in high-tax Democrat states, are complaining bitterly. They’re paying more Federal tax, not less.”
Establishment Democrats are scrambling to get SALT repealed, says Varney, showing their true colors to their constituents.
“Oh, there is desperation. New York Senator Chuck Schumer, he is demanding a SALT repeal. So is Speaker Pelosi. She’s from California. So is candidate Joe Biden. The establishment is desperate to avoid even higher taxes in already high tax Democrat states which would make things even worse.”
“If SALT were to be repealed, the establishment helps its rich donors. It will be a Democrat gift to the wealthy. The main beneficiaries will be one-percenters. Forget ideology. Political self interest is what rules the Democrat elites.”
Ron Paul: This Is The Biggest Financial Bubble In History
Dr. Ron Paul believes that we are in the biggest financial bubble in history. He also said that when it pops, it will be very violent.
In a recent interview with Kitco News, Paul covered a wide range of topics. Some of these topics include the Federal Reserve, interest rates, and the economy.
He was asked about the Federal Reserve’s dual mandate of full employment and inflation control. To this, Paul said the Fed shouldn’t even be in the business of worrying about either.
“They shouldn’t even be in the business of pretending that if they want a good, healthy economy, and they want as best the employment possible, and the most balanced pricing system, you have to get rid of the system. You can’t have this artificial system from the Federal Reserve,” he said.
Free Market Should Set Interest Rates
Paul said the free market should be the one setting interest rates. Additionally, when the Fed thinks it has control over things is when problems start.
“You have to have a market rate of interest, and you have to have a money supply that’s determined by the market rather than by the politicians, because we are seeing the results of many, many years of this, especially since 1971 with what is happening now, it’s the runaway spending, we can’t have the runaway spending, if we continue to do this, and the fact that they pretend that they can control things, every time they think they have control then there’s a major correction, which we are in the midst of.”
He said the big event was when the Fed realized last fall that the bubble was starting to pop. He also mentioned that it began doing everything it could to keep it going. This meant cutting rates to zero.
“The big event that turned this whole thing on was in the fall when it was realized that the financial bubble was collapsing and they have destroyed for many, many years the most important function of the market, in the money supply are the interest rates. So we destroyed the pricing structure and that’s why we have so many mistakes, malinvestment, too much debt, too much government, and it wouldn’t happen if you didn’t have a Federal Reserve system that thinks they can manage the economy through monetary manipulation.”
Gold and the Market
Paul said the Fed can print as much money as it wants, but ultimately gold is what underpins the markets.
“I remember when gold was legalized in the 70’s, everybody thought the gold price would soar up, but it had already gone up, but at the time, our Treasury Department and the IMF (International Monetary Fund) dumped a lot of gold just to try and punish the people who knew that gold was a haven. So there’s a lot of monetary and gold manipulations, but ultimately the markets are determined by metals, not by paper money.”
He said we are getting close to a “cataclysmic” end to the bubble. The unfortunate result is that a lot of people will be wiped out financially.
“We are coming desperately close to a cataclysmic end to the current monetary system. I happen to believe it’s the biggest financial bubble in the history of monetary policy for the whole world. And the correction is going to be very violent, and it’s already pretty bad. People are going to get a lot poorer.”
“The bills have to be paid, the economy is going to turn down, and a lot of people have already gotten a lot poorer, but it’s going to get a lot worse unless we wake up and return to some sound economic and monetary policies.”
Wall Street Veteran: This Is The Biggest Stock Market Bubble In History
We are in the midst of the biggest stock market bubble in market history, according to Andrew Parlin, the founder and CIO of investment advisory firm Washington Peak.
In a recent op-ed for the Financial Times, Parlin says he’s experiencing “déjà vu” as he outlines the parallels between the Japanese real estate bubble of the 1980’s and today’s tech-driven bubble.
As a young investor during the real estate craze in Japan, he met with an analyst who claimed the stocks of a midsized and heavily indebted railroad company should be worth 5 times to 10 times more, because they could convert some of their land holdings into a giant condominium complex.
“Never mind that the land was desolate and inaccessible. Nor that acquiring the necessary permit would take years. He produced elaborate financial models showing how the stock was actually worth five to 10 times its current value. My head spun,” said Parlin.
“Back then, anything with a whiff of exposure to real estate was at the centre of speculation. Now, the hottest sectors in America are nearly all disruptive technologies. Stocks with real, or perceived, exposure to the cloud, digital payments, electric vehicles, plant-based food, or anything at all to do with the stay-at-home economy have shot up meteorically.”
But Parlin says the value of many of these “disruptors” is as unrealistic as what he saw during the Japanese real estate bubble.
“Bubbles are formed around individual stocks and sectors. As the concentric circles of excess widen, more and more stocks are infected. Wildly exaggerated stock stories force a delinking between fundamental analysis and share prices.”
He points to Tesla as an example of this phenomenon.
“That is how a stock such as Tesla commands a market capitalisation of about $400bn, up from $80bn in March, and $40bn one year ago. Tesla’s rise then engulfs the entire electric vehicle market in a frenzy of speculation.”
Companies Approaching the Market Bubble
Parlin’s reliable metric for a market bubble is the price-to-sales ratio. He says the number of companies with sky-high price-to-sales ratios is approaching dot-com bubble territory.
“Today, according to Bloomberg data, 530 out of America’s 8,513 listed common stocks trade at more than 10 times sales. This is 6.2 percent of all common stocks… Only at the very top of the dotcom bubble, in March of 2000, can we find a larger percentage of stocks (6.6 percent) trading in excess of 10 times sales.”
“The point is that price-to-sales ratios in the stratosphere do not stay there, any more than a tulip bulb in 17th-century Holland was able to maintain a price of $100,000. This gets at the troubling thing about bubbles. They do not simply undergo smooth and endogenous shrinkage until they disappear. Instead, they continue to expand until they burst. This is why their bursting is more often than not shocking, spectacular and disorderly.”
He says he doesn’t know when the bubble will burst, but we are all a part of the biggest bubble in history.
“When and how this ends is impossible to say. But with the Fed pursuing thunderous asset purchases and getting ever softer on its 2 percent inflation target, the bubble is firmly on track to be one of biggest in stock market history.”
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