Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

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Ivygirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

kingomri wrote:I might suggest giving a large chunk of money to a deserving charity to tell it that its not your boss rather than lighting a cigar with it
Charitable giving comes off the top. I would never use one of God's $100 bills to light a cigar... only one of my own!
Ivygirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

sschullo wrote:I think you are saying he's a poet.
No, not quite, though I'm no authority on who is or isn't. To me a poet must join originality and vision with a sensitive perception of beauty. A poem is like the sound of a silver bell in one's consciousness.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by sschullo »

Ivygirl wrote:
sschullo wrote:I think you are saying he's a poet.
No, not quite, though I'm no authority on who is or isn't. To me a poet must join originality and vision with a sensitive perception of beauty. A poem is like the sound of a silver bell in one's consciousness.
I think he is definitely a poet. He takes one of the most important aspects of living with the most boring, uninteresting and downright anti establishment ideas in our spend thrift culture, et. al "frugal living" and metaphorically and realistically turns it into a thing of beauty, love and wonder (and with confrontation too). He doesn't attract millions of hits from formulas, statistics or logic--HE LIVES IT! He is a combination of Mark Twain, Will Rogers and Garrison Keillor. Keillor for example, writes about everyday things and with his stream of consciousness makes things like going to a shoe store in Hibbing, Minnesota interesting and funny.
MMM writes an article about small car roof-racks and does the same thing, absolutely brilliant: http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/09/ ... big-stuff/
"We have seen much more money made and kept by “ordinary people” who were temperamentally well suited for the investment process than by those who lacked this quality." Ben Graham
avalpert
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by avalpert »

sschullo wrote:
Ivygirl wrote:
sschullo wrote:I think you are saying he's a poet.
No, not quite, though I'm no authority on who is or isn't. To me a poet must join originality and vision with a sensitive perception of beauty. A poem is like the sound of a silver bell in one's consciousness.
I think he is definitely a poet. He takes one of the most important aspects of living with the most boring, uninteresting and downright anti establishment ideas in our spend thrift culture, et. al "frugal living" and metaphorically and realistically turns it into a thing of beauty, love and wonder (and with confrontation too). He doesn't attract millions of hits from formulas, statistics or logic--HE LIVES IT! He is a combination of Mark Twain, Will Rogers and Garrison Keillor. Keillor for example, writes about everyday things and with his stream of consciousness makes things like going to a shoe store in Hibbing, Minnesota interesting and funny.
MMM writes an article about small car roof-racks and does the same thing, absolutely brilliant: http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2012/09/ ... big-stuff/
This may be the saddest commentary on modern society I've seen yet - how low we have sunk if what passes for 'downright anti-establishment ideas' and poetry revolve around frugal living and making your own roof racks. The Beat poets must be crying in their graves...
Ivygirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

VictoriaF wrote:
Ivygirl wrote:Aack! You are making me want one. It will be 10 years on October 20.

Guess I would never make it as an anti-smoking saint. In fact I don't believe I was ever issued a halo, all ex-smokers get a halo. Must be an oversight. At 10 years I want my halo.
You make an excellent contrarian. Here I was trying to impart on you some conventional wisdom and it went up in smoke.

Victoria
I suspect I am too ponderous to keep up with you in the humor department.

I said something earlier about Mr. MM and his enemies that I guessed at intuitively, but didn't have fully reasoned out. What will happen when he is no longer challenged by his blog and no longer desires to live The Way of the Mustachian? A man full of ideas and boundless energy, impatient with limitations, hungry to remake all in his own image - can he really be satisfied to ride his bike around town and care for his small son? On $25,000 a year? He has peaked so early in life. The income from his blog must be stretching his resolution.

What will become of the Mustachians if he betrays them?
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VictoriaF
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by VictoriaF »

Ivygirl wrote:I suspect I am too ponderous to keep up with you in the humor department.
I was going to comment that I am humbled by your beautiful literary language, but now people will think that I am just returning a compliment.
Ivygirl wrote:I said something earlier about Mr. MM and his enemies that I guessed at intuitively, but didn't have fully reasoned out. What will happen when he is no longer challenged by his blog and no longer desires to live The Way of the Mustachian? A man full of ideas and boundless energy, impatient with limitations, hungry to remake all in his own image - can he really be satisfied to ride his bike around town and care for his small son? On $25,000 a year? He has peaked so early in life. The income from his blog must be stretching his resolution.

What will become of the Mustachians if he betrays them?
MMM and his followers will convert to conformity, as Baby Boomers did, and will quote John Maynard Keynes, "When the facts change, I change my mind."

Victoria
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Ivygirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

I would like to hear from Mr. MM's fans, if some are still following this thread - and remember, I am one of his fans to a large degree.

If prosperity changes your Mr. Money Mustache, will you still love him?
Curlyq
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Curlyq »

Ivygirl wrote:I would like to hear from Mr. MM's fans, if some are still following this thread - and remember, I am one of his fans to a large degree.

If prosperity changes your Mr. Money Mustache, will you still love him?
I'm not quite sure why you seem to betting on MMM failing, but my thoughts are that he has proven that he can live well on much less than the average American and thus, if helping others do better for themselves results in his fortunes growing to a point where he can safely spend more, so what?

I don't think this will lessen his positive impact on many lives.
Mr. FI
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Mr. FI »

Alright,

I had to sign up for this forum just to respond to this.
Ivygirl wrote:I would like to hear from Mr. MM's fans, if some are still following this thread - and remember, I am one of his fans to a large degree.

If prosperity changes your Mr. Money Mustache, will you still love him?
I am a big fan. And I suppose on the outside chance MMM does change his ways because of his prosperity, it would be a bit disheartening. That said, I don't see it happening. This http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/04/ ... m-so-rich/ article sums up why I think that.

Anyways, this talk of his demise and having enemies...he's not an empire. Outside of being murdered, what exactly could his "enemies" do to him? This isn't some Greek Tragedy. This is real life.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by tfb »

Ivygirl wrote:I said something earlier about Mr. MM and his enemies that I guessed at intuitively, but didn't have fully reasoned out. What will happen when he is no longer challenged by his blog and no longer desires to live The Way of the Mustachian? A man full of ideas and boundless energy, impatient with limitations, hungry to remake all in his own image - can he really be satisfied to ride his bike around town and care for his small son? On $25,000 a year? He has peaked so early in life. The income from his blog must be stretching his resolution.

What will become of the Mustachians if he betrays them?
You mean as in when Dave Ramsey listeners learn about his $10 million house with a $1,285 per month electrical bill? MMM isn't that wasteful. Based on comments from the article below, Dave Ramsey fans don't mind either.

http://www.coolsprings.com/news/dave-ramseys-house/
Harry Sit, taking a break from the forums.
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ginmqi
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by ginmqi »

Heh. Ramsey fans are the type that would applaud him for being rich enough to afford a 10 mil house as long as it's not bought on debt! Ramsey is all about freeing up money so you can invest and spend it. MMM is all about freeing yourself from money, which goes a step beyond just getting out of debt and truly change spending habits.

By the way, MMM is totally down today. Wonder if it has to do with the heartbleed security flaw or his recent revelation of pending legal action against his site?
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HomerJ
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by HomerJ »

I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
Barefootgirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Barefootgirl »

MMM may make valid points and I'm generally a supporter of those who bring to light the trap of a consumer based lifestyle, but is there really anything new to see here? We've seen such commentators for many years now haven't we - or does each subsequent generation need to invent its own frugality guru? why do readers turn these people (whose messages to me, are not unique) into idols?

I'm not suggesting this to be the case with MMM, but always with these types of commentators, I am keen to try to figure out rather quickly whether they are making their money by using their financial strategies, or by selling them.

BFG,
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.
Ivygirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

I can still remember the wrath, confusion, and disappointment that greeted J.D. Roth's announcement that he had sold Get Rich Slowly for a large sum of money. Evidently he had sold the blog some time earlier but did not tell his readers. He had been transitioning to a new phase of his life already while still writing as though he were one of us. We were all still Getting Rich Slowly, but J.D. had Gotten Rich Quickly. And he did not say so.

The negative feelings this generated were not envy of his wealth - we were all trying to become wealthy, it was what we all aspired to. It was personal. There was no "Way of the Roth" on Get Rich Slowly equivalent to "The Way of the Mustachian," but still, Mr. Roth built his blog on himself: his own personal journey from financial stupidity and dumb debt to slow and careful change to financial virtue. Get Rich Slowly. He was one of us and we loved him. Now that he is gone his blog is a shadow of its former self because he, personally, made it what it was. We followed it because we were following him.

Mr. Roth very much deserved his good fortune. He worked like a dog on that blog. He was a model of patience in how to engage one's critics and turn them into allies. He put up with blasts of negativity, questions of his motives, just plain idiocy, all with the grace of a gentleman and often true kindness. He did the world a service with his teaching, and making a place for us to come and learn. But he outgrew the slow careful financial journey, he needed new things to write and do, new things to become. And suddenly - he's rich, and able to pursue those new things.

He was one of us until he got money. Then he began to think, "Oh my, I've mopped myself into a corner here, all these people are looking to me but I don't want to be their guru anymore. I want to go and be rich. I want to enjoy what I have earned in my own way without having to conform to their expectations of me. And I - don't feel that I can tell them. I mean they love me. What could I say to them?" He was in a position of hypocrisy for a time, simply because the whole situation had changed, and he knew it but his readers didn't. The same thing may happen to Mr. MM.

What happened in my case was that I disengaged emotionally from any future "gurus" and realized that just because my feelings are attached to them, it doesn't mean they feel the same way about me.

Go and be free, Mr. J.D. Roth. Fly into the wind. You don't have to be my guru anymore.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by KyleAAA »

Ivygirl wrote:I can still remember the wrath, confusion, and disappointment that greeted J.D. Roth's announcement that he had sold Get Rich Slowly for a large sum of money. Evidently he had sold the blog some time earlier but did not tell his readers. He had been transitioning to a new phase of his life already while still writing as though he were one of us. We were all still Getting Rich Slowly, but J.D. had Gotten Rich Quickly. And he did not say so.

The negative feelings this generated were not envy of his wealth - we were all trying to become wealthy, it was what we all aspired to. It was personal. There was no "Way of the Roth" on Get Rich Slowly equivalent to "The Way of the Mustachian," but still, Mr. Roth built his blog on himself: his own personal journey from financial stupidity and dumb debt to slow and careful change to financial virtue. Get Rich Slowly. He was one of us and we loved him. Now that he is gone his blog is a shadow of its former self because he, personally, made it what it was. We followed it because we were following him.

Mr. Roth very much deserved his good fortune. He worked like a dog on that blog. He was a model of patience in how to engage one's critics and turn them into allies. He put up with blasts of negativity, questions of his motives, just plain idiocy, all with the grace of a gentleman and often true kindness. He did the world a service with his teaching, and making a place for us to come and learn. But he outgrew the slow careful financial journey, he needed new things to write and do, new things to become. And suddenly - he's rich, and able to pursue those new things.

He was one of us until he got money. Then he began to think, "Oh my, I've mopped myself into a corner here, all these people are looking to me but I don't want to be their guru anymore. I want to go and be rich. I want to enjoy what I have earned in my own way without having to conform to their expectations of me. And I - don't feel that I can tell them. I mean they love me. What could I say to them?" He was in a position of hypocrisy for a time, simply because the whole situation had changed, and he knew it but his readers didn't. The same thing may happen to Mr. MM.

What happened in my case was that I disengaged emotionally from any future "gurus" and realized that just because my feelings are attached to them, it doesn't mean they feel the same way about me.

Go and be free, Mr. J.D. Roth. Fly into the wind. You don't have to be my guru anymore.
Well to be fair, he was already quite rich well before he sold the blog. It's not like it was earning pennies before the sale. It's been a while since I've checked out MMM's blog, but there's no doubt he could pretty much immediately start generating a healthy 6-figure income with all that traffic if he wanted to. Maybe he already is. By the time these people get to the point where they have a lot of followers, they are already earning big bucks whether they've sold or not. But that doesn't really invalidate their message. JD's message was to spend less than you make, stay out of debt, and invest for the future. Well, he can do that just as well making $500,000 per year as $50,000 per year. The only difference is how much he's saving.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by avalpert »

HomerJ wrote:I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
But you don't need money to do that - not if you have a friend over there who will let you stay in his house, eat his food and take you around in exchange for your labor on his house... Spending money instead of bartering is so not badass...
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by 3CT_Paddler »

Not well versed on all thing's MMM, but I thought the post... http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/04/ ... m-so-rich/ and comment section were illuminating. Certainly his perspective is a better alternative to the typical American consumerist who pays no attention where the money is going.

But when reading the comment section it seemed like the fixation is still with money... although its more about who can save the most vs the typical who has the most things. One thing I really love about Bogle is a healthy perspective on money. I see in his writing and speeches someone who cares about handling money with care and the attention its due, but also recognizing that there is more to life than the almighty dollar. There are greater values and a greater purpose than winning the money race... whether that's how many toys you have or how frugal you are.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by oliver81 »

I started reading MMM after reading the Washington Post article about him. I sent a link to my dad, who was a couple months away from retiring. My dad said, "the key thing here is how to apply what has worked for him, in your own life."

I try to keep this in mind now when reading the blog.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by HomerJ »

avalpert wrote:
HomerJ wrote:I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
But you don't need money to do that - not if you have a friend over there who will let you stay in his house, eat his food and take you around in exchange for your labor on his house... Spending money instead of bartering is so not badass...
Bartering is EXACTLY the same as spending money... There is ZERO difference between me working for $5000, then spending it on a trip to Greece, or me doing some work directly for someone in exchange for a trip to Greece.

And that's the only issue I have with MMM... He's NOT living a 25k lifestyle... People living a 25k lifestyle do not get to go to Greece or Hawaii. He is indeed living very frugally, and could still be an inspiration to people without having to do fuzzy math. He claims living on 25k a year for decades is a great life... I say he doesn't really know if it is, since he's living a higher standard of living than that.

The man makes decent money, doing what he loves... Nothing wrong with him spending 30k or gasp.. 40k a year on a few luxuries or experiences for his family.. I have a small problem with him living a 35k lifestyle and telling everyone how great a 25k lifestyle is. Other than that, I think he does a lot of good.
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HomerJ
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by HomerJ »

3CT_Paddler wrote:Not well versed on all thing's MMM, but I thought the post... http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/04/ ... m-so-rich/ and comment section were illuminating. Certainly his perspective is a better alternative to the typical American consumerist who pays no attention where the money is going.

But when reading the comment section it seemed like the fixation is still with money... although its more about who can save the most vs the typical who has the most things. One thing I really love about Bogle is a healthy perspective on money. I see in his writing and speeches someone who cares about handling money with care and the attention its due, but also recognizing that there is more to life than the almighty dollar. There are greater values and a greater purpose than winning the money race... whether that's how many toys you have or how frugal you are.
Moderation in all things... It's a very good point...
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ginmqi
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by ginmqi »

Barefootgirl wrote:MMM may make valid points and I'm generally a supporter of those who bring to light the trap of a consumer based lifestyle, but is there really anything new to see here? We've seen such commentators for many years now haven't we - or does each subsequent generation need to invent its own frugality guru? why do readers turn these people (whose messages to me, are not unique) into idols?

I'm not suggesting this to be the case with MMM, but always with these types of commentators, I am keen to try to figure out rather quickly whether they are making their money by using their financial strategies, or by selling them.

BFG,
MMM seems to be the frugality guru for the Millenials. And you're right. There are people like this everywhere. There were "Mustachians" before MMM came along. It's just that MMM had the entrepreneurship to capture this niche brand and help spread his message.

Again as others have mentioned, the guy himself may not be living a 25k lifestyle and his "worth" is much much higher than what his portfolio shows (possibly.) And of course he can easily turn his brand into a 6-figure income.

I think this is a result of the internet generation. Where people are able to organize and follow things over the internet instead of at the local coffee/barber shop. And if you're successful you bet you can live on all the freebies MMM gets and still live on "25k" a year.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by SRenaeP »

HomerJ wrote:
avalpert wrote:
HomerJ wrote:I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
But you don't need money to do that - not if you have a friend over there who will let you stay in his house, eat his food and take you around in exchange for your labor on his house... Spending money instead of bartering is so not badass...
Bartering is EXACTLY the same as spending money... There is ZERO difference between me working for $5000, then spending it on a trip to Greece, or me doing some work directly for someone in exchange for a trip to Greece.

And that's the only issue I have with MMM... He's NOT living a 25k lifestyle... People living a 25k lifestyle do not get to go to Greece or Hawaii. He is indeed living very frugally, and could still be an inspiration to people without having to do fuzzy math. He claims living on 25k a year for decades is a great life... I say he doesn't really know if it is, since he's living a higher standard of living than that.

The man makes decent money, doing what he loves... Nothing wrong with him spending 30k or gasp.. 40k a year on a few luxuries or experiences for his family.. I have a small problem with him living a 35k lifestyle and telling everyone how great a 25k lifestyle is. Other than that, I think he does a lot of good.
Who cares what dollar amount lifestyle he leads if it doesn't cost him money? I travel using hotel points, FF miles and other travel hacks. So I spend $X on travel but the 'market rate' of my travel is $X + Y. Does that mean my budget isn't valid?

-Steph
avalpert
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by avalpert »

SRenaeP wrote:
HomerJ wrote:
avalpert wrote:
HomerJ wrote:I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
But you don't need money to do that - not if you have a friend over there who will let you stay in his house, eat his food and take you around in exchange for your labor on his house... Spending money instead of bartering is so not badass...
Bartering is EXACTLY the same as spending money... There is ZERO difference between me working for $5000, then spending it on a trip to Greece, or me doing some work directly for someone in exchange for a trip to Greece.

And that's the only issue I have with MMM... He's NOT living a 25k lifestyle... People living a 25k lifestyle do not get to go to Greece or Hawaii. He is indeed living very frugally, and could still be an inspiration to people without having to do fuzzy math. He claims living on 25k a year for decades is a great life... I say he doesn't really know if it is, since he's living a higher standard of living than that.

The man makes decent money, doing what he loves... Nothing wrong with him spending 30k or gasp.. 40k a year on a few luxuries or experiences for his family.. I have a small problem with him living a 35k lifestyle and telling everyone how great a 25k lifestyle is. Other than that, I think he does a lot of good.
Who cares what dollar amount lifestyle he leads if it doesn't cost him money? I travel using hotel points, FF miles and other travel hacks. So I spend $X on travel but the 'market rate' of my travel is $X + Y. Does that mean my budget isn't valid?

-Steph
So, if instead of paying you a salary your employer bought all the goods and services you wanted throughout the year would that be the same as living on a $0 budget? If you then went around building a following off the notion that its possible for everyone to live off a $0 budget, would that be honest?
Barefootgirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Barefootgirl »

wow, two great posts asking great questions and both pertinent.

Bravo! BFG
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.
Barefootgirl
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Barefootgirl »

A thought just occurred to me as to the generational angle, the teacher appears when the student is ready - perhaps most begin to wake up around age 30.

BFG
How many retired people does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Only one, but he takes all day.
SRenaeP
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by SRenaeP »

avalpert wrote:
SRenaeP wrote:
HomerJ wrote:
avalpert wrote:
HomerJ wrote:I'm going to Greece next year for my niece's wedding. I'll probably visit some very interesting historical sites, and learn more about the history of the world and mankind. I will see beautiful islands, sparkling seas, and I'll imagine how it must of looked very much the same 2000 years ago...

I like having money.
But you don't need money to do that - not if you have a friend over there who will let you stay in his house, eat his food and take you around in exchange for your labor on his house... Spending money instead of bartering is so not badass...
Bartering is EXACTLY the same as spending money... There is ZERO difference between me working for $5000, then spending it on a trip to Greece, or me doing some work directly for someone in exchange for a trip to Greece.

And that's the only issue I have with MMM... He's NOT living a 25k lifestyle... People living a 25k lifestyle do not get to go to Greece or Hawaii. He is indeed living very frugally, and could still be an inspiration to people without having to do fuzzy math. He claims living on 25k a year for decades is a great life... I say he doesn't really know if it is, since he's living a higher standard of living than that.

The man makes decent money, doing what he loves... Nothing wrong with him spending 30k or gasp.. 40k a year on a few luxuries or experiences for his family.. I have a small problem with him living a 35k lifestyle and telling everyone how great a 25k lifestyle is. Other than that, I think he does a lot of good.
Who cares what dollar amount lifestyle he leads if it doesn't cost him money? I travel using hotel points, FF miles and other travel hacks. So I spend $X on travel but the 'market rate' of my travel is $X + Y. Does that mean my budget isn't valid?

-Steph
So, if instead of paying you a salary your employer bought all the goods and services you wanted throughout the year would that be the same as living on a $0 budget? If you then went around building a following off the notion that its possible for everyone to live off a $0 budget, would that be honest?
I don't think it's apples to apples when you're talking about an employer. Let's suppose I make $50k/yr and have a housing budget of $700/mo. I have a friend who has an unused McMansion so I stay there so the house is occupied and pay $700/mo vs the $1700/mo market rate. Is it honest to say I live off $50k/yr and $700/mo for housing but live in a mansion? I think it is, provided I fully disclose the arrangement with my friend. However, it will be obvious to anyone that I am able to 'afford' better housing than others due to the friendship but it would still be possible to get housing for $700/mo, just not as nice. That's the way I see Mr. MMM. I think he would still live off his $25k/yr if he didn't barter or have connections. He would just live a scaled back lifestyle.

People seem to take issue with the fact that he lives 'better' than the $25k/yr he's spending. I think that's a bit of a red herring because he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. The entire point (from what I've read) of his blog is that you don't have to spend a bunch of money to live a nice life and you should value life/experiences/whatever over consumerism and status quo.

-Steph
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by KyleAAA »

SRenaeP wrote: I don't think it's apples to apples when you're talking about an employer. Let's suppose I make $50k/yr and have a housing budget of $700/mo. I have a friend who has an unused McMansion so I stay there so the house is occupied and pay $700/mo vs the $1700/mo market rate. Is it honest to say I live off $50k/yr and $700/mo for housing but live in a mansion? I think it is, provided I fully disclose the arrangement with my friend. However, it will be obvious to anyone that I am able to 'afford' better housing than others due to the friendship but it would still be possible to get housing for $700/mo, just not as nice. That's the way I see Mr. MMM. I think he would still live off his $25k/yr if he didn't barter or have connections. He would just live a scaled back lifestyle.

People seem to take issue with the fact that he lives 'better' than the $25k/yr he's spending. I think that's a bit of a red herring because he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. The entire point (from what I've read) of his blog is that you don't have to spend a bunch of money to live a nice life and you should value life/experiences/whatever over consumerism and status quo.

-Steph
If your friend wants to gift you $1,000 in free housing per month, that's there business and you would be 100% justified saying your budget was $700 month even without disclosing the arrangement with your friend. But that's not the argument anybody is making. The argument is that if you agreed to, say, do your friend's lawn-care in exchange for $1000 per month off your housing costs, that is exactly identical to just paying the $1700 to begin with and it would be a lie to say your housing budget is $700 per month. It's not.

In your example, MMM doesn't live off $25k/yr because he is bartering with others. Trading labor is exactly the same as trading money for something, which is why the IRS treats barter exchanges as taxable income just like everything else. It's not a red herring at all because it's irrelevant whether or not he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. So could I. So could most people. But I'm not, and neither is he. The only difference is I'm providing labor to my employer and paying cash for those goods and services and he is providing labor to people besides and employer in lieu of cash. Either way, it is the value of our labor that we live on, not how much actual cash we spend.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by ThatGuy »

This made me do some quick back of envelope math.

The median household income is $53,046. Medicare takes out 1.5%, Social Security 6.2%, and let's call median Federal Income tax at 6%. MMM does not pay any of this, nor does he even talk about paying taxes other than property tax in his $25,000 budget.

53,049 * (1 - (0.015 + 0.062 + 0.06) ) = $45,781.29

Lop off another $12,000 for housing costs. $33,781.29.

MMM doesn't pay child care, or much in the way of gas, and his property taxes are really really low at $2,517. I'd say he's spending more than the median American is on living, and he doesn't count things like a Hawaiian trip for his whole family for weeks because he bartered his labor for it.

I applaud MMM for figuring out what makes him happy at a young age. I applaud that he optimizes his time and money to live the life he wants. But he not only says he's retired when he's not, he uses bad math to get to his 'retirement' numbers, and then artificially discounts his expenditures, and tries to make it seem like all Americans spend waaaay more than he does.

I have issues with the deception.


For what it's worth, if you take out mortgage costs, child care, cut gas to $1,000 a year (fat chance with Bay Area gas prices), cut property tax, and income tax, then I could live on $25,000 easily. I assume so could most bogleheads.
Last edited by ThatGuy on Thu Apr 10, 2014 3:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by SRenaeP »

KyleAAA wrote:
SRenaeP wrote: I don't think it's apples to apples when you're talking about an employer. Let's suppose I make $50k/yr and have a housing budget of $700/mo. I have a friend who has an unused McMansion so I stay there so the house is occupied and pay $700/mo vs the $1700/mo market rate. Is it honest to say I live off $50k/yr and $700/mo for housing but live in a mansion? I think it is, provided I fully disclose the arrangement with my friend. However, it will be obvious to anyone that I am able to 'afford' better housing than others due to the friendship but it would still be possible to get housing for $700/mo, just not as nice. That's the way I see Mr. MMM. I think he would still live off his $25k/yr if he didn't barter or have connections. He would just live a scaled back lifestyle.

People seem to take issue with the fact that he lives 'better' than the $25k/yr he's spending. I think that's a bit of a red herring because he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. The entire point (from what I've read) of his blog is that you don't have to spend a bunch of money to live a nice life and you should value life/experiences/whatever over consumerism and status quo.

-Steph
If your friend wants to gift you $1,000 in free housing per month, that's there business and you would be 100% justified saying your budget was $700 month even without disclosing the arrangement with your friend. But that's not the argument anybody is making. The argument is that if you agreed to, say, do your friend's lawn-care in exchange for $1000 per month off your housing costs, that is exactly identical to just paying the $1700 to begin with and it would be a lie to say your housing budget is $700 per month. It's not.

In your example, MMM doesn't live off $25k/yr because he is bartering with others. Trading labor is exactly the same as trading money for something, which is why the IRS treats barter exchanges as taxable income just like everything else. It's not a red herring at all because it's irrelevant whether or not he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. So could I. So could most people. But I'm not, and neither is he. The only difference is I'm providing labor to my employer and paying cash for those goods and services and he is providing labor to people besides and employer in lieu of cash. Either way, it is the value of our labor that we live on, not how much actual cash we spend.
Actually I don't think that's true from an IRS point of view. A quick look at the IRS site implies that it's not bartering if it's informal exchange of services on a non-commercial basis. So for your first example, it's not bartering if I'm not a landscaper/lawn care guy. It's just a friend giving me a discount in exchange for helping them out. Otherwise, my friends would need to report as taxable income the beer and pizza I bought for them when they helped me move. I will say the IRS might consider what MMM did as barter since he used to work in construction IIRC.

All that said, I think he makes some good points that others would do well to heed. Of course, everything doesn't apply to everyone but it's a good start to changing one's mindset. As with all other 'gurus' (Dave Ramsey, etc.), I say take what you need and leave the rest :-)

-Steph
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Mr. FI »

I actually think many on this forum are missing the point. The point is not "how can I exactly replicate MMM's spending AND go to Hawaii AND live in a $400,000 house?" The point is, he can live on $25,000 whether he gets freebies or not. He doesn't need to go to Hawaii, he just has. Being industrious has its advantages. Having carpentry skill has afforded him some nice opportunities, so I would be fooling myself thinking I can replicate buying a $400,000 house and make a month long trip to Hawaii on that budget. And I believe he has alluded to such.

The point is, when you don't let consumerism run your life, and you're industrious, and think differently than the rest of society, you can benefit in a myriad of ways, one of which is financial independence.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Devil's Advocate »

If your friend wants to gift you $1,000 in free housing per month, that's there business and you would be 100% justified saying your budget was $700 month even without disclosing the arrangement with your friend. But that's not the argument anybody is making. The argument is that if you agreed to, say, do your friend's lawn-care in exchange for $1000 per month off your housing costs, that is exactly identical to just paying the $1700 to begin with and it would be a lie to say your housing budget is $700 per month. It's not.

In your example, MMM doesn't live off $25k/yr because he is bartering with others. Trading labor is exactly the same as trading money for something, which is why the IRS treats barter exchanges as taxable income just like everything else. It's not a red herring at all because it's irrelevant whether or not he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. So could I. So could most people. But I'm not, and neither is he. The only difference is I'm providing labor to my employer and paying cash for those goods and services and he is providing labor to people besides and employer in lieu of cash. Either way, it is the value of our labor that we live on, not how much actual cash we spend.
+1

Even if the IRS doesn't consider bartering income what difference does it make? He is trading labor (currency) for something.

MMM suggests diversifying one's talents to become self sustaining. I don't mind that he enjoys carpentry and what not. However I don't really enjoy that type of labor and with my specialized training can make ~$100/hr. I would rather work one hour to pay a laborer for 4 of their's. Plus it would most likely take me LONGER to do their task which would cost me more life energy...

DA
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Clearly_Irrational »

Mr. FI wrote:The point is, when you don't let consumerism run your life, and you're industrious, and think differently than the rest of society, you can benefit in a myriad of ways, one of which is financial independence.
Except he's not financially independent, he's self employed, there's a difference.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by 3CT_Paddler »

ThatGuy wrote:This made me do some quick back of envelope math.

The median household income is $53,046. Medicare takes out 1.5%, Social Security 6.2%, and let's call median Federal Income tax at 6%. MMM does not pay any of this, nor does he even talk about paying taxes other than property tax in his $25,000 budget.

53,049 * (1 - (0.015 + 0.062 + 0.06) ) = $45,781.29

Lop off another $12,000 for housing costs. $33,781.29.

MMM doesn't pay child care, or much in the way of gas, and his property taxes are really really low at $2,517. I'd say he's spending more than the median American is on living, and he doesn't count things like a Hawaiian trip for his whole family for weeks because he bartered his labor for it.

I applaud MMM for figuring out what makes him happy at a young age. I applaud that he optimizes his time and money to live the life he wants. But he not only says he's retired when he's not, he uses bad math to get to his 'retirement' numbers, and then artificially discounts his expenditures, and tries to make it seem like all Americans spend waaaay more than he does.

I have issues with the deception.


For what it's worth, if you take out mortgage costs, child care, cut gas to $1,000 a year (fat chance with Bay Area gas prices), cut property tax, and income tax, then I could live on $25,000 easily. I assume so could most bogleheads.
Great job of running the numbers. When you actually do a side comparison his numbers are about 25% lower than what the median household operates on. That doesn't sound so radical after all. Nothing to sneeze at but certainly not radical. And that is neglecting all the perks that he accrues along the way.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by ThatGuy »

It also ignores any saving that goes on for retirement, or the employer payment of Medicare and Social Security, etc. The big one, however, is child care. Even assuming a monthly cost of $800 for one child, which is unheard of in my area, would run $9,600 per year. Simply adding that in means MMM spends more than the median American.

The point of this is not to replicate the MMM budget exactly, only to show that his numbers really aren't radical at all. In fact, they're rather ordinary once you get rid of all work related expenses.
Last edited by ThatGuy on Thu Apr 10, 2014 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Devil's Advocate »

Don't penalize MMM b/c he has a paid off home in his 30s.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by HomerJ »

SRenaeP wrote:People seem to take issue with the fact that he lives 'better' than the $25k/yr he's spending. I think that's a bit of a red herring because he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr.
Well, heck I could live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on 25k too... Can I start a blog and talk about how I DO live on just 25k a year even though I actually live on 72k a year? Is knowing I "could" live on 25k a year enough for me to claim to the world that I DO live on 25k?
The entire point (from what I've read) of his blog is that you don't have to spend a bunch of money to live a nice life and you should value life/experiences/whatever over consumerism and status quo.
Yeah I see that... I like that part... Maybe I shouldn't get so hung up on his fuzzy math.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by LadyGeek »

This thread has run its course and is locked (several off-topic subjects, thread has lost focus, no added value to continue). See: Forum Policy
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by LadyGeek »

After receiving a PM, I'll let the thread continue. Please stay on-topic, this thread is unlocked.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Mr. FI »

Clearly_Irrational wrote:
Mr. FI wrote:The point is, when you don't let consumerism run your life, and you're industrious, and think differently than the rest of society, you can benefit in a myriad of ways, one of which is financial independence.
Except he's not financially independent, he's self employed, there's a difference.
But he has stated, numerous times, that he could triple his spending, stop doing side jobs, and have enough money to last until he's dead. That's financial independence. He chooses to earn some money, because he likes to work on houses, etc. but he doesn't need it. No one employs him, he doesn't rely on that income. I rely on my income and my wife's income. He has the luxury of closing up shop, heading to a beach, and never moving and being fine. He doesn't want to do that, but there is a big difference. We could keep going with these semantics, but the mod has spoken and I am afraid this is what led the moderator to briefly end the thread.

I'll leave it here.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Clearly_Irrational »

Mr. FI wrote:But he has stated, numerous times, that he could triple his spending, stop doing side jobs, and have enough money to last until he's dead. That's financial independence.
I agree, that would be financial independence. I did find this quote "All in all, we are now at a point where we could probably triple our annual spending forever, without running out of money." but he didn't say anything about not doing any work. I admit I'm not a regular reader, though I have enjoyed some of his posts previously.

As of three years ago he said his net worth was $800k including at least one rental house and "it might be 20% 401k, 10% taxable stock accounts, 70% real estate right now". So at that time he would have had passive income of around $24,400 a year or so (ignoring 401k money due to tax penalties, 2.5% on taxable and 4% on real estate). So if his $25,182 budget for 2013 is complete then yeah he's probably good on an after tax basis just barely.

Ok, I take it back, he probably is financially independent.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by hoppy08520 »

ThatGuy wrote:For what it's worth, if you take out mortgage costs, child care, cut gas to $1,000 a year (fat chance with Bay Area gas prices), cut property tax, and income tax, then I could live on $25,000 easily. I assume so could most bogleheads.
I'm hearing some scoffing regarding his $25K annual expenses, saying "regular people" can't do that because of mortgages, FICA, commuting, etc. Don't forgot his life insurance bill, by the way--he doesn't have one because he self-insures. That's another $500 - $1000 of annual savings that "regular" working stiffs are saddled with.

This is really the crux of MMM's magic secret that he tries to share. It's not just compounding that allows him to "retire" early -- it's that early retirement can also help suppress expenses -- the two go hand in hand.

When I first got on my MMM kick a couple of years ago, I really scoured our budget to see where we could cut, but I couldn't fathom how I could get down to $25K of annual spending. I felt trapped by so many of the fixed costs that MMM doesn't have. Once you have that big nest egg, then you can in parallel suppress your ongoing expenses that working stiffs incur, including:
  • commuting
  • day care
  • mortgage (assuming you paid it off)
  • life insurance - you can self insure
  • FICA
  • expensive "conveniences" that working people "need" to get by (home cleaning, wardrobe, dry cleaning, carry-out food, etc.)
  • Extra groceries - you have the time to garden so you don't have to buy as much
  • etc.
The only way to get over the hump of those fixed expenses is to save so radically--and early--that you can make them go away. That's tough to do and I give him a lot of credit for doing it.

There's really nothing magic about this except the fact that he did it in such an extreme way, and so early in his life. If you spend 99¢ of every $1.00 you make, then you'll work forever or until you hit Social Security age. But if you can spend a tiny amount, like 25¢ of every $1.00, then maybe you're home free in 10-15 years. I'm hoping to land somewhere in the middle.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by freddie »

It is sort of a cross debate. He is only spending 25k/yr but is living a 50k life because he prepaid expenses (i.e. the house) and because of unearned income they pays less in taxes (no SS) and has 80 hours/wk to spend on doing things that cost time in order to save money.

It isn't just compounding or frugality alone that allowed him to retire early. Those are only half the equation It is the fact that they had a top ~5% income which makes the early retirement possible while living a middle class life. Bump that spending up 10k and your talking another 3-4 years of working. Drop the income to the median family income of like 54k, and they might have been running up credit card debt to maintain that same lifestyle

Personally I am not that familiar with the hyper consumerism that everyone seems to think is so prevalent. Pretty much everywhere I have lived it is only 1 or 2 couples out of 20 that live like that. The rest might not be super frugal but they are living with in their means and saving for retirement (not at the 50% level but 10-15%). Obviously YMMV with that but I get a feeling that most of the people on the board are like reformed smokers: You get a lot of the people that used spend like crazy (or they just chose to marry those people:)) and have now swung to the opposite side of the fence.

hoppy08520 wrote:
ThatGuy wrote:For what it's worth, if you take out mortgage costs, child care, cut gas to $1,000 a year (fat chance with Bay Area gas prices), cut property tax, and income tax, then I could live on $25,000 easily. I assume so could most bogleheads.
I'm hearing some scoffing regarding his $25K annual expenses, saying "regular people" can't do that because of mortgages, FICA, commuting, etc. Don't forgot his life insurance bill, by the way--he doesn't have one because he self-insures. That's another $500 - $1000 of annual savings that "regular" working stiffs are saddled with.

This is really the crux of MMM's magic secret that he tries to share. It's not just compounding that allows him to "retire" early -- it's that early retirement can also help suppress expenses -- the two go hand in hand.

When I first got on my MMM kick a couple of years ago, I really scoured our budget to see where we could cut, but I couldn't fathom how I could get down to $25K of annual spending. I felt trapped by so many of the fixed costs that MMM doesn't have. Once you have that big nest egg, then you can in parallel suppress your ongoing expenses that working stiffs incur, including:
  • commuting
  • day care
  • mortgage (assuming you paid it off)
  • life insurance - you can self insure
  • FICA
  • expensive "conveniences" that working people "need" to get by (home cleaning, wardrobe, dry cleaning, carry-out food, etc.)
  • Extra groceries - you have the time to garden so you don't have to buy as much
  • etc.
The only way to get over the hump of those fixed expenses is to save so radically--and early--that you can make them go away. That's tough to do and I give him a lot of credit for doing it.

There's really nothing magic about this except the fact that he did it in such an extreme way, and so early in his life. If you spend 99¢ of every $1.00 you make, then you'll work forever or until you hit Social Security age. But if you can spend a tiny amount, like 25¢ of every $1.00, then maybe you're home free in 10-15 years. I'm hoping to land somewhere in the middle.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by LadyGeek »

I removed a few off-topic posts (poetry discussion), some continuity is lost. Please stay on-topic.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by KyleAAA »

SRenaeP wrote:
Actually I don't think that's true from an IRS point of view. A quick look at the IRS site implies that it's not bartering if it's informal exchange of services on a non-commercial basis. So for your first example, it's not bartering if I'm not a landscaper/lawn care guy. It's just a friend giving me a discount in exchange for helping them out. Otherwise, my friends would need to report as taxable income the beer and pizza I bought for them when they helped me move. I will say the IRS might consider what MMM did as barter since he used to work in construction IIRC.
I suspect the IRS would consider it to be a commercial basis in this situation since it would be baked into the lease and not just a one-off. But regardless of whether or not the IRS considers it taxable, it doesn't change the basic argument: it's trading labor for goods and services.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by avalpert »

SRenaeP wrote:
I don't think it's apples to apples when you're talking about an employer. Let's suppose I make $50k/yr and have a housing budget of $700/mo. I have a friend who has an unused McMansion so I stay there so the house is occupied and pay $700/mo vs the $1700/mo market rate. Is it honest to say I live off $50k/yr and $700/mo for housing but live in a mansion? I think it is, provided I fully disclose the arrangement with my friend. However, it will be obvious to anyone that I am able to 'afford' better housing than others due to the friendship but it would still be possible to get housing for $700/mo, just not as nice. That's the way I see Mr. MMM. I think he would still live off his $25k/yr if he didn't barter or have connections. He would just live a scaled back lifestyle.

People seem to take issue with the fact that he lives 'better' than the $25k/yr he's spending. I think that's a bit of a red herring because he could still live a perfectly reasonable lifestyle on $25k/yr. The entire point (from what I've read) of his blog is that you don't have to spend a bunch of money to live a nice life and you should value life/experiences/whatever over consumerism and status quo.

-Steph
In addition to what Kyle said (and even informal bartering income is taxable - I think you got confused by their definition of a 'bartering exchange' but that is not a necessary component of a bartering arrangement that is taxable, see Publication 525 for bartering examples) I think it would be perfectly fair to say that is what you do but it becomes extremely dishonest to then preach that as an attainable lifestyle for all when you really mean it is an attainable lifestyle for all who happen to have friends that need Mansion-sitters.

So yeah, he didn't NEED to go to Hawaii and he could have lived his life without it but it is much easier to live life without when you still GET to go to Hawaii and it is disingenuous to then say how easy it is to do without when you yourself don't actually do without - even though you could have, because you know you didn't.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by tfb »

KyleAAA wrote:
Ivygirl wrote:He [J.D. Roth] was one of us until he got money. Then he began to think, "Oh my, I've mopped myself into a corner here, all these people are looking to me but I don't want to be their guru anymore. I want to go and be rich. I want to enjoy what I have earned in my own way without having to conform to their expectations of me. And I - don't feel that I can tell them. I mean they love me. What could I say to them?" He was in a position of hypocrisy for a time, simply because the whole situation had changed, and he knew it but his readers didn't. The same thing may happen to Mr. MM.
Well to be fair, he was already quite rich well before he sold the blog. It's not like it was earning pennies before the sale. It's been a while since I've checked out MMM's blog, but there's no doubt he could pretty much immediately start generating a healthy 6-figure income with all that traffic if he wanted to. Maybe he already is. By the time these people get to the point where they have a lot of followers, they are already earning big bucks whether they've sold or not. But that doesn't really invalidate their message. JD's message was to spend less than you make, stay out of debt, and invest for the future. Well, he can do that just as well making $500,000 per year as $50,000 per year. The only difference is how much he's saving.
This is true. A typical valuation is 3x the net revenue. The blog was reported to have been sold for $3 million. Given the popularity of J.D.'s blog, even at 6x means it was bringing in $500k per year. At this level of valuation or income, MMM's statement about tripling his expenses, stopping doing construction and still not running out of money is quite true.
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Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by avalpert »

freddie wrote:
Personally I am not that familiar with the hyper consumerism that everyone seems to think is so prevalent. Pretty much everywhere I have lived it is only 1 or 2 couples out of 20 that live like that. The rest might not be super frugal but they are living with in their means and saving for retirement (not at the 50% level but 10-15%). Obviously YMMV with that but I get a feeling that most of the people on the board are like reformed smokers: You get a lot of the people that used spend like crazy (or they just chose to marry those people:)) and have now swung to the opposite side of the fence.
There is probably a lot of truth in that. I basically had the opposite journey, it took me a while to recognize that not fretting over every penny spent made me happier and healthier (and of course it helps that I can afford it with no real concern about my short or long term financial health). Which is why what really bugs me the most about MMM is not his exaggerating his true lifestyle to keep the public persona in tact but the insistence that this fake public persona has the one true set of values right and if you don't share those values you are wrong and not as happy as you could be. I had those values in the past and they did make me happier than I am now - that doesn't mean he isn't right for him, but the cult that he has built around those values is no healthier than any other cult and probably has done real damage to some other people for whom those values were never right.
Scandium
Posts: 57
Joined: Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:05 am

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Scandium »

Ivygirl wrote:For me money is primarily a moral problem. Once I grasped that Mr. MM could not really help me with the main thing I needed to solve, I released him so to speak as my "potential guru" and was free to visit his site occasionally to see what he was up to next and pick up great tips on which cheap boxed wine is the best, without trying to load on him some universal gravitas or something.

Personally I believe that the love of money really is the root of all kinds of evil. That puts me in a tough spot in life. Whatever else I may do with money, I may never, never love it. To accumulate a giant pile of money over a period of years - well, that's a risk. I might start loving my hoard like a dragon. It might change me and make me mutter, "My Precious." Scary stuff. At the same time I have an obligation to take care of myself in the future when I can no longer work and that involves getting together a small fortune. The Bogleheads philosophy is attractive to me because it is consistent with morality while effectively solving the practical problem of accumulation. No cheating, no gaming the system, no disadvantaging anyone else, no dodgy schemes, no lottery. It requires a high standard of self-knowledge, self-control, and, yes, humility. Own all the markets - because you are not in control, and don't kid yourself you are.

Mr. MM's philosophy would not preclude someone from deliberately holding down their gross income so that he or she could get a healthcare subsidy at the cost of other taxpayers, all the while having hundreds of thousands in the bank. It's legal of course but a rich person should not be subsidized by those less well off, who may be struggling themselves. That would be the side of the line I come down on. So I like the guy and I like his philosophy, as far as it goes, but it is too small for me. It can't be mine. I am afraid it would distort my personality to follow it too closely and I really would love my money.

Personally I think everybody should sometimes do the equivalent of lighting a cigar with a $100 bill. Just to show money what you think of it. Pah! Money. I am your master! :P
Maybe it's just me, but I think you're reading a little too much into this, MMM or money in general. He blogs about efficient living, with a somewhat abrasive attitude. That's it. I don't quite understand who his "enemies" are that will "cause his downfall"? :? You mean people will stop reading his blog? I think he'd be fine..

I don't believe in evil, or that money has any power over us. We make our own decisions about it, and MMM is just one source of input about it. He can be entertaining and offer some ideas, good or bad. That's all it really is.
Ivygirl
Posts: 375
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2014 1:36 pm

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Ivygirl »

Scandium wrote: Maybe it's just me, but I think you're reading a little too much into this, MMM or money in general. He blogs about efficient living, with a somewhat abrasive attitude...

I don't believe in evil, or that money has any power over us. We make our own decisions about it, and MMM is just one source of input about it. He can be entertaining and offer some ideas, good or bad. That's all it really is.
There is something you are not accounting for, Scandium. That is "the fictive dream." I'm sure that literary critics have a real name for it, but that is what I call it. The fictive dream is induced when someone makes you a promise of an intriguing or exciting story. "Listen to me, and I will tell you something wonderful." "Read this, and I will take you on an imaginative journey into Oz." "Come with me, and I will take you along The Way of the Mustachian, and show you everything there is to see in this wild and wonderful place."

Have you ever thrown a book across the room because the mystery novelist withheld a vital clue, and cheated you out of your chance to unmask the murderer yourself? Have you ever walked out of a movie because it wasted your time with tedious characters and unlikely plot? Have you ever closed a newspaper in disgust because of a story about a politician, who promised well, and seemed to deliver, but was revealed as just another scummy little huckster? Your anger was caused by the breaking of the fictive dream. If you've never felt that anger - well, you had better check your pulse. You're too calm, and you might be dead.

Bloggers deliberately induce the fictive dream in their readers. They count on it. Idle clicks do not build a blog, dedicated readers who keep coming back do. Bloggers fan the flames of the fictive dream in their readers' imaginations on purpose to induce a sense of intimacy, belonging, and buy-in. Then they turn it into cash.

All is OK so long as the fictive dream is maintained, people know they have to pay for their enjoyment, it doesn't make them mad when an author or actor or televangelist or blogger makes money. But if the fictive dream is betrayed, if the promise is not kept, the awakening is very unpleasant for the dreamer.
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Wildebeest
Posts: 1204
Joined: Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:36 pm

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

Post by Wildebeest »

Ivygirl wrote:
Scandium wrote: Maybe it's just me, but I think you're reading a little too much into this, MMM or money in general. He blogs about efficient living, with a somewhat abrasive attitude...

I don't believe in evil, or that money has any power over us. We make our own decisions about it, and MMM is just one source of input about it. He can be entertaining and offer some ideas, good or bad. That's all it really is.
There is something you are not accounting for, Scandium. That is "the fictive dream." I'm sure that literary critics have a real name for it, but that is what I call it. The fictive dream is induced when someone makes you a promise of an intriguing or exciting story. "Listen to me, and I will tell you something wonderful." "Read this, and I will take you on an imaginative journey into Oz." "Come with me, and I will take you along The Way of the Mustachian, and show you everything there is to see in this wild and wonderful place."

Have you ever thrown a book across the room because the mystery novelist withheld a vital clue, and cheated you out of your chance to unmask the murderer yourself? Have you ever walked out of a movie because it wasted your time with tedious characters and unlikely plot? Have you ever closed a newspaper in disgust because of a story about a politician, who promised well, and seemed to deliver, but was revealed as just another scummy little huckster? Your anger was caused by the breaking of the fictive dream. If you've never felt that anger - well, you had better check your pulse. You're too calm, and you might be dead.

Bloggers deliberately induce the fictive dream in their readers. They count on it. Idle clicks do not build a blog, dedicated readers who keep coming back do. Bloggers fan the flames of the fictive dream in their readers' imaginations on purpose to induce a sense of intimacy, belonging, and buy-in. Then they turn it into cash.

All is OK so long as the fictive dream is maintained, people know they have to pay for their enjoyment, it doesn't make them mad when an author or actor or televangelist or blogger makes money. But if the fictive dream is betrayed, if the promise is not kept, the awakening is very unpleasant for the dreamer.
I love the "fictive dream" and the whole picture Ivygirl creates and how she draws me in. This is what I meant to say if I had the words.
The Golden Rule: One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.
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