Seeing The Forest for the Trees

The Rich vs The Rest of Us

And yet another study to back-slap us with something we already know – the rich are getting outrageously richer.

Collectively, U.S. millionaires will go from $39 trillion to $87 trillion in wealth by 2020, according to a study the Deloitte Center for Financial Services and Oxford Economics released recently.

The rest of us? Not a damn thing coming besides the anxiety of keeping a job, losing a job, keeping a home, losing a home and hoping that we can stay out of debt & maintain the little wealth we’ve accumulated. Studies like these prove to me that there is something seriously wrong with the “system”. I’ve received many e-mails from folks from all over, especially from here in the U.S, who argue that the system works if one works hard enough & makes sacrifices, but the facts scream, “It just aint so!”.

According to the study, there are nearly 7.8 million households in America with $1 million to $5 million in assets, 2.3 million households with $5 million to $30 million and 496,000 households with more than $30 million. OK, there are over 308 million people in the U.S, so that leaves…where’s my calculator…..approximately 225 million of us (not including children which number about 73 million) outside the gates of luxury cars, penthouse lofts w/ private sky decks & multiple income producing assets that propel the rich further into the stratosphere (Deloitte projects the assets of these millionaire households will more than double by 2020).

It’s one thing for one to work hard, save & invest wisely & make the necessary sacrifices in order to gain financial security. Granted, there are many of us who have done so, but the playing field is so heavily skewed towards those who already have ample assets, opportunities &/or connections, that it makes no sense to me to argue that just anybody can be the next millionaire–a thousandnaire, more likely. Yes, one or 2 may make it to upper echelons of wealth & privilege, but the vast majority of us will not & it’s not because we’re lazy, under-achieving &/or dim-witted. The truth is that the “system” has been rigged against us (from education to taxes to health care) & people the world over have caught on to it (in the U.S, less so) & are demanding a overhaul of this shabby state of affairs. It’s amazing how the few endeavor to amass so much in the midst of untold suffering & still have the gall to expect low tax rates, downplay workers’ rights, attack the social safety net & poison the environment to boot!

When I was a kid, I used to read Richie Rich comics & marveled at the money bursting from every crevice of his surroundings–stuffed in mattresses, in canyons, under hills. etc. Money was everywhere and this little white boy could do as he pleased. Many of the stories revolved around greedy miscreants trying to get at his wealth, but he always prevailed. I eventually tired of this character & often fantasized about stomping on his rich, pampered ass! Fast forward to the present, the feelings are still the same, only now the characters are real. ‘Richie Rich’, watch your back! The people want their money back!



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