by Jerry Robinson | FTMDaily Editor-in-Chief
HOUSTON, May 19
I like to watch documentaries. A few evenings ago, my wife and I sat down to watch a documentary entitled, “The One Percent”. (It’s available on instant play on Netflix.) The documentary is produced by Jamie Johnson, one of the wealthy heirs of the Johnson and Johnson family dynasty. The film examines the growing disparity between the “haves” and the “have-nots” in American society.
While the film had several interviews with many of the top names in the business world, I found myself in disagreement with the film’s conclusions. In essence, the film conveyed the idea that becoming financially free in America has become impossible for most people, especially for those born into a lower-class family.
I take great issue with this idea.
What do the phrases “haves” and “have-nots” really mean anyway? Is it referring to the ability to consume? Or to overconsume?
Does it to refer to financial freedom? Or the freedom to spend your time the way that you want to?
What exactly do the “haves” possess that the “have-nots” do not have access to? Is it strictly money?
To be honest, I am not really sure. However, it seems like a strange argument and one that is designed to induce contention.
Instead of seeing a world full of “haves” and “have-nots,” I tend to see a world that is full of “producers” and “consumers.”
Obviously, everyone is a consumer on some level. We all must outsource some of our basic needs. Who today, for example, actually grows all of their own food, pumps their own drinking water, generates their own utility needs, and makes all of their own clothes? Perhaps some of our readers do. (And if so, I would love to hear from you.)
But the point is, all of us, in some way and on some level, choose to outsource many of our basic necessities to those who choose to “produce.”
Over the next several days, I am going to confront this issue of the “consumer” mindset vs. the “producer” mindset.
Friends, I believe that contained within this discussion is the key to breaking free from the “rat race” that been sold to Americans as the only way to survive financially.
We will also discuss the importance of value creation. Are you creating value?
This is one of the most powerful questions that we should ask ourselves on a consistent basis. This is because “value creation” precedes success in many areas of our lives.
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In The News Today…
1. LABOR WATCH: The number of Americans filing for their first week of unemployment benefits dropped sharply for the second straight week. Today, the Labor Department said that 409,000 Americans filed for their first week of unemployment benefits in the week ended May 14.
2. MARKET WATCH: U.S. stocks were set to edge higher at Thursday’s open, as investors weigh a slightly better-than-expected report on the labor market, and await additional reports on the housing and manufacturing sectors.
3. IMF UDPATE: Frenchman Dominique Strauss-Kahn resigned as IMF chief Wednesday, saying he wants to devote “all his energy” to fighting sexual assault charges in New York. The European Commission insisted Thursday that the next leader of the International Monetary Fund must come from the 27-nation European Union, a stance backed by Germany, the continent’s economic heavyweight.
Another example of government’s wasteful spending of your tax dollars…
Cartoon of the Day…
Jerry Robinson – FTMDaily.com
Jerry Robinson is an economist, published author, columnist, international conference speaker, and the editor of the financial website, FTMDaily.com. In addition, Robinson hosts a weekly radio program entitled Follow the Money Weekly, an hour long radio show dedicated to deciphering the week’s economic news.