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Don't forget that you'd also have to start paying for cable TV from the day you were born. If you wait until you're 20 to start paying for your own cable, 50 years of bills gets you to age 70 - hardly an early retirement.

I read the article more as saying that if you plug small leaks and eliminate things that are not important to you in favor of retirement savings, you will get further ahead than you can imagine.

I think a lot of people have a tendency to look at small expenses as being insignificant, and don't realize that they can really add up. I think the cable was just an example. In my house, for instance, we have basic cable and don't pay for any premium channels because they have no value for us. Others may decide those premium channels do have value, but they don't mind not buying the fancy coffee and make theirs at home instead.

I read the article as saying that understanding your own values and priorities and applying that to your own budget/expenses will help you to trim the things that bring no value and add that money to your long-term savings. That, I think, is a good message.
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