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So I am breaking a long silience I've held on writing new diaries and I am doing it largely because there is finally something I think that needs to be said.

And what pray tell is that? That the value of patience and the ability to hold to the long term has been mostly lost on this site.

Now frankly that I am the one writing this is darkly ironic to me and to any one that knows me. I am not by virtue a patience person. I want what I want and I want it not just today but yesterday. It's I suppose part of my nature, I am hot tempered (I prefer passionate) and patience was never one of my virtues but I try.

I try because patience is one of those quiet things that I think people pay lip service to but tend not to realize it's importance.

And as an illustration here's a question to everyone, if I offered you 2 million dollars right this minute or 1 penny doubled every day for a month (for disclosure call it 30 days) which one would you take?

Now I realize that given the nature of the diary the answer probably seems 'obvious' but just how obvious is it?

Think about it and then scroll down

Day 1: $.01
Day 2: $.02
Day 3: $.04
Day 4: $.08
Day 5: $.16
Day 6: $.32
Day 7: $.64
Day 8: $1.28
Day 9: $2.56
Day 10: $5.12
Day 11: $10.24
Day 12: $20.48
Day 13: $40.96
Day 14: $81.92
Day 15: $163.84
Day 16: $327.68
Day 17: $655.36
Day 18: $1,310.72
Day 19: $2,621.44
Day 20: $5,242.88
Day 21: $10,485.76
Day 22: $20,971.52
Day 23: $41,943.04
Day 24: $83,886.08
Day 25: $167,772.16
Day 26: $335,544.32
Day 27: $671,088.64
Day 28: $1,342,177.28
Day 29: $2,684,354.56
Day 30: $5,368,709.12

That's right if you show just a little self restraint and patience you would earn double the up front offer.

Now I am sure people will protest that no one in their right mind will ever really offer such a thing but that ignores the point I am trying to make and that point is the value of patience and the long view.

Still don't believe me? Well let's go look at the history of some of our greatest victories.

Let's take Social Security which as a reminder was passed in 1935:

There have been several important amendments to the original 1935 Social Security Act. In 1939, Social Security was modified to add benefits to the spouse or minor children of a retired worker. It also added a survivor’s benefit, paid to the family in the event of the premature death of a covered worker. Thus, with the 1939 amendment, the idea of economic security became a family-based program rather than an individual-based one, and one that provided benefits for retirement, disability, premature death, and medical costs after retirement. The payment of monthly benefits was accelerated to begin in 1940 rather than 1942. Interestingly, the first monthly retirement check was issued to an individual who had paid a total of $22.54 into the system and received $22,000 in benefits over her lifetime!

The next significant change to the SSA occurred in 1950, when the first cost of living adjustment (COLA) was added the program. This was a one-time increase in benefits of 7.7%; the next COLA occurred in 1952, a 12.5% increase. In 1954, a stipulation was added that would freeze a worker’s record during the years he was disabled and unable to work. This amendment avoided a worker’s receiving reduced or no benefits in the event of a disability.

In 1961, the retirement age for men was reduced to 62, with a reduced monthly benefit for those choosing to retire early. Several major changes to Social Security occurred with the 1972 amendment: automatic COLAs were instituted, a minimum monthly benefit was established, monthly benefits were significantly increased to those individuals waiting until age 65 to retire, and a system for automatic increases in the amount of earnings subject to Social Security taxation was developed.


Emphasis added by me.

Or maybe we should examine the Clean Air and Water Act? That started off as a study in the 50s

And even when has been amended multiple times.

I could go on but I do no want to belabor the point

Originally posted to drache on Sat Jul 03, 2010 at 01:42 PM PDT.

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