The credit crunch is not just affecting the big firms and banks as we read about the NAMA proposals, it also hits the ordinary people too. Ordinary people have lost their jobs, from a point two years ago when they were considered safe. Car loans were undertaken and a house move might also have taken place. Now all these loans are returning and making life difficult as people try and survive the downturn.
Many are young people who have been working and never saw the inside of a dole office before. It was obvious that credit was too easy to get and sometimes people were taken in by those offering re financing and easy loans. There have been a number of TV programmes about such cases and they are not just in Dublin but also here in Waterford.
When people leave school they are ill prepared and little trained on how to handle personal finances. The ease at which people got credit and over spent is astounding. Saving for a rainy day, as the old saying goes, was not advised sufficiently.
Could MABS, the money advice service, not be expanded and its advisers asked go into schools and work places. If parents do not give good advice what are young people to do? Are they at the mercy of mortgage brokers, lenders, traders who want them to take loans without knowing their personal circumstances. These are critical points that need to be addressed for the coming generation. They need to understand credit when they leave school and be prepared for the real world.
The lack of practical education at school has led to such a high level of debt among younger people. Many have learned a lesson others are suffering.
Hurlers do Waterford proud
This was our seventh All Ireland hurling semi final in 10 years and only one Final was reached, but against the team of the century. Scoring 3 goals and 15 points was a fantastic achievement and would have beaten any team but Kilkenny who are seeking four titles in a row.
A bit more luck, better marking of key-man Henry Shefflin and having some marginal refereeing decisions go our way could have resulted in a victory or draw.
This was the best game of the Championship and will be talked about into the winter.
Waterford hurlers restored pride. They are recognized as being one of the Top Three teams in the country and they can come again in 2010 challenging for another Munster Final and beyond.