There are some threads that assert that the wealthy are that way because of corruption and exploitation of the poor. There are those who believe that the wealthy should not have the amount of monies that they have. There are those who advocate a more equal distribution of income among all. However, such is impossible as there are jobs and occupations that are more socioeconomically valued in a particular society than others. This envy of the wealthy is a total waste of time and energy. The time and energy exerted in wealth envy can be more constructively used for one to help oneself educationally and socioeconomically. YES, I SAID IT! What do you think?
There is a difference between envy and criticism.
Envy can be a force for good as bad. Hopefully we envy the rich and work to gain that gift for ourselves. There are three ways to deal with things: ignore them, pout about them and let them break you, or you can grow from them.
I mistakenly thought you were on the side of the good and the just. I was mistaken.
It is likely that every negative emotion arising from the way we interpret things is doing us more harm than good. Envy doesn't get us anywhere. Jealousy is downright injurious - as much to ourselves, heatlhwise - as to those we're jealous of. Yet still these emotions arise in us because of the our varying beliefs that having a great deal of money will solve all of our problems. But ask just about anybody whether they'd like to have more money available for their personal use and they wil say "Yes." Yes, even those whose income is way, way above the average.
Certainly we need more than 'enough to get by,' if we want to live life to the full. But it is in this interpretation of 'life to the full' that is so subjective. One person's having enough might be to go on any holiday or trip that takes ones fancy, being able to afford to go to the best schools, universities and have the best health cover. Another's might be to be able to 'sell the old Cessna and buy a Lear Jet,' or too be own a champion race horse.
As long as we have imaginations it is likely we will envy those who have more than we have. Is it wrong? Only if it motivates us to undertake criminal activity - or morally unsavouring ways - to obtain money. If it spurs us on to provide valuable service by way of some sort of work, it has to be labelled good.
I don't know whether it comes from envy or not, but the attack on the justly rich is counter-productive. If we are to address the unfairness in the economy we have to look at how it got like that in the first place. Going to the source of the problem instead of patching it up and probably making it worse. Many of the rich today are so because they have been privileged by government through the manipulation of currency, regulation of competition, subsidies, bail-outs and unfair tax breaks. It may be surprising, but when you analyse the economy, the government is effectively the only thing propping up the biggest of corporations in the US.
If we focus on liberty and truly free markets, the only thing these people will have to complain about is the justly rich. I am not interested in the distribution of wealth.
First off, you have to define what you mean by wealthy. Are you talking about the small to medium size business who's MD, CEO or however you'd like to refer to them as has made a tidy sum of money? Or, are you taking about the mega-corporations who have made billions? Then you have to show some kind of evidence that those who are critical are indeed envious, or are they just critical?
I think Innersmiff has a point. Government subsidies and tax breaks are supposed to help the small to medium size business, where, in reality, the funding seems to end up in the coffers of the corporations, who just never seem to create those jobs! You also perhaps have to define what you mean by distribution and equal distribution, I doubt very much that envy drives the tax payer to become critical of the large corps, after all, it's the tax payers money that ends up in their coffers.
Well, by that definition, I don't know any wealthy or rich people. I've never met anyone that makes that much money.
The most well off people I know earn around $150,000 a year or so - being my biological father & my sister's husband... wow, I know 2 people who are 1/3 of the way to wealthy... lmao
I don't envy the rich or wealthy - I feel sorry for them. I get disgusted by them. I get irritated by them. But I have never envied them & here's why:
1. The ones who are "publicly vocal" have no compassion or understanding for those not of their same "class". ~ just because someone has less, earns less, or isn't the same as you doesn't make them less of a person or unworthy of respect. Rich folks need to get off their high horses about that.
2. The ones who were given or born into it, without needing to build themselves up from scratch have no idea what it is really like to be a "lower class" citizen trying to make it. ~again, lack of compassion for people unlike them.
3. The ones who flaunt what they have ~ ugh ~ it makes me sick! I can see right through that fake mask they wear. Money doesn't make you happy. Miserable people with a lot of money are still miserable people. Buying all of the toys in the world isn't going to fill the void where your heart should be. Showing off to try and impress people & MAKE them envy what you have that they don't - grow up! All you're doing is showing everyone else that you're just a very expensive shell with nothing inside.
Like I said, I've never actually MET anyone who makes that much money. All I know is that I can't stand the "reality" shows, the tabloids, the news casts, the documentaries, or the interviews of the wealthy or rich because it always seems to be the same. They have no heart!
If being "poor" means you get to have a heart & care about others then I would take being poor over being wealthy any day!
I'm sure there are a select few people out there who actually do maintain their humanity even with all of that money, but there aren't many - at least not in the public eye.
Do I aspire to earn more than I do now? yes. Would it be nice to have that much money? yes.
It isn't the money, it's what you do with it that matters & how you live your life and treat others.
It would be great to earn that much annually. Realistically, if I was even earning $50,000 a year I would feel rich! I've never earned more than $20,000 a year ~ and that was working my butt off 7 days a week at 2 different jobs! No one can keep that up, so I had to go back to earning less & being able to actually LIVE.
Anyway - I think these "attacks" aren't necessarily envy so much as disgust. Sure, you might know more about stocks, trades, and other stuff that rich people do with all of that extra money just burning a hole in their pocket - but it doesn't give them the right to look down on others & it sure as hell doesn't make them better.
I somewhat agree, but there's something that I think you're overlooking.
The wealthy/rich who look down on the less fortunate and the ostentatious are, in the vast majority of cases... assholes. Even if they were broke, they would still, more than likely be, assholes.
It's emblematic of a larger character flaw that isn't necessarily related to the size of their paycheck. Speaking only for the wealthy/rich that I know personally, and that I work with on a daily basis, 90% of them are decent, kind, generous people.
To co-opt a cliche: "Wealth doesn't create character, it reveals it"
Just my humble opinion
I agree Billy Hicks that wealth doesn't create character, it reveals it.
As I said before, I don't know anyone in this income bracket personally. The only ones I know of are those in the "public light" ~ most of which are undesirable in my opinion.
I'm sure there are nice rich folks, just like there are nice poor folks.
I do know someone who was born into it. He is a "trust baby". He delivered pizzas in college for a job and his spending money, he worked for the airlines after college until this recession. His wife is a vet. He is quirky but you would never know he has money unless you pay attention. He loves day after Thanksgiving shopping and his hobby is finding a good deal. His house was a million dollar house but he bought it during the recession for a little over a quarter of that, less than many around here spend on houses. Where it shows the most is the odd conversations that you may have with his kids. When they were in preschool they would ask you about your assets, and not the ones most preschoolers are talking about.
That's cool Lwelch.
correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't "trust babies" the ones who had to lose their parents in order to get the money?
I'm glad he's such a cool guy, and I'm willing to bet he would have rather had his parents alive than to have a trust fund
A trust can deliver at any age under any circumstance. It is just a mechanism for protecting money from being taxed. Most people get their trust money at 21, or a similar age.
In this case his parents set up a trust fund to protect and manage his money. They were alive. There are trusts like what you speak of, but in his case it was a way to pass on the inheritance. My understanding is that he had a stipend that he was receiving through college. I don't know if he gained full control of it at a certain point or not, but even if he didn't, another chunk of change did show up a few years ago when dad did die. I am sure that with that money, you are correct, he would likely rather have dad than the inheritance.
You want to stop people from feeling one of the fundamental negative emotions/sins?
Good luck with that.
You are so right, psycheskinner, with the exception of you and some enlightened folks, I sense nothing but envy of the wealthy in this thread. The envy expressed in this thread is downright venomous and vituperative to say the very least! Psycheskinner, it reminds one of school where there is envy of the A and/or honor students in the class!
I think you may have that the wrong way around. i envy the hell out of wealth. It's only natural. I just don't get worked up about it, one way or the other.
It is the arrogance of the wealthy and those who defend them that leads them to interpret any criticism of their actions to be "envy." Just like the snotty girls in high school who, when confronted about their boorish behavior, say "oh, they're just jealous because I'm prettier."
I could care less about envying them or anyone else. However, if a persistent and talented person wants to be "Like Mike" they can get there. ( cough, cough Kobe Bryant)
Or be like a Gordon Gekko, also known as Bernie Madoff,
If Im never a millionare or billionare i could care less. As long as i can pay my way and provide comfortablely for my family and leave them a little something after I pass then I am content and happy. True we need money but I feel that some blow the whole having money out of portion. What about love and family. There's needs to be an equal balance .
My critiques of the wealthy -- which you characterize as envy -- come from being in a wealthy family and realizing that I had ridiculously unfair advantages over all my friends. Maybe you should stop projecting motives when you don't know the background.
What you are complaining about ("envy of the wealthy") is inaccurate. You are complaining about what I would call "disdain for the wealthy."
I, myself, envy the wealthy and that they are able to live within a much "cushier" means than I do. Who wouldn't envy a Porsche and a heated pool? There are two ways envy can go:
I believe you are complaining about the latter; when someone sees their neighbor, colleague, family member as having more than they do, and they become jealous, and then disdainful about the way they use their money. These are the "life is not fair" people. These are the people who feel they are entitled to everything, because it's "not their fault" life dealt them a "bad hand of cards."
When I see my neighbor with more than I do, it inspires me. It shows me the American dream; that you can work for your means, and get rewarded. When I see a Porsche driving down the street, I think "one day, that will be me." I don't have any ill feelings towards them, and I don't believe that their having a Porsche is preventing me from having one.
Basically: my friends who weren't born lucky had to go into debt to go to college, to have cars, to have kids, to have a home.
Often, they've had to make do, for example renting an apartment -- which is money poured right down the drain -- because they couldn't afford to buy a home.
All that debt means that even working two jobs, they arrive at middle age and are just NOW starting to save.
They won't have enough for retirement.
And that's middle class.
I can't imagine how one can live with minimum wage jobs, which no longer pay enough to keep up with the cost of living (as they did for previous generations.)
Yes, it is POSSIBLE to beat all the odds and climb out of that hole. But it's very disingenuous to pretend a runner with a 1 mile head start in a marathon -- or even a bicycle -- got there through hard work, while the folks forced to start a mile BEHIND the starting line are obviously lazy if they don't win the race.
Adjusted for inflation, minimum wage has been about the same for the past 30 years:
And you don't have to go into debt to go to college. You can start working one of these minimum wage jobs right out of high school, and save money, then go after a couple of years. You can also go to cheaper alternatives, like community colleges and state universities.
My stepdad didn't graduate college until he was 50. He has no debt, and a very cush retirement. He decided to go back to college so he can get an MBA, so he could gain the tools to expand his already successful business.
"Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me. They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand. They think, deep in their hearts, that they are better than we are because we had to discover the compensations and refuges of life for ourselves. Even when they enter deep into our world or sink below us, they still think that they are better than we are. They are different."
Not my words, but those of one of my favorite writers, F. Scott Fitzgerald.
I think it's not so much about the amount of money someone has, but how they earned it (or stole it).
I do envy people who have a knack for business and parlay that into wealth. Good for them! It's inspiring and the American way.
I disdain the likes of Gordon Gekkos and Bernie Maddoffs. Greed is not the same as wealth. I do not envy people who make truly obscene amounts of money gaming the system and hurting other people. Do they contribute anything positive to anyone other than themselves? Are the CEOs of companies who crash their companies really deserving of ginormous golden parachutes?
Perhaps that, too, is the American way.
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