Debate Magazine

How To Become a Millionaire (Part Two)

By Eowyn @DrEowyn


In Part One of this series, we looked at Mr. and Mrs. Le Van Vu, Vietnamese refugees that arrived in the United States flat broke and unable to speak a word of English, yet they became multi-millionaires by applying simple success principles. Today, we will examine just what those principles are that enabled the Van Vu’s to acquire such great wealth. (If you haven’t read Part One, you can find it here: Along with an excellent post by Dr. Eowyn:


The first principle is family. When the Van Vu’s first arrived in this country, they were taken in by Le’s cousin in Houston who allowed them to sleep on sacks of sawdust in the back room of a bakery. Even though the Van Vu’s had not seen their cousins for years, possibly decades, because they were family, the cousins offered a helping hand. How many families do you know who would do the same?

The family unit is the basic structure of civilization, and it has been so since time began. The easiest way to undermine a society is to undermine the family, a tactic that the Left, particularly the Democratic Party, has employed with tremendous success through abortion, feminism, welfare, racism, divorce, and poverty.

Extending the family principle further, the Van Vu’s were a married couple that stuck together. They didn’t bicker and quarrel. They knew that if they were to achieve the American dream, they simply couldn’t afford to argue.

Many American couples argue over money. Usually one party wants to spend money while the other party wants to save money. Then they go to divorce court and fight tooth and nail to soak as much money out of the other party as possible. It’s a behavior that society seems to glorify. The Van Vu’s provide a textbook example of how strong the family unit can be when both parties are united in love and a common bond.

The second and third principles the Van Vu’s employed were saving money and living below their means. They cut their overhead to the absolute minimum and saved as much money as was humanly possible. Most Americans never bother to save any money. They’re too busy spending their money on smart phones, video games, clothes, junk food, gossip magazines, cigarettes, new cars, makeup, sporting events, cable television, and on and on. These actions doom them to poverty, which the government is only too happy to support through food stamps, welfare, section 8, and other handouts.

The Van Vu’s saved an incredible 98% of their income. (If you wonder how this is possible, please go back and read Part One in this series.) And they did this for three years! Saving money allowed them to buy their own business and put them on the path to prosperity.

Saving money is mentioned in the Bible. It’s seen in nature by many species, particularly squirrels. It’s the first and most vital step mentioned in the classic book “The Richest Man in Babylon,” and the most important principle in John McCormack and David R. Legge’s “Self-Made in America,” where the Van Vu story first appeared. Want to become a millionaire? Saving money and living below your means appears to be the very first step.

The fourth principle used by the Van Vu’s is self-reliance and responsibility. As refugees from war-torn Vietnam, they could have easily gone on the government dole, but they refused to do it. They relied on themselves, not the government. In today’s society, such behavior is considered dangerous. The government, under our current administration, hates self-reliance and responsibility. They actually reward government employees for signing up as many people as possible on food stamps. (I’m not making this up.)

Accepting “free” government handouts is like taking money from the Mafia. It looks free, but there’s always a price to pay. And, worst of all, it destroys the will and the spirit to achieve.

A fifth principle employed by the Van Vu’s was kindness. John McCormack mentioned how Lee Van Vu would approach him every morning with a smile on his face, and how they communicated through sign language even though neither could speak the other’s language. Where there is kindness, there is usually also humility and gratitude. Can someone become rich without being kind, humble, and thankful? Absolutely. Our society is full of people like that. I’ve met many. Inside, they are all miserable.

Principle number six was old-fashioned hard work. Hard work and pride in one’s work has been in decline in our country for years. I buy something at Walgreens and two weeks later it falls apart. I buy something in another store and the person at the register plops the change back in my hand and either says nothing or says, “Here you go.” I call a business and I’m put on hold for minutes before I’m finally able to speak to someone overseas who has difficulty understanding what I’m saying.

The Van Vu’s were not afraid to work long hours in order to make their business a success. Compare them to the millions of Americans who prefer to sit on the couch, watching bad television and eating bad food, while they collect their government welfare checks and food stamps.

Finally, although this principle is not mentioned in the Van Vu story, I would bet money that they also used prayer. To live through the ordeals they encountered, to face death and economic devastation, would break the spirit of anyone who did not have a deep and enduring faith in God and all that He offers us.


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