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The rich and the hungry

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
The list of billionaires has grown according to this article. A total of 793 people are worth 2.6 trillion US dollars. That's an average of 3.38 billion each. (an interesting aside is the wealth from Walmart, where the staff is barely paid minimum wage)

What do people need 3.38 billion for? What can they do with it? How about help someone else live?

The World Food Program doesn't have enough money to complete its missions. Here is a list of its appeals for aid. Small pickin's for the rich. Why don't they help out?

 

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Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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post #2 of 27
It would take 6 billion days (~16 million years) for a Mexican worker earning minimum wage in Mexico to have as much as Slim, assuming, of course, that the worker does not spend any.
post #3 of 27
Alot of rich people do donate alot of money. We just got a $100 milliion donation to our Med School from an individual.
post #4 of 27
I feel exactly the same way. When I see rich people like toupee twat Donald Trump I'm disgusted by how they parade around as though they want credit for hoarding so much money all to themselves. I don't care how much they donate because I know that often times charitable contributions are made in the hope of getting huge tax breaks.

What would you do, pay the taxman or get some free PR by giving to charity?

I figure that most people could live comfortably throughout their entire life on about £10 million without having to work so for anyone to have more than that is just greed IMO.

What I absolutely hate most is when celebrities go on TV and tell us poor people to give them money for charity.
post #5 of 27
I think people misunderstand what the wealth really is.

Its not like its money in the bank. Its investments and often one sided investments in your own marked. Think about Bill Gates. Most of his fortune is probably on MS stocks. If they pulled it out in great figures the marked would go south and it would be difficult to find new money for investments.

So its not really liquid funds the rich folks have. Its power, but limited by marked constrains and marked logic. If they invested in stuff that had no future they would not have created anything and selling a large percentage of your stocks in a company over short time isn´t doable.

But that doesn´t mean they haven´t got any wiggle room. They could use their stocks to ensure that the "energy company" they invested in stopped searching for oil and instead looked for other types of energy sources to take one example. Its not "money in your pocket"-money. its "marked money" and it has to be used within the logic of the marked to make a difference.
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post #6 of 27
I will agree that 9 out of 10 celebrities are idiots. But I don't really see anything morally wrong about NOT giving to charity either. Not everyone is concerned with the plight of the underclass. Historically, it has not been uncommon for successful capitalists (a term I'm using to refer to people who have succeeded in creating wealth and not simply absorbing it) to look down on the self-destructive culture of the underclass. This is why there are a lot of programs that target poor kids who have shown drive to beat the system, so to speak. This is philanthrophy.

In other words, I don't think anyone has a problem with helping people who ask for it, but a lot of people agree that providing handouts to the poor may not be the most compassionate thing to do, even if they are starving and need food.
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post #7 of 27
The richest man in the world (Bill Gates III) is also one of the most generous. http://www.gatesfoundation.org/ He does a lot of very good work with his money.

I'm not so sure what number 145 is doing (Steve Jobs). I'm sure he does a lot of charity work but none of it is visible. Or maybe he doesn't.

Two examples of how the rich use their money. Bill is big and obvious, Steve is quiet and ...who knows.
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post #8 of 27
SJ donates, but not at the level BG does. Gates earns credit in my book because of this.
post #9 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Anders
I think people misunderstand what the wealth really is.

Its not like its money in the bank. Its investments and often one sided investments in your own marked. Think about Bill Gates. Most of his fortune is probably on MS stocks. If they pulled it out in great figures the marked would go south and it would be difficult to find new money for investments.

So its not really liquid funds the rich folks have. Its power, but limited by marked constrains and marked logic. If they invested in stuff that had no future they would not have created anything and selling a large percentage of your stocks in a company over short time isn´t doable.

But that doesn´t mean they haven´t got any wiggle room. They could use their stocks to ensure that the "energy company" they invested in stopped searching for oil and instead looked for other types of energy sources to take one example. Its not "money in your pocket"-money. its "marked money" and it has to be used within the logic of the marked to make a difference.

That's it and well said.
Nobody has billions in cash
post #10 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Outsider
SJ donates, but not at the level BG does. Gates earns credit in my book because of this.

I think if Billy Boy didn't, and quite openly as richest dude on earth from our money, he would be criticised heavily. SJ is down the list so he can get awy with not being so open about it.

True, much of the wealth is not cash in hand, but there is plenty of cash out there. It is a problem of redistribution. Also, they can borrow against their hidden wealth and get cash.

The folks caught at the moment in Africa are not just poor, but in a drought which is none of their doing. Some may argue the drought is caused by global warming which is being caused by the rich nations. Some would disagree.

Several years ago I read a book called the State of the Earth Atlas wherein they stated the UN called for 9 billion dollars to feed the world and contrasted this to 17 billion dollars spent in the US and Canada on pet-food and 13 billion dollars spent in Europe on ice cream. The rich, in this case, is all of us.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #11 of 27
"It is a problem of redistribution."

There we go. Lets have government "redistribute" the wealth. Ah, that system has not worked too well.
post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Marvin
I don't care how much they donate because I know that often times charitable contributions are made in the hope of getting huge tax breaks.

What would you do, pay the taxman or get some free PR by giving to charity?

Why should care what motivates them, as long as they donate?
post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Mac on a Mac
"It is a problem of redistribution."

There we go. Lets have government "redistribute" the wealth. Ah, that system has not worked too well.

That's what governments do, all of them, distribute and redistribute wealth...
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post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Marvin
I feel exactly the same way. When I see rich people like toupee twat Donald Trump I'm disgusted by how they parade around as though they want credit for hoarding so much money all to themselves. I don't care how much they donate because I know that often times charitable contributions are made in the hope of getting huge tax breaks.

What would you do, pay the taxman or get some free PR by giving to charity?

I figure that most people could live comfortably throughout their entire life on about £10 million without having to work so for anyone to have more than that is just greed IMO.

What I absolutely hate most is when celebrities go on TV and tell us poor people to give them money for charity.

So what? let them have their tax write off and their dance in the sun. Most of what we do here at my Colllege is with money from rich old Texans. Regardless of motive, they do good work.
post #15 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by sandau
The richest man in the world (Bill Gates III) is also one of the most generous. http://www.gatesfoundation.org/ He does a lot of very good work with his money.

I'm not so sure what number 145 is doing (Steve Jobs). I'm sure he does a lot of charity work but none of it is visible. Or maybe he doesn't.

Two examples of how the rich use their money. Bill is big and obvious, Steve is quiet and ...who knows.

Gates is very clearly following the model of Carnegie with his wealth. Schools. The arts. Doesn't he fund an opera? It seems like I heard him say at one point that he doesn't intend to leave his children some massive pile of cash. Well-off, sure. But not so much that they can act like Paris Hilton.
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post #16 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by midwinter
Gates is very clearly following the model of Carnegie with his wealth. Schools. The arts. Doesn't he fund an opera? It seems like I heard him say at one point that he doesn't intend to leave his children some massive pile of cash. Well-off, sure. But not so much that they can act like Paris Hilton.

Gaaah!

I just flashed on the children of Bill Gates behaving like Paris Hilton, and swallowed my tongue.
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post #17 of 27
How to Become As Rich As Bill Gates (a simple 8 step plan):

http://philip.greenspun.com/bg/
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post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Powerdoc
Nobody has billions in cash

Maybe not but there are people who are not tied up in business who own property (I mean general property, not just houses here) to the value of billions. Cash or not, it's tradable goods that they have beyond their needs.

Quote:
Originally posted by Mac on a Mac
So what? let them have their tax write off and their dance in the sun. Most of what we do here at my Colllege is with money from rich old Texans. Regardless of motive, they do good work.

Aaaagh, that's exactly the mentality I'm talking about. How is it good work if they are just doing it to get a tax break? That's as selfish a motive as any irrespective of who benefits in the end. If they give money to charity over and above the amount of tax they are due then that's only where the charity begins.
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Marvin
Aaaagh, that's exactly the mentality I'm talking about. How is it good work if they are just doing it to get a tax break? That's as selfish a motive as any irrespective of who benefits in the end. If they give money to charity over and above the amount of tax they are due then that's only where the charity begins.

This comes close to a question I raised in a previous thread which was about how "generosity" is measured...by the amount? By the %? By the motivation?

In the end, the motivation (someone's heart) cannot be truly measured by us. Only by God. Personally I think it is good for someone to give to worthwhile causes even if the motivation is selfish. The selfishness is their problem...not mine/ours. Still, ideally, I'd love to see people truly give out the goodness of their hearts.

P.S. It should be recognized that just because some does get a tax benefit, doesn't mean they are not motivated (primarily) by other reasons. I give because I believe I should/can/etc. I still get a tax benefit that it would be foolish of me to ignore/refuse.
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Marvin
Aaaagh, that's exactly the mentality I'm talking about. How is it good work if they are just doing it to get a tax break? That's as selfish a motive as any irrespective of who benefits in the end. If they give money to charity over and above the amount of tax they are due then that's only where the charity begins.

If you give $100 million to charity, your tax drops $40 million - you still end up with less money than you would have had you not given to charity.
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post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Marvin
Maybe not but there are people who are not tied up in business who own property (I mean general property, not just houses here) to the value of billions. Cash or not, it's tradable goods that they have beyond their needs.



Aaaagh, that's exactly the mentality I'm talking about. How is it good work if they are just doing it to get a tax break? That's as selfish a motive as any irrespective of who benefits in the end. If they give money to charity over and above the amount of tax they are due then that's only where the charity begins.



Sorry, your clueless of how things get done. People don't have to give until they themselves are poor to do a lot of good for others.
post #22 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Mac on a Mac
Sorry, your clueless of how things get done. People don't have to give until they themselves are poor to do a lot of good for others.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #23 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by New
That's what governments do, all of them, distribute and redistribute wealth...

Yes. Unfortunately.
post #24 of 27
That is why Bono, Bill Gates, and his wife are the people of the year. They spend around 5% of their wealth while having the media following them and are considered saints.

Hey Bono, I'm sure that starving african children really love hearing you sing your greatest hits while a hoard of camera men get every moment of it.
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by JohnnySmith
That is why Bono, Bill Gates, and his wife are the people of the year. They spend around 5% of their wealth

How do you know what % of their $ is given away?
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by JohnnySmith
That is why Bono, Bill Gates, and his wife are the people of the year. They spend around 5% of their wealth while having the media following them and are considered saints.

Hey Bono, I'm sure that starving african children really love hearing you sing your greatest hits while a hoard of camera men get every moment of it.

Bill Gates spent $30 billion, and has $50 billion left. Not only is 37.5% a lot more than 5%, but he has committed to give most of the rest to his foundation as well.

Also, I doubt that he cares about the publicity. If getting rich is like sex, the fame that goes with it is the associated venerial disease.
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post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally posted by Mac on a Mac
"It is a problem of redistribution."

There we go. Lets have government "redistribute" the wealth. Ah, that system has not worked too well.

It's working pretty well here in my little country...
Everybody has health insurance and a basic income.
Of course it's not absolute redistribution as (at least theoretically) in communist societies. I guess in the Netherlands (and a lot of other European countries) it's about halfway the old communist ideal and the system in the US.
Here, the richer you are, the higher the percentage of your income you have to pay in taxes. That way those who can, take care of those who can't or at least provide a basic standard of living for them.
I'm very happy I have the luxury of living in this system that IMHO has the best of both worlds!
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