“9 Foolish Truths That I Hold to Be Self-Evident” | The Motley Fool

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If you’re a longtime listener to this podcast, these truths may seem self-evident. But to much of the investing world, they’re still wildly contrarian. So please feel free to share this Motley Fool Rule Breaker Investing episode with someone who doesn’t get it yet.

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This video was recorded on Oct. 6, 2021.

David Gardner: What are the eternal verities? The things that have the state or quality of being true. Do you know the phrase eternal verities? Well, then maybe you know some of them; truth, right and wrong, good and evil, hope, love, compassion. You might have your own, though, to live up to the phrase, they need to be eternal and they need to be true. But what are the eternal verities in the world of money, in investing specifically, but also in business. Well, every two years on this podcast, I bring you nine Foolish truths that I hold to be self evident. Things that I believe, that I hope you believe, things that I believe you should believe. Truths that I want to make sure I don’t forget to state and restate, reemphasize, at least every two years. Indeed it was four years ago, and two years ago this very week on this podcast that I’ve last spoken to these, which means, checking my Apple watch here, yeah, it’s about that time, once again. Time for really one of my most important podcasts that I ever do for you. It’s time for nine Foolish truths that I hold to be self evident, this week only on Rule Breaker Investing.

Welcome back to Rule Breaker Investing. What are we doing this week? Well, I want to go back as I mention and restate some of the classic Rule Breaker points, stories, basics. Especially for those of you who may be new, who’ve never heard all of these laid out on the table for you, displayed in full so that you can dine at this table surrounded elbow to elbow with Rule Breakers and know how we think and what we do. Well, long time listeners have definitely heard me say this before, after you do a few hundred podcasts, and this by my reckoning is number 330. That’s 330 consecutive new weekly podcasts without a single skip or repeat as I’m trying to become the Cal Ripken of financial podcasting, except a lot of people cared about that hall of fame baseball player’s streaking, I don’t think really anybody cares about Cal Ripken’s podcast. But anyway, as I say, once you’ve done 330 consecutive new Rule Breaker Investing weekly podcasts, the older ones, they start to drop below the fold on iTunes. They fall away from our minds. I mean, I might remember how much fun I had here with Seth Godin or inventing the first Market Cap Game Show, or five good stocks, but those are all ancient history now and I cannot expect that you dear listener, that you have ever heard them or know of them, or even so remember them. I make assumptions sometimes that I said a year ago, so I’m sure everyone remembers that thing I said, whatever it was, and I can’t assume that.

A lot of podcasts you could just start in the middle. I mean, especially the newsy ones, you could just join in anytime you like, but for Rule Breaker Investing, this is a strategy, this is an approach. It’s a thought framework which is very helpful for any new listener to have in place as he or she begins listening to podcast number 331, number 332. That’s why every two years I like to reset with this podcast, nine Foolish truths that I hold to be self evident. Nine things that I take for granted. I think you should, but I don’t want to take for granted that you do take them for granted or know them for yourself to be self evident. Here we are, we find ourselves at this place once again, in our end road, T S Elliot is our beginning, my nine Foolish truths that I hold to be self evident. Let’s get started. Foolish self evident truth number 1 is about business. In fact, the first two are about business. We’re not even talking about investing yet. Truth number 1 is about how to do business right, and finding businesses that do business right as an investor. There are a lot of them and they’re growing, good news. I would say that we’re living in an increasingly enlightened capitalistic environment. That’s not ever to say that things are perfect or can’t be improved, but in fact, one of the things that I love about the time in which we’re living is that things are pretty persistently improving, a lot of them.

As Kevin Kelly, the author of the book, The Inevitable said on this podcast, “We’re living not in a utopia and certainly not in a dystopia, but rather in a protopia.” That’s a world that gets a little bit better almost every day, but almost invisibly. It’s not evident until you step away and look back a year, or 10 years or how about 500 years, and you see the amazing amounts of human progress that get rolled up over time. So yeah, one of the things I love about the time in which we’re living is that things are pretty persistently improving. Sometimes in fits and starts, sometimes we take a big step backwards. It’s not true in all areas of the world, and I especially want to make it abundantly clear, over these past two years, that for many, the world seems to have gotten worse, gone to a bad place. In some instances I will agree, although most of all, I think about vaccines, rather than just COVID. I think Zoom, it saved our economies. I think our heartbreaking acts of goodness and sacrifice and love that I hear about or see every day. Am I not reading the same headlines you are? While that’s very likely true since news media headlines are very intentionally tilted toward trolling you with negativity so it gets the clicks. If you dear fellow Fooler, reading it, you’re probably seeing that, in which case the difference between us, it’s just that I’m not. My head isn’t buried in the sand, at least I sure hope not. I think we’ve all become aware of much systemic injustice and yet, that’s a great step, because it may not look like such a big deal right now, but that’s invisibly the world getting a little bit better every day. Many of us have become aware of systemic injustice and are now working to do good things about it.

Next week, I’m excited to be speaking at the Black Wealth Summit with my friend Cedric Nash. Speaking of Zoom, you dear Fool can attend, and if you or a friend of yours, might be interested, please do buy a ticket. You can register today, it’s blackwealthsummit.com. See you next week, but to get back to my subject, the way that capitalism is practiced and talked today is far superior to what I inherited anyway, when I came on this Earth 55 years ago, maybe you too. I was reminded of my Foolish truth, which I hold to be self evident number 1 here, as I made by annual trip last week to Austin, Texas for the Conscious Capitalism CEO Summit, because number 1 is chapter and verse conscious capitalism. In fact, remember the four tenets of conscious capitalism is also one of the six habits of the Rule Breaker Investor, which I’ve presented before. My God, was it three years ago now in this show? Let’s restate. There are four principles that underline what I consider to be effective capitalism, and these are not my ideas, these were originally settled on by Whole Foods co-founder John Mackey and his friend academic and coauthor Raj Sisodia. Both of them I’ve seen speak so beautifully and eloquently about how to do business right. They settled on these four principles. You could read their book Conscious Capitalism, learn more about them, but quickly the first is that you are a purpose driven organization. This works for profit and not for profit. I think a lot of us recognize that not for profits often do this very well. They have a strong sense of purpose.

One thing we tried to do here at The Motley Fool that I think our employees appreciate, is that we’ve tried to bring the heart of purpose from the not for profit world right into the entrepreneurial platform that is Motley Fool Inc. Anyway, strong sense of purpose. By the way, I’m not saying we even do it that well here at the Fool, but we’re trying. I think you know our purpose is to make the world smarter, happier, and richer. I hope that you’re working for an organization for profit or not for profit. If…

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