Friday, April 23, 2010

Slavery on Four Wheels

Admittedly, I am not a car person.  While I do have a dream car, a modest Jeep wrangler ;), I view cars as merely transportation from one place to another that can be done relatively inexpensively.  I realize that this view differs quite a bit from America's love of cars and the freedom they offer.  But when did that freedom turn into slavery?  This morning I saw an add for a Land Rover LR5.  The add said that they start at around $699.00 per month for 60 months.  For the median income in the US, that equates to being 25 cents of ever dollar going toward a car payment.  I realize that the Land Rover LR5 may be considered a luxury car, but have you ever looked at an apartment complex parking lot and seen how out of whack housing cost to transportation costs are.  You need only listen to Dave Ramsey for one day to realize that so much of what causes financial slavery is the 4 wheeled beauty sitting in one's driveway.  And you also know that Dave's advice is to sell the car and get a "beater".  Unfortunately, this lesson comes to late in these people's lives.  How many youths get sucked into the slavery of a car loan right out of high school.  Because it is such a part of culture, like the 30 year mortgage, people just think that a car payment is something you will do your entire life. Think of how much money you would have for retirement, or a house, or other things if you didn't spend 25% or more of your take home pay on transportation costs.  Imagine the prospective Land Rover buy investing $700 a month or paying off the principle on their home.  These payments are the slavery we sell ourselves into, but it is also the slavery we can avoid and break out of.

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