Mindset Inequality

Two articles on how growing up poor makes you suck at getting rich later in life. There are bugs in your mind’s software that ground you. First story about a poor immigrant kid from Taiwan. He went on to Stanford but felt out of place from the other rich kids around him.


The second is a rundown of some lessons I am sure most people here have seen. It’s a nice compilation.


Back in 2004, a single mother on welfare by the name of Candy Adams won a cool $10.5 million from the Ontario lottery & Gaming Corp.

After becoming a millionaire literally over night, she started blowing her money on designer clothes, luxury cars, big houses, crazy parties and expensive vacations.

A decade after winning big, she had spent it all, every last penny… and she was back to living in a rented house and riding the city bus to her part-time job.

Candy’s story teaches us that wealth is not about money, but about mindset.

A rich-minded individual with only $100 to his/her name is much better off than a poor-minded individual with $1 million to his/her name.

If you don’t remember anything else from the rest of this article, please remember this — building wealth has nothing to do with money, and everything to do with your mindset.

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I don’t know if I buy this. I know plenty of poor immigrants who went on to become very successful. I actually know way more immigrants that have done it than Americans. Immigrants tend to be more willing to live at a lower standard to save and invest in growing a business.

I think the bigger point should be redistributing money won’t create equal wealth. The poor will still blow their money on stupid stuff and end up poor again. The wealthy will continue to make good decisions and rebuild their wealth. Redistributing wealth would only create equality on a short-term basis. You’d have to constantly redistribute to have equality. If you do that, at some point the wealthy will decide it’s not worth it to just have it taken away every couple of years. Once they stop producing above and beyond, then you’ll get people starving. That’s how communism always ends.

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Immigrants tend to stick to the middle road. That’s why many of them go to engineering and medical schools. That’s the proven professional track. You don’t need a lot of social soft skills to do well as an engineer or medical doctor.

Compare that to being a CEO or tech startup founder.

That’s still way more successful than the average American who grows up in a lower income home. Also, didn’t someone publish a pretty good percent of venture backed startups are founded by people born outside the US?

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Immigrants could come from a middle class or even upper class family in their motherland

Looking at section 8 families, what percentage of their kids become middle class, upper class or the rich?

Family value and mindset is a big factor. Church for the poor should do more to create success stories like Ben Carson. They should teach kids to work hard and not blame others or even take riot as the way to get ahead

To be 100% honest, I think the inherent nature of a particular person is pre-determined. A person who has high EQ and/or IQ will be successful even if he had come from a disadvantaged background (e.g. Ben Carson); a person who has low EQ and/or IQ will not be successful even if given a huge boost in life (e.g. the person who won $10 million lottery only to squander away all and back to being poor).

Of course there are also environmental factors in play. For example, in the 1970s, a Chinese person who had much higher EQ/IQ than an American was nonetheless much poorer on average. However, with increasing globalization, this kind of imbalances will eventually be minimized.

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ISo much discussion about inequality. The world has been always unequal. The most important inequality is the biological differences. Some people have good looks, good health, good height, good eyesight, strong arms, fast legs, good voice, naturally skilled hands etc.

Difference does not mean an inequality. That guy went to Stanford while many students did not and might as well be more qualified or more disadvantaged than him

Millions of people have advantage over us, it’s a difference, it’s part of diversity. We should just live our life and stop complaining. Be proud of who you are, live the life you wan to live. That Stanford guy seems to be living his life based on other people’s wishes. He can be highly successful but so what? Many section 8 single moms can be happier than him

There are studies that show poor kids who grow up on government assistance are far more likely to end up on government assistance. That’s even true if you control for income and compare to equally poor families who don’t receive assistance. That’s why some people argue the programs create dependency and aren’t designed to help people move up in socioeconomic standing. That’s why we should look at actual results of programs vs. intentions. It makes no sense to blindly throw money at programs where the results aren’t what’s intended. We should redesign programs, so they create the desired results.


But have you ever considered the possibility that without government assistance, these families might as well be reduced to beggars? They needed the government assistance because it isn’t possible for them to move up in socioeconomic standing. Those who could would not have needed such assistance to begin with.

Well, if the parents talk a lot about how to continue to qualify for section 8, kids would be very interested about it and may just work hard to qualify for it.

If the parent talk about how to start a business and how to grow the business, kids could be thinking a lot on what business is the best for him.

I guess you can call it a mindset. Is there data on career correlation between parents and children?

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Interesting to know. I have government assistance from elementary all the way to University.

I had 50% government assistance in University. The other 50% was paid for by scholarship. I did not use all of it and saved up the money. So I ended up with a surplus after graduation :slight_smile:

I think that’s the intent. I think the actual result is it enables or rewards those people to not take action to improve their life. There’s so many programs without a cohesive strategy. I’ll point to two things.

  1. The welfare cliff where making under $30k/yr is the same as making $70k/yr. If you start making over $30k, then you lose tons of different benefits. So unless you can more than double your pay from under $30k to over $70k, it makes sense to stay below $30k. The incentive is for people to stay low income forever and never start moving up the ladder. That’s not how programs should be designed, but it’s what happens when there’s 30+ programs without a cohesive strategy.

  1. States that require adults without children to either work, volunteer, or attend training to receive welfare benefits see a significant drop in applicants once the rules are implemented. If these people needed help up, then they’d have no issue meeting the requirements to work, volunteer, or take training. The fact they drop off the program shows they were avoiding working, since it was easy to do.

I actually do loans through kiva.org which addresses this issue in low-income countries. It’s far more effective than our welfare programs.


Interesting–I know someone like that. Only one of his friends or family who had gone to college, let alone an elite one. He always said he felt like a fish out of water. One thing he did say though–whatever someone gives you, you accept it. So if he had a job offer, he wouldn’t have negotiated it. I’ve no idea what he’s up to now–he was studying to pass the bar last I talked to him. So he didn’t do too badly, but yeah the adjustment was really hard for him.

Money is merely a tool…Unfortunately most people aren’t handy with tools…lol


More like most of them is only skilled in one tool, everything looks like a nail.

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Most are handy at spending money, few are handy at making money…Trump is an idiotic asshole but at least he claims he took a million dollar loan and turned it into $10b…Most lotto winners loose it all quickly…have no clue how to make money…A good friend is the widow of Dave Schultz. …he was murdered by John Dupont. .See Foxcatcher…She received a $35m settlement. …lost half in the 2008 crash…most of the rest has been given away. …In Russia everyone received equal shares in the government owned industries in 1998…In a year the economy was in shambles and most people sold their shares for peanuts…within just a few years almost everyone had nothing…banks failed, people lost everything except for a few rich oligarchs. …Very few can keep and grow a nest egg


Of course it is the case. That’s why the 1% is truely just 1% of the population…