“In a country well governed poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed wealth is something to be ashamed of.” — Confucius
Share the Confucius Money quote image above on your site:
Short Link to this Quote:
In this quote, Confucius seems to be contrasting how poverty and wealth should be viewed depending on the quality of a country’s governance. He suggests that in a society with just, competent leadership where people’s basic needs are met, citizens should feel ashamed to be poor as it may indicate a lack of diligent self-improvement or contribution.
However, Confucius also notes that wealth attained under corrupt or ineffective rule should itself be a source of embarrassment, as it likely stemmed from exploiting loopholes, unfair advantages or instability rather than meritocratic means.
Overall, the quote conveys Confucius’ view that a government’s performance establishes the appropriate social and ethical context for evaluating people’s economic conditions – and that self-sufficiency is an ideal under good governance, while accumulations may not be rightfully earned under bad leadership.