Carnival of Personal Finance

“The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone.”

I had a tough time deciding on how to host this week’s Carnival. Honestly, I haven’t read (or submitted to) one in weeks. As Carnivals get larger, the host tends to get overwhelmed and all you really get is a long list of links. If you’re lucky you get an asterick by the ones they like. If a list is what we want, then why don’t we just write a nice little computer script that churns out them out for us?

What I would like to see is Carnival hosts get back to being hosts and not just spend hours and hours copy-and-pasting HTML. Show us interesting new blogs and their posts. Tell us why you like them.

I received over 50 submissions this week. And they were good submissions. How is one supposed to choose? I don’t know, but do you, the readers, really want to sift through that many posts? Do hosts really want to spent all their time writing HTML? What about when we reach 100 posts? or 200? Or maybe I’m wrong, and everyone really does just want a huge link dump to choose from. If that’s so, I really think a script would save a lot of time for future hosts. (Of course, then why would we need hosts?)

For now, my goal was simply to create a nice mix of newer and older blogs, as well as a wide variety of topics from frugality to anti-frugality, giving to the homeless to winning the lottery, and differing investments. I gave myself from noon to dinnertime to do it =)

Carnival of Personal Finance #43

2 Retire at 50 presents I don?t want to be ?Normal? when it comes to our Finances!!. Not only he not want to be normal, but he has lived on one income while banking the second. Now with another child on the way, his Amazing Wife (why didn’t I think of that?) can stay at home with the kids with very little pain from the financial transition. Very nice.

Money and Investing presents Clutter Reduction. As I write this I’m surrounded by boxes of just… junk! I really hope I can take advantage of some of these tips during our upcoming move. Where did all this stuff even come from?!

Ask Uncle Bill presents You, Inc.. “Reduce your taxes and stick it the Man by starting your own company.” Ha. Sometimes I just feel like I’m just sticking it to myself, but most of the time it’s great 😉

Money and Values presents Gandhi on Budgeting. Man, that Gandhi dude knows about everything!

Financial Options presents The Week Ahead: Your Financial Road Map for April 10-14, 2006. Things to mark on the calendar for the so-inclined.

Inchoate Random Abstractions presents Lending Money to Relatives. IRA introduces an interesting site that proposes to formalize inter-family lending. I just don’t see it ever catching on, unfortunately.

The Almight Dollar presents You’re Never Too Young to Buy Life Insurance. I usually think someone needs to be dependent on you for you to want to buy life insurance, but maybe even the possiblity of dependence is enough…

FIRE Finance presents Investing – Digging for Gold – Online! Investing in precious metals seems to be the hot thing right now. Why does that make me feel like I should avoid it like the plague?

InsureBlog presents Beware the Fine (and not so fine) Print. Another reason why I am so wary of insurance companies… I’ll have to remember this when I start shopping for HSA plans again.

Don’t Mess With Taxes presents To err is human, especially at tax-filing time. Just in time for you slackers!

Stop Buying Crap presents How To Get Rid of Late Fees? Just Ask!

The Investimist presents Rebalancing my portfolio.

Fat Pitch Financials presents Portfolio123 Review

MusingMoney presents Enrolling in a graduate level Investment class?for free.

Flash’s Saving Blog presents Men Don’t Buy Tampons and other Budget Busters.

Mighty Bargain Hunter presents Is your spouse on your side with your investments?

Investing Guide presents Index Investing.

Brion presents The Power of Body and Mind

Personal Finance Advice presents Take Your Own Drink

Free Money Finance presents Maximizing Your Greatest Asset: Why Your Career is So Important.

The Family CEO presents Cheap Closet Makeovers.

Indie Mission presents When do you Give $$$ to Panhandlers?

It’s Just Money presents After Winning the Lotto, Should You Take the Cash Value or the Payments?

Canadian Financial Stuff presents Advice: Best Financial Advice Ever Given.

Financial Reference presents Why I Stay out of our finances (for the most part)

City Girl’s Financial Blog presents Ways to save on the electricity bill

Escape from Cubicle Nation presents Is saving $1,000 a year worth giving up my latte habit?.

Fidelity Observer presents American cars: What’s the problem?.

Next week’s carnival will be hosted at FiveCentNickel.

User Generated Content Disclosure: Comments and/or responses are not provided or commissioned by any advertiser. Comments and/or responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser. It is not any advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. you know, if you would have went with 10 only and wrote an intro on ’em, that would have been perfectly okay with me. the recent hosts have begin to take a more active role in hosting, and I think that’s pretty neat.

    course, these carnivals are a community effort so everyone should kinda chime in on how they want the direction of the carnival to go. Personally for me, I don’t mind the host picking their favorite post, even if mine’s not on it.

  2. Thanks for hosting!

  3. Ditto on Cap’s comment. I think the host should pick their favorite 10 or fifteen. We would get quality posts and learn a little about what the host finds interesting.

    Or we could do both a script which complies all submissions and 10 favs from the host.

    I dunno, just thinking out loud.

    Thanks for hosting Jonathan!

  4. I agree that picking 15 of your favorite might be a good approach. I’ve found that the carnival is rather long these days. I do have to admit that if I submitted a link and then it didn’t get picked to be in the carnival, I’d probably be a little disappointed. It’s kind of like not getting picked to be in the school play, I guess. 🙂

  5. Wow, my first published carnival and at the top of the page too!! Thanks for all of your hard work hosting.

  6. I know that people who get left out would be dissappointed. I used to be too. But now I think – Is it really that big of a deal? I mean it takes, what, 45 seconds to submit your post? Is it your god-given right to a link every single week? And if you aren’t displayed, you can just try again next week. Finally, there are multiple financial carnivals, it’s not that hard to get into one of them.

    Another idea is that you can’t be linked to the Carnival in two consecutive weeks. Probably the only way that this would work if it was part of the Carnival rules, otherwise some people would stick to it and others wouldn’t.

    I don’t claim to have the solutions, but I do think it should be addressed. Otherwise I for one would remain disinterested.

  7. Well first, Thank You for hosting, and for getting this up and out on a Sunday, no less!

    Second, and speaking as one who has never hosted, I’m in the all-inclusive column. That is, a carnival is just that: a potpourri of different “acts,” and folks are free to pick and choose which ones they want to see (i.e. read).

    Last, and by no means least, thanx for the kind words about my submission.

    Take care!

  8. personal finance advice says:

    Great job putting it together.

    I can relate to your sentiments. With the Carnival of debt reduction, it was easy to weed out non topic submissions, but with personal finance that encompasses everything, so that practically anything fits. I certainly don’t have the perfect answer, but limiting it in some way makes sense…very few read all the entries so highlighting the best from your perspective benefits all. Of course, some will be a bit upset, but I think if everyone who submitted had to host once, they would soon agree.

  9. Thanks for hosting. We do all appreciate the effort that goes into this task.

  10. Personally, I put up everyone who submits and include a summary from each one. Yes, it can be 40-50 posts, but as a host, that’s the commitment you make. Readers can sort out which ones they want to read and just because I (as host) like a certain 10 or so doesn’t mean that most (or even many) of the readers will like those same 10.

    Furthermore, one of the reasons people host and participate in carnivals is for the traffic it generates. As a host, if you include only a few, you’ll get linked by only a few. And as a participant, if there are only a handful included, then the traffic you get will be minimized and fewer and fewer people will want to be part of the carnival (eventually killing it).

  11. Nice job on the posts Jon.

    Here is my opinion. I just read through your first 10 “links” and skipped all the rest of them and went straight to the comments section.

    Why? Because I’m looking for content from YOU. The rest of those links were just that, links, which basically means that I’d have to go through each one of them and decide for myself if I like the post or if it’s wasting my time.

    You’ve earned a reputation for your content on the net. Let’s face it, if your blog really wasn’t that great, you would not have been featured in BusinessWeek.

    In my opinion, these carnivals have turned into a joke, mostly because there is so much worthless content out there. People submit their links just to get people to their site, most likely for revenue generation purposes.

    The fact is, if you have good content, with regular posts, you don’t need to mess with a “carnival”.

    Just my opinion, and I’m not singling anyone out, but posting links to everyone who thinks they need to have their post in a carnival is wasting the readers time.


  12. FMF has a good point, but so does everyone here. Personally, I like seeing the different approaches that hosts take to making their carnivals. If everyone followed the same format every time, it would get awfully boring. I think Jonathan did a really good job selecting posts this week as I found each of his selections to be some of the best I’ve read all week. While I may have chosen to include a higher percentage of the posts, I hope future hosts aren’t afraid to cut out the submissions that they feel don’t meet carnival-quality level.

  13. For those of you interested, there was a similar issue surrounding the Carnival of the Vanities last week. You can read about it here:

  14. I think there is a key point missing here. All Carnivals are not the same. The Carnival of the Vanities has a *specific policy* of all-inclusiveness. Hosts for COTV are required to post everything. (I believe due to the generic nature of the topic and high possibility of political-type posts being censored)

    The Carnival of PF, Investing, Debt Reduction, all do not have any such policies. Hosts have full discretion.

    This is not a huge deal to me, but it was my turn to host and I wanted to start a discussion on this (mission accomplished!). In truth, it is up to all the readers to tell future hosts what they want. I’m just a reader now like everyone else.

  15. Hi Jonathan,

    Thanks for hosting and for putting some thought into the first 10 links. I always appreciate the commentary and insight from the carnival hosts. I personally don’t really enjoy clicking on 50 random links. I already do that with bloglines and Also, I would be disappointed but not necessarily offended if someone ‘rejected’ one of my submissions. It clearly states in the ‘rules’ that it’s up to the host’s discretion whether to include or exclude certain submissions. Anyway, that’s my 2 cents worth.

  16. Nathan Whitehead says:

    I prefer carnivals where the host does something extra, like pick out their favorite entry/entries and add something to them. But I also like the “democratic” aspect of including everything. The ideal carnival for me would be a personalized introduction to the best couple posts (which I would probably read), then a link list for all the other submissions (which I would skim). It would also be nice if the host sorted the submissions by topic.

    There is also probably a lot of wasted effort in hosting carnivals, it really should be automated. If I get some free time in a couple days I’ll see what I can come up with.

  17. Hi Sir,
    We are thrilled at our first carnival post and that too within the top ten with your comments. We thank you a lot for your efforts and time. We personally feel that your choice of articles / posts were great, enjoyed going through all the commentaries and links.
    Thanks once again.
    FIRE Finance

  18. Champion Cheapskate says:

    Wide range of topics. Good feedback. Keep up the good work 🙂

  19. I already do that with bloglines and Also, I would be disappointed but not necessarily offended if someone ‘rejected’ one of my submissions. It clearly states in the ‘rules’ that it’s up to the host’s discretion whether to include or exclude certain submissions. Anyway, that’s my 2 cents worth

  20. In my opinion, these carnivals have turned into a joke, mostly because there is so much worthless content out there. People submit their links just to get people to their site, most likely for revenue generation purposes.

Speak Your Mind