The fundamental truths of saving, investing, and compounding are not being adequately taught in our schools. If only at a young age we all embraced the miracle of compounding and the enemy of time lost. The price of delaying such learning is dear. Financial independence is at stake. The key is to plan ahead. Personal financial thinking matched up with Rule Maker investing is a very powerful duo.
On to today's report. The more I learn about spending, saving, and investing, the more surprised I am that I didn't learn these concepts at an earlier age.
I spent 20 years getting educated at some wonderful schools. I was extremely fortunate. From those experiences, I've made great friends and learned from some of the very best teachers, guides, advisors, and communicators anywhere. And the most important lessons I learned from all my schooling were to be self-critical and to never stop learning.
Yet as wonderful as my "formal" education was, throughout it I never encountered a rudimentary class on spending, saving, and investing.
I learned how to apply the Pythagorean Theorem. I wrote iambic pentameter, laughingly translated Catullus from Latin to English, and read every single one of Emily Dickinson's more than 1700 published poems, twice (no kidding). I watched history unfold. Attila the Hun died of a nose bleed. King George III fell from mindfulness to madness. Frederick Douglass counseled Abraham Lincoln through the Civil War. Orville Wright rode a bi-plane 120 feet off Kill Devil Hill in North Carolina.
And through it, I kept reading. I studied -- and not always with great success -- biology, trigonometry, Russian history, generative syntax, the Inquisition, oceanography, Irish sociology, the Socratic method, human sexuality, medieval poetry, bioethics, 20th century American foreign policy, Shakespeare, Montana's economy, climatology, Chicago-style jazz, impressionism, rat psychology, Latin, and the life's works of Isaac Bashevis Singer.
I could go on, and you could to. All of these topics studied, all of these subjects learned, too much of the memories forgotten -- yet never a required course in the importance of savings, the role of currency, the pursuit of prosperity, the power of economic opportunity, and the benefits of financial independence in our lives. Simple truths all, and easily prepared for simple, Foolish minds.
My disbelief at this hit me again profoundly this week when I sat down in the woods of Western Massachusetts and read the #2 bestseller on Soapbox.com. It's a 23-page report published by Rob Bennett entitled "The Secrets of Retiring Early." Now, I don't agree with every one of his conclusions (that wouldn't really be Foolish). But the elegant simplicity of his ideas throughout warms the heart and startles the brain. I thought I'd share a few of his conclusions tonight that I very much believe:
I know, for a few, this will make my report sound like an infomercial. So be it. Here's a link to Rob Bennett's Soapbox and the reviews of his report. It's priced $10, and as always, carries our requisite 100% money-back guarantee if you don't like it. I did.
Finally, whether you purchase the report or not, cruise on over to Rob Bennett's (Hocus1) Soapbox message folder, read his free sample writings there, and ask questions. I see solid personal financial thinking matched up with Rule Maker investing as a very powerful duo. By building a plan of attack, taking action, and having fun, you can reap rewards that will make the Cicero and the quadratic equations and the 19th century French literature that much sweeter.
Tom Gardner, Fool