chip sanft wrote:
I think the discussion here is more about how the purpose of Permies, as defined by its creator and owner Paul Wheaton, isn't the place to tell people they're wrong. There are sites like that out there, if that's what your looking for. Here it's more about a supportive environment for gentle souls who may have ideas that the general public holds to be wrong or not quite right or just goofy. I think it promotes a healthy attitude about internet discussion in general, too, but that's just me.
Maureen Atsali wrote:I stumbled on this thread by accident... and as it is a bit contentious, I'm not sure I want to touch it. But here we go. I am an American, born to a lower-middle class family. Started working at age 14, always held 2 or more jobs up to age 30. Still couldn't get ahead. In 2011, I quit my job, packed up my kids, and left the USA. I landed in Africa. No, I didn't escape the need for money - but I sure don't need as much of it. I don't heat my house, I don't own a car, I am not connected to the grid. I grow/raise 80% of my foodstuff, I have no monthly bills. The government still gets their hands in my pocket any time I buy from the market or a supermarket, or use public transport. (VAT is 16%) But in our remote village, we still barter a lot. We recently made a deal with a neighbor to do the labor of putting sweet potato lines between our trees. We provide the land, they provide the labor, we split the harvest. No money changed hands. I love that, and we make those kinds of deals a lot. Banks here are pretty crooked and unstable, so I don't keep my money in the bank. Instead we have, as my husband says, "four-legged bank accounts," and "feathered bank accounts." We put our money into animals which have a ready market, namely goats and chickens. First, they pay us "interest" in eggs and offspring. Second, they are very "liquid" in that if we have a financial need, we can usually unload one or more in less than 24 hours. I miss my family and friends in the USA, but I love the life we've created here. I work hard on the farm, as hard as my body will allow, but I'm still able to be present for my kids, and have time to work on my art and writing. I have a LOT less stress. Life moves at a much slower pace. We make about $400 USD a month, from farm income and some related off farm income. Unfortunately we aren't able to save much of that yet, but still, we live a pretty comfortable life, and I wouldn't go back to the USA for anything.