Military Families Blog Archives
January 2008


Welcome to our Military Families Blog.

Here you'll find current items of interest to military families, including financial tips to help you deal with the money problems that are unfortunately all-too-common for military members and their families.

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If you know of information that you believe should be added here, or if you would like to make comments regarding various entries, please feel free to send it to us using our contact form.

Blog Archives. Some items will remain at the bottom of the blog page for more than a month. That's because they're important enough that we want new readers to find them without having to search through archives.




Military Absentee Voting

The Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) helps deployed service members and their families who wish to participate in their states' primary elections by absentee ballot. Some service members may not be aware that

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Political Corn Flakes

Folks in politics is just like a bowl of granola:

Them what ain't fruits er nuts is just flakes!

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Narrowing the Field

With the departure of Fred Thompson, the GOP field took a predictable left turn. Since Bush 41 and Dole, it's been clear that Republicans do not

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2008 Military Pay Chart

The Military Pay Charts for 2008 include a 3% pay raise for active duty service members, and are available for download

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Election Humor

Electile Dysfunction: The inability to become aroused over any of the choices for president put forth by either party in the 2008 election

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Restrictions on Political Activities

With the campaign season in full swing, we thought this might be a good time for a review of the restrictions on the political activities of US military service members. Some are based in federal law, others in military regulations.

The main purpose for these restrictions is to avoid the implication/inference that you, as a military member, represent some official point of view.

The major prohibition is

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Flag Officer Supporting McCain

I know John McCain from my Navy days. While I do not always agree with him on all issues, I feel strongly enough about what is going on in our

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Democrat or Republican?
The Answer is Shockingly Easy

Do our neighbors to the north have a better perspective on our political process than we Americans do? This editorial piece was published in the

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Popular MilBlogger Killed in Iraq

Popular MilBlogger Andy Olmsted was killed in Iraq by a sniper on January 3, 2008. He was the commander of a unit whose mission was to teach members of the Iraqi Army how to defend their country and provide security for their people. Andy was determined to make a difference in Iraq, according to The Rocky Mountain News, where he was published.

The last entry Andy posted in the Rocky Mountain News was published on December 26, 2007. It talks about handing out gifts to Iraqi children. In the comments, his mother-in-law was the first to post the notice of his death, saying, "I'm sure Andy has a special place in heaven."

A memorial service for Major Andrew Olmsted is scheduled for Tuesday, January 15, at Fort Carson, Colorado, where he was stationed.

Last summer Andy wrote a final post to be published in the event of his death.

This is a portion of Andy's final post.

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Ron Paul For President!

Ron Paul Supports Our Troops and wants to bring them home! Peace In 08 Ron Paul For President

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John McCain is the man we need!

I have known John McCain for over 40 years. He was one of my flight instructors in the Navy before he was shot down and became a POW in Vietnam.

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Why We Serve:
American Service Members Speak Up


In July of 2006, the U.S. Armed Forces created a speakers initiative titled "Why We Serve." The program was designed to give returning veterans

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Some Surprises in Iowa

As everyone knows by now, the Iowa caucuses produced some surprises. From published reports and television commentary, we're to think that Senator Hillary Clinton is reeling from the sting of coming in third in the Democratic caucuses, behind fellow Senators Barack Obama and John Edwards. Her weekend attacks on Obama seem to add credence to that theory.

And the Republicans were surprised, we think, by the strength of former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee's support, with 9 percentage points between him and second-place finisher former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney. Senator John McCain and Fred Thompson tied for third place. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani stayed away from Iowa and focused his efforts on New Hampshire.

Tuesday's New Hampshire primary will give us some important new insight.

Be sure to join the conversation. Let us know which candidate you support, and why. But please, no flaming!


Join the Election Dialogue

We don't think anyone can deny the impact this year's Presidential Election will have on the future of this nation, and especially on its military families.

The Global War on Terror is a major issue in this election campaign, and because of its impact on our audience of military families, we felt it appropriate to discuss the campaign here. You may disagree, and if so, please feel free to ignore our pages about the 2008 Presidential Election, a list of which you can find on our site map.

On the other hand, if you'd like to participate in our discussion of the issues and the candidates, please voice your opinions. This will be an adult discussion, so if you're into flame-throwing, please don't bother. Your submissions will see the round file instead of the light of day.

We'd like to encourage you, as members of the military, to express your views specifically about the War on Terror, and the volatile issue of when to bring the troops home. Should we begin an immediate pullout, as many suggest, or should we stay the course and complete the mission?

You're in a better position than the rest of us to know if our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan are being effective in stabilizing the regions there. Is this a worthwhile mission and should it continue, or should we come home and leave them to their own devices?

We want to hear from our troops on the front lines, and their families. And we think the candidates should hear from you, too!

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Make a Resolution to Boost Your Income in 2008


Make 2008 the year you DO something about easing your family’s financial stress. One of the simplest ways to build a family business that can add some additional cash to the coffers is with your own web site.

How much you can make with it depends on your own BAM (Brains and Motivation). As with most things, what you get OUT of it depends on what you put INTO it.

And, as with most things, having the right tools certainly makes the job easier. This is a tool we can whole-heartedly recommend because we use it ourselves. It is how we created this web site.

Right now, the holiday 2-for-1 special has been extended till midnight, Friday, January 4. This is the best price of the year! At the regular price, you pay less than $1 a day for not JUST hosting, but some pretty spectacular features that are included.

Special SiteSell Promotion

With the 2-for-1 deal, you can create your own web site for less than 50 cents a day!!

I hear you saying, "Well, I don't need TWO web sites!" OK, find a friend. Split the deal. Then EACH of you can build a web site to create a little extra cash for HALF PRICE.

Or, make the second site a gift. Encourage your wife to start her own business, so she can eventually quit her outside job and work from home. An online business is perfect for military families, because it's totally portable. It can be operated from any internet connection in the world, and you don't have to worry about finding a new job every time you get transferred!

Or give your teenager the gift of an entrepreneurial spirit, learning to make his or her own spending money? But greater still, teaching them to be in control of their own financial destiny, and not dependent on someone else for a paycheck. Teach them the freedom that comes from being their own boss, and never having to worry about being laid off.

What a gift!

But hurry -- the special ends at the stroke of midnight on Friday, January 4.

See this page for some ideas on how to make this the beginning of your road to financial freedom!

Read the story of our own meteoric rise in Google.

With a 30-day money-back guarantee, you have nothing to lose! To see how easy it is to build a web page with SBI, click here to add your holiday message to the troops.

And HAPPY NEW YEAR!

May this be the year that brings the world closer to peace, and brings your loved ones home safely.

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Medal of Honor Recipient Jason Dunham's Mother
has Message for Today's Marines

Debra Dunham, the mother of Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham, who received the Medal of Honor awarded to her son posthumously for his heroism in Iraq, has a message for today's Marines (and other service members):

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Some Veterans Charities Falling Short



We've brought you warnings about other scams. This is not so much about a "scam," but rather a caution to be careful about which charities you support, when you give generously to organizations you believe will use those funds to aid service members, veterans and their families.

We're bringing you this information to help you ensure that your hard-earned dollars are actually going to the causes you want to support.

Some veterans charities are shortchanging the nation's veterans,

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Donate a Laptop to Keep Troops in Touch


Have an old used laptop gathering dust somewhere, but don't know how or where to get rid of it? Here's some great news! You can donate a laptop to help troops stay in touch with loved ones at home. And it's a tax-deductible gift!

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Jury Duty Scam Resurfaces

This one has been around since at least '05, but it must be circulating again, because we just got a notice about it from a retired Navy friend who is also a retired police investigator.

You answer the ringing phone. The caller identifies himself as an officer of the court. He says you failed to report for jury duty and that a warrant has been issued for your arrest!

You panic -- you never received a notice about jury duty. Now what do you do? More.

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Your Credit Score Matters More Than You Think



You may be surprised to learn some of the ways your credit score can affect your life. Many of us naively believe the only time our credit score matters is when we apply for credit to make a purchase, or for a new credit card.

However, having a solid credit history can affect consumers in a surprising number of ways. Credit histories influence everything from renting an apartment and getting a mortgage to applying for ...

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Don't Throw Away Those Expired Coupons!


Wait! Before you toss those expired coupons, read this.

Did you know that military families overseas can still use coupons that have expired for six months after the stated expiration date?

This would be a great project for your school or church group, or Scout troop. It costs you nothing, except a little time and postage, and expired coupons that are useless to you can still help a military family stretch their budget a little farther.

What a great idea for a classroom or school project, to teach youngsters the rewards of giving, donating their time to help others, and supporting our

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Car Key Alarm Adds Peace of Mind

For those who feel they can't afford to install a security system in their home, here's a tip that will give you some added security and peace of mind.

You know the key fob that holds your car keys and unlocks the car doors? You can use it as an alarm when you're at home!

Here's how:





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