Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Buffett's Monetary Magic
No, not Warren Buffett: Jimmy Buffett. Jimmy -- 60 years old, as of Christmas -- is an easy entertainer to enjoy (the Boomers' own Andy Williams, with the Bahamas standing in as Branson, MO). And if I say he's clearly a shrewd manager of his own image, I am in no way implying he's anything significantly other than what he appears to be. But here's my question: who's the person holding his purse-strings?
My guess is Buffett (like Williams) has a good head for financial figures. His particular corner of the entertainment industry is crowded with inept, one-note trumpet players who indulged themselves into obscurity; if any one of them had practised just a little fiscal restraint, they could have avoided Reality TV and retired with some dignity. Even entertainers who reach the top and stay there have moments of financial embarrassment. U2, Elvis Costello and Sting have had to wash their hands of shady finance gurus. And does anyone remember Planet Hollywood?
The Jimmy Buffett industry, however, is one of those rare, sealed packages that doesn't leak. He makes large claims about taking it easy, and while a man of his means probably knows how to relax, he's pretty industrious all the same -- if you're penning books and burning CDs while "operating a chain of seaside bars", chances are you're not in the habit of suffering rum hangovers. I get the impression Buffett is a little like Walt Disney, only happier.
So who's in his finance posse? Whoever it is, Parrotheads could stand to hoist a glass in his (or her?) honor. The money-minder has done for Buffett what money-minders should do for creative types: kept him flush and productive, and happy to keep going. Cheers to that.