Tutor, buck naked carrying a lamp in broad daylight up one street (Wealth) and down the cross street (Bondage) has gone in search of True Riches. He asked 215 Wealth Advisors, all of whom have differentiated their practice into Wisdom Consulting, and amazingly he got the same answer, as if all had read the same book uncritically. He learned there are five Riches of wealthy families, whether Russian Oligarchs, Mafiosi, South American Expropriators of Public Goods, Swindlers, War Lords, Drug Lords, Hedge Fund Managers, Courtesans, Casino Operators, Bankers, or a President and Family. These riches are (drumroll) Financial, Intellectual, Social, Spiritual and Political. Actually the five flex, give or take a few, so each Wealth Advisor has some ability to customize to demonstrate his or her own sagacity. The main thing is that the fifth, corresponding to the thumb (the one Jack stuck in the pie to pull out a plum) is spiritual, or aesthetic, if you prefer. God, or good taste, or bad taste, take your pick. That is the foundation of them all.
But what Tutor wants to know is something different. What he wants to know is, What is Bankruptcy? What is the Balance Sheet for a high ranking family, properly considered? We can ask clients to estimate their assets - are they sort of Moral, Moral Medium, or Bigly Moral? But, equally important, but harder to assess, against such assets what are the offsetting liabilities? And at what point is the total a negative? Against Virtues, for example, we have vices. Against Assets, Debts. Sin is a debt that left unpaid is visited down to the tenth generation in a dynastic family. And the negatives pollute one another. Spirituality curdles into hypocrisy if left out too long, before the cat licks it up. Political capital becomes graft if ethics sour. Intellectual capital becomes the forcing of facts, if ethics and spirit clot. Of the Forbes 100, how many are net, net, morally, culturally, socially and/or politically bankrupt? And who is working with each family member, (perhaps at the expense of the general public, since such families affect the public interest) to relieve the liabilities, given the harm they can do in reducing the family ultimately to penury, and worse, the damage they can do in the meantime to the body politic, the commonwealth, the public good? We Wealth Advisors protect our Families of Wealth with body guards, whether hired by the client or provided at public expense for public servants, but who will protect the family's integrity? I believe body guards are an important part of it, if you look at the Latin American or Russian best practices. And you can understand why walls, guards, razor wire, and bullet proof cars are needed. But are they enough? Who in these gilded towers are mentoring the youth who will inherit the earth?
When Tutor returned from his ill-conceived quest for just one Ultra High Net Worth Family in the Black, all he had was one Mexican Maid, unmarried, and undocumented, but a good Christian. In all those households only she, according to whatever crackpot methodology Tutor used, netted to a positive. But, she is dark haired, lovely, with two significant assets you can't miss, and those may have skewed Tutor's good judgment. I am beginning to think that Wisdom Consulting to Dynastic Wealth is a scam. Which is not a bad thing it if gets results, and nets to a positive, when all five capitals are added up, balanced, and tweaked for various facts, real and fictional. And moral bankruptcy, of Trusted Advisor or Ideal Client, is easily discharged. All you need is a Confessor, and that is where I come in. I borrow Tutor's Priest Pants, his clerical collar, and Hawaiian Shirt, and off we go to some dark corner in the alley. If I were a real priest, it would be simony, and a sacrilege, but as it is let's consider it a satire upon the Vanity of Human Wishes. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves, in the world's wealthiest and best connected families, among lives now in being, pray to God! We will see the grandchildren of Princes, Kings, Lords and Despots, begging in the barren street, friends among friends, no better and no worse than the likes of me or Tutor. It is the Cycle of Life. Fortune forever turns her Wheel, no less than the Seasons turn. Fate, Destiny, Providence, Karma, none can avoid what they've got coming. And may it be a lesson to them, that having claimed Wisdom, they get it in the end. The whole nine yards.