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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 09:51 AM   #21
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

I see it all the time at work. No one is saving enough money at all. When I tell them my husband is retiring in a few months, they just can't believe it and ask if he is going to find another job! I just keep quiet and keep doing my work knowing that I can get out of the rat race soon enough. The mentality of most people is to keep spending all you make. Bigger cars, expensive clothes, furniture, houses - must make the average joe feel pumped up or is it because they feel trapped and need the jolt of a new item to make themselves feel good?
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 10:02 AM   #22
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

You know, I can understand loving your work (these are lucky people), and I can even understand loving the power, money and life style it can afford. Many people feel it is worth the cost....it's a personal choice.

Those who have attained solid FI but still slave away simply because they lack any identity outside their occupation, or have never developed any other interests, are the sad ones. Life is too valuable to spend as a drone if you don't have to. What a waste of opportunity. :P
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 10:04 AM   #23
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

When I do tell people I'm gonna retire at the end of 2006, they think I'm kidding because I will only be 52. They always ask "What are you gonna do?" I just laugh and shake my head.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 10:19 AM   #24
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

I work for a contractor, and we have a high priced consultant who in his former life was er...vice admiral of airborne missle command something or other (?). The part I do remember is he was at one point, 7th in line to "launch the birds" if we ever threw down with the U.S.S.R. in a mutually assured destruction kinda way. If the President ever did authorize, he would have recieved a phone call for authentication for his base/region(?). People waiting on him hand and foot, war time decorated, admired/respected by all around him etc. He only retired because his wife made him, so now he consults part time because he loves it. But I know he would have stayed on longer if he could. Crazy Navy pilot, flew some record number of missions over Veitnam, just a whole laundry list of accomplishments. He loved it. He has the best stories and loves to tell them. Awesome dude.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 10:56 AM   #25
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

I think Laurence already identified why more people dont quit...the folks who complain that they'll have to work forever while concurrently jabbing him for putting money away.

We all like the idea of the benefits of doing (fill in the blank) but dont want to plan for it or absorb any of the pain required to get there.

Its why people still smoke, are still married to someone they dont like, still live in the same old town they're tired of, never get that degree, etc, etc...

I hate to sound like someone with a motivational video for sale, but most people really can do or have almost anything as long as they get off their butt and start walking in that direction. We had a discussion like this earlier and there is considerable and reasonably argued dissent, but you really CAN make your own luck to some degree.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 12:11 PM   #26
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Quote:
I think Laurence already identified why more people dont quit...the folks who complain that they'll have to work forever while concurrently jabbing him for putting money away.

We all like the idea of the benefits of doing (fill in the blank) but dont want to plan for it or absorb any of the pain required to get there.

Its why people still smoke, are still married to someone they dont like, still live in the same old town they're tired of, never get that degree, etc, etc...

I hate to sound like someone with a motivational video for sale, but most people really can do or have almost anything as long as they get off their butt and start walking in that direction. We had a discussion like this earlier and there is considerable and reasonably argued dissent, but you really CAN make your own luck to some degree.
Oh man, I think determining why people do or don't do things is far more complicated than a motivational decision.
Isn't this what psychologists have been trying to figure out for years? Telling all the spenders, fat people, smokers, low salary wage earners, battered wives, and depressed people that they need to get off their butts isn't helpful and can be insulting when it comes from those who don't have the particular problem. Nature vs. Nuture. Behaviorists vs. Cognitivists.

Reason doesn't always work. I have my own peculiarity which helps me understand this problem a little bit. I developed the fear of flying after my FIL died while on a flight. It is totally irrational. I know flying is about as safe as tranportation can be. I can and do ride motorcycles, which is clearly more risky. But I cannot, absolutely cannot, get on an airplane anymore and fly anywhere. Makes no sense but it doesn't matter. I still can't fly.

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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 01:46 PM   #27
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Sorry if that suggestion upset you martha, I just must be wired differently from other people. When I wanted to stop doing something that wasnt good for me or start doing something good for me, I just did it.

Wasnt always fun or easy, and sometimes it took a while, but I got there.
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 02:11 PM   #28
 
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

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Sorry if that suggestion upset you martha, I just must be wired differently from other people. *When I wanted to stop doing something that wasnt good for me or start doing something good for me, I just did it.

Wasnt always fun or easy, and sometimes it took a while, but I got there.

Well, me too TH. Like quiting smoking, saving for retirement etc.,

But no matter how much I would have wanted to be a relief pitcher for the Minnesota Twins - It's just not gonna happen - wasn't born with the right physique to start with.

There are things folks are born with Intelligence, Home environment, Physical characteristics, Health, - I am all for individual initiative - but that only takes you so far.

Lots of folks want to get out of the ghetto, and they strive to everyday with all they've got. Once in a while 1 out of a *Million will succeed. Just don't tell the other 999,999 that they aren't trying hard enough! *- They just were not born with 'magic ingredients' and don't need to be blamed!
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 02:33 PM   #29
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

For C-T.......it's "ghetto" man......anyway, for Martha, I don't fly, but
I could; just choose not to. Don't like it.

For DOG50, a lot of folks didn't think I was serious
either. Shock and awe were widespread after
I quit.

JG
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 03:37 PM   #30
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

"Little ghetto boy , playing in the ghetto street
Whatcha' gonna do when you grow up
and have to face responsiblity ?
Will you spend your days and nights in the pool room ?
Will you sell caps of madness to the neighborhood ?
Little ghetto boy
You already know how proud life can be
'cause you've seen so much pain and misery"

-Donny Hathaway

That song is now officially stuck in my head!
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 04:58 PM   #31
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Quote:
Not alot of money (~35k) ... but it'll put gas in the car.
Enjoy!
Hmm ... you must be driving a couple of Hummers.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 05:39 PM   #32
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Sure C-T...a legless man isnt going to set any long jump records.

Aside from that, a lot of people every year do or stop doing <fill in the blank>. The guy standing right next to them that had the same environment, the same obligations, the same cultural background didnt do it or didnt stop doing it.

I have a friend who grew up in the absolute worst neighborhood in NYC. Stayed out of trouble, went to school, got a scholarship, went to college, had an idea, got a loan, wrote some code, hooked in with a couple of other guys from his school, got a nice little business going, and my company invested in it and I sat on their board for 3 years. He sold it out and retired a couple of years ago and is now travelling around.

Granted he's a smart guy, fairly astute. But despite having everything stacked against him he made it.

Backing up into the original topic, I think most people just dont 'quit' because they're a victim of 'slow boiled frog' syndrome coupled with a lack of long term vision and motivation.

But yeah, I'll concede that a guy with a 65 IQ born in the worst neighborhood with a bad social situation and is missing a couple of limbs isnt going to have the same chance as the average person.

Now what about all the people you went to college with, all the people you used to work with, the folks you hang out with today. I'm going to bet they all had as good a chance as you did to save, make money, make the right investment choices, make the right lifestyle choices, and end up where you did.

Why didnt they?

Or is it all dumb luck?

I certainly can point to a series of random left and right turns that got me here; turning the wrong way may definitely have changed the end result, or at least the timing.

But I did face and overcome a number of challenges.
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 06:31 PM   #33
 
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

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But I did face and overcome a number of challenges.
Let us be thankful for the fools. But for them the rest of us could not succeed.

-Mark Twain
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 07:58 PM   #34
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

*snork* Said that to the wife just last night when we were out shopping and observing some interesting 'behavior'..."if it wasnt for the idiots like that, we wouldnt be where we are today..."
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-25-2005, 09:17 PM   #35
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Met with dear friends from the bay area this weekend. They make more than us, and live with his parents, "to save money for a house". Been living there for 4 years. How much have they saved? Zip, Zilch, Nada, Zero! But they did buy a new SUV a few weeks ago. :-/

I told them how to put money in an IRA they could then use for their first home purchase: "We didn't get to that yet."

But at least they are going to buy a home, you can fix your costs and begin to see gains as your income goes up, pay it off, secure your place of retirement...?: "yeah, and when there is equity in the house, we can cash out and buy cool stuff!"

Saving money....?:"ha! You're so silly! Money's for spending!"

You can find a ton of people who have been delt a bad hand, but for every one of them you can find someone who just refuses to make any sacrifice for the future. I know these two are hoping to inherit the home from their parents (awesome place in south San Francisco overlooking the ocean). But the sad thing is I will bet my current nest egg they will lose it within ten years of getting it.

Martha, your story is poignant, I empathize and would go further to say it's not given enough consideration. If a loved one drowned at a nearby beach, no one would blame me for not wanting to go there. That's what I equate your situation to. But TH has a point that we can look to our own, socio-economic-ethnic group and see plenty of people with the same (or better) chances choose not to take care of the future. It's myopia, selfishness, the expectation that someone else will take care of it.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-26-2005, 03:38 AM   #36
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Why not just quit? See above. Nearly all the reasons have been stated. The only other one I can think of comes from a buddy of mine who runs a really profitable business. He says, How could anybody walk away from this easy money?

However, I secretly suspect that planning for retirement is the last thing on his mind.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-26-2005, 06:16 AM   #37
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

The point of my "can't fly" story isn't to tell a poignant story. I really don't care much anymore that I can't fly. Have plenty of other things I enjoy doing anyway. The point is that reason doesn't always rule and why people do or don't do things can be quite complex, so I am slow to blame people for their shortcomings.

To get back to the spenders who have plenty of money but don't save for retirement, I don't go so far as to feel sorry for them when they have to work more years than I do or live on a lot less when they do retire. So I am not that generous.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-26-2005, 06:24 AM   #38
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

I get pissed when it's in the family - so I avoid the subject of saving/investing with certain family/friends. On the other hand some took to it like ducks to water.

Go figure.

P.S. I also avoid politics with the knot head Republicans in the family. Flying doesn't bother me - it's the airport hassle I dislike.
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-26-2005, 06:28 AM   #39
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

Hi Martha! As you know, I didn't save and then had to
really scramble to retire. You are right not to feel sorry
for me. Never feel sorry for someone with 2 homes,
3 vehicles and a boat (and no debt)

JG
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?
Old 04-26-2005, 07:07 AM   #40
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Re: Why don't more people just quit?

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I get pissed when it's in the family - so I avoid the subject of saving/investing with certain family/friends.
No kidding. My DH gets very irritated at his and my relatives and their handling of money. I feel the same; there is something about family that can just drive you nuts. But like you I now avoid the subject of saving and investing (and choice of spouses) like the plague.

And my firm has done 3 divorces for my siblings for free. NO MORE!
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