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tony

72 Year Old Is Unlikely Millennial Early Retirement Hero

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33 minutes ago, tony said:

I wrote a review of Robin's "Your Money or Your life" and it's Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R34XCX7436D7ZK/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_rvw_ttl?ie=UTF8&ASIN=0143115766 

There is a revised editioned has just been released and I recommend this book.

I read and reviewed an older version (1992) and the investment strategy was badly outdated and the primary reason why I gave it 4 stars. It's not just a book about saving and investing, it's about changing our addiction to borrowing and spending like drunken sailors, and getting more meaning from our work. Its full of great information but it will take several years of personal growth to reject consumerism  and discovering activities that are more meaningful.  

 

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Wow, Your review is so comprehensive and so elaborate that I left feeling I just read the book. Steve you are brilliant.

Tony

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Thanks Tony! and so did 9 other people thought it was a good review too. I like reviewing books because it helps me retain the information, or as we say in education--comprehension. I especially those books that are self-published and or emphasizing the qualitative POV over than the quantitative. Both are important of course but the bookstores and Amazon are loaded with the quantitative POV.  "Your Money or Your Life" was not self-published FYI but it emphasized what we all know here about changing thinking and a relationship with money. That's difficult in our powerful borrow and spend culture. 

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Worth pushing this up.

I got Money magazine in the mail and Vicky's picture was on the front cover. It is well deserved! I read her book last year, and I love the fact that it was initially written by a couple, both her late hubby and Vicky, is refreshing, and now she has carried their message today. I think that a best selling personal finance book written by a woman is even more refreshing! And the Millenials love it because they want to be financially independent. 

The millennials reject the current rat race of borrow and spend culture, and they reject the so-called "fabulous" life of fake materialism and the overwhelming stress that goes with it. Nobody says, lives and writes it better the absolutely famous Mr. Money Mustache. They are not going down the route of excessive spending just because they can well afford it at a young age. I think they have a lot of guts and courage NOT to spend because they can afford the sports car, fabulous apartments or large homes. They decided to save and invest their money and instead live minimally because they want FINANCIAL FREEDOM (FI) by 40 years old or younger.  They don't even call what they do as "Retirement Planning." The new buzz-word is FI. 

What courage to stand up against our borrow and spend culture! And Vicky Robin and her husband were very early adopters of the FI revolution! 

Steve

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Unfortunately and sadly the co-author -husband died young at only 59 of cancer. His last comment was along the lines of " I've been given a clean bill of death so don't worry about me, get out there and help others"  (Not a direct quote)

He worked on Wall Street, but retired at age 31 with a nest egg of about $100,000. For the rest of his life, he lived on the interest, about $6,000 a year. He avoided buying on credit, he bargain-hunted and he bought only what he truly needed. He devoted his time to the foundation they started  and public service. 

Years ago when some of my Italian relatives visited America they were surprised at how differently Americans lived at that time. They all had big houses, big cars, and credit cards galore!.And so many ways to spend all your money! They also noticed how long we all worked.They were fascinated by it all at first but by the end of their visit an Uncle commented that we were all working too much to buy "stuff" and was glad to get back to Italy where most folks  at the time didn't even have credit cards. 

I guess in some ways I caved in to the system and in some ways I didn't. I admire the young people who have the foresight to see the way things are and who have the courage to live differently than the masses going forward.It took me a little longer to figure it all out.

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I hear you Tony. I am a first generation Italian and I learned about frugal living from my dairy farming parents as role models growing up on a small farm in Wisconsin.

But I am also an American that was also influenced by those values too. As a young man, I lived in Los Angeles with all of those spending opportunities. If I earned a $100,000 at the time, I probably would have got into the rat race too. A $100,000 is a lot of money today for any young person but it was a tremendous amount 40 years ago when I was thirty and Vicky and her husband were about the same age.

That's why they are so admired by today's young people who are fortunate to be earning a lot of money at a young age too and want to follow their footsteps of FINANCIAL FREEDOM! The temptation young high earners to spend must be tremendous! I did not have that experience at all. We are teachers! Sure I thought about it when I was young, heck, I wanted the sports cars, the fancy clothes, living a good life with dining at trendy restaurants and all that, but that's not what happened. 

Growing up on the farm made me accept my station in life, and I remember thinking that I will be a better older person than I was in my 20s, and that's exactly what happened! 

It is only because I made about minimum wage during my 20s and 30s, and in and out of school, finally earning my degree at 30 years old, and it was not until I got into teaching that I began to make a decent and steady income and able to save. BUT MOST IMPORTANT IS THAT I KEPT MY FRUGAL LIVING HABITS FOR THE REST OF MY WORKING LIFE and being happy with the slow increase in my wealth through the years. 

The FI movement is not just for high earners but for teachers too. We still have a huge benefit that they do not have, a pension. If a teacher just happened to start teaching at 22 and began saving in a low-cost equity-based growth investment (NOT ANNUITIES) right away, by the time they are 52, they would have 30 years pension benefit service and a lot of money saved in the 403b, they could be financially independent too!  

2 cents,

Steve

 

 

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I enjoyed the article, but I wanted to offer a slightly contrarian view.

Perhaps millennials are more likely to reject consumerism and materialism in favor of enjoying their time on earth, but we should realize that this is still an extremely fringe view, even among young people. I'm told my field, software engineering, is particularly fertile grounds for FIRE and anecdotally I can tell you that those of us pushing for financial independence are still very much in the minority. I really only know 1 person who is seriously working towards that goal and a few who are toying with the idea without taking significant steps towards it yet.

...I also wonder if the rejection of consumerism/materialism will subside as we further distance ourselves from the financially brutal decade that was the 2000s.

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