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Retirement Planning > Social Security

Death to the self-help movement?

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Wow, last week, we published an article by Larry Winget, the opening keynote speaker at Senior Market Advisor Expo, and had no idea it would garner the responses it has.

Sure, Winget is known as the pitbull of personal development, but who knew his article on “The corruption of the self-help movement” would create such a firestorm of comments?

I’ve included the comments here. Read them and then let us know your thoughts on the article and the self-help movement.

“Baby boomers were born between 1946 and 1964, but you are lumping all of them together. A lot of our systems over the past few years have been abused by those who feel they are owed. Our system is so loaded with errors, and people abuse the system by lying on forms. What about our [government] representatives setting an example for the people they represent? It all started somewhere and was allowed to be abused. In order to correct this mess, what would be a good place to start? People are just fed up with all the oversight and no one taking steps to help correct our systems”.


“Remember when teachers, public employees, NPR and PBS crashed the stock market, wiped out half our 401(k)s, took trillions in taxpayer-funded bailouts, spilled oil in the Gulf, gave themselves billions in bonuses, and paid no taxes?”

-Jake Miller

“There are a lot of things wrong with the self-help movement, but moving from a help-yourself to an entitlement mentality is not one of them. Entitlement comes from a family culture of over-dependency resulting from not having to worry about whether there is anything for dinner (or where it came from). It starts early in childhood-kids catch it from their parents. Your description of the self-help movement is accurate enough, but I don’t get the connection between it and entitlement. If there is one, either there’s more to your column or I’m an idiot.”


“This article is right on. And to make matters worse, our current president is hell-bent on turning the U.S. into a socialist state.”

-David Margraf

“I do not disagree with most of your article. I do believe it is a little bit simplistic. In today’s complex world, to be independent and financially successful requires substantial education and/or training. Unfortunately, our politicians at all levels are ignoring the number of people in our country that are not getting well educated. If every individual has a good education and self confidence the problem you discuss would not exist.”

-Flem Messer

“I resent you classifying Social Security as an entitlement. I am 60 years old and have been paying into the program since my first job at age 14. I have earned any future Social Security payments I receive in retirement because it is a return of my money. That is totally different from a true entitlement program such as Medicare. You should recognize the difference.”

-Bruce Hagan


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