November 28, 2020

"A socialist since college, Mr. Jacobs sees his family’s 'extreme, plutocratic wealth' as both a moral and economic failure."

"He wants to put his inheritance toward ending capitalism, and by that he means using his money to undo systems that accumulate money for those at the top, and that have played a large role in widening economic and racial inequality.... Any leftist trying to shake off an inheritance will, at some point, find their way to Resource Generation; all of the heirs in this article did. The organization, founded in 1998, is a politicization machine for wealthy 18- to 35-year-olds. The nonprofit offers programming that encourages members to see capitalism not as a market-based equalizer promising upward mobility, but as a damaging system predicated on, as Resource Generation puts it, 'stolen land, stolen labor and stolen lives.' In go young people knotted by tension between their progressive values and their wealth; out come determined campaigners with a plan to redistribute...."

133 comments:

Rusty said...

Capitalism is organic. You can't tear it down without destroying the fabric of society. Why do you progressive/socialist knuckleheads think you can do it better?

Jersey Fled said...

So Mr. Jacobs wants to tear down the system that lets people accumulate enough wealth to do something more beneficial with it than Mr. Jacobs is doing with his.

YoungHegelian said...

And these kids are really so deluded that, should they succeed in taking down capitalism, they think that the new regime will reward them for their conscience. Hell, they'll be lucky if the regime they work toward lets them live.

They're on the wrong side of the class & race consciousness divide. They are, by their very essence, the enemy. They're just a very useful kind of useful idiot.

Joe Smith said...

Funny how none of them want to give it to conservative causes, just liberal Marxist bullshit.

The youth of today are idiots.

And I notice they don't want to give it ALL away.

Sounds like there will be plenty left over to live the bougie lives of little socialist cogs in a loft in the Village.

Frauds.

tcrosse said...

Giving it all away does not make you Buddha.

Ralph L said...

If they give their bodies to be burned, all that will be left is an invisible hand.

Attonasi said...

Privileged elites always want to assert their status by indulging in pleasures denied to the lower classes. This often leads them into immoral, deranged, and even criminal behavior. They're desperate to flaunt their power by doing what lesser folk are forbidden to do.

Does anyone expect this kid to know a day of hunger?

Shouting Thomas said...

This is so damned stupid. Capitalism has succeeded on a glorious scale in the last 50 years. Poverty rates are declining all over the world.

One of my favorite stories derived from my trips to the Philippines. Everybody thinks of the island as mired in extreme poverty, but the reality is a rapidly expanding and huge middle class.

My extended family is full of Filipino emigres working their asses off and sending money back home. There’s an element of humor here, because I discovered in my travels that their kids back home are middle class, getting fat and have all the electronic gimcracks an American kid has. The kids are taking the money their relatives are sending home and partying hearty, delaying adulthood and marriage into their 30s, just like American kids.

Leave everything alone to progress as it has been progressing for the past 50 years and just about everybody will be fat and rich. There’s just no need for this socialism bullshit.

Attonasi said...

Rusty said...

Capitalism is organic. You can't tear it down without destroying the fabric of society. Why do you progressive/socialist knuckleheads think you can do it better?

They think like animals.

A free society requires concepts that do not fit individual goals of procreation. Animals naturally rebel against a free society.

Ice Nine said...

Just a variation on the pervasive mental illness of white kids who hate themselves because of their color.

Jupiter said...

One of the nice things about the private control of resources, as opposed to public control, is that when a private owner of valuable resources starts using them in unproductive ways, he begins to go broke, and the resources begin to transfer into more capable hands. Governments can go on wasting resources as long as any of their citizens have resources left that they can plunder.

Howard said...

It's just another example of the invisible hand providing checks and balances. Good for them. I hope their efforts makes our market based system better.

Shouting Thomas said...

To add to this glorious stupidity:

Communist China has moved rapidly to a market based economy and is eradicating poverty at an incredible rate.

They may still insist on a one party state, but they have embraced crony capitalism and it’s working.

Jupiter said...

"They're on the wrong side of the class & race consciousness divide. They are, by their very essence, the enemy. They're just a very useful kind of useful idiot."

Oh, I'm not so sure about that. The declared concerns of the Left are pretexts. They do not actually care about Blacks, or Transsexuals, or Women, or Whales. They care about Power. Once they get it, the old meritocracy of productivity re-emerges, as in the USSR. It wasn't proletarians who put Sputnik into orbit, it was the grandsons of the Kulaks.

DavidUW said...

They never give away enough to be you know actually poor.

Unknown said...

Go to university and become Patty Hearst.

Unknown said...

Go to university and become Patty Hearst.

BidenFamilyTaxPayerFundedCrackPipe said...

No one is stopping these brats from giving all their money away.

Crony capitalism is the problem.

Capitalism in and of itself is merely a system of commerce.

BidenFamilyTaxPayerFundedCrackPipe said...

Kill the goose... kill the goose!

ok - the goose is dead. now what? Distribute the poverty! distribute the poverty!

RNB said...

"...a damaging system predicated on... 'stolen land, stolen labor and stolen lives.'" Sounds like socialism to me.

RBE said...

Wish all these stupid people would gather together and jump off a cliff like lemmings.

Attonasi said...

Does this have anything to do with the multiple statues attacked last night?

chuck said...

“You don’t understand the class structure of American society or you would not ask such a question. In the United States, the working class are Democrats. The middle class are Republicans. The upper class are communists.”

Howard said...

I don't understand why you people are so insecure about our political and economic system that has been a world-beating juggernaut in the industrial revolution and now in the information age on the brink of the automation age.

On the whole I believe these people share a lot of your views about the rapacious nature of globalist elite billionaire rigged capitalism that Trump ran against in 2016.

reader said...

I can’t get to the article. What is the first name of Mr. Jacobs? Is it Paul, Jeff, or Hal by any chance?

Bob Boyd said...

I'm certainly willing to do my part to help these kids unburden themselves.
How do I get the list?

I Callahan said...

I hope their efforts makes our market based system better.

How can completely tearing down a system make that system better? Did you even read what these stupid, spoiled brats are advocating for?

steve said...

It's always easy to hate money when you have a lot of it. That's why they protest so much. They have the time and don't have to worry about making a living. How much you want to bet that ten years from now, all of them are still wealthy?

Shouting Thomas said...

@Howard,

We’re headed toward a future of incredible, overwhelming wealth for everybody, particularly as we learn how to successfully mine in space.

The style in which I live, which is just ordinary middle class, would have looked like dazzling wealth to my grandparents. They would have regarded the work I did for 50 years as child’s play. At age 70, my hands are as soft as a baby’s butt.

The die is already cast. This is the future for everybody. In a way, I can’t see what you gain by being a billionaire. Everybody I know has way too much stuff and is eating themselves into diabetes and obesity.

This is the successful legacy of capitalism. The social welfare system will continue to expand because we can afford it, and we just don’t need many people to man the systems of production.

BidenFamilyTaxPayerFundedCrackPipe said...

Much of the world lives in poverty - with corrupt despots as leaders.
Why do so many want to flee and come to America?

Freedom to make your own life and support yourself with the fruits of your own labor.

The left want to tear that down.

Paul Snively said...

It's always nice when the guilt-ridden rich who literally want a system in which everyone is poor in order to assuage their guilt reveal both their economic ignorance and their malignant narcissism.

stevew said...

Not to worry, they will fail to achieve their goal. Your accumulated wealth is safe.

Jupiter said...

"I don't understand why you people are so insecure about our political and economic system that has been a world-beating juggernaut in the industrial revolution and now in the information age on the brink of the automation age."

Do you regard yourself as a unique being, Howard? Are you from Outer Space? Should we take you to Our Leader? Or is it only in this forum that you address others as "you people"? I can't speak for the entire human race, but my own sense of insecurity stems from an awareness of the fragility of the rule of law. Capitalism without rule of law is what the Chinese have. They also have slave labor and organ transplants on demand. I like my organs where they are.

Xmas said...

I'd love to tear down capitalism. A few questions though, how do you convince farmers to farm? In fact, how do you get anything done that requires high skills and arduous labor? And why would anyone build any complex machinery or equipment? Or even repair it?

No one is going to build or operate septic tank draining trucks for the joy of their labor or the goodwill of their fellow man.

Bob Boyd said...

A good con man knows, inside every rich person is a poor person screaming to get out.

Dave64 said...

Hard times create strong men. Strong men create good times. Good times create weak men. And, weak men create hard times.”

SGT Ted said...

Trust fund socialists are some of the most ignorant people alive. The very wealth they grew up in and despise has shielded them from the knowledge and experience of what it takes to build wealth.

It is also an indictment of higher educations breeding camps for Marxist indoctrination. Only the wealth of the western world could afford to fund such ignorance.

n.n said...

Would he deny people their beachfront estates? The choices are public and private economy, and public and/or private smoothing functions. That said, NYT wants to abort the baby and have her, too. Lose your Pro-Choice, selective, opportunistic, relativistic quasi-religion.

Individual dignity. Intrinsic value. Inordinate worth. Reconcile.

Sebastian said...

"see capitalism not as a market-based equalizer promising upward mobility"

Does anyone see capitalism that way?

I mean it would be absurd: for every upwardly mobile person, there has to be a downwardly mobile one. There's only so much room in each quintile.

Plus capitalism is inherently unequal, and has to be. (Just like all other systems invented by humans, by the way.)

Of course, if we are talking about capitalism as lifting everyone, that's actually true. Leave it to rich pseudo-socialists to try and make everyone poorer.

Wince said...

What concerns me is not them squandering their legacies.

But using their inheritance to kick-out the bottom rungs of the economic ladder for the rest of society.

The bottom rungs above which most of them will, of course, continue to perch.

Jupiter said...

It is noteworthy that the various species of social insects appear to have evolved their socialism independently. There seem to be evolutionary advantages to a system in which the reproductive function is sequestered, and a disposable class of individuals can be created whose desires favor, not their own reproductive success, but the success of The Hive. It took hundreds of millions of years for these intricate mechanisms to evolve among insects, if indeed that is how they arose, but perhaps the Chinese can do it quicker.

Shouting Thomas said...

I’m surprised that nobody has responded to my posts, which state rather simply that things are generally proceeding in an incredibly positive direction, that they are only going to get better, that everybody is going to be wealthy in the future, etc.

The problem these folks are hoping to fix with socialism is mostly non-existent.

I’m pretty confident of this.

gilbar said...

how's that saying go?
from peasant back to peasant in 3 generations?

sounds like that's TOO LONG for today's 2nd generation

mockturtle said...

Hey, I don't care if they want to get rid of their money, so long as they keep their hands off mine.

Jupiter said...

Sebastian said...
"I mean it would be absurd: for every upwardly mobile person, there has to be a downwardly mobile one. There's only so much room in each quintile."

Sebastian, you have made my day. You have made my week, and perhaps I will read your comment again on Tuesday to solace me through the bleak December. I had despaired of encountering another human being capable of grasping this elementary numerical fact. You may form an accurate opinion of the intellectual ability present in modern academia by considering that they all nod solemnly when one of their number gabbles about the need to increase economic mobility.

Two-eyed Jack said...

Engels.

JaimeRoberto said...

So just like Bill Ayres then.

David Begley said...

I want to meet the grifters who run this organization.

dbzdak said...

I wonder why none of these heirs give all their money to the government. Perhaps they think it would be spent badly? And, that they themselves are in a better position to decide how the money is spend than the government?

Hmmm...(looking up "socialism" in the dictionary).

Caligula said...

It would seem a feature of capitalism that it seldom produces a true wealth-based aristocracy, as many of the offspring of those who acquired the fortune to begin with can be expected to dissipate it within a generation or two.

Pert of what operates here is that too few of these rich kids face any real challenges in adolescence and early adulthood (other than dealing with having been born rich) and thus they fail to develop the skills that enable most of us acquire to manage risk, adversity and difficult tasks and just plain bad luck.

Darrell said...

He should visit a Soylent Green suicide booth. Some zoo animals can be fed.

The Drill SGT said...

With that on their mind, Mx. Delahunt gives away $10,000 a month, divided between 50 small organizations, most of which have an anticapitalist mission and in some way tackle the externalities of discount shopping.

I'm going to assume that Delahunt has at least $10M, to make the club.

Now and decent index fund ought to yield 5%, so its income might be $500,000 a year and of that its divesting $120k?

Hell Romney did more than that

I bet its monthly credit card bill is double its divesting.

David Begley said...

I clicked through for once and read the story. These young people are fucking idiots who were poorly educated by the Left at our shitty colleges.

Michael K said...

Blogger SGT Ted said...
Trust fund socialists are some of the most ignorant people alive. The very wealth they grew up in and despise has shielded them from the knowledge and experience of what it takes to build wealth.


Absolutely. I also agree with Howard, though. The system that makes us rich is the free market. That's why I am not sure that China is going to win their cold war with us. Their only hope is that Democrats destroy that free market.

The Drill SGT said...

reader said...
I can’t get to the article. What is the first name of Mr. Jacobs? Is it Paul, Jeff, or Hal by any chance?


"Lately, Sam Jacobs has been having a lot of conversations with his family’s lawyers. He’s trying to gain access to more of his $30 million trust fund. At 25,"

Shouting Thomas said...

No takers, huh?

My family of 6 has 5 vehicles, a big house, all the food we could possibly eat (in fact too much), half a dozen TVs, and at least 10 computers.

We have every electronic gimcrack you can buy. Everybody has at least one cell phone.

This is the norm in my area, and I live in a blue collar, not so thriving town in upstate NY.

It’s also the norm in my teeny tiny hometown in rural Illinois.

I repeat. We’re all incredibly wealthy. Our primary problem is that we’re killing ourselves with overeating. Why be jealous of people with more money when you don’t need another damned thing?

This entire argument, on both sides, is utter bullshit.

Bob Boyd said...

Reducing your net worth won't increase your self worth.
You have to get behind the mule and plow.

n.n said...

Private smoothing functions... that's how redistributive change is processed while mitigating progressive corruption. It's a choice. Not that Choice.

Fernandinande said...

Does anyone expect this kid to know a day of hunger?

That "kid" is bald, over 50 years old and says:

"I'm a conservative because there is so much about the American tradition that is worth conserving. I worry that people aren't as frightened of authoritarians and totalitarians as they should be.

Freedom and capitalism are inseparable, because without capitalism, freedom just means shouting your opinion and hoping somebody important is listening."

h said...

Wealth of (say) $20 million can generate income of $40,000 a month more or less indefinitely. So a person who inherits $100 million can donate 80% to any kind of charitable cause and still live a life of amazing luxury that you or I cannot begin to imagine.

reader said...

Thank you The Drill SGT. Sam is Paul’s son.

h said...

I just wonder why none of them give money to the US Treasury. I think one or two leaders (Obama? Trump?) could make this a popular trend.

Howard said...

Preach it brother Thomas. I hope you are staying lean and mean. That's real wealth. Just built myself dip bars from threaded black iron... Exactly the shoulder Rx I needed.

I believe in the philosophy of Steven Pinker. Things have never been better. Just wait. After Covid, it will be the roaring twenties on steroids. You'll be banging 40-yo cougars until your John Henry falls off.

Bruce Hayden said...

“We have every electronic gimcrack you can buy. Everybody has at least one cell phone.”

I was at both Sam’s Club (twice) and Costco yesterday (Black Friday). I was amazed at the people carting out 75” TVs. Most of them looked working class, except maybe a bit too overweight to actually work with their hands for a living. At one of the stores, there was a line for the flatbed carts, because of all the big screen TVs being bought.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

If these people choose to live in mud huts, I've got no problem with it. But someone needs to explain to them (preferably via application of a hickory stick) that they have the privilege of making that choice. Many people do not and this bunch of snotty little trust fund dog turds doesn't have the right to take their only hope of having a say in the matter away from them.

Kevin said...

"Socialist-minded millennial heirs are trying to live their values by getting rid of their money"

What's stopping them?

Certainly not "capitalism".

JAORE said...

"I mean it would be absurd: for every upwardly mobile person, there has to be a downwardly mobile one. There's only so much room in each quintile."

True enough as far as you go.

But today's lowest quintile lives a life not even dreamed of by yesteryear;s top quintile.

Ahhhhh, capitalism!

DEEBEE said...

What kind of a vacuous mind require assistance in getting rid of ones wealth? Presumably the same kind that would have no freaking idea of how to generate one accumulate it and decides that all the poor schlubs scrambling to earn and accumulate it need to be stopped before they hurt themselves.Why not just grow poor in anonymity?

Bruce Hayden said...

“Privileged elites always want to assert their status by indulging in pleasures denied to the lower classes. This often leads them into immoral, deranged, and even criminal behavior. They're desperate to flaunt their power by doing what lesser folk are forbidden to do.”

If you haven’t read that article, please do. There have been a number of very degenerate people at the top in our country for some time. Jeffrey Epstein, Harvey Weinstein, and Hunter Biden are just the tip of the iceberg. I should add in the entire passenger list of those who flew on Epstein’s Lolita Express to his Pedophile Island, as well as very possibly the Podesta brothers. But it isn’t just here, of course - Saudi Princes routinely flew to London, esp, for decades, to live lives of debauchery that would have resulted in execution back home.

The ever more egregious violations of social norms, with seeming impunity, is one of the perks of being very rich and very powerful. Of course, Crooked Hillary wasn’t going to prison for her thousands of violations of the Official Records Act, hundreds of violations of the Espionage Act, or her thousands of violations of Campaign Finance laws. That just doesn’t happen to people like her. We are almost daily seeing governors mandating lockdowns and masks for their peons, then flaunting their hypocrisy. Etc. The game seems to be how egregious can they violate social norms and state and federal laws, without paying the price. Pedophilia now seems to be becoming mainstream for the really powerful. Is anyone surprised then when we hear rumors of them drinking or transfusing the blood of young kids, in order to achieve perpetual youth?

DanTheMan said...

Free to chose:
1) Marxism, which has led to poverty and over 50+ million deaths in the last 100 years
or
2) Capitalism, which has lifted more people out of poverty than any other human invention

For a lefty, this is an easy choice. It's (1), every time.


Tyrone Slothrop said...

Anti-capitalists always focus on differences in wealth without any regard for absolute wealth. I personally don't care if some plutocrat has a million times my net worth as long as I can easily afford all of the necessities and quite a few of the luxuries of life. Capitalism made everybody rich in an absolute sense. All--ever single one-- of the advances in medicine and technology we enjoy today (and pay relatively very little for)are the fruit of the incentives capitalism creates. The socialists are correct in the notion that their system would make personal wealth more equal. Unfortunately, the means by which they'd achieve that ideal is by making everyone equally poor. The extensive history of communist nations proves that unequivocally.

mikee said...

I'll do that same job, helping rich idiots redistribute their wealth to anticapitalist organizations, for half the price of the present folks doing so. And all I have to do is send their money to Saint Jude's Hospital, one of the best charities around. If you want to divest yourself of some capitalist filthy lucre, send it there. They are not capitalist, being nonprofit, and they do GREAT work with kids.

Owen said...

The organization cited in the article as helping these spoiled morons redistribute their assets, reminds me of Woody Allen in one of his farces. He is at a party and somebody asks him, “And what do you?” He replies, “I’m a financial adviser.” “Oh, how does that work?” “I help them with their money. Until it’s all gone.”

Jupiter said...

"But today's lowest quintile lives a life not even dreamed of by yesteryear;s top quintile."

Yeah, right. That's why they rob and loot and carjack and kill themselves with fentanyl, when they aren't rotting in prison.

Something ain't right, and it's good and wrong. But I am dubious of the Left's analysis. They claim to find the recipe for utopia in the systematic, but not comprehensive, rejection of biological reality. Unpersuasive, to say the least.

But to the many defenders of Capitalism who are outraged by this tale, myself among them, I must ask, "What is objectionable about a man leaving his fortune to his heirs? And how is it objectionable if those heirs choose to spend that money so as to please themselves? How is your critique any different than the objections of the Commies, to letting private citizens spend their legally acquired funds as they see fit?".

Jupiter said...

Are we perhaps quibbling about taste? A wealthy man should have a large yacht, with some blondes in bikinis, so that I can imagine his pastimes to be more gratifying than my own.

DavidUW said...

No billionaire or even trust fund baby has ever made me poorer or forced me to buy, say, an iPhone.

I don't care that Bezos is rich or that Walton's heirs are rich.

I do care about the government taking 51% of my income away under threat of imprisonment and confiscation of my assets.

Temujin said...

All the money in the world and all the right schools and universities don't guarantee that they've learned anything. In fact, just the opposite. They've been made just stupid enough to give their money to other stupid people working for causes that will destroy everything around them. And just stupid enough to think it won't touch them.

Socialism is a disease that starts in the brain.

Birkel said...

The free market system cannot be replaced because it is merely a reflection of human behavior under conditions of scarcity. Those truths cannot be undone by government intervention.

Meanwhile the creation of Karl Marx, "capitalism", does not and cannot reflect human nature. It has no better chance of working than a system that denies gravity. Or magnetism.

Why people who support the free market recognition of human nature would use the word coined by an enemy of free markets is beyond ken.

Unknown said...

Sigh. Maybe one day we'll all be able to live in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. I've heard that it's a magical place where everyone is equal and stuff.

Michael K said...

Things have never been better. Just wait. After Covid, it will be the roaring twenties on steroids. You'll be banging 40-yo cougars until your John Henry falls off.

Not with Slow Joe and his band of has beens running the fed. The rich, of course, will get richer. Why do you think they funded this fraud? You know better. The parties have switched, much as they did after WWII. The Democrats got on the welfare bandwagon with LBJ and pretended Jim Crow and Segregation never happened. That was something Republicans did but since most of their voters know no history (They don't know who fought WWII), it didn't matter. They believe what they see on CNN.

Republicans, lots of them reluctantly, saw the donor class leave for greener (sorry) pastures. The small business base was always there. They were the Tea Party and got short shrift from the donor suckers like Ryan.

It seems like only Trump was interested in them plus the Reagan Democrats.

The fact that the "clerisy" hated him as much as they hate working people was a plus. Ross Perot was a warning, as was Sarah Palin, but they ignored it. McCain ran for re-election on a platform of repeal Obama care and "Build the dam wall !"

Every word a lie.

After much suspicion, most Republicans settled for keeping promises. That was something new. 3% stuck with the donor class but don't count. Trump is not going away and might even be inaugurated on Jan 20.

Bruce Hayden said...

“Yeah, right. That's why they rob and loot and carjack and kill themselves with fentanyl, when they aren't rotting in prison.”

“Something ain't right, and it's good and wrong. But I am dubious of the Left's analysis. They claim to find the recipe for utopia in the systematic, but not comprehensive, rejection of biological reality. Unpersuasive, to say the least.”

What is their purpose in life? My kid, and their fiancé, always knew that they would contribute to society growing up. Both have graduate STEM degrees, and are contributing to society. One does combustion efficiency, the other drinking water quality. But they were lucky. I am meeting kids now, in their latter teens, who don’t have an open road ahead of them. Their schools are marginal, and don’t have an easy road into and through college. Many seem lost - I was lost at their age, but was in college at the time, so it didn’t matter. Those are lower middle class white kids. The poor black kids of single mothers in inner city neighborhoods have even less hope of a fulfilling career. Or even, ultimately, a good job.

The reason that I asked the question about purpose, is that we may very well be entering an era where everyone can live decently well, even if all they do is consume, and contribute nothing, really, to the common good. I think that we may soon be at a place where we can easily afford to give everyone a guaranteed minimum income, regardless of their contributions to society. I just question whether it would be a good thing, or not. And think, more and more, that the answer is probably not.

mockturtle said...

If you look at any country that overthrew Capitalism and nationalized its industries you will see a political elite living large and a poverty-stricken populace. BTW, whatever happened to Hugo Chavez's daughter and those billions of dollars?

mockturtle said...

The above post originally posted in wrong thread. Sorry.

Birkel said...

Free markets.

Stop letting the Left control the language. Karl Marx coined the misnomer "capitalism" and it is bull shit.

Quit being complicit.

Michael said...

Shouting Thomas has it right. We live better than Nero. In the best time and place in human history.

Janice Sue G. said...

Nothing new about this. It was described in 1970 by Tom Wolfe in.Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. The beneficiaries of this largess are scamming their naive patrons. It's been going on forever.

I'm Not Sure said...

"I think that we may soon be at a place where we can easily afford to give everyone a guaranteed minimum income, regardless of their contributions to society. I just question whether it would be a good thing, or not. And think, more and more, that the answer is probably not."

I also think the answer is "not". What do you suppose will happen when people are told "It's okay if you don't do anything to help yourself. Here's some stuff to get by." Are they going to think "Cool! Free stuff!" and be happy or are going to look at what productive people have, which will be more and start complaining about the unfairness of it all? You know the answer. Progressives will agree, and another round of appropriation begins.

Rusty said...

Sebastian said...
"I mean it would be absurd: for every upwardly mobile person, there has to be a downwardly mobile one. There's only so much room in each quintile."
Quite so. Or to put it another way. There is a finite amount of money in the world. The amount of wealth available is nearly infinite. It is only bound by our imagination and desire.y

wholelottasplainin' said...

Sebastian said...
"see capitalism not as a market-based equalizer promising upward mobility"

Does anyone see capitalism that way?

I mean it would be absurd: for every upwardly mobile person, there has to be a downwardly mobile one. There's only so much room in each quintile.
**********************

It's the old Zero Sum Game fallacy.

Sebastian, would you like to explain how virtually EVERY American lives much better than ANY American did 100 years ago, when average life expectancy was at least twenty years less, when most people engaged in hard manual labor, and where medicine had not even begun to be based on "science"?

@ Jupiter: are you serious? A quintile is nothing more than a frequency distribution. saying there's only room for a certain number of people in it makes absolutely no sense. The quintile distribution for incomes fifty years ago has nothing to do with those today, because of the many UPWARD changes in each group, including "the poor". If a person moves up into the next income quintile, he doesn't push anyone out of it.

Joe Smith said...

The poor people in this country are some of the fattest. Go figure.

A good friend, decidedly middle-class working construction jobs, sent his oldest daughter to a nice state university.

She met and became friends with a lot of wealthy girls who had trust funds set up.

She wasn't exactly sure how that worked, and one day asked her father (my friend), 'Dad, do I have a trust fund?'

He quickly replied, 'Trust me, there is no fund.'

Joe Smith said...

This entire discussion ties into the issue of what you will leave to your children?

If you are wealthy, will you leave them that wealth?

Or will you give them a little (or nothing) and leave it to various organizations?

All assuming the commies in government don't institute some kind of wealth tax.

Me and my wife have decided that our kids will get maybe half of what we have (a good chunk of change) and do our best to spend the rest before we exit stage left.

virgil xenophon said...

Yes, ST is right, Michael, but that old aphorism "from shirt-sleeves to shirt-sleeves in three generations" is also eternally at play with a vengeance also..

virgil xenophon said...

Yes, ST is right, Michael, but that old aphorism "from shirt-sleeves to shirt-sleeves in three generations" is also eternally at play with a vengeance also..

tim in vermont said...

I would be very interested to see the first piece of land occupied today that wasn’t “stolen” by somebody from somebody else, even if was stolen in the distant past. Is China built on “stolen land”? No? Then why were the ancient Chinese such masters of weaponry?

ngtrains said...

By definition, each quintile is 20% of the total.

some move up. Some move down. but the wealth or
income in the quartile almost always moves up.

It not a zero sum game. The quartiles keep growing.
and the wealth in each one gets larger. By definition,
one person earns 1$ more and moves up. the boundaries
between the groups are not meaningful. Probably about $ difference.
of course the median of each group is different, but the 'people' are
distributed across the group.

bagoh20 said...

The damaging thing about being born rich is that you never have to learn the value of money, and therefor the even greater value of learning how to make it. Rich kids are the poorest kind.

bagoh20 said...

I don't have kids to leave my money to, but if I did, I wouldn't.

wholelottasplainin' said...

I have to wrestle with the fact that my son and his wife are Bernie-bro types. Knowing that, I wonder why I should allow them to receive the fruits of OUR labor (wife and I) over the years, when we poop out. There's a nice house and a decent 401(k) involved.

You can bet your life they would take it in a heartbeat, while yammering on about "redistribution". I am dead sure they wouldn't "redistribute" the stuff we leave them.

Joe Smith said...

"I have to wrestle with the fact that my son and his wife are Bernie-bro types."

I'm pretty sure my boys both vote D but they're not crazy lefties.

They both like nice things and work hard to earn the money to buy nice things.

With any luck, they will be close to 60 by the time I'm gone and will be mature enough to handle any windfall.

Mike of Snoqualmie said...

I've seen this device used in a Robert Heinlein novel: Son of a wealthy man had to accumulate $1,000,000 on his own before he could inherent anything from the old man.

Wholelottasplainin', you could do something similar for your son. Pick a goal that would force him into capitalism and destroy his socialist mentality. If he doesn't make it, then his inheritance would be $1 and the rest goes to charity.

tim in vermont said...

Europe was stolen from the Neanderthals and Asia likely stolen from the Denisovans.

Paul said...

Mr. Jacobs can, you know, just give it away and go earn a living like the rest of us.

Bet he would get far more respect than just being a rich kid.

Of course he could also go live in Cuba or China.... with none of his 'daddys' money.

tim in vermont said...

China was stolen from the “Red Deer Cave People."

Browndog said...

Birkel said...

The free market system cannot be replaced because it is merely a reflection of human behavior under conditions of scarcity. Those truths cannot be undone by government intervention.

Meanwhile the creation of Karl Marx, "capitalism", does not and cannot reflect human nature. It has no better chance of working than a system that denies gravity. Or magnetism.

Why people who support the free market recognition of human nature would use the word coined by an enemy of free markets is beyond ken.


This comment saved me some typing. Thank-you

Lurker21 said...

“When I think about outlet malls, I think about intersectional oppression,” Mx. Delahunt said. There’s the originally Indigenous land each mall was built on, plus the low wages paid to retail and food service workers, who are disproportionately people of color, and the carbon emissions of manufacturing and transporting the goods. With that on their mind, Mx. Delahunt gives away $10,000 a month, divided between 50 small organizations, most of which have an anticapitalist mission and in some way tackle the externalities of discount shopping.

Who says money can't buy friends?

*

I'm pretty sure if your title is "Mx." your pronoun probably isn't anything so plebian as "their," though.

Bob Smith said...

I can help these kiddies with that.

wholelottasplainin' said...

Mike of Snoqualmie said...

Wholelottasplainin', you could do something similar for your son. Pick a goal that would force him into capitalism and destroy his socialist mentality. If he doesn't make it, then his inheritance would be $1 and the rest goes to charity.

*************

Oooh! I like that idea! First I think I will have to extract an admission from him and his wife that their expectation---that we automatically leave THEM the fruits of our lifelong labor---isn't "redistribution", but part and parcel a feature of "the system" they claim to hate.

Then, it will be "You have to earn your inheritance".

I will enjoy watching them experiencing "cognitive dissonance".

RMc said...

As young'uns, my brothers and I would say to our mother, "We're hungry!"

She would respond, "You're not hungry, you're just bored."

These kids aren't hungry, they're just bored.

Bruce Hayden said...

“This entire discussion ties into the issue of what you will leave to your children?”

“If you are wealthy, will you leave them that wealth?”

“Or will you give them a little (or nothing) and leave it to various organizations?”

That is something that I respected Bill Gates for. Apparently, he set up to give each of his kids $10 million, not even 0.1% of his fortune at the time, but more money than either of them really ever needed, with the rest going to charity (his own).

College was interesting. We had some kids with “real money”, which at the time was probably $50-100 million, in my fraternity house. We had maybe one rich guy every year there. Typically you didn’t find out until years later. One of the biggest nerds in the house probably was worth $400 million when he finally inherited. You would never have known. One guy, a year ahead, was descended from late 19th/early 20th century NYC aristocracy. What finally gave it away was when his father gave him a seat in the NY Stock Exchange as a graduation present. But my brother joined the rich preppy fraternity house. A lot of those guys threw money around like there was no tomorrow. One got a new car every 3 months - Mercedes, BMW, Jaguar, etc. Another was a nephew of the Shah of Iran. They then graduated, and my brother found himself one of the only ones to have to get a job. The others had trust funds. It took him a bit to reconcile himself to the reality of not having a trust fund, and having to go to work, unlike most of his fraternity brothers. By the time he finally inherited a decent amount of assets, almost 40 years later, he was the tightest, with money, of the four of us. He has lived in the same (now) 60+ year old house for maybe 35 years now, and has had it paid off for 20 now.

gilbar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
gilbar said...

RMc said...
As young'uns, my brothers and I would say to our mother, "We're hungry!"
She would respond, "You're not hungry, you're just bored."
These kids aren't hungry, they're just bored.


I'm not sure that truer words, have EVER been spoken (about EVERYONE in america)
People eat because they're bored
People say they're hungery because they're bored
America has the highest obesity rate, of Any Country; of ANY time.
{yet, they'll tell us that ONE IN SEVEN CHILDREN SUFFER FROM HUNGER}

Hunger is when you haven't eaten for a few days, NOT a few hours
(think i'm being obtuse, and ignoring a Real Problem?...
America has the highest obesity rate, of Any Country; of ANY time.)

protip, if you are morbidly obese you are NOT suffering from hunger

Krumhorn said...

The little shits will be sure that they have their dachas.

- Krumhorn

Michael K said...


College was interesting. We had some kids with “real money”, which at the time was probably $50-100 million, in my fraternity house.


There was a girl, a sorority sister of my first wife, whose father had invented the parking meter. Nobody knew and she was quiet about her money. She did drive a Thunderbird but lots of other kids did, too.

Anyway, one of my fraternity brothers was distraught that he hadn't known. She married a hasher in her sorority house. I was a hasher in another sorority. We served tables and got free food in return.

Narayanan said...

a fool and his money are soon parted - some fools go to college and come out fooler

Narayanan said...

Francisco says in Atlas Shrugged : I was not born d'Anconia : I was expected to become one.

Wholelottasplaining may have whole lot of splaining to do

Narayanan said...

wholelottasplainin' said...
I have to wrestle with the fact that my son and his wife are Bernie-bro types.
-=====
why don't you set them a pop quiz to splain how Bernie ended up with 3 mansions?

Ambrose said...

It would take a heart of stone ...

Joe Smith said...

"That is something that I respected Bill Gates for. Apparently, he set up to give each of his kids $10 million, not even 0.1% of his fortune at the time, but more money than either of them really ever needed, with the rest going to charity (his own)."

Sure, but $10M is still $10M. Besides, it's easy to put your kids on boards of charities, etc. while you're alive, earning huge dollars for doing not much.

You wouldn't even need daddy's money when he'd gone if you save a bit.

Night said...

These are educated people who are ignorant.

Capitalism is what created poor people in the United States who would be the wealthiest people in any third world country.

Problems do exist in it when Bezos gains 80 billion in a pandemic where small business owners are going bankrupt. That is a market problem. Where the market is underregulated to the extent it allows one person to hog all the goodies. English Common law recognizes this and the need for regulation to prevent pure capitalism.

Capitalism does have room in it for socialism where it becomes humanitarian capitalism. But looking into the past will not reveal anything. You use socialism to create a basic safety net for health, food, housing, and entertainment. Then there is a boundary if you want more you have to compete for it.

I'm Not Sure said...

"Problems do exist in it when Bezos gains 80 billion in a pandemic where small business owners are going bankrupt. That is a market problem."

How is the government shutting down small businesses while allowing Amazon to stay open a market problem?

mockturtle said...

Bagoh20 asserts: The damaging thing about being born rich is that you never have to learn the value of money, and therefor the even greater value of learning how to make it. Rich kids are the poorest kind.

Not all rich kids are so treated. My BIL worked for his wealthy father but at the lowliest jobs in the firm. Of course, his father expected him to take over the business when he died but my BIL was not interested in doing so, and it was sold. He received a generous trust fund, though, as did my niece and nephew.

Narayanan said...

Janice Sue G. said...
Nothing new about this. It was described in 1970 by Tom Wolfe in.Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. The beneficiaries of this largess are scamming their naive patrons. It's been going on forever.
------------===========
In The Fountainhead there is a scene where Dominique says to Ellsworth Toohey : "I wanted to be present at the birth of a felony"

Was Ayn Rand ahead of the curve in matters cultural and social ?

Something to ponder!

mockturtle said...

Was Ayn Rand ahead of the curve in matters cultural and social ?

In a word, yes.

wholelottasplainin' said...

Blogger Bruce Hayden said...

College was interesting. We had some kids with “real money”, which at the time was probably $50-100 million, in my fraternity house.
**************

My experience was completely different. I went to UNH, a lowly "cow college" in the eyes of hoity-toity Ivy Leaguers. In my fraternity a few guys, identified as "preppies", had been to private schools rather than public high schools. They may have been rich, but we never saw much evidence of it. The parking lot out back never contained anything but a few used cars (except in the spring, when the STEM majors were buying nice rides).

So most of us were garden-variety middle class, or lower middle-class, many the first in their family to go to college. Almost all of us were from the North East.

Aside from a House Mother, an live-in old lady to help keep us civilized, we ran the entire 50-man operation ourselves. One brother made his rent by doing "wake-up call" and some minor day-to-day chores, another by assisting a hired cook, otherwise nobody was exempt from the work needed to keep the place kept up. A couple of Business majors kept the books.

Everyone did the rotating waiter duty at mealtimes, no exceptions. During Winter and Spring break we would do a thorough cleaning of all the "common" areas.

Sound socialistic?

Well, the thing is, if you failed academically and got kicked out of school, too bad. Your failure was yours, not because of "the system".

The way we saw it, we all had the same support system allowing us to focus on our studies, and if you didn't take advantage of it.....

Thing is, when I look at what happened to all those guys who eventually graduated, I count at least a dozen millionaires, four One-Star and Two-Star generals, and overall a bunch of very prosperous and accomplished people.

And as I said, most were the first in their families to get a college education, virtually none who were cream-of-the-crop academically before they got there.

Find me a country that does that.

Or should I say "did that".

(Oh and did I mention that I was the Social Chairman in that fraternity, and organized tremendously great parties, a lot like what you see in "Animal House"??)

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Static Ping said...

And for some reason they think they will be spared when the revolution comes.

There is nothing more capitalistic than scamming stupid rich kids.

DanTheMan said...

>>Or will you give them a little (or nothing) and leave it to various organizations

For those who say that they would not pass their wealth onto their children and would give it to a charity, you're just leaving your money to somebody else's children and not your own.

That $250K you don't give your kid in an attempt to "teach them to be independent" might very likely go to pay the salary and benefits of some mid-level manager in that charity you like so much.
Is that what you worked your whole life for? To pay a year or two of some bureaucrat's salary?
For God's sake, these are you kids. Give 'em the money. So what if they waste it? You had your life, now it's their turn. After you're dead it's a little late to keep parenting.
My Sicilian ancestors would torment me for all eternity if I was to insult my family like that.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

gilbar,

I do believe it's possible to be at once morbidly obese and hungry. In fact, the fatter you are already, the more difficult it is to go long without eating.

And as for countries w/obesity, if you aren't counting Samoa, you aren't counting every country.

wholelottasplainin' said...

DanTheMan said...
>>Or will you give them a little (or nothing) and leave it to various organizations

For those who say that they would not pass their wealth onto their children and would give it to a charity, you're just leaving your money to somebody else's children and not your own.

That $250K you don't give your kid in an attempt to "teach them to be independent" might very likely go to pay the salary and benefits of some mid-level manager in that charity you like so much.
Is that what you worked your whole life for? To pay a year or two of some bureaucrat's salary?
For God's sake, these are you kids. Give 'em the money. So what if they waste it? You had your life, now it's their turn. After you're dead it's a little late to keep parenting.
My Sicilian ancestors would torment me for all eternity if I was to insult my family like that.
******************************
Loads of ill-founded comments here.

* Why should I give the results of my life's labor to my kids to piss it away?

*what the fuck does "family" have to do with it"?

*why do you assume that I can't give my $$ to cancer research or the like?

* your Sicilian ancestors are more likely to be torturing you for you what their descendants did to pizza; I mean, pineapple, broccoli, alfalfa sprouts...

Come on! You already have a lot to answer for.

http://www.recipepizza.com/toppings/

wholelottasplainin' said...

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...
gilbar,

I do believe it's possible to be at once morbidly obese and hungry. In fact, the fatter you are already, the more difficult it is to go long without eating.

And as for countries w/obesity, if you aren't counting Samoa, you aren't counting every country.
**********************So...are Samoans obese BECAUSE they are hungry?

And how could anyone BECOME obese unless they kept eating more than past the point they were "hungry"?

DERP

DanTheMan said...

>> Why should I give the results of my life's labor to my kids to piss it away?
Look at as another opportunity to teach them the value of money, which if they piss it all away will make up for your failures to teach them that while you were alive.

*what the fuck does "family" have to do with it"?
Everything and the only thing. I can see you aren't Italian. Or worse, Sicilian. :)

*why do you assume that I can't give my $$ to cancer research or the like?
Go ahead, and earmark your donation to buy microscopes or whatever. They will gladly take it and do whatever they want with it. Most likely for salary (for somebody else's kid.)

* your Sicilian ancestors are more likely to be torturing you for you what their descendants did to pizza; I mean, pineapple, broccoli, alfalfa sprouts...

Right there with you, brother! You put chicken or kiwi on pizza in our house, and somebody's getting a beating! I grew up with lots of aunts and uncles from "the old country", eating 2" thick focaccia with bits of tomato, sausage, cheese, and basil inside the dough. We called it "Sicilian pizza".
To this day, my kids call Kraft Grated Parmesan "Crap in a Can". They know what Parmesan Reggiano tastes like.


jim said...

"There is nothing more capitalistic than scamming stupid rich kids."

One of the problems with inheritors of wealth, in general not just this case, is that they tend to become complacent about that wealth. Then they just sit on the capital, leave it is invested in something safe like real estate, perhaps getting a 2% return.

That is the betrayal of society should bother people. Our economy needs that capital to be allocated to new productive uses, and the capital market is how it gets put in the hands of people with ideas.

Hopefully its not just used to support the middle class status of charity bureaucrats. but even that will unlock some of it. More directly, let's have a land tax or capital tax. Keep it low, but not so low that leeches can live off dividends for more than 1 generation.

daskol said...

On the one hand, a fool and his money easily parted is not particularly noteworthy. But this Resource Generation thing is a nasty organization designed by those who want not just to separate the wealthy from their wealth, but more to the point, to shatter their families. With great wealth comes the attention of the worst kind of shysters, and these organizations are worse than shady firm selling Florida swampland. There is an ugly side to intergenerational wealth, including an aspect that tends some of the weaker beneficiaries to self-loathing effectively exploited by clever cultists like Resource Generation. They're just more barnacles accumulating on the increasingly beleaguered hull of our culture.