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October 13, 2009


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I think one of the main lessons to draw from that (if we haven't already) is that there is no such thing as job security. At least, when it comes to planning our personal finances, we shouldn't assume that our jobs are secure.

I think that's probably the reason why they did what they did, because if the job is as secure, then... they could manage to "afford it".

I am wondering why they would choose to upgrade their lifestyle just based on the fact the company was closing one office. If my employer closed one office and I had to move I would stay the same or downgrade. Closing one office means things are not going well...opening a new office might have lead him to believe that he could upgrade. Sad situation...but then a lot of poor decisions were made as well.

I wonder if the "upgraded lifestyle" was necessary for your friend to get his wife/family to agree to the move. It's also possible that his salary after the move was promised to be higher.

It's a bit hard to judge when you most likely don't know all the details of the situation and when you also have the benefit of hindsight.

However, their intransigence on pricing their house seems like a legitimate thing to criticize.

"It's brutal all the way around."

Well put FMF.

The brutal circumstances exposed the brutal choices.

I wish it were the case that we could point to this example and say this is the rare case of someone making poor financial choices. Unfortunately most people make similarily poor financial choices. But you never see most of it because even with 10% unemployment, 90% still have their jobs and thus their poor choices continue to be masked.

I also wish it was the case that having to convince a family to make a necessary move or some other reason justified making poor financial choices to "buy them off". But it doesn't. There is no excuse for having had to relocate due to job instability, and as a result now owning two houses one of which is not selling and the price continuing to fall and in response you buy a bigger house than ever that needs a lot of work that you admit is a financial stretch and then pile on lots of expensive toys. There is no possible real world situation that could ever justify that. The whole thing is just a childish lack of discipline, prudence, common sense, and acceptance of reality. Children are allowed to live in these kinds of fantasy worlds. Adults are not supposed to but unfortunately way too many do.

"It's not until the tide goes out that you discover who is swimming naked." - Warren Buffet.

Here is a tip Warren: hold on to your swim trunks, because most of the people in the pool aren't wearing any.

I feel like in the current environment there is a much slimmer margin of error. Apex is right, stuff that was masked before, is laid bare.

In my mind, I am convinced that "upgrading" is a trap (frequently).

I also agree with Eugene Krabs that the concept of a permanent job is an illusion. Honestly, we are all employees "at will". We are all contractors/consultants. This is something that I've grown to understand this environment when I am a contract employee in a top organization.

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