An intriguing combination of economics, philosophy, history, and advice aimed at readers who wish to plan for a meaningful retirement.
To debut author Wright, a financial planner and retiree, retirement offers the chance to recapture the youthful idealism lost to years of work, responsibility, and keeping up with the Joneses—an opportunity to instead enjoy pursuing the pleasures of the mind and continuing the kind of intellectual education most of us left off after college or high school. To this end, he concentrates the first section of the book on how to financially prepare for such a retirement. His plan to save enough money to retire early, or at least have enough by age 65, involves, in part, excelling in your career (hopefully one that you like) while at the same time eschewing status-seeking conspicuous consumption. In other words, forget about the Joneses. He suggests some investing but only if you are satisfied with a fair return over time. If “you become greedy, you will be burned.” Business out of the way, Wright launches into his passion: philosophy. Plato, Mill, Thoreau, Sartre, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Freud; Wright covers them all logically and lucidly. With lively, down-to-earth prose, he manages to present understandable thumbnail sketches of each philosopher’s worldview, from the ancient Greeks to the present day, all while demystifying complex ontological and epistemological concepts and bringing to life the personalities behind them. Wright exudes an infectious enthusiasm and offers something of a life preserver to those so jaded by their work lives they “cannot conceive of any meaningful alternative to work, other than death.”
A must for future and current retirees; an entertaining excursion through the world of philosophy for everyone else.