Hacksaw scale


Long writeup, but good lesson: you are always hacksaw relative to someone else.

As a wealthy person, what do you think about the saying, “If you have to ask (the price), you can’t afford it?”

George Zaharoff

George Zaharoff, Menswear Designer, World Traveler (100+ countries/4 million miles flown)

Updated Tue

There is money and then there is MONEY. I was with a friend who was worth about $15 million and we were at a party with people worth over $100 million. He turned to me and said, “I am the poorest man here.”

There are levels of wealth, and as people work themselves up the different tiers, meaning as they get richer, one’s life changes dramatically. You go from getting a room at The Peninsula to getting a suite. You go from traveling business class to first class to flying private. Then the size of your jet comes into play - and that is only a sliver of one’s life.

A dear friend of mine comes from a very wealthy old money family. Her Upper East Side NYC house is under construction, so she has been living at The Peninsula for the past year. She has her hair and makeup done every morning at a salon. Someone who knows NY society will probably know who I am talking about. She has no concept of how much things cost and never asks. Never. Everything is billed to her office, she doesn’t carry a credit card or cash. I’ll get back to that in a moment….

Above you will see the wealth distribution - as part of one’s SES or Socioeconomic Status Socioeconomic status - Wikipedia . Wealth is only a part of one’s SES, there is also education and occupation.

Multi-Billionaire’s Club

This is the top of the top 1%, and although the above chart is in the United States, I want to jump to the Middle East. 7 Of The Richest Sheikhs In The World - let’s say you are on this list. Presto! You are worth a couple billion dollars, you are making money even when you are sleeping. Anything you want to do, anything, you can. You have people around you who make it happen. However, the people you have around you should be looking out for you and trying to save you money. How do I say this…you live your life and as you go from moment to moment, the world around you changes to accommodate your life.

You carry no cash, you go through life with a money man staying to the side (not by your side, but at the corner of the restaurant or the store) and they pay everything as you leave. They follow you around, drive their own separate car, etc. You do not touch, sign, or see anything to do with money or spending.

Going on a trip? Again, your world follows you, your staff, even your cars. You may or may not drive them, but they are there for you (see below, taken at the Beverly Regent Hotel in Beverly Hills).

Flying? You have a fleet of 14 types of aircraft Qatar Amiri Flight - Wikipedia. Really incredible.

Billionaire’s club

Let’s go down a notch - let’s do Oprah money. Oprah has a team of accountants, lawyers, etc. keeping track of her kingdom. She signs any check over $100,000 as she stated to Piers Morgan (it used to be $3000 as she stated on The Oprah Show the last sesson). She wants to know what things cost, and for other US billionaires, most want to know what things cost. Outside of the US, this would be an anomaly, culturally, one would never ask for the price. At this level you have an extensive portfolio of multiple residences, artwork, and of course, cash and stocks.

I will break it down further and generalize ( this is just my opinion, NOT taken from anywhere ):

$500MM - $999MM

I am going to go back to my friend, living at The Peninsula NY while her NY home on the Upper East Side is being renovated. It costs her millions of dollars a month to cover all her expenses - the private travel, the homes all over the world, the staff to take care of the homes and all the other “stuff” that goes with living this type of life.

The famous story of the Thyssen widow who flew on her private plane to Switzerland crying to the trustees of the Thyssen fortune that the $50+ million a month “allowance” wasn’t enough to pay for her expenses. Profile: The incombustible Carmen Cervera Thyssen

$100MM - $499MM

Most have seen the famous Michael Jackson interview where he is in an art gallery picking the pieces he wants, not even asking the price….

$50MM - $99MM

This arena, you fly privately, you have a couple of really awesome residences and live a comfortable nice life.

“Merely Rich” Upper Middle Class $4M -$20M

THIS is the area where your question comes into play. I read other’s posts about driving a Bentley for the price of a Honda. It’s in this level where they actually know what a Honda costs.

$1M -$3M Upper Lower Class

If you ever read or heard the book “The Millionaire Next Door” - there are more people in this category than one would think. They own their house, have a small portfolio, cash in the bank, other investments. Those add up quickly.

The Answer to Your Question:

“If you ask the price of something, you are not really rich to afford it”

I love this article, it’s very accurate: Who Said “If You Have to Ask the Price, You Can’t Afford It”?

In the article it states how some US billionaires ask for - and expect - discounts, whereas outside of the US, the more expensive something is, the better. I work with one of the top mills in the world, Dormeuil. They have developed a fabric that has jade woven in it for the Chinese market… jade. You’re looking at a suit costing over $30,000! None of this fabric has been sold in the US but it has done very well in China. Jade - Fabric range - Dormeuil

So, finally to answer your question, I don’t believe this quote. The way some of the very wealthy got to where they are is because they were smart with their money.

thanks for rubbing it in Ohai, jerk

I would love to see a study which can prove that all of these type A personality people live longer and a healthy life and if possible are they relatively happier?

If you are worth $100M and die from cancer then hacksaw.

Yeah props to Warren Buffett

Damn, long way to go.

Not really. Live, laugh, love. That’s it - right?

You’re right. I’ve had a couple people I’m close to tell me I need to go back to those things, it’s been difficult to find the right balance.

Balance is all you need my friend.


The problem with such statements is that it fails to account for the facts that:

  • being poor does not bring any more balance than being rich

  • many of the very successful / rich have very satisfying careers that gives them energy

  • people who are poor are not poor by choice or by preference for balance but simply because they lack the talent and drive to succeed

We are not talking about poor people here. We are talking about people who are professional and make decent money.

I felt the post was more about spending habits. That’s why I said props to Warren Buffet as he seems happy and lives a relatively simple life, free of the maintenance of expensive physical assets. Yet, he is not poor by any means. He knows how to focus on what’s important in life.

Calling 1m-3m “lower class” is such a clown take you can’t help but laugh. Wonder what that guy’s AF handle is?

probably the AF muni bond dude

Found my class!

“The wealth of many in the lowest 20% is negative due to debt.”

Thanks, wife’s student loans!

It depends on definition, but in a way you could consider that “lower” class, or just part of the rabble maybe.

  1. You actually have to work to survive basic amenities. So, you can’t really do anything you want.

  2. You can’t really influence policy outside your vote.

  3. Life can still be uncertain - illness, financial catastrophe, or accidents can easily wipe out your savings.

  4. You could be constrained by your profession or geography, meaning that your choices are not as broad as they would be for a truly wealthy person.

  5. You are “ruled” by society powers like political parties and special interests, unlike say, $100 million people, who are essentially immune to policy changes, other than something really extreme, like genocide.

So in other words, you can live comfortably, but you do not have the freedom enjoyed by really rich people. For the most part, society dictates your actions and you live a normal life. While I wouldn’t say you are “poor” if you have $1 million, you’re still a normal population person. That’s probably what the author means - “lower” class just means not upper class.

I remember when it was just proletariats vs bourgeoise. Damn millennials.

These are all valid points and I see truth to them except for I think #2 has changed due to the increasing affect of social media and mediums like YouTube to let the voice of reason and the cry of the people come out in civilized nations like the US that don’t block first amendment types of outcries.

Also, ‘What shall profit a man to gain the whole world but to lose his own soul?’ (Matthew 16:26)

While you make think I’m pushing more spiritual loftiness, a man must consider the price of taking on more work at times at the cost of love and time spent with family. When the rich kids grow up and still seek handouts, blow all their millions, and cry out ‘Why??’, you must consider the price of love and the price of money.

In China they have a saying that wealth only lasts 2 generations. This basically means if your grandfather was loaded, your father was taken care of, and the wealth is often squandered by the time the grandchildren roll around.

Money is isn’t inherently evil in itself. It is the love of money that creates problems.

But again, look at Buffett and his children. He gave them what, $1mm apiece - and that one son is a happy farmer, truly content.

brah he obviously chose to experience voluntary poverty just like yourself - amirite??