Hi Jake,

Thanks for the thoughtful response. On paper, I mostly agree with the points you make.

However, we need to think about who this article is aimed at, people with large amounts of consumer debt in a recession.

  1. These are almost certainly not people with 6–12 months of expenses in an emergency fund. The reason they are in debt is because they are spending more than they were making which means they likely don’t have a lot saved to begin with.
  2. That also means they are the people least likely to have an IRA or other retirement savings.

When times are good or at least stable pay down that debt is quick a possible. During a recession, we need to pause our regular plan and reevaluate to make sure we can make it through to the other side.

I lived through the 08–09 crisis on little income and the name of the game was paying rent and getting groceries each month.

Thanks again for your comment, I appreciate the discussion!


Economic policy wonk by day. Personal finance writer by night. I write about investing, debt, and all things related to money. Editor of Making of a Millionaire

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