Poll

Would you go to prison for five years in exchange for a million dollars?

Yes! Send the guards and the van with the mesh windows right away!
10 (5.7%)
No, thank you. I like money but not enough for that.
165 (94.3%)

Total Members Voted: 175

Voting closed: February 05, 2018, 06:44:20 AM

Author Topic: RESULTS:Would you go to prison for five years in exchange for a million dollars?  (Read 2677 times)

GOFU

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UPDATE: I decided to turn this into a poll.

UPDATE II: We're calling this one early. I posted a comment below with an explanation and results.


Have I got an investment proposition for you! No money down. This is an investment in time.

Would you go to prison for five years in exchange for a million dollars?

I'm not talking about the Gulag, or a Turkish prison, or Folsom or the state penitentiary. Just a medium security or even minimum security place. Not the worst dark damp hell hole, but a place where you definitely are in prison and you know it. At the end, when you come out five years later, you have a million dollars waiting for you.

Would you do it? Would it be worth it to you? Why or why not?

Later I will discuss why I pose the hypothetical.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 03:11:22 PM by GOFU »

birdman2003

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A rather vexing question, but no, I would not want to be separated from my wife for 5 years to make a million dollars.  I wouldn't even relocate to a different city than my wife to make extra money, so I'm surely not going to prison for the hypothetical cash.

Louisville

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My time on earth is finite, and five years is an appreciable chunk of it.
If it were $100 million, and I was much younger, single, no kids.... maybe. I could then do a lot of good for myself and others.

GOFU

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Please don't forget to vote in the poll above.

boarder42

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1MM definitely isnt enough for me personally - i will make over 1MM investing and working over the next 5 years so why would i go to a place i'm locked up vs a place i can do whatever i want and have freedom.
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VoteCthulu

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If I could pick a federal minimum security resort prison, then sure. It's twice what I make at my job with no responsibilities and most of the conveniences of home. Where do I sign up?

Mississippi Mudstache

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Nope. No amount of money could make me choose to spend 5 years away from my wife and kids. If I were fresh out of college, I might have considered it. But even then, it would realistically have taken more than a million. Maybe 5 mil.
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spedleysam

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Possibly 1M per year, but not 1M for 5 years.  I think there should be a poll for the amount of $ it would take to spend 5 years in prison!

doneby35

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1million to lock me up in a cage for 5 years? no thank you.

v8rx7guy

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Not for $1M, but I'd do it for $10M... I'd probably even consider $5M.

MasterStache

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Hell no! Not even for 10 mil. Being there for my kids doesn't come with a price tag. 

Cromacster

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Under certain circumstances I'd consider it.

Fresh outa high school or college with the freedom to continue education while locked up, I'd probably do it.

Where I am at right now in life, probably not.
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Tass

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I will not make anywhere near 1 mil in the next 5 years, and I don't have any kids, but there's no amount of money I'd agree to that for. I already have enough money to be fairly happy, so more is diminishing returns - more money is beneficial only as it increases my freedom. And prison for 5 years is far too great a freedom sacrifice.

You'd have to change the question to "how many days would you be willing to stay in prison for a million dollars?" I might give up a few weeks or months and read intensively, assuming I'm not also agreeing to be convicted of a crime. I would get lonely before too long, though.

Knapptyme

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Under certain circumstances I'd consider it.

Fresh outa high school...

Of course, this assumes knowledge of a few other things like that I would still meet and marry my wife and knowledge of Mustachian principles so I don't blow the investment.

It's still an interesting question. 

Fireball

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"Ya know, the scariest part about going to prison isn't the loss of freedom, the stigma or even the separation from loved ones. It's the, uh, daily anal rape." - Norm MacDonald"

Me too, Norm. Me too.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 09:29:17 AM by Fireball »

matchewed

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bridget

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If I could pick a federal minimum security resort prison, then sure. It's twice what I make at my job with no responsibilities and most of the conveniences of home. Where do I sign up?

Maybe you live a much more stoic life than I do, but I greatly value ďconveniencesĒ like the ability to sleep in on weekends, have privacy and freedom of movement, take a long bath at will, snuggle a pet, enjoy a sunset or a hike or a beach or a good tv show, drink wine that didnít come out of a toilet, have sex, and generally nurture my long term hobbies, goals, and relationships. Itís just icing on the cake to avoid a daily lack of dignity and respect, and a drastically higher risk of physical and sexual assault (yes, even at minimum security facilities).


Jrr85

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UPDATE: I decided to turn this into a poll.

Have I got an investment proposition for you! No money down. This is an investment in time.

Would you go to prison for five years in exchange for a million dollars?

I'm not talking about the Gulag, or a Turkish prison, or Folsom or the state penitentiary. Just a medium security or even minimum security place. Not the worst dark damp hell hole, but a place where you definitely are in prison and you know it. At the end, when you come out five years later, you have a million dollars waiting for you.

Would you do it? Would it be worth it to you? Why or why not?

Later I will discuss why I pose the hypothetical.

Assuming no risk of rape and you're talking 5 years of reading, working out, playing casual sports and when you're done, have a $1M???  Tempting, but you're talking about 5 years without interaction with the opposite sex.  Not sure how that would work out.  And then $1M wouldn't set me at the lifestyle I want.  If I had not been an idiot, I would be at the $1M after about ten years of work, so if we're talking fantasy scenarios, I woudl go for the one where I go back in time 15 years and tell younger me to not be an idiot. 

5 years and come out with $5M, I would probably say that's a fair trade off prior to having a wife and kid.  Still not sure how five years without interaction with the opposite sex would affect me though. 



limeandpepper

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Well, I discussed this with my partner, and we both agreed that severely limited internet access in prisons is a deal breaker for us. Can't believe no one has mentioned this yet. #priorities

Barbaebigode

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Well, no. Something to do with the risk of being raped/stabbed. Perhaps if it was in a norwegian prison, with me in my early twenties without a son to look after, then I would consider.

boarder42

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alright so lets discuss your point to this @GOFU its a pretty resounding no
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meghan88

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So, when do we get to learn why you posed the question?

Gondolin

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If I was single and you gave me the million up front so I could invest it right away, I'd consider it. Otherwise, too much lost compounding time.
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Just Joe

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Nope. No amount of money could make me choose to spend 5 years away from my wife and kids. If I were fresh out of college, I might have considered it. But even then, it would realistically have taken more than a million. Maybe 5 mil.

What he/she said. Wouldn't miss my time with mostly the kids b/c they are growing up so fast. Also wouldn't want to miss the years with DW but we'll mostly be the same in five years. I can't imagine a five year hiatus would be good for a marriage million bucks or not.

If this was connected to a real crime then definitely not.

I gave the military six years when I was young. Over all a good experience.

Wish the military would have paid me a million bucks for the time away from family. I returned to a family where one relative had passed, another was in bad shape, and the family dynamics had totally changed. Or maybe I changed. Or both.

I can't imagine willingly doing that again for $1M. Life is so short.

Edit: I did not fully consider the prison environment the years would be spent in. No, that definitely wrecks the notion. No way.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 11:49:47 AM by Just Joe »

JLee

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Fuck no.

GOFU

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Thank you all for your participation in my little thought experiment.

The reason I took this poll is because I did this. I went to prison for five years for a million bucks.

An associate of mine committed a crime and paid me a million dollars to take the rap and serve the time in prison for him.

Just kidding. I didnít do that.

Really, as some have intuited the hypothetical is a proxy for being stuck in a shitty situation and holding out and serving the time to get to the big payoff. I specifically was thinking of a job, but it could be a house, a marriage, a thesis or anything else that feels like a prison.

The prison scenario was inspired by a friend/colleague who, in my opinion, doesnít appreciate how good he has it. He has a cushy job, well paid, lots of perks and flexibility, heís home for lunch and dinner with his wife and kids every day, and he has such a low cost of living he is able to save about 70% of his earnings.

The rub is that to have all that he must live in a pretty crappy third world place that is uncomfortable and inconvenient. He is late 40s and has saved more than enough for financial independence where he lives now. If he sticks it out for five more years or so, at normal market returns he will accumulate another million or so and be financially free without doubt by any reasonable measure and could go anywhere he wants.

He is talking about pulling out, heading back to the first world, trying to restart his high stress career and suburban lifestyle that will set him back at least another 5 and perhaps 10 years financially. My advice was to stick it out, using the argument that a lot of people would go to prison for 5 years for a million bucks and financial freedom.

I can see I was wrong on that point when it comes to Mustache forum lurkers. So I canít use my poll here as persuasive evidence with him (94% negative response rate). But I guess I can still legitimately argue to him that his situation isnít all that bad, relatively speaking. I mean, he has little risk of getting shanked in the shower.

matchewed

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Thank you all for your participation in my little thought experiment.

The reason I took this poll is because I did this. I went to prison for five years for a million bucks.

An associate of mine committed a crime and paid me a million dollars to take the rap and serve the time in prison for him.

Just kidding. I didnít do that.

Really, as some have intuited the hypothetical is a proxy for being stuck in a shitty situation and holding out and serving the time to get to the big payoff. I specifically was thinking of a job, but it could be a house, a marriage, a thesis or anything else that feels like a prison.

The prison scenario was inspired by a friend/colleague who, in my opinion, doesnít appreciate how good he has it. He has a cushy job, well paid, lots of perks and flexibility, heís home for lunch and dinner with his wife and kids every day, and he has such a low cost of living he is able to save about 70% of his earnings.

The rub is that to have all that he must live in a pretty crappy third world place that is uncomfortable and inconvenient. He is late 40s and has saved more than enough for financial independence where he lives now. If he sticks it out for five more years or so, at normal market returns he will accumulate another million or so and be financially free without doubt by any reasonable measure and could go anywhere he wants.

He is talking about pulling out, heading back to the first world, trying to restart his high stress career and suburban lifestyle that will set him back at least another 5 and perhaps 10 years financially. My advice was to stick it out, using the argument that a lot of people would go to prison for 5 years for a million bucks and financial freedom.

I can see I was wrong on that point when it comes to Mustache forum lurkers. So I canít use my poll here as persuasive evidence with him (94% negative response rate). But I guess I can still legitimately argue to him that his situation isnít all that bad, relatively speaking. I mean, he has little risk of getting shanked in the shower.



HAHAHAHHAHAAHAHHA HAHAHAH


No prison is nothing like working a shitty job. It's not even close and anyone who chooses to frame it that way has such a terrible viewpoint in their head that they'd be better served re framing aspects of their lives.

Jrr85

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Thank you all for your participation in my little thought experiment.

The reason I took this poll is because I did this. I went to prison for five years for a million bucks.

An associate of mine committed a crime and paid me a million dollars to take the rap and serve the time in prison for him.

Just kidding. I didnít do that.

Really, as some have intuited the hypothetical is a proxy for being stuck in a shitty situation and holding out and serving the time to get to the big payoff. I specifically was thinking of a job, but it could be a house, a marriage, a thesis or anything else that feels like a prison.

The prison scenario was inspired by a friend/colleague who, in my opinion, doesnít appreciate how good he has it. He has a cushy job, well paid, lots of perks and flexibility, heís home for lunch and dinner with his wife and kids every day, and he has such a low cost of living he is able to save about 70% of his earnings.

The rub is that to have all that he must live in a pretty crappy third world place that is uncomfortable and inconvenient. He is late 40s and has saved more than enough for financial independence where he lives now. If he sticks it out for five more years or so, at normal market returns he will accumulate another million or so and be financially free without doubt by any reasonable measure and could go anywhere he wants.

He is talking about pulling out, heading back to the first world, trying to restart his high stress career and suburban lifestyle that will set him back at least another 5 and perhaps 10 years financially. My advice was to stick it out, using the argument that a lot of people would go to prison for 5 years for a million bucks and financial freedom.

I can see I was wrong on that point when it comes to Mustache forum lurkers. So I canít use my poll here as persuasive evidence with him (94% negative response rate). But I guess I can still legitimately argue to him that his situation isnít all that bad, relatively speaking. I mean, he has little risk of getting shanked in the shower.

What is "third world" and how is it for his wife and kids?  I'd live just about anywhere safe for five year to set my family, but maybe not when the kids are say high school age.   

SwordGuy

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I know someone well who spent 8 years in prison.

It took about 3 years after he got out before he could go thru a closed door without stopping to get permission first.

Think about that.

Lack of liberty was so ingrained that he couldn't go thru a closed door without getting permission first.

He has a younger relative who got drunk/high and she killed someone in a car wreck.  ( This happened well over a decade after he got out of prison.)    He can't bring himself to visit her in prison.

So, no, it's not the same as just working hard in a job you don't like. 


EricL

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Under certain conditions I'd consider it.  If I was younger and the prison was some Scandinavian dorm facility prison: yes.  Ditto an organized crime cartel run prison if guaranteed I'll be treated like a crime boss and live a life of luxury/safety as the warden and guards get paid to look the other way. 

But at my current age and in almost any other type of prison under regular circumstances?  No.  Not for any money.
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GOFU

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So, no, it's not the same as just working hard in a job you don't like.

That was my point. In my opinion the guy has it pretty good and he is pissing and moaning as if he were stuck in Folsom Prison. The point I was making with him is that many people would endure far worse, I thought perhaps some would even accept the same amount of time in prison, for the financial remuneration he is poised to receive for his comparatively light sacrifice. But based on these poll results prison is a step too far, at least among the Mustache set.

wordnerd

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So, no, it's not the same as just working hard in a job you don't like.

That was my point. In my opinion the guy has it pretty good and he is pissing and moaning as if he were stuck in Folsom Prison. The point I was making with him is that many people would endure far worse, I thought perhaps some would even accept the same amount of time in prison, for the financial remuneration he is poised to receive for his comparatively light sacrifice. But based on these poll results prison is a step too far, at least among the Mustache set.

I answered the poll with a no, partially because I was like, "Hell, with some lucky returns, we might be able to do that just by working." But also, money is a tool to make your life better. Making your life miserable for money feels at odds with the whole concept of financial freedom.

jlcnuke

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I spent 6 years serving on a submarine. I'd argue that the conditions working underway we're much harsher and less 'free' than prison in many ways. It also didn't pay anywhere near $200k/year...

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MonkeyJenga

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Not a chance, if we're talking about the hypothetical actual prison.

Financial reasons:

1) That's an hourly wage of $23. I can make double that in a normal job.
2) I was already making $100k in my day job, so $200k a year isn't that big of an incentive. I've turned away from a more lucrative career track because it would have involved longer hours and more stress. Even that wouldn't have been actual prison.
3) I don't need a million dollars for FIRE.
4) It's not enough money to be a Bill Gates-level philanthropist.
5) I already have enough money.

Life reasons:

1) Just... no. The whole reason I care about FIRE is freedom! I like setting my own schedule, traveling to wherever I want, meeting new people, seeing new places. Sleeping in, going for long walks late at night, napping in the afternoon.
2) The psychological effects of prison do not end the moment you walk out the door. I don't want to have issues for the rest of my life because of this.
3) My social circle would be destroyed. I would have to start from scratch.
4) I am bad at both fighting and manipulating extreme power hierarchies.
5) As l&p pointed out: RESTRICTED INTERNET!
6) I would probably hate prison food.

Also, what's with all this, "maybe if I was young, single, and didn't have kids" nonsense? I'm young(ish), single, don't have kids, and I want to take advantage of that! I would miss out on so many things by going to prison. Do you think life isn't meaningful and worth experiencing unless you're married with children?



For the real situation: so the million dollars in 5 years is half market returns, that he will presumably get regardless of his job? That means he's only making around $100k? He could find something around that level in their home country that doesn't have a ton of stress, downsize the house, the kid activities, the restaurants, etc, work for 5 years and be done. Or work part-time. Or both of them could get part time jobs.

If I lived somewhere that made me miserable, I would not stay 5 years for any amount of money. I would much rather leave and rearrange my life to be more financially efficient in a place where I can be happy.

You shouldn't be convincing him to stay somewhere that he (and his family?) hate. You should be convincing him to spend less freaking money in a place they love!
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 09:31:22 PM by MonkeyJenga »

sol

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I spent 6 years serving on a submarine. I'd argue that the conditions working underway we're much harsher and less 'free' than prison in many ways. It also didn't pay anywhere near $200k/year...

One of my buds is an ex-nuke, AND an ex-con.  And a drug addict, but that's sort of secondary to the story.

He argues that prison is worse than the tight quarters of the sub.  People on a sub are like family, and they have a purpose and a position and a role to play.  Incarceration offers none of that.  He talks a lot about the collateral consequences of criminal conviction, aka "the 4 Cs".  Like, for example, you are likely to lose your job and default on your debts, which ruins your credit rating.  Your marriage or relationship is probably toast.  If you are a parent, your kid is going to suffer for your absence.  Your employment prospects upon release are significantly curtailed.  You can't vote.  You can't get student loans or public housing benefits.  You can't legally own firearms, which he finds personally most objectionable as veteran from the south.  He says being an ex-con is worse than just about any other label you can get in life.

That's probably beyond the scope of the original question.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2018, 10:44:29 PM by sol »

limeandpepper

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The rub is that to have all that he must live in a pretty crappy third world place that is uncomfortable and inconvenient.

You don't specify which third world place it is, but I'd venture to say any expat living in any third world place still has it way better than someone in prison. I'll bet his housing is more luxurious than most of the locals can afford, and he doesn't have to worry about going hungry or having access to clean water or sleeping in the streets in inclement weather. Not comparable at all, especially when you also said:

He has a cushy job, well paid, lots of perks and flexibility, heís home for lunch and dinner with his wife and kids every day, and he has such a low cost of living he is able to save about 70% of his earnings.

If you're looking for people who would say yes to going to prison for 5 years for 1 million dollars, you're better off asking people who actually live in genuinely horrible conditions where everyday is a real struggle, for whom prison in a first-world place would actually be an improvement over their current life... not people on this forum.

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I'm too pretty for prison!
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former player

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There might be a way to game 5 years in prison, if you can get yourself into a prison with education provisions.  Think of it as the equivalent of a monk's cell, but instead of praying you have access to distance learning.  You could get a bachelors and a masters in 5 years, room and board paid for.  At the end you would come out with a free education and the $1m would be a cherry on the top: if you went into prison at 18 you could come out at 23 with 2 degrees and $1m in the bank instead of all those student loans.

Me, I'm old and FIREd and know the value of my freedom, thanks.  Plus, gaming out in advance a sentence of 5 years in a prison where you would be safe and able to study sounds risky.
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Villanelle

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Nope. Im not sure there is any number I'd take in this bargain, but if there is, it definitely isn't $1m.  But really, I'm pretty happy with our finances and the long term picture, so giving up 5 years for even $10m wouldn't be worth it.

And while I kind of understand the analogy, it's a matter of degrees.  yes, both traditional employment and prison are both giving up some of your time, but the terms are so significantly different that they really aren't remotely comparable.  And being in prison means giving up that traditional employment, and likely sacrificing a decent chance at good employment in the future, so one may well end up less well off after a decade or so, even if they get a $1m check at the end of that 5 years of imprisonment.  He gets a fat check, but he lost 5 years of earning and growth, and he likely sacrificed a significant % of his future earnings as well.  So even if the conditions are tolerable, the financial picture just really doesn't work out, and that isn't even beginning to address the way the conditions would be worth it to me.

GuitarStv

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5 yeas is too long.  The changes that hav happened in my life over five year periods are pretty huge.  That's the difference between getting out of high school and getting out of university, between buying a house and paying off the mortgage, between meeting someone and getting married, between getting married and having a kid, between having a newborn and having a kid about to go into grade one.

For one year I'd consider it.  :P. They're going to feed you garbage every day, but you could follow a pretty awesome workout schedule.  If the library is OK you could keep yourself somewhat entertained.  Socialization would be pretty tough, but I can survive for a year without talking to anyone (I'v done it before).  One year is short enough that you wouldn't feel like you're going into a different world when you get out.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2018, 07:12:08 AM by GuitarStv »

sol

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Nope. Im not sure there is any number I'd take in this bargain, but if there is, it definitely isn't $1m.  But really, I'm pretty happy with our finances and the long term picture, so giving up 5 years for even $10m wouldn't be worth it.

I think this is a really interesting idea.  If the required payday in this deal changes with age, why is your time worth more when you are older than when you are young?  What is it about having your own death in sight that raises your price tag?

Is this effect related to the OMY effect?  If you suddenly need more and more money to give up your freedom (here a metaphor for your time spent in early retirement), does the rate of increase in the dollar amount rise faster than does your savings, as you approach the date?  That would explain why so many people pick an arbitrary number like $1million, then get to $975k and can't quiiiiiite pull the trigger and thus decide to work One More Year.

EricEng

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Reposting myself from the other thread.

This actually is pretty close to what I did do to make a chunk of money.  Worked as a contractor in Afghanistan for 3 years making about $200k a year.  It feels like a prison at times.  You are stuck in a walled compound with guards, guns, gates, concertina wire, people trying to kill you, terrible food, sleeping on a cot, pooping in a bucket (followed by burning your own poop), and can't leave that compound for 8-12 months.  Little connection with the outside world, days are repetitive, and nothing fun to do beyond same activities a prisoner has; reading, movies, exercise.  Your relationships back home suffer if they survive at all (most were divorced if they stayed over a year).  Locking a group of men in the same small space together with no women also make them very angry and mean to each other, so no friendly family comradery to be had.  You had very limited freedom much like prison although not as extreme and you could quit at any point and stop with what you had up to that point.

So I guess my answer was...yes?

nereo

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I spent 6 years serving on a submarine. I'd argue that the conditions working underway we're much harsher and less 'free' than prison in many ways. It also didn't pay anywhere near $200k/year...

One of my buds is an ex-nuke, AND an ex-con.  And a drug addict, but that's sort of secondary to the story.

He argues that prison is worse than the tight quarters of the sub.  People on a sub are like family, and they have a purpose and a position and a role to play.  Incarceration offers none of that.  He talks a lot about the collateral consequences of criminal conviction, aka "the 4 Cs".  Like, for example, you are likely to lose your job and default on your debts, which ruins your credit rating.  Your marriage or relationship is probably toast.  If you are a parent, your kid is going to suffer for your absence.  Your employment prospects upon release are significantly curtailed.  You can't vote.  You can't get student loans or public housing benefits.  You can't legally own firearms, which he finds personally most objectionable as veteran from the south.  He says being an ex-con is worse than just about any other label you can get in life.

That's probably beyond the scope of the original question.

I would consider enlisting in the navy for $1MM and a 5 year commitment. Heck, I seriously considered applying to the naval academy for college(had a very good shot of getting in, too), and that carried a 5 year commitment ("five-and-fly") with a 'value' of roughly $150k in tuition and salary.
 
I would NOT take $1MM to go to prison for 5 years.
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partgypsy

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If I was single and you gave me the million up front so I could invest it right away, I'd consider it. Otherwise, too much lost compounding time.

best MMM answer!

partgypsy

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It sounds like people are saying, most people could take 1 year of anything, providing a big payoff. Whether for him staying one more year will make a difference financially, I don't know. It sounds like for him, it might be better to simply reduce expenses once coming back to the states, than stay somewhere he seems to hate. He put in his time. 

ps: what is the 4 c's. Sounds like one is children?

Jaguar Paw

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Negative. It's not even that I think prison would be that bad ( I worked at one in college  and have.....associates that have spent years in prison if it's any consolation), but just missing out on time with family. I frequently see what no father figure does for kids and I don't want that. Plus, the amount isn't enough. If I was 22 and the offer was 4 million, I wouldn't think twice about it. I would probably go down to 2 mil. As I'm typing this, and thinking through it more... I may go down to 1 million if it wouldn't effect my occupational outlook: "Hey, we will pay you 1  million for this scientific study on prison" opposed to actually having a record.

Edit: without editing: Because I just realized I was answering the question as one year in prison, not 5. My answer goes back to hell no. Couldn't pay me enough for 5 years in prison.

Villanelle

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Nope. Im not sure there is any number I'd take in this bargain, but if there is, it definitely isn't $1m.  But really, I'm pretty happy with our finances and the long term picture, so giving up 5 years for even $10m wouldn't be worth it.

I think this is a really interesting idea.  If the required payday in this deal changes with age, why is your time worth more when you are older than when you are young?  What is it about having your own death in sight that raises your price tag?

Is this effect related to the OMY effect?  If you suddenly need more and more money to give up your freedom (here a metaphor for your time spent in early retirement), does the rate of increase in the dollar amount rise faster than does your savings, as you approach the date?  That would explain why so many people pick an arbitrary number like $1million, then get to $975k and can't quiiiiiite pull the trigger and thus decide to work One More Year.

I don't know what my answer would have been at, say... 20, but if it were different, that would just be a matter of perspective and education.  At 20, a million dollars seems like both more and less than it seem now (and that's even if we factor in inflation and over the equivilent of $1m today in my 20yo's dollars).  Now, I realize that a million dollars is less than it was then in that I can  fairly easily acquire that much net worth if I want to, so it seems like less money.  And yet is also seems like more money, because I now realize what I need to fund the lifestyle I want in retirement, and it isn't the $10m or whatever most retirement calculators would spit out.  So that $1m is more because it is so much closer to enough.  That, combined with the fact that I realize a can have $1m in the bank quite reasonably mean it would be worth far less in terms if giving up life and freedom.

Regarding the many comparisons to other lifestyles and prison, DH has been in the Navy for about 18 years and he scoffed when I asked he thought it was remotely comparable to prison life.  Granted he is an officer so has better living accommodations (a 6 man room, and at one point even a 2 man room, instead of open berthing, for example), but he still has mostly regular access to email, he pulls in to port occasionally and gets to see cool places and call his dear wife, he isn't looking over his shoulder every time he showers or just turns a corner,  I can send him food and other comfort items, he can trick out his rack (bed) to make it slightly more comfortable, he can generally come and go as he pleases when he's not working (which he is admittedly doing far more than regular labor laws would generally allow!), his job means his life generally has a sense of purpose, etc.

Then there's the fact that what he's doing is actually positioning him to make more money in the civilian job market, not hurting his chances of getting most decent jobs. 

boarder42

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Nope. Im not sure there is any number I'd take in this bargain, but if there is, it definitely isn't $1m.  But really, I'm pretty happy with our finances and the long term picture, so giving up 5 years for even $10m wouldn't be worth it.

I think this is a really interesting idea.  If the required payday in this deal changes with age, why is your time worth more when you are older than when you are young?  What is it about having your own death in sight that raises your price tag?

Is this effect related to the OMY effect?  If you suddenly need more and more money to give up your freedom (here a metaphor for your time spent in early retirement), does the rate of increase in the dollar amount rise faster than does your savings, as you approach the date?  That would explain why so many people pick an arbitrary number like $1million, then get to $975k and can't quiiiiiite pull the trigger and thus decide to work One More Year.

This is actually the approach I was hoping the op was going to go down with this because I think it's a much better thought experiment. I don't personally equate what I do for a living to prison. And I make about 1MM every 5 years. And in 5 years when we plan to FIRE it will likely be closer to 1.5MM for the next 5. I think this question is very equivalent to omy theory.
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WhiteTrashCash

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People already go to prison for 50 years in return for money for retirement. We call that the typical work life.

GOFU

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I think this question is very equivalent to omy theory.

There are a couple of references in the thread to omy theory or omy effect.

I googled this and got nothing that seemed relevant.

Can someone please explain that or provide a link?

THank you.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 05:43:44 AM by GOFU »