Friday, November 19, 2010

Poverty Can Strike at Any Moment: Be Ready

You want an idea that’s so good that nobody will ever implement it? How about this one: Live poorly. Always be ready to be poor. Be ready for poverty to strike at any moment. Learn to live like a person in the Third World.

Poverty is unpredictable. You cannot ever be so rich that you can’t lose all of it and then some. You can’t be so rich that you cannot ever get sick and be unable to spend all of it. It’s best if you never become so helplessly addicted to your wealth that you cannot function without it.

You don’t have to sell your things and move out of your mansion to experience it, just set a really low budget for your day-to-day life. Shop at the dollar stores, thrift shops and discount supermarkets. Eat a limited, inexpensive range of foods, bought in said supermarkets, or grown in your yard. Your “treats” (even poor people have them)should be simple and be far enough apart from each other that no matter how simple they are, are still “treats”. When the dollar menu at McDonald’s taste good, you are on the right track.

The idea is to reduce the emotional trauma of the fall, the potential of which is always there. To get some resources (psychological and otherwise) ready for when your quality of life changes.

Your quality of life always changes. Sooner or later, if you live long enough, your quality of life changes. You get old, you get dependent, and you get fearful because you are dependent. Everybody is trying to rob you, the world feels alien, and everybody thinks that you are a feebleminded, doddering old fool, and you hate that, mostly because you are inclined to think they are right.

Be ready is the point here. Know what it feels like before you have to know what it feels like.

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