Book I: The Safe Road to Prosperity.
Section I: The Dumb Mistakes Almost Everyone Makes with Their Money.
1. Two Tracks, Two Heavens.
The two very different roads to Safe Prosperity or Real Riches
2. Worshipping Mammon
The bad trade-offs of loving money more than God, family or country, and how to avoid them. How to have both money and true happiness.
3. The Alien in Your Chest
Compound interest can be your best friend or your worst enemy. It is a two-edged sword—much more powerful than you thought.
4. The Great American Lie
Pretending to be rich by selling your future to buy the big house, the big SUV, the big home theater, the big boat, while living a life of quiet desperation when the monthly bills come in
5. How to Prosper by Earning 15 Percent in a 1-Percent World
In early 2003, interest rat es on riskless investments fell to 1 percent or less, torpedoing compounding programs below the waterline. Savvy investors still compounded their portfolios at 15 percent or even 20 percent in investments that were almost as riskless.
6. Social Security, the Ponzi Chain Letter
Why you would be much better off by not counting on Social Security, the biggest scam in the known universe.
Section II: Blowing Your Money in the Investment Markets: The Turnpike to Financial Hell.
7. Listening to Wall Street
Wall Street’s conventional wisdom has been 180° wrong almost forever. Here’s why, and how to tell.
8. The Bigger-Fool Theory of Investing
The stock market bubble of the late 1990s inflated because investors (speculators?) assumed that if they paid a foolish price for a stock, they would be able to sell it to a bigger fool.
9. Worshipping the Golden Calf
Too many investors become Gold Bugs and fall in love with their investment. Sometimes it’s a great investment, and sometimes it’s a sure loser; here’s how to tell the difference, when to buy it, and, more important, when not to.
10. The Financial Death Wish
Buying high and selling low is like a universal plague—most everyone does it. Here are the surprising reasons why you do it, and how to stop.
11. Buying On Margin
Buying on margin is a highly leveraged way to buy stocks, but it’s just as leveraged on the way down as it is on the way up. It’s not for amateur investors, but for sophisticated professionals with nerves of steel. My dad thought he was one, and it wiped him out.
12. Thinking the Unthinkable
You have life insurance, homeowner’s insurance, medical insurance, and so on to compensate you in case of common but unforeseen events. But there are other worst-case events no traditional insurance can protect us against, for which we have to create our own insurance. The prosperity or wealth strategies in this book can be endangered or totally aborted by such unexpected events. Here is the insurance you need, and why you need it.
Book II: The Secrets of the Rich—The Most Important Things Rich People Always Do.
13. Surprising Ways Rich People Get Rich with Leverage
All Really Rich people use several kinds of leverage, including some you never heard of. It’s one of the great secrets of wealth.
14. Getting Rich by Banishing Fear
There are a lot of great products and great business ideas that never become great fortunes. Why? Usually fear. Yielding to fear cost me two fortunes. Here’s how to get rich by facing your fears.
15. The Rich Person’s Mind-set
The Really Rich think differently. While the Safely Prosperous get that way by avoiding mistakes and debt, the rich are heavily in debt, and cheerfully make a lot of mistakes. The Safely Prosperous avoid risk like the plague, but the Really Rich take carefully calculated risks by the carload. The difference? The mind-set!
16. Financial Winners in Bad Times
Hard times are loaded with opportunities for the Really Rich. That’s when they find bargains in the stock market, good but cheap companies to buy, and talented people to hire at reasonable wages. It’s also when competitors are pulling the bedclothes over their heads, so they don’t even see you as you steal their market share.
17. The Capitalist Manifesto: Creating Wealth Out of Thin Air
Capitalists aren’t just rich plutocrats on Wall Street. America has millions of them, and you can become one too. The strategies I will teach you in this chapter have created more millionaires that any other get-rich strategy.
18. Getting Rich by Investing in Start-ups
If you don’t want to go through the trouble and worry of becoming a capitalist yourself, there are ways to invest in those who do. Most start-ups fail, but you can separate the sheep from the goats. I will show you how and when to jump in, and when to run like hell.
The last great reason the Really Rich got that way
20. Was It Worth It?
Now that you have read the whole book, it’s time to make a decision. Do you want to be Safely Prosperous or Really Rich? There are several things you ought to consider seriously.
Appendix A: The Ruff Times Newsletter.
Appendix B: Recommended Vendors.