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Donít Become A Slave To The Rat Race
Old 11-11-2010, 11:45 AM   #1
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Donít Become A Slave To The Rat Race

This is a recent blog post that I particularly liked. It makes the very interesting (and logical) point that your employer benefits when you are as heavily burdened with debts as possible.

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That day, I have learned a valuable lesson. I learned that big shiny assets and large salaries do not equal freedom. On the contrary, they can make us slaves to our jobs and place us on a path that we must stay on for years unless we make a conscious choice to downsize and drastically change our lifestyle.
The full post is here.
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Old 11-11-2010, 01:59 PM   #2
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This is so true!

Many megacorps, mine included, have a roster of real estate agents on call at their recruiting offices. Recruitment visits for newcomers include a meeting with the real estate agent and a tour of the (most beautiful areas in the) city. The purpose of this is to lure in the potential recruit to the housing dream and get his/her commitment. And once the mortgage is signed on the dotted line, exit costs can prevent the recruit from leaving. Some megacorps will even pay off a mortgage in another city to compete.

Young physicians (particularly surgeons) seem to be particularly vulnerable to this brainwashing. Eventually they realize that they have to work long hours and do many surgical procedures to keep said mortgaged house going.
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Old 11-11-2010, 02:04 PM   #3
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It's the modern version of "I owe my soul to the company store."
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Old 11-11-2010, 02:11 PM   #4
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I find it ironic that conservative top executives, who probably loathe the idea of any sort of national health plan, are happy to offer a high-end corporate health plan, free flu shots, health screenings, corporate "wellness officer," wellness site on the intranet, etc, etc. In other words, no problem with big brother being involved with your personal health matters, as long as it serves the purpose of binding employees to the job.
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:01 PM   #5
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My boss said that when he was in sales, the sales manager always encouraged the young guys to get big car payments right away so they'd be hungrier.
]
He is moderately disconcerted to see my POS car in the parking lot with the Dave Ramsey sticker. He knows it is only through benevolence that he keeps me around here, as I have no debts to bind me to his employ.

Long ago, boss' family owned a manufacturing concern that paid people half in money and half in "company store credits" to ensure that they were indebted to the company. I don't think he'd try that #$%^ on me.
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:04 PM   #6
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I find it ironic that conservative top executives, who probably loathe the idea of any sort of national health plan, are happy to offer a high-end corporate health plan, free flu shots, health screenings, corporate "wellness officer," wellness site on the intranet, etc, etc. In other words, no problem with big brother being involved with your personal health matters, as long as it serves the purpose of binding employees to the job.
But you could quit anytime...
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:24 PM   #7
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I remember way back in college a speaker that said something similar...


He said as an employer he liked to have the young person who has just bought a house and had a kid.... they worked the hardest to pay of their debt...
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:38 PM   #8
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Yup, it's all about control. Personally, I like being out of control. That why I like cats. And Zombies.
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Old 11-11-2010, 04:02 PM   #9
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I remember way back in college a speaker that said something similar...


He said as an employer he liked to have the young person who has just bought a house and had a kid.... they worked the hardest to pay of their debt...
The corollary is that if you don't have debt you work less hard, and perversely enjoy it more.
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Old 11-11-2010, 04:42 PM   #10
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He is moderately disconcerted to see my POS car in the parking lot with the Dave Ramsey sticker.
Don't mess with the power of the Dave Ramsey sticker.
I love it!
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Old 11-11-2010, 05:41 PM   #11
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So glad that I decided to FIRE when I did and didn't sell my soul to megacorp .
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:48 PM   #12
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Very true. +1

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Originally Posted by headingout View Post
I find it ironic that conservative top executives, who probably loathe the idea of any sort of national health plan, are happy to offer a high-end corporate health plan, free flu shots, health screenings, corporate "wellness officer," wellness site on the intranet, etc, etc. In other words, no problem with big brother being involved with your personal health matters, as long as it serves the purpose of binding employees to the job.
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Old 11-11-2010, 08:04 PM   #13
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So glad that I decided to FIRE when I did and didn't sell my soul to megacorp .
Me, too. It was strictly a rental with NO option to buy.
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Old 11-11-2010, 08:08 PM   #14
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This post is so true. I used to follow moneyning blog but have strayed for a year or two - this reminds me to re-visit it now and then. I had a message saved on my mobile for a few years before I RE - the message was "Debt Free". It has now been erased as it has been accomplished.
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Old 11-11-2010, 08:42 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Onward View Post
This is a recent blog post that I particularly liked. It makes the very interesting (and logical) point that your employer benefits when you are as heavily burdened with debts as possible.



The full post is here.
Interesting post, but this quote seems more significant than being free from the chains of corporate America:

"Above all, they were free from caring about what others thought about them"
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Old 11-12-2010, 10:13 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
He is moderately disconcerted to see my POS car in the parking lot with the Dave Ramsey sticker.
One of my post-Navy retirement jobs was with a large national software corporation. The young hot-shots working there were very aggressive and made very good money. But every time they got a promotion or a big bonus it seemed like they had to go out and get a bigger, better car, so I don't think they gained much by their promotions/bonuses/raises.

My immediate boss (who was quite a bit younger than I) got a promotion and all of a sudden his leased 1997 Lexus ES-300 wasn't good enough for him any more (or didn't project the right image for his new title.) He went out and bought a Mercedes. I ended up buying his Lexus with only 13K miles from the leasing company before it got into the hands of a retailer, thereby saving about $5K. (This was in 1999 - at the time I was driving a 1987 Volvo 240 with 175K miles on it.) The Lexus now has 178K miles on it and I am debating whether to ditch it after "one more winter" or try to make it 200K. I'm sure my former boss has gone through several more cars since then.
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Old 11-12-2010, 10:23 AM   #17
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Great turn of phrase I gave the Govt a long-term lease on my brain. They don't have any use for my soul

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Me, too. It was strictly a rental with NO option to buy.
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Old 11-12-2010, 10:58 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by friar1610 View Post
One of my post-Navy retirement jobs was with a large national software corporation. The young hot-shots working there were very aggressive and made very good money. But every time they got a promotion or a big bonus it seemed like they had to go out and get a bigger, better car, so I don't think they gained much by their promotions/bonuses/raises.
Yep -- lifestyle creep and "affluenza" are definitely FIRE-killers.
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Old 11-12-2010, 11:11 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by friar1610 View Post
One of my post-Navy retirement jobs was with a large national software corporation. The young hot-shots working there were very aggressive and made very good money. But every time they got a promotion or a big bonus it seemed like they had to go out and get a bigger, better car, so I don't think they gained much by their promotions/bonuses/raises.

My immediate boss (who was quite a bit younger than I) got a promotion and all of a sudden his leased 1997 Lexus ES-300 wasn't good enough for him any more (or didn't project the right image for his new title.) He went out and bought a Mercedes. I ended up buying his Lexus with only 13K miles from the leasing company before it got into the hands of a retailer, thereby saving about $5K. (This was in 1999 - at the time I was driving a 1987 Volvo 240 with 175K miles on it.) The Lexus now has 178K miles on it and I am debating whether to ditch it after "one more winter" or try to make it 200K. I'm sure my former boss has gone through several more cars since then.
Saw that in my last large software company job. Most folks had Mercedes, BMWs, Lexuses, etc... I started the job in 2005 with a 1994 Honda Accord and eventually caved into pressure from my boss (who said "Buy a new car, I pay you enough money") and bought a 2006 Honda Accord. Still driving it today. My now-former boss was a Corvette affcionado and would buy a new one every 3 years, but never the base model (more like the Z06).

The problem with owning a nice car is that people will ding and dent it as much as if it was an average car. This is why owning a "beater" car is good. People won't park/drive near you because they're afraid you'll hit them.
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Old 11-12-2010, 11:12 AM   #20
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The problem with owning a nice car is that people will ding and dent it as much as if it was an average car. This is why owning a "beater" car is good. People won't park/drive near you because they're afraid you'll hit them.
I don't really want to drive a "beater" but I don't feel a need to repair every dent, ding and scratch on a depreciating asset. I'd sooner spend that money on proper maintenance so it may look ugly but is not likely to break down.
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"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

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