Author Topic: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?  (Read 9920 times)

E.T.

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #50 on: January 23, 2019, 07:18:24 AM »
I see FIRE as the opportunity to be a modern version of the Victorian era "Gentleman scientist" i.e. free from money worries with time for noble scientific, engineering or social pursuits.

This is exactly my goal too. I want to be free to dabble and work on my own ideas.

trollwithamustache

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #51 on: January 23, 2019, 07:38:26 AM »
There have always been oddball groups that form sects/cults and drop out of society or form a commune/alternative settlement and slide off to the side. MMM just did it with more bikes than baptisms.

smoghat

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #52 on: February 11, 2019, 05:25:13 AM »
There was the belief decades ago that as capitalism advanced, people wouldn't have to work nearly as many hours.  That didn't come to pass because almost everyone just worked and worked to consume even more. 

If it continues to grow, then historically I think the FIRE movement will represent the shift in thinking when people finally start converting their extra wealth into time instead of stuff the way it was predicted. 

If it doesn't continue to grow then FIRE probably won't register to history at all other than as perhaps a footnote. 

Fascinating! I was at a party on Saturday and there were plenty of people there who made more money than I ever did, but none of them had retired early. Yes, itís not something people can think of. Maybe itís time to reread Max Weberís classic the Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism. This whole idea of a calling you pursue until you are in the ground seems to still be dominant.

ixtap

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #53 on: February 11, 2019, 12:14:42 PM »
MMMers aim to be folk of independent means:
-either inherited or for a short time worked to accumulate
-often require frugality to live within those means
-largely invested in the 4 percents
-the rest of society is somewhat envious (minimal financial worries, minimal social obligations), but doesn't really know where they fit in the social fabric

For a focus on this class, look at Gaskell's Cranford, but there are also characters in Austen's works. Mr. Weston runs with the gentry, but that seems due to his choice of wife and purchase of Randalls.


Maenad

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #54 on: February 11, 2019, 04:59:57 PM »
I view myself as pretty damn extraordinary! Surely of the first generation in human existence to have the opportunity as a single (but not unpartnered at various times) woman to live independently, safely, and financially securely. FIRE is the icing on the cake.

YES!! I'm married, but knowing that I don't need to be is wondrous.

As for me, I definitely see myself as working on joining the new gentry. I'll be living off of the toil of others through investments, and have the greatest luxury of all - free time. Time is so much more precious than money.

bacchi

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #55 on: February 11, 2019, 07:47:28 PM »
Historically, I already had my walk on part in the war. 

Yeah, but did you trade it for a lead role in a cage?

thesis

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #56 on: April 01, 2019, 10:23:00 AM »
I'm not post-FIRE yet, but I think of the whole movement as life-hacking. We are taking advantage of policies, knowledge, and historical circumstances to pursue custom lifestyles that the general public doesn't believe are possible.

I would also echo the statements by Frankie's Girl in the earlier posts, that I do see myself as being somewhat smarter than the average person. It sounds and even kind of feels arrogant, but I do think it's true in a "stupid is as stupid does" sense of intelligence. The resources exist. The logic exists. But you have to reject the status quo, and that takes guts, IMO.

I think the FIRE movement does draw attention to the fact that we live in a world of gross overproduction that far exceeds our actual necessities, which is why so many people are fully capable of having an 80%+ savings rate. It's an economic mind-bender, and also proof that expenses tend to rise with income, since the vast majority of people who could save that much simply don't. And even those who couldn't save that much, could usually save a hell of a lot more than they do.

ericrugiero

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #57 on: April 18, 2019, 03:29:51 PM »
I think of myself as part of the upper middle class in terms of my net worth and my family household income (husband still works).  However when we have enough for both of us to retire I think I would consider us part of the new gentry. The reality is that other people have to work hard in order for our investments to grow enough that we can live off the growth. Most of those people won't be able to retire, they'll just work until they die.   I guess I choose to ignore the suffering of everyone else because that's the system and I can't change it and I just want to enjoy my piece of the pie. I suppose that makes me a little bit horrible and selfish.  That's the reality but I still don't want to work anymore. I do a little volunteer work to assuage my rich guilt.

I don't think you have anything to feel bad about just because you save enough to retire.  Tons of people make more than your family (I assume) makes.  Most of them spend every dime they make and then some.  Your path is smarter than theirs and gives you added freedom.  You are (I assume) investing in companies which provides other people the opportunity to have a job.  This helps society as a whole. 

My opinion is that there is nothing inherently wrong or dirty about saving and investing money.  There is obviously a potential to "waste" your life and be totally selfish with the extra time and money that provides you.  We should all be willing to help others with our time, money and knowledge.  The freedom of FIRE allows you to do good or evil. 

SwordGuy

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Re: How do post-fire people view themselves in historical context?
« Reply #58 on: April 18, 2019, 06:07:05 PM »
My opinion is that there is nothing inherently wrong or dirty about saving and investing money.  There is obviously a potential to "waste" your life and be totally selfish with the extra time and money that provides you.  We should all be willing to help others with our time, money and knowledge.  The freedom of FIRE allows you to do good or evil.

Work is not equal to spending your time in a productive fashion that is good for society.