Let’s just start right at the top:
Being politically correct means saying what’s polite rather than what’s accurate. I like to be accurate.
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Actually, being politically correct is saying what’s accurate in a way that doesn’t unnecessarily offend people. Maybe some people “need to be offended” sometimes, but I take a more positive view of the human psyche. In any case “being politically incorrect” is the new “being politically correct.” Everyone wants to do it.
Kiyosaki talks for a while about taking responsibility for your own situation. Oh, if only life were that simple. It’s not. Your environment has a lot to say about who you are. Kiyosaki proves he’s not politically correct by making an example of fat people.
Kiyosaki wants obese people to admit that they’re fat only because of their own doing. That may be true for some people, but people who grew up in a household culture that was based around sugar and therefore obesity have more to blame than just their own actions and decisions. There comes a point when one can start making their own decisions, but it’s more than an issue of will power. You’re dealing with chemicals within your body that are working against you, thanks to the way you were brought up.
Bob does have one intelligent thing to say:
One of the biggest lies businesspeople tell is that it’s hard to find good employees. In other words, they lie about their lousy leadership skills by blaming their employees for being bad workers.
Okay, sure. So lousy leadership skills result in bad workmanship, and leaders shouldn’t pass blame onto their employees. What about the reverse? If “human logic” as the ancient Greeks philosophised is correct, this shows that employees who perform poorly should blame their managers for their lousy leadership skills.
I think we all know that no one will ever want to hear that. Perhaps there are a lot of factors to blame, and every situation is different. No… that perspective doesn’t allow for witty catchphrases. I love how Kiyosaki ends the article:
Two of my favorite stories are of the alchemists, proto-scientists who searched for a way to turn lead into gold, and of Midas, the legendary Phrygian king who had the ability to turn whatever he touched into gold.
It is my sincere belief that we all have the power to be alchemists, as well as to develop our own Midas touch. All we have to do is stop lying to ourselves, and stop being lousy leaders who blame others for our problems.
Basically, Kiyosaki revered alchemists, but only their hackneyed, stereotypical, and anti-scholarly idea that alchemists were scammers who attempted to turn lead into gold, and Midas, but only the myth of his ability to turn anything into gold, nothing historically accurate.
“We all have the power to be alchemists, as well as to develop our own Midas touch.” Kiyosaki is lying to himself. This sentence sounds great, and I’m sure it can be inspiring and motivating for people with malleable minds, but get serious. You can’t turn lead into gold through a chemical process, and you can’t turn anything into gold by touching it. Even metaphorically, his thesis is just plain ridiculous, and is the opposite of the title of the article, “Wealth Takes Work.”
I know there are a lot of people who swear by Kiyosaki’s writings. After reading his Yahoo columns, there’s nothing that would convince me to spend money on any of his books, seminars, or board games. I’ll give him one thing: he’s a good marketer. But he didn’t win me over.
Updated October 21, 2015 and originally published September 5, 2006.