Mon, 26 December 2022
Greed is defined as an “intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power, or food”.
Should wealth be redistributed so that everyone is equal?
“I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” -Thomas Sowell
When I was a fresh college graduate, I resented the rich. I discuss the catharsis that made me change my mind.
Our guest, Doug Casey, believes that college reinforces the wrong wealth mindsets.
Today, one often hears that one should “pay their fair share” of tax. What does this really mean?
If one obtains wealth with integrity, that wealthy person makes everyone else wealthy. I give the example of Jeff Bezos and Amazon.
Learn why Doug believes that Social Security is a redistribution scam.
Learn more about Doug Casey:
His YouTube show is: Doug Casey’s Take
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Welcome to GRE! I’m your host, Keith Weinhold. Should we “eat the rich”? Are wealthy people greedy? And where does that belief come from? Should everyone be financially equal and taxed equally too. I answer, “Are rich people greedy?” Today, on episode 429 of the GRE Podcast.
Welcome to GRE! From Hartford, CT to Weatherford, TX and across 188 nations worldwide. You’re back where FF beats DF. I’m Keith Weinhold. This is Get Rich Education. Welcome to the last show of the year.
Are rich people greedy?
First, what’s the definition of greed? Well, the world’s best known search engine puts the Oxford dictionary definition at the top.
Yeah, I think this is a good definition. It says greed is:
An intense and selfish desire for something, especially wealth, power, or food. That’s the definition. And then the example of the use of the word in a sentence is “mercenaries who had allowed greed to overtake their principles”.
You know, the example really hints that greed is a corruption of sound morals or principles in order to get more for oneself.
Greed is not good.
Now, for some reason, actors and entertainers can make gigantic salaries and high-flying paydays but people don’t seem to resent them as much as entrepreneurs or CEOs that make a lot of money.
For some reason, the actors and entertainers as seen as lovable and the entrepreneur or CEO is deemed greedy.
Recently, soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo became the highest-paid athlete ever at $200M per year.
Yankees slugger Aaron Judge $360M over nine years.
Those athletes entertain others. I like watching sports. But I don’t know that they’re advancing society like the innovation that Steve Jobs brought to Apple.
Yet it seems like an entrepreneur could get more criticism.
Now, there are bad examples too. I specifically remember when Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary criticized crypto. Then he seemed to do a 180.
Later, we learned that Kevin O’ Leary accepted $15M to promote the crypto company, FTX, that had horrible financial records and was committing fraud.
Was O’Leary greedy?
Then you & I need to ask ourselves, if YOU were offered $15M to do crypto commercials, then would you be incentivized to put your $15M on-hold while you did due diligence on a company that even had pro sports arenas named for them.
So, when we think about what is & what isn’t greed, you also need to think about what YOU would do in these situations & hope that YOU would do the right thing. I do too.
Do the right thing before you do things right.
And, as you know from being a listener to the show here, I don’t take money from just ANY sponsor. They must be aligned with GRE’s mission here of financial freedom over debt freedom and prioritizing ideals like cash flow and prudent use of leverage.
Most of my income does not come from the sponsorship of this show, not even close, so I can BE selective.
But what if that were one’s primary income source. You can begin to understand how they would be less selective. Could THAT degrade into greed?
Now, when it comes to wealth, poverty & greed, think through the prism of “redistributions of wealth”.
And, in just a minute here, this is going to lead us to the greatest quote about greed that you’ve ever heard in your life.
How about something like college student loan forgiveness, which, depending on the borrower’s status is up to either $10K or $20K. It looked like that was going through and then it got held up in the courts.
Well, what about those that didn’t go to college because they didn’t want debt.
But now, if every American effectively gets taxed at a higher rate to pay for student loan forgiveness, then the people that decided not to go to college in order to avoid the debt have to pay for those that did decide to go to college & take on the debt.
Now, as you hold that thought, here is what American economist and academic Thomas Sowell said about greed. Sowell said:
I have never understood why it is greed to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.
Yeah, gosh that’s good. And the first time I heard that years ago, I found it remarkably thought-provoking.
Therefore, you can at least ask the question then, just posit the question, is it greed for someone to EXPECT student loan forgiveness?
Well, International Man Doug Casey is waiting in the wings here. Later on the show, he & I are going to volley this “eat the rich” topic back & forth.
BTW, have you ever realized that no one wants to be called rich or poor. If you call someone “rich”, they’re uncomfortable and they like to spurn what you just said.
If you call someone poor, that’s seen as a pejorative & quite hurtful.
Everyone wants to be known as middle class. No one want to be called rich or poor - but almost anyone would rather have more money than less.
The song says, “Mo money, mo problems.” But I think most people would accept $10M if you offered it to them right now. Yeah, I’ll try living with that problem.
Well, when Doug comes on with my shortly, I’ll tell you about my cathartic experience with “Are wealthy people greedy” - and how my turning point was about that light bulb moment with regard to “opportunity”.
Virtually all 8 billion people on this earth have the opportunity to make their life better.
But I think it’s important to acknowledge that some people have more opportunities than others.
The United States is one world nation with more robust opportunities than average.
Look, if you were born in the US, or even if you emigrated to the United States, globally, you won the “opportunity lottery”.
That’s because the US only has 4% of the world’s population.
It’s not much different in Canada, which has less than 1% of the world’s population.
Then, within the US, I won what I call the “parent lottery”. No, it is not because I was born wealthy. I was not. Not even CLOSE.
It’s because I was born to two parents that provided a stable home, were married & committed to each other before they had me, and nurtured the environment where I could thrive & fail & succeed & learn and not have to deal with dysfunction of any kind.
I’m really grateful for that.
Now, what about real estate investors today? Do you deserve to prosper?
Think about how made time to listen this show because you care about your future.
Your future is worth caring about… because you’re going to spend the rest of your life there.
Then you established good credit in order to get a mortgage loan.
Then you took on the risk of repaying a mortgage loan.
Then you took on property owner risk during COVID and inflation and a possible recession… all to do good and provide housing for others.
So… do you deserve to prosper and build wealth for doing all of that for others? For strangers even?
Hey, if you did, you overcame many people’s almost inherent laziness. Got up early, worked hard at times, took risk, how about confronting your PM? Or confronting your tenant?
If you learned how to make the world a better place & helped others, is that greed to prosper? No. Not at all.
Our guest, prolific author & thought influencer, International Man Doug Casey, I saw in an article where he quoted his contemporary Rick Rule. Rule said: “Eat the rich. Prepare to starve.”
That gives you a clue as to where Doug Casey is coming from. That’s straight ahead.
I’m Keith Weinhold. There will only ever be one GRE Episode 429… and you’re listening to it.