You Can Neither Make Money Back nor Time

There is a very peculiar claim that is very popular among apparently all hucksters and grifters, namely the claim that you should not be too careful about spending your money because you can “always make money back”. In contrast, you need to be protective of your time because it is simply limited. This statement may even sound superficially plausible, but it is not. I think this is one of the most deceptive phrases out there, which arguably explains its popularity.

You probably do not question that you cannot “make time back”, strictly speaking. One day you will die, and even if you had access to those adrenochrome dens the elites frequent, you would not be able to keep death at bay indefinitely. No, somehow backing up the content of your brain to the “cloud” does not change this. You can probably make the argument that if you refuse cancer treatment, Steve Jobs-style, you lose time but would “make it back” if you changed your mind, similar to someone wanting to get vaxxed to the hilt but leaving the vaxx station in a hurry when seeing someone collapse right after having gotten the mRNA jab. In some timelines, the lives of those people are longer, and in others, they are shorter. Yet, there is a hard limit to the time they have.

Unlike time, money seems to have no upper limit, due to central banks just creating it out of thin air. Nominally, there is always more money in circulation that is worth less and less. Yet, it is still not correct to claim that you can “make money back”. Naively, you can take the example of someone getting swindled out of $5k by an online guru. This guy can make the money back by making another $5k. Sure, it will take time, but he will get there. Oh, wait, I think we just tripped over something here: time normally converts into money so by getting swindled out some money, people actually steal time from you. Yet, as your time is limited, you will never be able to catch up.

Let me explain this a bit more formally. Assume you have a lump sum of $10k and you buy stocks from ACME Inc. for it. This company pays out a dividend of 5% every year, like clockwork. Thus, year after year, your money grows. If said investor only has $5k available, on the other hand, he will never catch up with his counterpart in a parallel universe who could invest all $10k at once. Thus, you can quite nicely show that the less well-off investor will never catch up with the other one, ceteris paribus.

A while ago I had a chat with a startup founder. They had a rough year and made some dumb decisions that cost them a lot of money. I asked some pointed questions about it, and he just shrugged it off, claiming that the company may have lost $x last year, but they can always just “make it up” this or next year. He did not like me pointing out that his baseline has been lowered and that, compared to not making those decisions, he will now perennially play catch-up. I wonder if he was so seemingly confident when making those statements because he has practiced them so much when talking to impressionable women who get wet when they hear “startup founder”. More precisely, he should tell them that all he has achieved is wasting the money of his investors. This made me wonder if today’s startup founders are the equivalent of yesterday’s telemarketers or online marketing hucksters. In any case, they will never make their money back, and neither will anybody else.

11 thoughts on “You Can Neither Make Money Back nor Time

  1. One thing that these founders tout is “sweat equity” as if when you write free code for them you are accumulating “good karma.” The relationship between an employee and employer is like a prostitute and their customer. The prostitute is trying to get you off quickly an doesn’t want to kiss your stinky lips. These start up founders was you to kiss them on the lips and tell you how “good it was” after they gave you anal with no loob.

    But of course that scumbag Joe biden bailed out the investors at SVB. That includes the biggest scumbag of them all, Gavin Newsome!

  2. On a side note, I wonder what shyster Matt Forney would say if you said “A moment on the lips a lifetime on the hips” as he guzzled down soda pop and fast food!

  3. There is a practical aspect to this. Whilst technically they might be lying to themselves about “making the money back”, in practical terms it helps stick through the downs and keep going.

    Generally the main difference between people who make it in business and those who don’t is that the former stuck to it. Whilst people who quit generally use a bad period as “proof” the business will never work out. But businesses never work that way. It’s never a series of successes. It’s almost always a series of almost-catastrophic failures in the first years, before it takes off.

    I think it’s similar to that research where they found that pessimists are actually objectively more correct about reality, yet optimists are more successful. In other words, optimism (lying to yourself) leads to success more often than pessimism, despite more often being based on a lie.

  4. Aaron,
    1. What are some life experiences men should experience before they get to old since time is so limited? Why would those experiences be more important that others?

    2. I don’t want to be intrusive, but have you experienced what you needed or do you feel on some level that you’re trying to make up for lost time? I’ll email you about booking a consultation because this is one topic I would like to discuss, making up for loss time. No matter how much money I make, I can never get that time back.

    1. 1) I do not think that time is that limited. You have a lot of time at your disposal. It’s just that you won’t live forever. What you want to experience is entirely up to you. I would suggest at least a bit of travel and some philandering. I also strongly recommend, in particular for guys with a solid middle-class background or above, to put themselves in a situation where they need to be economical with their spending.

      2) I think I have experienced a lot, and I certainly have seen enough of this world and of people. There was a phase in my life where I thought I had to make up for lost time, and I probably went a bit overboard. Anyway, my bucket list is empty. There are still a few goals I have, which I would like to reach, like growing vegetables and perhaps having a chicken coop, but the much more important step for me was to leave the big city behind so that I can enjoy a life of relative tranquility.

    2. Aaron,
      Have you traveled all over Europe, or do you feel that traveling all over Europe is over rated? I haven’t been to Europe, and I plan on doing so pretty soon. There’s so much to see out there that I have no idea where to start. Germany and France are on my bucket list.

      Has Germany become very Islamic over the last few years?

    3. Chris,

      I have not traveled all over Europe, and I don’t think that it is overrated. There are some absolutely beautiful sights, great nature, wonderful architecture, and fabulous works of art. At this point, though, I think that traveling is no longer all that appealing to me.

      Your question regarding the islamization of Germany is interesting. Muslims are a much smaller part of the population here than you might think. However, they are very visible, similarly to particular minorities in the US. Thus, people tend to greatly overestimate how many muslims there are in Germany. In Berlin, you could be forgiven for believing that there are 40% muslims, when the official numbers are about 9%. This is still a pretty high number. You wonder what will happen in case they become the majority.

    4. Aaron,
      I’ve come across stories that Europeans are concerned about Muslims because they feel they pose a threat and one day they will take over all over Europe just like the Ottoman Empire did, and Spain was one part they took over for quite a while. If Muslims do become the majority in the future, everything your ancestors built will one day be destroyed and gone. I remember growing up in the 80s in Southern Cali and it used to be very American (white). Now, it’s become a shit hole like Mexico is in the past 20 years.

    5. I certainly see the problem of demography, and saying that the situation is not as bad as it may look does not really help. In fact, the shifting demographics of big cities was one of the main motivations for moving to the countryside and even here I get exposed to a surprising amount of diversity.

    6. One problem I see with immigrants who have kids who are born in America is that they have more “loyalty” to their own native country than they do for America.

    7. This is indeed a big issue. As a consequence, you easily end up in a situation in which those immigrants engage in ethnic voting, and before you know it, they try to recreate the failed political system they are used to from the country they supposedly fled from.

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