Begin with Personal Financial Ratios

In his ground breaking self-help book, The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People, Stephen Covey presents an approach to being effective by attaining goals and aligning oneself to “true north” principles of character. Habit two teaches “Begin with the End in Mind.” Whenever I teach students or clients the importance of personal financial ratios, I always make sure that I share this principle. The personal financial ratios are a goal to strive toward and a goal to be obtained.

The first step in the process is to create what is commonly referred to as a budget. Susan Tillery, CPA / PFS, CFP® has coined the phrase “spending plan.” I find this title to be very empowering: it emphasizes choice in spending decisions. Once the spending plan is completed it should be reviewed in light of the following financial ratios. [Read more…]

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Affordable Health Care

Our Declaration of Independence contains the much quoted phrase, “We hold these truths to be sacred and undeniable; that all men are created equal and independent, that from that equal creation they derive rights inherent and inalienable, among which are the preservation of life, and liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” This sentence was originally written by Thomas Jefferson in the first draft of the Declaration of Independence. “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” survived the editing process and was ratified by Congress.

Try as I might, I am unable to find a constitutional right to affordable healthcare. Nowhere do I find an explicit right to health care. The Supreme Court has never interpreted the Constitution as guaranteeing a right to health care services from the government. And interestingly enough, the Supreme Court has held that the government has an obligation to provide medical care for prisoners. I leave you to draw your own conclusions. [Read more…]