Disclaimer: I don’t know if this topic is particularly objective – it’s simply a question I am putting forth for the sake of feedback because I have no idea if my opinion is founded in reality or skewed by confirmation bias.
It always bugs me when I hear wealthy rightwingers tout the merits of “taking a risk” by getting out there and starting a new business (and in turn becoming rich off it).
What I notice (at least in my experience) is that the kids who got out there and took risks in making their own startups are precisely the kinds of kids who aren’t really exposed to the downsides of their own risks in the first place. I know the pitfalls of anecdotes as an argumentative tool, but I will share one to explain what I mean here:
I have a friend who comes from a wealthy family. Had his schooling paid for so he did not have any debt upon graduation. He must have torn through at least 10 startup ideas, and every one of them failed. However, he was only able to do this because he was wealthy in the first place and could afford to take the risk.
Contrast that to someone like me. I had to pay for my own education, and graduated with lots of debt. Lenders wish to be paid back very promptly, and typically, the monthly installments are not comfortable. Had I taken a risk like that and invested money (that I didn’t have) into a business idea and have it fail? I’d be on the streets. It’s much more realistic to simply go work for someone else who’s already established (typically a firm).
In other words, it really irks me when people claim they “took risks” in starting their own business because I feel like, much of the time, they had some sort of safety net that would pad their downside in the first place, thereby allowing them to take that risk without worry. Without that safety net, starting one’s own business is orders of magnitude harder.
Now, I could be TOTALLY OFF here, and if so, I’d appreciate some clarification. Otherwise, thoughts?