Consumption society

Dr. Housing Bubble has a good post on how the median-income family can't afford a middle-class lifestyle any more. That was fine as long as houses were going up 10% or 20% a year. Who needs income when you can take money out of your house every year? But that game is over, and living a middle-class lifestyle now means going deep into debt to keep up with the Joneses. People are selling themselves into debt slavery for shiny new trinkets.

To quote from Joshua:
A strange game. The only winning move is not to play.

Max out your 401(k). Don't buy a new car. Don't buy more house than you can afford (in fact, don't buy any house for a few more years!). Live on 75% of your after-tax income.

Your grandparents, and probably your parents, lived this way. What makes you different? You really want to be eating dog food in your old age?

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