This is specifically what I am doing in my own financial life. It simplifies things. It allows you to focus on being creative. It avoids massive risk and waste.
The 3Ds are debt, derivatives and deceit. They are actually closely related monsters even though it is not obvious.
Derivatives are financial instruments with value that comes from other financial instruments. There are many kinds and they are VERY difficult to avoid because they come with common names like ETFs, Mutual Funds, Options. Theses are the least damaging kind. There are others (non-exchange traded or private derivatives) that nearly destroyed the financial system in 2007-2008. You might have heard of CMOs – one particular type of private derivatives.
The lies hidden in your financial affairs can really hurt you. The Enron scandal destroyed a couple of companies but it had severe consequences to their shareholders. The Madoff scam destroyed vast amounts of the charitable work of an entire generation within the Jewish community. More recently, fraud surrounding the sub-prime bubble caused many middle aged people to postpone retirement plans forever.
It can be hard to detect deceit but once you root it out, you need to protect yourself by avoiding investments that are based in lies. This often means fighting your own greed because “everyone is making a killing with this”.
The saddest victim of deceit is shattered trust. People severely injured will frequently blame the wrong institutions, people or companies. That postpones or prevents their individual recoveries from the scam.
The first step is to identify and reduce exposure to the 3Ds if you own publicly traded securities. You need a plan to reduce your exposure. They are probably in your 401(k), your stock portfolio and even your bank account.