HomePollsThursday Poll: The crap hits the fan.

Thursday Poll: The crap hits the fan.

In light of all the government shutdown and furlough talk, I’d thought we’d see just how well PDITF readers are prepared for economic disasters, disturbances to income, and maybe even that zombie apocalypse I’ve heard so much about.

zombie apocalypse

On with the show…

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  1. I don’t keep more than a few months in liquid cash, but my Roth IRA gives me about nine additional months that I can tap tax-free. Besides, once you past age 59.5, any withdrawals from a tax-deferred IRA are the same as if you were retired.

    I do think this country is losing its pre-eminent position among world nations, and fast. No superpower has remained a superpower indefinitely, and that has gone for the ancient Romans, Spain, the British Empire, and more. We are making every mistake possible — whether it’s waging unnecessary wars, stagnant wage growth for the middle class, obsession with reducing the national debt rather than investing in jobs and growth, failing to provide for the poor — and we cannot recover from these costly errors by waving the flag and screaming “We’re Number One!” But since I just turned 65, I won’t be around to see the results; you that are younger most surely will.

  2. The biggest thing that speaks for the US to go down is the birth rate. It is proven that now “superpower” has ever survived with an average of 2 children per couple or less. The Islamic world is somewhere around 7 or 8 per couple, so they will automatically take over the world.

    I am sure someone may find scientifically proven numbers to this.

    Maybe Ninja can post about number of children as I find that especially in the frugal community people are more “self centered” and have less children. (That is just a gut feeling though, although MrMoneyMustache states it out loud).

    • I think this is very interesting. I decided against having children in my teens. The stress of having and caring for children isn’t something for everyone, that is one consideration. When you consider the financial portion of the equation though you notice that it’s extremely difficult to do in today’s economy. Many people struggle with basic necessities without even having to consider children. Look at those graduating today and being unable to find decent employment. It’s worth thinking about whether you would attribute the United States losing its superpower status due to people not wanting to reproduce, or not being financially capable of doing so. If it’s the latter then either businesses or the government need to look into the issue.

  3. Right now I have over 2 years of liquid cash, which is way more than I would like (for me 6 months is ideal). I just sold my house and rented an apartment in our cool downtown area, trying to decide if this is somewhere I’d like to live permanently/buy a house, which is why I’m keeping that money liquid. Don’t want to risk losing it in these crazy times.

    I do agree with those that think our years as a Superpower are numbered. History proves that nothing lasts forever. But that doesn’t make me think we won’t be generally ok. At least I hope that’s the case. Optimism!

  4. I don’t like the answers under “if you run out of liquid funds” because I would do none of those things. I am clawing my way out of debt and there is no way in HELL I would ever dig my way back into it via credit card or any type of loan. My answer would be “GET A SECOND JOB.” Borrowing money from others is just a disaster waiting to happen.

    • I love this response, and completely agree with you. If a job was out of the question (as if McDonald’s is never not hiring), then I would start selling my belongings via yard sales/ebay/consignment and get down to a bare bones budget. So many people I’ve met complain about barely scraping by or racking up debt while they clutch their blinged-out iPhones with their weekly manicured nails and it makes me cringe.

  5. @Allie and @Monica, re-claiming from your retirement savings is not equal to going into debt.

    Overall I agree that a second job or “bridge job” is a way better solution than doing any of the options though, you are right.

  6. Still paying down debt, $80K in last 40 month so our emergency fund is small at the moment. That will be increase once we are done with our snowball. I’d work as many jobs as possible to stay on track, someone has to sweep up all the body parts during the zombie apocalypse.

  7. I have less than one month of cash available but I have some stocks that are not in a retirement account that I could sell with no tax penalty. That would get me through 3 months.

    If it was a personal disaster and not something apocalyptic I would be able to apply for disability or unemployment. I am Canadian so my health care is covered.

  8. I have about a month worth of cash available to me but my real emergency fund is a tax-free mutual fund. It also only has about a month in it current because I recently tapped into it but I usually keep it at about 3 months… once I’m out of debt I will be maximizing my contributions to my TFSA but who knows when that’ll be (3 years and 7.3 months but no one is counting)…

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