Author Topic: MMM Hate  (Read 11400 times)

Seadog

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MMM Hate
« on: January 10, 2019, 09:33:00 AM »
Since the divorce, MMM has popped up on a few of the other blogs I frequent with varying degrees of awareness. Much like many MSM articles that allow comments, the misinformation, assumptions, and straight up lies about what he is or is not is shocking. People aren't educated, and don't want to be educated. Several pages of people arguing whether he's retired or not. "He run a blog. It makes money. Not retired. QED". "He eats catfood, never travels or does anything fun, just sits in his home alone counting dollars"

What causes this? Why is this subject so bloody controversial and bringing out the worst in so many people? Why do people go out of their way to remain ignorant, and discount what he says, by straight up twisting it to fit whatever biases they have? 

Cromacster

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2019, 09:40:29 AM »
Russian trolls bought and paid to keep the masses focused on consumerism is my guess.

Aka I know nothing

aka people suck sometimes

Don't read the comments!

ThatGuy

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2019, 09:48:24 AM »
Jealousy.

rantk81

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2019, 09:50:40 AM »
Stop caring about what other people think?  Opinions are like assholes -- everyone has one.

Seadog

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2019, 10:11:11 AM »
I know it's true that I shouldn't waste time arguing with people over the internet who I'll never meet, and may even intentionally be trying to wind me up, yet part of me simply cannot allow ignorance and misinformation to flourish like that.

No different than when you see people proclaiming from the roof tops about the flat earth, Saudi gov't people proclaiming women only have 1/4 of a brain, African tribal leaders saying that polio vaccines are giving people AIDS, or varying degrees of religious nut jobs who's customs require them to manhandle the corpse of someone who just died from Ebola. If you're acting like a retarded chimp, there are direct consequences to people around you, society, and ultimately in a marginal sense myself and others I care about.

bbates728

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2019, 10:14:31 AM »
I hear you on the negativity. It does seem to be pervasive.

I try and empathize with people before anything else; I like to look at  things from their perspectives. It is possible that these people are Russian Trolls or any other popular conspiracy theory floating about, but using Occam's Razor, I choose to believe that it is something simpler.

Let's take a look at where these people are most likely coming from.

Most people see FIRE as something unattainable in their current situation. FIRE seems like something that would take $1-3 million depending on the sacrifices people are willing to get. Hell, this isn't even THAT far off base. My number for instance is between $1-1.5 million. Many people have trouble paying for an extra few hundred dollars in an emergency. This is a huge discrepancy in expectations.

Enter MMM who we all know and love. He is coming out and saying that everyone can do this while having made a pretty good amount (breeding resentment from much of the population). Further, he challenges us to cut some basic luxuries like the cost of commuting, cable, A/C, etc. It makes it seem like FIRE is only for those of us that are willing to deprive ourselves in an impressively extreme, spartan style.

Now this popular figure goes through a life change that many people categorize as a failure and it is obvious why there is such vitriol. This person who has been telling others how to live their lives is having struggles that MUST be because of the deprivation that he is putting his family through. It is obvious that if THEY had forced THEIR significant other to no longer enjoy the mobility of a vehicle or the benefits of A/C or the decompression that TV brings, THEY too would be divorced. It shows that this lifestyle is unsustainable. It gives people a reason why they haven't achieved the $1-3 million pipedream that has been preached. They simply value their family too much to risk it just to be "lazy" and retire.

Our lifestyle goals on this sub run counter to the very fabric of this nation's working and middle classes. Don't be surprised when people lash out after we have challenged the status quo.



That being said, I do think that this is completely uncalled for as no one's personal life should be attacked by people who don't even know the situation. It shows a lack of class/tact and is completely ridiculous. Pete has my warmest sympathies (Pete, if you read this and are ever in Seattle, let me know and you will get free beer and food. You have helped me tremendously, please reach out if I can help in any way).

I am sure this has been unthinkably difficult to go through and I sincerely hope that they both come out of this unscathed. I just want to help shed light as to why this may be happening.

Cheers,

CNM

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2019, 10:29:04 AM »
I see this a lot with any blogger/youtuber/writer who presents self-improvement content.  Even innocuous things, like "how a busy parent of 5 cuts grocery expenses" are subject to scathing, personal attacks. 

It's because inherent to this sort of advice is that what the person (i.e. the consumer of the self-improvement content) is currently doing is wrong.  So of course MMM gets blow back because he's saying that the average Western person is a sucker for doing what almost all Western people do- drive a lot, buy a bunch of shit they don't need, excessively outsource things, and otherwise try to keep up superficial appearances.  The average Western person, therefore, gets angry and makes up excuses to justify keeping the status quo.

mm1970

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2019, 10:39:34 AM »
I see this a lot with any blogger/youtuber/writer who presents self-improvement content.  Even innocuous things, like "how a busy parent of 5 cuts grocery expenses" are subject to scathing, personal attacks. 

It's because inherent to this sort of advice is that what the person (i.e. the consumer of the self-improvement content) is currently doing is wrong.  So of course MMM gets blow back because he's saying that the average Western person is a sucker for doing what almost all Western people do- drive a lot, buy a bunch of shit they don't need, excessively outsource things, and otherwise try to keep up superficial appearances.  The average Western person, therefore, gets angry and makes up excuses to justify keeping the status quo.
People are often VERY resistant to any ideas that don't agree with their world view.  It's human nature I guess.

nereo

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2019, 11:02:04 AM »
The comment sections in many corners of the internet can be a cesspool or humanity's worst traits.  Anonymity allows people to say whatever vile thing they want, and informed, researched opinions get the same weight as wild speculation or outright lies (i.e. both will get published).

The FIRE community has always faced a great deal of skepticism. I suspect many want the kind of lifstyle that MMM has enjoyed, and so they take delight in pointing out how he has unfair advantages (the blog income!!) or take joy in any of his misfortunes (schadenfreude).  Since many have very litttle in savings and lots of debt they'd rather poke holes in MMM's story to explain why they, too, are not FI than actually undertake the steps necessary to become wealthy (namely spend less that they earn and stop doing stupid shit with money).

I see parallels with how people view physical health.  Most are either overweight or obese, and there's a lot of shade thrown at people who are much healthier.  Most of it is just masked excuses for why they arent' doing what they know they should ("I have a naturally low metabolism" - "I work too hard to have any time to exercise" - "he/she's clearly has an eating disorder" - "working out everyday, hello vanity!").  It gets even more pathetic and vitriolic when you listen to how many talk about professional athletes ("I could make that shot" - "s/he isn't trying" - "I could be that good if someone paid me to train all year long" - "s/he's just naturally talented").  Vile.

Swinging back to MMM few of these negative commenters even both to learn more than the headlines in the many articles written about him (one such title was "live like a cheapskate and you can quit your job in your 30s!"). Many have attributed their divorce to his 'extreme frugalness' - even though she has her own frugal nature - and has written about it in guest-posts.  Others assume that he was the sole bread-winner (he wasn't) and will have to cash out his savings and go back to his 'real' job (unlikely, given their fortunes and spend-rates).  I occasionally try to correct some of the misperceptions, but when the writers of the comments are making these posts as excuses to why they aren't masters of their own finances it's like farting into a hurricane.

Zikoris

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2019, 11:09:39 AM »
I imagine some of it comes from the fact that it's a hard pill to swallow - to recognize that if you'd done things differently you could be rich and retired already, but instead you'll be working until you die. I think that's one of the biggest advantages those of us who started this thing young have - we don't really have to deal with that as much. Like, I could theoretically be retired now at 32 if I'd started at 18, but the reality will be more like 34-35, which I'm totally fine with. But it would suck to be starting at 35+ and have a long way to go still, while people your age are FIRE-ing around you.

Dances With Fire

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2019, 11:18:09 AM »
I see this a lot with any blogger/youtuber/writer who presents self-improvement content.  Even innocuous things, like "how a busy parent of 5 cuts grocery expenses" are subject to scathing, personal attacks. 

It's because inherent to this sort of advice is that what the person (i.e. the consumer of the self-improvement content) is currently doing is wrong.  So of course MMM gets blow back because he's saying that the average Western person is a sucker for doing what almost all Western people do- drive a lot, buy a bunch of shit they don't need, excessively outsource things, and otherwise try to keep up superficial appearances.  The average Western person, therefore, gets angry and makes up excuses to justify keeping the status quo.

This^^^

Eric

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2019, 11:25:54 AM »
He tells people what they don't want to hear. 

What's easier?  Thoughtfully considering that your own life choices are the source of your money issues or dismissing the messenger as a crackpot know-nothing and continuing to blame others for your lack of progress?

Luck12

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2019, 11:28:01 AM »
Just about anytime you go against the grain of society you get hate and pushback.  Doesn't matter the topic.  People are animals, the herd mentality is strong. 

scantee

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2019, 11:39:01 AM »
I think it is not that big of a deal. Anytime someone gets any sort of renown people will gossip. Yes of course it is petty and judgmental, but youíre just not going to get humans to stop doing this kind of thing. Barring extreme behaviors (stalking, threats of harm) the best you can do is ignore it and move on.

Malkynn

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2019, 12:10:48 PM »
It's not MMM hate in particular, it's the fucking internet.

Ask anyone with a strong personality if they get hate and they will be all "bitch please, I eat that shit for breakfast", it's just amped up online.

Besides, if people are getting their information from the comments section, they aren't people who want a legitimate source of information. They are seeking info to further their rage.

By all means, feel free to engage if you enjoy it, but don't waste any psychic energy on it if it doesn't bring something to you personally because you are wasting a lot of energy screaming into the void.

Adam Zapple

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2019, 02:55:13 PM »
It's the internet where people can anonymously take out their life's frustrations on others.  Challenging any social norm will trigger these types.  My news feed has tons of FI stories and the comments sections are always loaded with negatity.  It's mostly jealousy and ignorance about finances.  Most people are set in their ways and resist change.

Mr. Green

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2019, 04:01:08 PM »
People aren't educated, and don't want to be educated.
You are simply seeing an illustration of humanity. The majority of people out there simply can't think for themselves anymore. When you really think about that, and let it marinate for a little bit, everything that you see around you suddenly makes sense. Sad, but true.

DreamFIRE

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2019, 04:17:42 PM »
People aren't educated, and don't want to be educated.
You are simply seeing an illustration of humanity. The majority of people out there simply can't think for themselves anymore. When you really think about that, and let it marinate for a little bit, everything that you see around you suddenly makes sense. Sad, but true.

That's for sure.  I see that a lot.

jojoguy

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2019, 04:29:55 PM »
I think it is just envy. They want to do what he does, but they don`t have the patience and/or determination to do it. They are more concerned about showing off what they can have NOW. I don`t agree with everything about the guy, but I highly respect him and really appreciate his valuable info he shares with all of us. He definitely did what he set out to do, and shows that it is not as hard as the financial guys would like the public to believe.

WhiteTrashCash

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2019, 05:17:13 PM »
I think it's important to remember that 49.99999% of the population has a below average IQ. That helps keep things in perspective.

Pigeon

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #20 on: January 11, 2019, 06:03:46 AM »
When you make yourself a public figure, you will attract public attention.  The public comprises all sorts of people, with wildly differing opinions about everything.

Do you really spend a great deal of effort following people around the internet trying to change opinions on everything you disagree with?  It must be exhausting.

nereo

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #21 on: January 11, 2019, 06:14:47 AM »
I think it's important to remember that 49.99999% of the population has a below average IQ. That helps keep things in perspective.

i'm not convinced that IQ is well correlated with civility on the internet.  In other words, really smart people can be jerks or kind; the same can be said about less intelligent people.

....and I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but as a teacher of stats I just can't let this go unanswered; when we speak of 'average' IQ (or home prices or salaries) that does not mean half are above and half are below (which would be the mean, when we are using the median). So it is true to say "more than half of the country lives in a below average home".  Not sure which way the tails go on the IQ spectrum (are there more really smart people than mentally deficient ones?)

MDfive21

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #22 on: January 11, 2019, 08:44:41 AM »
Since the divorce, MMM has popped up on a few of the other blogs I frequent with varying degrees of awareness. Much like many MSM articles that allow comments, the misinformation, assumptions, and straight up lies about what he is or is not is shocking. People aren't educated, and don't want to be educated. Several pages of people arguing whether he's retired or not. "He run a blog. It makes money. Not retired. QED". "He eats catfood, never travels or does anything fun, just sits in his home alone counting dollars"

What causes this? Why is this subject so bloody controversial and bringing out the worst in so many people? Why do people go out of their way to remain ignorant, and discount what he says, by straight up twisting it to fit whatever biases they have?

haters gonna hate, bitches gonna bitch.  etc.

people just need something to talk about, plus if you run a blog or want social media followers, the best way to get clicks is to ignite the outrage.  hopefully the trend will reverse at some point and thoughtful blogs/posts like MMM will be in the majority.  it's getting tedious to filter out the hateful garbage, but def possible.

nereo

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2019, 08:55:38 AM »

haters gonna hate, bitches gonna bitch.  etc.

people just need something to talk about, plus if you run a blog or want social media followers, the best way to get clicks is to ignite the outrage.  hopefully the trend will reverse at some point and thoughtful blogs/posts like MMM will be in the majority.  it's getting tedious to filter out the hateful garbage, but def possible.

There's ad-blocker - I wish someone would design a hate-blocker that masked these comments.  One that could instantly filter out comments which were nothing but rubbish (e.g. ad hominem attacks, derogatory name-calling, blatantly false 'facts') while still allowing thoughtful criticism through.

Dabnasty

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2019, 09:23:25 AM »
I think it's important to remember that 49.99999% of the population has a below average IQ. That helps keep things in perspective.

i'm not convinced that IQ is well correlated with civility on the internet.  In other words, really smart people can be jerks or kind; the same can be said about less intelligent people.

....and I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but as a teacher of stats I just can't let this go unanswered; when we speak of 'average' IQ (or home prices or salaries) that does not mean half are above and half are below (which would be the mean, when we are using the median). So it is true to say "more than half of the country lives in a below average home".  Not sure which way the tails go on the IQ spectrum (are there more really smart people than mentally deficient ones?)

I think you're right in that most people who say "average" are referring to the mean but technically the median can also be referred to as an average. Average is a broad term which can refer to anything that represents a statistical norm; mean and median are the most commonly used averages.

patrickza

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2019, 09:49:04 AM »
I haven't seen any hate posts, but maybe I'm not reading those blogs anyway. I have a fairly low tolerance for negativity in my life so I'd just move on if I came across it.

Malkynn

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2019, 10:00:38 AM »
I think it's important to remember that 49.99999% of the population has a below average IQ. That helps keep things in perspective.

i'm not convinced that IQ is well correlated with civility on the internet.  In other words, really smart people can be jerks or kind; the same can be said about less intelligent people.

....and I'm really not trying to be a jerk, but as a teacher of stats I just can't let this go unanswered; when we speak of 'average' IQ (or home prices or salaries) that does not mean half are above and half are below (which would be the mean, when we are using the median). So it is true to say "more than half of the country lives in a below average home".  Not sure which way the tails go on the IQ spectrum (are there more really smart people than mentally deficient ones?)

I think you're right in that most people who say "average" are referring to the mean but technically the median can also be referred to as an average. Average is a broad term which can refer to anything that represents a statistical norm; mean and median are the most commonly used averages.

IQ is bell-curved by design.
The curve isn't a result of the scores, the scores are a result of the curve. So kind of a moot point.

The average IQ of people who participate in comments section though??? Likely bimodal with people in the middle staying the hell away from that dumpster fire.

Boofinator

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #27 on: January 11, 2019, 10:13:15 AM »
I'm going to go a little contrary to the chorus here. Maybe I don't visit as many comments sections as you, but it seems the thoughtful complaints about the MMM persona follow along the following lines:

1) He makes money off the blog and carpentry, therefore he is not retired in the traditional sense. This is 100% true, even if MMM enjoys these tasks so much that he would do them if he didn't get paid. Having a job you enjoy is probably one of the pinnacles of happiness: you spend your hours happy and productive, and people appreciate your product enough to trade their labor (in the form of money) for that product. And its undeniably true that the income from these two jobs has allowed him increased happiness in various ways (even if he isn't wasting it on consumer crap). The general connotation of retirement (though the IRPP would disagree) is that you are not making money off earned income. So when he says you can retire at 30 like I did, some people understandably bristle. Now if MMM says you can quit your crappy corporate job at 30 like I did, that could not be viewed in any way as hypocritical at worse, or an exaggeration at best.

2) MMM throws face punches, i.e. he attacks the lifestyle of spendypants as a class. Everyone here seems to be perfectly ok with that. But when spendypants want to return the favor by attacking Mustachianism or our leader, we get all offended? Who cares? They have some good points, they have a lot of very bad points, its our job to take the good ones and dump the rest (and not visit sites with shitty content). Despite the tongue in cheek, we are not a cult and are therefore allowed to criticize certain things and open-mindedly listen to criticism without losing sense of the beauty of frugality and optimism.

Cassie

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #28 on: January 11, 2019, 10:51:59 AM »
I have also seen some hateful comments on other blogs. People divorce for many reasons. Sometimes money is a issue.  I think this blog has helped many people. I call myself semi-retired because I choose to work part time teaching a online college class. Itís fun. At 64 I have no plans to quit.   I never wanted to retire early because I didnít start my career until 39.  It was awesome to be able to retire from my full time job at 58.  Like many of my generation we have always lived below our means.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #29 on: January 11, 2019, 10:54:40 AM »
I donít think itís hate for MMM as much as resistance to change, which is natural. Change is a threat to most people and threats produce deeply ingrained responses: flight, fight or freeze. For many people the message they are hearing, which is an uncommon message, is to lower your standard of living so that you eventually you are unemployed prematurely. Thst for many people is terrifying. Itís harder for many people to relate to the concept of sacrificing now for a perpetual flow of cash that gives you freedom. Where are the role models for that? Where is that in the movies or tv? Hell, billionaires still work when none of them have to, so what makes us think this message resonates so easily? Iíve got people I know and trust who love me who, either donít believe me, donít want to hear about or I feel uncomfortable discussing with because of what it reveals about their choices and what it would mean for them to change. Itís daunting to put together FIRE plans and stick with them and embarrassing to confront all your bad financial decisions. How many of us were educated on how to manage our finances properly? Few. Itís not taught in schools generally. So people are behaving naturally, the FIRE message is the outlier, which is fine, but naive of us to not understand the resistance and empathize with it. You want to change, everyone come out of the closet regarding FI, shout it to the rooftops and share with everyone. Too scary? Yeah, I get it. This is all scary stuff. Some people overcome the fear, some respond in the ways humans have since they entered the scene: flight, fight or freeze.

undercover

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #30 on: January 11, 2019, 10:55:27 AM »
I find defending someone of something you don't know as stupid as accusing them of something you don't know. Both are conjectures.

There's a guy on the internet that writes helpful advice about money and retiring with seemingly good intentions. That's where it ends for me. I'm not going to sit here and defend someone I don't really know any more than I'm going to accuse them of anything.

FrugalToque

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #31 on: January 11, 2019, 11:04:46 AM »
What causes this? Why is this subject so bloody controversial and bringing out the worst in so many people? Why do people go out of their way to remain ignorant, and discount what he says, by straight up twisting it to fit whatever biases they have?

It's actually been like this since he started the blog.  There are always new people becoming aware of the concept and they have a number of standard rejection techniques to protect themselves from having to evaluate their lives and consider they may have been wasting time or money.

"He's fake.  He's not really retired.  Trust fund baby.  Hi tech salary.  Blog click bait." etc. etc.

Toque.

Boofinator

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #32 on: January 11, 2019, 11:34:17 AM »
ďAs to the abuses I have met with, I number them among my honors. One cannot behave so as to obtain the esteem of the wise and good without drawing on one's self at the same time the envy and malice of the foolish and wicked, and the latter is testimony of the former. The best men have always had their share of this treatment.... A man has therefore some reason to be ashamed when he meets with none of it.Ē

-Mr. $100 Mustache

FenderBender

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #33 on: January 11, 2019, 11:36:39 AM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.


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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #34 on: January 11, 2019, 11:42:32 AM »
To offer a slightly different take, I think some people were surprised and felt "let down" because they thought FIRE/Mustachianism was the official magic pill that meant life could be stereotypically perfect. Hit FIRE and you ride off into the sunset with your money! Not at all. FIRE does not insulate a person from every possible "bad" life circumstance. It just means you have more financial flexibility when good or "bad" life happens, because it will. "Bad" is always in quotes since in many circumstances, divorce generally carries connotations of "bad" and "failure" and is looked down on. I personally don't share the opinion that divorce is always inherently "bad", and I'm also happy to read and apply common-sense financial information from those willing to distribute it.

Dabnasty

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #35 on: January 11, 2019, 12:11:12 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.

So you think it's a lie because you haven't figured out how to do it yet?

If you believe this I would suggest spending some time on these forums, perhaps take a look at some of the case studies or the "share your badassity" section. Many people on this forum live on far less than 25k/year. Personally, we live on just under that amount.*

As for whether or not he is retired, I consider that mostly irrelevant. The real question is whether his current budget would have been covered by assets owned the day they declared FI. That's a hard question to answer with precision, but it seems pretty likely given the performance of the stock market since he started this blog..

*Household of 2, no kids. Also, I track the expenses that are luxuries and could be cut if necessary such as dining out, gym memberships, and subscriptions. There's an easy $3,000 in fat that could be trimmed, another $1,000-2,000 would be more difficult.

Boofinator

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #36 on: January 11, 2019, 12:11:56 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.

I wouldn't characterize it as dishonesty, but I agree that a common (somewhat) valid complaint is not including items that he uses for personal reasons on his budget just because he could expense them to his business (which retired people wouldn't have the option of doing). Several more examples come to mind, but MMM really jumped the shark when he didn't include the new Nissan Leaf in his spending; some of this I could swallow with his disclaimer that this is what he would have spent without having the blog (despite the imputed value of a new car versus an older one), but then he says, "The biggest lesson that I try to emphasize is that spending does not have to scale with income." In this case, the words didn't match the actions.

This isn't to say the general message is off. It is to say that a lot of people (myself included) think his spending level is higher than advertised for his quality of living.*

*But that's ok, for two reasons: 1) He delivers the message better than just about anyone else, which is why I proudly follow. 2) Everyone needs to determine spending levels for themselves, and shouldn't be comparing their lifestyle or spending levels with the Joneses.

nereo

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #37 on: January 11, 2019, 12:22:59 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.
What??  You think he's dishonest, you don't read anything he writes, but you are convinced that what he writes isn't true?  Based on what?

If you think $25k/year with a paid off house has to be a lie simply because you spend personally spend more, I'd have to ask - how do 40% of households spend less than you?  I will testify that we have never spent anywhere close to $25k after subtracting out the PI of our mortgage. We can't - we've never made that much.

Regarding the insurance - that's basically what self-insurance is all about.  Insurance companies make money off of you.  If you can afford to cover the worst case scenario it's typically better to self insure, or at most carry catastrophic insurance with a very high deductible (which is our basic strategy).

FenderBender

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #38 on: January 11, 2019, 12:27:36 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.
So you think it's a lie because you haven't figured out how to do it yet?


no, i think it is a lie because he speaks about things yet those things aren't in his expense report.  homes don't go without maintenance yet he allocated very little to it (no where near enough over multiple years).  not being able to do it wasn't my primary reason, but it is one given other things i've noticed.  but good on you for mastering the lifestyle.   

Fanta

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #39 on: January 11, 2019, 12:28:21 PM »
Quote
As for whether or not he is retired, I consider that mostly irrelevant. The real question is whether his current budget would have been covered by assets owned the day they declared FI. That's a hard question to answer with precision, but it seems pretty likely given the performance of the stock market since he started this blog..

Let's first acknowledge that there are plenty of toxic people out there, who make comments just to bring other people down, and some of them make comments on the Internet.  I won't argue that point.

But about retirement being irrelevant....That's kind of unfair to someone who is hearing about early retirement for the first time.  It's fine to repurpose and redefine the word on this forum, but outside this little tiny corner of the internet, the word retirement means no longer working for money. 

"What do you do for work?" 
"I'm retired."
"Great! What your side hustle fun job that you still do because you love it so much?"

That exchange doesn't happen in the real world, because out there "retired" means you're no longer working and bringing in income via business.

So yes, people are skeptical when they see Pete still making money on affiliate links.  And they are also skeptical when Pete says that when you are FI, you no longer have to work for money.  He doesn't even eat his own cooking. (metaphor for following the advice you give to others)

We all know what amount Pete retired with.  If Pete hadn't been making money in "retirement", if he'd only been doing stuff for fun, but not adding to his pile of dollars, the divorce *may* well have put him back in the workforce. 

So I get that comments sections can be terrible... but I think Pete has some role to play here. 

P.S. Under the Mr. Money Mustache persona, Pete basically took on the persona of Ted DiBiase (the Million Dollar Man).  Of course people hate him.  That persona is part of why the blog was and is so popular.  All over the Internet there are blogs about how nothing is your fault, and how we are all just victims.  Pete basically flipped the script.  I love that he did it.  But I also understand that not everyone is going to react well to that approach.

FenderBender

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #40 on: January 11, 2019, 12:39:27 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.
What??  You think he's dishonest, you don't read anything he writes, but you are convinced that what he writes isn't true?  Based on what?

If you think $25k/year with a paid off house has to be a lie simply because you spend personally spend more, I'd have to ask - how do 40% of households spend less than you?  I will testify that we have never spent anywhere close to $25k after subtracting out the PI of our mortgage. We can't - we've never made that much.

Regarding the insurance - that's basically what self-insurance is all about.  Insurance companies make money off of you.  If you can afford to cover the worst case scenario it's typically better to self insure, or at most carry catastrophic insurance with a very high deductible (which is our basic strategy).

in the beginning i was a huge supporter so i read a lot but then came things i couldn't believe so i stopped reading.  i stopped believing based on my reading not because i tried living on 25 and couldn't.  my needs probably cost me around 30k but for entertainment which includes travel my wife and i need 15000, but it varies each year which is another sign MMM is a liar, his was always super stable.

sorry to offend, even if i'm worth 3 million and live in a home that's worth 300000 i think it is stupid to risk losing 300000 to save 1200/yr.

Boofinator

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #41 on: January 11, 2019, 12:55:42 PM »
Regarding the insurance - that's basically what self-insurance is all about.  Insurance companies make money off of you.  If you can afford to cover the worst case scenario it's typically better to self insure, or at most carry catastrophic insurance with a very high deductible (which is our basic strategy).

I don't disagree with the logic for ditching the insurance, but let's flip the script. Say MMM's house burnt to the ground. Would he have shown on the year's expenses that he had a $300k expense? If not, then he should have at least shown what he would have spent had he not had his blog income; he uses this reasoning to not include expenses when they are even tangentially related to the blog (or to carpentry), but then doesn't include what should have been an expense by this same logic.

Dabnasty

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #42 on: January 11, 2019, 01:04:15 PM »
Quote
As for whether or not he is retired, I consider that mostly irrelevant. The real question is whether his current budget would have been covered by assets owned the day they declared FI. That's a hard question to answer with precision, but it seems pretty likely given the performance of the stock market since he started this blog.

Let's first acknowledge that there are plenty of toxic people out there, who make comments just to bring other people down, and some of them make comments on the Internet.  I won't argue that point.

But about retirement being irrelevant....That's kind of unfair to someone who is hearing about early retirement for the first time.  It's fine to repurpose and redefine the word on this forum, but outside this little tiny corner of the internet, the word retirement means no longer working for money. 

"What do you do for work?" 
"I'm retired."
"Great! What your side hustle fun job that you still do because you love it so much?"

That exchange doesn't happen in the real world, because out there "retired" means you're no longer working and bringing in income via business.

So yes, people are skeptical when they see Pete still making money on affiliate links.  And they are also skeptical when Pete says that when you are FI, you no longer have to work for money.  He doesn't even eat his own cooking. (metaphor for following the advice you give to others)

We all know what amount Pete retired with.  If Pete hadn't been making money in "retirement", if he'd only been doing stuff for fun, but not adding to his pile of dollars, the divorce *may* well have put him back in the workforce. 

So I get that comments sections can be terrible... but I think Pete has some role to play here. 

P.S. Under the Mr. Money Mustache persona, Pete basically took on the persona of Ted DiBiase (the Million Dollar Man).  Of course people hate him.  That persona is part of why the blog was and is so popular.  All over the Internet there are blogs about how nothing is your fault, and how we are all just victims.  Pete basically flipped the script.  I love that he did it.  But I also understand that not everyone is going to react well to that approach.
I guess I don't see why it matters what Pete does with his life after hitting FI, which he defined as investments equal to 25x annual expenses. As long as the original formula holds up, I think his claims are accurate. If he won the lottery would it be dishonest to continue writing about achieving FI through a high savings rate?

As for the divorce taking him out of FI range, I doubt it given performance of the stock market since he left full time employment and the way he described his divorce costs. The divorce may not have been so amicable if there wasn't plenty of money to go around, but that's pure speculation AND I think he would concede that certain major life events can take away your financial independence - you can't protect against everything.

Eric

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #43 on: January 11, 2019, 02:33:48 PM »
P.S. Under the Mr. Money Mustache persona, Pete basically took on the persona of Ted DiBiase (the Million Dollar Man).  Of course people hate him.  That persona is part of why the blog was and is so popular. 

That's a really good analogy!

Eric

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #44 on: January 11, 2019, 02:34:58 PM »
in the beginning i was a huge supporter so i read a lot but then came things i couldn't believe so i stopped reading.  i stopped believing based on my reading not because i tried living on 25 and couldn't.  my needs probably cost me around 30k but for entertainment which includes travel my wife and i need 15000, but it varies each year which is another sign MMM is a liar, his was always super stable.

This why I'm convinced no one has ever run a sub-4 minute mile, and anyone who says so is lying, since I've never been able to do it.

Seadog

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #45 on: January 11, 2019, 02:38:54 PM »
... which includes travel my wife and i need 15000, but it varies each year which is another sign MMM is a liar, his was always super stable.

sorry to offend, even if i'm worth 3 million and live in a home that's worth 300000 i think it is stupid to risk losing 300000 to save 1200/yr.

Are you sure you're on the right forum? You *need* 15k in entertainment per year? I think we're getting pretty side tracked from my original point, but that's sort of one of the tenants of this site. Do away with the expensive bullshit. Lots of people survive full stop on 15k a year, and you're here saying you simply couldn't cope without spending that on plane tickets, fancy dinners and concerts.

And you're not offending, you're just showing yourself to have a poor grasp of stats. *Risk* losing 300k? What does risk mean? You're just going to completely ignore likelihood? What if insurance cost $2k? $5k? Is there a number where it doesn't make sense to buy it for you? There is a number that reflects the likelihood of the home burning down, the insurance company knows it, and it's sure as shit a lot less than $1200. The lottery and insurance are different sides of the same coin. You'd lose 300k on the 5,000:1 shot your home burns down, but it's really really really unlikely to happen. Just like you'll lose $10m if your lotto numbers get called and you didn't buy a ticket. You got to be in it to win it!

It's sort of like the withdrawal rate question. If you want to protect yourself from every peril, no matter how remote you will never stop working because that demands a withdrawal rate of 0% as something completely unforeseen could wipe out the entire economy.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2019, 02:43:15 PM by Seadog »

iris lily

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #46 on: January 11, 2019, 02:40:08 PM »
Anyone who reaches a certain level of noteriety is subject to potshots. It is that simple.

Dabnasty

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #47 on: January 11, 2019, 02:51:22 PM »
I think MMM was honest at the onset of his story, but as the money grew, he became very dishonest so I don't like him and I've not read a word he has said for years.  i don't trust that what he writes is true.

I'm very frugal, have no kids, live in 750 sqft and I have a difficult time in the subs of baltimore spending less than 45k/yr. so I found 25/yr to be a lie.  I felt he classified personal expenses as business.  I remember he posted a budget once where he didn't pay for home insurance and said he was self-insured so I found that pretty stupid, who risks having to spend 100s of thousands to save about 1200/yr just to advertise staying under 25/yr?  Looking at multi-year budgets, he spent little to nothing on his house, but I guess that's a personal expense for me and a business expense for him. 

and yes, he quit his job, but he basically started a construction company and a company around this blog, but somehow he is retired i guess because he is able to quit his JOBS again at anytime.  Jamie Dimon is retired too i guess and so is Buffett and Bezos.
What??  You think he's dishonest, you don't read anything he writes, but you are convinced that what he writes isn't true?  Based on what?

If you think $25k/year with a paid off house has to be a lie simply because you spend personally spend more, I'd have to ask - how do 40% of households spend less than you?  I will testify that we have never spent anywhere close to $25k after subtracting out the PI of our mortgage. We can't - we've never made that much.

Regarding the insurance - that's basically what self-insurance is all about.  Insurance companies make money off of you.  If you can afford to cover the worst case scenario it's typically better to self insure, or at most carry catastrophic insurance with a very high deductible (which is our basic strategy).

in the beginning i was a huge supporter so i read a lot but then came things i couldn't believe so i stopped reading.  i stopped believing based on my reading not because i tried living on 25 and couldn't.  my needs probably cost me around 30k but for entertainment which includes travel my wife and i need 15000, but it varies each year which is another sign MMM is a liar, his was always super stable.

sorry to offend, even if i'm worth 3 million and live in a home that's worth 300000 i think it is stupid to risk losing 300000 to save 1200/yr.

I hear this sentiment a lot, "risk [big number] to save [small number] - that's just stupid". But when you make that statement, are you considering the actual probability of losing the full value of the house? What if the odds are 1:1000 on an annual basis? In that case the statistically correct amount to pay for insurance would be $300/year right?

The only unknown variable is what the odds really are. Do you think they are better or worse than 1:1000?

Dabnasty

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #48 on: January 11, 2019, 03:01:28 PM »
... which includes travel my wife and i need 15000, but it varies each year which is another sign MMM is a liar, his was always super stable.

sorry to offend, even if i'm worth 3 million and live in a home that's worth 300000 i think it is stupid to risk losing 300000 to save 1200/yr.

Are you sure you're on the right forum? You *need* 15k in entertainment per year? I think we're getting pretty side tracked from my original point, but that's sort of one of the tenants of this site. Do away with the expensive bullshit. Lots of people survive full stop on 15k a year, and you're here saying you simply couldn't cope without spending that on plane tickets, fancy dinners and concerts.

And you're not offending, you're just showing yourself to have a poor grasp of stats. *Risk* losing 300k? What does risk mean? You're just going to completely ignore likelihood? What if insurance cost $2k? $5k? Is there a number where it doesn't make sense to buy it for you? There is a number that reflects the likelihood of the home burning down, the insurance company knows it, and it's sure as shit a lot less than $1200. The lottery and insurance are different sides of the same coin. You'd lose 300k on the 5,000:1 shot your home burns down, but it's really really really unlikely to happen. Just like you'll lose $10m if your lotto numbers get called and you didn't buy a ticket. You got to be in it to win it!

It's sort of like the withdrawal rate question. If you want to protect yourself from every peril, no matter how remote you will never stop working because that demands a withdrawal rate of 0% as something completely unforeseen could wipe out the entire economy.

That's a good way to frame it. At what odds would you be willing to buy a $1,200 lottery ticket with a $300,000 payout? The statistically even answer is 1:250. Does FenderBender think there is a 1:250 chance of total loss of a home every year?

Now of course this ignores all the other bad things that can happen to your home that would result in less than a total loss, but rest assured the insurance companies have accounted for them so we don't really need to find the odds ourselves, the works been done.

PDXTabs

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Re: MMM Hate
« Reply #49 on: January 11, 2019, 03:26:06 PM »
People aren't educated, and don't want to be educated.
You are simply seeing an illustration of humanity. The majority of people out there simply can't think for themselves anymore. When you really think about that, and let it marinate for a little bit, everything that you see around you suddenly makes sense. Sad, but true.

That's for sure.  I see that a lot.

What do you mean anymore? I would say that recorded history is full of examples of people not being able to think for themselves.