Sunday, February 04, 2007
Dave Ramsey: Total Money Makeover (Revised)
I have just started reading the Revised and Updated version of Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover. I don't agree with everything he says (probably 80%), but I am certain I will not be as harsh as I was with Donald Trump and Robert Kiyosaki's book earlier here and here.
I have criticized Dave Ramsey before. But I admit that the concept "neither a borrower nor lender be" has been around for quite a while. My main complaint is that it is just as important to speak out on behalf of the working class who are not able to pay those debts and save for retirement due to unfair practices by their employers. When a corporate employer pays the executives so highly and tells their employees to buy the company stock while they themselves are dumping it, it's not right to blame the victim. It's kind of hard to save if someone is effectively stealing from you.
Anyway, over the next few weeks I will be doing some book reviews / critiques of Dave Ramsey's book. Overall, let me just say that his advise is good 80% of the time. It is important to live frugally and save; but it is just as important to do Social Justice and utilize government and the courts to protect those who have less bargaining power and have fewer "life assets" (less intelligence, education, access to information, income and the like). Just because a person is gullible and can be taken advantage of doesn't mean that we should let the con artist get away with it. The intent to commit a fraud and carrying out the fraud on a gullible person is still wrong. I know it is not unusual in these types of situations to "blame the victim." But they are still victims, nonetheless.
I guess the point I am trying to make is: educate the working class as to the dangers of debt vs. the principle of delayed gratification; but at the same time, work to pass laws to prevent intelligent, educated people who understand how excessive usury and fees work from taking advantage of those uneducated consumers. Make noblesse oblige more or less a legal obligation. If they do take advantage of consumers, allow the courts to correct the problem by making their torts or crimes unprofitable.