Why billionaire Ken Langone was inspired to write "I Love Capitalism!"

Ken Langone on why capitalism works
Ken Langone on why capitalism works 06:21

Business icon Ken Langone is on Forbes magazine's list of the richest people in the world, but he insists he is not a self-made success. Langone, who grew up in a working class family in Roslyn Heights, New York, first made a name for himself on Wall Street, as billionaire Ross Perot's banker. He would go on to co-found Home Depot, one of America's largest retailers.

Langone joined "CBS This Morning" to discuss the memoir he wrote about his unique path to success called "I Love Capitalism! An American Story."


"I'm far from self-made, starting with my parents. Humble, uneducated, great, great capacity for unconditional love," Langone told "CBS This Morning" on Thursday.

The billionaire had been approached many times to make his life story into a book and turned them all down until the 2016 presidential election. He said he was bothered by the new generation of young people who were gravitating toward Sen. Bernie Sanders.

"Because they hadn't even started and they were quitting," he said. "I think the more we can do for ourselves, the better we are. Remember this, somebody who gets a check from the government and does nothing for it, you're taking away from them, in my opinion, self-respect."

While Langone might have been bothered by Sanders' supporters, the politician and businessmen do agree on something – income inequality in America is a problem.  

"The biggest challenge to America in my opinion is income inequality. If we don't fix income inequality you know what happens? Cuba happens, Venezuela happens, Russia happens," he said. "The point is, we've got to help these people, but the best way out is to offer them opportunities where they can develop not only their own skills but their sense of self-worth. When you take away from me my sense of personal belief in myself, nothing is left."