I teach and my wife is a social worker. Those aren't very high paying jobs. In a ranking of the lowest paid jobs with a college degree, social worker is #1, elementary education is #2 and general education is #7. Who would have guessed there would be a capitalist with so little capital? Before you pity me, I'll explain why our choice of college degrees were incredibly rational. I've already posted on how Americans in 2010 are richer than any civilization ever. I've also mentioned how that wealth has increased faster than our life expectancy, giving us more money, but less time to spend it. And I discussed that wealth has a diminishing positive impact on happiness, especially after about $40,000. And even though my wife and I make less than the average person in the US, we have a very clear plan for children, college payments, and retirement.
We chose low paying jobs not so we could maximize our income, but our goals. Though I am currently working very hard to create the intellectual property needed in the classroom, my workload will decrease (and has decreased) as I gain more experience. My hope is that by the time I have children, I will actually be working less than the average American (currently 8.8 hours a day). I currently have a spring break, a Christmas break, two months off in the summer, and school is over before 3 o'clock. In the future I hope to take advantage of this extra time and spend it with my lovely wife (and future kids), performing improv, and becoming more relationally responsible for my community. I am free riding off the Industrial Revolution and the hard work of the generations since. Hopefully I'm heeding the Biblical warnings against personal wealth while enjoying the comfort that has been produced by society as a whole. This helps to explain my simultaneous feeling of sympathy and appreciation for those entrepreneurs currently working hard to create more wealth for future generations. Being productive is important, but it's not solely measured by personal income or national production.