Sunday, December 21, 2014

Warning: Strong Opinions Ahead, Sensitive People: DO NOT CLICK

Once I started this blog, one of my main aims is to educate myself about everything and anything that is relevant and has to do with personal finance.

I have made a commitment to myself that I will not stop learning until I am totally comfortable and satisfied with my knowledge that I have attained. It might take forever. Lifelong learning yo. Education can come in many forms. A teacher would be nice, but I doubt it would be cheap, and I also doubt the ability for the teacher to provide me depth of knowledge in the breadth of subjects that I am interested in. Therefore, I think that the most accessible, cheap and unrestricted form of education is still through books.

This year, I have already reviewed 3 books:

Successful Investing is a Process by Jacques Lussier
The Nature of Risk by David X Martin
Investing in REITs by Ralph L. Block

and on top of these books, I still have more to go, and I am collecting more and more, every so often!

I have already read through Value Averaging, All About Asset Allocation and I am finishing a very tough book to read about LIFE INSURANCE. Yes, kill me right? It's painful to read, but it is hands-down an AMAZING read. So, look forward to book reviews of those books soon! I have been so busy lately that I haven't had the time to do so many things!

Okay, now comes the heavy part that some people, who thinks that humans are beautiful, special unique snowflakes who are all different, yet somehow equal, will be pissed off to read.

I am a believer of multiple intelligences. Someone who is not a math genius can be an excellent strategist. Someone who is a poor writer can be an excellent singer. The list goes on. Different people have their strengths and weaknesses and few among us are lucky to have it all. Being intelligent allows your opinions to weight more in the areas of your expertise. Being intelligent across many things merely allows more of your opinions to carry weight across more topics. Being intelligent in a few things does not mean that your opinion is irrelevant. However, it does mean that your opinion is respected and limited to fewer areas.

So what does all this have to do with anything?

I don't know about you guys, but I vehemently HATE people with an air of arrogance telling me what to do, when they don't know what they are talking about. Why pretend you are an expert about something, when you are not? Knowing one obscure magical tidbit of information or having an experience with the subject matter does not justify you as an expert. Opinion is totally fine, people are entitled to their own opinions. Many people have many opinions. Should they all be listened to? I think not. People with no expertise in such areas should not impose their asinine half-wit opinions on others that know more.

Freedom of speech is one thing, Equality of speech is another. You can say stuff, but it could be all be shit. Maybe you even think that what I am typing now is shit. That's totally fine. It's the internet, I can type whatever I want (sort of, anyway). However, equality of speech? You determine whether my opinion is worth a space in your brain. You can write me off as an idiot and never come back to my blog. That's fine too. Stupid people have the right to say things too, but it is up to other people to determine if what they are saying has any value or worth. Voting with your attention.


So anyway, why the sudden rage and angsty post?

I've been seeing lots of "chatter" on my social media lately. I see a lot of people flaming and hating because a person has a certain opinion. I know the way that I might describe it sounds very mild, but the hate is so strong. These people link a person's view to his entire worth as human being. You don't hate the government? Burn in hell you (XYZ Political Party) dog! Too many stupid people with too many stupid opinions, in my opinion.

I was talking to someone recently. He was criticizing that Singapore has no freedom of speech. I just laughed. You can't blame him though, he's a newly converted citizen. Yes, the sort that want to spark an uprising and take down the government. So it can be exactly like his previous country's government. Which he left. Because it sucked. Hmmm, I wonder why. /sarc

Now, hold on a second. Why was I talking about books and now this? What is the link? Well, most of all the touchy and sensitive topics that I have been reading lately involved politics, which is economics. If you don't think economics = politics, you're living in some delusional fairytale world. Anyway, while I was mentally taking note which of my friends will have absolutely zero weight in future political discussions in my mind (friends are still friends for other reasons. I don't pick friends based on their political grasp), I saw a post by BFP about a book he just read.

The book is "Why Not Capitalism?" by Jason Brennan. It is pretty much a direct response to G. A. Cohen's book "Why Not Socialism?". So not only do you get a book that tells you why capitalism is good, it tackles and wrestles the socialism argument head-on! (spoiler: socialism loses) I am very excited to read this book to sharpen my arsenal of weapons to fire against socialism supporters.

So, there's the link. I want to read a book about a specific topic to educate myself because I see so many people with so many strong opinions putting down and spreading hate because of arguments about shit they probably don't know (I say probably, because I am only 90% certain they are wrong, because the idea is still not fully formed in my head yet). I want to be able to cut through the noise and figure out what they are saying is right, and what is wrong.

This is not a pursuit of self-validation that my current stance is right. I used to be a strong believer of Socialism before I realized my arguments were horrible. This is the pursuit of knowledge. If I am wrong, defeat my arguments and give me something better. I am more than glad to change allegiance. If I am right, so be it til the day I am proven wrong.

5 comments:

  1. Hello no money no honey (haha),

    Glad that you are reading so many books and have gained so much knowledges from them! I've started reading as well as i find these thing relevant an educational for me, most important is that i suddenly picked up my interest to find out more, by buying more books. Life is a never ending learning process!

    Cheers!
    jfree

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    Replies
    1. Hey jfree,

      Any good books you've read or good lessons you've learnt from them? I find that the hardest part is actually selecting an appropriate book! It feels like that there are just so many books out there and most of them just repeat the same few things over again.

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  2. Love the quote hahaha! All the best and take care!

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    Replies
    1. Hey TI,

      The screenshots from your recent post paints a good, realistic scenario of what happens on social media. It's no wonder why quite a number of financial bloggers rather share their thoughts behind a screen name and shy away from the popular social media. I also scared now, haha

      George Carlin is one of my favourite comedians, you should check out more of his work on Youtube if you're interested :)

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  3. Hi GMGH,

    I sure hope I haven't rubbed you the wrong way with some of my views on capitalism. =p

    Marcus Aurelius had a very dim view of the average human but he still devoted his entire life to improving their lot even though he could have just partied away.

    Anyway, on a more cheerful note, merry x'mas!

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