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» babble   » right brain babble   » culture   » are the 'wealthy' really worth the price?

   
Author Topic: are the 'wealthy' really worth the price?
otter
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12062

posted 09 April 2006 09:07 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post
While in another thread i got the idea that this thought needed to be explored in it's own thread.

There is so much chest thumping being done about the 'wealthy' that it seems important to point out that there are a lot of 'wealthy' people who got there by nefarious means.

Consider the Soprano-type crowd all around this planet who make their wealthy by the illicit drug trade, weapons deals, slavery, child labour, prositution and dozens of other criminal enterprises.

Then there are all the retired ex freedom fighter/gang members like the contras in Nicuragua, IRA in Ireland, bandit leaders in Afghanistan, Somolia and Haiti, Aaian triads, free lance mercenaries and dozens of others who got wealthy from pretending they were 'good guys' while others freely admitted they were merely thugs.

Oh ya, we should never don't forget the intenational ex-leaders that plundered the wealth of their nations and then fled the country, like Somoza, Marcos, Duvallier, Salinas and scores of others, along with their underlings and family members who profited from the corruption.

Then there are all the 'legitimate' plunderers such as junk bond dealers, corporate raiders, pension fund skimmers, real estate scammers, renovation ripoffs, telemarketing con men and investment scheme defrauders to name just a few.

Perhaps if the wealthy want social acceptance they should be made to first disclose just how and where they got all that dough they are wallowing in.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
No Yards
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posted 09 April 2006 09:23 PM      Profile for No Yards   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
We just need to do a little "fiscal profiling" and start pulling the rich over for "driving while rich". After all, it's more likely that if you use your policing resources for profiling and investigating your average broker coming out of the Stock Exchange building your a lot more likely to find someone committing a criminal act than spending the same amount of resources pulling over black kids at Jane and Finch.

When I first came to Toronto in the late 80's and early 90's. I used to work near King and Bay, and many nights after work, myself and a couple of fellow single friends would end up in the underground, in a little place under the TSE called Sammy's Exchange. A bar where all the Brokers would go after the markets closed to relax, get drunk, snort a little coke and brag about the money they made from their latest questionable deal.

I don't think I ever met a broker that really shouldn't be doing 5 to 10 in a federal pen ... of course, corporate crime doesn't hurt anyone ... right?


From: Defending traditional marriage since June 28, 2005 | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
lucas
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posted 09 April 2006 09:52 PM      Profile for lucas     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
You were both kidding ... right?

Please tell me you don't actually believe what you've written.

Wow, talk about stereotypes.

Are you sure you weren't be sarcastic?

[ 09 April 2006: Message edited by: lucas ]


From: Turner Valley | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
otter
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12062

posted 09 April 2006 10:35 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
"driving while rich"
I love it. Thanks for the chuckles

From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
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posted 10 April 2006 03:13 AM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by lucas:

You were both kidding ... right? Please tell me you don't actually believe what you've written. Wow, talk about stereotypes. Are you sure you weren't be sarcastic?


I don't see any problem with what they wrote.

From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
No Yards
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posted 10 April 2006 11:18 AM      Profile for No Yards   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by lucas:
You were both kidding ... right?

Please tell me you don't actually believe what you've written.

Wow, talk about stereotypes.

Are you sure you weren't be sarcastic?

[ 09 April 2006: Message edited by: lucas ]



Serious as all hell. You think Gordon Gekko was characterized as a stock broker to protect the reputation of the arms industry?


From: Defending traditional marriage since June 28, 2005 | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Facilitator Peter
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posted 05 May 2006 10:41 PM      Profile for Facilitator Peter   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Attaining wealth can be compared to shooting someone. It is not the act that is evil, or benign or desirable. It is the conditions under which the act is carried out.

If the wealth was attained by improving a product or producing a desirable product or creating something that people want or need for legimate reasons (rather than doing evil to create the need) or by helping people. Then this person has earned their wealth and should be respected. If this person foolishly wastes his/her money then that which was desirably earned will disappear. If you are threatened with death if you do not do, as someone tells you to do and you get the chance of killing that person, in this case by shooting him/her. Then that is a act of protection that is desirable to all of mankind. If a person tells you that if you do not shoot another person he/she will kill both of your children and then you, and you shoot this inoccent person, this is not an act of evil by the person doing the shooting, but an act of evil by the one threatening to kill the children. So you can clearly see that is not the act that is evil it is the circumstances upon which the act took place.

People earn money some spend it foolishly some spent it wisely. God punishes the foolish and rewards the wise. Anyone who feels the wise should be penalized is just plain jealous.

Jealously is always the mark of a "Coward" Read the Sermon "Potentially the most Dangerous Human - The "Coward" also the Sermon "Why God Has Punished Us With A Greedy/Corrupt Society" and finally the Sermon "The Evil of Legal Confidentially" to obtain a better understanding of the world in which we live.

Facilitator Peter To find my website click on the little man that provides my profile above this posting.


From: Richmond, BC | Registered: Apr 2006  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 06 May 2006 11:09 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post
Wealth hoarders are a blight on the planet. Billionaires are the real pariahs roaming amongst us.

Consider another point of view as offered up by Conrad Hilton of the Hilton hotel chain. The interviewer asks "Mr. Hilton, its rumoured that you make as much as one million [$1,000,000] dollars a day. Is that true?" This interviewer figured that was a heck of a lot of money. Of course back in the 80's when it was said that was, indeed, a hell of a lot of money.

To which Hilton replied "Bah, i couldn't live on a million dollars a day!". Now how tough is that?

And today there are almost 900 declared billionaires and who knows how many hidden? Each of whose lifestyle requires,,, oh say two million a day to maintain [certainly a conservative estimate].

Now how many truckloads of trees pouring out of our forests, or boatloads of fish from our waters, or sweatshop slaves toiling in anonymity are required by those lifestyles to 'get their fix'. EACH AND EVERY DAY!

And as their hunger for ever more pretense and self indulgences grows, the cost of their lifestyles continue to escalate, as well as the costs to the community. It is interesting how this dependency and 'fixing' mirrors that of the street corner junkie in practice if not in 'success'.

Put another way, 2,000 people could live very well indeed on $1,000 a day [$1,000x1,000= $2,000,000]. Or 20,000 people could have a comfortable existence on $100 a day [$100x10,000= $2,000,000].

Are you one of those people who sees the majority of economic opportunities beyond your grasp because they are hoarded by the wealthy just as they hoard the wealth that comes from it? If you are there may be some resonance here for you. If not, then you may well be on your way to becoming one of them. Or you may just be passing though.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Nanuq
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posted 07 May 2006 01:34 AM      Profile for Nanuq   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This is an issue that has come up before but wealth is a relative term. There are all too many people in the Third World who can only dream about the standard of living that we take for granted. As far as they are concerned, all those living in countries like the US and Canada consume a disproportionate share of the world's resources (and we do). It's easy to point fingers at the Paris Hiltons of the world but they aren't all that far apart from us.
From: Toronto | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 07 May 2006 02:48 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by otter:
And today there are almost 900 declared billionaires and who knows how many hidden? Each of whose lifestyle requires,,, oh say two million a day to maintain [certainly a conservative estimate].

If a person had $1 billion and was able to earn enough income (e.g., interest, dividends and/or other returns) off of that money to produce $2 million a day to spend, do you realize the person would have to have an annualized return of about 73% in order to maintain the $1 billion???

To put it another way, if you had $1 billion and you invested it at 73% for ten years, you'd have about $240 billion after ten years. By comparison, Bill Gates, the richest man in the world, has about $50 billion.

A sustained annual return of 15% is high (I'd take it in a heartbeat and so would any wall street money manager). At 15% per year and spending $2 million per day, a billionaire would be broke in less than two years.

So, to say that a billionarie could "conservatively" spend $2 million per day is laughable. Utterly laughable.

For the hell of it, assume a billionaire could either spend $2 million per day (and end up broke at the end of about 18 months) or give the money away (and end up broke at the end of 18 months). How much money would $730,000,000 spent in one year enrich the, what, six billion people of the world? Twelve cents each!!! Take that times the 900 billionaires you assume are in the world, at that would be $109.50 per person.

[ 07 May 2006: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 07 May 2006 03:03 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
By the way, a 73% return would mean that virtually everyone could be a billionaire. If you took $1,000 and invested it today at a 73% annual return, you, too, could be a billionaire...in just 25 years!!
From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Steve Tree
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posted 07 May 2006 12:21 PM      Profile for Steve Tree     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Are the wealthy worth the price? Last time I checked there were dishonest people in every walk of life. Evidently some are better than others at making money at it. There are plenty of rich people who live perfectly respectable lives, and picking on the rest is just taking advantage of the fact that they are an easy target.

Just once I'd like to see someone find a solution to societal problems that didn't start with the assumption that everyone with over "x" amount of money was evil.


From: Montréal, at the moment... | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
otter
rabble-rouser
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posted 07 May 2006 01:59 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post
Obviously this is a sore spot for some. too bad.

I know the numbers sound incredible. That is why the post was made. I know there are also people who have earned their 'wealth' by honest means. But it is still true that there are a lot more that made their wealth off exploiting the misery of others.

When Hilton said he required MORE than one million dollars a day to survive he was referring to the income required to maintain his lifestyle. This is not just interest, but all revenues sucked up each and every day in order to just "get by" and to pay for all his multi million dollar estates, his private jets, cars and yachts and all the other infrastructure that accounts for his pretensious lifestyle.

I reinterate, with all the want in the world, those who are hoarding wealth and economic opportunities are a blight on the planet.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Lard Tunderin' Jeezus
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posted 07 May 2006 02:41 PM      Profile for Lard Tunderin' Jeezus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
There is greater inequality and disparity today than has ever before existed in history. This is because class warfare continues as always - and the rich have won.

Indeed, to mention that this class warfare exists is to be labelled a lunatic - which shows how totally and effectively the forces of greed control concensus.


From: ... | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Lard Tunderin' Jeezus
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posted 07 May 2006 02:48 PM      Profile for Lard Tunderin' Jeezus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
There are plenty of rich people who live perfectly respectable lives, and picking on the rest is just taking advantage of the fact that they are an easy target.
Name five from the billionaire class. Let me point out that the dubious business practises of Bill Gates have already been discussed around here at length - as has the inherited wealth which enabled him.

From: ... | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Steve Tree
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posted 07 May 2006 02:49 PM      Profile for Steve Tree     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by otter:
Obviously this is a sore spot for some. too bad.

I know the numbers sound incredible. That is why the post was made. I know there are also people who have earned their 'wealth' by honest means. But it is still true that there are a lot more that made their wealth off exploiting the misery of others.

When Hilton said he required MORE than one million dollars a day to survive he was referring to the income required to maintain his lifestyle. This is not just interest, but all revenues sucked up each and every day in order to just "get by" and to pay for all his multi million dollar estates, his private jets, cars and yachts and all the other infrastructure that accounts for his pretensious lifestyle.

I reinterate, with all the want in the world, those who are hoarding wealth and economic opportunities are a blight on the planet.


I really think you're taking that quote too literally. And complaining about it is all well and good, but what do you propose that we do?


From: Montréal, at the moment... | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
bittersweet
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posted 07 May 2006 03:30 PM      Profile for bittersweet     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Sven: You need to be consistent with your requirement for accuracy on the effect of interest, for you've only applied it to one side of the investment coin. Your expectations are realistic when it comes to interest's effect on capital growth; the key assumption there is prudent investment. Yet when it comes to social investment, you don't assume the same prudence; you imply that a prudent investor, who'd been careful to earn a 15% return, would suddenly become incompetent. This reasoning violates the argument's logic in order to arrive at a convenient conclusion.

Just as there are effective and ineffective ways to invest money in, say, the stock market, the same game applies when investing money for social benefit. Obviously, dividing billions among the world's billions is the least effective way to invest it; no one would consider a scheme where the return on investment is so low. However, infrastructures like sanitation, housing, reliably clean water, or education or roads, or equipment necessary for use in employment such as industrial sewing machines, bakery ovens, etc.--these are the kind of projects a prudent investor would likely make because they acrue vastly more social benefit than simply handing out the money to individuals. That kind of social investment is equivalent to a relatively high interest investment applied when to capital growth.

As for the notion about the Evil rich, it's an equally ineffective point of view. The problem is obviously systemic, not with the individual wealth. It's easy to demonize individuals--some who may well deserve being demonized--but that unsophisticated approach has not, and never will, solve a single one of the world's problems. Moreover, that approach is far more vulnerable to the influence of personal weaknesses, such as a deeply conflicted attitude toward money. It's hard to hide a weak argument when it has to do with systemic analysis; on the other hand, the opinion that "the rich are bad" is virtually immune from criticism because it's not based on reason at all. Those kind of opinions obviously serve those holding them very well--yet precisely because they're all about personal benefit, they are of no help to the cause of social improvement, and in fact tend to be impediments to it.


From: land of the midnight lotus | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
Lard Tunderin' Jeezus
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posted 07 May 2006 03:39 PM      Profile for Lard Tunderin' Jeezus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
To state the obvious for some: the man spending a million dollars a day likely spends little out of his own pocket, and much through his corporate entities, as an expense for all shareholders to bear.
From: ... | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 07 May 2006 05:00 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by bittersweet:

Moreover, that approach is far more vulnerable to the influence of personal weaknesses, such as a deeply conflicted attitude toward money. It's hard to hide a weak argument when it has to do with systemic analysis; on the other hand, the opinion that "the rich are bad" is virtually immune from criticism because it's not based on reason at all. Those kind of opinions obviously serve those holding them very well--yet precisely because they're all about personal benefit, they are of no help to the cause of social improvement, and in fact tend to be impediments to it.

I couldn't disagree moreso. Of all the thirteen or so billionaire families in Canada, only one of them did not earn their first million with illegal booze. The Irving's started out as log thieves.

Money represents political power if concentrated in too few hands. The Desmarais family have been king makers in Canada. Paul Desmarais, and or Power Corp, have had direct ties to Pierre Trudeau, Brian Mulroney, Jean Chretien and Paul "Liberian Steamship Lines" Martin.

quote:
We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." - American justice, Louis Brandeis

Just think how many more millionaires there could be if we stopped concentrating vast amounts of wealth in the hands of a few.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
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posted 07 May 2006 05:09 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I just noticed that this is in the culture forum. I think I'll move it to politics instead, since this is really a political question.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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