I think this “work till 40, save aggressively and retire early” is a flawed proposition. Why do you think the billionaires like Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger haven’t retired? Are they still working for money? I don’t think so.
Debt makes the growth possible. Profits make the growth probable. But those two things by themselves still don’t explain the breakneck speed at which the modern economy is cruising. Debt plus profit are the necessary ingredients but the catalyst is something else.
Napoleon Bonaparte, the Emperor of France, is considered one of the greatest commanders in history, and his wars and campaigns are studied at military schools worldwide. But in 1809, he was defeated. Not in a war but in a game of chess. Bonaparte was a military leader, not a chess grandmaster so his defeat in chess shouldn’t have come as a surprise except that he lost against Mechanical Turk — an Automaton Chess Player.
Mechanical Turk was the brainchild of Wolfgang von Kempelen. The Turk won most of the games played during its demonstrations around Europe and the Americas for nearly 84 years, playing and defeating many challengers including statesmen Benjamin Franklin. (more…)
Today, we live in a world of extreme complexity. And this extreme complexity is the result of immense know how that we’ve accumulated over last few hundred years’ of scientific revolution. Unfortunately, this know-how has become unmanageable. The volume and the complexity of our knowledge have gone far beyond our individual ability to translate the benefits of that knowledge accurately and reliably. Knowledge has both saved us and burdened us.