No. of Recommendations: 4
What do you all think about a monthly magazine devoted to "Early Financial Independence?"....Publisher? MF? Time?

Well, Time, Inc., has the copyrights in place to support a keen title: People With The Time And Money To Live A Sports Illustrated Kind Of Life. Longer than the average bear might like, but that's never been a big hangup with me, you know.

And question 2 (enough content?) is one of those big fat hanging curve balls you're almost afraid to swing at it's so easy to smash. Remember that old album called "Can 600,000 Elvis Fans All Be Wrong?" Well, we hit the 600,000 mark sometime in mid-summer by my last check of the gross domestic posting (GDP) month-to-month percentage increase (unadjusted).

I'm not so sure about a separate publication. The principles for reaching early financial independence are just an important part of the general topic that goes by the name of "Personal Finance." My question is, why aren't these issues discussed in the existing publications?

The failure to consider our ideas means that the advice they offer is always a little off center. For example, they give advice on tax-free vehicles without considering the issue of what age you'll be wanting to take the assets out. Or they recommend doing what you love so that the money will follow without noting that another way is to do what makes money and follow that with doing what you love.

Why this malpractice in the financial press? Is it because they don't know about our ideas? Well, it's hard for the average person to find out about them because there are so few references leading to them. But I bet Fortune, Money, and Barrons have copies of "Your Money or Your Life" sitting around somewhere, or they should. The ideas have been in published form for at least a decade; what's missing is the reaction. Joe Dominguez pushed the logs together and threw in a match, but no fire got started.

Or is it because the financial writers don't understand the concepts? I can believe they don't understand them entirely. That takes time. It also takes a community discussion, which didn't exist until recently. But the concepts are not complex. If reporters are the enterprising bulldogs they portray themselves as, someone mainstream should be all over this idea. Does anyone believe that the idea of retiring at 40 isn't provocative enough?

So what possibilities does that leave? The suspicion behind my question was that maybe our ideas are disconcerting to the forces standing behind these publications. Advertisers and manufacturers may not be excited by the idea of cutting back consumption spending. Politicians may not be happy with the idea of tax revenues going down as high-income earners drop out of the workplace. Big corporations will have to bid more to attract top talent if our financial independence concepts catch on.

I'm not at the point of spouting off opinions about conspiracies on this one, but more in the mulling it over stage (a stage that usually precedes spouting off by a few weeks). If it's true, though, it really does suggest a downside to reading the standard sources of information. If they are not being written for your benefit, but to push an agenda, they are something less than unhelpful. It can be worse to be misled than just to remain ignorant.

I read a lot about personal finance and yet had never been exposed to the idea of early financial independence until I came upon "Your Money or Your Life," more or less by happenstance. Even then, the ideas would probably not have taken root had I not been ripe to act on them. As it was, I became dedicated to finding confirmation of the ideas put forward by Dominguez, and dedication was what it took until this board came along (now it just takes time).

Why is it so hard to come upon these simple but important principles? In an Age famous for the vast availability of Information? A puzzle to ponder.

I went long again, didn't I? I always start out with the best of intentions, but then one word follows another and there are all those others down at the bottom of the barrel crying out "use me, use me!" "Keen," for example, has been sitting neglected in my toolbox for too many moons. It expresses a common enough concept--"having a fine, sharp cutting edge or point." I'm embarrased by this neglect and resolve to do better by "keen" and all the other good words ("smash" got a well deserved walk around the block this time too). I and my words thank you for your patience as we move forward with this initiative.

If it's any comfort, I'm at least showing some signs of defensiveness on the wordiness matter (but thus far remain unrepentant, it seems!)
Print the post  


What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and Glassdoor #1 Company to Work For 2015! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.