For some people the answer to almost any question is money. Whilst I would not underestimate its power, money is simply a method of exchange. In the most part having money means having choices and more opportunities. This doesn’t mean that those without it have no choices or no opportunities, but quite obviously they are much more limited.

Money is the oil in a system to get things done. However as is also pretty evident, possessing a lot of wealth does not really mean that more opportunities are taken, indeed choices might appear to become more limited, falling into social expectations about what to buy, possess, retain whilst protecting with ever more complex security.



There are always those that are willing to extract your money from you. This week I had yet another person confide in me that they were victims of a financial scam and felt too ashamed or embarrassed to admit it to others. Most of us, of course, work hard for our earnings, we don’t steel of kill for it. That said, one of the myths that I grew up with was that hard work pays. This is quite obviously not true. Plenty of people work hard or long hours and are not well paid, existing just above the bread-line, hence the need to work long hours. There are others that simply work in a way that by no measure appears “hard” yet are rewarded or remunerated very handsomely. This is of course simply another of life’s “welcome to adulthood” lessons.


Those with very few opportunities, that possess the right skills at the right time can have their lives improved enormously by some helpful cash. One of the few common agreements about the Chancellor’s Budget is an unsaid one… we all would like to keep or get a bit more.

Take Darlene Sweet, a singer is living hand to mouth, gig-to-gig, struggling to get by and desperate for a moment, a lucky break. It’s all about the books you read, the places you visit and the people you meet… right? Well for Darlene, she happened to check into a hotel (the El Royale) near Lake Tahoe, on the border with Nevada and California… but the other guests, staff and hotel are not all that they appear to be.

The latest movie “Bad Times at the El Royale” by director Drew Goddard plays with our sense of security, individuality and ability to adapt to new information. What people will do to protect their own interests, how they respond to extortion and how easily manipulated most of us are. A bad night for the guests, made worse with the arrival of Billy Lee, a knock off of Charles Manson, duping followers with half-truths about money, power and corruption, explaining choice whilst amassing greater wealth and abusing the power he has over those that trust him. The proverbial thief in the night…

Here’s the trailer for the new movie. There was a fair bit of disagreement within my family about whether the movie is any good, I found it quite gripping and delightfully shot – with scenes reminiscent of Nighthawks by Hopper. My daughter however felt it dragged, the acting was poor and the entire thing overly simplistic…

Dominic Thomas
Solomons IFA

You can read more articles about Pensions, Wealth Management, Retirement, Investments, Financial Planning and Estate Planning on my blog which gets updated every week. If you would like to talk to me about your personal wealth planning and how we can make you stay wealthier for longer then please get in touch by calling 08000 736 273 or email