100 kids with 100 toys in a big room. Shrieks of joy. Kids running everywhere. Playing, laughing, squeals of delight. Everyone has a toy, everyone is having fun.
What if those 100 kids represent all the people of the United States and those 100 toys represent all the wealth and all the income of our country?
Everybody is in the same room but everything has changed. No shouts of joy, no laughter.
There is one very rich kid in the corner hoarding a pile of 40 toys. There are nine “upper middle class” rich kids circled around him hogging a total of another 40 toys. Combined these ten rich kids have 80 of the 100 toys.
The next 50 kids share 20 toys. They are the middle class.
Finally, there are 40 working class kids that don’t have any toys at all—actually they owe a toy to the one rich kid.
Life would be very different if we all shared equally.
The 325 Million people of the United States produce nearly 20 Trillion dollars of income every year. Credit Suisse estimates that we have a combined net worth (what we own less what we owe) of 94 Trillion dollars…and none of these counts what the rich have secretly hidden away in overseas tax heavens.
Sharing equally, every family of four would have a yearly income of over $240,000 per year and a net worth of over $1,000,000.
We are all rich if we share.
The decision about how we share ultimately comes from the people. It is a political decision.
The rich are only rich if we let them be.
My thanks to— and links for further information:
Wealth, Income, and Power, by G. William Domhoff for his analysis of US Census and Federal Reserve household income and wealth reports http://whorulesamerica.net/power/wealth.html (retrieved June 16, 2018)
Credit Suisse for their annual global wealth report https://www.credit-suisse.com/corporate/en/research/research-institute/global-wealth-report.html
Dariel Garner is the person who inspired Rivera Sun’s novel Billionaire Buddha. A story about a man that created an enormous fortune but turned his back on wealth when he realized that great wealth was destroying him and the planet.
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