095R Call to Action

095R | Call To Action

Brad and Jonathan get an update about the “Playing with FIRE” documentary, they recap FinCon 2018, and review feedback from the community about Monday’s episode with the Military Dollar.

  • Brad and Jonathan just returned from FinCon in Orlando, Fl.
  • The meet up during FinCon was a huge success.
  • ChooseFI won the “Best Personal Finance/Retire Early Blog or Podcast” at the conference.
  • Potentially as much as 20% of ChooseFI’s community are service members.
  • Avoiding a deprivation mindset and instead focusing on how great life will be when you open up your options through Fi.
  • Email from David: Military Dollar did an excellent job explaining the complexities of military benefits in an accessible way.
  • Feedback from Rick: Excited about the resources that are currently available to members of the military, as they are new compared to what resources were available previously.
  • The Blended Retirement option is dramatically improving the retirement benefits for the huge percentage of service members who don’t make it to full military retirement.
  • Army Doc points out an extra advantage of using the Post 9/11 GI Bill for dependents: applying and being admitted to a school ‘early decision’ is a binding acceptance which can cause some people to worry about finances, particularly for private universities.
    • The GI Bill, combined with solid advanced research about each universities’ participation in the Yellow Ribbon Program, can give your child the leg-up to getting into a university.
  • Voicemail from Chris explaining the difference between being enlisted reserve v. officer.
  • How have healthcare benefits have allowed Chris to pursue a small business and save money on health expenses?
  • Travel through the marines has opened Chris’ worldview and helped him building international relationships.
  • Stephen, talks about potential benefits of the Servicemen Civil Relief Act, which can provide some assistance with credit card, phone services, etc.
  • The window to opt into the blended retirement system closes in December.
  • Update from Scott, the creator of documentary “Playing with FIRE”
    • How has the documentary project impacted Scott’s life?
    • What impact has the crew had on Scott, and how has FI impacted the crew?
    • What’s so compelling about the interviews from the documentary?
    • What has been challenging so far?
  • Call to Action from Brad & Jonathan: help get the documentary distributed and support the message.

Listen to the full episode with Military Dollar here. 


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5 thoughts on “095R | Call To Action”

  1. Although it was very briefly touched on by Jonathan, there are a lot of downfalls in joining the military, and I think young people should understand this before signing their name on the dotted line. When you join the military, you can be sent off to a war zone where your choice is to kill or be killed. If you make it back alive and without any limbs blown off, then many face PTSD or some variation from the horrors of war. The suicide rate is very high (much higher than combat deaths), and there are also many broken families.

    We often hear that getting to FI is about gaining choices and freedom. When you join the military, you are enslaving yourself to the government. You may end up well off financially, but at what expense? Will you be shipped off for 9 months so that you don’t get to spend Christmas with your family, or you don’t get to be there for the birth of your child?

    I know this will be unpopular with many people, but there is another side of the story that needs to be heard.

    • Geoff,

      Your comments are why I always stress that the financial benefits are a BONUS of military service. First and foremost, one should feel a call to serve their country in this way. I don’t think anybody should stay in the military due to the monetary aspects, and only a few should originally join for them (if they are coming from a disadvantaged position and the military can serve as a way to bring them out of trouble, get on a good financial standing, and/or provide education and training). There is no “correct” compensation for missing holidays, the birth of children, or losing limbs or life. Service should be about more than money.

      The only thing I would change about your comment is the statement that being in a war zone leads to kill or be killed choices. Many people serve in war zones in roles where they don’t have to make that decision. Thankfully, I am one of them. But everybody does have to be prepared for that decision, should the situation change.

      Thanks for commenting!

      Military Dollar

  2. Brad and Jonathan,

    Great roundup! I really appreciate the people who called in and wrote to provide more info. How about Chris – way to blend military service with entrepreneurship! I’m also pretty excited to go down in history as being in the same roundup as the call to action for Playing with FIRE! I can’t wait for this movie to come out and I’m spreading the word to all of my friends. Maybe I’ll make my squadron watch as a group, hahaha.

    Thanks again!

    Military Dollar

  3. Loved hearing from Scott with the playing with Fire update. I’ve signed up for one of the rewards and pleased to think that I’ve played my own small part towards getting the message out there.

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