I’m writing this column on July 4th, the 239th anniversary of our independence from the King of England. What great patriots were those who, with little resources, fought for their freedom and independence from a tyrannical government. What great odds they overcame to secure their future and what great sacrifices they made for future generations of Americans.
We should all reflect on that great struggle and give thanks to the great patriots who have fought and sacrificed, and continue to fight and sacrifice today, to keep our country free. We should all be doing our part to keep our country strong.
So I want you all to write your own Declaration of Independence and to set a goal of being financially free from government control. Start off by writing down that by some age, say 62 or 66, you will have accumulated sufficient assets so that you are not dependent upon our great country to provide food, shelter and other basic necessities. That you will have the wherewithal to live your life the way you want, to fulfill your dreams of a life unencumbered by financial shortfalls. I’m not talking about Social Security and Medicare benefits. We paid for those over our working careers and we are due those benefits. I’m talking about income in excess of these pre-paid benefits. I’m talking about maintaining your lifestyle after you can no longer physically labor for your income.
Fellow patriots, let us all commit to saving at least 10% of our income, not including anything our employers might also contribute, into tax advantaged retirement accounts. Let us commit to investing a healthy dose of those savings into stocks. The stocks of the Great American Companies that, over time, provide the growth and income necessary to keep pace with the ever rising cost of living. Through the glorious sharing of profits and the wondrous mathematics of compounding we can create an income that can replace our labors and provide a continuing income stream to ensure our future lifestyle and to make a difference for our children and grandchildren.
Let us not forget to add a prudent dose of the stocks of the Great Companies of our Allies as well as bonds and cash to diversify our portfolios. And finally let us commit to ignoring the disaster of the day and to stay the course over time on our quest for financial independence. Let us know if we can help.