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Old 04-19-2021, 02:44 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by LOL! View Post
I will completely disagree the premise of the OP. I have a couple of 20-something children who are out working now. Despite the rant-fest in this thread, neither they nor their friends have unrealistic expectations. And I can extend that to people I know in all age groups.

Get out there and see what the Real World is like. This is not a FairyLand Utopia and if anyone believes that then they are being exposed to the wrong media sources as well as the wrong message boards. Don't be one of the people spreading misinformation, too.

The premise does apply, the question is to how many of those young people. My daughter (late 20s) has friends that live on both ends, some have way overspent their incomes with big expensive houses, others are living comfortably under their income. My son seems to live well below his income and is saving a lot, bu,t he is back living with us shortly after graduating, (makes it kind of easy to do, but even so, many don't save).
My daughter has big dreams, but also was raised by conservative parents, she has so far has kept things under control. Her and her husband recently bought a house. It was too soon as far as I'm concerned, she still has one year of dental school left and she will be 7 hours away form the house for a year. But, I'm glad the price is within his income and low for their area, (they bought a repo). It is on the water which they both wanted. Already making plans to add a second story, but I hope that is years down the road. After she graduates, the price of the house will be two years income.

So then, dad, do I pay off a 3.2% mortgage. I'll tell her no, invest it, even though I paid cash for my house 27 years ago. I think that is the right answer for a 30 something.
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Old 04-19-2021, 03:41 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by freedomatlast View Post
The concept of delayed gratification has become all but extinct.
I will raise you one, and say that immediate gratification has become the norm.. and not only is one NOT saving money by delaying gratification, one might be spending more to satisfy the immediate "need".

In a world of lifestyle creep, perhaps one needs to note SLBYM (satisfyingly living below your means) instead of LBYM, just too denote your lifestyle is what you want, and not what you need.
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Old 04-19-2021, 03:42 PM   #43
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Wow, what a change of pace from:
I am lucky to have been, born, healthy, white, male, in the USA, at the right time, happened to like listening to talk radio, happened to hear, enjoy and learn much from Bob Brinker on the radio and begin investing because of that. Iím just so lucky. But, I didnít build that! It is only because I was lucky. Only being somewhat sarcastic.

Oh, and we lived below our means, not sure who did that for me.
As someone who's had to work from the age of 12 (paper route, then computers shortly thereafter starting around age 15) to achieve what I EARNED through hard work and sacrifice, few things frost me as much as hearing people talk about "luck" playing such a big part in someone being successful - or not.

"Luck" does not determine destiny. Hard work and sacrifice do. I grew up in inner city Detroit, in a 50/50 or so neighborhood. True story - there was an event I wanted to go to once and it cost a whole dollar. Mom told me she was very sorry, but we (literally) did not have a dollar for me to go to the event - and that was absolutely true. So, how "lucky" were we? I'd contend..not very. Yet, I somehow managed to go to college (9 years to get my 4 year degree since I worked every day to pay every single dollar of my own way), graduate with honors and retire early at 55. Hmmmm...

Hard work was, and remains, how one gets ahead in life. The popular refrain to allege "luck" is a cop-out, IMHO, from those who think there are some magic bonus points that one receives by being born in a certain neighborhood, being a certain race, etc. Nope. Everyone can succeed (barring something significant like a physical or emotional disability) if they CHOOSE to succeed and make the sacrifices needed to do so..unfortunately, that is so out of vogue nowadays and so many just expect to be "given" things instead of having to work hard for them..
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Old 04-19-2021, 04:17 PM   #44
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For most people, luck is a 2nd order effect IMO. There are a few folks in this life who got a really bad break - profoundly retarded or disabled. But for most of us, you could say "yes, it was harder for that guy than this guy due to XYZ." But if the person with the "unlucky" break worked a bit harder, s/he probably ended up better than the lucky person. I've mentioned my disabled dad and my mom who had few options except to create their own "luck" though a small business. They worked very long hours but succeeded at a time when we didn't just say "you poor dear - here's some money 'cause you obviously can't make it."

Sorry. I guess it's personal to me. I hate the word luck though I deny only it's dominance in success. 2nd order, baby, 2nd order at best. YMMV
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Old 04-19-2021, 04:22 PM   #45
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Open admission of luck. Everything else sort of evaporates after that. Sorry, it's right there in the language.
I know!!

And the harder I worked, the luckier I got.

strangest thing...
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Old 04-19-2021, 06:21 PM   #46
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The concept of delayed gratification has become all but extinct.
Maybe not extinct, but if you are referring to the classic Stanford marshmallow experiment, those findings have been put into question because of the small, non-diverse study sample in the original study.

"Ultimately, the new study finds limited support for the idea that being able to delay gratification leads to better outcomes. Instead, it suggests that the capacity to hold out for a second marshmallow is shaped in large part by a child’s social and economic background—and, in turn, that that background, not the ability to delay gratification, is what’s behind kids’ long-term success."
https://www.theatlantic.com/family/a...w-test/561779/
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Old 04-19-2021, 06:50 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by 24601NoMore View Post
As someone who's had to work from the age of 12 (paper route, then computers shortly thereafter starting around age 15) to achieve what I EARNED through hard work and sacrifice, few things frost me as much as hearing people talk about "luck" playing such a big part in someone being successful - or not.

"Luck" does not determine destiny. Hard work and sacrifice do. I grew up in inner city Detroit, in a 50/50 or so neighborhood. True story - there was an event I wanted to go to once and it cost a whole dollar. Mom told me she was very sorry, but we (literally) did not have a dollar for me to go to the event - and that was absolutely true. So, how "lucky" were we? I'd contend..not very. Yet, I somehow managed to go to college (9 years to get my 4 year degree since I worked every day to pay every single dollar of my own way), graduate with honors and retire early at 55. Hmmmm...

Hard work was, and remains, how one gets ahead in life. The popular refrain to allege "luck" is a cop-out, IMHO, from those who think there are some magic bonus points that one receives by being born in a certain neighborhood, being a certain race, etc. Nope. Everyone can succeed (barring something significant like a physical or emotional disability) if they CHOOSE to succeed and make the sacrifices needed to do so..unfortunately, that is so out of vogue nowadays and so many just expect to be "given" things instead of having to work hard for them..

Hi 24602NoMore, I think you got that I was being a little tongue in cheek.

I started the thread If we can do it, anyone can?. in it I ask, "If a young couple earns near $80k can they do what we did over 30+ years, or, are things really different?"
I got a few comments, (don't really know if they were aimed at me, but probably some)

"I tend to read a sense of moral superiority in these threads"
"No-one here will puncture your personal Horatio Alger story. We all believe ours too."

"Sure, these threads appear every two-three weeks. The tone is generally self-congratulatory."
"Consider those who also did the right things, but had bad luck: Picked the wrong parents, extended joblessness, medical catastrophes, divorces, business failure, a need to support aging parents or special needs children, ... the list is endless. Those folks are not active in the forum. They are silent evidence proving that not any one can. The truth is that "anyone" cannot. Only the lucky ones win."
"just having the stupendous luck to have been born in a Western developed country at this era of history, especially speaking English, is a massive,"
"Yes. I have a longer version of the "your success is mostly due to luck" sermon that discusses that. Basically for most of us, before we had ever pooped in a diaper we had won the lottery."


Hard work and LBYMs does get you ahead, but Luck "Bad Luck", can negate all that. But, that idea should not take away from spending a life doing all the right things, just to have people say you are lucky. No, you just didn't have bad luck. /Rant complete/
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Old 04-19-2021, 07:01 PM   #48
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We have many examples here of people who were poor and ended up financially secure. But these are all anecdotes. Perhaps what we should be more concerned with are objective measures for the nation as a whole. How do we compare to other developed countries? Is it easier or harder to get ahead in the U.S. now than it was decades ago? Is it harder in the U.S. than in other developed countries, like those in the EU?

Looking at the data, the U.S. overall does have less upward mobility than the EU these days - https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...rd-mobility-us
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Old 04-19-2021, 07:18 PM   #49
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The difference that I see is that when I graduated from high school you could get a good paying job with no skills at a factory. This allowed people to buy homes and have families. Now many non skilled people work for minimum wage. Itís a huge difference.
Terry, I think this is correct. My friends father was in the navy, and then worked in the shipping department of some company.
He managed to buy a home in the suburbs, have his wife stay home, and raise four kids with basically a highschool education.
That isn't happening anymore.
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Old 04-19-2021, 08:19 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by daylatedollarshort View Post
We have many examples here of people who were poor and ended up financially secure. But these are all anecdotes. Perhaps what we should be more concerned with are objective measures for the nation as a whole. How do we compare to other developed countries? Is it easier or harder to get ahead in the U.S. now than it was decades ago? Is it harder in the U.S. than in other developed countries, like those in the EU?

Looking at the data, the U.S. overall does have less upward mobility than the EU these days - https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...rd-mobility-us
I read the article. Lots of correlation presented as cause and effect interlaced with unsupported assumptions likely tied to the ideology of the authors.

Greater income differential in the US is not in and of itself proof that it is more difficult for one to achieve upward income mobility. Bill Gatesí billions donít prevent anyone from getting a raise.
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Old 04-19-2021, 08:30 PM   #51
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I read the article. Lots of correlation presented as cause and effect interlaced with unsupported assumptions likely tied to the ideology of the authors.

Greater income differential in the US is not in and of itself proof that it is more difficult for one to achieve upward income mobility. Bill Gates’ billions don’t prevent anyone from getting a raise.
It is not just one statistic from one article that matters. Public policy and perceptions are shaped best by objective measures and hard data, not personal anecdotes. I've not seen any studies lately that the U.S. is ranked particularly high for any social mobility factors, but if you have any research based articles I would be interested in reading those.

In the graph in the link below we are ranked 27th on social mobility. Not the worst by far but far from the best -
https://www.visualcapitalist.com/ran...-82-countries/

"Today’s chart pulls data from the inaugural Global Social Mobility report produced by the World Economic Forum. The report ranks 82 countries according to their performance across five key pillars: healthcare, education, technology access, working conditions, and social protection."
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Old 04-19-2021, 08:48 PM   #52
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It is not just one statistic from one article that matters. Public policy and perceptions are shaped best by objective measures and hard data, not personal anecdotes. I've not seen any studies lately that the U.S. is ranked particularly high for any social mobility factors, but if you have any research based articles I would be interested in reading those.

In the graph in the link below we are ranked 27th on social mobility. Not the worst by far but far from the best -
https://www.visualcapitalist.com/ran...-82-countries/

"Today’s chart pulls data from the inaugural Global Social Mobility report produced by the World Economic Forum. The report ranks 82 countries according to their performance across five key pillars: healthcare, education, technology access, working conditions, and social protection."

Well, I think we can agree on the importance of data.

I could comment on your chosen data sources, but rather than doing so here perhaps I could suggest that comparative economic mobility worldwide is a different topic than the one set forth herein.

So perhaps it is better suited for another thread since it in fact does not address the question of whether it is easier or harder to make it in the US than it used to be and whether young folks' expectations of success are realistic?
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Old 04-19-2021, 09:16 PM   #53
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So perhaps it is better suited for another thread since it in fact does not address the question of whether it is easier or harder to make it in the US than it used to be and whether young folks' expectations of success are realistic?
The point before was that the American Dream may be easier to achieve these days outside the U.S. But if you want a paper focused only on the U.S. here is one showing the decline in income mobility in the U.S. over time - https://inequality.stanford.edu/news...american-dream

The OP wrote that " People are saying you can't build financial security as easily as past generations. Whether that's the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, get it?" Yes, if by people you mean people like researchers from the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality, yes, that is what they are saying.
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Old 04-19-2021, 09:37 PM   #54
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Lots of correlation presented as cause and effect interlaced with unsupported assumptions likely tied to the ideology of the authors.
Kinda like a lot of the responses in this thread...
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Old 04-19-2021, 09:54 PM   #55
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The world is so different from forty years ago I'm not sure any comparison isn't comparing oranges to apples. The truth is I couldn't live like I did when I was a kid. Six people in a three bedroom 1500 sf house with one bathroom, one TV and one car. People didn't make much then but they didn't need much. Oh and that much touted factory job, my Dad had one and he complained about it every single day. Yes the kids are a bit spoiled but I'm just thankful for everything I have today.
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Old 04-19-2021, 09:57 PM   #56
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Haven't read through yet, but one big difference for young people I see is when I was young, I knew a number of people who put themselves through a good state college merely working at a fast food joint -- can't really imagine that now.
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Old 04-19-2021, 11:10 PM   #57
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It is not just one statistic from one article that matters. Public policy and perceptions are shaped best by objective measures and hard data, not personal anecdotes. I've not seen any studies lately that the U.S. is ranked particularly high for any social mobility factors, but if you have any research based articles I would be interested in reading those.

In the graph in the link below we are ranked 27th on social mobility. Not the worst by far but far from the best -
https://www.visualcapitalist.com/ran...-82-countries/

"Todayís chart pulls data from the inaugural Global Social Mobility report produced by the World Economic Forum. The report ranks 82 countries according to their performance across five key pillars: healthcare, education, technology access, working conditions, and social protection."
Itís not necessarily the data I have a problem with, itís the conclusions they draw from it. The data can be true but it doesnít prove what they are saying it proves.

And I donít assume that this Social Mobility Score isnít composed of lots of subjectively chosen and subjectively weighted factors. Iíll give that site a perusal and see what it looks like. I think Iíve looked through something like this before. When I see some of the countries ranked above the US, I become skeptical.
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Old 04-19-2021, 11:14 PM   #58
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I see it all the time, in our tenants!

Had one tenant move in and said she "HAD TO HAVE" a water softener...because her hair did not look good with unsoftened water. She wanted to rent one and asked if that was ok. I told her we'd install one and raise her rent by less than it would cost to rent one, and she said ok. We installed one a week later.

Then, two months later, she didn't pay her rent. She claimed she didn't have enough money. Yet she was going to the tanning booth, had her nails done, was always fully made up, and had soft hair! I offered her to move into one of our lower rent units, but she looked at the place and said it wasn't nice enough for her.

In the end, we evicted her. She felt like she should have all these things regardless of whether she could pay for them.
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Old 04-19-2021, 11:16 PM   #59
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Well, I think we can agree on the importance of data.

I could comment on your chosen data sources, but rather than doing so here perhaps I could suggest that comparative economic mobility worldwide is a different topic than the one set forth herein.

So perhaps it is better suited for another thread since it in fact does not address the question of whether it is easier or harder to make it in the US than it used to be and whether young folks' expectations of success are realistic?
Lol, probably true. Sometimes it feels like these threads are circling a black hole and must be pulled in eventually. Personally when I see one my first question is , ďHow long before someone brings up the L word?Ē ( The L word being Luck.)
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Old 04-20-2021, 12:01 AM   #60
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The difference that I see is that when I graduated from high school you could get a good paying job with no skills at a factory. This allowed people to buy homes and have families. Now many non skilled people work for minimum wage. Itís a huge difference.

I see that, too, from growing up in a factory town that at one time had a strong middle class. Most of those jobs are gone now. Middle skill jobs have been declining in the U.S. since the 1990s, and are being replaced with low and high skill jobs. If you live in an urban area like I do now, with a backbone of high skill jobs, maybe it is harder to relate to what is going on in cities with declining economies.
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