What Does It Mean To Be Rich?

Posted: April 19, 2011 in Uncategorized

J Paul Getty, a wealthy American oil tycoon, said “You’re not rich if you know how much money you have.” Cornelius Vanderbilt, another American industrial tycoon, certainly would have been rich if measured by this standard.

One of his many houses, the Biltmore Mansion in North Carolina, stands as an example of wealth and prosperity. It is the largest private home in the United States. It has 175,000 square feet and 250 rooms! A typical American residence has between 1500 and 1500 square feet and 6 to 10 rooms.

At the same time that the Biltmore was being built, many American workers were surviving on subsistence wages and were working long hours in factories.

What do you think it means to be “rich?”
Do you think truly rich people are happier than those who aren’t?
Finally, do you think its fair that there is often a huge gap between what the people who own the factories and businesses make in salary and what those who work in the same places make? Why or why not?

  1. Feige says:

    To have a lot of money. Some rich people could be more happier than those who aren’t but some rich people can get disliked because of the greediness. Yes I think it is fair because business owners should make more.

  2. Mandy T says:

    What i think it means to be rich is that you have lots of money or have a big house. I do not think that richer people are necessarily richer than poor people, it all depends on what you make of your self. Yes i think it is fair because the person that owns the company has worked to get there.

  3. Darin H says:

    To be rich is to have money or how nice you are.
    Rich people as in money are not always not happier then others because money can’t everything.
    I don’t think that it is fair to have a gap because then they can have anything and make taxes go higher which the poor people can’t pay.

  4. Allison I. says:

    I think rich means to have a lot of money of be of great value.
    I think they are because they can have anything they want.
    Yes, I think its fair because they own the factory or business so they should make more than their employees.

  5. Maddie S. says:

    i think societies out look on “rich” is to have lots of money and nice things but i think being rich means you have enough money to pay for the things you have and even have enough to splurge on other nice things. Some rich people might think they are happier but i don’t think every rich person is happy with their life and the things they have. No because some people need the money and if those who have more then enough can’t respect those who don’t have enough that just isnt fair

  6. Chelsea Murphy says:

    Being rich to me would be living in a huge house with nice cars and everything way nicer than you need. No I don’t think rich people are more happy than people with less money. Well is is kind of fair because they own it, but it would be better if the people that work for them got paid more close to their pay.

  7. Megan R says:

    I think to be rich means that you have a lot of money and you know how to spend it wisely. In a way I do think that rich people are happier than poor people. They know they have the money for food and shelter and all life’s necessities, and they don’t have to worry about not having enough to eat or no where to live. I think it would be fair that business owners should get paid more than workers, they have to hold the business together and hire workers to keep the business going.

  8. Lauren Y says:

    I think being rich has nothing to do with how much money you have but with how much you love and how much you are loved by other people. No because while they have money they don’t have anybody who really cares about them and all the people who do know them just want their money. I think that everybody who works in the same place should make the same amount of money be cause it just seems fair that everybody who is doing the same amount of works as someone else should make the same salary as that person.

  9. Eli Plunkett says:

    Rich: In my words: To be full, or bountiful in something. In this case, money. They have a surplus of cash.
    Rich people often are not as happy, they usually are popular, or something of the sort, that would allow them, less privacy, more paparazzi, more people watching what they buy, drive, eat, drink, date. They are less happy because they aren’t all that appreciative for what they own, or receive, making the poorer man much happier. Tho’ they struggle.
    People owning the companies need to make more money so they can actually pay the amount of workers they have. It’s not fair that they will get an excessive amount to spend after they pay workers, and business costs. The workers do more work, and strive harder just to live.

  10. Heth says:

    Being “Rich” means to have a good income. Most rich people aren’t happy and this is a fact as most people say money can’t buy happiness. It is fair in the United States because every one here has the chance to be whatever they want to if they please to. If the workers in factories focused in high school and attended college and than graduate school they could have made a better living.

  11. lowe says:

    i think being rich is about what your past family has or has not owned… as an example. farmers from way back then. these rich people today were handed farm land and alot of it. but when it was passed on to them. they sold it. all of it. thus “rich”

    no they aren’t not even close… they don’t know what it means to live.

    not even close. just because they own it. they should make a fair salary make it so all people are treated equal. it’s bs if they were to only make min. and the owner makes 5 times that amount. its un fair.

  12. Riley L. says:

    What do you think it means to be “rich?”
    to be living comfortably, and to ultimately be happy with yourself and your life
    Do you think truly rich people are happier than those who aren’t?
    In some ways yes, and in some ways no.
    Finally, do you think its fair that there is often a huge gap between what the people who own the factories and businesses make in salary and what those who work in the same places make? Why or why not?
    Yes its fair, because some where along the line the people who own the factories had to work extremely hard to get into that position, or their fathers have.

  13. Emily B says:

    I think that “rich” means that you have a lot of money and get to do whatever you want. I think that people who do have a lot of money, should be happier, but i don’t think that is true. People with a lot less money, i fell are much happier. They have a better relationship with their family and friends. Well if you own the factory, then you would be making more money then every single worker in that place. So i do think it is fair even though the workers work very hard for that money. But on the other hand if the worker is making like 50 cents a day, then that is definitely wrong. They work hard for that money and should deserve more.

  14. kenneth c says:

    to be rich means you have enough money where you dont have to worry about not having enough for bills, expenses, or holidays. People with more money are problem free cause they dont have to worry about things, like see movies all the time where some big rich mob boss can just buy the cops and get away with everything. im not saying all rich people do that not even sure if people do that but they dont have to worry about things. i think its fair because its there business they need to make some money, sure it would be unfair if it was like extremely low and working all the time

  15. Tori D says:

    To be rich is to have more than enough money.

    I think rich people think they are happier than those who aren’t but I don’t think they truly know what it’s like to be happy.

    I think it is fair because the people who own the businesses or factories have many expenses towards the factory or business. After getting that paid for they still need a salary so I think the gap is fair.

  16. Kylie R. says:

    I think there are different meanings to being “rich.” You can be rich in money, but not be rich in happiness with your money. I think to be rich is to have many amounts of money. I don’t think it matters whether you are rich or not to be happy. Yes i think its fair because the person who owns the factory has to do all the work to keep it working.

  17. Amanda W says:

    I think that being “rich” money wise means that you obviously have a lot of money. Or at least more money than the average household. I do not think that people with more money are happier. I think that money means nothing in this world. It is just a paper object that gives people something to either brag or sulk about. I do think that it is fair for the business owner to be making more money than the people working in the factories. The owner has a lot of responsibilities and after all, the workers would not have a job if it weren’t for the owner.

  18. Jordan F. says:

    I think the meaning of rich means you have a lot of wealth that will last you a life time. I don’t think you have to be rich to be happy. I honestly think more people that aren’t rich are more happy then people that are rich. I think its fair, the people that own the businesses may have worked a lot harder then the factories workers. People that work hard are more then likely to make more money that they deserve.

  19. Alex T says:

    TO be rich is to have an extreme amount of wealth. Rich people sometime don’t always have the praise for what they had. When as the not so wealthy people are more modest to what they have. It’s almost as though the rich people think that they don’t have enough/

  20. David S. says:

    The definition of richness can vary, but it generally means that a person is wealthier than most people with whom he or she is compared. I think that there is a slight correlation between wealth and happiness and that earning money can make people happy in the short term. However, in the long term, wealth does not significantly increase or decrease a person’s happiness. I think that it is fair that business owners make more than their employees because the owners have the right to set wages for those they hire, and the owners usually face a much greater level of risk with their business.

  21. Catrina W says:

    I think to be rich, in this case means to have a very large amount of money. You can also be rich in family and friends or culture etc.

    I think that happiness depends on the person. Some people would be happy if they had more things. Some people make a positive difference with their money. That would make me happy. However, if they don’t have family and friends as well, I don’t see how they can be truly happy. A poor person could be just as happy or happier than a rich person if they have people in their lives or are doing something they love to do.

    I do not think it is fair. I think people should be payed based on the amount of work they do. Not that the owners don’t work hard, but so do the workers.

  22. Zach A says:

    To be rich, by today’s standards, is to have an excess of wealth such as currency, oil, etc.
    I don’t think that the average rich person is happier than just an everyday person because of all of the stress that comes along with having all of that extra money.
    I don’t think that the salary gap is fair. I do believe that the owners should have a little bit more of a salary than the workers, because they had to work just as hard to get there, but then again, they still don’t have to do manual labor.

  23. Emily R. says:

    i think there is two diffret kinds of rich but it all depends on what way you look at it. there is the type of rich were you have lots and lots of money and a huge houses or maybe even a couple houses and you can pretty much get what ever you want! and then some people might say thta being rich you have like a good family and are happy just the way you are! but it all just depends

  24. Miranda B1 says:

    Though a lot of people would say rich means to have a lot of money, a big estate, that kind of thing. Which if you would be right. but being rich is also having things that makes you happy. If money is what makes you happy then you’re rich. If family and friends is what makes you happy. Then you are also rich

  25. cyler A says:

    to be rich it think is to be lucky. i truly think some people who are rich are happier then alot of others who arent because they say money doesnt buy happiness but everything in this world has to do with money. i dont think its fair that there is such a huge gap between the classes because some of us are really hurting by this economy.

  26. Makaygan P says:

    Being rich means to have the necessities you need to survive. Just because you are rich doesn’t mean you need the biggest cars and the biggest houses to impress everybody. Some people are happy with their money because they ration it and don’t go out and spend it every chance they get. But some people aren’t they think they need the biggest an best things, so if they don’t get it there not very happy. No, i don’t think its fair, if you make 2.5 million dollars a month then don’t you think you should at least give some of the employees a raise.

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