Are You Rich?
If you can read these words, then you are most likely in the top 1% of the world’s richest people. If you own a laptop, with access to the internet, you are rich. If you make more than $25,000 a year, own a car, and three pair of shoes, you are wealthy. If you have access to clean running water, an iphone, a job that pays more than $2 a day, then you are already living better than 99% of the entire world’s population.
But I keep hearing that we are so poor. I keep hearing that we are the bottom 99%, and that the richest Americans in the 1% are just greedy. They need to spread the wealth around. Give us some money too! Help all those poor people!
But how many of us are scrambling to give our money away? When was the last time you donated to a world charity, to help people living without drinking water, or shoes? When was the last time you decided not to get that slick new gadget so you could send money to help feed the poor? We think of rich people as being so greedy, but we are all greedy. We are all interested in our own desires and wants. We all like to have more and more ‘things’.
But isn’t it great to have things for ourselves? As poor as I am, I have a dishwasher, a queen sized bed, a shower with hot running water, and a projector. I watch movies with my laptop, and a cool sound system with nice bass. I ride to work on an $800 bicycle, and make around $43,000 a year. I am the 1%.
But I feel so poor. I am just barely struggling to get by. My fridge is empty, and I’m struggling to pay off my credit card bills as soon as possible. I don’t own a car, or many clothes. Compared to the average American, I am poor.
Let’s not forget that we have lots to be thankful for. Sure, we may not be as rich as the billionaires we hear about constantly. But they are the 1% of the 1%. And many of them do give their money away, through charity, or investment. Bill Gates gives billions away every year, as do many one percenters. We should learn from their philanthropy, because we Americans ARE rich. And the reason we are rich is because we live in the freest society in the entire world. The most capitalistic, and libertarian country on the planet. Sure it’s not perfect, but it is still pretty darn good.