It’s finally the holiday weekend. We look at two sides of this period of gifting: Giving and getting. We talk to two authors who have opposing views on spending: One doesn’t think you can buy happiness and another argues that you can buy happines (and economic growth). All those deals websites make it seem like you’ll never have to pay full price again — but one commentator says she’s sick of discounts. Wealthy philanthropists are pouring billions into the public education system. We look at the pros and cons of private money going into public education. And Jennifer 8 Lee shares how the average Joe can still make a big impact on their community too. Some are employing a new strategy: Deals websites. And we got our gang of personal finance experts to make their predictions for 2012.
A rare treat for listeners! Tess discusses the ins and outs of 2011 with all four of our regulars, Chris Farrell, Kathy Kristof, David Lazarus and Liz Weston.
What is it about consumers that drives us to want so much stuff? You could blame Madison Avenue, but marketers alone can't make us open up our wallets to spend. Tess talks with author James Roberts about why we buy.
Tess speaks with author James Livingston, who argues that consumer culture is good for the economy, the environment, and your soul.
If you've ever passed a used car sale and seen phrases such as "No Credit, No Problem," chances are it's offering on-the-spot financing. And it could well be a scam.