My StoryMy Dad Was a ValedictorianMy father came from a family of six children.Three of the six were valedictorians and my dad was one of them.The remaining sibling earned only a Bachelor’s degree.My dad was probably an academic genius.He read and just studied voraciously and graduated with his Bachelor’s degree in two years from the University of Hawaii.Although he worked full time and raised a family, he also found time to attend advanced courses at Stanford University, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern.At the same time, he was recognized as one of the two top educators in the history of Hawaii.He lost his job at the age of 53 and was not prepared to do anything else.Cashing in his retirement fund and savings, he purchased a brandname national ice cream franchise.His business venture soon went bust.I returned from Vietnam in 1973 to find my dad, a very good man, sitting at home looking through the newspaper’s want ads for a job.According to the Cone of Learning, my father attempted to ’do the real thing’ at the top of the cone and lost everything.My dad did well in school as an ’A’ student.He did well as a bureaucrat in the government.Unfortunately, when it came to money, business, and investing, he missed learning in all three learning windows.He could not survive in the cut throat world of the B and I quadrants.Success in one quadrant does not ensure success in another.In my father’s case, being a valedictorian helped him in the E quadrant as a government bureaucrat, but his good grades were of no help in the B and I quadrants.This supports the findings of the Boston University and the Harvard University studies.That is why most valedictorians remain in the E and S quadrants, while college dropouts such as Jobs, Gates, and Zuckerberg and hundreds of others find and develop their genius in the B and I quadrants.But most ’A’ students do not know how to turn 2 + 2 into four dollars or millions more.To a capitalist, that kind of math is worth studying.’A Final WordMost valedictorians succeed if they play it safe inside the E or S quadrants.Success in one quadrant does not guarantee success in others.The earlier a parent teaches their child about the different quadrants, the earlier their child can begin preparing for life.Action Step for ParentsDiscuss your child’s dreams and the different ways success is defined outside of the school system.I believe that a child’s genius is found in their dreams.And this is a time to encourage and support the thought that their future is theirs to create.Use the Cone of Learning as a guide for discussion.Explain to your child why reading is not always the best way to learn.You may want to take your child to a watch a sports team at practice.Why Rich People Go BrokeThe first step in making changes in our lives starts with a change, a shift in context, change in the way we look at things and the filters we use to process information and experiences.We often see the imagery of a caterpillar changing into a butterfly used to illustrate change.It’s a good visual because change is a process, and what we become in the process is as important and powerful as how we emerge.This means new challenges, and opportunities, all the time.Preparing a child for the world of tomorrow is one of the most important roles a parent plays in a child’s life.And it can be a daunting one.Making the CaseOver 2,000 years ago, Greece was the most powerful empire on earth.The Greeks also gave us the concept of ’trial by jury’ and, in theater, the tragedy.Today the spectacular country of Greece is on life support, the basket case of Europe, a modern day Greek tragedy.A Greek TragedyOn the world stage, Japan, England, France, and the United States also play roles in this Greek drama.If other powerful nations crash, it will be a global tragedy.Men and women of my generation feel as if they too have bit parts in this, their personal Greek tragedies.The Rise of DespotsIf this global financial crisis is not solved, the final act will not be pretty.During times of financial crisis, a new type of leader often emerges, leaders known as despots.A few of these leaders are infamous.It seems ironic that the word despot is a French word derived from the Greek word despotes.I am often severely criticized for doing this.He is one of our most beloved presidents.Hitler’s solution was to go to war.The Social Security Act of 1935 is America’s most beloved government program.Roosevelt simply ’kicked the can down the road’ pushing the problem to future leaders.Today Social Security and Medicare are huge elephants sitting in the room.The same is true in Greece, England, Japan, and other countries of the world.The problem is, the can cannot be kicked much farther.Does this mean the rise of a new despot?My generation, the baby boomers, claim they deserve their Social Security and Medicare benefits.They contributed to the social programs.The problem is, all government social programs are Ponzi schemes.A Ponzi scheme is a swindle where the older investors are paid back from new investor money.Most of us have heard of Bernie Madoff, the heavy weight champion in the arena of private Ponzi schemes.Social welfare is destroying the soul of America.Social programs are cancers growing within the spirit of the people they were created to serve.Social programs do not make people stronger.They keep people weak, depending on the government to solve their problems.I realize there are people who may deserve government programs.Some people are truly in need.The problem is, millions of ablebodied Americans are also on government welfare.The President and Congress receive government ’welfare’ checks that would make even Bernie Madoff blush.The government bread line includes our military retirees, government employees, public servants such as the police and fire fighters, and teachers.