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The Lords of Finance

Follow the money to know how to make money today

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Hello, my friend, and welcome to the 460th episode of The Sales Podcast. I'm Wes Schaeffer, The Sales Whisperer, your host. 

"The quartet of central bankers did, in fact, succeed in keeping the world economy going, but they were only able to do so by holding U.S. interest rates down and by keeping Germany afloat on borrowed money. It was a system that was bound to come to a crashing end. Indeed, it held the seeds of its own destruction. Eventually, the policy of keeping U.S. interest rates low to shore up the international exchanges precipitated a bubble in the U.S. stock market. 

"By 1927, the Fed was thus torn between two conflicting objectives to keep propping up Europe or to control speculation on Wall Street. You try to do both and achieved neither. Its attempts to curb speculation were too halfhearted to bring stocks back to Earth, but powerful enough to cause a collapse in lending to Germany, driving most of Central Europe into depression and setting in train deflationary forces throughout the rest of the world. 

"Eventually, in the last week of October 1929, the bubble burst, plunging the U.S. into its own recession. The U.S. stock market bubble thus had a double effect on the way up. It created a squeeze in international credit that drove Germany and other parts of the world into recession. And on the way down, it shook the U.S. economy. 

"After 1929, responsibility for world monetary affairs ended up in the hands of a group of men who understood none of this, whose ideas about the economy were at best outmoded; and at worst, plain wrong." 

So that is from the ending -- this is page 502-503 of a book from, I want to say 2004; I look it up in a second here -- it's called the Lords of Finance or just "Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke The World." Liaquat Ahamed -- very interesting book, quite detailed. When did this come out? Copyright 2009, thought was a little bit older. 

I read this over the summer, almost finished it on my RV trip back in June -- basically did, then I got the 'Rona. And so I've been meaning to get to this. It's a deep book. It gets into looking at the early 1900s, how we emerged from WWI, looked at the four major central banks, of the U.S., the U.K., Germany and France; the impact of reparations on Germany and the rest of the world, the impact of the gold standard, sort of looking at the games that FDR played. 

And the reason I wanted to talk about this on The Sales Podcast, so you understand a little bit of insight on what the heck's going on right now. The Federal Reserve and the U.S. Treasury and Congress and D.C., the White House, they are playing a lot of games. And we think that because they're out of town and they wear a nice suit and we see them on TV, we think that they know what the heck they're doing. But in this book -- and I'll look it up and give you the references -- but it talks about FDR literally sitting in bed, his team coming over in the morning, watching him eat breakfast, reading the newspaper and just randomly, literally pulling numbers out of his butt to set the price of gold for the day. It's like things you could just -- you know, they kept it secret back then, but it was kind of an open secret that that's literally what was going on. 

So I just want you to be -- trust but verify. Start digging in and asking questions. Because the steps that the Federal Reserve is taking today -- the financial stimulus, the emergency loans, the extended unemployment -- it's going to impact you. And I understand you may not be a financial adviser. You may not have a lot of money invested. Your money may be at risk right now. I mean, who knows? But you need to understand what is going on because, look, it's better to know that a storm is coming and begin to prepare than to just be caught off guard. 

You know, I grew up in the South. Hurricanes just were a part of life. I remember tying down trees and filling bathtubs with water and getting coolers and ice, getting everything ready, boarding up some things; sometimes leaving. You know, once I was married wife, a kid, another kid on the way; didn't mess around with that. I mean, I just got out of Dodge. 

But compare that to an earthquake. I haven't had any big earthquakes here where I live in Southern California. But I felt them. And there's obviously been big ones and there's no warning there. You're just hanging out and boom, roof's falling in on your head. So I'd much rather face a hurricane or be threatened by them than an earthquake. And that's kind of how I want to approach this. I want you to be prepared. I want you to know what's going on, because that even if it's bad news, at least you've got the news. 

And how does this apply to sales? Well, you know what, sales is life. So how does this apply? It's like, look, if you have bad news to tell a prospect or even a customer, you better get it out of the way, okay? You need to understand how to position it, how to understand the true needs and wants and desires of your prospects so you can put yourself in the best light. 

But you can't lie. A good customer would rather hear the bad news early and deal with it than you string them along. I've always said our job in sales is to sort, sift, and separate -- our number one job in sales is to prospect. And when we prospect, we are disqualifying the prospect. And so I'd rather hear "no" early than do a song and dance and wine and dine for days and weeks and months on end, only to then address the elephant in the room that we knew probably was unavoidable, was a true objection, an obstacle that could not be removed. 

So you got to dig in. You've got to look at what's really going on, face it and deal with it. So if nothing else you get out of this, I hope you understand that experts really are not very good, quite often. The definition of an expert is they come from out of town, they carry a briefcase. We've got plenty of those around. So who are you turning to, who you are relying on? You know, the reality is you can't keep up on everything. You do have to pick and choose who you follow, who's going to give you the Cliff Notes. I get it. 

But don't hold those people up on a pedestal. Question them, dig in; make sure they're staying on track. Make sure they give you the facts, not an opinion. You're the one that has to form your opinion based on the facts. So make sure you're dealing with people that are shooting straight with you. 

But spent some time going through this book. It's a huge book, 500-plus pages, but some amazing stories about international finance and war and how interesting little issues with people -- little preferences, snide remarks, vanity -- literally shifted and tilted the world on its axis. One dude like to collect paintings The guy was just too busy dating. A couple of guys were sick -- I mean, take months off at a time. Imagine that. Can you imagine taking two to six months off every year to handle, I don't know, tuberculosis? I mean, that's what the leader of the Federal Reserve was doing. 

The leader of of the UK Reserve would have nervous breakdowns. And it's not like you could text and get a quick answer. These guys would literally be like almost unfindable. I mean, you'd have to send a telegraph to somewhere and they'd get on a horse, a car -- but a rickety car on rickety roads to try to get a message. I mean, just crazy -- while the world is crumbling down. That's what was going on. So crazy times. So that's also why I say you got to toughen up. "These are unprecedented times." Whatever. Okay? Whatever. 

We had a bad, bad flu, 100,000 people dying in 1968, '69. Millions, tens of millions dying around the world in the Spanish flu, 1917, 1918. You know, the Great Depression, Korean War -- I mean, WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam War; good grief, almost 20 years now in the Middle East; the Great Recession of '08. We've had a lot of bad times. 

And look, I do believe we've got a hard rain coming. When I moved to Southern California December of '04, moving in from from the outside, looking in, it was obvious the emperor has no clothes. So we rented and I was correct on the direction and the severity of the collapse. I was wrong on my timing. It took three-plus years for it to really happen. There's an old saying that the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent. So let's say I had shorted the market; like, it should be going down, should be going down, the fundamentals are all wrong. There's no way they should be going up. There's always something you don't know. 

But I didn't. I just rented my house. After five years, he got foreclosed on. We moved in another house and bought on a short sale, at literally 40-ish percent off from its high. Now we moved into this house, so like February 2010, we closed on it early like January 2011, so we've owned it now nine and a half years and it's appreciated tremendously. So the timing was right. 1:17:45 

Now, as I look at this crazy market, I think it's even crazier. There's a lot of Federal Reserve intervention going on, probably bigger than what they were dealing with in WWI/WWII era. So you need to have at least a cursory knowledge of this stuff so you can just be prepared. So with that, let's get you prepared. 

So the introduction kicks off in August 15th, 1931. As I mentioned, the governor of the Bank of England has been indisposed as a result of the exceptional strain to which he has been subjected in recent months. So he heads to Canada for months. So the one remaining guy of the four -- and he kind of skips ahead, then they go back and tells a story -- the one remaining guy with some history, some intelligence, some experience, he is having a breakdown while the world is breaking down. 

And so they go into some of the specifics of this guy. He would travel under a faulty name, a made-up name; talking about he'd climb over the boat, exited with a rope ladder one time to avoid the press. You know, this guy, he didn't want to talk to anybody, and he's the most experienced central banker In the world. So as all this is collapsing, production in almost every country had collapsed, and the two worst hit, the United States and Germany had fallen 40 percent. Factories throughout the industrialized world -- car plants of Detroit, steel mills of the Ruhr, from the silk mills of Lyons to the shipyards of Tyneside were shuttered or working at a fraction of capacity. Sounds like right now during COVID. 

Businesses had cut prices by 25 percent in the two years since the slump had begun. But heck, I'm seeing prices go up. A friend of mine is in the car business and I talked to him, I don't know, a month ago roughly. And he said one of his dealerships normally has 350 units on hand. They were down to 175, I think he said, in this month, August; expected them to have like as little as 75 in September. 

So production is down, but it's down too much and there's still enough demand that it's actually driving prices up. Because I'm looking at a new truck -- or even a used truck; I usually don't buy new -- but everything is up. You know, Jeeps, diesel trucks, anything like that that I'm interested in is way up. I mean, it's almost like the Jimmy Carter stagflation of the late '70s. It's just when you have stagnant economy, you shouldn't also have inflation. When you have big unemployment and big interest rates, I mean, it's like what is going on? You got to dig in to understand what was going on. 

So the United States, the world's largest economy, some 8 million men and women, close to 15 percent of the labor force, were out of work; and that would go up before the end of the decade. But this is only in the first two years. And remember, the U.S. was much smaller, less than half the size that we are now. Another 2 and a half million men in Britain, 5 million in Germany. France, though, was kind of protected and we'll get into that later, but just the way things had worked out, a little bit of luck, a little bit of foresight. But you're talking about gangs of unemployed youths; encampments in Central Park. Unemployment led to violence and revolt. United States food riots broke out in Arkansas, Oklahoma and across the Central and Southwestern states. In Britain, the miners went out on strike, followed by the cotton mill workers and the weavers. 

Berlin was almost in a state of civil war during the elections of September 1930. The Nazis, playing on the fears and frustrations of the unemployed and blaming everyone else -- the allies, the Communists and the Jews -- for the misery of Germany gained close to 6 and a half million votes. They became the second largest parliamentary party after the Social Democrats. Meanwhile, on the streets, Nazi and communist Gangs clashed daily. Sounds kind of like maybe BLM and Antifa, and -- I don't know, the Bubbas, the Americans -- let's just call the Americans. 

There were coups in Portugal, Brazil, Argentina, Peru and Spain. Then banks started collapsing. December 1930, the Bank of the United States, which despite its name was a private bank, one of the largest single bank failures in U.S. history. Didn't we just have that in '08, '09, "too big to fail"? But they let it fail. Even froze some $200 million in depositors funds. And I was looking at the back of the book. It said basically I think we have to multiply it by like 200 to understand the numbers because like $200 million, you're like, yeah, big deal. 

But $200 million. So 360 times 200, $40 billion. Imagine a bank of $40 billion dollars just going under right now. That's what happened. So that was just one of the beginnings. May 1931, the biggest bank in Austria, owned by the Rothschilds, $250 million in assets, closed its doors. What would that be? Fifty billion. 

On June 20th, President Hoover, Herbert Hoover announced a one-year moratorium on all payments of debts and reparations stemming from the war. Don't we have people in Congress, even Trump, talking about don't pay your rent, don't pay student loans? I mean, all kind of stuff. Kind of similar, huh? The third largest bank in Germany foundered, precipitating a run on the whole German banking system and a tidal wave of capital out of the country. So they're on the gold standard, so as money leaves in and the country has to increase its interest rates to try to attract the money back, that increases the debt, the ability to repay it. And then internally, inside of the country, when you have high interest rates, it's hard to borrow, so it's hard to take risks to to invest in infrastructure or launch a new business. It just gets ugly when these things start happening. Declared a bank holiday, restricted how much German citizens could take from their banks, just like happened in the U.S. previously; spread to the City of London, which had been Lending to Germany. So they found some of their claims now frozen -- crazy. 

The Bank of England was forced to borrow $650 million from banks in France and the United States to prevent its gold reserves from being completely depleted. Because again, back then, if you lost your gold, you basically didn't -- you had no right, no ability to issue any money, because when you're on the gold standard, you can have a certain percentage of your money backed by gold. And so they were in a tight bind and it just kept getting worse. 

Ultimately what we learn from all of this is that despite the best intentions of the government and these bankers and everyone else, they just made it worse. They just made it worse, and we see that all the time. We see it right now going on. I promise you, the actions -- the law of unintended consequences, the actions, the steps that our so-called leaders in government are taking are going to make things worse. They're making it worse with COVID. I mean, literally, New York, New Jersey, the governors literally killed their elderly people. I think they should be prosecuted, but maybe that's a topic for another episode. But look, the government is not your friend. Government is not the solution. The government is the problem. But I digress. 

You know, John Maynard Keynes, he starts making a name for himself. He's talking to folks in Moscow. You know, Moscow's jumping on this, right? They're saying this is the last the culminating crisis of capitalism and then our existing order of society will not survive it. That's Keynes quoting sources in Moscow. But another guy, the historian Arnold toynbee, basically talking about in 1931 men and women all over the world were seriously contemplating and frankly discussing the possibility that the Western system of Society might break it down and cease to work. This is 90 years ago, 81 years ago. We're having some of the same discussions right now, aren't we? We're not going to survive -- America is not going to survive. The world is coming to an end. 

The world as you know it may come to an end. There may be some big changes, things you've got to adapt to, but we'll keep bumping along -- not without a lot of pain. The entire '30s, 1930s, was just brutal. It literally took a world war to pull our economies out of it and, you know, I think some of these guys wanted it. I know Germany was egged into the First World War and they were probably egged into the Second. Eisenhower warned us about the vast military industrial complex and that's been going on a long time. Presidents want to be wartime presidents. 

I don't know. It's the ego or whatever; prove that they're macho. But the more guys I've gotten to know in special operators -- spec ops, Navy SEALs; I do the swim every January -- and that's on now, HelpWesSwim.com if you want to donate. I'm going to swim January 17th, I think it is 2021. It's always right in the middle of January, because they want it to be as cold as possible. But the more I get to know these guys, they're elite warriors, the cream of the top, the cream the cream [sic]. And as these guys get some distance behind them after their careers they want peace. They've lived it. They've lived the -- they're endured the atrocities, the collateral damage, the pain, the suffering that war brings on and they're like, man, I don't want that anymore. So interesting dichotomy there. But all these presidents want to be wartime presidents. 

But one more little quote here from the same section. Montagu -- so he's the French dude -- Montagu Norman had written just a few months before to his counterpart -- I'm sorry, he's the British guy, so he's writing it to France -- Moreau, Émile Moreau. He says "Unless drastic measures are taken to save it, the capitalist system throughout the civilized world will be wrecked within a year." He says, "I should like this prediction to be filed for future reference." So they're wanting to hedge their bets. They're wanting to be known as being prescient, being able to tell the future. 1:05:13

But again, it's all it's all doom and gloom. The experts did not know what to do. The experts did not know what was happening. The experts did not know what would happen. Sound familiar? So, "Yeah, but Wes we're more modern now, we have computers and anything else." Give me a break. The human brain, the human psyche, the human ego, the human vanity is not changed. 

Now look, pply this to your business. Apply this to sales. Apply this to negotiation. You think the other person is so erudite, so smart, They know more than you -- like, whatever. In your niche, you should be adding value to them. If not, they don't need you. But if they need you and and you're a good person, have a good solution, then you know more than them about what it is you're discussing. So stand tall. Don't let these people B.S. Don't let them pull the wool over your eyes. Don't let them outposture you. They could literally be FDR sitting in bed, eating his poached eggs or whatever -- I forget what he -- I think it was poached eggs -- and just pulling numbers out of his butt as you want the price of gold to be that day. 

So don't think that you don't know what you're talking about. Don't think that you can't charge good money for what it is that you do. These guys, these so-called experts, the world was was hanging on their every word; they didn't know what was happening. They were having nervous breakdowns and leaving at the pinnacle -- at the exact moment they were needed, they were leaving. 

And then later on the book -- I don't know if I have time to get into it, but they talk about just the petty squabbles, just guys wanting to get back at each other and literally setting the world on fire because of a personal squabble. So play your cards close to the vest. Don't let petty things like that derail big deals. Seek to find a good solution for everyone and your life, your sales, your business, your profitability will thank you for it. 

All right. So skipping ahead, a few pages. The author talks about what is a central bank? What was his role back then? What is it right now? And he admits central banks are mysterious institutions. The full details of their inner workings [are] so arcane that very few outsiders, even economists, fully understand them. Boiled down to its essentials, the central bank is a bank that has been granted a monopoly over the issuance of currency. And that is true even today. Do you know what a central bank is? Can you explain it like I'm five? We look at Reddit r/ELI5, explain it like I'm five. Most people cannot, and yet they're manipulating interest rates as I record this right now. 

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are talking about like a .5 and a .6 percent fee on Refinancing because they are uncertain about the viability of loans moving forward -- and they're not the federal bank, but you need to understand how all these big institutions interact with one another because the Fed will set the lending rates between banks. And then Freddie and Fannie are obviously insuring big mortgage securities, packaging these mortgages, turning them into mortgage-backed securities. I mean, that's we're literally getting back to what happened in 2008. There's weird things. 

And again, I want you -- I'm going through this so you understand, can start to piece some things together. Do your own research. You know, I'm not an economist. I used to be a financial guy many years ago. I still have an interest in it, but I'm not an expert on any of this as well. I'm not a professor, but I do dig into it. It has influenced how I've purchased my own home, what I've done with it over the years, how I've looked at gold and silver and other precious metals, now starting to get into cryptocurrencies, still into some real estate. But you need to understand these big levers. 

And look at -- golly, I was just reading today as well, REI, the outdoor clothing and whatever company, they created an eight-acre campus and they're not even moving into it. It's brand new, ready to move into, and they're like, nope, everybody's working from home. So you're going to see big corporate plays going on. Companies are leaving Manhattan. Individuals -- I know personally two couples that are -- one just moved and had had breakfast with them last week in Bastrop. They moved from right here in Murietta to Bastrop, Texas. Another is moving from right here. They just had a baby, younger couple and making good money. They're leaving right here in Temecula to go to Leander, which is northwest of Austin. Bastrop is southeast of Austin. So Joe Rogan just moved. So when you see people with means leaving, start paying attention. 

And you see companies letting their people work from home. I think Twitter said, hey, you can work from home forever. I think Google and Apple are letting people stay home until like early 2021. There's a huge shift in commercial real estate. Well, where do big entities like the Harvard endowment with $50 billion or whatever they have, where do they put their money? Quite often in big REITs -- real estate investment trusts. What those invest in? Eight-acre campuses and 80-story skyscrapers. And if these if these things are 30 and 50 and 80 percent and 100 percent vacant, where are they going to make their money? 

What would they ask the Federal Reserve to do? Would the Federal Reserve start buying real estate? They're buying bonds; they're buying stocks. Like what in the hell is going on? Is that even legal? I don't think it is. But do you know this stuff? 

So there were issues with this going on in 1931. There's issues going on with it right now, today. And look, I was talking about cryptocurrency and everybody knows Bitcoin, but there's a whole lot to that space. I probably need to have an expert come on the podcast and explain this in more detail. But because the central banks have the ability to issue currency they literally created from nothing -- that's why it's called fiat currency -- by fiat, by declaration. It just is. 58:02

And at least back in the day, it was physical paper and it was backed by gold and there were limits. And look, there's pros and cons to everything. Personally, I think it was good to have something tangible backing our currency. Gold and silver have been money since biblical times, but now the Federal Reserve doesn't even have to go through the expense of making coins in paper. They just -- it's a computer program and they just push ones and zeros around -- well, ones with a whole lot of zeros -- trillions of dollars, just literally out of nothing. 

You know, you look at your -- pull out any money you have in your wallet. It says backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government. Well, I don't have a lot of faith in the credit of the United States, but everybody plays this game and then everybody's shocked and all comes crumbling down. I mean, I'm shocked it's lasted this long. There's an old saying in investing that the markets can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent. You can be right about the fundamentals and still be wrong on the timing and it'll bleed you dry. It's happened to many, many smart people. 

But these cryptocurrencies, they challenge a federal government, the treasury, the federal reserves of different nations. It challenges their authority to issue currency, and they are not going to fall for that. They're not going to go down without a fight -- any of these governments. I've seen them -- I've been investing in gold since at least 2002, maybe 2001 and 2002. I was buying gold at my local pawn shop for $350 an ounce cash. Right now it's over $2000. I follow the markets. It's so heavily manipulated by governments because it's real money. It's real value. And when governments can just enter some code on a computer screen and poof, they have money, it's immoral. But again, I digress. But understanding how all this comes into fruition, I mean, this would -- hell, this could be a 10-hour podcast if I went through every single thing.

But the purpose of creating these central banks -- and I think they came about in 1913, if I remember correctly, somewhere in that timeframe, maybe a little bit after that -- but they were created with the idea of smoothing out business cycles, smoothing out big peaks and valleys in stock markets and in runs on banks because they call it the Great Depression. Well, that means there were other depressions, right? Because it needed the qualifier of "Great." And so they think, oh, valleys are these bad depressions, we'll have the government -- so once the government gets involved, then you have the Great Depression. It's not a coincidence. You have people that one guy leading the bank has tuberculosis, leaves for months; another guy leading one of the federal banks in England has nervous breakdowns; the other guy starts getting in bed with Hitler; the other guy has a chip on his shoulder and plays games against Britain from France. 

So you get these guys manipulating things. Then you have the Great Depression. So I'm all for smoothing things out, if possible, to minimize people's pain, to have a fluid, smooth running economy. But when you get too much power in the hands of a few people, they cannot calculate everything. And back then, the population of the world was a fraction of what it is now. And so there's far more ramifications for these people to get it wrong, and they will. 

But like it said, all of these different patterns, all of these episodes -- each of these episodes differed in detail. Some originated in the stock market, some in the credit market, some in the foreign exchange market; occasionally, even in the world of commodities. Sometimes they affected a single country, sometimes a group of countries; very occasionally the whole world. All, however, shared a common pattern -- an eerily similar cycle from greed to fear. That's what caused issues in all the other depressions, and humans have not changed in 80 or 90 or 100 years:  greed to fear. 

Financial crises would generally begin innocently enough with a surge of healthy optimism among investors. Right now, everyone's happy about the stock market. The Nasdaq's at all time highs. Real estate is booming. I know a lot of realtors having to put in multiple offers. They're going above asking price. That couple I talked about moving to Leander, they didn't even see their home. The husband flew out. They put in an offer because they've got a new baby and they don't have time because houses are getting snatched up. If you want it, you've got to put your offer in and it better be above asking. So it's just crazy, right? 

So healthy optimism among investors over time, reinforced by cavalier attitudes to risk among bankers. So we just thought things were cavalier. When you look at the dotcom bubble, the Enron and WorldCom of 1999, 2000, the debauchery, the theft, then things leading up to the '08 crisis -- too big to fail, yeah, whatever. So you think there were some bankers that cavalier attitudes to risk? And again, you need to understand this to defend yourself, to position yourself to take advantage of the chaos that is coming. What are the similarities? You know, it's hard to predict the future, but you know that there are a lot of clues. History leaves clues if you're paying attention. 

This optimism would transform itself into overconfidence, occasionally, even into a mania. Look at Tesla. Tesla just had a 5:1 stock split. It's gone up, I think, fourfold this year, something just crazy. It's like the most valuable car company in the world. I have a Tesla. I love it. I agree they're on the right path, but, man, this kind of growth. Apple's making money despite stagnant earnings for the last five years. The Fed's buying $25.5 million of their bonds right now. Apple has $192 billion in cash, and yet we, through the Federal Reserve, are buying their bonds. What in the hell? 

Go look up the tulip bulb mania. You want to talk about -- it's not even a rabbit hole. I mean, it really happened. People were mortgaging their homes on futures of getting a plant, a little bulb, a a seedling that would grow into a flower. Unbelievable! And we are no better now, even though that was hundreds of years ago. The greed and fear inside of humans has not changed. You need to understand that in all of your dealings with people.

The accompanying boom would go on for much longer than anyone expected. Like I said, I moved into move here, Southern California, December of '04. I'm looking around. I'm like, these houses are crazy. We moved into a tract home. It was a big home, over 4000 square feet, but it was a tract home, almost no yard, right up close to your neighbor, side by side. We were at the beginning of a cul de sac -- really, a double cul de sac, so that was nice. But it was a tract home, no HOA, just no nothing. Nothing fancy -- no granite countertops or oak library, book office, nothing -- nothing. Just big. 

And they were saying that house, everybody that lived there, oh, prices have doubled in the last three years or four years, whatever. And it was worth like supposedly $700,000. And my wife's like, should we buy? Should we buy? I'm like, okay, here's my thinking on this. I said, look, if things continue down this path, then three years from now this house will be worth $1.4 million; double in three years and double again. And I'm like, no way. No way. Somewhere between now and three years, somewhere between now and another doubling, things are going to collapse. So we rented. 

And sure enough, it took about -- so that was early '05 when we moved in to the house. We moved and had to stay with her dad for about a month before it was ready. So January of '05, we moved in. Five years later, the dude got foreclosed because the bubble has burst. So we had to move out in 2012 -- I'm sorry, '05 to 2010 -- so it took three years, early '05 to the middle of '08, It took three and a half years, everything to collapse. So my timing was off a little bit, but the direction was correct. But again, it lasted longer than anyone expected. I'm like, no way you can just keep going. Like, it was so obvious. It was so corrupt, so impossible. You know, waiters at Applebee's had multiple houses on stated income. Like what? 

Then would come a sudden shock -- a bankruptcy, a surprisingly large loss, a financial scandal involving fraud. We've seen that. We saw it in '08. Who's going to break right now? You got so many bankruptcies happening and you can't even list them all --hundreds this year, big companies like hundred-million-dollar plus companies, big, and thousands of others. But none of those are broken the back yet, but let's see. Let's see who cracks. So again, whatever the event, it would provoke a sudden and dramatic shift in sentiment. Panic would ensue. 

Now, we saw this in March when COVID hit and everybody's freaking out and got a lockdown, blah, blah, blah. And then things recovered quickly. That was an induced panic by the government. But once people realized that the Fed can't keep printing trillions of dollars -- even now, Trump and Congress, they can't agree. Trump says, all right, give them some more money; Newsom right now saying we don't have the money to give. So people aren't getting those $600/week checks. So how long can that last? People don't get those big bonuses and they can't go get another job. Eventually, people realize, all right, something's happening and they panic. They are irrationally exuberant and they are irrationally un-exuberant, whatever that word would be. 

So as investors were forced to liquidate into a falling market, losses would mount, banks would cut back their loans and frightened depositors would start pulling their money out of banks. So this had happened many times, many times in the 1800s; it's happening again in the 1900s. The Federal Reserve was supposed to help fix that. It doesn't fix it; it only made it worse because you got just a handful of people. You know, we're all frail human beings with limited knowledge. They screwed it up and they made it worse. 

So the Federal Reserve is supposed to forestall panics and other financial crises; supposed to help establish trust in banks. How well do they do? Yeah. For some, the jury's still out 80 years later. Like, it shouldn't be. It was terrible. Terrible. You do the math 90 years later now. 

So anyway, I'll pull out a couple of of pieces. Like I said, it's a 500 page book. I'm on page 16 so far, so I'm not going to go through everything with you. I don't do that anyway on these books, but gives you a snippet. You know, if you're an historian and you like reading these kind of things and you're squared away in business, you can get it. Lords of Finance, it's a good read. It takes a while, because I would look things up. I'm a bit of a history buff. I like looking up the people; watch some videos and whatnot. But only do that if you are, like I said, an historian, you need a break, get off the Interwebs and dig into this a bit. But otherwise, just understand the the angles here that we're talking about and the implications. And it can happen again, and it can happen in the United States. It can happen -- these advanced societies. 

And I think things are so crazy, they can be hidden for a good bit longer because there's so much at stake. But hey, Rome fell. You know, the sun now sets on the British Empire, and the U.S. can and will lose its dominance at one point. Talk about Russia and Russian bots and Russian meddling in their elections. China is the real threat. Those guys have a long vision. They have a long history. We're dealing in quarters and months; they're dealing in generations -- vastly different approach. So that's who we need to be keeping an eye on because these guys kind of skipped over it. 

But they thought war was impossible back then, even WWI, because of the tight tie -- like Lloyds of London was literally insuring some of the German warships, and they were saying that they would be honor-bound to pay insurance claims if they went to war and English submarines and English warships sank German warships. [chuckles. They're like, oh yeah, we're too closely tied in business; war is impossible. Yeah. How'd that work out? 

Now, is a shooting war impossible with us and China? You know, the argument can be made, the mutual assured destruction -- MAD. We all have nuclear weapons. We can destroy the Earth 10 or 20 or 30 times over. Are we really going to go toe to toe with them? Probably not. But cyber warfare is legit. Space warfare -- taking out each other's satellites, hurting our communication abilities, hitting our power grids, just making us suffer. And while we're suffering, trying to rebuild our infrastructure, they can make moves in Africa and South America, secure access to precious metals; could be things for nuclear weapons; it could be things for just business. There's unique minerals and whatnot that are needed for your iPhone, for medicine. 

We saw our exposure with COVID with so much of our medicine coming from India, who's even an ally, but still, hey, when when times are tough, you're going to circle the wagons. You're going to take care of your own. India's like, hey, we're not shipping your medicines. We figure this stuff out. I think we had to put some pressure on them, but now we're talking about rebuilding some things here back in America. So that's the kind of war, that's the kind of game that's being played right now at the global level. And again, you don't need to be an expert on this, but you need to be aware. Let some of the noise get filtered away and look deeper than some of these superficial arguments and pokes that the left and the right are thrown at each other. There's more to it than that. 

And hey, buy when there's blood in the street, even that blood is yours. You may have taken a hit this this year. Sorry, but hey, you're still up. You're still surviving, you're still swinging, you're still competing. So figure out where the next opportunity is and go after it hard. 

So I just found that segment, page 21 talking about the Lloyd's of London, whatnot. But back to the book. It says, it was no wonder that during a series of lectures on "The Great Illusion" delivered at Cambridge and the Sorbonne, Lord Esher would declare that, quote, "New economic factors clearly prove the inanity of war and that the commercial disaster, financial ruin and individual suffering of a European war would be so great as to make it unthinkable. Lord Esher and [Norman] Angell were right about the meager benefits and the high cost of war, but trusting too much in the rationality of nations and seduced by the extraordinary economic achievements of the era -- a period the French would later so evocatively call La Belle Epoque -- they totally misjudged the likelihood that a war involving all the major European powers would break out. So this was before WWI, and so now we're dealing with over 100 years ago and we have the same issues right now. It's just like I said; history does repeat itself, and even if it doesn't, it leaves clues and it certainly rhymes. 

So turning to the introduction of Montagu Norman, so you've got to realize 1914 England is the Global power. The world reserve currency is the British pound and they can do no wrong. Lloyds of London and London in general, the financial center of the world, and this guy is in charge of their Federal Reserve their bank. So this guy, they talk about his history, had been a sickly dude. He kind of found his bearing, if you will, in the Boer War, 1899. He joined the militia in 1894 and something -- he ends up going down to South Africa, big war; couple hundred thousand people. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order. So he blossomed in that environment, but he was still sick. 

Now, when he was on another venture, someone recommended that he meet with this Swiss psychiatrist, Dr. Carl Jung -- again, another expert. How much Jungian strategy, philosophy, science do people banter around even to this day? I mean, he was a smart man, of course. He ran all these tests on. Norman says that he's suffering from general paralysis of the insane, GPI, a term then used to describe the onset of mental illness associated with tertiary syphilis, and that he would be dead in a few months. 

So while some of the symptoms of GPI were in fact, similar to those associated with manic depression, this was an egregious misdiagnosis. But it profoundly shakes Norman. And they say for him, it was the beginning of a lifelong history of experimenting with esoteric religions and spiritual practices. So this guy is dabbling with everything and anything, dealing with spiritualism and whatever, while he's trying to wrap his brain around and in his heart and his energy and focus around these big financial Issues. That's why you see but by the time 1931 rolls around, he can't handle it and he bugs out. 

So the Clinton campaign tried to get us to believe back in 1992 that character didn't matter and they were lying manipulative sacks of dog poop, shall we say. Character does matter. Somebody's upbringing matters. Their faith, their religion; their lack thereof matters. You need to dig in when you're dealing with anything. Get to know the other person as much as you can that will shape your negotiations, your communication. It'll give you insight into their styles of communication, how they prefer to talk about things. Are they task-oriented, goal-oriented, people-oriented? Are they a Transactional buyer? Are they a relationship buyer? 

So understand, if you knew something -- if you they served in the military, they served in the war, they were awarded citations and medals, if you knew -- look them up on Facebook or wherever. Do they make posts about their faith or are they atheists? All that tells you something. 

You know, I had Jeffrey Gitomer and we talk about cold calling. He says he called him "gold calling," because there is no more cold calling, because you can look up Information, find background information on somebody, so it's not ever really a truly a cold call. You know something about them. But understanding how our so-called leaders, people of prominence, understanding their background and what has influenced them, will give you great insight as to what direction you think things are going in the economy and your business, in the marketplace, in your industry with your competitors. So pay attention to this stuff. 

So war is beginning. All these nations -- London has money all over the world -- talking about China, Denmark, Brazil, Romania, Stockholm, Montreal, Vancouver, Austria-- so they're all this money floating around, all these big loans, and everyone's worried, hey, if we start closing stock exchanges, if gold deposits are withdrawn out of fear, then it severely hampers the issuance of currency. I mean, everything comes to a grinding halt. 

So Montagu Norman, he shows up. He's seeing all this stuff going on. There was this kind of under-the-radar back-door dealings with France that Britain would would help them in case of a war but nobody really knew about it. But all of this was unfolding, Thursday, July 30th, 10:00 on Friday morning, a notice was posted on the door of the stock exchange announcing that it was to be closed until further notice for the first time since its founding in 1773 -- 141 years. So things are not good. Banks around the city began refusing to pay out gold sovereigns to customers; now there's a run on gold. Its billion reserves fell from over $130 million on Wednesday, July 29th, to less than $50 million on Saturday, August 1st. It forced the bank to raise their interest rates to an unprecedented 10 percent. 

You need to understand how this works. What does it mean if a nation has a strong currency. What does it mean if it has a weak currency? What does it mean? You know, if you have your money in savings, 10 percent sounds fantastic. But if there is stagflation, if there is stagnation, if there is deflation, people are getting laid off, what good is it to have money saved in the economy in ruins? So there's all these nuances and subtleties that go on. Like I mentioned earlier, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac talking about adding 50 or 60 basis points -- .5 percent, .6 percent -- .5 percent on a $400,000 loan, that's $2,000. So it may not seem like a lot, but people, they're funny, right? You see deals fall apart for $5. 

So what's going to happen to the real estate market with this? And again, things go up, crazy optimism and then a panic, then something breaks. You know, maybe now I think about it, maybe that's the break. Maybe we'll look back a week or two from now, a year from now and go, yeah, when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac made that announcement on Thursday, August 13th, 2020, that was the beginning of the end. We shall see. 

But they're raising their rates to 10 percent as Lloyd George, the chancellor of the Exchequer over in the Bank of England would later remark, "Financiers in a fright do not make a heroic picture." So look back at Enron and WorldCom and the dot-com implosion; look At Wells Fargo and all those crazy banks in '08, '09, 2010; Lehman Brothers. But also realize how much our politicians get from these financiers. You know, everybody wants to see President Trump's tax returns. I wouldn't mind seeing them. I don't care either way, but here you have a multibillionaire losing money to become president. But I'm concerned about these politicians, these congressmen and senators, they make, whatever, $125,000, $150,000, $170,000 a year and they leave as multimillionaires. What the hell's going on? 

That's the big money. What do you think lobbyists do? They hang out in the lobby. They corner these guys and gals. They take them to nice dinners. They give them stock tips. And in return, they get legislation passed that favors them. So you need to understand how big finance works. Looking back 106 years, some things just haven't changed, have they? 

All right. So you can't see this, but took a little break, got a beer; replied to a message in my Facebook inbox; launching a little program starting September 1st, small group to help people launch. If you've got an idea -- if you have 100 ideas -- but you're not able to monetize them if you want to test the waters, if you want to bring that to fruition and start getting paid, shoot a note to me before September 1st and I'll see if there's still openings. It's going to be super affordable. I'll let you make payments. And the idea is that you start making money before you finish paying. So the course literally costs you nothing because you're making money as you go. 

But I literally just took a break, confirmed somebody, boom, sent them the link, they paid -- no phone calls, no high pressure, no tactics, no gimmicks, nothing cheesy. So when you understand what's going on in the world, when you enter the conversation going on in the mind of the prospects, you can make money even in crazy economies like this, maybe especially in crazy economies like this. How well do you know people and how well do you know yourself? 

So looking back at the book, you've got the German Hjalmar Schacht. This guy has got a stick up his butt, but he will become known for his boundless ambition and ferocious will to succeed. Do you know some people like that? Do you know prospects like this? Do you know decision makers like this? Maybe the person with the title is kind of chill; put somebody under them, has this ambition and ferociousness, how do you leverage that? How do you negotiate with that person? How do you get them on your side? How do you isolate them if you need to? Lot of things you need to understand.

But this guy Schacht, he comes in and out of the bank. He ends up becoming buddy-buddy with Hitler and the Third Reich. He fostered a legit relationship with these guys over the years. But the dealings of war reparations after WWI, and I mean, the waters were so muddied. But people -- these guys understood one another and played one another against themselves, right or wrong. So a lot of things to to know going on. 

But Germany had really exploded, and I don't know, certainly the decade leading up to -- several decades leading up to the war, they were called an agrarian backwater at the edge of Western Europe to becoming its leading industrial power, overtaking even Britain. So they wanted to spread their wings. They were tired of being looked down upon, if you will. And so that happens in nations. It happens with individuals. You're seeing it maybe in politics right now. Are there groups, millennials -- "okay, Boomer" -- I mean, so many things this applies to. But when you understand the dynamics -- like Wayne Gretzky said, he skates to where the puck is going. Is China maybe how Germany was back then? Is India maybe? Obviously, Korea has made a name for itself; they've had made great strides in the last 20 and 30 years. What's Japan's role now, if any? Where's Russia? Are they are they falling back or are they sideways? They may be starting to make an uptick. 

So you can see -- pay attention to these things. It's going to give you insight onto where to focus, where to invest your money and your time. But absolutely, on an individual level, you cannot sell the same way to every person. How you would deal with Montagu Norman would be vastly different than how you deal with Schacht -- totally different -- but you still reach the same results. You can still close that sale. But far too few salespeople understand that. They go in, treat everybody the same, give the same presentation, the same order, and it actually works with 25 to maybe 35 percent of your prospects. With a little bit of effort maybe you'll close another 10 or 15 percent. But the rest of those prospects, who are valid prospects are dead to you, because you want to treat everybody the same. 

And look, your prospects will say things and do things and convey things that give away their thoughts, their strategies if you pay attention. It talks about here in the book, 1911, there was the Agadir crisis of 1911. So Germany decided delivery deliberately decided to provoke a confrontation with France over Morocco and they were hit with a big financial crisis. Stock market plunged by 30 percent in a single day, run on the banks, blah-blah-blah probably lost a fifth of its gold reserves in the space of a month. So they were determined that it would never again allow itself to be financially blackmailed. 

So they built up their gold reserves, the Reichsbank itself increasing its holdings from $200 million to $500 million in 1914. Meanwhile, the Bank of England held only some $200 million. So when you look at what people are doing, what countries are doing, what banks are doing, what your opponent is doing, what your prospects are doing, it gives you clues. But are you looking for them and do you believe them? You can wish upon a star; doesn't make things happen the way you want. You need to observe, make a decision, and then act on that decision. 

Too many people in Europe at that time, 1914, were just ignoring all the signs that were sitting there for them. What signs are you ignoring right now? Your bank account, your savings account, your investments, your business? Do you need to hire somebody? Do you need to fire somebody? Do you need to cut expenses? Whatever. Rip the Band-Aid off. If you're losing sleep, whatever -- if you wake up at 2:00 in the morning, 3:00 in the morning, can't go back to sleep, go tackle whatever that is, right then, right there, and I guarantee you you'll have your best night sleep since that issue popped up, and it's probably been a while.

Now moving into New York and the United States and Benjamin Strong as the head -- so they give a little bit of background, the 1907 crash, 1895 crash; talking about how JPMorgan stepped up back then and literally saved the United States Government with injecting some cash But there's the issue going on in Europe; England, the London Stock Exchange is closed; July 28th, July 30th, there's panics, things are dropping. The Dow is dropping 7 percent, dropped 3 points before that. So, like, all right, what do we do? And the ol' good old boys club gets together. First, it was just eight men; later just five. The Aldrich plan -- they meet in secrecy, they go out to this island off the Carolinas, I think; they spend Thanksgiving together, sworn to secrecy, and they come back with This plan. 

So basically five guys -- and Benjamin Strong, he wasn't even really that well-to-do. It wasn't a college graduate. He didn't come from the aristocracy. But on October 5th, 1914, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York formally announced that Benjamin Strong had been elected its first governor. I think it was Woodrow Wilson signed this up, but five guys -- yeah, Federal Reserve Bank by Woodrow Wilson, Dec. 23rd, 1913. 

So, look, this is happening now to a greater or lesser degree. Bill Gates, Warren Buffett. I mean, guys like this have a lot of power. And I'm not saying what these guys did was bad. I'm just saying pay attention. Strong, powerful, influential people like to wield that power and influence. Hopefully it's for good; it could be for bad. But pay attention. See what people are doing. George Soros; Tim Cook at Apple -- I mean, whatever. There's big powerful people. Are some of them going down? Weinstein, Epstein -- there's some big names. You know, heads are rolling. Does that scare others? I don't know. But nothing happens -- nothing's an accident and nothing happens in a vacuum. So pay attention. That's why -- again, that's why I like things like this. Everything's interconnected, The clues are there. You just got to look for them. 

Now, let's take a look at France. So Émile Moreau, when WWI kicks off, 1914, he was heading up a backwater bank, as they called it. He was the director general of the Banque d'Algérie et Tunisie. So basically was the central bank for the French colonies of Algeria and Tunisia. But they were paying attention to a sordid affair that was going on in the courts. It was being tried -- l'affaire Caillaux. So these guys -- several of the leaders were always in trouble, either sexual affairs or monetary improprieties, and it gets you distracted. Once again, character matters. What are these people focusing on? Are they focusing on running the country or are they focusing on running the central bank or are they focusing on lining their own pockets or getting in the pants of someone else? And we're limited in our abilities. We need time and energy to focus. 

And anyway, so there was the finance minister and leader of the Radical Party was Joseph Caillaux, and he wanted -- he launched a campaign against -- I'm sorry. So the Le Figaro was a conservative newspaper. They had launched a campaign against the introduction of an income tax that Joseph Caillaux had recommended. So the paper's going after him and they're just skewering the guy. So he had a mistress, the already married Berthe Gueydan. She eventually divorced her husband, became the first Mrs. Caillaux. So he married her and then he had another affair with the tall, ash-blond Henriette Claretie; divorced Berthe and married his new mistress. So now the second Mrs. Caillaux, she's upset everything going on in the news, and she also worried that her own bad press would make its way out and about. 

So on March 16th, gets all dressed up, going to a reception at the Italian embassy, stops by a gun store, walks into the offices of Le Figaro, waited an hour for Gaston Calmette, the editor and confronted him, declared, "You know why I have come," and calmly pumped six shots into him at point-blank range from the pistol that was hidden in her expensive fur muffs, killing him instantly. So it split France; even provoked riots in Paris between supporters of Caillaux and right wing agitators. Sound familiar? Sound like Minneapolis? Sound like dozens of -- Seattle, Portland? So it's crazy. I mean, history is repeating itself. 

So the trial begins on July 20th. Hey, Trump was being impeached while COVID was Kicking in. Was our nation distracted? Clearly, our nation was distracted. Could they have done anything differently about COVID? That's always will be up for debate. But clearly, when you're distracted, you're not doing as much as you can. 

So this is going on. Now, the reason this applies to Moreau, who would eventually become the head of the Federal Reserve, the federal banking for France leading into WWII and all the changes and regulations and relationships that they made because he was -- this guy Caillaux was basically a mentor of Moreau. So he likes the guy. He helped him grow in his business, in his career. So he's an loyal guy. And then you've got this other guy that eventually became the prime minister. He was in and out, Rouvier; he's exiled and he's brought back and he's reelected and he's exiled again, blah, blah, blah -- but Moreau, he was loyal. He liked these guys. 

And everybody, good and bad, despite the bad things they may do, they still have some good attributes, so he chose to see the good. But all of this is going on, but he's rising up pretty well. So even though he was in this job that he he didn't really like, he leaned into it. He was awarded this Commandeur de la Légion d'Honneur -- the Legion of Honor, a distinction restricted to no more than 1250 people. So he did great work in this small job, which would help him in the future. 

So right now you may be working on something  --you may have had to pivot. You may be in something you didn't want to do, something you didn't think you'd be doing, just like me. Six months after leaving the Air Force, resigning my commission, I had a house, three bedroom, two bath house on the back bay of Biloxi, on the number 10 tee box, four houses from the clubhouse. I had a, I don't know, three- or four-minute drive into the office. We had every other Friday off. All of my electricity and water and sewer, trash, everything was paid; health care was paid. Had it nice -- never locked the door. I turned all that down to go become a stockbroker. 

Six months later, I'm unemployed. I was on unemployment when my second son was born; ended up applying to a classified ad to sell mobile homes in Mobile, Alabama. And then in so late April, early May of '98 to May of '99, I made exactly $100,000. In today's dollars, that's like $145,000, $148,00 my first year. We were living in a in a two bedroom apartment upstairs. Our rent was like $345 a month. So imagine that, right? 

And that has paid -- I literally gave a webinar last week telling that story, sharing the lessons learned, how I've still applied those lessons to this very day. So I promise you, you'll look back months from now, years from now, decades from now on what's happening to you right now, today, and you'll see the good things that the current struggles may be bringing you. You're learning something good right now. God is putting this in your path for a reason. He's preparing you for something else, for something bigger. You've survived every other challenge that has come your way. You'll get through this. You'll get through it better if you do it with a good attitude. 

So Moreau does this. Now, some people got jealous. They say maybe rose too far, too fast, but perhaps it was that he was different from the others -- a man of few words, blunt and almost rude, who had made no attempt to enter Salon society and had none of the airs and graces of the Parisian higher civil servant. So very much a provincial; he proudly went out of his way to remain so. 

And look, I get it. I don't like politics and the games but I don't go out of my way to be rude. When I do have to go somewhere, my wife knows. I'll clean up. I clean up with the best of them. I can make the small talk. I try to make my rounds, see different people, play some polite thing, some jokes, listen a little bit and and try to just drift. I call it ghosting; just drift out of there. But I will make a showing. 

So how you are perceived matters. You can choose how you want to play the game. You can just be yourself and just fight through it, Fine. There's pros and cons to that. You want to kiss a little butt, hey, fine; there's pros and cons to that. But just to understand, he had built up some some resentment, some people going against him, but he was also known as being loyal, so just take that for what it is. 

So as the eight days of court proceedings are happening the night of July 28th, so war Is breaking out already with Germany, Austria, Serbia. So things are already happening. But people are watching -- we don't have the Internet back then; they got to wait. And they're all caught up in this scandal -- oh, and she's acquitted, by the way; passion of the heart, basically. But as all that's happening, people are figuring out, oh, man, there's fighting going on in Paris because of that, but now people are worried about banking. 

As it says, most Parisian were now more concerned about how to pay for their groceries. Gold or silver coins were hard to come by. The shops, even the cafés, had stopped accepting banknotes and even the food markets at the houses had come to a grinding halt. Sounds like our lockdowns during COVID. Some are still going on. People are showing up at the bank, they want to convert their notes into gold and the banks like, oh hell no, we don't want that. We got to hold on the gold. 

The line swelled up to more than 30,000 people, went for over a mile. The French were thrifty, it said, but they were actually very calm going through this. But all the classes mean gold. They just -- the bank announced they were prepared. They had the largest single hoard of gold in the world they had built up because they wanted what they called a war of revenge against Germany to reverse the disaster of 1870; by July 1914, had over $800 million in bullion. 

But they had been invaded, what'd it say, several times in the last 100 years, so they had a plan to get the gold out in case they were invaded, and that was issued. So within 24 hours, public services came to a grinding halt as every able-bodied male headed for the railway stations, even the grandest hotels to the Ritz and the Creon lost their waiters. Dinner was served by chambermaids. Within days of the outbreak of war and for the next few weeks, an unnatural calm settled over the city as it basked gloriously in the August sunshine. 

The grand department stores, for which Paris was famous, were deserted, just like New York right now. Big retail chains are closing out. They say they're leaving Manhattan. Sounds familiar. There was no traffic -- sounds familiar. The busses had disappeared to the front and the metro ran only sporadically. Sounds familiar. Theaters and cinemas were closed. Sounds familiar. The cafe shut at 8:00 p.m. Sounds familiar. The restaurants at 9:30 p.m. -- sounds familiar. Before the month was out with all the foreigners gone, the big hotels lay empty -- sounds familiar. 

So they talk about the emergency plans. They got the gold out, what was it, 38,800 gold ingots, innumerable bags of coins valued at $800 million, weighing some 1,300 tons had been shipped in the utmost secrecy by rail. By early September, the banks' vaults in Paris were empty. Now we're not empty, thank goodness. But again, what the hell is going on? You know, it's a good book, historical book, a lot of details, a lot of facts, probably beyond what you need to know. And heck, I'm only in the first few dozen pages here, but I'll wrap it up. 

I hope you've got some pointers out of that and I want to leave you with several things, as I mentioned. Personality matters. Your approach matters. Foresight matters. Looking at past clues, picking up those hints, and seeing how they apply -- yep, today is not different. "Oh, this time is different, but my business is different." It's not. It's not. Learn from the past. Leverage other people's energy and experiences, leverage other people's money; leverage other people's time; don't make the same mistakes they made. 

Find the movers and shakers and see what they're doing, get on their good side, and then become that mover and shaker. But then don't think you have all the answers. The old apocryphal story of Henry Ford. He's being accused of being not too bright; and they're asking him, well, how is this made, how's that made in the engine, the transmission, this, that, and the other. He's like, I don't know. See, you're a fraud. He's like, boom, you want to know transmissions, I hit this button. The smartest man on transmissions in the world would be at my desk in one minute. Upholstery, whatever, boom, boom, boom. So he had access to those smart people. 

I really believe, too, that's the difference. When you look at Republicans and Democrats they want to beat up on old Ronald Reagan, the great communicator. You know, it wasn't that bright. Well, look at Jimmy Carter. He was a Naval Academy grad, a Navy nuke, supersmart. Nobody ever said Jimmy Carter was not smart. Barack Obama, super smart, intelligent; Bill Clinton, Rhodes Scholar, super smart, intelligent; good old George W. Bush, golly. He had an MBA, though. I mean, wasn't a dummy but nobody's saying he's a genius. Trump, they beat him up. George H.W. -- Herbert Walker -- Bush, he was smart enough, but he's not known as being a scholar. 

But seems like the Republican presidents are fine with not being the smartest one in the room necessarily. They surround themselves with good people. Democrats seem like they want the President to be the smartest one in the room and look to him for all the answers. And obviously, they do surround themselves with good people. But it's just a stylistic approach. It's a preference. And, hey, I have no problem being the boss, calling the shots. But I have no problem saying where I'm weak in an area where I don't know. 

But great leaders can take a little bit of information and make a decision. And when you're faced with tough times, when you're faced with unique circumstances, hopefully you've prepared. You've taken these stories, let them percolate in the back of your mind for years. So your subconscious can build on that and build the connections. So when push comes to shove, you can make the right decision. So figure out how do you want to lead. How do you lead your company? How you lead your sales team? How do you lead yourself? How you lead your family? And if lessons from this book, from how they prepared for the war, if they can help, then, hey, amen. Then I done did a good thing. 

As I mentioned on earlier, starting a little small group to help you make a decision. I think too many people fail because they fail to launch. They fail to choose and commit to a path and go down it. And so this program is going to be short and intensive. You're going to -- the goal for you to make your money back in September. And it's not a lot of money, but it's for you to launch an idea and monetize it. If you're a salesperson, you got maybe a side hustle or an idea. This is really good for that. 

And even if you have something going but maybe you've got a project that you've put on the back burner and you're ready to kick it off, that's what it's built for. So it's not just pure sales training. It's not necessarily, you got a $5 or $10 or $30 million business, and so it's not for you if that's your situation. 

But if you are looking to grow -- launch and monetize an idea fast, that's what it's for. It's going to be limited to 20 people and will probably be half that. So if you're interested, go to TheSalesWhisperer.com, hit the contact us, and I'll send you the details. It's a Word document; I'll copy and paste it and send it to you. 

And I'm doing that for a reason As well, because the people have signed up, I do this through Facebook. I've got a good following, and so I practice what I preach. But if you're listening to this and you're interested, you can go to my Facebook page or find my profile, find me on LinkedIn, however you want to connect, and say you're interested in the September program and I'll get you the details. 

Okay. Thanks for listening. Now go sell something.