Financial freedom is not a Pollyanna'ish vision of a lifestyle bereft of funds, nor is it the idea that one can easily generate sufficient passive income to fund a desired lifestyle without having to do any actual work. It is the idea that you can live without financial fear, without debt feeding your sleep with nightmare.
What do Greece and an unemployed homeowner in Arizona have in common? They are both bankrupt with no hope of ever being able to pay back what they owe. As I wrote this, I realised it sounded as though I were making a joke (and a bad one at that). The reality is, unfortunately, not funny in any sense, but actually far more worrying.
Doom-mongers believe politicians will choose the easy way out and put pressure on central banks to crank up the printing presses. They often point to the weakness of the international monetary system, because it is based on fiat (soft) money, which is not backed by the value from tangible materials like gold. The pessimists think a monetary system based on fiat money will rarely, if ever, exist for long because hyperinflation is inevitable.
What we know for sure, what we know for certain, is that destiny is in our hands as never before. We know that if knowledge is power then economic knowledge must be economic power and we are certain that those who raise their knowledge will be at a distinct advantage. Those that don't grab it will only have themselves to blame.
Asking adults aged 24 and above to pay to work, through a student loan, risks putting many people off undertaking apprenticeships and contributing towards the development of our skilled workforce. Asking people earning this level of pay to further take out a loan in order to work is simply unacceptable.
The UK government's decision to resume fracking has been welcomed by the oil industry, and widely lambasted by environmental campaigners. But to a large extent the debate about the potential of shale gas in this country has completely missed the point.
I think it's really important to remember the reason for the season - whether you share the Christian faith or not. At the heart of Christianity are three words: love, peace and forgiveness. My thinking is that over indulging in any of these things is unlikely to result in stress, debt - or indigestion.