It's certainly possible - even easy - to live on less than $30K a year in many areas.
You know, I honestly think I can live off half that if I curb my restaurant habits and don't travel abroad frequently. I don't have a mortgage because I paid cash...so the most expensive monthly cost is...uhh,food? After that, it's probably the HOA fees. It's all about spending priorities. In a decade, maybe health insurance is the highest line item, but if that's the case, I have to imagine my investments will inflate in value along with the increased costs of insurance....or a decade from now there could be a medicare type program for everybody. I'm not going to make life choices based on what might or might not happen.
I can entertain myself with spending very little $$$. I can spend nothing on TV and get tons of channels or I can spend an extra $30/mo for all the channels I would want. With music, a subscription to a streaming service is in the single digits per month. I can enjoy the outdoors for free. I used to think it was extreme, but now that I live that life, it's my normal.
Aside from all that, though, is the reality, that I'm not going to be spending down my assets with zero income coming in other than mutual fund dividends for the next 30 years. I've actually pursued auto and home insurance. What I like about working on commission with a fat savings accounts is I cna literally do this part time and I'll be ok. If I'm covering my costs and making some $$, Cool beans.
My problem with the 9-5 isn't the requirement of performing labor for compensation, it's that I have to do it for 40 hours each week every week less a few vacations days. There are so many other ways to make $$$ and maybe they are more risky in the long term, but I'm ok with that.
I don't call myself retired or financially independent, i'm just a willing unemployed guy whose taking it easy and taking some risks. If I get married and have kids, I would have to radically change my plans, but I'm living the life that I have been dealt today with plenty of investments built up for a very later tomorrow.
If I can't take some risks, nobody can.
My goal for 2018 is basically to earn enough profit from entrepreneurship and side gigs to cover my expenses. If I do that every year, I don't tap the portfolio. The whole point is that I can generate income spending less time to do it. The hourly rate is much higher, it's just not necessarily as scaleable.
Someone mentioned that it would be hard to get a $60/hr job. I never had a $60/hr job in the first place. It sounds to me that the The $60/hr career are just another form of golden handcuffs. The highest i was paid was roughly $35/hr. I guess going from $35/hr to $15 hr in an apocalyptic scenario just isn't as much of a big deal.