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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Wealth and Power-

I have lived on this Earth for half of a century, plus a bit of change. Fifty nine years, in April. I kind of discount the nine years a bit, since most of us have a pretty limited perspective before the age of ten. We are still developing our prejudices and delusions, and so are not reliable as witnesses or as people to judge the value of one thing or another.

So, half a century. I have watched the struggle for power, internationally, nationally, and locally. I must have dropped the ball in those early years, because I really still don't get it. Much of it looks like a bunch of kids playing "King of the Hill" on a pile of manure. Sure, you might get to be king for a while, but it is still a pile of manure. If you play the game right, you end up covered in manure. Hardly worth the investment, it seems to me.

You might safely conclude that I lack wealth, and consequently am not very powerful. I am also relatively free of manure. I can't say if that is good, or not. Still, I eat regularly, live indoors when I choose, and have the power to write stuff. Stuff that is largely manure-free.

I am pretty sure people pursue wealth in order to gain power. People pursue power mostly out of insecurity. They fear others with power, and so if opportunity presents itself they gain wealth and power. Lil' Kim (of Korea, not music) proves that there is some wisdom in all of that.

So, wealth and power. Most of those who 'represent' me in government have a bit of both. How rich people can represent someone like me, a person of non-wealth and extremely limited power, I don't know. That may be a matter for another blog. Perhaps it already has been a blog I wrote, but forgot about.

How do you gain wealth? Well, if you do it legally you must live below your means. If you make X amount of money each year, you must live on less. We will call that, uh, Y. So, X-Y=I. See? Algebra was worth all of that time in school sitting in confusion as you watched the stud football player fondling the hot cheerleader in the back of the classroom. Oh, wait. That was just my experience. Sorry.

You take ( I ) and invest it. See? I. Invest. Variables. Important stuff. You put that money somewhere safe. As it builds up, some of the accumulated money can be placed in somewhat riskier investments. Keep in mind, an Emu farm is not considered a safe investment, and therefore should be considered risky. Still, who knows? It might pay off. Anyway, you do this living below your means and investing thing for years, and eventually you have a bit of wealth.

Unless you inherit something more to work with, this program hardly ever works. Earning your second million is always easier, because you have so much more to risk. Money you can risk which won't leave you living in a cardboard box behind the donuts shop. If you didn't inherit that first million, you may have to live in a box behind the donuts shop just to have a lifestyle below your means. You know, X.

Of course, this requires discipline in your youth. No fast cars, fancy foods and liquors. No big screen televisions. Just basic cable on your thrift store little television. It also requires discipline in later years. No botox or plastic surgery or trade-ins on spouses. Discipline. Order. Steady investing. Yeah. That's all likely to happen.

I came up with another plan. Say you can manage to save a bit. Just in a bank account. Put it back for the annual 'investment.' Go to a casino with your nest-egg. Every year. Put it on Red on the Roulette Wheel. Or, Black. One, or the other. It doesn't matter. The risk is the same. So close to a coin toss as to be the same. All on that color. One spin.

If you loose, you begin saving for next year. If you win, you walk away. 100% return on your investment, and  you still begin saving for next year. Put it somewhere safe. Never touch it again. Ever. You don't get to enjoy it. This is your wealth. If you keep doing this, year after year, you will win at least some of the time. Plus, if you keep going back to the same place you will get comps. Free stuff from the casino. Hey, you are a Big Roller.

Sure, walking away will take discipline. However, that discipline will only be needed once a year, rather than the discipline of regular saving and investing, requiring lots of homework and learning and gaining knowledge and all of that stuff. Eventually you can own that donuts shop, and live in an apartment above it.

What about that power thing? You won't get that much wealth, whichever program you use. Those powerful people either inherited their wealth, or stole it. Like Lil' Kim. Of Korea, not music.

Next up: Spend Your Way to Prosperity. Only $75 for my seminar. Reserve your place now.


Dan said...

Dave Ramsey is powerful. He has a daily radio show and has 100s of 1000s of folks that tune in. He sends his disciples out to churches to teach the gospel of financial freedom using the parable of living without credit. He also sells a lot of stuff that has made him a very wealthy man.

Maybe we should have him go see Li'l Kim (Korea not music) and explain to them how this works.

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