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Is the United States Still “Best in Everything?”

Watch this video on YouTube Last month, in a hotel gift shop in Athens, Greece, I started talking with the clerk about how expensive things were for Americans in light of the dollar’s plunge against world currencies. My visit to the corner Starbucks for a latte,...

The Physics of Santa

Watch this video on YouTube As a kid, I always wondered why Santa Claus never ate the cookies and milk we left for him. A few years ago, a physics teacher friend explained why. Here is a repeat of the column I wrote based on his information. Tradition tells us Santa...

A Costly Christmas Surprise

Watch this video on YouTube What is the most expensive single item on your list of Christmas spending? That special gift for your spouse? The latest electronic gizmo for your teenager? Your family’s holiday travel? Or could it be something you didn’t even know you...

Avoiding Inheritance Surprises

Watch this video on YouTube In many columns over the years, I have mentioned how important it is for parents and children to talk about the parents’ estate plans and the provisions of their wills. Actually having such a conversation can be terribly difficult, whether...

Bequeathing Blessings, Not Burdens

Watch this video on YouTube Is there a way that parents can give children money without ruining their lives? That may seem to be a strange question. Most of us would assume the effect would be just the opposite, that a pile of cash would solve a bucket-load of...