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Author: Foolferlove Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 35392  
Subject: Re: Household net worth at record high Date: 3/12/2004 4:25 PM
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Your class envy is sad. Instead of worrying so much about what other people earn, how about working harder to earn more yourself?

Class envy? That's funny. I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth, which is going to soon become platinum. My "richest of the rich" father provided me with a lifetime of very expensive private education, and he is even richer now. What is he doing with his wealth? Building income producing properties in Europe while also taking money from his american business and sending it to Europe to build his retirment home.

The american business he runs basically pays everybody minimun wage, with no health benefits or retirement plan. Anyway, he is able to make a ton of money from it, and that money is getting sent to Europe.

When my dad dies I will have a trust fund that will ensure I will NEVER want for anything, no matter how bad I screw up in life. It will enable me to take business risks that others without such a safety net won't be able to take. I will only get richer and richer, but there are many ways to do that without creating jobs. Currently I am investing heavily in foreign companies. I don't see a good outcome for the US economy and look to have 70% international investements. My foreign investments will make me money, but they won't make US jobs.

Actually, it's quite good for the economy. A capitalist system is not a zero-sum game. Just because your neighbor makes a lot of money does not mean that you earn less. The 'richest of the rich' get richer by creating jobs and growing the economy. That helps everyone.

It would be great if any jobs were being created. My dad's income went up 10s of thousands of dollars due to the divident tax cut. He was overjoyed. He used that money to spend a week in Aruba and a week in Greece. He got richer all right, but no jobs were created.

So first off it IS possible for people to get rich and not create jobs. And it IS possible for some people income to go up at the expense of others. It a complicated web of economic forces and policies that will determine whether a capitalist system continues to strenghten an economy or weaken it.

But back to your original point. You cite a report that states that overall net worth in this country increased. If we assume that the top 1% of people had a net worth increase of 100%, while everyone else had a net worth decrease, is this a good thing, or a bad thing? Wouldn't the BEST thing be for EVERYONES net worth to go up? I agree, that it's not a zero-sum game. Which is why it's ALARMING if large segments of the population have a declining net worth. Especially if its consumers. Because consumers drive the economy. If they are in trouble, the economy is in trouble. And lots of signs point to the consumer being in trouble.

That's why a report that states the total net worth increasing doesn't tell us much of anything unless it tells us what is happening to those who SPEND the money.

But maybe I am being blinded by my class envy.
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