Personally, I can't see the appeal in trekking down to D.C. for a networking extravaganza, even if it is built around a special moment in American history. While I find the election of Barack Obama inspirational, I don't have a desire to memorialize it with overly effusive celebration.
When you are born rich, you have all these options. You can pursue a career path that you find interesting; there's no need or pressure to start working to get funds just for survival, which is something a lot of people have to struggle with.
I remember I was in grade school, the fourth grade, in a free reading period in the library. Someone in my class found a copy of the Forbes 400, a list of the richest people in America, and my dad's name was on it.
Contrary to common assumption, many of the wealthiest Americans aren't worried about the weakening economy at all. They are actually excited about it.
I think people who don't work don't really have interesting and meaningful lives. More than anything, it hurts them. When you're born rich, people just associate you with what you've been given, but the truth is every individual feels better when you create something on your own. Everyone takes pride in the work they do.
People don't want to have to justify their privileges; they don't want to have to justify having access to the power and resource that wealth brings. And by not talking about it, they are able to hold onto their power without being questioned, and I think that makes them feel more secure.
There's an unspoken rule in affluent circles that suggests you can always define an individual's status by measuring his or her proximity to the most influential person in the room. And as the maxim goes, closer is always better.
In affluent communities, where each member is keenly aware of his or her place within the Byzantine order, attracting the right friends is a blood sport. Chumming up to influential figures who are in a position to help can determine the course of an entire life.
For rich children, it'd be very easy and convenient never to take any steps to build an identity outside of your association with your family's wealth.
I know people socially who live in countries where the wealth gap is more extreme than it is in America, and they live with full-time security. They live with the threat of getting kidnapped, or they live with the threat of people invading their homes.
I had hoped that foreboding economic circumstances would have caused the ultra-rich to think not just of themselves and increasing their own personal affluence. Unfortunately, however, too many of them lack concern, and without this concern, the divisive imbalance will only worsen with recession.
Our family's fortune is growing faster than ever. We're a part of a small number of American families that own most of the country's wealth. But having so much in the hands of so few can't be good for America.
I think there's something in people where they often want to describe their personal experiences, but when it's regarding wealth, they're obviously very guarded.
I think there's something in people where they often want to describe their personal experiences, but when it's regarding wealth, they're obviously very guarded. They're very worried about how people are going to react to what they say.
I was very close with my mother growing up. I have four older sisters who were an important part of my life. And I've been very close to all the women I've dated. I feel most comfortable around women.
The secrecy surrounding wealth and the anxiety of talking about money is absurd. If you are rich and you live well and you spend money and it is an essential part of your lifestyle, then you shouldn't be ashamed of talking about it. You shouldn't be ashamed of it. And I think you should accept it and be honest and open about it.
There are certain vulnerabilities and insecurities that go along with not being linked to another person in a contractual way, even if it's an unspoken contract. People in New York manage that pretty well. I prefer choice and desire over convention and limitation.