Good topic. Especially as societal mores may remain in place way longer than necessary. Time to shift thinking for sure.
by Eric Peters
Chris asks: Since my job at a call center was eliminated “because Corona” at the end of March, I’m looking an income opportunity that doesn’t involve going back to “corporate America.”
As you’ve mentioned before, it seems like more and more jobs will be funneled toward the large companies, where we’ll be subject to the “corporate rules” (drug testing, political correctness, etc.) plus I see restrictions being ramped up even more (Masks Mandatory, proof of “up-to-date” vaccines being required to even be considered for jobs, all sorts of petty “social distancing” rules, and so on. During my last job, I received a lecture from a manager about not addressing people as “sir” or “ma’am” after a caller complained to management that I called them by the “wrong gender” — don’t want to go back to that nonsense if I can at all help it!
From your experience, what do you (and perhaps your readers also) see as industries that will be good income sources in a “Corona world”? Are driving-based gigs (such as Uber, UberEats, delivery drivers, etc.) a promising field, and worth the time? I am 50 and not looking to “climb the corporate ladder” but not quite able to retire either. Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated.
My reply: Any gig that makes you independent of corporate America or at least, less dependent on it, is the ticket. And the corollary of this is to live as much below your means as possible. The less money you have to earn, the more free you are.
In re the first, jot down a list of the things you are good at and know more than the average bear about. Then think about ways to leverage your skills/knowledge into work people are willing to pay you for. It may be handyman plumbing/electrical/mechanical work; it might be teaching (not in government schools – seek out homeschoolers). Anything that earns a sufficiency of honest dollars without having to become a drone in a cube farm, bending knee (and extending arm, for vaccinations) to the man.
In re the second: To the extent you can, scale down and divest yourself of money-hogging liabilities such as a car payment. If you haven’t got a paid-for car, get one. Even if it’s an old one. Find a good one – and then take good care of it and it will take good care of you. By not costing you a regular monthly payment and by costing you very little, comparatively, to insure and so on.
Most of all, try to reduce your housing costs. The most saving thing you can do – the most liberating thing there is in this country, at this moment – is the paid-for home. Yes, you’ll still have to deal with property taxes and upkeep. But if you haven’t got a mortgage – and don’t have to pay rent – you all of a sudden need 50-plus percent less income than the average American to live a reasonably comfortable middle-class existence.
Another option, which amounts to the same thing, is to buy and live in an RV. This is even more doable financially for most people and it’s not a miserable existence. Many RVs are nicer than a small house and have the advantage of being mobile – so you can easily flee the golden horde and follow the work, too.
The main thing is to get away from the McCube and McCorporation ASAP given what they have in store for anyone unfortunate enough to be working there.