Part 155

Hello and welcome back to Mortgage Advisor on FIRE.  A shorter post this week as I’ve been distracted with other things.  There’s only one place to start; The Tory Shambles: 

This Week’s Tory Shambles

Kwasi Kwarteng was one of those Tory politicians who was seemingly promoted way beyond his competencies. During his time at the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Security, whenever I saw him interviewed I felt like I was watching a comedy show.  When he was appointed Chancellor, I just laughed.  He may have failed miserably, but you also have to assign some blame to the person who appointed him; Liz Truss, the current Prime Minister.

To understand just how bad Kwarteng’s time as Chancellor was, just take a look at those who held the position of Chancellor for the shortest periods, and why they left office.

Iain Macleod – 30 days

Macleod’s time as Chancellor was short as he passed away in office.  He had spent a long time as Shadow Chancellor, and his death came shortly after a general election.

Baron Denman – 31 days

Only ever an interim appointment.

Nadhim Zahawi – 63 days

Another interim appointment, this time by Boris Johnson.  The day after his appointment, Zahawi stuck the knife in Johnson’s back by calling on him to resign.  The 63 day reign was only due to the time it took the Tory party to appoint a new leader.

George Canning 103 days

Another example of a politician dying in office.  

So, to be clear, Kwarteng did not die, nor was he subject to a change in government.  He was just a terrible appointment, by a terrible PM.  

Our whole political situation in the UK is an embarrassment.  We’ve had four PMs in six years.  We’ve had four chancellors in four months.  I would not be surprised to see another PM before the year is out.  Liz Truss is ruling with no mandate, and no credibility.

Weekly Update

Not a huge amount to tell this week.  I’m back on the list for surgery to remove the kidney stone that will not budge.  According to the scans, it’s far too big to pass naturally and it needs to come out.  The op is pencilled in for November 9th, with my pre-op booked in for next week.  

I’m not looking forward to the procedure, but not for the reason you might think.  General anaesthetic doesn’t worry me.  I’m just stressed about going into a ward with lots of other people, having to fast for hours before (which as a diabetic is a pain in the ass), and being worried about what happens to all my stuff whilst I’m in surgery.  I wanted to have this done privately but according to the consultant there are no private hospitals in Sheffield that have the necessary equipment.  

As the week came to an end, I decided to revisit an old Lego project.  I’m a huge fan of The Expanse and a few months ago I bought a PDF guide to building a model of the Rocinante; the main spaceship from the books/TV show.  It’s over 5,000 pieces, and when complete will be 87cm long.  I can’t wait to get started on building it.  I spent most of Saturday afternoon checking what pieces I have, and then several hours shopping online for the remaining parts.  The monetary cost; £520.  Don’t judge me.

I should also note that getting carried away with Lego is the main reason why this post is a bit shorter than normal.

Before I forget, I finally received my branded hoodies with the blog’s logo on.  See the pics below: 

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2022 Goals – to be achieved by 31/12/2022

1 – Reduce weight to 90kg.  (Current weight 124.3kg).

2 – Complete 10 “classic” books (4/10)

  1. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky (1866)
  2. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851)
  3. Dracula by Bram Stoker (1897) ✅
  4. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller (1961)
  5. The Iliad by Homer (8th century BC) ✅
  6. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas (1844) ✅
  7. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (1867)
  8. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (1859)
  9. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (1862)
  10. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes (1605) ✅

3 – Read 10 authors I’ve not read before (21/10)

  1. John Birmingham ✅
  2. Nicole Perlroth ✅
  3. Sabine Durrant ✅
  4. Luke Smitherd ✅
  5. Max Skittle ✅
  6. Harlan Coben ✅
  7. Jo Spain ✅
  8. Kate Elizabeth Russell ✅
  9. Kiersten White ✅
  10. Rob Hart ✅
  11. Edward Aubry ✅
  12. Marina J. Lostetter ✅
  13. S. J. Morden ✅
  14. C. J. Tudor ✅
  15. Greer Hendricks ✅
  16. Clare Mackintosh ✅
  17. Stephen Baxter ✅
  18. Pete Wharmby ✅
  19. Devon Price ✅
  20. Nick Jones ✅
  21. Nathan Hystad ✅ 

What Am I Doing?

What I’m reading: nothing at the moment.

What I’m listening to: Waiting to start a new audiobook.

What I’m watching: Rings of Power.

Rings of Power… I was hoping it was going to be great.  It’s poor though.  The large ensemble cast has varying levels of quality.  There are a few decent performances, such as Owain Arthur as Durin IV.  On the whole though, the performances are not great.  I suspect that it’s a case of the actors doing what they can with poor scripts and poor direction.  Sadly I think this show is an example of story-by-committee, with too many parallels to the Lord of the Rings;

  • Dwarf-Elf bromance? ✅
  • Human-Elf romance? ✅
  • Wizard-like character befriending adventurous hobbit-like creature? ✅
  • Rough around the edges, noble warrior who refuses to be king? ✅

It’s as though the producers took the most popular elements from the film trilogy, made them worse, and then repackaged them as a TV show.  

Financial Update

Assets

Premium Bonds: £9,700.00 (no change). 

Stocks and Shares ISA: £58,901.56 (-£1,035.44). 

Fuck It Fund: £1,050.00 (no change).

Pensions: £50,868.35 (-£2,227.19). 

Residential Property Value: £233,989.00 (no change). 

Buy-to-Let Property Value: £150,993.00 (no change). 

Total Assets: £505,501.91 (-£3,262.63). 

Debts

Credit Card: £0.00 (no change).

Residential Mortgage: £180,898.62 (no change). 

Buy-to-Let Mortgage: £105,279.23 (no change). 

Total Debts: £286,177.85 (no change). 

Total Wealth: £219,324.06 (-£3,262.63)

Investment Income in 2022: £4,562.87 (target £6,000).

The stock market and pensions took a bit of a hammering last week.  I don’t see many gains being made until there is some stability in our government.  So I guess that means limited progress until the next general election.

In response to the economic clusterfuck we find ourselves in, I’ve tweaked my ISA a little.  I’ve cashed in three funds I was invested in, and I’ve used the proceeds to consolidate the money in my ISA into just two assets; one fund and one stock.  The fund is one that pays a monthly income, and I should start receiving around £80pcm going forward, instead of the £71 I’ve been getting for the last few months.  The stock I’m invested in is one I’ve held for a long time.  I believe it will increase in value and I’m loathe to cash in.

I’m edging closer to my 2022 goal of £6,000 investment income.  I still think I’ll fall slightly short of the target.  Unless I get a win on Premium Bonds, I’ll probably end up with around £5,200 by the end of the year.  Whilst still a decent increase on the year before, there’s a long way to go until I can FIRE.  

Disclaimer

The views and opinions in this blog are my own, and do not represent the views or opinions of my employer, nor should they be considered advice.

If you want personalised financial advice, seek an appropriate professional.  If you are in financial difficulty, seek advice via the resources below:

StepChange

MoneyHelper

Biolink and other links

You can now find all my social media pages by checking out my Biolink:

bio.link/davidscothern.

Also, check out Darren Scothern’s blog which talks about autism, being autistic, and general mental health:

www.darrenscothern.com

2 thoughts on “Part 155

    1. Yeah I will, for sure! It’s going to take a week or so for the parts to come through. I’ve gone for a design that it based on the original MCRN Tachi design. I was scrolling through a load of variants last night but got a warning from my girlfriend not to buy any more lol

      Liked by 1 person

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