I don’t know any super rich people. I have many co-workers who appear to be pretty well-off, but in my estimation it doesn’t seem like there are millionaires around me. But they are much more financially successful, in general, then a lot of the people I know from childhood.
It’s always a weird experience for me when I visit home and then come back to work. A lot of people I know back home are struggling. They can’t find a good enough job to buy a decent place to live, or they are working several jobs. When I’m back to work, my colleagues constantly discuss investments. I fall somewhere in between. I’m not as good at creating wealth as my co-workers, but I was lucky enough to make it to a job that pays well in comparison to most.
I learned a lot of things about money through trial and error once I got to adult life. I used to spend way too much. When I was a kid, I always felt poor. So as soon as I started coming into nice paychecks, I tried to make up for it. I also gave a lot of loans along the way that I never really expected to be paid back. I’ve tried to help my people, when I could. So yea, I could probably be much better positioned, had I made the right moves.
But I’m really noticing how different these two groups, my financially stable colleagues and home community, have become in terms of quality of life. Sometimes it seems like two different worlds. At work, we complain when the food is bad. But I’ve seen friends/family wait until their paycheck to buy groceries. It’s much worse when you get to the topic of healthcare, which we see across the country. Millions of people go bankrupt due to medical bills. Hell, that may happen to me or some colleagues one day, despite having what is considered great coverage.
I don’t know how much correlation financial security has to actual happiness, but I think we can agree it helps your mood to have a lot of money. That is why we have capitalism and the innovation associated with it. But can we also agree that it HURTS mankind to develop increasingly staggering differences between the haves and have-nots? Could we take it a small step forward, and agree it’s bad for some people to be rich enough to corrupt government officials and get tax cuts that most people don’t support?
We need to fight the greed. I don’t think that my work friends are dodging taxes or pushing for tax cuts in the way we see the ultra-wealthy establishment. I assume they understand that a stable economy depends on the lower-income groups being able to survive. I suppose the counter-argument is that, if we let the rich be richer, they’ll create jobs for everyone. But what about when those jobs suck, are temporary, and eventually automated? If it takes two temp jobs to make a living, the solution is to hope the rich will create TWO jobs for the rest of us?