Liberty for All: What You Need to Gain and Retain Wealth
Imagine the agony and the frustration.
You did it. You worked hard to reach financial success. And now, because of somebody else’s decisions, you’re broke.
Sadly, it’s not hard to imagine. We must merely open the newspaper to see images of retirees lining up, waiting hours just to get a fraction of the money they need... the money they earned.
For those of us who strive for the sort of liberty created by wealth, the situation in Greece is flat-out disgusting. It’s a despicable scene of what happens when we’re not careful with our choices.
I don’t need to tell you what’s going on or why. The situation has been well covered. But as the educational arm of a club devoted to building wealth, we feel obligated to show you what it takes to avoid disastrous situations like we’re seeing in Greece.
After all, the fallout from an economy fueled by debt is coming to a town near you. Consider this a slice of real-world education.
Last week, I chatted with one of The Oxford Club’s strongest European connections... a native of Greece. We talked about what’s happening and how to avoid the catastrophe stirred by a government that rules on emotion, not economic reality.
He painted a picture that was exactly as we’d expect. The folks who prepared for financial self-reliance are unscathed by the situation. Those who didn’t... they’re hours deep in a line fighting to access their own money.
They’re the victims of a government game of blackmail - vote our way and you’ll get your money back.
It’s fitting imagery as fireworks light up the nighttime sky here in the States. As we celebrate our nation’s independence, we’re forced to ponder just what it means.
We’ve certainly seen the effects of dependence. But what does it take to walk through chaos like we’re seeing in Greece without becoming a victim of this expensive game of chicken?
Our friend from Greece gave us some clues.
First and foremost, it’s clear that liberty starts with the correct mindset.
“Greece has 11 million citizens, and it has 11 million prime ministers,” said our source as he explained the typical Greek citizen’s thoughts on government control.
Everybody thinks for themselves.
The sort of mentality it takes to overcome government missteps seems bred into the nation’s culture. As the birthplace of democracy and the evils that tends to come with it, the Greek people have millennia’s worth of experience to pull from.
Evading government controls is part of everyday life.
“When the government raised the value-added tax to 23%,” our source continues, “most citizens simply shrugged their shoulders and said, ‘I’m not going to pay that.’”
Most folks, we are liable to say, found a way to avoid the tax legally. After all, Greek law is well-known for its loopholes.
It’s that sort of mentality we emphasize when we tell Members of the Club to do whatever they can to slash their investing expenses. As one of our Four Pillars of Wealth, managing your portfolio to minimize taxes is a vital way to increase your wealth. (One example of what we recommend is to do your short-term trading within your IRA. Another is to avoid actively managed funds in your nonretirement accounts. For more, click here.)
Our source goes on to tell us that so many of his friends aren’t worried about the situation because they have independent minds. They’ve long been prepared.
They have their assets spread across the globe. After all, if anybody knows the value of diversification, it’s the Greeks. Their homeland has been in default with its external debt a full 50% of its time as a sovereign nation.
But it’s vital to remind you that it’s not just Greece.
Don’t forget Argentina... or Venezuela... or Ecuador. All three have suffered major defaults in the last 10 years.
Closer to home, the investors who loaned money to Puerto Rico are about to get a reminder that governments often don’t pay.
And, sadly, it’s a similar story for pension recipients in states like Pennsylvania, Illinois and Arizona.
Our point here is that in order to gain and retain wealth, you must have an independent mind.
You must not settle for the path of least resistance.
If you do, you’ll no doubt end up dependent on somebody else... just like those thousands of Greek citizens with no money in their wallets and a government in chaos.
The idea of financial liberty is more important today than at any other time in modern history, except perhaps for the years surrounding the Great Depression.
Liberty starts with a mindset. It’s what we call Liberty Through Wealth. You must shun the idea of financial mediocrity and fight to stay above the fray.