Book Read - "Die Broke"

Die Broke - A Radical Four-Part Financial Plan written by Stephan Pollan and Mark Levine

Created: by Pradeep Gowda Updated: Oct 09, 2023 Tagged: book · bookreview

Die Broke A Radical, Four-Part Financial Plan by Stephen M. Pollan and Mark Levine after discovering it on this blog

The four maxims of this book are:

  1. Quit today
  2. Pay cash
  3. Don’t retire
  4. Die broke

Even though this book was written in 1997, the advice sounds very relevant to current times, 25 years later. If anything, we have another 25 years of observations to confirm some of the maxims set out by the authors.

Many of the above advice have become quite familiar to anyone following many solopreneur, FIRE, and other trends of the last 10 years. The proponents of FIRE etc tend to lose perspective of why they made those choices and hyperoptimize at the cost of everything fun, enjoyable and purposeful in life.

The last two advices are still radical – Don’t retire and Die Broke, each drastically more radical than the previous.

The Don’t retire advice needs to understood in the context of why retirement was put in place. Retirement was not always the norm.

The most important advice of this book is Die Broke – this goes against pretty much every instinct people have developed over centuries. My takeaway after reading the first couple of chapters is – Money is valuable when it is spent, don’t hoard it. Assets are what you want, if you are looking to pass-on multi-generational wealth; but it is healthy to introspect your specific situation to make sure you are not deluding yourself about it.


Obituary of Stephan M. Pollan (2018)