An Embarrassment of Riches
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An Embarrassment of Riches : Tapping Into the World's Greatest Legacy of Wealth

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Tune into the news and you ll hear stories of war, disease, natural disasters, corruption, violence, poverty, crime, nuclear proliferation, terrorism and political dysfunction in Washington. Polls show many believe the American dream is fading, our children face limited opportunities, and the country is decidedly on the wrong track. Yet this dour perspective one recycled 24/7 by the national media is a gross distortion of the world we live in today. As national investment expert and bestselling author Alexander Green reveals in this engrossing and provocative new book, the human race has never had it so good. In the West today, we work shorter hours, have more purchasing power, enjoy goods and services in almost limitless supply, and have more leisure time than ever before. Living standards are the highest they have ever been. The human life span has nearly doubled over the past hundred years. Literacy and education levels even I.Q. s are at all-time highs. Technology and medicine are revolutionizing our lives. All forms of pollution with the exception of greenhouse gases are in decline. Access to the arts has never been greater. Crime is in a long-term cycle of decline.
And the risk of death by violence has never been smaller for most of humanity. By almost every measure, our lives today are wealthy beyond measure. We are all heir to an embarrassment of riches. Yet thanks in large part the drumbeat of negative media coverage most of us don t realize it. Green compares the average citizen to a lottery winner whose ticket is lost in some upstairs drawer. The consequences of adopting the cynical but popular worldview are many, including needless pessimism, missed investment opportunities, and surprisingly even poorer health. Yet An Embarrassment of Riches provides a powerful antidote. Green begins with a robust survey of the many ways our lives are becoming longer, easier, safer, healthier and more prosperous. He then embarks on a wide-ranging exploration of the ideas and the many men and women both living and dead that are still enriching our lives today.
Among the many subjects explored are American exceptionalism, the extraordinary power of economic freedom, the lifesaving role of medicine and technology, the life-extending benefits of optimism, the radical theology of Thomas Jefferson, the keys to civility and greatness, the wisdom of Confucius and Aristotle, the ability of beauty to enrich our lives, and even one artist s thought-provoking take on how to defeat death. In An Embarrassment of Riches, New York Times bestselling author Alexander Green offers a holistic approach to wealth and offers a welcome perspective that allows us to live fuller, richer lives.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 160 x 231 x 24mm | 450g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 1118608828
  • 9781118608821
  • 973,071

Flap copy

Tune into the news and you'll hear stories of war, disease, natural disasters, corruption, violence, poverty, crime, nuclear proliferation, terrorism and political dysfunction in Washington. Polls show many believe the American dream is fading, our children face limited opportunities, and the country is decidedly on the wrong track. Yet this dour perspective--one recycled 24/7 by the national media--is a gross distortion of the world we live in today.



As national investment expert and bestselling author Alexander Green reveals in this engrossing and provocative new book, the human race has never had it so good. In the West today, we work shorter hours, have more purchasing power, enjoy goods and services in almost limitless supply, and have more leisure time than ever before. Living standards are the highest they have ever been. The human life span has nearly doubled over the past hundred years. Literacy and education levels--even I.Q.s--are at all-time highs. Technology and medicine are revolutionizing our lives. All forms of pollution--with the exception of greenhouse gases--are in decline. Access to the arts has never been greater. Crime is in a long-term cycle of decline. And the risk of death by violence has never been smaller for most of humanity.



By almost every measure, our lives today are wealthy beyond measure. We are all heir to an embarrassment of riches. Yet--thanks in large part to the drumbeat of negative media coverage--most of us don't realize it. Green compares the average citizen to "a lottery winner whose ticket is lost in some upstairs drawer."



The consequences of adopting the cynical but popular worldview are many, including needless pessimism, missed investment opportunities, and--surprisingly--even poorer health. Yet An Embarrassment of Riches provides a powerful antidote.



Green begins with a robust survey of the many ways our lives are becoming longer, easier, safer, healthier, and more prosperous. He then embarks on a wide-ranging exploration of the ideas and the many men and women--both living and dead--enriching our lives today.



Among the many subjects explored are American exceptionalism, the extraordinary power of economic freedom, the lifesaving role of medicine and technology, the life-extending benefits of optimism, the radical theology of Thomas Jefferson, the keys to civility and greatness, the wisdom of Confucius and Aristotle, the ability of beauty to enrich our lives, and even one artist's thought-provoking take on "how to defeat death."



In An Embarrassment of Riches, New York Times bestselling author Alexander Green offers a holistic approach to wealth--and offers a welcome perspective that allows us to live fuller, richer lives.
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Back cover copy

Praise for An Embarrassment of Riches



"In An Embarrassment of Riches, Alex Green reveals a decidedly different world than the one we get from the 24-hour news cycle. By virtually every measure of human well-being, we are living in the best of times. If you're concerned about the future, this is the case for rational optimism. Enthusiastically recommended."
--Joel F. Wade, PhD, author of Mastering Happiness



"An unrepentant optimist, Alex Green here counters the emotional but nonfactual arguments of the doomsday pundits. The truth is we've never had it so good--and I believe the uplifting worldview, so eloquently expressed in these pages, will prevail."
--Mark Skousen, Editor of Forecasts & Strategies, founder of FreedomFest and bestselling author of Investing in One Lesson, The Big Three in Economics, The Making of Modern Economics and Maxims of Wall Street



"An Embarrassment of Riches is a superb collection of essays that looks clearly at the challenge of finding meaning and perspective in our post-modern world. The insights here are not just thought-provoking but deeply inspiring."
--Michael Masterson, bestselling author of Automatic Wealth, The Reluctant Entrepreneur and Seven Years to Seven Figures



"In An Embarrassment of Riches, Alex Green opens the door to a fuller, better way to think about wealth. Finally, someone is talking not just about quantity but about quality."
--Bill Bonner, founder of Agora Publishing and bestselling author of Family Fortunes, The New Empire of Debt and The Idea of America



"This book is a beacon. With each page, Alex reminds us--with characteristic insight and wit--that there is much to be thankful for, if we would only open our eyes and see."
--Hal Movius, founder and President of Movius Consulting and co-author of Built to Win: Creating a World-Class Negotiating Organization
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Table of contents

Preface ix Introduction xi PART ONE: A WEALTH OF GRATITUDE 1 A Message from the Land of the Unwell 3 The Reason You Should Be Biased 7 What We Live to Discover 11 Like No Other Nation in the World 15 How to Put a Touch of Glory in Your Life 19 The Greatest Star of Them All 22 The Man Who Invented Christmas 26 Do You Know Where You Are? 29 The Mind-Boggling Universe, Part II 32 The Best That Has Been Thought and Said 35 A Titan for Freedom and Prosperity 39 The Great Key to Successful Living 43 What You Can Learn from The Gadfl y of Athens 46 The True Rulers of the Planet 50 Confessions of an Analog Man 54 How to Be Miserable in One Easy Lesson 58 For Music Lovers Only 61 PART TWO: A WEALTH OF WISDOM 65 Where Can Wisdom Be Found? 69 Discovering a New Sense of the Sacred 73 The Cash Value of the American Mind 76 The Key to Civility and Greatness 79 How to Defeat Death 83 The Sage Who Spoke to Everyman 86 The Greatest Best Seller of All Time 90 The Pursuit of Moral Perfection 94 How Apple Got Its Zen 97 The Secret of Big-Ass Salads 101 Take a Vacation Inside Your Head 107 The Biggest Question of Them All 111 A Requiem for an Atheist 115 The Nation s Most Misunderstood Man 120 Why Grant s Final Victory Was His Greatest 124 The Other Freedom Document of 1776 129 The Right Man at the Right Time 134 The Most Powerful Thing You Can Do for Your Body 137 The Howling Atheist Who Governed the Country 143 PART THREE: A WEALTH OF UNDERSTANDING 149 Why You Love and Need the Rat Race 153 How to Live the Good Life 156 Nassim Nicholas Taleb and the Pursuit of Phronesis 159 The Gift a Man Gives Himself 162 A Billionaire s Best Advice 165 The Lost Art of Conversation 168 A Visit Everyone Should Make 172 The Man Who Made Dreams Come True 176 How to Talk Politics without Committing Murder 180 The True Secret of Success 184 How to Be a Big Loser 188 Three Words That Will Save Your Life 193 Are You Awake? 196 The One Factor That Changes Everything 200 The Lies We Tell Ourselves 205 How the First Americans Became Last 208 The Top Five Regrets of the Dying 213 A Short Lesson in Humility 217 Afterword 219 Further Reading 223 About the Author 227 Index 229
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About Alexander L. Green

ALEXANDER GREEN is the Chief Investment Strategist of The Oxford Club and the author of three national bestsellers: The Gone Fishin' Portfolio, The Secret of Shelter Island and Beyond Wealth. He has been featured on Oprah & Friends, Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, CNBC, MSNBC, and C-SPAN and has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, BusinessWeek, Forbes, and many other publications. He currently lives in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Winter Springs, Florida, with his wife Karen and their children, Hannah and David.
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43 ratings
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3 28% (12)
2 5% (2)
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