Focus on Military Money Matters

by Sandra

First, I'd like to say that this is one of the nicest and most thorough websites I have seen. It is well organized, has a great look and feel and contains some extremely important information about money matters for military families.

That said, I would like to see more interactive comments focus on Military Money Matters. Perhaps an area where family members can write in with their comments, suggestions, tips and questions about everyday money matter issues like buying clothes, buying food, handling mortgage issues and more.

That area is found at Money Problems?

I recognize that overall the amount military men and women receive is impacted by overall political issues. But I think this website's discussions are turning more into just a place to vent about politicians. That to me would be a separate website.

Sometimes anger and venting holds us back from moving forward. I can say that has been true for me. I had a spouse who is now deceased from the Vietnam war, so I'm familiar with some of the issues. But I can tell you that my ex spouse spent so much time (valuable family time) venting, complaining about politicians and democrats and republicans. It gets old. He vented and on top of having PTSD, he died.

It's easy to rip up presidents and politicians. It's harder to get in there and do the things needed to get through government bureaucracy and get your money. That subject alone(getting through red tape) would be better served on a site like this. Perhaps getting a government official to help moderate that discussion.

This is such a wonderful site and its structure could easily accommodate areas for every member of the family to connect with people in the world about finances, clothes exchanges, forming food coops, connecting folks for babysitting. This site could reach all the different states in the U.S and become a hookup point for these types of things.

But it looks like today all people want to do is complain about politicians. At the end of the day, we have to be proactive about our own lives. If it were me and I owned this site, I would just put the candidates and their stances on one page and their contact information and ask people to organize people to vote. That's it.

The rest of the discussion would be for people to hook up families and help people to either save, coordinate the purchasing of goods and help each other from state to state.

But, I recognize and respect that this is your website, and your work and you can do what you please. But, I just wanted to give my two cents because it saddens me when I see venomous comments about government. There is so much venom and hate in the world and so little people staying focused on taking care of their financial business.

I am not perfect myself. But I have made it a new priority to surround myself with the "doers" and not the complainers. I'm so tired of having read in the past about what this or that politician is doing: what the "right" is saying or what the "left is standing for". It is not unifying.

We get to vote each election. That is where the fruits of my insights will be demonstrated. Otherwise I will choose to be around those who lift me up rather than pull me back down into things which can be readily remedied at the polls.

Wishing you much success with this website.

Thank you for considering my position. I know it is not popular with many people.

And thank you to all the service men and women who have served our country with dignity and self respect.

Sandra, first we want to thank you for those kind comments. We work hard to make this a helpful place for military members, veterans, retirees, and their families.

We invite readers to submit questions or comments related to money issues (link in the text above). Unfortunately, instead of people asking for free help to solve their money issues, and providing the information requested so that we can provide
useful suggestions, most of the submissions we get are people asking for help with an emergency situation where the only real salvation for them would come from handouts. We only publish a fraction of those we receive, after weeding through the ones that appear to be opportunistic.

I think the pages you've found with political comments were mostly submitted during the 2008 Presidential Election, when our election comments page was #1 at Google. I expect there will be a further influx of those types of pages as we get closer to the 2012 election.

Since there are so many restrictions on political activities by active duty military, we wanted to provide our military readers (who, after all, are on the front lines ensuring our freedom to have our say at the polls), with a place where they could anonymously post their thoughts about the various issues and candidates. We feel their concerns are extremely relevant to political and election issues, because the President we elect will be the Commander in Chief, and will play an important role in determining the course of their lives during his or her Presidency.

We agree with you to the extent that venom for venom's sake is rarely helpful to anyone, but we feel our military members should have a place to make their opinions known, so we provide it. We can't control what they submit. We do tone it down quite a bit sometimes before publishing their comments, however, when there is unnecessary vitriol or untrue accusations contained in a submission. And some we just don't publish at all because they are nothing but rants.

The problem with your comment:

"We get to vote each election. That is where the fruits of my insights will be demonstrated. Otherwise I will choose to be around those who lift me up rather than pull me back down into things which can be readily remedied at the polls."

is that these things can't be so easily remedied at the polls. That was the vision of our founding fathers, but many of today's voters don't understand the responsibility they have as voters to be educated and informed about the issues and the candidates, and they are lazy in that regard. They vote for the "rock star" candidate, without knowing anything about his political views.

The media is complicit in this problem, and rather than unbiased reporting, which is so important to the success of our democratic republic, mainstream media for the most part is clearly favoring one candidate and party over another.

The other problem is that most Americans don't see what's going on behind the facade, and the fact that wealthy people are essentially "buying" the election. With the behind-the-scenes machinations that are taking place, your one vote has very little weight.

We applaud you for exercising your right to vote, but if you don't do more than that, and help educate others about the issues and the candidates, you're missing an opportunity to help further the success of our country. Too many of today's voters are woefully ignorant about anything beyond the puffery they see on TV. And if that's what they base their votes on, we're in big trouble!

We have so many more things planned for, and we hope to continue growing to become a more valuable resource for military families.

We can always use more help, and we are looking for people who would like to write articles for us, either a one-time guest article, or perhaps a regular "column."

We would especially like to have someone who would agree to be our "veterans issues" editor and build up a section containing more information specifically for our millions of veterans.

We would also like to find a (some) current active duty spouse(s) who would be interested in writing for us about the issues they face today.

So, if you are reading this, and you would like to write an article for us, please review the guidelines you will find at the link, and submit your article. We'd be happy to hear from you!

Thank you, Sandra, for taking the time to share your thoughts with us.

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