WEALTH CONCENTRATED IN FEWER HANDS

The goal of past generations is to have the next generation be better off than they were.
Many of us can remember a time when, if we worked hard, we advanced. If we had a job and behaved on the job, we could work as long as we wanted, retire when we got older and have a few good years of leisure as a reward for our hard work.
By most accounts, this was called the American Dream.
The recession of 2008 may have changed everything. We now have a world in which the middle class is shrinking because hard-working people are losing their jobs, and having great difficulty finding another that pays as well – if they find one at all.
Lifestyles are being cut back. Pessimistic views of the future abound. Perfectly good, hard-working people are getting discouraged. Spirits are being broken.
Thomas Picketty, a French economist, draws a picture of consolidation of wealth in fewer hands in his book, “Capital in the Twenty-First Century.” New York Times columnist and economist Paul Krugman calls the book a phenomenon. Krugman wrote about the book in an April 24,2014, column.
Picketty sees a world in which more wealth will be concentrated in a decreasing number of hands. He sees that as a dangerous trend.
No one wants anyone to get paid for laziness. Most people want to work, and want to be paid fairly for what they do. Krugman points out that more conservative economic policies of government are leading to wealth being spread more lavishly on fewer people, at the expense of a majority of others.
Without getting into a debate about the values, or evils, of socialism or capitalism, let’s look at what we have in front of us.
Many of us have gone through a downsizing at work. Companies are learning to operate with fewer people, thanks to technology advancements and other things.
When this happened in previous decades, those who got laid off were reasonably confident they would find work before too much time passed. Today, that’s not necessarily the case. There are millions of people who have been out of work for extended periods, and employers are not hiring them because they have been out of work for so long.
Hence, the capitalistic wealth distribution formula – work=money – is turned on its head. The socialist voice is getting louder. In other words: more heavily tax those few who have benefitted from this, to cover those that they injured in the process.
But there may be a better way than wealth redistribution through government. Make more widely known the available vehicles for a person to change his life. There are many opportunities out there for people to live their dreams, despite having been hurt by the current economic trends.
For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. At the same time, some people have to change. It was comfortable having a job, going to work, work as many years as a person wanted and retire not only with the means to meet needs, but perhaps to also enjoy leisure.
You can be angry at wealth concentration in a few hands, or you can find a way to gain more wealth for yourself, and help others do the same.
That’s the ultimate in people helping people. If more people did that, proper wealth distribution would naturally occur, without government interference.
It’s always better to earn your own wealth than to take someone else’s. Look for a vehicle that allows you to do that, without impoverishing others in the process. Look for that vehicle you and your friends could ride together — and work together to enrich each other.
Think of the good you can do in the process. Best of all, think of the fun you’ll have doing it.
Peter

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