The Ultra Wealthy Are Winning. . . For Now

Based on yesterday’s middling statistics, including how few times the LA Times link was opened, I did a poor job framing Mckenzie’s story. I described it as a long and difficult read hoping you’d rise to the occasion. If I were to suggest all of us go run a hilly and hot marathon, I probably shouldn’t be surprised if none of you show.

I should’ve lead with the importance of regularly mixing in challenging content with all of the light, entertaining stuff that tends to dominate the interwebs.

I can’t shake Mckenzie’s story, especially after reading Evan Osnos’s mind blowing New Yorker piece, “The Haves and The Have-Yachts”. Osnos tells the story of the ultra-rich buying ever larger, more expensive yachts.

If you’re even a little bit like me, and you don’t like the ultra-rich, Osnos’s piece will turn your dislike into a much, much deeper antipathy. If you have high blood pressure, be sure to take your pills first.

I can’t help but read the stories without wondering why in hell the world isn’t overcome by poor people’s revolutions. Osnos makes a few references to the “EatTheRich” movement, but the Wikipedia entry for it describes it as a political slogan associated with class conflict and anti-capitalism.

Sometimes in my hometown of Olympia, WA I see an “Eat the Rich” bumpersticker or graffiti tag. If I was a “Have-Yachter” I’d be thrilled that the primary pushback to the growing wealth gap is some flaccid combo of political slogans and bumperstickers.

This puts me in a tough position in that I don’t condone mindless property damage or really violence of any kind, and yet, I can’t help but wonder if much more radical responses to the growing wealth gap are warranted.

Another dilemma is how do we define “ultra-wealthy”? The tipping point seems to be $30 million, but compared to Mckenzie, I definitely qualify as ultra wealthy.

The legions of ultra wealthy people reading this post are saying to themselves, “We’ll be fine, we’ll just invest even more in security.” Right now they’re right, but whether I live to see it or not, someday poor people’s rage will ignite like the fires in France, Greece, Portugal, and Spain.

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