Immediate and delayed gratification

College-Co-ed-Has-Bad-Debt-Goo-34cd29a0f0dc2617f07a89763f3b5104-collegecoedA U.S. college student has written to a debt management advisor, asking how to reverse her bad debts and get back on track.

The advisor gave a lot of financial advice about percentages and so on but skimmed over his real advice – the young woman’s change in attitude and it’s not totally certain she has done that. My advice woud be a ittle different.

1. Have a qualification and an up to date non-qualification [called NVQs over here] in her chosen field.

2. Understand that she and most others have been caught in a political game of the credit providers to sever the connect between prices and income, with the former exponentially increasing, necessitating credit debt to maintain exactly the same lifestyle and therefore ensuring the hegemony of the bankers in society.

3. See that there are two types of people, in terms of their psychological makeup – the scrimpers and savers who try to live within their actual means and who understand the term “delayed gratification” … and then the spenders of the world [the vast majority] who follow the dictum “immediate gratification” and its corollary “credit debt” and who find it fine to accumulate material goods at someone else’s expense and to pay debt off with more debt.

If this young lady understands that in the current climate and trying to go through college, she cannot have all the things others appear to have but which they don’t really own at all, then she’s crossed the great divide between those who will eventually have and those who won’t.

3 comments for “Immediate and delayed gratification

  1. December 29, 2009 at 14:22

    I’m all in favour of having a few physical possessions, but never had a problem saving up for them. If I tot up the replacement cost of my computer, mobile phone, second hand car, a few suits and pairs of jeans, TV, DVD/VCR combi, hi-fi, iPod and so on, I doubt it’s more than £10,000, maybe as little as £5,000? I fail to see how a normal person couldn’t acquire all this stuff in two or three years once they get a job by saving up and buying it.

    You might be overlooking that 80% or 90% of debt in the UK is mortgages to buy overpriced houses (and mortgages from equity release). The Home-Owner-Ists have managed to twist the logic to say that taking on a crippling mortgage debt is a sign of being grown up and responsible, which is just one of the many lies and contradictions that the Home-Owner-ists use to paper of the cracks of their economic ideology.

  2. December 29, 2009 at 14:44

    The more debt you get into the more you end up paying for everything and everything spirals out of control.

  3. dearieme
    December 29, 2009 at 17:38

    Car? Suits? Jeans? You extravagant bastard, Mark.

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