In an Over-Communicated, Intrusive World, Simple is Better

Clason’s “The Richest Man in Babylon” Part 2 – The 7 Cures for a Lean Wallet and The 5 Laws of Money

Copyright © 2007 Ed Bagley

Part 1 of this 2 Part series ends the synopsis of George Clason’s book “The Richest Man in Babylon,” but Clason raises an important question: Why should
so few men be able to acquire so much gold?

The answer is because they know how.

One may not condemn a man for succeeding because he knows how. Neither may one with justice take away from a man what he has fairly earned, to give to men of less ability.

And so it was that the good king of Babylon sought out the richest man in Babylon to teach to others in his kingdom the secrets of his success.

This is a synopsis of what the richest man taught to the people
of Babylon:

The Seven Cures for a Lean Wallet

1) Start your wallet to fattening. Save one-tenth of all you earn. Remember that a part
of all I earn is mine to keep. Do this faithfully. Do not let the simplicity of this escape you.

When I ceased to pay out more than nine-tenths of my earnings,
I got along just as well.
I was not shorter than before, and, money came to me more easily than before.

2) Control your expenses. How is it that all do not earn the same yet all have lean wallets? Here is the truth: That which each of us calls our “necessary expenses” will always grow to equal our incomes unless we protest to
the contrary.

Confuse not necessary expenses with desires. We all have more desires than our earnings can gratify. Examine which of the accepted expenses of living can be reduced or eliminated. Let your motto be 100% of appreciated value demanded for every dollar spent.

Budget your expenses so that your actual necessities are met without spending more than nine-tenths of your earnings.

3) Make your money multiply. Protect your growing treasure by putting it to labor and increasing. Money in your wallet earns nothing. Money that we earn from our money is but a start; it is the earnings generating earnings that builds fortunes.

When the richest man in Babylon loaned money to the shield maker to buy bronze, he said this: “Each time I loaned money to the shield maker, I loaned back also the rental he had paid me. Therefore not only did my capital increase, but its earnings likewise increased.”

4) Guard your money from loss. Everyone has an idea of how to make quick money; few, however, have the evidence of making money to justify their idea, scheme or offer of quick riches. The first sound principle of investment is security for your principal.

Before you loan your money to any man assure yourself of his ability to repay your loan, and of his reputation to do so. Make no one a present of your hard-earned treasure.

Consult the wisdom of those experienced in handling money for profit. Such advice is often freely given for
the asking, and may possess more value than the amount you
are about to invest.

5) Make your home a profitable investment. When you can set aside only nine-tenths of what you earn to live, and can use a part of that nine-tenths to improve the investment in your housing, do it; owning your own home is also an investment that grows with your wealth.

Your family deserves a home they can enjoy and call their own. It builds a sense of stability and well-being.

6) Ensure a future income. Build income-producing assets that do not require you to work forever. We will all grow old and die.

You should prepare a suitable income for the days to come when you are no longer younger and cannot work as hard, and to make preparations for your family should you no longer be with them to comfort and support them. Provide in advance for the needs of your growing age, and the protection of your family.

7) Increase your
ability to earn.
Desire precedes accomplishment, and the desire must be strong and definite. When you have backed your desire for saving $1,000 with the strength and purpose to secure it, you can then save $2,000.

Desires must be simple and definite. Desires defeat their own purpose when they are too many, too confusing, or too difficult to accomplish. Cultivate your own powers to study and become wiser, more skillful, and more productive.

Here is more sage advice from Clason’s masterpiece on financial matters:

The 5 Laws of Money

If you had to choose, would you choose tons of money or wisdom? Most men would take the money, ignore the wisdom, and waste the money. Here is the wisdom:

1) Money comes gladly and in increasing quantities to any man who will put aside not less than one-tenth of his earnings to create an estate for his future and the future of his family.

2) Money labors diligently and contently for the wise owner who finds for it profitable employment, multiplying unto itself in infinity if kept working diligently. Money multiplies itself in surprising fashion.

3) Money clings to
the protection of the cautious owner who invests it with the advice of men wise
in its handling.

4) Money slips away from the man who invests it in businesses or purposes that he is not familiar with, or which are not approved by those skilled in its keep. The inexperienced handler of money who trusts his own judgment, and puts his money in investments which he is not familiar, always pays with his money for his experience.

5) Money flees the man who would force it to impossible earnings, or who follows the alluring advice of tricksters and schemers, or who
trusts it to his own inexperience and romantic desires in investment.

Here is the hard lesson of the 5 Laws of Money: You cannot measure the value of wisdom in bags of money. Without wisdom, those who have it quickly lose money, but with wisdom, money can be secured by those who have it not.

This ends the condensation.

Little Big Man – 3 Stars (Good)

You know that “Little Big Man” has the makings of a good film when an historian visits Jack Crabb (Dustin Hoffman), a forgotten, 100-plus-year-old centenarian in an assisted living facility, to ask about how Native Americans lived in the Old West. It is said that Crabb lived among the Cheyenne, and indeed he did.

Both young Crabb and his sister Caroline were the sole survivors among their family during an Indian attack while heading West and are rescued by a Cheyenne and taken to their leader, Old Lodge Skins (Chief Dan George), who raises young Jack as a son after Caroline escapes back to civilization.

Jack finds life as a Cheyenne to be good, and becomes important by saving the life of Younger Bear. He is named “Little Big Man” by Old Lodge Skins because while small in size, he has a big heart.

From this improbable start, Jack recounts his walk through life with some amazing characters, including a preacher’s wife with an appetite for illicit sex, a snake-oil salesman, a Swedish woman who becomes his wife, a Cheyenne woman who becomes his wife and mother to his son, General George Armstrong Custer and Wild Bill Hickok.

He becomes a huckster of phony products, a gunslinger named the Soda Pop Kid, a friend of Will Bill Hickok, a general store owner, a drunk, a “mule skinner” and scout for General Custer, a trapper and a hermit.

It is General Custer who orders his troops to attack Jack’s Cheyenne family without cause and Jack’s Cheyenne wife and son are killed in the slaughter. Ultimately, it is Jack who leads Custer into the trap at Little Big Horn and becomes the “sole white survivor of the battle of Little Big Horn.”

Little Big Man, based on the 1964 novel by Thomas Berger, was directed by Arthur Penn and released in 1970. The film is not historically accurate, and does treat the Native Americans favorably and the U. S. Cavalry less favorably.

The screen adaptation with the help of Calder Willingham makes Little Big Man a balanced blend between humor and drama. The narration by the character Jack Crabb makes this film likeable and then some. Little Big Man is really the story of Jack’s relationship with his adopted grandfather, Old Lodge Skins.

Chief Dan George received Oscar and Golden Globe nominations as the Best Supporting Actor in this film. He was outstanding in his role as Old Lodge Skins. When his people are attacked and killed for no good reason, he will not run, saying “today is a good day to die.”

Old Lodge Skins calls his Cheyenne people “human beings”, noting that there is “an endless supply of white men” and “a limited supply of human beings.” He sees and feels the injustice being done to Native Americans who are given their own land and then attacked and killed without cause.

There are too many funny, poignant and dramatic moments in this film to recount them here. One of my favorites is when, after escaping with Jack’s help from the last of the brutal attacks on his people, Old Lodge Skins goes to the top of the mountain to die. He prays, and then lays down to die but wakes up when it begins to rain, asking Jack if he is still in this world.

Jack answers yes, to which he replies, “I was afraid of that. Well, sometimes the magic works, sometimes it does not,” and proceeds back down the mountain with Jack to eat dinner.

Dustin Hoffman set a record for portraying the greatest span of a single character in Little Big Man, playing Jack Crabb from age 17 to 121.

The narration by Jack Crabb, his walk through life, his contact with important people and his poignant story remind me of Tom Hanks and his role in “Forest Gump”. Both of these films are well done, have a story to tell worth hearing, and leave us a better person for the experience.

It has been 41 years since Little Big Man hit the big screen. Not much has been made of it, but there is a certain group of moviegoers like myself who will not let this film die a slow death. It is too good to not be seen and enjoyed by others. I feel the same way about “A Christmas Story” and a lot of others do too.

If you have not seen Little Big Man do yourself a favor while you still can.

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Sid Miller Wants to Know: What are you voting for?


That moment when someone says, “I can’t believe you would vote for Trump”

I simply reply “I’m not voting for Trump.”

I’m voting for the First Amendment and Freedom of Speech.

I’m voting for the Second Amendment and my right to defend my life and my family.

I’m voting for the next Supreme Court Justice(s) to protect the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

I’m voting for the continued growth of my retirement investments and the stock market.

I’m voting for an end to America’s involvement in foreign conflicts.

I’m voting for the Electoral College & the Republic we live in.

I’m voting for the Police to be respected once again and to ensure Law & Order.

I’m voting for the continued appointment of Federal Judges who respect the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

I’m voting for our jobs to remain in America and not be outsourced all over again to China, Mexico and other foreign countries.

I’m voting for secure borders and legal immigration.

I’m voting for the Military & the Veterans who fought for this Country to give the American people their freedoms.

I’m voting for the unborn babies that have a right to live.

I’m voting for continued peace progress in the Middle East.

I’m voting to fight against human/child trafficking.

I’m voting for Freedom of Religion.

I’m voting for the American Flag that is disrespected by the “mob.”

I’m voting for the right to speak my opinion & not be censored.

I’m not just voting for one person, I’m voting for the future of my Country.

I’m voting for my children and my grandchildren to ensure their freedoms and their future.

What are you voting for?

About the Source: Sid Miller is the Commissioner of Agriculture in the Great State of Texas.

(Ed’s Note: The current 2020 Presidential Election has been reduced to a choice between our “constitutional republic” form of government and creeping into a “socialist” form of government in America. We should not allow any political party in America to bring advancing socialism—example: The Green New Deal—under the guise of improving our constitutional republic. Every form of socialism as a government in history has failed to advance the welfare of the citizens therein. Smart people know that socialism does not secure our rights as citizens but rather reduces our personal rights to the point where we have none and ultimately end up as a dictatorship.)

Financial Thoughts
on Investing
by Warren Buffett

(Ed’s Note: The following condensation is from The Tao of Warren Buffett, written by Mary Buffett and David Clark and available for sale at Amazon and bookstores nationwide. I am always impressed by what Warren Buffett has to say and am doing this condensation to help promote their book.)

On Investing: Never be afraid to ask too much when selling offer too little when buying.
(Ed’s Note: How much you get from a sale or how much you have to pay when making a purchase determines whether you make or lose money and how rich you ultimately become.)

(Ed’s Note: For more of Warren Buffett’s advice go to the menu bar above and click on Financial Thoughts.)