Wall Street WARZONE
Avatar-2154: The Next “Big Short” is The New Planet “Eaarth” … Here are 12 Ways to Invest on a Planet That’s Getting “Hotter, Flatter, Crowded” … and Dying!
by Paul B Farrell, JD, PhD
| Discuss | | 9/1/2010

Imagine a secret society, code name “Avatar-2154,” based on the date of the “War of 2154” between the Sec-Ops armies from Earth, funded by the Resources Development Corporation (RDA), against the Na’vi indigenous tribes on the Pandora moon. The war is over mining rights to Pandora’s unobtanium, a powerful new energy source needed back on “Eaarth,” to save our planet, where rapid population growth is exhausting limited natural resources, resulting in a dying civilization. Obviously this is a metaphor for today’s global threats.

The goals of “Avatar-2154:” Maximum security and wealth preservation for future generations of members from the elite of Wall Street, Washington, Corporate America CEOs, the Forbes-400. “Avatar-2154” secretly supports climate-change-deniers in think tanks, academic research and politicians who negate the impact of scientific facts. This effort is necessary when high-profile voices like Al Gore and Bill McKibben surface and new propaganda is required to attack their efforts stirring global climate initiatives.

For example, Bill McKibben, an environmental economist, recently published Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet. Tough? Worse. Earth is dead. And McKibben’s vision for the new “Eaarth” we created is bleak. No upbeat high-tech hope for a “green revolution” as in Tom Friedman’s Hot, Flat & Crowded. Remember, two decades ago McKibben’s The End of Nature was one of the first books warning of global warming, climate change, a dying planet. His new “Eaarth” a funeral dirge. In Foreign Policy magazine last year, McKibben summarized his relentless message:

“Act now, we’re told, if we want to save the planet from a climate catastrophe. Trouble is, it might be too late. The science is settled, and the damage has already begun. The only question now is whether we will stop playing political games and embrace the few imperfect options we have left.” Stop the the political games? Never. Remember Kyoto and Copenhagen defeats? Recent coal mine disasters? The BP-Gulf oil catastrophe? And when the long-awaited 1,000-page Kerry-Leiberman Climate Bill finally surfaced last week, it was quickly blasted as “DOA,” a “gift to polluters.” Politicians love games.

In the end, “Eaarth itself will force us to bend to new rules”
The truth is, politicians will never stop in time. Consequently, “Avatar-2154” members need to be fully aware that “we have waited too long,” the planet really is dying, “Eaarth” is on an irreversible self-destruct path. Washington will not “stop playing political games.” They cannot: There are too many “special interests” fighting for their “fair” share of the federal government’s $1.7 trillion budget jackpot … too many stockholders in publicly-traded corporations demanding bull market returns and perpetual economic growth … and too many lobbyists who make enormous short-term payoffs by ignoring the long-term warnings of McKibben, Gore and others in the new “Green Revolution.” (More)

Zen-Millionaire’s 14 Secrets to Happiness, Health & Wealth! Yes, You Can Still Get Rich in Spirit & in Fact!
by Paul B Farrell, JD, PhD
| Discuss | | 6/6/2010

Every now and then a reader sends an email with a headline that catches me by surprise, like this one: “Time for some Enlightenment.” Ted was a nudger: “Some time ago you wrote a piece on ‘peace of mind’ and being happy. The point being that happiness is a state of mind, not a state of material wants and possessions.” Then his magic words: “It might be time to remind your readers of that.” I sat sipping from a coffee mug emblazoned with “Happy Everything” and decorated with kids in bright costumes celebrating Valentine’s Day, Easter and the 4th of July, Halloween and Christmas. All those happy kids were smiling at me … so upbeat, so positive, so optimistic. With every sip out of that cup, Ted’s suggestion “felt” more “right.” The spirit of the moment resulted in the “Zen-Millionaire’s 14 Secrets of Happiness.” And a few weeks later, the same energy sparked a column that accurately called ”A Bottom & New Bull Market,” which was at the leading edge of a 50% upturn in the market through the rest of 2009. 

So let’s take a few moments, read the “14 Secrets” below, then finish this simple sentence: “I’m the happiest (and richest) investor because …” Impossible? Can’t each one of us all be “the richest,” as well as “the happiest.” This is your life. And yes, each of us in our own unique way can be “the happiest and also the richest” … in your special way, in your world, all by yourself. You decide. Just do it.

Okay, now think about what really, really makes you happy and write: “Yes, I really am the happiest (and richest) investor in the world because …” Here are a few reminders, my “Zen-Millionaire’s 14 Secrets to being Happy, Healthy and Rich.” Maybe they’ll jar your memory, maybe bring a smile, maybe help you see that at this one moment in time, in your own unique way, you really are the happiest, richest and luckiest investor living in the whole wide world:

1. Happiness is making others happy.
Like family: My wife loves Mary Engelbrecht’s calendars. We have several around the house. My perennial favorite’s a jolly, happy, bright-colored Santa strolling along with a huge bag of gifts and a cute dog. The caption from Oscar Wilde: “Some cause happiness wherever they go.” And there’s lots of pages from Mary’s smaller calendars tacked on our frig with magnets … they all “cause happiness” with a smile.

2. Happiness is doing what you love (even if you’re not doing it).
“Success is getting what you want,” says Uncle Warren, the Sage of Omaha. “Happiness is wanting what you get.” And to University of Nebraska students he admitted: “If there is any difference between you and me, it may simply be that I get up every day and have a chance to do what I love to do, every day … I get to do what I like to do every single day of the year,” says Buffett. “I tap dance to work, and when I get there, I think I’m supposed to lie on my back and paint the ceiling. It’s tremendous fun,” moreover he’d do it even if he had “$40 instead of his $40 billion.”

3. Happiness is some cheerios and a warm puppy.
For Peanuts’ creator Charles Schultz, it’s very simple: “Happiness is a warm puppy.” And pure joy in Anna Quindlen’s A Short Guide to A Happy Life: “Get a life in which you pay attention to the baby as she scowls with concentration when she tries to pick up a Cherrio with her thumb and first finger. Turn off the cell phone. Turn off your regular phone, for that matter. Keep still. Be present. Get a life in which you are not alone. Find people you love, and who love you.” God bless Snoopy and cheery Cheerios! 

4. Happiness is getting lost in whatever you’re doing.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi looks more like Mary’s jolly St Nick than a psych prof. In Seligman’s Authentic Happiness, Mihaly says: “Isn’t it funny?—I’ve been studying happiness for at least forty years, but I still don’t have a definition of it. The closest one would be that happiness is the state of mind in which one does not desire to be in any other state. Being deeply involved in the moment, we do not have the opportunity to think about anything but the task at hand—hence, by default, we are happy.”  (More)

You Don’t Wannabe a “Millionaire?” You’re Still in the Warzone! Join Our New “Network”
by Paul B Farrell, JD, PhD
| Discuss | | 4/21/2010

Want to retire a millionaire? Try the legendary management guru Peter Drucker’s solution: “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” And the same approach to living well works if you don’t have a million bucks … if you just want to be content and happy … if you don’t really don’t care about being a millionaire! You don’t need a million bucks to be happy … and you also don’t need a million to live like a millionaire. Why? There are more important things in life. Here’s why.

The big secret: Studies show most folks really don’t care about being millionaires! They know there are more important things in life. That’s what you’ll hear from a lot of sources. Not just spiritual folks like the Dalai Lama, but also Ralph Warner’s Get a Life: You Don’t Need a Million to Retire Well, and the “happiness” psychologists, like University of Pennsylvania Professor Martin Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness and Learned Optimism. These researchers have been studying what makes people happy for a long time and come to one central conclusion: It’s not money. In fact, that conclusion applies throughout history, and across cultures and continents. (More)