I am a dumbass.
If I had the good sense to start investing in high school, I could have easily accumulated $10,000 in income-producing assets by now.
I didn’t have any inheritance or allowance. I only needed the self-discipline to invest at least part of my paycheck while I lived with my parents. This good sense would have put me on the fast track to retiring by age 55 or younger.
In spite of my 10-year loss of time, retiring by 55 is still feasible. I just need to learn more quickly and act more aggressively.
The first thing new investors must learn is how to control frivolous spending.
Over Spring Break, I worked out my income statement for my current financial situation and discovered that I should have been turning a profit of $250 per month for the past two years. However, instead of an expanding bottom line, I have an expanding waistline because I eat too much fast food.
This does not mean that graduate assistants are rich. My gross stipend is approximately equal to $8 per hour working full time. While socialists will insist that I am poor because I do not earn a “living wage,” I have already established that the real cause of my poverty is negative cash flow.
Millions of people suffer from negative cash flow because only the wealthy give their children a sound financial education. The rest of us must figure it out on our own, and only a handful succeed. My financial education began only weeks ago when a friend lent me the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad by self-made millionaire Robert Kiyosaki.
As it turns out, a six-figure salary does not guarantee wealth. People with bad spending habits will continue those habits no matter how much money they make.
That is the failure of welfare!
People get more money but still don’t know how to manage it properly. The wealthy will reclaim their wealth because they know how. The poor will simply have more doodads.
Instead of groveling at the boss’s feet, the poor will grovel at the government’s feet. Neither position will bring financial security let alone financial independence.
Welfare is doomed to fail because it lacks education. Socialists cannot provide financial education. If they could, they wouldn’t be socialists. They’d be wealthy.
Anyone who truly cares about his or her financial future has a personal responsibility to learn how to manage his or her money and to make use of what he or she learns. Kiyosaki has written a series of Rich Dad books, and there are newsletters, magazines and other publications that anyone can use to become wealthy. If you don’t want to spend money, go to the library.
When I succeed in amassing wealth, I won’t need welfare. But if I fail, I won’t deserve welfare.
Don Norvell is a physics graduate assistant and a point/counterpoint columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]