Jeff Lerner Review by Rita Kerr

Review by Rita Kerr

Does not get any better than Jeff Lerner - as a mentor or business guide.

Under the age of 30? Yes you can retire by 50 and here's how you do it.

Learn how to set yourself up for success with these financial goals to hit before you’re 30!

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Whether it’s owning your first home, second home, traveling, or living a life you always dreamed of, it’s so important to have some clear goals to reach before you hit 30.

If you’re looking for some inspiration for what these goals could be, you’re in the right place.

I want to share millionaire advice, that if you start now, you can set yourself up for success.

If you want to find out how to set yourself up for success, the steps you take to reach your goals are vital.

It’s all about having a plan.

If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail - it’s as simple as that.

I’ve been where you are now and I’m not here to show you the road to failure, I want to share what really works.

I have tried many ways to create wealth and success in my life and I have failed.

The truth is, failing isn’t a bad thing because it means you’re trying!

But with my help, you can at least learn from the mistakes I made and avoid repeating them.

I made mistakes but now I have $50 million-plus revenue!

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How to Retire by Age 50

Start Saving EARLY!

Maximize Your Retirement Savings

How Much Retirement Income Will You Need at 50?

How Will You Make Your Money Last in Retirement?

Setting your financial goals before 30

00:00 Intro

2:30 Setting up For Fincial Success Under 30 Years Old

2:58 What Are Your Financial Goals?

9:04 Your Options Decrease Over Time.

10:35 Two Core Strategies To Govern Your Financial Life

11:59 50,30,20 Rule Of Thumb for Budgeting

14:41 40,40,20 Rule of Thumb for Entrepreneurs

16:51 Living off of 20%

19:25 Push yourself to $250k

20:48 Three Phases of Wealth (Legacy)

21:25 Anamolous Cashflow

24:36 Things you need to learn on your own. (We teach it)


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The Contrarian: Peter Thiel and Silicon Valley's Pursuit of Power

Audible Audiobook – Unabridged

Max Chafkin (Author), Will Damron (Narrator), Penguin Audio (Publisher)

3.5 out of 5 stars

321 ratings

A New York Times Notable Book

A biographical account of the venture capitalist and entrepreneurs Peter Thiel, the enigmatic controversial, highly influential power broker that sits at the intersection of technology, business and politics.

"Max Chafkin's The Contrarian is much more than just a shockingly honest account of Peter Thiel, the most important tech investor and a prominent backer of Donald Trump presidency. It's also a disturbing account of Silicon Valley that will make you rethink the ideologic foundations of America's unstoppable machine of destructive innovation." (Brad Stone the writer of The Everything Store and Amazon Unbound)

Since the era that the bubble of dotcoms exploded of the 1990s No industry has had a an impact more profound on the world like Silicon Valley. Few people have had more influence on shaping Silicon Valley than Peter Thiel. The billionaire venture investor and entrepreneur has been in the background, influencing many aspects of our modern lifestyle that span from the technologies that we use on a daily basis to the delicate balance of power that exists between Silicon Valley, Wall Street and Washington. Yet, despite his power and the widespread nature of his ventures there is no person in the public eye more mysterious than him.

In the first-ever major biographies of Thiel, Max Chafkin traces the course of the innovator's unique life and outlook beginning with his early childhood as a child of immigrants' parents to his time in Stanford as a growing conservative thinker to the creation of PayPal and Palantir, early involvement into Facebook and SpaceX as well as relations with fellow tech titans Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk along with Eric Schmidt. The Contrarian exposes the extent of how Thiel has sought to bring his ideals to the apex of power outside of Silicon Valley, including funding the litigation that destroyed Gawker's Gawker's website Gawker and adamantly supporting extreme right-wing political candidates, including Donald Trump for president in the 2016 election.

Inspiring and thoroughly reported, The Contrarianis an inspiring story of a singular leader, and a revealing depiction of the tech sector whose rapid expansion and power is exciting and full of controversy.

JoAnne Goldberg


5.0 out of 5 stars

Successful sociopath

Reviewed in the United States on September 30, 2021

Verified Purchase

A week ago, I attended a bookstore event entitled "Thiel's Pursuit of Power," an interview of Max Chafkin by fellow Bloomberg reporter Emily Chang. One of the last questions she asked was about Peter Thiel's propensity to exact revenge on anyone who opposes him. Was Max worried?

"Well, I am not selling any sex tapes," he said, an allusion to Thiel's destruction of Gawker via Hulk Hogan. Nervous laughter ensued.

The one-star reviews here have Peter Thiel's fingerprints all over them, especially the 3,500 word diatribe that had hundreds of likes within a day of the book's release. (I suspect he wrote it; if he didn't, he provided most of the content.) I hope it doesn't get any worse than one-star reviews for Max Chafkin, as he's written a fascinating tale of a diabolical plotter who's achieved inordinate success -- partly because he has few scruples and seems to care about no one other than Peter Thiel.

As a resident of the local area, I could not have been happier to hear that Palantir was leaving for Colorado. For years, the Palantir minions had dominated downtown Palo Alto, driving out dozens of businesses in their insatiable need for additional office space, the glassy-eyed millennials roaming the sidewalks. Were they spying on us? They didn't even seem to see us. It's entirely amusing that Palantir's farewell statement to Silicon Valley made snarky comments about Google and Facebook spying on people and selling their information. Sure they do, but they also offer other services. Palantir is only about spying, and its presence here made many residents uncomfortable.

So I was fascinated to read that Palantir had been something of a bust -- its software didn't work that well -- and if not for the small investment that Thiel made in a former president's campaign, one that brought in billions of dollars in contracts, the company might not have survived. Similarly, PayPal had been a poorly-run enterprise under Thiel: the more customers it acquired, the more money it lost. Who knew? Meanwhile, Thiel has socked away billions of untaxable dollars thanks to major loopholes in the Roth IRA -- loopholes that most of us could never exploit -- and bought citizenship in New Zealand, a favorite doomsteader haven.

My favorite part of the book describes Thiel's efforts to exert influence over the 45th president after backing his candidacy. In this situation, Thiel was out-manipulated, and by that point of the book, I was ready to root for anyone who managed to get the better of him. Thiel's style is domination through fear, and the former guy simply wasn't afraid.

The Contrarian is far from perfect: it could have used better editing. At least twice, the author repeats the same story in a slightly different way. There are a few inaccuracies -- the school's legal name is in fact Leland Stanford Junior University (rarely used day-to-day, probably because the school got tired of explaining that it was not a "junior university"). Names are misspelled. That was offputting at times, but not enough to detract from the tales that made this book a riveting read.

46 people found this helpful


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Jack Cassidy

5.0 out of 5 stars

Scary and well-told story

Reviewed in the United States on September 23, 2021

Verified Purchase

I only ever heard of Peter Theil as a sort of right wing odd duck. He is so much more and scarier than that.

This book is the story not only of an unprincipled and powerful man. It's also kind of a tour through Silicon Valley of the time. I'm well versed in the origin stories of HP and Apple, but nothing I knew before prepared me for this.

Great book. Very well written.

18 people found this helpful


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5.0 out of 5 stars

A peek behind the curtain, worth a read

Reviewed in the United States on October 4, 2021

Verified Purchase

First heard about this book in the Wall Street Journal. I’ve read my fair share of books like this and the author’s research is extensive and the writing is engaged.

I think the poor reviews indicating bias are purely political. People who thought this book would be pure praise for Thiel. However the author proves Thiel’s connections to the alt-right were decades in the making. Despite this, didnt feel the author was biased and rather explained the nuance and Thiel’s views.

Id recommend this books to fans of Zero to One

8 people found this helpful


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Anne W.

5.0 out of 5 stars

This is an important book.

Reviewed in the United States on October 16, 2021

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I was fascinated to learn of the breadth of Peter Thiel’s reach in so many aspects of American society. This biography is an important document for our times and a compelling tale.

6 people found this helpful


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Alex Gove

5.0 out of 5 stars

A Balanced View of Peter Thiel's Meteoric Rise to Power

Reviewed in the United States on September 25, 2021

The Amazon reviews of this book have obviously been hijacked by Thiel's legion of followers. The Contrarian is nothing like what they describe.

The truth is that Max Chafkin charts Thiel's rise from childhood and makes every effort to show both sides of the story.

Many of the revelations about Thiel's past are shocking, such as his dismissal of women's suffrage and his flirtation with alt right characters that are so extreme that they would be called white supremacists in another age.

Thiel also has no truck for business ethics: time and time again, he seemingly encourages his companies to "fake it until they make it."

Perhaps the most alarming passages concern Thiel's thoughts about democracy. Clearly, he favors a world in which superstar entrepreneurs ("builders," in Thiel-speak) call the shots.

Still, Chafkin takes great pains to portray the world as Thiel sees it, and we see a complicated picture of a man struggling to control the contrarian impulses that are driving him.

I knew the basic outlines of Thiel's story (the alarming Stanford Review articles, the battles between PayPal and, the bets on Facebook and Palantir, and the debacle that was Clarium Capital), but I learned much more about the man than I expected from Chafkin's account.

Highly recommended.

19 people found this helpful


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Wilber Hernandez

5.0 out of 5 stars

A must read

Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2021

Well researched and documented book for a wider audience that needs to know the extend of Peter Thiel’s involvement in funding Trump and the alt-right for the past 5+ years. Peter's behavior seems to be more machiavellian than contrarian for the purpose of amassing power in whatever that may be to him at different times. His track record of unethical behavior seems to make him a dangerous person to the nation.

9 people found this helpful


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Henry Case

5.0 out of 5 stars

Superb Character Assassination of Peter Thiel

Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2021

For anyone that already dislikes Peter Thiel, this is a MUST READ.

The author does a superb job of telegraphing his expertise on Silicon Valley's most secret man. With lots of name dropping and inside interviews with the kids who bullied Peter, there's little doubt of the author's intellectual honesty and rigorous reporting.

The book's narrative is also outstanding. The way the author juxtaposes irrelevant, yet emotionally loaded, facts is unparalleled. Did you know Peter donated to the 2016 Trump campaign - and Trump also made salacious remarks. Did you know Peter lived in South Africa, a country also known for human rights abuses and RACIAL tensions?!?! MIND BLOWN.

If you have neutral feelings about Peter, or if you judge him to be anything less than the second coming of Satan, then stop now, and BUY THIS BOOK. You will hate him by the end!

Thiel acolytes should also read this, as it will surely challenge their sense of humor. However, (trigger warning!) this may not be a good choice for anyone interested in objective biographies, those that tend to think critically about what they read, or readers concerned about wasting money generally.

Five stars!!

4 people found this helpful


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Frank LaPitas

5.0 out of 5 stars

You will not be able to put this book down

Reviewed in the United States on October 13, 2021

Peter Thiel is not as much of a household name as some of the other famously ruthless men to come out of Silicon Valley like Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg, but he if he is half as known he is 10x as interesting. This book reads like a thriller, a deep dive into the life of a person who not only has built his own businesses and fortunes, but is also lying right under the surface of many other success stories (Facebook, Trump, and Ethereum to name a few) - and sinister underpinnings seem to run through most of what he touches. Chafkin does not pull any punches here, but he's not dunking on Thiel either. This book is a genuine attempt to understand who Peter Thiel is, how he operates, and what his endgame is– and it follows those questions wherever they lead. Highly recommended! (I'm thinking good stocking stuffer for other tech/business nerds I know...)

5 people found this helpful


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San G.

5.0 out of 5 stars

The 2nd or 3rd most entertaining business book I have ever read

Reviewed in the United States on November 21, 2021

I almost didn't read it because it had less than a 4 rating on GoodReads/Amazon but I gave it a try after seeing it won universal journalistic acclaim.

Peter Thiel is such an interesting and controversial person, and one of the most influential people in America.

The book not only gives a lot of insight to him, but also behinds the scenes of how business and politics influence each other.

The book is also polarizing. A lot of people hold Thiel in high regard, his book Zero to One is probably read by every tech startup founder. For those people, I must warn that the book contains some very unflattering truths about him, which are well documented and corroborated, and the work has universal journalistic acclaim. I think this is why some of the reviews on GoodReads and Amazon were so polarizing; it seems that many of his most loyal fan didn't even read the book since the reviews were posted before the book was even released.

One person found this helpful


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Ricardo A. Guarnero

5.0 out of 5 stars

Excellent book on the "mad professor" Peter thiel

Reviewed in the United States on November 29, 2021

The negative Amazon book reviews on this books have all the markings of a PR firm hit job. The book review equivalent of flooding the civic square with nonsense complaints. I read a lot of books (especially deals gone bad stories) and this is one of the great reads of 2021.

The book reads well but reveals some pretty hair raising stories of Theil. A spoiled and immature billionaire can basically turn every impulse into reality. Theil is a very ugly man with weird inconsistencies such as his embrace of evangelical right wing positions. Scary and a wonderful book.

2 people found this helpful


5.0 out of 5 stars

Very well reported

Reviewed in the United States on October 3, 2021

It seems clear a lot of the reviewers (oddly/interestingly) have a positive view of the subject of the book. I found the book very eye opening about its subject and well reported.

4 people found this helpful


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X. Trapnel

5.0 out of 5 stars

An amazing and frightening saga

Reviewed in the United States on November 11, 2021

If you fear and loathe Donald Trump, The Contrarian will give you insight into one slice of his supporters – the Peter Thiel faction.

Chafkin tells the Thiel story from the beginning. Family, childhood, nerdy high school chess wiz, militant right-winger at Stanford, associate of just about every conservative or libertarian you have ever heard of, big-time business ventures including PayPal, Facebook, Palantir. There is plenty of who-did-what-to-whom in the boardrooms and tales from the life of a billionaire. An amazing amount of detail on all of it, a testament to Chafkin’s work ethic and ability to make it all flow.

But the real meat of the book is politics, not business. There are dozens and dozens of names you will recognize, from Scalia and Bill Bennett in Thiel’s Stanford days to later politicians like Ron Paul and Ted Cruz. His journey through the fever swamps leads him to the greatest swamp creature of them all, real estate baron, TV celebrity and most improbable president, Donald J. Trump. When you finish reading this delightful, fast-paced story you will be an expert on the political underworld Thiel has helped create and that has brought us to the present moment.

One person found this helpful


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Brett Lovelace

5.0 out of 5 stars

Reveals of a world of global power and influence

Reviewed in the United States on October 17, 2021

Author Max Chafkin brilliantly details Peter Thiel and his network of loyal disciples across technology, private equity, government, and academia.

Chafkin explores all sides of Theil and weaves the contradictions and subtleties of his personality, appeal, and growing following of supporters and critics.

This is more than a biography, it closely covers business strategy, VC culture, and how money and is the ultimate driver of human behavior.

One person found this helpful


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I-to Chang

5.0 out of 5 stars

I wonder how many books, ideas are buried under biased reviews..

Reviewed in the United States on October 19, 2021

I wonder how many books, ideas are buried under biased reviews..

One person found this helpful


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alexander e. kevis

5.0 out of 5 stars

Great read

Reviewed in the United States on September 22, 2021

an excellent read. well written and insightful. Don"t listen to the haters

17 people found this helpful


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James B

5.0 out of 5 stars

Bio of a very dark soul

Reviewed in the United States on September 21, 2021

Peter Thiel is one of the most influential, and enigmatic, leaders to come out of Silicon Valley. Secretive, but craving respect. Insightful enough to make PayPal a success and to put early money into Facebook, but not investing more funds into the company when given the chance (losing out on billions) and too petty to invest in Tesla because of past disagreements with Musk. Politically naive backing Ron Paul for president, but later seeing Trump for what he could do and backing him. This book gives you glimpses into this complicated man who seems like he wants all the money in the world and then recklessly mismanages it. Who seems to want to change the political system, but at other times wants to tear it all down. He seems to want to abolish college, but wants all these schools to respect him. Such an interesting book about a very angry and dangerous man.

18 people found this helpful


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From other countries

Timian Goldbeck

5.0 out of 5 stars

Well researched and in-depth

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 8, 2021

Verified Purchase

Ignore the organised backlash against this book, as evidence in the numerous, similar 1 star reviews being left.

This is in-depth, very good reporting, especially on his early years. Last 3rd part of the book (post-2016) is more well trodden ground and less engaging, but the first 2/3rds is great to understand where Thiel came from and how he became a major force within the tech worlds elite.

Whenever a member of the establishment elite gets held to account, there is backlash, which is what has happened against this book, which is another sign of why it's important reading.

6 people found this helpful