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Old 02-10-2018, 03:48 PM   #41
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Another one of these ďI canít believe there are so many financial losers out thereĒ threads. Well if you donít believe it by now, you never will. Letís stop being so self congratulatory and smug.
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Where's the fun it that!
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Yes, your right. But itís getting a little old.
+1 I completely agree! But there will always be threads like this. For me it's easier to just post a new thread about something that I would rather be discussing, than to get others to stop discussing what they want to discuss.
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:49 PM   #42
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But it’s not only in America, it is a worldwide epidemic. Even in my wife’s small village in Thailand people need credit to survive.
Credit, in and of its self, of course, is not the problem. Not many of us would be able, for instance, to put enough cash together to purchase a (reliable) car or a house outright... well, perhaps with a wise choice of parents that would be possible.

The education system is where the blame lies. Give the number of classes you personal took up through high school that this was spoken of... or, for that matter, at post HS levels.

(Please don't make this a political issue.)
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:54 PM   #43
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But itís not only in America, it is a worldwide epidemic. Even in my wifeís small village in Thailand people need credit to survive. her sister and brother in law have good jobs but have credit bills and do not save any money, on pay day theyíre throwing money around like nothing
I think it's a characteristic inherent in most people. I began to understand this a little bit after reading books like "Your Money and Your Brain", "Predictably Irrational", and "Thinking, Fast and Slow". People evolved to survive on the plains of Africa, not plan for 30 years of retirement.

So we're living in a culture that didn't exist even 100 years ago, let alone 100,000 years or a million. It shouldn't be surprising that most people's brains are simply not wired to plan ahead. We're wired to figure out where the next meal is coming from and how to avoid being a tiger's next meal.

The 22-year-old who has the foresight to start saving from his/her first job for retirement is truly the evolutionary outlier.
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Old 02-10-2018, 03:55 PM   #44
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Credit, in and of its self, of course, is not the problem. Not many of us would be able, for instance, to put enough cash together to purchase a (reliable) car or a house outright... well, perhaps with a wise choice of parents that would be possible.

The education system is where the blame lies. Give the number of classes you personal took up through high school that this was spoken of... or, for that matter, at post HS levels.

(Please don't make this a political issue.)



(There was political innuendo and certainly no mention until you posted)
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Old 02-10-2018, 04:04 PM   #45
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I think there are many reasons why people can't or don't retire early. I don't think one can point to just one reason and say that's it, that 's the reason why. It could be someone has to pay alimony, others maybe are doing the best they can in life and don't make much and it takes every dollar they earn to survive.

Maybe some people just don't have the mentality to save money. Maybe their make up just isn't wired that way. A part of the reason why people are retiring later or not at all is because pensions are going away or they are much less than they used to be and that hurts, it has to hurt.

Some people just can't make a decision and do not trust anyone else to make it for them, so they may save money or they may not , but it doesn't compound the way it should if it is saved. It's a tough situation, I guess it always has been.

No doubt there exists in society a me now generation. They want everything now, but maybe their paycheck can't support that. Enter the credit card and debt. So it's an issue that has many reasons IMO.
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Old 02-10-2018, 04:11 PM   #46
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Some very good thoughts on this subject. I do agree that being financially responsible and learn to save if not taught at home most will never learn or see the picture of saving.

I also have seen families with parents that have taught their children the same way some are saves the others send every dime they have.

If taught in school everyone would at least have some education on financing and how to be able to retire if better choices are made through their working years.
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Old 02-10-2018, 04:18 PM   #47
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:06 PM   #48
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I reminded her that the kids can borrow money for education, but she can't borrow money to retire. However, she is bound and determined to fully pay for their college. It is a fundamental expectation for parents in our socioeconomic strata.
That expectation is completely alien to my experience. I honestly can't understand that mindset.

When I was young there was never any question about paying for my college. On a bus driver's salary in NYC we had way too many meals consisting of onion sandwiches to even consider it.

Luckily, I was able to go to a local college because I got a full scholarship and could live at home and commute by subway (two hours each way). But my only other choice would have been to enlist in the military. I had a very good friend who did, and after his Army hitch used the GI Bill to go to college. We have both done just fine in our lives.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:16 PM   #49
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People want immediate gratification more and more as time passes. Young people nearly insist on living in a space/location/dťcor that is 'just what they want' and as good or better than mom and dad provided. THIS - is all foreign to my way of thinking. I rent properties, and I always live in less plush quarters than my tenants. I just want functional and a peaceful setting. And people are happy to pay for 'pretty' and 'fancy' apartments. So, on it goes. Many people overspend their entire lives.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:47 PM   #50
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But my only other choice would have been to enlist in the military. I had a very good friend who did, and after his Army hitch used the GI Bill to go to college. We have both done just fine in our lives.
That's me but an Air Force hitch. My parents had a hard time supporting themselves. I left home at 17 out of high school. This is America, a good life is there if you want it bad enough.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:51 PM   #51
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That expectation is completely alien to my experience. I honestly can't understand that mindset.

When I was young there was never any question about paying for my college. On a bus driver's salary in NYC we had way too many meals consisting of onion sandwiches to even consider it.

Luckily, I was able to go to a local college because I got a full scholarship and could live at home and commute by subway (two hours each way). But my only other choice would have been to enlist in the military. I had a very good friend who did, and after his Army hitch used the GI Bill to go to college. We have both done just fine in our lives.
I hear you. My parents felt that their job was done once we graduated from high school. That's when they expected us to leave home, and we all did. I joined the Navy to get a college education.
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Old 02-10-2018, 05:54 PM   #52
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What's your experience? Do you feel like most people you encounter have a handle on retirement or is that the exception to the rule?
To answer your question, most everybody I know has successfully retired. Some retired early, some retired "on time" but that was of their own choosing. Some continue to work into their seventies, but once again, that's what they want to do. I retired at 70--my choice and I considered myself fortunate that I was able to do so. Most of these people made successful career choices, were relatively wise with their money. I don't think any of them would be upset if someone said to them, "You are so lucky."
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Old 02-10-2018, 06:44 PM   #53
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I have a co-worker who is 53 and plans to retire at 59. He said he should have over $150,000 and have his house paid off so he'll be good to go. I don't want to sound preachy but I just said "you make around $50K/yr and save 10% which means you spend $45K. If you retire at 59 with $150K(no pension), your money is gone by the time you can start early SS. Early SS for someone who averaged less than $40K/yr will be maybe $15K/yr. How will you live on that?"
I have an older relative who retired (not by choice) in much the same financial situation around "normal" retirement age, though they had already taken SS at 62.

Now, less than a decade later, the savings are gone and they have maybe $2000/month in SS as their only income, plus a home suffering from substantially deferred maintenance.

I will be meeting with them this week to discuss their finances, but I strongly suspect the most realistic option involves selling the house & moving in with one of their kids.
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Old 02-11-2018, 12:11 AM   #54
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"Fallen victim?" Maybe we savers are the victims? I am sometimes envious of people that live for the day. I try not to be judgmental because if they do drop dead tomorrow at 55 or 60 or whatever then I would say they did things right and I am the sucka!
We have a wonderful "live for the moment" friend. Very generous, and funny on vacations, while the money lasts. Hard w*rker, but big spender; doesn't see any point in saving since there will always be more (credit card) bills...

We do use him as a counter-example for my tendency to plan and perhaps obsess about what can go wrong. He'll probably be living just on SS when he can't bring in any more money, and he constantly stresses about "not having enough". Still, who knows what life holds. Perhaps he is making a good decision if health or life itself disappears tomorrow.

In overly optimistic moments, I claim that I have a 40 year financial plan. Even if this is true, the sober reality is that I have no idea if DW and I will even be in shape to enjoy most, let alone all of these years. It's humbling, very humbling...

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So we're living in a culture that didn't exist even 100 years ago, let alone 100,000 years or a million. It shouldn't be surprising that most people's brains are simply not wired to plan ahead. We're wired to figure out where the next meal is coming from and how to avoid being a tiger's next meal.

The 22-year-old who has the foresight to start saving from his/her first job for retirement is truly the evolutionary outlier.
Then there were engineers who were unhappy at w*rk... As a young engineer, I learned to look ahead into the future and assess and manage risk. Little did I know how much this would help me get out the the game as an "over the hill" burnt out engineer 2 decades later.

I got out early and comfortably due to the usual lucky breaks (parents, education, mental & physical health, career, amazing DW, etc). One seemingly unlucky break was that I was unhappy about some aspects of my career early on and couldn't find a way to get to somethings better. This got me thinking about finding a way out, simply another engineering problem to solve with a decades-long timeline and huge risk. I finally got out 15 years later, and so far so good ...
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Old 02-11-2018, 01:40 AM   #55
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+1 I completely agree! But there will always be threads like this. For me it's easier to just post a new thread about something that I would rather be discussing, than to get others to stop discussing what they want to discuss.
Yes, you are probably right. Getting a little cranky in my old age. Have found there is less and less that still interests me here. New people keep joining, but, not surprisingly, tend to talk about the same things. C’est la vie.
I should probably take a break for a while.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:39 AM   #56
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Credit, in and of its self, of course, is not the problem. Not many of us would be able, for instance, to put enough cash together to purchase a (reliable) car or a house outright... well, perhaps with a wise choice of parents that would be possible.

The education system is where the blame lies. Give the number of classes you personal took up through high school that this was spoken of... or, for that matter, at post HS levels.

(Please don't make this a political issue.)
Now I did not grow up in the US so I don't know what the educational system was here twenty, thirty, or more years ago, but did they really use to have in depth financial education ? From what I see around my I rather doubt it. Maybe we like to blame schools for what really is a failure of oarents to teach their children basic financial skills as well as the art of waiting for something you want until you can afford it.
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Old 02-11-2018, 06:28 AM   #57
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Yes, you are probably right. Getting a little cranky in my old age. Have found there is less and less that still interests me here. New people keep joining, but, not surprisingly, tend to talk about the same things. C’est la vie.
I should probably take a break for a while.
It happens on every Board. When I was planning my wedding years ago, the same Qs kept popping up on TheKnot. Should I change my name? Joint finances or separate? In FlyerTalk, the "hot button" topics include Passengers of Size, overhead bin hogs, kids on planes and whether or not it's rude to recline your seat. If I'm moved to add something, I do. If I'm tired of the topic I skip it.

As for financial education in the US- there's not much but so much of what I see here is more attitude than knowing how to calculate compound interest or read a financial statement. I learned LBYM, saving for goals and avoiding credit card debt from my parents.
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Old 02-11-2018, 06:47 AM   #58
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If I'm moved to add something, I do. If I'm tired of the topic I skip it.
Amen. Not that I have much anything of value to say, (other than offering strictly personal experiences about travel, and perhaps life), but I'll chime in on some topics anyway and ignore others.

DW & I share an I.D. on Cruise Critic, (although it's morphed into primarily me), and some of the topics raised make one wonder if the initiator has ever crossed the road alone. 'Trivial' falls far short of describing them.
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Old 02-11-2018, 07:13 AM   #59
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In talking to colleagues about ER, a common theme among my male peers (engineers, project managers) is that the guys who have been divorced cannot ER because their finances were set back so much. Then there are the guys with multiple divorces who are still working past 65. I'm sure it is a similar story for women.
The late Peter Mayles (author of Year in Provence) wrote a wonderful series of essays exploring the pleasures of the very rich, and whether they are indeed better. (They are.) They're collected into a book called Acquired Tastes. The last one, the most expensive indulgence of all, is the Mistress. She can utterly ruin even the richest man.

It's a lot easier just to stay in love with the one you married. Fortunately for me (and my early retirement), the Unindicted Co-Conspirator makes that easy.
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Old 02-11-2018, 07:15 AM   #60
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DW & I share an I.D. on Cruise Critic, (although it's morphed into primarily me), and some of the topics raised make one wonder if the initiator has ever crossed the road alone. 'Trivial' falls far short of describing them.

Ah, that's another one with recurring "hot threads". Should I try and smuggle alcohol on board? Can I make my flight home if it departs 3 hours after we arrive in port? Should I book excursions independently or through the cruise line? Can I get good deals on diamonds in the port stores in the Caribbean?

I try to be gentle- at least they're asking for information. If the responses can keep them from making newbie mistakes, it's all good.
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