The pandemic has been a good time for the rich.
Besides taking it easy during COVID-19 lockdowns, many have seen massive increases in their personal wealth over the last year. (Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, broke the world record at $200 billion.) No, there’s nothing wrong with starting a business and using effective marketing strategies to make it grow. The problem is relying on shortcuts that exploit market demand or using questionable practices to succeed.
Similarly, while there’s nothing wrong with being rich (even excessively so) the problem is when people rely on trading tricks. That often means gambling with complex matters, from commodities and cryptocurrency to blockchain and Bitcoin, only to become stingy, petty, vindictive when they reach the top (assuming they don’t lose it all on the way there).
Alas, it seems like there’s a growing tendency for people to lie, cheat, and steal to get ahead. Usually, it starts with simple dishonesty or deception, whether it’s through fake identities or false credentials. And then things get bolder, with con artists engaging in audacious frauds and outright scams.
Of course, not everyone has the patience to play the long game. And so they simply steal what they want, from rare books to ancient artifacts to many things in-between. But, as should be clear by all the epic tales of tragic downfalls, it’s not worth the risk when there are better ways to build your wealth.
It’s much like Aristotle writes in Poetics (also available on Audible):
The line between virtue and vice is one dividing the whole of mankind.
Choose your side.
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