Completely agree Brian! This is actually what I was trying to convey with the "- what exactly do I need to get the job done now?" bit but re-reading it now I see I should have been a bit more clear with "what exactly do I need to land the job and get it done on par with current tech right now?"
I think the core of my thinking and experience is there's always something else you can buy for your studio. Most of us cannot afford to get everything at once so start with the absolute essentials and then build up over time and as the need warrants it. Personally, I immediately begin to drool over a new product (hardware or software) but if I don't see an immediate need it would serve or a gap it would fill in my studio, I wait. If I'm still lusting after it for a while, I'll buy it if I've got some spare funds. If I've forgotten about it... then it was just shiny and cool (i.e. basically good advertising).