Business Magazine

Financial Independence For The People

By The Contender @The__Contender

Financial Independence For The People

This is a follow on from the last post Do The Right Thing - is financial independence the right thing to do considering some of the challenges in the world.  
Here the discussion moves on to whether financial independence is a valid life challenge, an alternative to the status quo OR shunning the masses and joining the elites. Is it taking advantage of the system, getting with it, a chance to downshift or just opting out?
Is financial independence taking the easy route and freeloading?
THE.FUTURE: "CoNTENDER the FREELOADER what a F****** WASTE! What a looser. Hiding from me again, afraid to get in the ring and fight. Stand up man. Accept it someone else will take your place - you can't protect them by hiding away. Do you think you are setting a precedent? Who will run the factories and drive the trains if too many people downshift! Who will be MY servants?"
Here are a few options to obtaining a passive income and a brief critique:
Owning part of a businesses for income, means that you are reliant on the hard work of employees for that privilege. This could bee seen as taking advantage OR are you helping to supply jobs instead? Realistically in the scheme of things, owning a few stocks to gain an income for a frugal family is not going to have any impact on the investing landscape of the world.
Buy to Let - get some tenants to pay for your lifestyle because they cannot afford to get on the housing ladder so are stuck renting OR are you a good landlord providing quality housing fulfilling a community need?
Perhaps business property is better. Businesses don't like to buy - what if they have to move operations, cut or increase staffing. Business property requirements change very frequently. Is this a better place to invest?
What about peer to peer lending - riding the debt wave, charging people exorbitant interest. Is that fair helping to / being part of building their debt prison? Is that doing the right thing? THE.CoNTeNDER thinks this is predatory and sucks.
Government bonds - ultimately a taxpayer liability. If you buy them does it encourage politicians to issue more? Can one "trust" the government to pay the bond back - think about Greece and Cyprus in modern times.
Alternatively go completely off grid, get out of the system altogether but at what cost to you and your family? Is this even more selfish?
CoNTeNDER Just Despicable Me?

Financial Independence For The People

Universals Crime Comedy

Is being part of the elitist crowd - owning the productive capacity of the country actually what all citizens should do? Everyone should be given a stake in their company no matter how small.
THE.CoNTeNDER believes this would go a long way to pull back the divide between the rich and the poor. People would be more engaged. Its productivity would increase because the employee/owners actually care about it instead of being zombies going to work for a paycheck.
Go on buy back the productive capacity of the country!
Is this a cop out and THE.COnTENdER should have persisted with his silver spoon corporate blue chip career?
Is chasing financial independence / downshifting alienating us from the "real" people of this world? What will they think of Joe next door with no job living of his investments.
We are going to be living in France - socialism currently rules and wealth is bad. HeLP!!!!
THE.CoNTeNDeR thinks some of the mumbo jumbo on this blog is alienating. Perhaps THE.ConTenDER needs to chill out. Does our TRiBe really need to worry about fiat money, population growth and resource depletion. What can one litte TRiBe really do to make a difference swimming against the current. Surely soon enough the herd will change course and trample us. So why not be part of the herd and go with the flow? Is that a happier route or just a cop out in itself?
Perhaps financial independence a BIG mistake. Perhaps being a very rich person, big job, penthouses a sports team or two and great big yacht is the way to go...
The nagging pounding to THE.COnTENderS head tells him it is wrong. Complete self indulgent waste. What is the point in having lots of money if you do not do anything good with it? Have a look at the post: Early Retirement at 36 - Charity Time? about building a day care center in South Africa for 100 orphans.
THE.FUTURE: "Contender, life is about the finer things, owning the best football player, doing what you want to, having what you want."
THE.COnTeNdER: "I'm not really Despicable, a cop out, freeloader am I? I'm  just a little harsh on the outside and soft on the inside.." 
THE.CoNTenDER has decided all in all pure capitalism is the way to go, even if it is difficult to find it in the world in current times due to the huge interference from governments and central banks.
Our tribe has decided to go down the "dividend stocks" route for short term income /  financial independence.
We are keeping some protection in the form of cash and precious metals to buffer any potential problems.
Finally we need to consider growth. This is in two parts income growth and allocation and personal development.
We need to grow our income. We know due to inflation (money printing) the more income the better. Spare income can be used for more capitalist income. It has given us choices and for that we are very grateful. A part can be used for charity.
Finally the rest can be used to grow the Tribe (but no more kids!). By this we mean we need to develop new skills and put them to use, start a business, learn more about the world, become more self sufficient.
In doing this will this avoid us being seen as purely capitalist freeloaders. Will downshifting be seen a really positive approach to life instead of a selfish cop out?
Downshifting benefiting others
Financial Independence For The People
What are the some of the advantages / benefits of downshifting on other people and the state:
  1. The down shifters free up jobs for other people to fill
  2. They are probably more likely to
    1. Have time for other people as they have time themselves
    2. Slow down - less driving / commuting - freeing the roads up for other people
    3. Spend more time raising a family and addressing family problems - perhaps the children will be less trouble growing up?
    4. Be more healthy hence reducing stress on the health system. (think less stress, fewer calories and time to cook meals instead of ordering takeaways or buying ready made meals)
In order for downshifting to work the key question though is downshifting to what. To us it does not mean taking an uninspiring job just to 'tick over'! Life is to be lived. We can at least challenge ourselves a long the way in challenging ourselves we can make sure we see the benefits from our downshifting outlined above. 
Each to their own
Everyone has their own opinion. Their own ideals, wants and dreams. Is this what life is really about - fulfilling dreams. It it about these dreams being realistic?
Is the marketed dream of a private jet, buy an island and be able to drink enough pina colladas every day to anaesthetise a walrus - happiness?
Perhaps if the media concentrated on achievable dreams such as: a safe environment, healthy food on the table, challenging conversation...whatever takes your fancy will people be more satisfied.
Would we be happier, achieving our realistic goals and dreams, instead of setting ourselves up for failure? We should always work to exceed the realistic goals that is part of living. We can celebrate when we do just that.
We make of the world around us what we want to. We can make it heaven or hell. It really is our choice at the end of the day isn't it?
What are your goals are they realistic or idealistic?
Peace, prosperity and happiness
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