CHAPTER 9

The Dangers of Wealth

Having achieved remarkable success at a young age, Robert was already looking for other challenges. At age 39, he had built his small auto parts store into a regional chain with 40 stores and he eventually sold it to a larger chain. With a net worth of more than $25 million, he would never have to work again. Politics always interested him, and being as active as he was in the community and charity organizations, he was constantly being recruited by political organizations to run for office. He decided to run for an open political seat, so he set out on the luncheon circuit to build support among the community elite.

During the course of a question-and-answer session at one luncheon, Robert was asked what he thought of a particular opponent who had a reputation for being a womanizer. Being a political novice, Robert didn’t sidestep the question as he should have; instead he made a comment about a “revolving door of women at his [opponent’s] house.” While he did get a laugh out of the audience, little did he know that a women sitting in the back of the room was Twittering his comment to the entire world. It was re-tweeted more than 10,000 times within the next few hours and it made the front page of the local paper.

Although Robert apologized publicly for his comments, his opponent threatened him with a defamation lawsuit, more for political purposes than anything else. Fortunately for Robert, his opponent was nearly as wealthy as he was, and he ...

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