People Helping People Help Themselves
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 A Christian businessman offers an inspirational blueprint for happiness--which includes ownership of a small business, unlimited opportunity to accumulate wealth, and development of a ``positive, compassionate'' stance toward one's own and others' ``dreams.'' In bite-sized segments with subtitles like ``Who Was Karl Marx and Why Was He So Angry at Capitalism?'' and ``Winners Heeded! Whiners Ignored!,'' DeVos (founder and president of Amway Corporation, a huge pyramidal network of door-to-door product salespeople) advises underpaid and downtrodden people all over the globe to latch onto independent means of livelihood--though how they might do so remains vague, unless they're one of the book's hundreds of examples of purchasers of Amway distributorships. The attitudinal requirements, however, are clear. In chapters that parallel DeVos's ultimate ``Credo for Compassionate Capitalism'' (available as a poster), ``family men and women'' are urged to dream great dreams and then to evaluate what in their lives needs to change to make those dreams come true, focusing on trading despair for hope, debt for probity, and indifference for renewed devotion to ``God, country, family, and work.'' With lots of anecdotes and quotes from the likes of Winston Churchill, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Jesus, and with full-length stories of many satisfied Amway owners included, the author exhorts budding entrepreneurs-cum-compassionate-capitalists to find a mentor (i.e., an Amway sponsor), set financial goals (meet sales targets), and someday become a mentor to others (rise in Amway's pyramid of salespeople). He also fervently supports tithing to churches and charities and ``helping to save the planet, our island home.'' An unmemorable but good-hearted addition to the tradition of Dale Carnegie and Norman Vincent Peale.

Pub Date: April 12th, 1993
ISBN: 0-525-93567-3
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 1993


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