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One person I know was dirt poor but their family started a clothing company of sorts and live like kings now. Millions of dollars, factories in china, mansion, cars. Their son married a smoking hot wife and they had kids and have just about everything you could imagine. Look happy too. That's pretty much the only person I know made it big. Everyone else is the old 9-5.
What about you guys?
Were the family immigrants to the country or were they native born Americans? What racial background and religion are they? I think it depends on many factors to be honest; for example, I think being Jewish helps, since the Jews pretty much own everything in America these days and hate non-Jews (goyim) and only look out for their own kind; it's similar with the Asians too. Also, it helps if you have connections to the wealthy and powerful elites--otherwise, you're pretty much screwed. The American Dream is dead, DOA, over!!! I repeat, over!
A few, one was living as a kid with no electricity or plumbing. Later in life, got contracts for upgrading the military's computers. Made millions and now lives great. Another the same almost, but became friends with the guy who started Nike. Was his neighbor and he told him that they were going opening stocks for the public. He got first dibs and sits nicely. Made a deal with a college in Oregon. All his great grand kids college are payed off for some of his stocks, they agreed.
So...insider trading then? Lol, but that's just luck or seizing an opportunity by being friends with the right guy.
Not all of their own kind and not to the same extent. Jews have a cast system. They will not let their own kind starve which is true but they have special groups which are closely nit and which help big time inside of that clan. In Israel, they treat Jews from Ethiopia and ex Soviet Republics like shit and do not let them progress- all the good jobs are for the native born, well connected elite. But they do provide the minimum- citizenship and some small stipend- it is required by law.
In the USA, again, while the Jews will provide minimum, they are highly segregated. American Jews only help American Jews. If you someone is a Jew from Asia or Africa or E. Europe , he/she will get just some help but not much. This is why Jews from Iran or Russia stick with the same Jews from those countries. American born Jews consider them subhuman but they do help with minimum things.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
There's tension between American and Israeli Jews too.
It helps to be smart. That opens many doors. Smart or talented in things like the arts. Besides that, it isn't enough to just be smart or talented. You need to be in an environment where you'll be allowed to flourish. I just got back from San Diego for my 21st birthday. Here in New Jersey I hate the cold and don't connect with the people, wanted to die and dropped out of college. I came back thinking if I had been born in San Diego or the like I'd be in CalTech headed for Silicon Valley and be happier, warmer, and have a better social and dating life. That's in the same country, to say nothing of differences abroad. Another example, how many Western rock stars fail to break America but are huge in Japan?
Kid at my school started an IT recruitment company. He was the alpha-est male in the class, and ended up making his million before anyone else. I don't know who else made it big, but I expect a few did.
OK so I don't have a million, but I'm 40 and about to have a 3-4 year mini-retirement. That's more to do with being frugal and good with money than anything else.
Some of the IT people I've worked with have got pretty senior now. I know an IT director of an investment bank, and a few are CEO's of their own companies.
I quit my boring cubicle slave job and now I'm Happier Abroad...
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Making it real big is relative, but a guy I worked with went to Stanford and was one of the founding members of PayPal which later was sold to eBay for tons.
Needless to say, he is now a billionaire and he just sold Yammer to Microsoft for 1.2 BILLION earlier this year.
He was always kind of an arrogant prick, but he certainly proved his mettle.
There was nothing wrong with 9-5 until recently really. But to travel, live abroad its likely you need some "wealth" that is relative of course.
Do I know successful people? A few, but its nothing I wanna repeat. I've always wanted to blaze my own trail but lack the knowledge. The internet levels the playing field as a source of information.
I have low expectations, maybe that's a bad thing, but I also view it as if It was easy to reach goal #1, then goal #2 only needs a bit more effort.