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Thread: wealth can't exceed/unable to pass beyond the third generation (fu bu guo san dai)

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    Default wealth can't exceed/unable to pass beyond the third generation (fu bu guo san dai)

    wealth can't exceed/unable to pass beyond the third generation (fu bu guo san dai) by Guo Xiang

    Is this still hold in modern world??
    This is pretty much hold in ancient society. Wealth usually doesn't last more than 3 generations. Somehow the third generation will screw up everything.

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    Senior Member KeongJai's Avatar
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    I've heard a similar story but I've been told in our family it's every 2 generations. My aunt said her grandfather worked hard and got rich. Her father lived the high life and didn't leave much behind (but he died aged 56 so probably could have made more money. Or wasted more for that matter). She said my father works hard and me and my siblings will be the lazy generation who wastes all the money.

    I think the 3 generations saying only worked in ancient times because of social instability and bigger gap of distribution of wealth. If you get too rich, lower class people rob you, other rich plot against you. Now there's less lower class because there's a huge middle class.
    Last edited by KeongJai; 12-10-08 at 02:40 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KeongJai View Post
    I've heard a similar story but I've been told in our family it's every 2 generations. My aunt said her grandfather worked hard and got rich. Her father lived the high life and didn't leave much behind (but he died aged 56 so probably could have made more money. Or wasted more for that matter). She said my father works hard and me and my siblings will be the lazy generation who wastes all the money.

    I think the 3 generations saying only worked in ancient times because of social instability and bigger gap of distribution of wealth. If you get too rich, lower class people rob you, other rich plot against you. Now there's less lower class because there's a huge middle class.
    I think it's still pretty much hold in the developing (third) world where there are still high level of corruption and power abuse. It doesn't seem to hold in first world countries where society is ruled by laws

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    Senior Member KeongJai's Avatar
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    and people are more educated in developed nations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KeongJai View Post
    I think the 3 generations saying only worked in ancient times because of social instability and bigger gap of distribution of wealth. If you get too rich, lower class people rob you, other rich plot against you. Now there's less lower class because there's a huge middle class.
    I don't think it's this reason that the proverb came about. I think the reason for this proverb is because of the different attitudes of the generations.

    Generation #1: Started out poor and work his way up to accumulate all the wealth. Because he has experienced hardship before, he's more mature and have the attitude to succeed.
    Generation #2: When he was a kid, his father most probably hasn't became rich yet. Thus, he has gone through hard times and seen how hard his father work. So, he most probably will also acquire the attitude to succeed although not as much as his father.
    Generation #3: He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He never experiences hardships. His parents gave him the best and he most probably was sheltered and pampered. So, he did not have as strong a mind and attitude to succeed.

    So, the family's wealth gone in the 3rd generation.
    Last edited by kidd; 12-10-08 at 12:16 PM.
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    Senior Member jadebunny9's Avatar
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    Well good thing all the generations above me are poor.



    But that means there's a good chance I'll be poor too. =\

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    Quote Originally Posted by jadebunny9 View Post
    Well good thing all the generations above me are poor.



    But that means there's a good chance I'll be poor too. =\
    Lol, but you have nothing to lose.

    I am 2nd generation as should most Asian immigrants of our generation.

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    Yittzy, are your parents wealthy?

    Kidd's explanation pretty much nails it. Although I'm seeing more 2-generation rule. Might have to do with the trend of delayed marriage and having kids AFTER getting the career on track? Also the trend of putting child as the center of attention... I know a number of naive 2nd generation who have absolutely no idea what financial planning is about.

    How the parents became well-off is important too. My parents grew up poor, studied hard and became professionals. So academic achievement is strongly emphasized within my family. In other families where the parents are successful in business, they don't care as much about their kid's degree, but rather want them to start learning in the family business asap.
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    Senior Member yittz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by expression View Post
    Yittzy, are your parents wealthy?

    Kidd's explanation pretty much nails it. Although I'm seeing more 2-generation rule. Might have to do with the trend of delayed marriage and having kids AFTER getting the career on track? Also the trend of putting child as the center of attention... I know a number of naive 2nd generation who have absolutely no idea what financial planning is about.

    How the parents became well-off is important too. My parents grew up poor, studied hard and became professionals. So academic achievement is strongly emphasized within my family. In other families where the parents are successful in business, they don't care as much about their kid's degree, but rather want them to start learning in the family business asap.
    Wealth is all relative. They still won't pay for my degrees. I agree I should pay for the second one, but the first one should be 1/3, 1/3 and 1/3.

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    Senior Member Guo Xiang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidd View Post
    I don't think it's this reason that the proverb came about. I think the reason for this proverb is because of the different attitudes of the generations.

    Generation #1: Started out poor and work his way up to accumulate all the wealth. Because he has experienced hardship before, he's more mature and have the attitude to succeed.
    Generation #2: When he was a kid, his father most probably hasn't became rich yet. Thus, he has gone through hard times and seen how hard his father work. So, he most probably will also acquire the attitude to succeed although not as much as his father.
    Generation #3: He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He never experiences hardships. His parents gave him the best and he most probably was sheltered and pampered. So, he did not have as strong a mind and attitude to succeed.

    So, the family's wealth gone in the 3rd generation.
    That's correct for how the proverb came about (at least to me).

    Seen too many third-generation brats around, and the fourth-generation are worse.

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    Senior Member Ren Ying Ying's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jadebunny9 View Post
    Well good thing all the generations above me are poor.

    But that means there's a good chance I'll be poor too. =\
    or...you'll be the one that strikes it rich!


    on the topic though, what about middle class? Will they stay middle class forever?

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    Senior Member jiang bao's Avatar
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    The "3rd" thing is just thrown in there for convenience, but eventually someone will squander the family wealth. You see that very clearly in Chinese dynasties, just to name one example. Of course, the very system of dynastic rule was dumb. After the first few emperors, subsequent guys usually give in to hedonism and forget about governing?
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    Quote Originally Posted by jiang bao View Post
    The "3rd" thing is just thrown in there for convenience, but eventually someone will squander the family wealth. You see that very clearly in Chinese dynasties, just to name one example. Of course, the very system of dynastic rule was dumb. After the first few emperors, subsequent guys usually give in to hedonism and forget about governing?
    Well, there are exception but it's true for the vast majority in ancient society and developing/thirdworld countries. Yes, there will be a guy who will give in to hedonsim and eventually destroy most/all the wealth. Typically, this guy has never experienced any hardship in his life.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Trien Chieu View Post
    Well, there are exception but it's true for the vast majority in ancient society and developing/thirdworld countries. Yes, there will be a guy who will give in to hedonsim and eventually destroy most/all the wealth. Typically, this guy has never experienced any hardship in his life.
    Why exclude developed countries? Don't tell me people in developed countries have all achieved enlightenment and don't indulge in hedonism.
    什麼是朋友?朋友永遠是在你犯下不可原諒錯誤的時候,仍舊站在你那邊的笨蛋。~ 王亞瑟

    和諧唔係一百個人講同一番話,係一百個人有一百句唔同嘅說話,而又互相尊重 ~ - 葉梓恩

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    Quote Originally Posted by kidd View Post
    Why exclude developed countries? Don't tell me people in developed countries have all achieved enlightenment and don't indulge in hedonism.
    People in developed countries do indulge in hedonism but in lesser number and lesser extend. The percentage that being wealthy beyond third generation is much much higher than ancient society and developing/thirdworld countries.

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    This doesn't apply to the Rothchilds nor the Rockerfellers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trien Chieu View Post
    People in developed countries do indulge in hedonism but in lesser number and lesser extend. The percentage that being wealthy beyond third generation is much much higher than ancient society and developing/thirdworld countries.
    Sure.

    I'm just gonna sit back and watch your beloved American empire collapse (like, right now) from indulging in hedonism.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Candide View Post
    Sure.

    I'm just gonna sit back and watch your beloved American empire collapse (like, right now) from indulging in hedonism.
    Despite facing difficult time, the US is still among the best place to live in the world. Is any asian here who currently living in the US want to move back to their mother land? Candide, do you?

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    You're assuming I only have a choice between America and my motherland. You're also assuming that I'm living in America.

    Get your head out of Uncle Sam's arse. There are plenty of places in the world that are better than America to live in.
    "Anything you can't say NO to is your MASTER, and you are its SLAVE."

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    Mercer's world's best places to live in: (since are on the topic, of course it's just another ranking you could choose to ignore)

    1. Zurich
    2. Vienna
    2. Geneva
    4. Vancouver
    5. Auckland
    6. Dusseldorf
    7. Munich
    8. Frankfurt
    9. Bern
    10. Sydney
    11. Copenhagen
    12. Wellington
    13. Amsterdam
    14. Brussels
    15. Toronto
    16. Berlin
    17. Melbourne
    17. Luxembourg
    19. Ottawa
    20. Stockholm
    .
    .
    .
    28. Honolulu

    Europe has 13 concentrated in that small area of central europe. Canada has 3, Australia 2, New Zealand 2. The best of US is in Hawaii.

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