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If you are new to this series, please read the introduction.


Despise the Free Lunch

What is offered for free is dangerous – it usually involves either a trick or a hidden obligation. What has worth is worth paying for. By paying your own way you stay clear of gratitude, guilt, and deceit. It is also often wise to pay the full price – there is no cutting corners with excellence. Be lavish with your money and keep it circulating, for generosity is a sign and a magnet for power.

Money and Power

In the realm of power, everything must be judged by its cost and everything has a price. What is offered for free or at bargain rates, often comes at a higher psychological price, such as, complicated feelings of obligation, compromises with quality

A miser, to make sure of his property, sold all that he had and converted it all into a great lump of gold, which he hid in a whole in the earth, and went, continually, to visit and inspct it. This roused the curiosity of one of his workmen, who, suspecting that there was a treasure, when his master's back was turned, went to the spot and stole it. When the master found the place empty, he wept and tore his hair. But, a neighbor, who saw him in this extreme grief, and learned the cause of it, said: "Fret no longer, but take a stone and put it in the same place and think that it is your lump of gold, for, as you never meant to lose it, the one will do you as much good as the other."
The worth of money is not in its possession but in its use.

Being open and flexible with money also teaches the value of strategic generosity, a variation on the method of "giving before you take." By giving the appropriate gift, you put the recipient under obligation. Generosity softens people up. By gaining a reputation for generosity, you win people's admiration, while distracting them from your power plays.

Foe everyone able to play with money, thousands more are locked in a self-destructive refusal to use money creatively and strategically. These types represent the opposite of the powerful and you must learn to rcognize them - either to avoid their poisonous natures or to turn their inflexibility to your advantage:

The Greedy Fish

The greedy fish takes the human side out of money. Cold and ruthless, they see only the lifeless balance sheet; viewing others as either pawns or obstructions in their pursuit of wealth, they trample on other people's sentiments and alienate valuable allies. No one wants to work with the greedy fish and over the years isolation proves their undoing. They are also easy to deceive: simply lure them with the bait of easy money and they will swallow the lure, hook, ine and sinker. Either avoid them before they explot you, or play on their grred.

The Bargain Demon

Powerful people judge everything by what it costs, not only in money but in time, dignity and peace of mind. This is exactly what Bargain Demons can not do. Wasting valuable time digging for bargains, they worry endlessly about wwhat they could have gotten elsewhere for a little less. In addition, the bargain item they do buy it often inferior quality and needing repairs, or needing to be replaced often. These types may seem to harm only themselves but their attitudes are contagious.

Tjhere is a popular saying in Japan, "Tada yori takai mono wa nai," meaning "Nothing is more costly than something given free of charge."

The Sadist

Financial sadists play vicious power games with money, as a way of asserting their power. For example, they may force you to wait for payment, promising the check is in the mail. Sadists tend to think that paying for something gives them the right to abuse the seller. They have no sense of the courtier element of money. If you, unfortunately, get involved with this type, accepting a financial loss may be better than getting entangled in their destructive power games.

Imagine the river. To protect yourself or to save the resource, you dam it up. Soon, however, the waters become dark and pestilent. Only the foulest forms of life can live in such stagnant water. Nothing travels, all commerce ceases. When water flows and circulates, it generates abundance, wealth and power. The river must flood periodically to renew good things.

The Indiscrinate Giver

Generosity has a definite function in power: it attracts people, makes them allies. But, it must be used strategically, with a definite end in mind. The Indiscrinate Giver, on the other hand, are generous because tyhey need to be loved and admired. And, their generosity is so needy that it may not have the desired reffect: if they give to one and all, why should the receiver feel special? Attractive as it may seem to be the recipient of the Indiscrinate Giver, any involvement with this type will often burden you with their insatiable emotional needs.

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