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Conservatives or Liberals: Who Give More? Part II

By Thomas J. Stanley on Jul 21st, 2011 in Studying the Wealthy

Why are liberals less productive in transforming their income into wealth than conservatives?  For many high income producing liberals their capital is their high intellect.  Or as one liberal respondent, a high income producing physician, said:  “[money] income is the most easily renewable resource.”  This liberal Phi Beta Kappa, Regent’s Scholar, cum laude graduate never had trouble perpetually generating a high income. 

But “if you’re not intellectually gifted or your academic record is mediocre, you can survive in a competitive world by working very hard for yourself and building wealth.  Wealth can offset . . . so-called inferior intellect and provide protection from a hostile environment.” [The Millionaire Mind, p. 107]  Correspondingly, conservatives who achieve millionaire status are much more likely than liberals to indicate that they have a uncontrollable need to succeed [financially].

 People such as the millionaire next door types who have a high propensity to accumulate wealth typically donate a larger percentage of their income than others in the same age and income cohort who accumulate less.  Within the high income population wealth is a better predictor of giving to noble causes than is realized income.  But there are exceptions, as in the case of Vivian highlighted in the previous blog

Some may argue that liberals are selfish since overall they do spend more money on themselves and less on others.  Part of that is a function of where they live. High income liberals are highly concentrated in the Northeast where the cost of living is significantly higher than in the South or Midwest.  High income producing conservatives in contrast are most highly concentrated in the South and the Midwest.  

What about differences in happiness, that is, satisfaction with life?  Overall, high income conservatives are significantly happier than high income liberals.  In harmony with this finding, those who give more are happier than those who give less.  Also, liberals are not content with the way things are.  In part this could be expected given the fact that they tend to live above their means and to surround themselves with people who have significantly more wealth than they do. 

Perhaps it is envy that underlies the need of these people to promote the so-called redistribution of wealth by having those who are more productive in transforming income into wealth allocate a greater proportion of their considerable wealth to the federal coffers.  I guess the term ironic applies here.  Those who are among the least productive in accumulating wealth in spite of their high incomes advocate that the wealthy “donate” more.

Often highly compensated liberals think of themselves as leaders of provocative thoughts.  Their ideas are often more academic than practical.  They have an unrealistic view of the importance of their theories and the validity of their ideas.  In many ways they do not accurately comprehend what it means to be wealthy or why people strive to become financially independent.

9 responses to “Conservatives or Liberals: Who Give More? Part II”

  1. Lived around too many rabid liberals... says:

    Last paragraph is PERFECT! I’ll be laughing about that one for hours!

  2. John says:

    Phenomenal article. Interesting, but not surprising.

  3. cc croot says:

    I have found that people who are successful at a business tend to play well with others. I think that the golden rule – do unto to others as you would have them do unto you is critical. Many highly intelligent people have poor interpersonal skills. An extension of this is donating to help others.

  4. Amen says:

    Wow! Honesty like that will get you put on the Terror Watch List. lol! Exactly the conclusions I’ve drawn in my interaction with various groups. Ironically, these same smug geniuses who live beyond their means because they are worth it, are the ones screaming to redistribute from the rich because it’s not fair for them (Toyota driving, small house living…)to have money when more worthy (McMansion living, Beamer driving…) are broke. So as the conservatives continue to LBYM, they should pay more to keep the high lifestyle for these poor unfortunates. Who’s the genius now?

  5. Lynsey says:

    It was dark when I woke. This is a ray of suhnsine.

  6. john says:

    Honestly dont know if this article is to bash liberals or its intention. I will say that I live in an ultra conservative area and I find these types of people to be the most self centered egotistical people ive ever met. They are hate mongers and dont care if other people starve to death. They are happier because they dont care about what happens to others only themselves

  7. Some of this could be true but... says:

    I live in the so-called “high income liberal Northeast” area and I can tell you that I do NOT think it is underlying envy that causes liberals around here to want redistribution of wealth. Many people here wish to have this money redistributed to those who desperately need it most, not to add to their own middle incomes. I can honestly say that these people do have a heart and concern for others. I can’t speak for the Conservative South or Midwest, but only from my experiences here.

  8. Baden says:

    My son recently participated in a fundraiser for an inner city Boy Scout troup. He sent out emails to friends and family asking to sponsor him for miles hiked in one day. The request went to 8 conservatives and 2 liberals. He raised over $1,000 from the conservatives and $10 from the liberals.

  9. Stan says:

    Liberals do not build wealth or share it, they just want to take it; especially from conservative who are proud to be Americans.

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