Tuesday, March 08, 2005

A Fool, His Money, and Dr. Phil

Thanks to my wife for taping today's episode of Dr. Phil for me. I just love it when his stage turns into Financial Nightmare Central and all the trains are runnin' on schedule:

Synopsis of March 7 Dr. Phil Episode

And look ... Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Tyagi (formerly of Two-Income Trap fame) have a new book out. This one's entitled All Your Worth. Can't believe I let its release slip by me. For anyone interested, there's an excerpt available. (Yeah, I'll be buying it.) And this page has a chart which shows what is apparently the underlying premise of the book: The Balanced Money Formula. Spend 50 percent on "Must-Haves," 30 percent on "Wants," and 20 percent into "Savings."

Revolutionary? Uhh . . ..

But back to the daytime TV show at hand. Please allow me to state unequivocally that the amount of tangible, useful financial advice from these Dr. Phil episodes is about the same as you'd get from reading a Big League Chew pouch wrapper. Expectedly so, right? But man, these shows are great for (1) examples of How to Half-Ass Edit a TV Show, and (2) belly laughs:

...Brian and Maria just spent $80,000 on a timeshare in Maui, and until recently he was driving a Mercedes and she had a BMW. They were relying on their home equity to pay for the finer things in life, and now they're nearly $400,000 in debt.

And this gem:

...Trent doesn't see a problem. "If I'm making 95 percent of the money, fighting over a pack of cigarettes and a bag of potato chips is ridiculous. That irritates me," he says. "If I'm busting my butt working 80 hours a week, the least she can do is pay the bills," Trent says.

Now that is comedy.

But I'm sure that everyone watching the show — including its always-entralled TV audience — now knows enough to put the glossy shine back on their own finances.

Or not.

— Posted by Michael @ 12:02 AM


I really really enjoy your website and your blog. Thanks for sharing.


It's amazing how clueless people are with their money. How do you get $400k into debt? That's astounding.


Good site. Some of these people should be required by law to see a CFP before even buying a pack of gum.


GOD, after reading about only a couple of those situations on Dr. Phil, I realize why I DON'T watch that crap. Losers!!! Why don't they whine a bit more about their unfortunate money problems... BOO-HOO. We feel SO sad for you. WAKE UP!!! STOP SPENDING MONEY YOU DON'T FREAKIN' HAVE!!!! IDIOTS!!! I've got to start my own talk show... Dr. "T". We'll discuss finances. I will have NO sympathy... simply tell it like it is. "You're idiots!!!" Hmmm... Let's see... you get stressed out about money and then what? I know! Let's take an insanely expensive vacation!!! That should clear our minds. ...Idiots!!!

Sorry, I can't STAND stupid people... again, that's why I normally don't watch Dr. Phil.

** Comments Closed on this Post **

Thoughts on my personal finances, goals, experiences, motivations, and accomplishments (or lack thereof).

My financial life began turning around when I took responsibility for it.
— Dave Ramsey


Start (2005-12): ~$21,900
Currently: $0
[About Our Debt Paydown]


Savings Goal: $15,000
Currently: ~$15,115
[About Our Liquid Savings Goal]