Click here to Download Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book by Jacob Lund Fisker Language English having PDF Size 2.2 MB and No of Pages 297.
When I grew up, I dutifully went to school and did my homework. For the most part, schooling was about sitting still for 45 minutes while doing simple tasks that the teacher handed out. I was very good at sitting still and thus I was a good student. I learned how to add, multiply, divide, and subtract. I learned how to punctuate a sentence and how to spell. I learned something about chemistry. Then I learned something about physics and geology.
Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book by Jacob Lund Fisker
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At some point, the teacher introduced tests and grades. Test-taking became the primary objective; learning secondary. We had the option to quickly forget what we had spent the past year learning after the test was done. In other words, we were being taught to be “flexible.” Later, there were job fairs and educational fairs telling us how to write résumés and how to interview so we could get jobs.
Yet, I never learned why the world worked the way it did, and in retrospect, I think nobody ever even asked the question. Everybody always only focused on the “what” and “where;” no questions asked. But as I started my career as a research assistant in physics, I started getting interested in all the “whys” of life. As I studied and thought about various fundamental questions such as, “Why do we use money instead of promises or favors?”
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“Why do we live in houses and not boats or cars?”; “Why are there usually 2-4 people in a home and not 10-20?”; “Why do we move away from home?”; “Why do we work until we’re 65?”–all while getting assaulted with well-intended “encouragements” that I should make sure to open a retirement account before I was 30 and put 15% of net income into it; that I should buy a house; that married homeowners were more prosperous and therefore I better get married too.
That I should buy a new car; that people would like me more if I wore a particular kind of brand clothing, and that I would enjoy a beverage more if it came from a certain kind of bottle. I was beginning to feel that something was wrong. “Why is the emperor not wearing any clothes?” I started getting an uneasy feeling that something about the world was not quite right. Nobody explained the “why.”
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Sure, they could explain how I should first purchase a “starter home,” so I could “upgrade” later. But nobody could or would explain why I should buy a house in the first place. Nobody could or would explain why I should have a career, only that career development was important. Our culture was founded on the idea that maximizing production equals maximizing happiness.
In the past, pursuing this goal was admirable since any increase in production resulted in an increase in well-being: better food, better medicine, better clothing, better housing, better work, and better living. At some point the focus changed from better to more: more food, more medicine, more clothing, more bedrooms, more bathrooms, and more work. But can we honestly say this still results in better living and greater well-being?
The changing focus–from better to more–signaled the transition from a producer economy to a consumer economy. Whereas the biggest problem of the producer economy was how to produce and distribute enough goods to survive–a problem that still hasn’t been solved on a global scale–the biggest problem of a consumer economy is how to clear the market of overproduced goods. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book
There are two ways to solve this problem: either produce less or increase consumption. Various strategies for working less, such as more vacation time and longer educations, decrease productivity. Yet, there are many more strategies for consuming more–government strategies as well as corporate strategies. Others attempt to create meaning through collecting; that is, a systematic form of hoarding.
Entire industries have been created that appeal to the hoarding instinct, creating things to collect with no use value whatsoever. These things don’t even have any intrinsic or collectible value, but consumers collect them anyway and work hard to do so. For many, status is associated with expensive items thought to be fitting for someone with a higher salary. Certain jobs are associated with certain levels of spending.
This means that the price itself is often considered a complementary good–the item is considered desirable simply because it’s expensive. This locks one into a spiral of “upgrading”: An expensive shirt leads to the purchase of an expensive suit; the car must match the expensive home. An increase in pay allows one to buy goods which previously seemed like a luxury. Another increase leads to another upgrade. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book
Soon these become a normal part of life and people start identifying with them. When you identify with an object, you’re defined by the object, then controlled by it, and ultimately owned by it. If you relate to your possessions, you’re owned by your stuff, and it will make many of your decisions for you. This trap is not only mental, but also physical. When moving into a new place, there’s a tendency to rapidly fill all rooms with furniture (and TVs)–perhaps there’s a taboo against empty rooms?
Those extra rooms, which are rarely used–the so-called media rooms, the basement bar, the craftsroom–are then used for storage space and slowly fill with stuff that people “need” yet never use. In fact, in many houses, those rooms, like attached garages, serve no purpose other than storing unused stuff and furniture. This of course makes it challenging to move into somewhere smaller.
In particular, the very idea of moving is rejected because it requires too much effort. So not only are people attached to their stuff, they’re also attached to their homes. Continuously accruing stuff soon makes any home too small, regardless of its size. Therefore much effort has gone into optimizing total square footage including repurposing the garage and parking the car on the street. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book
People don’t seem to realize that the quest to bring more possessions in through the front door is a chronic disease, and that the shortage of space is a symptom rather than an underlying problem. Consequently, modern homes are mostly big, poorly constructed, poorly located, and financially leveraged. Like the big gas guzzlers used to drive back and forth to them, they’re very energy-intensive, and thus, in light of nascent resource constraints, are also outdated and old-fashioned.
Complexity provides an advantage over simplicity because of its greater functionality. To wit, more is possible using a set of tools compared to a single tool. Complexity allows understanding/manipulating/using the same thing in many ways, which is useful for perspective, and understanding/manipulating/using many things in the same way, which is useful for synthesis (by using analogous methods.
Complexity, therefore, results in flexibility. Increasing complexity always increases capability and adaptability. The human species is probably the best example of this. Humans have the most complex brains of all species, and as a result, we’ve become the dominant species and been able to adapt to practically all parts of the Earth. However, complexity also has a cost because maintaining increasing levels of complexity requires increasingly more effort. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book Download
For instance, the human brain uses an enormous amount of energy relative to the size of the body it controls compared to other mammals. This implies that there is an optimal point of functionality where the efficiency–that is, the ratio of functionality to maintenance and storage cost–peaks. To solve the problem, the cause of the problem must be understood. However, this is difficult and often impossible! Often there isn’t one single cause.
The human brain seems to be almost incapable of dealing with problems that have multiple causes. For instance, what is the cause of a financial crisis? It usually has at least ten different causes, exactly because a crisis can be postponed by treating individual symptoms, after which the system collapses altogether; any reasonably intelligent person blaming just a few of the many causes probably has other motivations.
To simplify problem-solving, it’s paramount that problems remain “small, slow, and diversified.” This, of course, is anathema in a culture that prides itself on being bigger, faster, and more focused. Nevertheless, small, slow, and diversified must serve as a natural delimiter to remain on top of the situation. While this may not be understood by everybody else. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book Download
It’s fortunately possible to live a life based on this simple philosophy on your own, by not engaging in things that are beyond your comprehension and control. This typically means technical fibers like polypropylene or similar. If you don’t plan on sweating much or if evaporative cooling is actually desired, cotton is good. The midlayer should be sweat-absorbing and warming. The best material for this is wool; down if it is really cold and you can keep it dry; wool works fine wet.
If you can’t afford wool, you can also use fleece. Cotton will also do in a pinch. The outer layer should be water- and wind-proof. This combination provides the most comfortable combination. Waxed cotton is probably the most durable if you plan to keep your jacket for more than a decade, since it’s easier to refurbish than using water-repellent chemicals on your technical jackets. Also consider that zippers do wear out and they are harder to replace than buttons, which anyone can replace.
In sunny conditions, the clothes should be UV resistant (darker and tightly woven); in warm conditions, the clothes should be loose and allow air to pass and cool–don’t ruin heat adaptation by switching on air conditioning; in cold conditions, the clothes should be tight, particularly at the sleeves and collar, much like the business suit mentioned earlier. Also consider that the radiative heating component is strong for dark colors and weak for light colors. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book Free
Hence, darker winter jackets provide more heat but also greater volatility. Instead of a growing collection of clothing, much of which is obsolete or not generally useful, what is needed is a strategy to increase the number of outfits while minimizing the number of individual items. The way insurance works is that a company takes premiums from a pool of people and pays it out to those who have accidents and make claims.
Actuaries are generally very good as estimating how accident-prone groups of people are, and the difference between take-in and pay-out is generally low (this is also known as the combined ratio). Insurance companies thus make their money by holding your money, called the float, and investing it for their own profit. Since the insurance company is willing to take the bet in return for the proceeds from investing the float.
It means that you should not take the bet unless your financial loss would be catastrophic–or you know better than the actuaries. Furthermore, you also have the opportunity to proactively reduce the risks. If you think about the potential consequences of everything you do–that is, careful–you can substantially reduce your risk. On the other hand, if you know your behavior is risky, paying for insurance might be worthwhile, unless the insurance company also knows this. Early Retirement Extreme PDF Book Free
In which case they will simply charge you more. Many insurance plans are better thought of as financing than insurance. This holds for insurance plans that pay for regular maintenance such as health and dental. Here the cost of the maintenance gets added to the premium along with a profit for the insurance company, similar to how a credit company collects interest. They would not offer these fully loaded plans unless it was unprofitable for you.
Preventing catastrophic, that is, irrecoverable losses is the only reason to carry insurance. Effectively, this means carrying as high a deductible as possible while at the same time having enough funds, which you can invest, to cover losses up to that deductible. Oftentimes, people carry too much insurance simply because they don’t have the money on hand to cover the deductible.
This shouldn’t be a problem for you though, and so you’ll profit. Another common argument is that the monthly premium is low. This is like saying that a stock is cheap because it trades for $3. This argument is common for renter’s insurance. However, this is a case where it should be easy to have the funds to replace anything that was lost which can be bought.