Why Do So Many People Hate the Rich?


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Our family struggled with poverty and, like many who struggle with poverty, I found solace in our poverty by hating the rich.

So, I had my own personal feelings for hating the rich.

But thanks to the enormous amount of research I gathered about the rich and the poor, I had hard data to help me better understand the rich and the poor. My five-year study opened my eyes for the first time.

Based on my research, this is why I believe so many people hate the rich:

#1 Envy

Envy is fed by a feeling of hopelessness.

Since rich haters have a negative mindset, they invite envy into their thinking universe. Rich haters are envious of so many things rich people have: their wealth, their courage to pursue their dreams, their ability to shoulder enormous risk, their persistence, their fearlessness, their optimistic attitude, their positivity, their enormous faith in themselves to overcome all obstacles, etc.

#2 Hopelessness

Rich haters are envious of the rich because they feel hopeless. That hopelessness is the byproduct of not knowing what to do to become rich, not having any success mentors in their lives and being indoctrinated with the limiting belief that the accumulation of wealth is impossible for the non-rich.

#3 Misconceptions About the Rich

Rich haters have many misconceptions about wealth.

Misconception #1 – The System is Rigged

Rich haters believe that the system is rigged against the non-rich. Depending on the study, between 69-80% of the rich are self-made, meaning they came from poverty or the middle-class. So, clearly the system is not rigged.

Misconception #2 -Government Can Eliminate Injustices

Rich haters believe government can level the playing field by taxing the rich more and redistributing what they’ve taken from the rich, to the non-rich.

Misconception #3 –   You Can’t Save your Way to Wealth

21% of the self-made rich in my Rich Habits Study became wealthy by saving and prudently investing their savings.

#4 College Debt

Rich-hating millennials were sold a bill of goods that college was the #1 path to success and wealth. As a result, many went into debt in order to finance a college education, only to learn, upon graduation, that college is not the panacea they thought it would be.

Those graduates still living with their parents, really hate the rich.

#5 2008-2009 Recession

Many of today’s millennials saw their family life upended by the 2009-2009 recession. They lived through one or more of their parents losing their job. Some were forced to leave their homes, their college, their friends and their neighborhoods.

All the while, the rich seemed to go on about their lives as if nothing changed.

#6 Corporate Greed

Depending on the research, CEOs earn anywhere between 24 times to 300 times the compensation of the average worker. Rich haters find this unconscionable. And, quite frankly, everyone should.

The problem, however, is not with the CEOs of the world. It is with the failure of the directors on the boards of large companies who refuse to take a stand and cap CEO compensation.

#7 Political Ideologues

In his You Didn’t Built That 2012 campaign speech, President Obama argued that the rich owed their wealth to the government. He stated that everyone who built a successful business, did so because of the government and not as a result of taking enormous risks, working harder or working smarter.

He went on to explain that the government built the roads, the bridges, the sewers and the infrastructure that made it possible for businesses to engage in commerce.

He was right – the government did all those things.

But he seemed to forget that the government works for the people.

It did all those things because the people made government do all of those things and the people provided the government with the financial resources (tax dollars) to do all of those things.

Nonetheless, that speech was validation to the millions who already hated the rich, and it further fanned the flames of their hatred.

#8 Hypocritical Celebrity Role Models

There are many celebrities who bash the rich, which is ironic, since most celebrities are rich. These hypocritical celebrities are role models to many young people who follow them on social media.

Since negative thinking is a habit and habits spread like a virus throughout your social networks, those following these rich-hating celebrities on social media become infected with their negativity towards the rich and adopt their toxic thinking.

#9 Never Taught How to Become Rich

Since most people come from either poverty or the middle-class, they very rarely have anyone within their inner circle who can teach them what to do to become rich and successful.

No problem. That’s what college is for.

Nope. Colleges don’t teach you how to become rich and successful.  There are a few colleges that offer entrepreneurial studies, but that is just one piece to the how to get rich puzzle.

#10 Lack of Success Mentors

93% of the wealthy in my Rich Habits Study indicated that they were fortunate to have been mentored for success by someone – a parent, teacher, family member, friend, colleague or boss.

When you lack success mentors, you have to figure things out on your own through the school of hard knocks. Not everyone is willing to attend that school, however, as it generally requires taking risks and working absurd hours in pursuit of a dream.

Risk invites the potential for failure and because rich haters are mired in negativity, all they see is failure. Their fear of failure holds them back from taking risks. And hard work is, well, just too hard for rich haters.

#11 Negative Mindset

Many of those who hate the rich, have a negative mindset. The lens through which they see life is toxic, myopic and hostile with respect to the wealthy.

They do not see opportunities, unlimited potential, possibilities or solutions. Instead, all they see are problems, roadblocks, rigged systems, inequities, hopelessness and exploitation.

#12 Limiting Beliefs

Rich haters were raised to believe certain myths about the rich that simply are not true. Here’s an article I wrote that highlights some of those myths: The Pursuit of Wealth is Heroic – http://richhabits.net/pursuit-wealth-heroic/.

Rich haters believe it is impossible for an average person to become rich. They are first in line with anti-rich cliches, such as he’s a member of the lucky sperm club or she was just in the right place at the right time.

My mission is to share my unique research in order to help others realize their dreams and achieve their goals. If you find value in these articles, please share them with your inner circle and encourage them to Subscribe. Thank You!

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Thomas C. Corley About Thomas C. Corley

Tom Corley is a bestselling author, speaker, and media contributor for Business Insider, CNBC and a few other national media outlets.

His Rich Habits research has been read, viewed or heard by over 50 million people in 25 countries around the world.

Besides being an author, Tom is also a CPA, CFP, holds a master’s degree in taxation and is President of Cerefice and Company, a CPA firm in New Jersey.
Phone Number: 732-382-3800 Ext. 103.
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  1. Thomas K Tinney says:

    This is soooo purrrrrfect and True! Thank you for sharing this extensive research Tom! It is very important! 3-4-2019 @ 12:35p.m. Thomas K Tinney, Cleveland, Ohio. E-Mail: TREETOPENTERPRISES@aol.com

  2. I went through all of that on my way up the ladder, I want to educate people like you do

  3. This is an excellent read. Thank you sir.

  4. bojangles says:

    you look like jared the subway guy. it wouldn’t surprise me if you are into the same things as him. the majority people who hate the rich don’t want to be rich or envy the rich. they want to be left alone.

    • Those who hate the rich are anchored in negativity and controlled by their negative, limiting beliefs. It is easy to identify these negative haters – they disparage anyone and everyone who dares challenge their cherished negative beliefs. As this angry, hateful person is doing to me. I normally spam these troglodytes, however, I wanted those who follow me to bear witness to their existence. They hate anyone trying to better their lives, anyone trying to help anyone better their lives, and the successful. You will run into them during your pursuit of success. Just be aware, they mean you harm and avoid interacting with them as best you can.

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