Angry Emails: Is Money The Root Of All Evil?

About once a week, I get an angry email from a reader who has stumbled upon The Simple Dollar and views it solely as a giant ode to materialism and capitalism. Usually, this reader has come in via a Google search and found an article where I discuss how to maximize the money one can make from an investment. They check the contact page, realize that they actually can contact me, and let loose their anti-capitalist rage in email form. Here’s a sample:

The biggest shame is all of the time and talent you have wasted just telling people how to make more money instead of doing something worthwhile. The world has enough greed in it without people like you teaching people how to be greedier. Why don’t you find something decent to do with your time instead of helping greedy people get rich?

What these messages all have in common is the general belief that money is evil and that people who believe that money is good (the initial conclusion that people often draw from The Simple Dollar) must inherently be evil themselves.

Here’s the real deal: money is neutral. It is neither good nor evil. Instead, money is a tool, like a hammer. You can use it to build something amazing or you can swing it wildly and break your thumb. Does that make the hammer good or evil? What about a garage full of tools – are they good or evil? The truth is that they’re neither good nor evil – it’s all about the intent of the person wielding the tool.

Let’s carry this metaphor forward: if money is a tool, then The Simple Dollar is all about how to use those tools safely and suggestions on how to use those tools to better yourself and better the world. The Simple Dollar is the equivalent of an episode of This Old House or Trading Spaces or Extreme Makeover: Home Edition where the people are learning how to use the tools as they go along and hopefully they’re building something that actually has meaning to them, like a Habitat For Humanity house or a room that someone they care for will love.

Money isn’t good or evil; people are good or evil. The entire purpose of The Simple Dollar is to teach people how to use their money more effectively (the mechanical articles about paying off debt and so on) and guide people to make good choices with their money (articles about introspection, personal development, and goals). To me, it’s a good goal, but I do also understand how people might use some of the information for negative purposes (investing ill-gotten gains, for example), but I know from talking to readers that the net gains for the world far exceed any net losses this information might cause.

In the end, The Simple Dollar is what the readers make out of it. Do they take away lessons that can bring about positive changes in their own lives and in the lives of others? I tend to believe that the average person tends towards wanting to do good things with their money, so by teaching people with good intentions some good techniques, as a whole The Simple Dollar makes the world a better place.

Maybe the next time I get an angry email, this is what I will respond with.

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  1. Rick says:

    In a perverse sort of way, that email letter does raise a good point. Capitalism is built upon greed, and it only works due to the collective desire of everyone to make money and get rich.

    However, if everyone was successful, nobody would actually get rich. Some bloggers talk about making money off of credit card arbitrage. But this only works because there are also the people who can’t manage their money and carry a $30K balance. If everyone could make millions from the stock market, everyone would jump in, and the demand for such stock would skyrocket, erasing the returns of buying the stock. If everyone jumped into a get-rich-quick scheme, the market would be flooded, and the scheme would fail to work.

    You are 100% correct in your points, of course. And many people confuse the Bible verse with what it actually says. I Timothy 6:10 — “For *the love* of money is the root of all evil.” I just wonder sometimes, if by teaching everyone to manage their money well, you (and other PF bloggers) are diminishing the returns for those who already do. I enjoy my 0% APR and $50 bonuses from banks, who may no longer be able to afford such perks if everyone managed their money well.

  2. vio says:

    What a wonderful article. I would like to add that people who think like your angry email-er do not realize the power of money to transform our society for the better. They do not understand that money can create businesses and thus improve society overall. When somebody creates something worthwile, it is not just one person that benefits–usually. For example, Bill Gates may have billions of dollars, but he has also created many many jobs that have improved life for everybody. Also, I think what would be truly evil would be for all of us to be financially irresponsible, throw our hands in the air, and when the time comes be a burden to society or to our children because we could never manage to provide for our own needs. Spending some time learning to articulate sound financial goals benefits the society at large, the way I see it. If I manage my own resources in a responsible manner and have enough to cover my needs, then I will be free to pursue volunteering when I retire (which I plan to do) instead of having to spend my time as a greeter at a store because I cannot afford my medicines. Thank you for a job well done Trent!

  3. sir jorge says:

    people take that out of context, and of course it is the LOVE of money that is the root; the love of it.

    and i was beaten to the first comment…rick!!! darn you!

    oh well.

    i liked this post.

  4. jake says:

    Everyone these days want to get their point across or their voice heard. probably some dude wanted to let off some steam and you happened to be the unlucky one he crossed.

  5. formul8 says:

    I Timothy 6:10 — “For *the love* of money is the root of all evil.”

    People confuse “love” with “lust”. The lust of money for money’s sake is evil. The greed of a person who cares only about themselves and their own worth and not anyone elses is the evil one. There are plenty of people with a lot of money that created a product or a sevice that helps people or does great things that deserves what they have earned. The person who get rich by screwing people like say, a Gordon Gekko type, get what they deserve in the end. Most of the people who spout this verse are either jealous or have such a fear of wealth and cannot see through the “money is a tool” theories.

    The Bible is not always correct, it contradicts itself in many areas and is often misunderstood by people who take it way too literally.

  6. NRB says:

    I would not even respond to such nonsense. Socialists that take the viewpoint of money=greed commit their fallacys by ignoring the fact that capitalism has raised the quality of life for EVERYONE..not just the rich.

    An example would be that people in our country who are considered ‘poor’…will still usually eat 3 good meals a day and enjoy cable television along with cell phones and whatnot. Fewer than .25% of our population are even homeless.

    I would also like to point out the 80/20 rule in this matter…where 20% of our population are producing at such a level that the other 80% are living easy, ‘soft’ lives. The fact that we dont have to hunt in the woods for food, chop down trees for heat, or walk miles to work everyday is due to the hard work of capitalists and entrepenuers.

    Capitalism has saved millions of lives by creating abundent supplies of food, medicine, and shelter to people who would not have access to such neccesities had they lived in some communist dreamland that our homegrown communists seem to wish for so much.

    The person who emailed you also begs the question…if he has enough time to send you such bile, does he not have enough time to perhaps work in a soup kitchen or building a home for Habitat For Humanity? How selfish of him to put his need of expelling textual diarhea ahead of serving his fellow man!

    God help us all!

  7. Surely this site is about greed. NOT! I’ve found the content of this site to be very helpful in promoting responsibility for people in all sorts of financial conditions. For the person who is drowning in debt this site is a life boat. Keep it up!

  8. Dan says:

    I think this site promotes less materialism, how many posts are here about how you don’t have to “keep up with the Jones'”, this site is about how to improve your life by not being a slave to the dollar. Money should work for you, you should not work for money. If securing my future is me being greedy then I wish there were a lot more greedy people in the world.

  9. Gavin says:

    This guy is obviously poor. =)

  10. Imelda says:

    That’s a good metaphor, although it rings a bit too close to “guns aren’t good or bad, people are” for me.

    What I think is more important is the fact that, whether you think capitalism is a good or bad system, it’s *here*, we live in it, and we have to deal with it. What you do, Trent, is teach us the best ways to keep it from hurting our lives. You help us get by in a difficult system, and that’s an admirable goal.

  11. Ryan says:

    Yeah, Trent, serves you right for actually accepting feedback on your site!

    I think most PF bloggers have this happen to them on a somewhat regular basis. There is a lot of disgusting greed and materialism in the world, and a lot of it is centered in the States. But what I’ve found about the information on this and other good PF sites is that the main point is using education and goal-setting as a way NOT to be greedy over money. Why? Because if you’re smart and responsible and frugal and reasonable, you can reach your goals without having to bite and claw and screw people over. And if you’ve really examined your life and your goals, they’ll probably go a little deeper than “I want to put away 500$ a month til I can afford my new gold grill”.

    How thinking about money and investing wisely and living simply became a tool for the capitalist machine is beyond me. If that emailer wants fodder for his anger, he just has to turn on the TV, but he shouldn’t spend his time on Trent.

  12. brent says:

    it’s almost as if they believe that when one person GETS money/value then some other person somewhere LOSES that amount of money or value.

    What a weird thing to think.

    No. Money is good. I love living in my house. I love that my kids have food to eat. I love that I have clothes. I love that I have a way to obtain goods and services that I can’t actually make myself, or directly barter for. What a fabulous thing it is.

    That person must [MUST] live in a tree.

    I think that Atlas Shrugged should be taught each year at high school.

  13. Minimum Wage says:

    Brent –

    What do you think the typical landlord-tentant transaction is? Zero-sum, one gain and one corresponding loss.

  14. Todd says:

    I agree and I’m glad someone pointed it out before me. It’s extremely annoying when people say “money is the root of all evil,” quoting the Bible verse. The Bible doesn’t say that MONEY itself is the root of all evil, it says the LOVE OF MONEY is the root of all evil. “Evil” is motivated by the want to gain… it doesn’t have to be MONEY that the person gains but greed is universal toward power, possessions, money, a harem, take your pick.

    If I thought your site was about greed, I wouldn’t subscribe and read as religiously as I do. You’re doing a wonderful service to the net-at-large.

  15. Amber Yount says:

    LOL that guy is obviously a loser. Don’t pay him any attention :)

    Am I evil, just because I don’t want to be in debt my whole life, and would like to live without worry about where I’m gonna get grocery money? I think not.

  16. smedley says:

    Is shelter & a place to rest ones head not a value for ones dollar?

  17. Daniel says:

    The “money as a tool” is good. I’ve always seen money as energy. Everything that needs to get done requires some form of energy. Transactions between people are the same. Even in societies that bartered goods and services, there was an exchange of energy in acquiring/producing that which was traded.

    In our day, money is the most ubiquitous (but not the only) form of energy used to transact. Energy can be used to create good change, bring about good services, or it can be wasted–effectively not getting an equal amount of energy returned.

  18. Minimum Wage says:

    If money is energy, how come I work twice as hard as a lot of my customers and earn half as much money?

  19. John says:

    Obviously, you aren’t letting it get you down Trent, as you know what the goals of this site are. To make everyone money hungry and to value it over all else is not part of that list. You offer suggestions that will help make people’s lives more enjoyable regardless of their income. “Getting monetarily rich” as a side effect of managing money wisely and making progressive choices in life is nice, but it is clearly not the main intent of the blog. I for one am glad I stumbled upon it as it led to my fiance and I becoming more open in terms of financial issues and we got to make a bucket of slime!

  20. keith says:

    Let this be the final word on this…please. This is probably the most misquoted verse in the Bible.

    The scripture is “The LOVE of money is the root of ALL KINDS of evil.” That is a HUUUUUUGE difference -ALL kinds as opposed to ALL. Amen? amen.

  21. Trent Hamm Trent says:

    Keith: I know and agree, but it doesn’t really help if there is a horde of millions out there using the incorrect quote with righteous indignation.

  22. Jake Smith says:

    Minimum wage – the reason why you not getting paid as much as you would like is to put it quite bluntly because there are thousands like you. In other words, you are earning what you are because your skill set is generic, i.e. not specialized. Might I suggest going to school to acquire new skills, even if this means taking a loan…

  23. Chris says:

    uggh, I hate how people have a strange association with money and sin. I want to have a decent amount of money because I think that in this country, the easiest ways to make things change for the better is by using money to do so. I’m not sure where all of this money=evil nonsense came from. It’s pretty absurd.

  24. mo says:

    The person who sent you that email has made a pretty ballsy assumption. Greed is not always, or even often, the motivation for wanting financial knowledge. I was referred to this website by two people who are not rich at all, but struggling to break even. Myself, I’m debt-free. No credit cards, no car payments, no mortgage. But I have a disabled child and I’m trying to put aside enough money to ensure that he is taken care of for the rest of his life. Seeking to become a better steward of your resources isn’t shameful — it’s the responsible, adult thing to do. When the person who emailed you grows up and begins to shoulder some adult responsibilities, maybe he or she will understand that.

  25. catherine says:

    If your correspondent read more of your posts before ranting, s/he’d know that you’re promoting responsible attitudes towards money, not rampant greed.
    But I’m curious, why’s s/he searching for investment advice if s/he’s so anti-capitalist? :)

  26. m360 says:

    It’s not just that the love of money is the root of all evil. The bible encourages us to build our riches in heaven. Not by magically sending money to some account in heaven but by doing good deeds. You know the passage that says “…I was hungry and you fed me, I was naked and you clothed me, thirsty and you gave me water…” I really think it’s greed that is the root of all evil. The hypercompetitive attitude that seems to be sweeping people away. I think being frugal, spending and saving wisely and not trying to cheat others on the way up the chain is the lesser of the evils. We all have to deal with money, there isn’t any way around it. And what about tithing? Do we apreciate what we have and give some of it back either to our church, charity, or someone less fortunate than ourselves? Or even our time. Is is all spent in the persuit of wealth or do we stop to hold a door for someone, vollunteer a few hrs a week, or help an elderly lady bring in her groceries? I try to give at least something back, even if it isn’t the whole 10%. If nothing else, it keeps the greed in check. It’s humbling to give up some of that hard earned money. The funny thing is, I don’t miss it and always end up with enough in the end. For instance, I was running low on cash and then an $18 check came in the mail from an H&R Block settlement. I had filled out the paper work the year befor and forgot about it. That check really helped me get by until I got paid. It would be interesting to hear the simple dollar’s opinion on this topic.

  27. Aaron says:

    If people are going to cite religion and money…why not talk about God and the requirement to be good steward of our (his) money?

    I believe this site helps me do that!

  28. John says:

    This site is probably more about not being a slave to money by having fewer materials and learning how to manage yourself. I’m glad you can address this “hate mail” so effectively and use it as a gain for your site. You should probably reply back to them and thank them for giving you an idea for a post. Keep up the good work.

  29. minimum wage says:

    smedley –

    Yes, shelter and a place to rest your head is a value for one’s dollar.

    Unfortunately, renters typically get far far less value for their housing dollar than do homeowners.

    Consider that renters have a higher median monthly housing cost than homeowners, even though renters get far far less housing on average than homeowners. (Think 600 sf apartment vs 2000 sf house plus land. Consider also various restrictions on renters (e.g. no pets) not suffered by homeownbers – renters get less utility for their housing dollar.) Homeowners get more (not to mention the equity and appreciation) is while paying less because in most cases they paid the prices of n years ago when they bought their homes, while renters always must pay current prices.

    Renting clearly is a value inferior to owning, and that is one reason why most renters would buy if they could.

  30. minimum wage says:

    Jake –

    I have no money (obviously) and cannot get financial aid, so I don’t see school as an option. Anyway, I’m a boomer and at my age, would a skill even be of any employability value?

  31. Tim says:

    money is EVIL, because I don’t have enough of it to spend on booze, women, and a dwarf.

    funny thing about capitalism, you need buyers and sellers. greed only works if people want something. ah, but forget about that. if it wasn’t for evil money, we wouldn’t have email to read about evil money.

  32. pfodyssey says:

    Silliness. Look forward to visiting your more aptly named site…”The Simple Evil-Doer”.

  33. S. B. says:

    Regarding the verse: As many have already pointed out, it reads “the LOVE of money…”. Additionally, nearly all scholars from different backgrounds agree that the original Greek is better translated as “the love of money is A root of [all kinds of] evil”. In other words, not only does the verse NOT claim that money itself is evil, but it also does NOT claim that the love of it is the root of all evil in the world, but rather that the love of money for itself is a root of many different kinds of evil.

  34. Ron says:

    We really should ignore these hypocrites. They have no problem using the latest technology to tell me how evil I am for using money to better my family’s existence. They preach a “zero sum” scheme but they do not actually live it; very much like many of the politicians passing laws in Washington.

    I applaud your article. It is on point and eloquently written. It was also, sadly, a waste of energy. You will never convince a thief it is not right to steal from others. At heart, that is all they really are. Just thieves.

    Minimum Wage: For God’s sake, man, give it up already. If you put half the energy in trying to better the lives of others you would be happier. (I’m not convinced you are flipping cheeseburgers for minimum wage so I’m assuming you are doing well. If not, sell your computer – you need to stop spending frivolously). I do not have a college degree. I started my career at sixteen making minimum wage. Through perseverance, I am now making a six figure salary. Stop whining and go to work.

    Ron

  35. Nick in Iraq says:

    Well stated, Trent. I would like to invite those people who think money is the root of all evil to give me theirs!

    In all seriousness, you can do tremendous things with money. For example, I donate to charities, support causes I believe in and help friends in need. Money facilitates all of that. Warren Buffett has donated literally billions to charity and still lives in a 4 bedroom house.

    My point is money is only as good or evil as the person who is spending it.

  36. Debo says:

    Like the saying goes…. “…Money does not change you… It brings out who you REALLY are!!.

  37. Kim Siever says:

    Money doesn’t kill people. People kill people.

  38. Eric says:

    @Minimum Wage,

    Why can’t you get education loans? Just curious, have you looked into the possibility or are you just assuming that you aren’t eligible?

  39. Brian says:

    What that angry emailer fails to realize is you can either be a slave to money and material objects or you can be a master of those things. You are merely advocating NOT being a slave whereby you have less stress and anxiety and more time to actually be with family or help volunteer.

    As far as doing good, people who are financially strapped are less likely to be in a position to help anyone else out financially.

    As you stated, money is only a tool and your website is more voice urging people to use that tool wisely.

    One last thing, managing money wisely not only wise, it IS BIBLICAL.

  40. EdTheRed says:

    Just send ‘em a “FrankenMail”, something along the lines of:

    Dear Reader,
    Thank you for your kind remarks about my money blog. As you can well imagine, I receive a lot of e-mail congratulating me on the astute financial advice I give. Although I can’t personally answer each and every one, I still want to thank you for your kind remarks.

    Best,
    Trent

  41. Ceridonna says:

    I want to thank you for your website. It’s chock full of practical help for those of us who want to improve our lives. Your values are shared by many people who appreciate a little financial direction.
    Thanks.

  42. liz says:

    Your reply to that email was right on…I agree that next time you should send that message to all who leave these kinds of comments.
    Money is not evil, it is the person behind the money that chooses to do good or bad things with the money…
    Keep up the good work…

  43. Lynn says:

    I don’t understand how people can believe that it’s better to sacrifice yourself to give things to others rather than produce, which makes the world better for everyone rather than “everyone but you”.

    What could possibly be more important than providing for yourself and your children?

  44. !wanda says:

    MinimumWage is close to being a troll, and it’s not a good idea to feed trolls. That said, he’s dropped some hints about his life (being hospitalized for mental problems, being a boomer, etc.) that really do limit his life trajectory, so it’s understandable that he’s angry. Why does he read this blog? If you go to any blog based on ideology, conservative or liberal, atheist or Christian, you’ll find that the writers and readers feel persecuted. They carefully gather evidence of their “persecution” and lay it out so that they can all indulge in an orgy of indignation and paranoia. There must be something satisfying about feeling persecuted and special that attracts people even as it bothers them. I’m pretty sure that by reading this blog, MinimumWage is stoking his rage and persecution complex.

  45. Just wondering if your ‘attackers’ leave a link to their website or blog. Can you post it here so that we can see what they write about? ;-) Or, if they will come again to read, they can drop a link! Thanks in advance!
    We can then read their thoughts, suggestions, ideas… at their blog instead of reading their attack on you.
    Because I am restraining myself, I will not call them “LOSERS”!

  46. hino2k says:

    I believe money is the root of all evil because if you look back into history, wars and fights and everything that causes harm was because of peoples greed for money; but that’s just my opinion.

  47. minimum wage says:

    Um, excuse me? Where did you get the incorrect idea that I was hospitalized for mental problems? I have never been hospitalized for mental problems, I was hospitalized for physical problems which went untreated and became critical because I had no insurance and no money.

    I don’t feel persecuted, I just made two enormous money mistakes. First, I blew the $4,000 (appeox $20,000 in today’s dollars) I had worked and saved up from the time I was ten on a liberal arts degree, which I believed I needed to go to law school. (I should have gotten a half-decent job out of high school or started a business and then invested the rest of my money.) My savings were insufficient and I took out student loans on top of the low-wage jobs I had. My second mistake was NOT going to law school because I thought I couldn’t afford to borrow the boatload of money it was going to cost. I had four rent increases in four years and defaulted on my student loans after the fourth rent increase, so I can’t borrow because I’m one of those evil student loan defaulters Reagan warned you about. (I am making partial payments now from my min wage income but can’t get the loans out of default unless I make larger payments.)

    I just wish there were a reasonable way out of this mess, and I have yet to see one. Persecuted, no…but I do think it’s a little unfair that a person can overspend extravagantly and then get a fresh start with BK while I never lived large and I’m stuck in a big financial hole. Oh, and I don’t literally flip cheeseburgers (although I have done that and been there) but I do earn my state minimum wage in a thankless retail job with a clientele with a large underclass component. There is no internal advancement available here and my bad credit (went in the tank when I was unable to work and lost my income, can’t fix on min wage income) pretty much precludes a lateral move with advancement potential.

  48. Brian says:

    hino2k—you seem to have forgotten lust(for sex/power/material objects) when blaming all of the world’s problems(past/present/future) on the greed for money.

    The evil that men do eminates from one’s heart and blaming money is like saying cars are bad because some people have used them to kill other people(intentionally or unintentionally).

    Osama Bin Laden is not motivated by money but by idealology that wants to convert the entire world into a Muslim world. He is pure evil and only uses his money as a tool to accomplish his goals.

  49. Tordr says:

    I would not say that money is evil, but I would say that money as it is currently structured is not optimal. Money is currently structured as debt, that is the more dept there is in the world the more money exists. There are other ways at structuring money, e.g. about 30 years ago money was based on gold. None of these two methods are optimal in my view, but this structure of money is only a conversation topic for lunatics and central bankers. But we are all using money each day and we should be concerned about how it is structured.

    The blog is about living fugal and getting out of debt, but the ironic thing is that if there where no dept today we would not have any money. Therefore there is no way of getting totally dept free for everyone.

    Another case is that inflation is going at 2% per year, but the amount of money is increasing by 8% each year (M3,M4), and most of that new money created is going to people with lots of money already. Therein lies the problem, the structures currently in place seem to favor distributing money in an non-equal way.

  50. John says:

    Truly, it is selfishness that is the root of all evil, not money. Selfishness leads to lusting after more of everything, not just money, and only for one’s self. It is selfishness that causes murder, gluttony, greed and all other evils.

    Trent, you are doing a great, unselfish, service by writing this blog. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

    Thank you!

  51. Tordr says:

    In my last comment I wrote: “…, but this structure of money is only a conversation topic for lunatics and central bankers.”

    It was not correct of me to use the word lunatics. I would rather say that the structure of money is only discussed by people on the fringe, people specially interested in things like that (e.g. me), philosophers and central banks. But it is something that should have been discussed by the general public because it concerns us all.

  52. MS says:

    The irony of your reader’s statement is that unless someone can manage their finances (which you do an excellent job of educating people on, BTW), then they can’t afford to be “above” money.
    If I don’t know how I’m going to pay the rent or put the next meal on the table, then money, or the lack of it, will take up most of my thoughts and effort. However, If I live on a budget and spend less than I make, then money’s not such a big deal, and I don’t have to obsess over it.

  53. Londres says:

    I once heard that money is not the root of all evil it’s the lack of it that is the root of all evil! :)

  54. Sharon says:

    Min Wage…
    I can sympathise with the defaulted student loans. And yes, if they are garnishing your wages, you work them out of default by paying extra…but above what the government thinks you can pay.
    Since I have just figured out my way out of my garnishment (although I make more than min wage.), let me make a couple of suggestions.
    One: Apply for a hardship deferment or decrease, if you haven’t already. When you apply, look at the allowances for food and misc, the categories you don’t provide concrete proof for. Put in an amount near or at the highest allowed. (With blackbelt frugality, you should be able to live under those allowances)
    Two: AS SOON AS you have a reduced amount taken out of your check, move to the cheapest housing you can find. Maybe even look for a “live-in” companion for the truly elderly. (Cause you may be a baby-boomer, but you ain’t really old yet) Move in with your parents. What ever it takes.
    Three: Use Blackbelt Frugality. Get a copy of Tightwad Gazette.
    Four: Get a second job which lets you eat there to reduce food expenses. Possibly on under the table.
    Five: Look into getting a new job (even at min wage) because if you read the fine print, they can’t garnish a new job for a year, I think.
    Four: Immediatly upon the reduced amount, START MAKING PAYMENTS IN THE REHAB PROGRAM TO GET OUT OF DEFAULT/GARNISHMENT. And save an equal amount so that when you have it to pay when you re-submit for hardship issues and they jack up your garnishment.
    If all goes well, then you should be out from under garnishment in a year. (earlyier if you can get a new job) Then you can look at more acceptable housing, or lowering your hours at the second job. So you will have to remember during this PAIN IN THE BUTT time is that it will ONLY BE FOR A YEAR.
    Also, I just learned this…even though the US government can garnish your wages forever, they can’t report it on your credit report after the specific number of years for your state. Your credit report may be better than you think. If you get a credit card it may help you get through some emergencies during this year.
    Also look gaining some short-term vocational skills, like para-legal which you have the aptitude for. It may be radical, but if you could get a credit card, I would even put it on that.
    Sharon

  55. Lisa Knight says:

    Not sure if it’s been said already, but my 2 cents… If money is so evil then why do churches & ministries beg for it??? It is what makes the world go round after all. Money is a tool & properly used can do great good! Great article!!!

  56. Thessalonika says:

    Trent, don’t worry about what some person who read your site for 2 seconds says. That’s typical of people who gloss over something and then come out strongly against it. It’s been said that those who know least are the loudest. I’ve been reading your stuff for a couple of months and it has caused me to move toward a more frugal lifestyle. Keep on keepin’ on, Trent. It really does make a difference. I thank you for your efforts and pray for a healthy and comfortable life for you and your family.

  57. Thessalonika says:

    Forgot to add: You DON’T have to defend yourself. If people don’t like it, don’t read it.

  58. Allison says:

    I’m surprised no one’s mentioned this verse, which I’m rather fond of quoting…

    “I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:24

  59. lyle bremer says:

    Please be frugal at reading what the true meaning
    of what the love of money is. it saddens me to be
    called fool because they judge me & don’t know me
    as one that is crippled. i still enjoy loving gods respect for me though i am a man with little. the love of money is the root of all evils!

  60. John says:

    Trent,
    We all need a enough money so we don’t have to worry about money. If we have a little extra we can spread it around like sunshine. Is this guy saying that we all should be pennyless and walk the streets? I do believe, however, that as we do well it is good for us to help others. Selfish- ness, greed, and being a miser is a poison to ourself. Trent, keep up the good work of helping people who didn’t learn how to use money wisely to do so. — we will all be a lot happier for it!

  61. Rachael says:

    Last week at my son’s Bday party all of the moms from my son’s school started to talk about our professions. When asked I said my husband and I own some jewellery stores. My lush of a aunt added, “yeah, they’re all in crack central.” This is true. Someone asked me how it felt to know that the money I get every day comes from evil people doing illegal things. ouch. But nothing I haven’t thought about before.
    Every day I get money from the drug peddlers and ladies of the evening. That money goes to support my family. Also about 15% of our net earning goes to charities, including crack central’s United Way funded daycare and preschool. Money leaves the hands of these people and comes to me where I can spend it wisely and patriotically (yes the 2nd most patriotic thing you can do in life is to help strengthen your country and not burden it!). If my store can’t be there then maybe the grocery store can’t either- maybe we should make sure that crime prone areas don’t have any businesses in which to spend their ill gotten gains. Keep in mind though that often police only enter these areas when they get a call from Apu at the gas station. We have a stabilizing affect here and prevent utter chaos.
    Is my logic faulty? Maybe.
    BTW I just found this blog last week. I love to read the thoughtful comments.

  62. dudelookslikeachimp says:

    Money is a catalyst for hidden evil lurking in people – though money itself has no fixed amount of evil per dollar.

    Without money, modern industry can provide everyone all the wealth one person can carry and guard at a given time.

    With money, one person can horde more wealth than could physically be carried or guarded as actual items. In fact the very rich often have more money than they could realistic spend in a lifetime. Bill Gates is good example.

    Yes, it is a given that certain rich people items could never be obtained or at least retained in a barter economy, things like 200 ft yahts and 50 room mansions. Only money can glue servants and guards to your side.

  63. Dustin says:

    Actually, it is the LOVE of money that makes people do horrible things. Money is a necessary part of all our lives.

  64. Money is not the root of all evil, greed is. This quote is taken out of context and many people are confused by what it means.

  65. tentaculistic says:

    “Renting clearly is a value inferior to owning, and that is one reason why most renters would buy if they could.” Ah, from the viewpoint of 2011, such blithe statements from 2007 are so antiquated it’s almost (almost) cute. This economy taught us what was wrong with that statement, in spades.

    #58 – just so you know, getting a camel through the eye of a needle is not actually as hard as you think (i.e. absolutely impossible), since the Eye of A Needle was a narrow gate with which Jesus’ audience were all very familiar. So the camel would have to be unloaded, only one could go at a time, and it might have to even crawl on its knees. Hard and inconvenient, absolutely. Impossible, not at all. Yet another Bible verse that has been quoted incorrectly time and again by people three milennia later trying to relate to ancient cultural references.

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