Stan’s tips for giving — and saving — money

It’s that time of year again — when the national charities start their Easter-Passover pitch for contributions.

The size of most of our donations has been diminishing, as would be expected in a weak economy. Last year I sent $25 to all those I used to give $50. And to those I sent $25 I reduced that amount to chai: $18.

This year I’m making more changes. I have added two new organizations to my list after watching Fox News, and with the help of a website, Charity Navigator, I will be deleting some of the others.

I am checking to learn which organizations use the highest percent of my dollars in actual charity programs and which are spending 70 and 80 percent of the amount raised on fund raising expenses such as mega-million dollar salaries for those that run the charity.

I strongly encourage you who sign the checks to sign on to charitynavigator.org and spend some time investigating. I did, and I was shocked to learn that some of my former favorite charities have some pretty low ratings.

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After that stunning political maneuver, Wisconsin Democrat Minority Leader, Mark Miller, said, “Tonight 18 Senate Republicans conspired to take government away from the people.”

I’m not so sure about that, Mr. Miller. I think they conspired to take the government away from the unions and give it back to the people.

We’ll find out what the people really think on the Badger State’s next Election Day.

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I love to save money. Who doesn’t? If you are like me you will sign up for bradsdeals.com, where you can find some pretty good discounts. What I enjoy most about it are the discounts it offers every few weeks for restaurant.com. The restaurant link is one of the many that permits us to buy a $50-off certificate for 25 bucks. That by itself is a good deal. The bradsdeals link to restaurant.com sometimes offers 60 percent off, sometimes 70 percent off, and this week, 80 percent off. That’s 80 percent off the $25. Net price: five bucks.

If you are looking to purchase a $50-off certificate for five dollars, make sure you read the rules for that particular eatery very carefully. Some of them state “Not good on weekends” or “You must purchase a minimum of $100 to get the $50 off.”

So as long as you read the fine print, it’s a super-sensational way to dine out, save a lot of money and learn about some of the places in town that you never tried.

I wish you a hearty appetite.

Please let me know how you make out.

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How many of you remember Bobby Fischer? He was one of the greatest grand master chess players of all time. He was also convinced that his life was taking a left turn because of a Jewish plot against him.

A couple of weeks ago, Lewis Farrakhan opened his anti-Semitic toilet and attempted to persuade President Obama into believing that there was a Jewish plot to “push us into war.” And more recently, Julian Assange was telling the world that the WikiLeaks smear campaign was a Jewish plot. Jewish plot, Jewish plot. That’s all I hear from the screwballs is Jewish plot.

I am stangershbein@bellsouth.net saying that once — just once in my lifetime — I want to hear someone say that something is an Episcopalian plot.

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