Comparison Unlimited

Comparison Unlimited


Bill Gates has been the world’s richest man. Any other billionaire would be poor by comparison. The scale of comparison is unlimited, and is no basis to gauge the wealth of a person. By the same token, it is grossly unfair to measure the intelligence of a person in his own field of specialization with another in a different order. In layman’s terms, how can you compare an orange with an apple?


Rich or poor is relative. Nobody can live the same lifestyle like Bill Gates. no matter whether in the millionaire or billionaire category. By Bill Gates’ standard, a farmer living in the rural sector may be considered poor. But by his own standard, though lacking the modern amenities, he’s self-sufficient, contented and happy. Wealth can be in the form of the intangibles – contentment, happiness, fulfillment, peace and harmony. It is said the best things in life are free, and free from worry and care.

In this modern age, we tend to measure success in terms of wealth. What then is success? By definition, I would say that success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal. The basis of measurement in terms of money is unsatisfactory as the degree or scale of comparison has limitless end. Our late Kerry Packer could not match up with the Microsoft giant. On his own in Australia, he was the richest man. The Chinese has a saying about comparing the loftiness of mountains.

To the musician his worthy ideal would mean having the honour of performing in Carnegie Hall to a great audience. A scientist’s success could mean the attainment of a Nobel Prize. An athlete’s thrill lies in his achieving Olympic Gold medals. These three categories of men are all successful in their own rights, though not so much in monetary terms.

There is a pyramid of hierarchy towards which men aspire. However, like climbing Mt. Everest, there’s no end in the fields of human endeavour. Realistically, not all can achieve such great heights. The fundamental rule in human living is to live as best as you could according to your” needs”. When it comes to” wants” there can be no end! Can you be happy with a million or a billion?

Paul Chong

A Chinese by Descent

An Australian by Consent

A Man’s Success

A Man’s Success


Deng Xiaoping

The rich & famous are not necessarily great men. Some may be born

great or have greatness thrust upon them, but true greatness is through

personal achievement. Attaining wealth is not life’s only goal. it is however welcome as a by-product.

Capitalism may well lead to the moral degradation of the society.

The Mainland Chinese, as advocated by Deng Xiaoping, are driven

towards wealth & capitalism. Singaporeans are less in the same hot pursuit.

A man’s success in life is not only measured in the accumulation of wealth. If wealth is the basis, you can’t even compare Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, or Mahatma Gandhi with Mao Zedong. All of them are or were great and successful in life, but for very different reasons.

There are other intrinsic values to be considered, beyond the materialistic realm that the capitalistic world craved. These far outreaching values encompass many areas:

1. a man’s strength of character substantiated by

basic human goodness

2. faith & courage

3. philosophy & humulity

4. vision & creativeness

5. persistence & tenancity

6. talents

A man is thus judged by a composite set of values. Basically, for the great majority, one can succeed beyond all measures when he fulfills his role and responsibilities as a son, husband, father, grandfather and hopefully great- grandfather. You don’t have to be rich to feel fulfilled and happy. After all riches will not follow you to eternity, but a rich legacy ensures posterity in perpetuity.

Paul Chong

A Chinese by Descent

An Australian by Consent

Money & Wealth

Money & Wealth


Two little key words to distinguish: need & want.

The first refers to a specific basic life’s necessity with varying limitations, but

want encompasses insatiable limits tending towards obsessive greed without creed.

Money is the root of all evils, so the famous saying goes. It is so claimed more by those particularly without money than by others who are wealthy. The fact of the matter is, it is our own doing with money that becomes our own undoing. Money by itself is not evil. How can it? It has no mind, will or desire on its own. It’s what you do with money that counts. You’ve got to be its master and not the slave to it.

Money is important, unless you’re living in the primitive world. In the modern world everything is run on money. Modern economy & our very existence revolve around money, without which all economic activities will come to a standstill. Remember money cannot buy you happiness, love, respect or honour (which must be earned), but the lack of it will make you miserably so.

What is money? Money is simply a means of exchange – be it in paper form or metal or even plastic material as credit & debit cards. With credit cards it needs to be emphasized about budget control. It’s so very easy to freely sign your life away charging all your purchases or services to your credit card. You can’t spend like hell and still hope to be swell. There’s always the question of payment. You’ve got to be in control especially when tempting offers seem to be overpowering.

Remember whatever you want – money, respect, honour, love or power, they’re all in the hands of others. Consequently, you need to earn them from others through some forms of service.

Before you can accumulate money, you’ve got to be money conscious, that is, to be aware of money forms. Everything is in the form of money – a house, a car, a holiday etc. Taking a step further, differentiate a lump of coal with a precious piece of diamond. Basically, they are of the same constituents, but structurally different. Diamond is the result of enormous pressure over a long passage of time. So if you want more money, you’ve got to put in more effort & time. There is no question of less work & more pay. Rewards are qualitatively & quantitatively measured.

Making money is one of the easiest things in the world – if you know how & if that’s what you want. Cash is the effect of a cause. You reap what you sow. What you sow must be in qualitative & quantitative terms. So consider first in rendering a truly valuable service, both qualitatively & quantitatively, before thinking of a bountiful harvest. Even in selling a product, the question of service is all important.

You can make money through the sale of an idea. Ideas in essence make money. Some of the richest & most successful men in the world began with a simple idea, for example, Colonel Saunders of Kentucky Fried Chicken. You’ll never know how valuable your ideas can be. Dr. Napoleon Hill of “Think & Grow Rich” fame says this:

“Whatever the mind of men can conceive & believe, it can achieve.”

So have faith in your ideas & you can build a fortune on them.

If making money is relatively simple, how come most people end in life missing the financial boat. The truth of the matter is we must plan & learn how to save. For the majority, it is only the question of spending. To them, the philosophy is money is no good unless you can spend it. True, you’ve got to be able to spend, but within budget.

A simple lesson in money management is:

  1. Pay yourself first by saving 10%. In so doing, you’re creating a good

    habit, which will give you a sense of financial security. You will be amazed what you can achieve if you establish such a habit. Remember, you deserve to be paid – don’t just pay others.

  2. Set 20% of what you make for the creditors. This could mean paying off your credit card & other debts without jeopardising your own financial situation.

  3. Last but not least, 70% of your money will go towards your day to day expenses.

The above formula is simple but it is executing it that is difficult. Consider a young person starting off life at age 25 and in 40 years time what sort of financial bounty will he be reaping if he can execute this simple formula & stick by it. In terms of mere savings, not even considering the return from investment, on the basis of an annual income of just $25,000 (and for simplicity stays fixed for 40 years), if he pays himself 10%, he could easily end up with $100,000. Believe you me, a lot of people won’t have that to show. The success of a person is not measured so much by the amount he makes but more so by the amount he saves.

Remember we all have the freedom to work for others or to have others work for us, & ultimately to have money working for us. Top have money working for us,we do not necessary depend entirely on our own money. We can always employ the principle of O.P.M., i.e. Other People’s Money. The banks and other financial institutions utilise this principle. They all you a lesser interest than the interest they accrue through their investments or from others. Similarly, make sure your return is higher than what you have to pay for financing your project.

In money management, more must come in & less to go out. I can also recall when working as a manager for the American International Assurance, my managing director used to say: “live five years below your budget. We would not like to be a scrooge, but budgeting is very important.

However, don’t be obsessed with money or status. Making money is not the be all & end all. Greed often sets in with lots of business people & you soon become a question of being possessed by your possession. It does not matter to these unscrupulous people how many money is made, morally or immorally, legally or illegally. The object of the bottom line blurs out all other considerations or consequences. Some of these people camouflage their misdeeds by being philanthropic. This tantamount to laundering evil money through charity & hopefully people will be blind in the process. There is the danger of entrapping yourself & be oblivious to all sense of value. Wealth is relative – there is no end to wanting more of it.

To be a millionaire, you’ve got to have a millionaire mentality. Winning money through lottery or lotto will not make you one. In fact, money coming in an easy way will just as easy go out. Have a good investment sense & invest wisely.

God created us in a world full of abundance. We are the most unique creatures of all His creations – being created essentially in His own image. As such, you should have all the necessary skills to make it in life. There is no justification or rationalisation for missing out the financial boat in life. Begin to believe that you have the ability & capacity to make your dream come true. Build from within yourself that internal desire to achieve that great wealth.

images-1isWarren Buffet  images

Bill Gates                                               Li Ka-shing

If you are one of those gifted people with some special talents, you are more than certain to be on the road to riches. You could, for instance, be a singing star or a sporting talent like Tiger Woods or even Greg Norman. In a different league, people like Bill Gates, Warren Buffet or Li Ka-shing are exceptional wealthy billionaires. They all possess a mentality way above that of the average rich guy.

Paul Chong

Sunday, 2 August 2009