I saw a tweet that read “knowing that world’s top 10 richest could wipe out poverty and not even notice the money’s gone sickens me.”
A very interesting idea, but is it true, and if not, how far off the mark is it? Business Insider recently wrote an article looking at the Forbes top 10 Billionaires –
Add them up and we have $451.5B. Nothing to sneeze at, but how much good would this money do? The site Global Rich List tells us that half the world’s people live on less than $850 per year. If we confiscate the entire wealth of these top ten, we can give each of the 3 billion people at the bottom $150 each. That won’t quite eliminate poverty, not by a longshot.
To be fair to the gal that tweeted this, the distribution of wealth in the US is highly concentrated. Data shows the top 1% own approximately 40% of all wealth in this country. That’s about $24 trillion. Divide this over 3 billion people and we have $8,000 per person. Now, that might be enough to change the lives of the world’s very poor, although it’s not likely to happen anytime soon.
I’m sorry to say this is a problem for which I have no answers, not today.