If you are a beginner then I recommend that your cut your teeth on one f the budegt offerings to begin with. Why not try a free trial (by download or cover disk) from ULead (Video Studio 9), Pinnacle (Studio 9) or Adobe Premier Elements?
Try the trials, you've got nothing to lose.
COMPAQ something or other with 500Gb Boot Disk, 1Tb external Firewire Disk, 4Gb Memory and a super duper sound card, 19" TFT Monitor etc etc etc
Sony TRV33e : Sony TRV310e : Canon XM2
Sony Vegas Studio editions to v11
Remember, there is always more to learn than there is to teach.