Category Archives: Celebrities and Money

Money Basics: The Rule of One

“There is brilliance in simplicity.” – Bruce Lee

Do not listen to those who say live for today or have to treat yourself or have fun. Those are the same people in debt up to their eyeballs.

Avoid debt, especially credit card debt, at all costs. The money paid to these institutions lines their pockets while you go broke.

Case in point, LL Cool J, the famous rapper, entrepreneur, and actor had some telling advice as he was quoted as saying that “I lease a Honda Accord for $399 a month while other rappers are going broke”.

Therefore, buy a smaller house, car, and wardrobe. The money you save can go in the bank. You can earn interest instead of paying it when you don’t spend.

I recently read that Americans are in over a trillion dollars in each category of auto, student loans and credit card debt.  An all-time high! I bet.

Considering that everyone or system of some kind seems to be in cahoots to separate you from your hard earned money; it is no wonder that the savings rate in America is so abysmal.

For example, you need a college degree to get a good job, i.e., one with good benefits like health care and a retirement plan as many low-paying positions offer none.

You now have to sell a kidney to afford the ever increasing cost of college. So what do you do instead? You finance it.

If you are one of the lucky ones, as only 33 percent of adults hold a college degree meaning 67 percent may be struggling to find decent work and wages. In contrast, in 1940, a mere 4.6 percent had a four-year college degree.

Don’t get me wrong. There are many out there without a degree that are doing well but, they in many times are the exception and not the rule.

Then you go out there and get a job now that you have the coveted golden ticket… err uh I mean a college degree. Jobs nowadays pay peanuts so you have to finance a wardrobe, car, home, and furniture.

And dating? Forget about it. That costs money. If you go out for more than coffee, you have to finance it.  That’s right, you charge it on the plastic because that’s the only money you have and thing you own that the finance company won’t repo.

If we could ask how the finance companies feel about customers no longer wanting access to their credit lines, in my opinion, I suspect a humdrum response. A customer wants to return their credit card as they no longer can afford to continue payments.

For example, the exchange may go something like this.

Question: Do we turn the card over to you as we no longer want it?

Answer: You can keep the card, but we want back all the things that clothe, transport, and shelter you.

When you can no longer afford your automobile. Your car can be repossessed by the bank.

When you can no longer afford your mortgage. The bank forecloses on your home.

It may take time for the finance company to pick up its property, but it will happen if you can’t pay.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs says you really need the basics first and foremost which is food, clothing, and shelter. After that, you must make the slow ascension up to the top of the needs hierarchy pyramid; culminating in self-actualization: one’s full potential.

So let’s recap.

You do and have the following: Go to college. Finance it. Get a job. Finance a car to get to work. Get a mortgage to finance a home or rent an apartment to have a roof over your head. Buy a wardrobe because you need professional clothes as the t-shirts and hoodies no longer work. Stagnating wages. Tons of debt. Pay your bills. No money left for saving and investing to get out of the hole. Rinse and repeat.

The only way to get out of the proverbial rat race is to buck the trend.

Start at a community or low cost local college. Live like a broke college student until your debt is repaid. Then put into practice living like a real adult. College is all about theories, but being an adult is about practical application.

This is where the rule of one will serve you well.

One house, one car, one nice piece of jewelry.

The problem is that many people let their lives become too complex. Simplify it.

One bank, one credit card, one motorcycle, etc. etc.

Keeping it simple with this rule can save you hundreds of thousands of dollars over a lifetime. That is money that can be invested or spent doing other things like starting a business or traveling to see family.

I know you may have learned a lot from the post above and it may take some time to sink in.

So let’s keep it simple. Just do one rule at a time.