Money is power. Never forget that.

Favorite quotations, etc.
Seneca
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Seneca » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:25 pm

Felix wrote:I would guess that few people on this forum (as most are INTx) have much lust for "real power" and would rather be free to just do as they please.
I think many on the forum wish to wield power over others, just maybe not directly through personal wealth (and probably only because most of us can't truly fathom being a centimillionaire or billionaire anyway).

What would you call advocating any and all political action, other than that which is to reduce government?

Seneca
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Seneca » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:26 pm

Spartan_Warrior wrote:
Ego wrote:Not being under the power of other people is not the same as being free.
I'm having trouble wrapping my head around this. To me, not being under the power of other people is exactly what freedom is. Can you clarify?
Freedom from others and freedom from self.

ERE is powerful because it intentionally encompasses both.

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Ego
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Ego » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:28 pm

Spartan_Warrior wrote:
Ego wrote:Not being under the power of other people is not the same as being free.
I'm having trouble wrapping my head around this. To me, not being under the power of other people is exactly what freedom is. Can you clarify?
Extreme example; Bill is under the power of no one (except maybe Melinda). Bill is not free to go for a run by himself around town.

Less extreme: Fred is under the power of no one thanks to $1m in investments from his corporate gig. The spectre of inflation is so terrifying to Fred that he will never be free to enjoy life.
Last edited by Ego on Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Spartan_Warrior
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Spartan_Warrior » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:29 pm

@Jenny: I suppose I'm thinking of "free" in more of an actual, physical sense than in terms of psychological state or a sense of agency. You seem to be thinking more along the lines of the latter when you say things like "waiting x number of years to have enough money to feel free/powerful, or choosing to feel that way today".

I took the red pill years ago, but here I am still doing labor that doesn't interest me under terms I don't control. Why? Because I lack sufficient power--that is, control over/access to the resources I need. "Arranging your life to match your idea of freedom" is exactly what requires power, as anyone still stuck in the so-called accumulation phase knows all too well.

I do agree that the amount of power needed to achieve "freedom" can be generated by other means than money (e.g. self-sufficiency, producing rather than consuming, etc).

@Seneca: "What would you call advocating any and all political action, other than that which is to reduce government?"

*Smacks forehead* Well, this was an interesting discussion while it lasted. :lol:

jacob
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by jacob » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:30 pm

Aren't you guys simply discussing the difference between freedom-from and freedom-to?

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:34 pm

Seneca wrote:
Felix wrote: What would you call advocating any and all political action, other than that which is to reduce government?
On par with the one aiming to "reduce government". (Come on, you knew that would be my answer :-) No need to start this here. ;) )
Last edited by Felix on Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:35 pm

@jacob Yes, they are. Hence I think it's a semantic debate not worth getting into.

@jp: Your desire to distinguish between power from money and power from ideology is useful and important, but unrelated to the distinction between freedom and power that others in the thread are trying to make.

Also, I rarely do this, but this is an important and very personal thread to me. Any more references to libertarian vs. socialist ideological debates will get deleted. It's entirely unrelated and you know it.

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:37 pm

There's freedom in terms of mindset (internal freedom) and freedom from others (external freedom). I think what SW aimed at was external freedom.

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:40 pm

Yes, there's freedom from yourself (i.e. mindsets that are holding you back) and freedom from others. I feel like I achieved freedom from myself before I discovered ERE when I realized there was more to life than academic prestige. Which may explain why the ideological side of ERE is less interesting to me personally than the more practical side's focus on skill mastery, capital accumulation, and low expenses.

Spartan_Warrior
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Spartan_Warrior » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:47 pm

secretwealth wrote:Any more references to libertarian vs. socialist ideological debates will get deleted.
Just have to say I personally hate seeing comments like this even more than I hate the sounding of the ideological war horns... I remember the blissful days when I didn't even know this forum had moderators.

(Note I'm not saying the threat shouldn't have been issued, merely that I hate seeing it.)

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:48 pm

Agreed--I miss the days when moderation was unnecessary.

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:50 pm

Internal freedom is probably helpful in attaining external freedom. It also may be the missing freedom for some who are good at the external side.

Internal freedom may be independent from the external freedom after you've reached enlightenment. :-)

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JohnnyH
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by JohnnyH » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:54 pm

Once I got the shield I realized I'd probably never have much of a sword and to pursue my [relatively] impotent sword for the majority of my life would be a fool's errand... So I'm turning my shield into a fortress (self-sufficiency).

Having the power to say "No." is incredibly satisfying... Funny, it's almost unrelated to money as sustenance farmers, and even the homeless have this power.
secretwealth wrote:Also, I rarely do this, but this is an important and very personal thread to me. Any more references to libertarian vs. socialist ideological debates will get deleted. It's entirely unrelated and you know it.
secret wields the banhammer? I demand mod representation for the Libertarians! :lol:
Last edited by JohnnyH on Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:56 pm

I promise to shut up.

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jennypenny
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by jennypenny » Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:05 pm

SW--Just reminding you of how you started this thread...

"I was thinking of posting this on my journal, but I think it deserves broader discussion."

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:27 pm

Felix wrote:Internal freedom is probably helpful in attaining external freedom. It also may be the missing freedom for some who are good at the external side.

Internal freedom may be independent from the external freedom after you've reached enlightenment. :-)
There is an important distinction to be made between absolute internal freedom and partial internal freedom. I'd say that absolute internal freedom is pretty much non-existent; while it's possible to shackle yourself to one idea (consumerism), it's also possible to free yourself from that idea and shackle yourself to another one. In my case, I gave up consumerism for academic prestige nearly 15 years ago. That doesn't mean I was any freer than the average wage slave--in fact, I'd say I was at least on par if not less free.

@jp: Broad discussion is good. Unrelated tangents on ideological bugbears are not.

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:39 pm

Yes, one can make yourself a slave to many different ideals. There is a talk on youtube by David Foster Wallace (this is water) where he says that the thing you worship will enslave or destroy you. If you worship beauty you will always feel ugly, if you worship knowledge you will always feel ignorant, if you worship money you will always feel poor. I guess academic status is one of these things.

What I liked about the original post was the recognition of the materialistic side of things as important. I think there is a part in Kiyosaki's Rich Dad Poor Dad (I don't like the guy, but the book is pretty good) where he goes into how it is ridiculous to say that money is not important only to spend your entire life trying to make enough and that it's better to recognize it as important and consequently not spend your entire life enslaved to make it.

I have always had the thoughts that going for money means being a sell-out, that it is somehow demeaning etc. and to some degree I still do even though not to the extent that I once used to. But it is simply a recognition of the reality of things to accept the importance of money in today's society.

Your post really drove the idea home.

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jennypenny
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by jennypenny » Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:58 pm

secretwealth wrote:@jp: Broad discussion is good. Unrelated tangents on ideological bugbears are not.
Do you remember this thread? viewtopic.php?f=3&t=3877&start=0
It veered off so quickly, I changed the thread title so you could continue your discussion on reserve banking (which wasn't even remotely related to my OP).

I guess I'm confused as to why it's ok for you to do it to others' threads, but when it's your thread, you shut people down?

It's a forum. It happens.

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Felix
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Felix » Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:12 pm

Note to self: Send more PMs, derail less threads. :-(

fips
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by fips » Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:50 pm

secretwealth wrote: Also, I rarely do this, but this is an important and very personal thread to me. Any more references to libertarian vs. socialist ideological debates will get deleted. It's entirely unrelated and you know it.
In my pursuit of ERE I just saw freedom of speech go down the drain :lol: ... just messing.

To bring back some smiles to this thread:
http://9gag.com/search?query=freedom

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Ego
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by Ego » Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:56 pm

secretwealth wrote:
jacob wrote:Aren't you guys simply discussing the difference between freedom-from and freedom-to?
@jacob Yes, they are. Hence I think it's a semantic debate not worth getting into.
It is not just semantics. It is the fundamental philosophical concepts of freedom and it applies here.

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/liber ... -negative/

Finding balance between negative freedom (freedom-from) and positive freedom (freedom-to) is important.

"Money-is-power" is skewed toward the fact that money can buy freedom-from. It is focused toward the negative-freedom. Are there consequences to having a negative-freedom focus? I believe so. Overcoming constraints is important, but it is not the only thing, at least in my mind.

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Tue Aug 27, 2013 4:24 pm

@Ego: That's a different issue. Yes, I fully agree that the distinction between freedom-from and freedom-to exists, but it's different from the discussion of whether money brought me freedom or power.

I would say, in general, I am more focused on what you call negative freedom (freedom from) rather than positive freedom. I think it's because I view ERE as a kind of insurance policy (i.e. it gives me freedom from having to work again) rather than a fundamental ideology (i.e. it gives me freedom to do X or Y).

paz
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by paz » Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:16 pm

I know a guy who turned down a rehire offer from a job that paid 20% more than the job he'd taken after the layoff, simply because the rehire offer came with a mandatory 'improvement plan.' If he hadn't had the post-layoff job, he'd probably have taken the rehire offer. Because he had an option, albeit a lower paying one, he didn't need to submit himself to bureaucratic nonsense. That's an everyday, non ERE example of how money brought some power to his table.

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GandK
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by GandK » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:12 am

@SW

Late to the party, but loved your OP. Thanks for sharing!

secretwealth
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Re: Money is power. Never forget that.

Post by secretwealth » Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:56 am

Thanks, GandK. I appreciate that. :)

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