Weekend reads: ICYMI, the most popular MarketWatch articles of 2019 – MarketWatch

To celebrate the new year, here are some of the most popular MarketWatch articles of 2019. The one with the most readers by far was Catey Hills interview with a retired teacher who moved to Panama and believes it would be an act of insanity to stay in the U.S.

Dean Weymes quit his job at Amazon.com AMZN, +0.06%, and the companys human resources department found his reason difficult to believe.

Based on LinkedIns year-end emerging jobs list, this profession has had the most rapid hiring growth over the past five years and has an average annual salary of $140,000.

Every day there are warnings about the stock market, but this one about the next 20 years struck a chord with readers, who left more than 500 comments.

As part of a series of articles helping people decide where to live when they retire, Catey Hill listed three possible locations by the ocean for a man with modest income.

This teen figured out how to make good money by giving people what they wanted via social media but he was surprised how quickly it was pulled out from under him.

Nearly 1,000 readers left comments after reading this list of 16 money wasters that keep Americans from saving for retirement.

Heres how to do it.

Brett Arends interviewed Kristin Morrison, who started a very small and very successful business that led to an early retirement.

FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) is an easy concept to sell who wouldnt want to be financially independent at a young age? There are, of course, many approaches people have taken to achieve financial independence heres how one couple did it.

Quentin Fottrell MarketWatchs Moneyist helped many readers over the year. This is the most-read of all those and involves someone facing a life-changing decision.

Want more from MarketWatch? Check out our Personal Finance Daily or other newsletters, and get the latest news, personal finance and investing advice.

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Weekend reads: ICYMI, the most popular MarketWatch articles of 2019 - MarketWatch

Theres no one else to take care of us how women can, and should, achieve financial independence – Toronto Star

Bola Sokunbi, author of Clever Girl Finance: Ditch Debt, Save Money and Build Real Wealth (2019, John Wiley & Sons) grew up expecting to attend university, since her father had put her older brothers through school. However, the familys finances changed during her high school years when her father had to retire early. Luckily, her mother also worked while Sokunbi was growing up, so she funded her daughters university degree using her own retirement savings on the condition that Sokunbi promised to get good grades and work or apply for scholarships whenever possible.

It comes as no real surprise, then, that Sokunbi immersed herself in the world of personal finance to ensure that she could pay off her debts and start investing for the future. She runs a popular finance blog for women, http://www.clevergirlfinance.com, and is committed to helping women achieve comfort with their finances.

I talk to a lot of women every day and one theme that emerges is that they say they find money difficult or theyre not good with it, Sokunbi said. By writing this book I wanted to make the idea of finances approachable, relatable and fun and written from a womans perspective so women could identify with it.

Sokunbi talked with the Star about womens finances and personal finance issues.

Why did you target your blog and subsequently your book toward women?

This generation is different from those in the past where the societal standard dictated that men were the breadwinners. Today, we live longer than men and may be the sole heads of households and its not an option to be ignorant about finances anymore, because theres no one else to take care of us. This is an opportunity to combat all the things working against us.

Why does the financial industry do such a poor job serving women?

Because there arent enough women working in the industry. I read a statistic stating that more than 80 per cent of finance professionals are men and, when it comes to personal finance, the percentage is even higher. A 2009 study by the Boston Consulting Group found that women felt many of these men werent approachable and the women felt the men were talking down to them. Finding a feminine voice, angle and tone isnt as common.

What financial information arent women getting now? How can we fix the problem?

Personal finance specialists always assume everyone knows the basics about budgeting and stocks, even though these things arent taught in schools. The bulk of conversations about investing arent about mindset or self-discipline. We need to establish a foundation before moving on to advanced level discussions. We need to talk about the basics of establishing a financial plan. Education and information equal power. Personal finance skills can be learned, just like other life skills such as riding a bicycle. And you can make mistakes; if you fall off, you just get back on and practise until you no longer need training wheels.

Anyones army of dollars should speak loudly to investment personnel, no matter your gender. Are there questions women should be asking to ensure they are being treated equally?

If you choose to use a financial planner, be sure that what youre being sold or what is being presented to you is clear and explained in a simple way. Dont be afraid to ask questions. Also, do a bit of research first so your financial goals and objectives are laid out in advance. When youre presented with ideas and products, you can then make an informed decision about their relevance to your plans. You want to make sure that the planner is putting your best interests first.

Are there additional barriers or challenges for women of colour as they accumulate wealth?

As women of colour, we may be the first or second generation of our family to go to university, or we may be children of immigrants. Our socio-economic backgrounds dont necessarily provide us with financial guidance once we start earning more than our parents. Its important to educate ourselves and find likeminded people for support. Immerse yourself in books, podcasts and videos about finances and dont just keep what you have learned to yourself. Share it with your community and convey this knowledge to your children so they can do better themselves.

Whats the rule of thumb for women taking on student loan debt?

If youre considering university, get a sense of the salary youll earn upon graduation, based on your degree. Dont let your debt exceed your expected starting salary. Also, consider the cost of the same degree at various schools and consider what the degree will cost and what it will take to pay it off.

After graduation, you may need to move to a city that offers higher salaries so you can pay your debts more easily. Make sure you get a copy of your credit report to know what all your loans are. Determine the interest rate for each one and the different rules around each loan, including deferment options and the pros and cons of loan consolidation. Create a strategy for paying off your loans. The key is to pay more than the minimum monthly requirement as often as possible and be certain that the extra you pay is applied to the loans principle, not the interest.

Women generally earn less than men doing similar jobs. If I think I deserve a raise, how should I approach my boss?

Something women struggle with is doing negotiations and showcasing our work. Before making a move, list all of your accomplishments from the past six months.

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Talk to your boss about how youve been doing and the possibility for a raise, given your accomplishments. Ask what requirements youd need to meet to be in the best position to get a raise.

Its important to put yourself on your boss radar, especially if he or she supervises other employees, and you also want to prevent the company from making the assumption that youre okay where you are.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

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Theres no one else to take care of us how women can, and should, achieve financial independence - Toronto Star

THE AGE OF HYSTERIA – Concord Monitor

Published: 12/29/2019 6:01:47 AM

Modified: 12/29/2019 6:01:34 AM

The Bad Old Days by Jonathan Baird (Dec. 5) gives a good synopsis of anti-immigrant feelings and actions in the United States some 100 years ago. Those feelings, however, werent new to that era. With the beginning of the huge wave of immigrants at the end of the 19th century and continuing at least into the era described by Baird, Americans and the federal government did not want peoples from eastern and southern Europe, particularly, to enter this country.

Contrived reasons to exclude them were many and varied. They were dumb/stupid, dirty, lazy, politically dangerous, or lacked evidence of a job or financial independence. On the other hand, Scandinavians and, generally, Germans were acceptable because they were viewed as intelligent and industrious. Some of the undesirables were watched carefully. One was Emma Goldman, noted by Baird.

Goldman had become a naturalized citizen in 1887 through marriage to an immigrant who himself was a naturalized citizen. They divorced. By 1909, he was dead.

In that year, a federal judge revoked his citizenship as fraudulent. How does the government revoke citizenship from a corpse and why? How was a legal fiction. Why was so that the government could expel Goldman. Since her citizenship depended on his and now his was no more, neither was Goldmans. Finally in 1919 Goldman was deported to Russia.

To her dismay, she found that the workers paradise didnt exist. She moved to Toronto, Canada where she died in 1941.

Anarchists, of course, were on the watch list and many were swept up in the Red Raids. Most members of the Anarchist Party in the United States were Italian. Luigi Galleani was the titular head of the Anarchist Party here. He never became a citizen. During his time here, 1901-1919, he was a headache to the government. Finally, in 1919, he was deported to Italy. Since he wasnt a citizen, what took so long? No corpse was required.

Theres a connection of sorts between Galleani and the Anarchist Party and my family. One is through his daughter, Ilia Galleani. She was a doctor in Boston and delivered me. She also divested me of my tonsils.

The other is through Luigi and the Party. My father, Emilio Coda, was a Party member and friends with Luigi. In fact, in 1912, Luigi relocated from Vermont to Lynn, Massachusetts, my hometown. Evidence indicates that after Luigis deportation, my father considered himself the party chieftain. At least one other man felt he was and the battle was joined. Its interesting that there was a Party and that it had leaders, given that anarchism is opposed to government and structure of any sort.

While authorities questioned my father on a few occasions, he was not arrested. Ive never known why. He didnt hide his anarchist beliefs.

Anarchist Party actions didnt achieve positive results. It did provide fodder to the canons of those who moved to limit or deny immigration and to expel the unliked.

With respect to both my father and mother, they were active in the support of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, two men who happened to be Anarchists and were arrested and ultimately convicted of murdering a Braintree, Massachusetts, shoe company paymaster the controversial Sacco & Vanzetti case that whether or not they were guilty, was rife with judicial error. Many people, worldwide, felt they were victims of anti-immigrant hysteria: they were Italian, they were Anarchists, they must be guilty.

The Boston Public Library archives holds letters between my father and Vanzetti written over the course of the seven years that the men were imprisoned until executed.

Jonathan Bairds main thrust . . . how bad things can get when hysteria commands public policy, is right on point. Back then, it was driven by public hysteria and used by government to bad ends. That is not much different from today. We need to be vigilant, lest bad things continue to happen to good people.

(Arnold Coda lives in Hopkinton.)

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THE AGE OF HYSTERIA - Concord Monitor

The Best of Us: ProPublica Illinois 2019 – ProPublica

ProPublica Illinois is a nonprofit newsroom that investigates abuses of power. Sign up to get weekly updates about our work.

Well, that was a year. Im not feeling particularly reflective about 2019, reader, or able to offer you a pretty bow to tie it all up. But I am going to make a list for you. You could say its our ProPublica Illinois Best of 2019 list, but this type of thing always raises the question: Best of what?

Our most popular stories? The ones with the most impact? Sort of both? Since we first started this newsletter in the fall of 2017, I promised it would be personal but not too personal. In light of that commitment, Im calling this list ProPublica Illinois at Its Best, or The Best of Us. In our second(ish) year of existence, heres a selection of our work, mostly organized chronologically, that, as a whole, shows who we are as a newsroom, what we do and why we do it. Ready?

First up, video gambling. In January, we published the first part of an ongoing investigation into how the legalization of video gambling has transformed Illinois. This story revealed how video gambling not only failed to help pull the state out of its financial tailspin, as was promised, but actually made it worse. It exemplifies the hard-hitting accountability reporting we do, and it also highlights how we collaborate within our newsroom, combining the strengths of data, news applications and engagement journalism. You can read subsequent parts of this project here.

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Our newsletter is written by a ProPublica Illinois reporter every week

This story is both big-picture and detailed, contextual and relevant. It examines the troubling inner workings of Chicago politics and how, for decades, that structure has partly relied on favor-trading to keep the mayor in control of the City Council and aldermen reigning over their wards. Also, reporter Mick Dumke hosted an excellent night of live-tweeting from our @ProPublicaIL account on the night of Chicagos mayoral election, including several on-point takes, soundtracks and a pet cat or two.

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In 2018, we published a series of stories about allegations of abuse and lax supervision of immigrant children and teens held at Chicago-area shelters, many of which are run by the nonprofit Heartland Human Care Services. In March 2019, we reported that, after public scrutiny and staffing issues, Heartland was closing four of these facilities. This was one of a number of stories we also published in Spanish this year.

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Our investigation into the failures of the states child welfare agency to adequately serve Spanish-speaking children in its care raises questions such as this one by an Illinois lawmaker: How in 2019 do we not have enough Spanish-speaking caseworkers? This piece centers on the narratives of three different families across more than 40 years who were affected by the states failure to follow a consent decree requiring it to place children in its care whose parents primarily speak Spanish in foster homes where that language is spoken. To report this story, we also had to go to court to fight for our right to publish it, as a Cook County judge initially ruled that we couldnt publish certain information involving one of the families but later loosened these unusual restrictions, calling her previous order overbroad. In response to our reporting, the state agency pledged to hire more bilingual workers and better track foster care placements, among other reforms.

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Its likely youve heard of or have already read this story, though perhaps you didnt know we broke it. It was our most-read article of 2019. Heres how the scheme worked: First, parents turned over guardianship of their college-bound teenagers to a friend or relative. At 18, the student declared financial independence to qualify for tuition aid and scholarships. The story drew national attention and prompted the state and federal governments to take action to try to close that loophole. Additionally, we wrote a piece that explained how we reported this story, including how it first came to us via a tip.

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In February 2018, we first reported on how Chicago ticket debt sends black motorists into bankruptcy. We revealed how the city also relied on ticketing as a tool to raise revenue. We published a database of more than 28 million parking and vehicle compliance tickets, and we used that data to fuel a news application, The Ticket Trap, which allows Chicagoans to learn more about ticketing in their wards.

We wrote about how we collaborated with WBEZ, created an event toolkit modeled after our event in March, and made sure that, through all our reporting, the stories of people most affected by this issue were front and center. The issue became a spotlight in this years mayoral race, and in September 2019 more than 30 published pieces of journalism later state and local impact happened. Theres a lot about this series that showcases the best of us, but perhaps this ethos describes it best: We stick with our stories until we see results. Speaking of which, on Tuesday we published an update about how many people applied for the citys ticket debt amnesty program. Hint: It is not that many.

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In ProPublica Illinois early days, I wrote to you with a promise to get out of Chicago and learn about our state. On one trip, I sat down at the bar of a restaurant in southern Illinois and heard something repeated to me that I couldnt shake. If you read the story, youll see what I mean. That instance led to a deep dive into one communitys history as a sundown town a pervasive history that plagues hundreds of cities, towns and suburbs across the state, whether they know it or not and ends in a present moment that some readers described as hopeful.

Here are more reactions from readers, including answers to various questions such as: What good do you bring the world by digging up skeletons? Answer: Not all skeletons of the past are buried.

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Its rare that journalism can spark change as quickly as this story did. Yet, within 24 hours of publishing this investigation, a sweeping, detailed examination of how Illinois schools use isolated timeout, which is when children are placed in separate often small, sometimes locked spaces, state officials issued an emergency ban on the use of locked, isolated seclusion. Our reporting with the Chicago Tribune found that in thousands of incidents, students had been put in seclusion for disobedience, refusing to do schoolwork and other reasons not related to safety in violation of state law.

Since then, weve heard from hundreds of people across Illinois, and around the country, with their own stories, information and concerns to share. We continue to publish stories in this series, including our most recent look into the use, and misuse, of physical restraint of students in school. More to come.

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On that note, heres a follow-up on our seclusion story, first published as a newsletter a few weeks ago, that I particularly admire. In this piece, our reporters Jodi S. Cohen and Lakeidra Chavis and Jennifer Smith Richards from the Tribune reflected on what it meant to them to report the story and listen to readers reactions. Heres an excerpt responding to comments about the upsetting nature of childrens experiences:

When reading their words and hearing their voices over the past year, we, too, were moved. We were disturbed. We cried.

Illinois current law mandated that school employees document seclusion incidents, but there was no requirement that anyone read them. The state didnt collect data to know how often it was being used.

Thats why we took this on. Isnt it better to know?

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That last line sticks with me: Isnt it better to know? As journalists, this is what keeps us going. Its why we do what we do. In some ways, the work of journalism can be described as the work of knowing; a process that can be painful, joyful and many other words in between. We hope, through this newsletter, to keep sharing that process with you, too.

Thanks for reading. Well see you in 2020.

Logan JaffeProPublica Illinois

P.S. Hi, this is Louise, ProPublica Illinois editor in chief and Logans boss. If youre made it this far, you have a good sense, I hope, of what strong, local investigative journalism can accomplish to make our city and state a better place to live. But to keep doing this kind of work, we need your help. ProPublica Illinois is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization; we run on your support. So, as we close out 2019, please consider making a contribution. You can do it right here. Wishing you all the best in the new year.

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The Best of Us: ProPublica Illinois 2019 - ProPublica

Songwriter and Detroit native Allee Willis dies at 72 – FOX 2 Detroit

(FOX 2) - Allee Willis, a songwriter whose work included the Broadway musical "The Color Purple" as well as the theme song from the TV show "Friends" and Earth, Wind & Fire's "September," has died. She was 72.

Her publicist told The New York Times the cause of death was a cardiac event.

She leaves behind countless works, but when she appeared on FOX 2 earlier this year she said the hit song 'September' put her on the map and gave her financial independence.

Willis was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2018. She won a Grammy more than 30 years ago and had been nominated for Tony and Emmy awards.

Willis grew up in Detroit on the sounds of Motown.

"Allee was a big songwriter," says Thomas McDonough. "She couldn't sing, and she couldn't could not do a musical note but that woman could write."

Like so many around the globe, music producer, TV host and record label owner Thomas McDonough woke up Christmas Day to learn that Allee, a native Detroiter who went to Mumford High School had passed away.

She leaves behind countless works, but when she appeared on FOX 2 earlier this year she said the hit song "September" put her on the map and gave her financial independence.

"By the end of the year that started with the food stamps, I had sold over 10 million records," she told us.

Thomas says for Willis, her heart was always in Detroit even when she relocated to California - and part of her love for Detroit was Motown.

"I was obsessed with Motown as a kid, which I think a lot of kids living in Detroit were," she told us on The Nine.

Those who knew Willis say her connection to Motown was through a large number of musicians who worked there.

"She wrote with all the Motown writers way back when, but she didn't get credit for all the songs because she was co-writing on them," McDonough says.

And although Willis leaves behind a massive amount of work, Thomas says she will also be remembered for having a kind heart.

"The woman was very giving; she would give you the shirt off her back."

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Songwriter and Detroit native Allee Willis dies at 72 - FOX 2 Detroit

Iconic Womens Empowerment Songs Of The 2010s – Forbes

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 19: A female marcher holds a sign that says, "The future is Female" in front ... [+] of Trump International Hotel during the Woman's March in the borough of Manhattan in NY. (Photo by Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images)

Over the last decade, various womens issues and movements have surged to national attention. Music, which can be a beautiful form of resistance, has been part of this fight too.

The Me Too movement against sexual harassment and assault, price discrimination and unequal pay are just a few current concerns. Since the first Womens Marchwhich happened around the world one day after President Trumps inauguration in 2017there has been a growing coalition for womens and reproductive rights.

For every year of the 2010s, there is an iconic womens empowerment song below. While each has beauty in its protest, each song is marked by its own concerns and resistance, from questioning beauty ideals to the tones of religion.

HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 09: Sara Bareilles performs live on stage at the Hollywood Palladium. ... [+] (Photo by Joe Kohen/Getty Images)

2010: King of Anything by Sara Bareilles isnt exactly about women being queens, but its about getting away from people, especially men, who are demeaning and consider themselves superior for no good reason. There is freedom in getting away from people who treat you like this because it allows you to make your own choices, be who you want to be and stop hurting inside from being bottled up. She also calls out men who expect women to quickly agree with them as well as obediently follow through plans, singing she wont ride off into a delusional sunset.

LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 28: Singer Beyonc Knowles performs onstage during the 2011 MTV Video ... [+] Music Awards. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

2011: Run the World (Girls) by Beyonc says its philosophy plain and simple in the name: girls run the world. Her accompanying visual includes stunning, intricate scenes of dancing, fighting and detailed outfits embellished with fragmented metals. Beyonc also sings about womens financial independence and determination, singing, How we're smart enough to make these millions, strong enough to bare the children, then get back to business. With the textured feel of this song, sifting between the military drums and slower tempo, this was a natural anthem.

HOLLYWOOD, FL - JULY 23: Alicia Keys performs in Hollywood, Florida. (Photo by John Parra/Getty ... [+] Images)

2012: Girl on Fire by Alicia Keys is about relentlessness and power, describing girls as so powerful theyre on fire, so powerful theyre a flame. Shes just a girl, and shes on fire, Alicia sings, not only celebrating girls but changing what it means to be a girl. In other words, to be just a girl is something extremely powerful by itself. Then, the song details the power of her fire: even in the lonely times, shes still a flame. Similarly, the music video shows a flame, embodied by a mother, who struggles to pay bills and manage her kids scattered toys but is also joyful with her kids, dancing together and giving good night kisses.

NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 03: Beyonc performs during the Pepsi Super Bowl XLVII Halftime Show at ... [+] Mercedes-Benz Superdome on in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images)

2013: ***Flawless by Beyonc (again!) featuring Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is a mix of song and speech. On this track, Beyonc is proud of her beauty but she digs into what it means to be a feminist and want equality for women. The song smoothly flows from Beyonc singing to audio from a speech by Adichie where she challenges the difference between what society tells boys and girls and then defines feminism: We say to girls,You can have ambition, but not too much. You should aim to be successful, but not too successful,otherwise you would threaten the man. Because I am female, I am expected to aspire to marriage, she continues. Feminist: a person who believes in the social, politicaland economic equality of the sexes.

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 03: Singer/songwriter Colbie Callait performs at The GRAMMY Museum in ... [+] Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mark Sullivan/WireImage)

2014: Try by Colbie Callait may suggest there is something to try, but the song claims otherwise. She sings about the pressures women endure, like maintaining a slim shape, looking picture perfect and being sexy in order to be liked. Instead, of bending until you break or changing a single thing, Colbie sings over and over, you dont have to try. Following the message of the song, the music video features several women in their natural stateswithout makeup and with their natural hair, even if that means no hair at alland their reactions to the music. The song and video suggest the ways women try to change in order to be liked limit freedom and happiness. Try is about self-love, not only around others, but in moments alone when confronting yourself.

WEST HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 24: Singer SayGrace performs at Guitar Center Music ... [+] Foundation's 2019 fundraiser. (Photo by Michael Tullberg/Getty Images)

2015: You Dont Own Me by SayGrace (Grace) featuring G-Eazy is ultimately about being free, independent and whole person. To be that as a woman includes directly telling men they do not own you or any other women. The dominant theme of this song, freedom, is described in a few ways: financial freedom, being able to say what you want and being able to do what you want. This version is actually a cover of the 1963 song recorded by Lesley Gore. Though the G-Eazy verses are, of course, are new additions, this song still remains relevant over 50 years after it was first released.

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - DECEMBER 11: Lizzo performs onstage during Q102's Jingle Ball 2019. ... [+] (Photo by Lisa Lake/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)

2016: Good As Hell by Lizzo is a vibe, and the song digs into feeling good about yourself and shares the instructions. Not only does Lizzo sing about releasing inhibitions, but she sings about personally letting people go and leaving in order to be free, especially a guy. The video is mainly set in a hair salon where women are enjoying each others company through cheering and dance. The video goes a step further and empowers Black women by celebrating Black hair and beauty in various colors, curl patterns and shapes. Whether or not you sing this song with someone in mind, if you do a hair toss and check your nails, youll probably feel good as hell.

BILBAO, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 04: Hailee Steinfeld performs on stage at the MTV EMAs 2018 in Bilbao, ... [+] Spain. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

2017: Most Girls by Hailee Steinfeld plays on generalizations made about (most) girls. While the song celebrates individuality across girls and that no two are the same, Hailee sings she wants to be exactly like most girls. This is not only is a clap back at generalizations made about being like most girls or doing something like a girl, but it celebrates girls being unstoppable and fierce in any and whichever ways they choose despite struggles.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 17: Ariana Grande performs on stage during her "Sweetener World Tour" at ... [+] The O2 Arena in London, England. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for AG)

2018: God is a woman by Ariana Grande also has its message in the name. Beyond the bold statement that challenges the idea that God is a man, her music video is rich with symbols and images celebrating the divinity and bodies of women while also replacing men with women in classic works of art, like Michelangelos infamous Creation of Adam. Throughout the video, for example, womens open legs are shown as a symbol of power and creation of light and life. For example, Ariana depicts Mother Nature this way while she is soothing storms. Beyond the divinity and power of women, God is a woman explores justice for women, especially when Ariana breaks the glass ceiling inside a Pantheon-looking building with a gavel in her video.

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 22: Megan Thee Stallion performs at Meek Mill & Future in Concert at The ... [+] Cellairis Amphitheatre at Lakewood in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage)

2019: Hot Girl Summer by Megan Thee Stallion with Nicki Minaj and Ty Dolla $ign is not just about the summer. Instead, its a year-round anthem. In an interview with the Root, Megan explains to have a hot girl summer you must to be unapologetically yourself, support your friends and not be bothered by what others say. In other words, a hot girl summer means youre a boss: accepting of yourself, including your body, choices and sexuality, as well as your people. Hot Girl Summer is about being so carefree and self-loving you make it summer all year long.

Surely some of these themes will continue into the next decade of musicfinancial freedom, self-love, empowered sexuality and equality on a broader scale. However, it will be interesting to see which new themes appear in response to events, cultural phenomenons and gender discrimination.

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Iconic Womens Empowerment Songs Of The 2010s - Forbes

SSS reaching out to farmers, fishermen – INQUIRER.net

State-run pension fund Social Security System (SSS) has inked a partnership agreement with Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC) to bring social security coverage to Filipino farmers and fisherfolk.

SSS president Aurora Ignacio and PCIC president Jovy Bernabe signed a memorandum of understanding earlier this month for the promotion of SSS programs and the provision of social security protection to members of the agricultural workforce who are the most vulnerable to calamities, both natural and man-made.

The program aims to increase the number of farmers and fisherfolk who are covered with SSS, which provides social security protection in times of sickness, maternity, disability, unemployment, retirement, funeral and death.

Most farmers and fisherfolk are situated in far-flung areas where certain government benefits are inaccessible. As such, they often cling to informal lenders like loan sharks during times of need, wherein rates could go as high as 20 percent a month.

SSS and PCIC share the same objective of providing adequate safety nets to one of the most vulnerable sectors of society, especially to our farmers and fisherfolk in the provinces. Hence, we are tapping PCICs regional network to cover more potential members with our pension fund, Ignacio said.

SSS is hopeful that with PCIC, it would be able to go into untapped areas where PCIC has established its presence, making it easier to encourage agriculture workers to develop financial independence.

PCIC provides insurance protection to farmers and fisherfolk in times of calamities, plant diseases and pest infestation.

Based on its 2018 annual report, about 2.7 million farmers nationwide or a quarter of the countrys entire agricultural workforce were able to avail themselves of insurance products and programs, and were able to establish partnerships with at least 3,000 government agencies, local government units, cooperatives, and microfinance and lending institutions.

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SSS reaching out to farmers, fishermen - INQUIRER.net

How Have Your Finances Changed Between 2009 and 2019? – Lifehacker

In 2009, I was 27 years old and a year into my first full-time job with benefits. I was working as an executive assistant at a think tank in Washington, DC, and had ended up in this job after spending the past five years telemarketing, temping, going to grad school to get a MFA in theater, coming out of grad school no longer wanting to work in the theater, and asking a professor whom I trusted how I could get a job that paid at least $50,000 a year.

With your skills, youd make a great executive assistant, he told meso I went to one more temp agency, told them I wanted a temp-to-perm executive assistant job that paid at least $50K, aced the typing tests, and got myself hired.

(It helped that all of this happened before we were fully into the swing of the Great Recession. Timing really is everything.)

Making $50K a year felt like an enormous amount of money compared to telemarketing and temping wages. I had no undergrad or grad school debtmade it through both on scholarships and stipendsso once I paid off the $5,000 my parents loaned me to cover the cost of the semester I spent teaching Shakespeare at the University of Hyderabad, I bought myself enough clothes that I could go two full weeks without having to repeat an outfit and then began focusing on saving as much money as possible.

I was already hugely interested in personal finance and knew the path I was supposed to be following: get out of debt, build an emergency fund, start saving for retirement. In 2009, I was debt-free and managed to save $10,000, which felt like a huge accomplishment and also like it was barely a drop in the bucket. How would I ever save enough to retire, let alone retire early like all those books in the library claimed I could?

I mean, I didnt want to be an executive assistant forever.

I ended up working as an executive assistant for four years. After that, I quit my job to move to Los Angeles and try to make it as an indie musician. I wasnt completely terrible at the musician thingI was playing gigs and geek conventions nearly every weekbut by the end of that year I had spent all my savings and was $14,000 in credit card debt, so I began Mechanical Turking to bring in a little extra cash.

Amazon Mechanical Turk, if youre not familiar, is a site where you can sign up to do short, repetitive tasks (taking surveys, identifying objects, confirming whether a review is positive or negative) for pennies. Back then there were a handful of Mechanical Turk clients offering better-paying gigs, including the content writing company CrowdSource, which has since rebranded asOneSpace. I started Turking for CrowdSource in late 2012, got invited to join up as a freelance writer and editor, and quickly became the sites fourth-highest earner (though I would assume that record no longer stands).

I also finished recording an albumlike, a professionally recorded and engineered album, funded by Kickstarter money, credit cards, and my Roth IRA. (Pulling the cash out of that Roth is one of the biggest money mistakes I made in the past decade, let me tell you.) When I met with the sound engineer to go over the final mixes, he said You know, youre a good musician. But youre a great writer. Have you ever thought about

Yeah, I told him. Ive thought about it.

From there it was pitching and writing and pitching and writing; spending five years at The Billfold and getting my byline everywhere from The Penny Hoarder to Popular Science; publishing two novels; becoming a regular contributor at Lifehacker and Bankrate and Haven Life and Vox.

This year, I grossed over six figures as a freelancer. I dont have the final numbers yet because Im expecting a few more checks before December 31, but my 2019 earnings currently include $119,831.57 in freelancing income and $204.30 in publishing royalties. I also more than doubled my net worth this yearfrom $84,700.47 to $174,809.19after moving to a low cost-of-living area and pursuing what you might call an aggressive saving and investing strategy. The FIRE calculators suggest that if I keep this up, I could retire in 2025.

I dont know what your finances were like ten years ago, but its worth taking some time to think about where youve been, how much youve earned, how much debt youve paid off, and so on. Remind yourself of your biggest accomplishments; ask yourself about your biggest regrets. Be honest about any advantages that may have helped you along the way; when I ended up $14K in credit card debt, for example, my parents essentially sat me down and said We are going to give you an interest-free loan and you are going to pay us back.

Whats interesting about doing this kind of reflection (at least in my case) is realizing that my core financial values and interestsfrugality, financial independence, making and publishing my own creative projectshavent really changed since 2009. The biggest difference, over the past ten years, is that I both worked and lucked my way into a career in which I could grow my income exponentially. I know well enough to treat my current earnings rate as temporary, which is one of the reasons why I dont really trust those FIRE calculators (even though they are a lot of fun to play with). 2019 may have been a six-figure year, but in 2012 my total income was $23,878.

How have your finances changed, over the past ten years? Have your financial values changed as well, or do you feel like your values have stayed consistent and youre simply living on more/less money than you were a decade ago? If you were to tell a story like the one I just told you, what would it includeand how might it shape what you hope to do with your finances in the next decade?

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How Have Your Finances Changed Between 2009 and 2019? - Lifehacker

WHAT TO EXPECT IN 2020 SERIES / Mayor’s View: Duluth, on the rise, learning from its growing pains – Duluth News Tribune

In April I laid out bold priorities for streets, housing, jobs, and energy. With your support and the hard work of our city team, Im proud that we delivered fully on each of our commitments.

On streets, we secured a fully dedicated, half-percent sales tax, and in 2020 we will repair 17 miles of road compared to two and a half in 2019. Thanks to everyone who attended one of our 10 City Hall in the City events to review our comprehensive streets plan and meet our new transportation planner.

We prioritized affordable housing and are investing in new policies and innovative approaches. We launched the Mayors Task Force on Affordable Housing, and this dynamic group meets monthly to develop specific ideas for increasing housing affordability. We changed our Unified Development Code to make accessory dwellings and tiny homes possible. We created a dedicated housing-developer position alongside the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, formed a housing team, and announced Rebuild Duluth, a program that will provide up to 19 infill lots across the city, free of charge, to add to our stock of affordable housing. To date, more than 30 parties are interested in the lots, and have extended our submission date to accommodate requests for additional time.

On jobs, we built partnerships with the Duluth Building Trades and other community allies to meet worker shortages in key sectors and smash persistent disparities across race and gender. Our CareerForce center identified employer workforce champions committed to expanding their hiring pools and leading the way connecting good jobs with those who need them. We instituted community-benefit policies to spur local job creation and supported apprenticeship and training programs that help workers gain careers and financial independence.

For many families, holding a good job requires safe and convenient child care, and we changed zoning to allow child-care facilities to be closer to where parents work. The result: several local businesses are actively building child-care facilities to meet the needs of their employees. We also need more child-care slots overall and revamped our 1200 Fund to provide for start-up dollars to help meet this demand.

On energy, we laid down a bold commitment of 100% renewable energy, and we continue to be a regional and national leader for decreasing greenhouse gases. My Energy Plan Commission is now fully activated, and we are in the final stages of hiring a sustainability officer to lead our resiliency efforts in the city and in the community.

Its been an extraordinary year, for sure, but not without challenges. Superior Street construction continues to mess with the heart of downtown. Storms closed Park Point and damaged the Lakewalk again. And a gale-force blizzard delivered 35% of our annual snowfall in five days.

One of the things I love most about Duluth is that we face our hardships and focus on solutions. We adapt our physical growth and expansions to account for climate change and increase our resiliency. We shop local to support our entrepreneurs and small businesses which invest in us. And in the coming weeks well revisit snowplow routing, adapting systems to more fully support the hard work of our staff and providing clearer and faster communication on plowing progress.

Cities on the rise have growing pains, but they learn from them. This year shows what a city looks like when it invests in itself and believes that better is possible.

You have placed great trust in me and my team and have given us a second term, for which I am tremendously grateful. From our family to yours, we wish you a bright season of warmth, joy, and love.

Emily Larson is mayor of Duluth. She wrote this exclusively for the News Tribune at the invitation of the Opinion page.


The News Tribune Opinion page again this year asked community leaders and area experts to gaze into their crystal balls and to share what 2020 might be bringing us.

THURSDAY, DEC. 26: City of Duluth

Friday, Dec. 27: St. Louis County

Saturday, Dec. 28: Duluth school district

Sunday, Dec. 29: Congress

Monday, Dec. 30: Minnesota Legislature

Tuesday, Dec. 31: The Economy

Wednesday, Jan. 1: Tourism

Thursday, Jan. 2: Business

Friday, Jan. 3: Downtown Duluth

Continued here:

WHAT TO EXPECT IN 2020 SERIES / Mayor's View: Duluth, on the rise, learning from its growing pains - Duluth News Tribune

More Money in 2020: Analysts Recommend 3 Simple Resolutions to Increase Net Worth in Uncertain Times – CCN.com

When it comes to achieving financial independence, most agree that taking small, measured steps is far more effective than overwhelming giant leaps. Instead of making vague resolution like save more, experts recommend getting into new habits that will bring you closer to your overall financial goals in 2020.

Money expert, best-selling author, radio host and CEO of Ramsey Solutions Dave Ramsey told CCN that putting pen to paper is the key to increasing your wealth in 2020. He recommends purposefully writing out a budget to stay on track with your finances.

He says:

When you give every dollar an assignment before the month begins and you live according to the numbers you write down, you will get the stress off of your back. It will feel like you got a raise. Youre money is out of control when its not in control. It sounds basic, but if you dont have a clear written plan for your money, then youre just hoping.

Hes not alone, a host of finance experts recommend purposeful budgeting to keep track of spending. Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren advocates for the 50/30/20 budget rule, calling for after tax income to be divided as follows: 50% on needs, 30% on wants and 20% for saving.

Paying off debt, especially high-interest debt, should be a primary focus when it comes to budgeting in 2020. Last year U.S. consumers who did their Christmas shopping on borrowed money racked up $1,230 in debt. Most of those people said they planned to pay it off via minimum payments, making their splurge all the more expensive.

Rate Rush CEO Harry Maugans told CCN that shoring up your investment portfolios is more important than ever this year:

Max out your Roth IRA and diversify your investments! The stock market is at an all time high, but it cant stay there forever, so missing out on a little upside now is worth avoiding a big drop when things inevitably reverse course. Ensure your portfolio has a healthy balance of market exposure, and alternative or non-stock investments.

Brian Davis, the co-founder of SparkRental.com had a similar perspective, saying that diversified investing is the key to building wealth. He recommends using an automated service to make stock-picking easier for those unfamiliar with the stock market.

Everyone with a net worth under $500,000 use a robo-advisor to help them invest. Only around 55% of Americans own any stocks at all, and failing to invest in equities is a surefire way to not build wealth. The Americans who dont own any stocks are often intimidated by the process of choosing equities to invest in, but in todays world they can delegate that to AI algorithms.Many robo-advisors are free; I personally use Charles Schwabs robo-advisor service, which is free if you have at least $5,000 invested. Regardless of which you use, the important point is simply to open an account and start automating your savings and investments.

2020 could be a tricky year to pick winning stocks as uncertainty looms over the U.S. stock market. Still, most analysts are expecting to see relatively smooth waters ahead which bodes well for well-diversified portfolios.

Sandy Yong, the author of The Money Master, says 2020 is the year to know your worth and ask for a pay increase.

Negotiate a raise with your boss. Since its the time to have an annual performance review, its a good opportunity to share the highlights of what you have accomplished the past year and what value you bring to the company. You should also do some research online to view comparable salaries within your industry and with your job title so that you are informed about the standard compensation ranges. You can look up statistics through Glassdoor, Linkedin or Payscale.

Research from Columbia Business School suggests that asking for a specific sum of money is more effective than rounding. A precise number implies that youve done your research and are well-informed about your own worth.

Yongs tip isnt just for those at the top of the food-chain either. Nick Bunker, an economist at Indeed.com says strength in the U.S. labor market has given lower-paid workers more bargaining power.

This article was edited by Sam Bourgi.

Last modified: December 27, 2019 14:51 UTC

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More Money in 2020: Analysts Recommend 3 Simple Resolutions to Increase Net Worth in Uncertain Times - CCN.com

How I retired early: ‘At 41, I’m selling my three properties and will live off the stock market while I write a movie script’ – Telegraph.co.uk

This is the fifth in a Telegraph Money serieslooking at how people achieved a dream they never thought possible: retiring early.

No more early morning alarms, and relaxing on a tropical beach are images that most come to mind when we think about retirement. Not for Alan Donegan, who effectively retired and became financially independent at the age of 40.

Donegan, a true self-starter who set up his own businesses, has poured most of his money into property, and stocks and shares.

Now a regular speaker for the Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) movement, quitting the rat race has given him the freedom to enact a lifelong ambition: write a movie script to pitch to big film producers....

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How I retired early: 'At 41, I'm selling my three properties and will live off the stock market while I write a movie script' - Telegraph.co.uk

Avoid These Common Investing Mistakes – Investment U

Financial Literacy

By Mable Buchanan

Originally posted December 28, 2019 on Wealthy Retirement

Theres one thing many of us have in common this holiday season, no matter where or what we celebrate

We like to gather with family and friends and give gifts to our loved ones.

For this reason, you may be familiar with the carol The Twelve Days of Christmas.

But just like the generous true love in that famous carol, you may have found yourself overspending this holiday season or committing a host of other financial errors.

For this reason, Wealthy Retirement continues to celebrate the holidays with an inventory of common financial missteps to check for in your own habits.

If any of these common investing mistakes sound familiar, dont worry. Theres always time to adjust your strategy, and you may see a difference sooner than you think.

12. Youre not getting the biggest bang for your buck. Failing to take advantage of undervalued stocks can limit your returns by putting a cap on your growth potential.

Then, like a band that needs 12 drummers to make a discernible beat, your portfolio may have a harder time hitting its crescendo.

Instead, consider adopting a value investing technique. Look for opportunities to buy at a discount when companies with upcoming catalysts and strong fundamentals are trading at low price-to-earnings (P/E) and price-to-book (P/B) values.

The current P/E and P/B averages for the Nasdaq are 21.05 and 3.23, respectively. Finding competitive ratios can help you recognize value. But remember, if a company doesnt have strong fundamentals, its low valuation is likely merited.

11. You follow the crowd. Eleven pied pipers piping might be enough prompting to lead you into a bad decision, like panic-selling when a stock takes a momentary downturn.

Instead, try a contrarian strategy. Buying when the market looks bleakest is the strategy that earned Warren Buffett his fame (and legendary returns).

And on the flip side, remember that sometimes investor glee can be a bad omen.

Take it from Michael Burry of The Big Short fame shorting the subprime mortgage market in 2007 earned him $100 million.

10. Youve put off trying options trading. If youve been looking for an opportunity to boost your income (beyond Perpetual Dividend Raisers and blue chip bonds), there are multiple strategies that can limit your risk while maximizing upside.

Consider trading Long-Term Equity Anticipation Securities (LEAPS), writing covered calls, selling puts or creating a bull spread.

Options trading may have your portfolio profits a-leaping.

9. Youve left the finances to the men. Theres still a gender gap when it comes to financial education, but investing is far from a boys club today.

In fact, more than one-tenth of fund managers are female, and mixed-gender portfolio management teams perform better than all-male ones.

If youve been putting off taking the reins of your finances, consider visiting a fiduciary financial advisor or browsing Wealthy Retirements Financial Literacy section.

Regardless of gender, financial independence can provide enough peace of mind to set you (and eight of your closest friends) dancing.

8. Youre investing only for price appreciation. As Marc has written before, employing a dividend reinvesting strategy yields dramatic results.

The following chart says it all: An initial $1,000 investment in 1960 would have netted you almost $2.5 million today with dividends reinvested, but less than $500,000 without dividends.

To really milk the most from your investments, turn to Dividend Aristocrats.

7. Youre always worried about the next black swan event. Keep long-term investing wisdom in mind: Follow the trend lines, not the headlines.

The market returns nearly 10% on average. While bear markets sell the most papers, staying in the market and managing investing anxiety will ensure that you maximize your return.

Hang in there and take the stress out of the decision. The Oxford Club recommends setting trailing stops at 25% to avoid emotional trading while still protecting your principal.

Like our seven swans a-swimming, your portfolio is most likely to stay afloat if you give the market time to recover from momentary lows.

6. Youve left your nest egg vulnerable to taxes. Consider opening a tax-advantaged account, like a 401(k), IRA, Roth or 529, depending on your investing goals.

Then, remember that each investing vehicle carries different tax implications. Master limited partnerships, for example, are already tax-advantaged, and dividends carry a lower tax rate than the national average.

Save space in your tax-advantaged account for the investments that need it most. Itll help you lay a healthy nest egg.

5. You hold too many precious metals. Precious metals (even gold rings) shouldnt represent more than 5% of your total assets. You can also do better than secure but paltry payouts from government bonds in a low interest rate environment.

Remember, Alexander Greens Gone Fishin Portfolio recommends holding 30% of your core portfolio in U.S. stocks and 30% in foreign stocks.

It also recommends holding 10% each in high-grade bonds, high-yield bonds and inflation-adjusted Treasurys.

The final 5% are allocated to real estate investment trusts (REITs). These, like precious metals, provide balance to the portfolio. Do not count on them for income or appreciation.

4. You try to time the market. Consider this: Investors who time the market underperform those who stay invested for the long haul.

This is because some of the markets biggest leaps come right after a downturn, when all of the calling birds have cut their losses and sold.

In fact, market timing nearly cuts your yield in half.

According to a study conducted by Dalbar, investing in the S&P from 1995 to 2014 would have earned you a 9.85% annual return but even missing 10 of the markets best (and most unexpected) days would have dropped your return down to 5.1%.

Not to mention, market timing makes you a target for short-term capital gains taxes.

3. Youve overlooked international stocks. If so, its high time you added some French hens to your portfolio.

Contributing Editor Aaron Task recently wrote that investors should consider broad indexes, like the MSCI World Index, or exchange-traded funds (ETFs), like the Vanguard FTSE Emerging Markets Index ETF (NYSE: VWO).

These global portfolios are currently competitive with our record U.S. bull market. Whats more, some individual countries especially those in emerging markets that will see dramatic growth over the coming years are currently undervalued.

2. Youre worried about a dovish Fed. A declining interest rate doesnt mean that a recession is near even when the yield curve is inverted, as we saw earlier this year.

Even if we do see inflation in the coming years as a result of the Feds current policy, you can dovetail a two-step inflation management plan.

1. Youve put off saving for retirement. Theres no time like the present to plant the seed. Open a tax-advantaged account if youre still working, or take advantage of catch-up contributions if you are 65 or older.

For help judging where you are in your planning, try our free five-minute Retirement Readiness Calculator.

Work toward a future where you can sit pretty in the shade of a retirement you planted yourself. Make sure you establish an income stream independent from Social Security before you retire.

Get Back on the Nice List

Each of us is guilty of one (or more) of these investing faux pas. As the new year approaches, consider ways you can replace any financial bad habits in 2020.

Build a retirement where you have enough income to give your true love whatever you want.

Good investing,


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Avoid These Common Investing Mistakes - Investment U

Disability Life In Ten Years: Fears And Hopes For 2030 – Forbes


As we start a new decade, we can see hopeful signs of improvement for people with disabilities. At the same time, its hard not to notice more negative trends evidence that in some ways we may be heading in the wrong direction on disability issues and culture.

What will life be like for disabled people ten years from now? Will todays worrying trends turn into frightening realities? Or will we finally achieve some of the access, equality, and opportunity breakthroughs we have been working on for decades?

Lets first look at three ways things could end up much worse for disabled people in 2030, given current trends:

1. Division

The disability community could become even more bitterly divided than it is already by race, gender, and sexual orientation, between haves and have-nots, among conflicting political identities, and between groups of people with different kinds of disabilities.

Disability is an incredibly diverse set of experiences, encompassing physical, cognitive, sensory, and emotional impairments and hundreds of specific diagnoses. And disability itself intersects with all other flavors of human experience and social identity. Despite this, the overall trend over the last 30 years has been for the disability community to come together as much as possible. Cooperation has contributed to historic advances, and these advances have in turn helped reinforce the value of unity.

Yet even now, we see that external threats and zero-sum, circle the wagons thinking threaten to overwhelm the drive for solidarity, shared experience, and collective action. It would be tragic for the disability community, (such as it is), to once again shatter into competing and mutually resentful camps tragic, but entirely possible.

2. The sinister side of innovation

Medical and technological advances could increasingly make disability seem like something people can choose to fix, and should further stigmatizing people with more persistent, ongoing disabilities.

Many people, including many with disabilities, view innovations in medicine, technology, and wellness as hopeful opportunities to cure and essentially conquer disability itself. Its a major component of technological utopianism, the belief that ever-advancing technology holds the key to fixing our most difficult social problems. And its true that technology has done a lot to liberate disabled people, through better wheelchairs and prosthetics, relatively cheap adaptive products, and of course computers and the internet. Medicine, too, is largely responsible for vastly improved everyday health and longevity for people with disabilities that once cut lives short.

Unfortunately, the impressive contributions of technology also fuels more problematic attitudes and sinister goals. People who believe that any affliction or disability can be fixed with the right tool, treatment, or lifestyle tend to develop a judgmental view of disabled people generally. And its not just about treatment. Already we can see an alarming interest in eliminating disabled people entirely from society, through prenatal screening, a renewed interest in eugenics, and an ever more permissive and sympathetic approach to assisted suicide. These threats may seem far-fetched and abstract now, but in ten years, how will society regard disabled people whose continued existence doesnt seem to belong in a world where every problem has a shiny new solution?

3. Back to institutions

Nursing homes, institutions and other controlled care facilities of various kinds could again be widely promoted and used as the solution to disabled peoples needs.

A large portion of the story of disabled people in the last 20 years has been the effort, on several fronts, to move disability care and services away from nursing homes, institutions, and other types of centralized facilities. Instead, we have moved towards disabled people being able to live in their own homes, on their own terms, with whatever services and support they need provided individually, in the community, and as much as possible under their own control. Disability policy has come a long way on this, benefitting people with physical disabilities, including older people with age-related impairments, people with developmental or intellectual disabilities, and people with mental health diagnoses, among others. The fairly obvious personal preference for greater independence, and the relative cost-effectiveness of these models can make continued progress seem inevitable.

However, it seems that there is literally no belief or practice of the past so awful that it cant be revived. Against all expectations of just a few years ago, there is a renewed interest in defending and even expanding disability service models that emphasize institutionalization, control, protection, and segregation. Traditional nursing homes still enjoy at best lukewarm acceptance. But innovators are hard at work coming up with exciting new communities and assisted living campus programs that are little more than high-end institutions with the same segregation and day to day control of disabled peoples lives that contributed to outrages like Willowbrook, which helped launch the movement against institutions in the first place. Straightforward advocacy for a wholesale return to institutions is becoming more common and accepted.

Maybe its just a fleeting fashion a nostalgic flirtation with old ways of doing things. But it could easily become a real trend, perhaps in response to underfunding, perceived unpredictability, and occasional failures of more individualized models like home care. Plus, misunderstood and fabricated financial pressures, and the fear of bad things happening always threatens to overwhelm hopes and ambitions for independence. Will most disabled people live independently in 2030? Or, will we be back inside closed facilities, wondering how we got here again?

Now that we have reviewed some realistic fears, lets look at three entirely feasible hopes for how life could actually be much better for people with disabilities by 2030:

1. Health insurance for everyone

There will no longer be any such thing as eligibility for complete health care, and long term services and supports for disabled people. It will be automatic for everyone.

Whether this means Medicare For All or some other hybrid model, the key is not just affordability, but stability. Today, people with disabilities have to worry constantly about sudden, even accidental loss of health insurance. Many of us rely on health insurance not just for standard health care, but also for adaptive equipment and home care. As a result, the constant need to maintain fragile eligibility factors into every major decision we make, including whether to marry, and whether and how much we can work if we have the opportunity.

Taking health insurance off the table, and fully covering home care for all who need it, would liberate disabled people even more than the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. It would once and for all make unwilling placement in facilities impossible, and fulfill the true promise of independent living.

2. End of the poverty trap

Disabled people will be able to work, earn money, and save much more than they can now without fear of losing support benefits.

There are many factors that influence whether or not any particular disabled person is working for pay. As already noted, maintaining steady health insurance is both essential and complicated. The same is true for other financial benefits like Social Security, food stamps, and housing subsidies, not to mention any support services people with particular disabilities need to maintain safety and independence.

Eliminating any financial downside to working, or working more, would be a huge step in the right direction for disabled people, regardless of our ability and opportunity to work at any given time. Figuring out how to do this isnt difficult in the technical, policy sense. Whether or not the political will exists to do it will go a long way towards deciding how life with disabilities will be in 2030.

3. Accessibility is done

Physical and communication barriers in workplaces, businesses, and transportation will be almost unheard of.

Maybe it really will just take longer than we thought before the promise of the ADA is finally realized in full. Maybe the legal and practical tools are already in place, and we will reach some sort of final accomplishment by 2030 of full accessibility largely through time and the natural process of repairing and replacing the infrastructure. Or maybe we will ramp up the effort, (so to speak), with some combination of stronger mandates, tighter enforcement, and targeted funding.

Will we simply coast towards this final elimination of practical barriers to full liberation, equality, and mobility for disabled people? Or will it require something more? And can we do it in another ten years or less?


These two lists were informally brainstormed, not carefully surveyed and sorted. Ask any disabled person and they might produce completely different predictions. However, these negative and positive forecasts do accurately reflect the pessimism and optimism that exist side-by-side among people with disabilities.

Its also interesting that all of the predictions on the darkest timeline list are social threats, while the optimistic hopes are all about concrete policy. It could just as easily be the reverse. After all, the disability community faces dozens of policy threats too, while disability culture is arguably more vibrant and collaborative than ever before.

Stil, policy advancement alongside social stagnation or decline would be consistent with the disability communitys history. Our legal and policy victories have always tended to run a few laps ahead of our progress on social attitudes and beliefs about disabled people. Big systemic improvements have often been followed by backlash something we may be seeing right now, and not just with the disability community.

What if both lists come true by 2030? What if the disability wins strong material victories, but loses cohesion, community in effect, its soul]? What if portions of the disability community gain power, freedom, and respect, while we sacrifice the rest of us to rejection, shame, and confinement?

Of course, there are infinite possible futures for all of us. But the disability community has unique opportunities to shape the world it will inhabit in 2030. We just have to be clear about what we want, and what we are and arent willing to do to get it. Now is a good time to think about it, and seriously.

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Disability Life In Ten Years: Fears And Hopes For 2030 - Forbes

What this man regrets about going from $2.26 to $1 million in five years – MarketWatch

In five years, Grant Sabatier went from having just a few bucks in his bank account to more than $1 million and he did it through side hustles, sacrifice and investing. But if he had to do it all over again, he said he probably wouldnt have done it quite the same way.

He made many trade-offs, and a few mistakes, like making money my God and chasing the next thing, no matter what, he admitted.

See: This FIRE couple wants to help create more black millionaires

The young millionaire, who blogs at MillennialMoney.com and is the author of Financial Freedom, accomplished financial independence by making small goals for himself first, shooting to save $1,000, then $2,000, then $4,000. As he reached his goals, hed double them. We usually focus on the million-dollar goal or retiring early, and while it is important to set goals, dont let those goals distract you from taking the next step, he said. Starting small and consistently doubling his figures made the goal accessible, mentally and physically. If you are completely in debt and you dont have anything saved, just save your first $1,000, and see how it makes you feel, he said. Youll feel better than you thought you would.

But there needs to be balance, something he did not account for on his path to $1 million. That means enjoying life, and that looks differently for everyone. Stripping yourself of experiences and items that are meaningful can backfire. Sabatier said he had to detox after five years of working 100-hour weeks and traveling, for example.

Hitting a financial goal should be less about quantitative reasons, like having $1 million in an investment portfolio, and more about qualitative reasons, like leaving a job you hate or paying for an annual family trip. Its about looking at your life. Do you feel like youre growing? Do you feel like youre in a place you like and you have friends you like? Do you like your life? Sabatier said. If the answer to that question is no, then the first place you need to look is your money.

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What this man regrets about going from $2.26 to $1 million in five years - MarketWatch

17 habits of self-made millionaires who retired early – Business Insider

It takes a lot of diligence and dedication to retire early as a self-made millionaire.

Some have done it as young as 28, while others achieve financial independence in their 50s. Either way, early retirement isn't a feat everyone can manage.

As the FIRE (financial independence, retire early) movement has grown, Business Insider has spoken with many early retirees. They tend to share some common habits that helped them get to where they are today and maintain their financial independence.

Early retirees typically begin on the same path: assessing their financial state, cutting back on expenses, and diligently tracking their progress and spending habits. Once retired, they tend to spend even less and often move to areas with a lower cost of living, focusing on experiences and living a life they love filled with hobbies and travel.

Here are 17 habits of self-made millionaires who retired early.

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17 habits of self-made millionaires who retired early - Business Insider

Man shares how he saved 570k and retired at the age of 24 – Metro.co.uk

Mike, who retired at the age of 24, and his wife Alyse (Picture: Mike Rosehart / SWNS)

Mike Rosehart is just 27 years old but hes already been retired for three years, having quit work at the grand old age of 24 once he had saved up 578,132.

Yep, get ready to feel like a financial failure.

Mike is another proponent of the FIRE Financial Independence Retire Early movement, which has previously helped a mum and dad to save millions in the space of eight years.

The former IT business analyst says that theres no big secret: he just saved aggressively, lived frugally, and bought his first home at the age of 19 instead of renting.

Mike also believes that anyone and everyone can achieve financial independence and stop needing to work with a little financial wizardry hes even taken in three mentees to teach them his saving skills.

Mike said: The secret to retiring early is: spend less, earn more and maximize the returns on the difference.

The hard part is executing it. Most of us cant resist the Starbucks, the trip abroad or the new cellphone. Delayed gratification is the secret to FIRE.

Okay. Delayed gratification. Write that on your hand and look at it the next time you fancy a sweet treat or a jazzy jumper on the way home from work.

Mike hit upon the idea of retiring early when he was studying at the Ivey Business School in Ontario, Canada, in 2010.

He came across Early Retirement Extreme, a book about becoming financially independent on a median salary by Danish astrophysicist Jacob Lund Fisker.

He said: I was in my first year at university and I was working on a project about the psychology of happiness.

I went deep into a wormhole on the internet and I came across Jacob Lund Fisker. He started the spark for me. His thesis was that anyone can retire in five years.

I thought: Hey, Im 17, Im young and eager. I realised that what makes you happy is freedom and the ability to do what you want in your life.

Mikes then-girlfriend, now wife, Alyse, found this new approach to spending tough at first, as many of us would.

But Mike kept reminding her that those little spends could add up and prevent the pair from fulfilling their long-term goals.

Alyse and I have been together since we were 16. I wouldnt say shes a crazy spender but she likes her Starbucks, Mike said.

She wanted to have kids young so I explained that if we were able to retire early we could be there for our kids. I told her we just had to cut our spending in half. It took me over a year to get her on board.

Every time she bought Starbucks, I said: That cost us two more days away from our kids.

Before you go thinking well, its easy to save a load of money if you have rich parents and dont have to rent, Mike is quick to say that he didnt grow up with wealth.

He was raised by a single mother on the poverty line and received scholarships to go to university. When he embarked on the FIRE plan he was working at coffee and doughnut shop Tim Hortons, earning slightly above minimum wage.

That meant making sacrifices and living below his means to save for the future.

He explains: I saved aggressively. In my second year of university, I rented a bedroom for 200 when the market rent would have been 315.

It was 7ft by 8.5ft but it was perfect for me. I just needed a place to sleep. Then I got a tiny apartment with my girlfriend for just 346 a month.

We even shared the internet with the neighbours and gave them 3-a-month. I cycled everywhere instead of getting a vehicle.

I found a bike that someone was giving away on the Craigslist of Canada.

Scrimping on rent allowed Mike to buy a home at the age of 19, putting down a deposit on a 115,626 cottage in London, Ontario (the one in Canada, not Englands capital).

Once the home was his, it was time to rent part of it out.

It was a tiny little cottage, the cheapest house I could find in London [Ontario], he said. We put down 22,515 half of that was money we had saved and half of it was our student line of credit.

We rented every room in it and so it was earning money for us. We had four other roommates.

The guy in our basement apartment was paying our mortgage. We graduated debt-free and with money in the bank.

When it came to getting married, Mike and Alyse made sure to keep costs down, spending around 2,890 on the wedding and using points they had gained on credit cards to go to Brazil for the honeymoon, staying with a friend so they didnt have to spend more on accommodation.

After graduating, Mike took on a job in consulting that paid 31,950, while Alyse worked as a graphic designer, making 20,157 a year. Thats not a load of money, but the couple were determined to make the most of it.

They began to use nearly all of Mikes salary to buy up properties and start renting them out, living on slightly less than half of Alyses saving then putting anything left over straight in savings.

Over the course of three years, they were able to buy 10 properties.

In 2016 the couple welcomed their first child, Emma, and one year later, in February 2017, Mike handed in his notice, having sold 11 properties and saved 578,132 the 25 times his yearly living expenses that FIRE recommends saving.

Mike said: I knew I needed 368,925 to retire and I had, in equity of my property, just under 578,132.

I went into my bosss office and he told me that my job would be there when I came back in six months time.

He thought I was having a quarter-life crisis.

In 2019 the couple had a second child, Arielle.

Mike admits that despite being a dad-of-two, he still had to find ways to fill the time left behind by retiring by 24. He started gaming at first, then decided to create a group in the area for other people who want to follow the FIRE system. They now do a monthly meetup.

While hes no longer in employment, Mike does still make money. He describes property as a passion and so buys houses, redesigns and redecorates them, then sells them on.

Thats what generates income by accident, he explains. I made 34,610 this year without even trying. If you chase your hobbies, youll probably make more money.

He also spreads the message of FIRE on his YouTube channel and has made his own mentorship program with four men who live in his rental properties.

The family still live a good life and their monthly outgoings are around 1,750 a month.

Theyre going to Florida in January and plan to go to Disney World after that but will make sure to hunt for deals when it comes to travel.

Are you an expert saver who fancies sharing their wisdom with the world? Or do you have any budgeting tips and tricks we should know? Get in touch by emailing MetroLifestyleTeam@Metro.co.uk.

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Man shares how he saved 570k and retired at the age of 24 - Metro.co.uk

Heres how community lending could help refugees find their feet – The European Sting

This article is brought to you thanks to the collaboration ofThe European Stingwith theWorld Economic Forum.

Author: Rya G. Kuewor, Executive Director, RIO

Entrepreneurship is often proposed as the ideal way for refugees to achieve financial independence; while others say savings and lending services is the key. The ideal solution may, in fact, be a blend of those two approaches working in tandem.

Apart from political and policy complications from certain refugee host nations, geographical restrictions, or the lack of adequate infrastructure, one major roadblock to helping refugees become economically independent is the dependency on aid, especially in the form of refugee camps, which incorporate services that meet refugee needs and are usually funded by large organizations and governments.

Aid and the refugee camp structure is not a sustainable method of financial inclusion or integration. It was meant as a short-term solution until refugees could return to their countries of origin. Refugee and displacement issues are not getting better; they are on the rise, and more innovative ways will be needed to cater for many of them as the process of receiving aid from donor organizations and governments is not the most suitable method.

Imagine a setting where aid that would originally have been spread across a refugee camp would be dedicated solely to the refugees who are children, elderly people, or those in need of medical attention in short, refugees who are unable to work for tangible reasons. It would mean saving funds to be used to help such refugees in other settings.

The question now would be, how do we create a refugee community beyond aid one that uses the remaining population of refugees who are well and willing to work?

In several situations, when we hear about refugees, the assumption is that they are naturally dependent because they have no skills. It is important to recall that refugees are people who had lives, jobs, and responsibilities before they became displaced. Thus, creating a refugee community beyond aid is not a reinvention of the wheel, as the solution has been implemented either in independent situations, in non-refugee settings, or on a much smaller scale.

To arrive at a place where this method is successful on a wider scale, simple assessments are necessary. We know from history and statistics that only a small percentage of refugees will return to their countries.

Kivas success with no-interest funds for refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDP).

Image: Kiva

As a rule, not everyone who is able to work wants to do so. Not everyone will become an entrepreneur, and not everyone will work well with money on the condition of starting a business. In light of this, pre-programme assessments are important for successful applications. The assessments may include:

Orientations to enable the creation of proper familiarity between supervisors, the host community, and projects.

Grouping, which involves helping participants to settle into peer groups in which they feel comfortable. This is important because certain communities within refugee settings do not work well together.

Idea-networking within the separate groups (taking market analysis of needs into account).

Direct discussions on implementation with the refugees to ensure that ownership by the participants is installed and reiterated where necessary.

And self-reflection exercises to ground the participants into their individual or group decisions. The grouping is important for accountability amongst each other.

The Windmill Refugee Loan Program, a character-based community lending programme that requires no collateral, is one such programme that has already had some success.

In countries where refugees are permanent or long-term residents, and where they have the right to work and own properties, for example, the blend of enterprise and access to low or no-interest funds would be appropriate as a more sustainable way to achieve financial independence.

Refugees who, by default, have come to be financially dependent, are feasible and tested candidates for this sort of trust and character-based funding because they seldom have collateral to submit for funding.

Mohammed Yunus and the crisis in Venezuela

Professor Mohammed Yunus and his Grameen Bank have a process to help people out of (extreme) poverty, which is also more effective than individual entrepreneurship or business training and self-funding.

Recently, due to the crash of the Venezuelan economy, 2.3 million Venezuelans 7% of the population according to UN estimates, have fled the country; most of them to neighbouring Colombia. What would the economic independence solutions be for these migrants who very well need to be fed, housed, and otherwise cared for, especially considering an estimated 4 million Venezuelans may live in Colombia by 2021?

The need for innovation and a different sort of thinking in this field of integration and economic development has become jarringly apparent. The interrelation between the 6.3 million Syrian refugees, the 2.4 million South Sudanese refugees, and the 2.3 million Venezuelan migrants, for example, is the fact that they are people who possess useful skills and need to be economically integrated.

As of 2017, the Global Trends Report from the UN refugee agency, the UNHCR, recorded an estimated 70.8 million forcibly displaced people, telling us that our solutions need to be able to reach more people faster. The graph below sheds more light on the number of displaced people from 2009 to 2018.

UNHCR Global Trends Report, 2018

Image: UNHCR

Implementing the fusion of micro-credit and business in applicable refugee and migrant settings would remove the burden of funding from refugee and migrant-focused organizations like the UNHCR and the International Organization for Migration, as well as governments.

The present go-to methods of camps, skills training, and small-scale donor funding for small numbers of refugees, or migrant initiatives for long-term or permanent residents, are no longer the most effective because of the terrible increase in displaced people around the world.

This new approach has already been piloted by the likes of the Grameen Bank, RIO (Refugee Integration Organisation), Kiva, and the Windmill Micro-Lending company. By exponentially implementing this, we would not be reinventing the wheel we would simply be scaling up an already successful solution.

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Heres how community lending could help refugees find their feet - The European Sting

These 5 Factors Will Tell You How Much You Really Need to Retire – The Motley Fool

If you search the internet looking for how much cash you need to retire, you'll find estimates ranging from $1 millionto $10 million. That's about as helpful as a mechanical pencil with no lead, particularly if your retirement savings are currently well short of seven figures.

A definitive, realistic savings target for retirement is the cornerstone of your long-term savings plan. Without it, you're flying blind. So grab some lead for that pencil and let's figure out what your magic number is.

Image source: Getty Images.

As a first step, you should understand a concept called the 4% rule. Financial experts say that in retirement you can safely withdraw about 4% of your savings each year. If you have $1 million in your retirement plans,you can live off $40,000 annually. At that rate, your risk of running dry is very low. In later years, you can adjust that figure up for inflation.

The 4% rule is not an exact science. It doesn't account for volatility in the market or your unique financial situation. But it is useful to make ballpark estimates. Know that the numbers will be starting points for retirement planning, and will require adjustment as your finances evolve.

Before you pull out your calculator, think about the lifestyle that you want in retirement. There is an early retirement movement called FIRE, or Financial Independence Retire Early. Proponents of FIRE save high percentages of their incomes so they can retire before reaching 50. There is a caveat, though, and it involves lifestyle. Successful FIRE households live very frugally, which allows them to stretch $1 million in savings out for 40 or 50 years.

If that's your retirement outlook, awesome. You might consider moving to a city with a low cost of living, such as El Paso, Texas. According to a Move.org study, monthly living expenses in El Paso are just under $1,200. That means you could get by on less than $20,000 a year in income, assuming you have no debt. Using the 4% rule -- $20,000 divided by 4% -- you can translate that into total retirement savings of $500,000.And if you qualify for Social Security benefits, you'd need to save up even less.

But maybe you don't want to live out your days in El Paso, eating a brown bag lunchand walking around the park for fun. In that case, use your current lifestyle as a benchmark. Add up your living expenses for a year, and then make some adjustments based on your ideal retirement lifestyle. Will you drive less because you're not going to work? Gas expenses go down. Will you travel more? Vacation expenses go up. Don't forget to include income taxesplus any costs currently covered by your employer. Healthcare costs deserve their own discussion, so we'll talk about those below.

Once you have your annual expense total, divide it by 4% to find your ballpark retirement savings target. If your annual number is $75,000, for example, you'd need roughly $1.875 million to support your lifestyle for 30 years. That assumes no Social Security income.

You can account for Social Security by estimating your annual benefit by making a my Social Security account and subtracting your estimated benefit amount from $75,000. Then divide the result by 4% again to get your savings number. Say your Social Security benefit will be $12,000 annually. Your savings then need to support annual living expenses of $63,000, which brings your target savings goal down to $1.575 million.

Want to take a guess at what you might spend on healthcare costs in retirement? Here's a hint: It will be way more than what you spend on healthcare today. Fidelity estimated that a 65-year-old couple retiring in 2019 will spend $285,000 on medical costs in retirement. And consulting firmMilliman expects those expenses to be $369,000.

Before you disregard those figures as ridiculous, consider that a private room in a nursing home sets you back about $8,500 a month. And the cost of a full-time home health aide can be upwards of $4,000 monthly. One health setback can quickly turn into a pretty major financial setback.

Plan for healthcare costs by adding $250,000 to $350,000 to your target retirement number.

Debt repayments can skew your retirement planning because they're temporary. When we used the 4% rule above, we assumed the $75,000 in expenses would be necessary for the rest of your life. But that's not the case if $6,000 of that $75,000 is for debt payments. Once you pay off those debts, that expense goes away.

If you do have credit card balances, car payments, or personal loans, pay those off before you're done working. Same goes for the mortgage if you can swing it. Then recalculate your living expenses again, and the picture will look much brighter.

Your number crunching may reveal that you can live exactly until age 87. But consider your family and what you'd like to leave for them. At a minimum, plan on covering your own funeral expenses. But you could also think about things like college funds for the grandkids or ongoing care for a relative with special needs.

You could bequeath your home or other property to your loved ones for those purposes. Life insurance might be an option, too, if the costs aren't prohibitive. Or you could simply work an extra few years and save more. If you like the last option, increase your target retirement savings number accordingly.

Knowing roughly how much savings you need to retire is the first and most important step of retirement planning. Your next move is to ratchet up your savings, which may feel like you're running a marathon. But just keeping putting one foot in front of the other, and you'll be amazed how much distance you can cover.

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These 5 Factors Will Tell You How Much You Really Need to Retire - The Motley Fool

Handling the Finances for a Senior with Dementia – i Advance Senior Care

In fact, the inability to handle finances is often one of the first signs that a someone has the disease. He or she might have trouble balancing a check book or might pay bills more than once or not at all. Someone with dementia might give away money or start hoarding it at the other extreme. Dementia leaves individuals open to financial risk and abuse, so it is important to recognize these signs.

For people with dementia, money can lose its meaning, so they may become careless with it, lose it, or give it away. Financial transactions can prove problematic, to say the least. Adults with dementia may not be able to identify coins correctly, remember pin numbers at an ATM, use checks, understand how credit cards work, or pay bills and loan payments on time.

Caregivers need to think about these kinds of issues as soon as they are recognizable. In some cases, the caregiver is able to help directly; in others, it may be advisable to seek outside help.

Having these difficult conversations with the patient and family members while the patient still has his or her faculties is very important. People in the early stages of the disease may be defensive about losing their financial independence. Taking over financial management for a senior with dementia represents a level of deterioration and a role change or reversal.

If possible, caregivers and adult patients can create joint accounts or power of attorney for financial decisions. The sooner these options come available, the better, when the patient has capacity to engage in these decisions. People in the early stages of the disease may still be able to understand financial matters but may be defensive about having their power taken away. Caregivers and families of patients can also keep an account with the patients name on it and leave manageable amounts of money so he or she will retain some financial independence and dignity.

Advance directives for financial and estate management need to be created while the person with Alzheimers is still able to make these decisions. A newly diagnosed person with Alzheimers and his or her family should move quickly to create or update a will or living trust to secure the estate. These documents state how a persons assets are to be distributed upon death as well as arranging for the care of minors and including funeral and/or burial wishes.

Families and caregivers can reach out to the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the American Bar Association to find a qualified attorney to create the advance directives. If families cannot afford these options, or do not know where to turn, other sources of legal assistance may be available through local non-profit agencies, government web sites, state legal aid offices, and social service agencies.

Daniel E. Ansel is founder and president of Active Daily Living,apopulation health platform that provides interactive tools, personalized content, resources, and advice for seniors, caregivers, and people with functional limitations. You can reach him at dansel@privatehealthnews.com or (513) 731-6700, ext. 17

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Handling the Finances for a Senior with Dementia - i Advance Senior Care

Stressed over Finals? There Is Light at the End of the Tunnel | Dan Sanchez – Foundation for Economic Education

Winter is coming, and with it: finals season. If youre dreading that notoriously stressful period, things may seem bleak. Theres an old saying: Life sucks, and then you die. Along the same lines, you might be thinking: School sucks, and then you graduate and have to get a full-time job, which is even worse.

Well, not necessarily.

In some ways, work can be more fulfilling and less stressful than school. So take heart: there is light at the end of the tunnel.

First of all, a full-time job is a great leap toward financial independence from your parents. Independence is stressful, but it can also be fulfilling. Self-reliance can make you feel more empowered, secure, and proud.

You learn discipline, initiative, follow-through, reliability, accountability, and other key habits for workplace success.

Letting your parents take care of things for you may sound less stressful on paper. But in practice, dependence can be even more anxiety-inducing than independence. As evolutionary psychologist Peter Gray discusses in his book Free to Learn, human beings, like all animals, are hardwired to strive for independence. The longer that childlike dependence extends into biological adulthood, the more that instinct becomes frustrated. And its no fun to feel like a burden.

Secondly, work is in many ways a better learning experience than school. In a market-economy job, youre learning for the sake of contributing to something someone actually values.

For this kind of learning, there are clear criteria for success, because its either satisfactory to the boss, client, or customer, or it isnt.

And the knowledge or skills that you gain are by definition marketable (someone was already willing to pay for it), which means it is likely to continue to be marketable in the future.

Even if the technical knowledge and skills are not directly relevant to the field you hope to pursue in the long-term, such experience is invaluable for developing essential soft skills. You learn discipline, initiative, follow-through, reliability, accountability, and other key habits for workplace success.

In school, on the other hand, the value of what youre learning is much harder to discern. Some of your studies may have intrinsic value to you. But, as economist Bryan Caplan has discussed, the main objective people have for going into massive debt for college is to increase their career potential. And, as Caplan elaborates, the career return-on-investment of what people learn in college is often dubious.

No matter how stressful it gets, this too shall pass.

Its stressful to feel like youre spinning your wheels in life. Effective learning is key to feel like youre gaining traction and making progress. And teaching to the task can be much more effective than teaching to the test.

Finally, it can be fulfilling to feel like youre adding something to the world: to contribute to a product that people enjoy, to please a client, to make a customer smile. This is especially the case when you understand economics and how every participant in a market economy helps to improve the lives of others.

So dont despair. Stepping out of the ivory tower does not necessarily mean jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire. With the right understanding and philosophy, it can mean launching an adult life full of growth, learning, and meaning.

Keep that in mind as you study for finals. No matter how stressful it gets, this too shall pass. And what comes next can be awesome if you make it so.

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Stressed over Finals? There Is Light at the End of the Tunnel | Dan Sanchez - Foundation for Economic Education