ALS Topic 5 - $1m now, or $1,000 a week for the rest of your life - both tax free?

Focus questions for Adelaide Lunchtime Seminar, 16 April 2018 ( )

The idea for this topic comes from The Guardian, about the choice of a young Canadian woman who won a national lottery: "Would you take £1m now, or £1,000 a week for the rest of your life?" @ . It is worth reading the comments to see how people divide on the issue.

Note: The questions below are not supposed to suggest biased answers. You really can adopt any point of view your can suggest evidence for. Do be prepared for others suggesting counter-evidence! Note: clearly not all of these questions can be properly covered in a meetup, but they give us a conscious choice about what to talk about while making the background context clearer. It is up to the people who come on the day to choose what aspects they would like to deal with.

Focus Questions:

1. Your choice: So what is your choice with $1m and what are your reasons?

2. Other people: Think of three different personality types, and how different choices might be suitable for each.

3. A modest budget choice: If your net worth was about AUD$500,000 (with no property) - not so unusual in Australia -, would you buy a house, invest it (in what?), or just live it up for a few years? Why?

4. Budget types: How do personal budgets differ from national budgets? [They do, though you would never know it from the news media or politicians]

5. So money does grow on trees: After the Great Financial Crash in 2008 the United States government simply printed money, and with a little trickery gave it more or less free to the banks to forestall their bankruptcy. They called this process 'quantitative easing' (or in private, 'helicopter money'). Can any government do this? Why/why not?

6. Debt: What is the difference between 'good debt' and 'bad debt' ?

7. Redistributing wealth: What is a fair system of tax?

8. Money for everyone: There has been an increasing discussion about a Universal Basic Income (UBI) in many parts of the world. The basic idea is that everyone should get a minimum income from the government, whether they are working or not, and would so be freed from the risk of poverty. Both conservatives and progressives favour it. On the other hand a number of conservatives and progressives also oppose it. [some reading references are in the comments below]. Do you think this idea is practical and desirable? Why/why not?

9. Work: Why do people work? Company managers like to say that companies exist to make a profit. They often assume that the same is true for why people work. Is this true for people? Is it even true for companies?

10. Sacrifice: What are you prepared to sacrifice to achieve real financial independence, and what will you not give up?

Comments & Links

Thor's own websites:

1. articles at ;

2. legacy site: .


$1 million now or $1000 a week for the rest of your life, both tax free? (c) Thor May 2018 return to Ddiscussion