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Are We Financially Spoiled?

I’ve talked about the how I’m not in favor of the “Occupy” Protesters, and lately I am starting to wonder if we are Financially Spoiled in the United States?

Rich Kid
Green with Envy, but Already Rich?

Why I think We Are Financially Spoiled:

First, let’s start with a poster that I recently saw associated with the Occupy Protests, it was titled, “Shut Down the Corporations“.  It showed a bunch of happy people in the poster riding a bike, one with a cane or golf club, another with a teddy bear, and finally a soccer player kicking over the block representation of corporations.  Such statements are incredible short sighted and really kind of naive.

What’s naive is that the bike, cane, teddy bear and the soccer apparel, that the people in the poster had or were wearing all are likely produced by corporations!  In fact, without corporations those representations of the people wouldn’t have most if any of that stuff!  You see, corporation make things (like bikes, teddy bears, and loans) that the average people can afford.  Without corporations mass producing things (yes even loans are made for mass consumption) only the rich and very rich would have those things.  What is also incredible naive is that the web host of the websites that display this or similar posters (or sign, pdf, etc) are corporations.  Again this reminds me of the person trying to get rid of a tree branch, but is sitting on the wrong side of the branch while they are sawing.  It’s much like protesting Starbucks or bottled water companies while drinking them out in the protester groups.  How’s that for irony?

As someone from below the “making over $100,000 a year” middle class, I know and understand the value of the services and products that corporations provide.  It’s too fairytale-like to believe that corporations are the bad guys when in reality, they are a huge part of what makes American great.  Don’t believe me?  Then why have former communist countries converted over to either a capitalist or a hybrid-capitalist (look at China) society?  What country has it better than us?  Certainly not Cuba or North Korea… Why do you think Russia and China changed their economic model?

I hate to say this, but I think the protesters are only looking one move ahead or looking at the trees instead of the forest.  I think if they mentally looked right and left to see how it all works, that they would agree with me.  If they would mentally think out all of possible results of their actions, it’s obvious than any other societal model is not a desired economic or socially beneficial one.  If that’s not enough, go out and interview some business owners, or better yet start a business yourself.  Nothing is preventing you from doing so, and the experience would be incredible educational.

So compared to most people in other countries of the world, we, the people in America, are very financially spoiled, at least in my opinion.  If you don’t agree, try this link: http://www.globalrichlist.com/ and enter your info, or your parents (if you are in college).  Here is my spoiler to the globalrichlist.com link, if you make at or over $50,000, you are in the top 1% vs all the other incomes in the world.  Welcome to the 1%!

We (those in the US) have it very good financially?  Really, we do!

MR

22 Responses to Are We Financially Spoiled?

  1. I’m not against corporations, but I am against corporate welfare. I used to identify with the Wall Street protesters when they were railing against the bailouts. Once a large portion of them started calling for the cancellation of student loans and other types of crazy foolishness, I tuned out.

    I like how you point out how wealthy this country and its inhabitants are. So much so that a modest income of $50K puts you in the top 1% of the world’s income earners. I wonder how many Wall Street protesters would be willing to do some of the things they’re calling on corporations to do in order to close the worldwide income gap between the United States’ haves and the rest of the world’s have nots.

    • Hmmm, I haven’t talked much about corporate welfare, but I agree with you on that… It’s not fair, especially if it’s a publicly traded company.

      I find that big beautiful (literally) ideas like some of the Occupy Protesters have are great, but they need both high participation and follow through, and I don’t think it works because of lack of that kind of commitment without any reward.

      Both China and Russian of the past had socialistic models that were really great for the middle class, but they fell apart because of lack of motivation from the people. There will always be slackers, and overachievers in groups. To give each the same is counterproductive to the society. The slackers slack more and so do the overachievers.

  2. I think we have been spoiled in a way. The US has not had until very recently to think about the scarcity of resources. We are a very wasteful society and it has enormous consequences that we are just beginning to address.

    • Hmmm, I know we are a high consumption country, but I’m not sure how wasteful we are compared to other countries. I’m sure the two are correlated though. But it would be interesting to see the wastefulness/consumption ratio.

    • We are a wasteful society and we have been spoiled. However, we have to keep in mind the COST of living here. We live here, not in a third world country. We incur the costs of living in such a high tech country. Plus with the job market and the economy the way it is….I think the number of people that are spoiled has dramatically decreased.

    • Ditto to that. We here in North America live in a bubble. We have no idea what tough is. Even the poorest people in our countries are considered rich compared to other places in the world. We have so much and yet we waste it. We have no idea how fortunate we are.

  3. It’s the sense of entitlement that is at the heart of the Occupy movement. I think you make a very good point; they aren’t seeing the bigger picture. And if they really wanted to see a change, they need to be the change – not just stand outside for months on end protesting a series of “down with the wealthy” remarks.

    • Yes, down with the wealthy tears everybody down, not just the wealthy. I don’t think they are connecting the dots.

      And Wall Street definitely isn’t the place to do it. The white house is the place to protest, or starting their own businesses. The model works, that’s why are are one of the best countries to live in. Channel that wasted energy into doing great things instead of wasting time or trying to change society to something that obviously won’t work.

  4. I think about this a lot. Having been fortunate to travel internationally, in many countries the very wealthy live in what we in N. America would consider tiny apartments. In Brazil’s large cities, even in the toniest neighborhoods, the crime keeps residents locked in their homes and cars, unable to take a walk in their neighborhoods.

    • It’s sad that the wealthy overseas has to hide their wealth. Seeing wealthy people motivates me instead of me becoming envious. I think much of the population would be surprised to know that the wealthy was in the middle too until the worked both harder and smarter instead of coming home and watching a reality show…

      Of course much of the big TV Show media doesn’t help either…

    • Me too, I think I’m very fortunate to live in this country. If the protests were in other countries, those certain foreign governments could well be shooting at them.

    • lol, very funny 🙂

      Being rich is all relative… If I were more clever (and not married and without kids), I’m sure I could live on $10,000 a year, with the rest going into investments or real estate.

  5. It’s the incestuous marriage of the high-level corporate world and government (both federal and state) that should be targeted by these Occupy protesters. I think they’re only looking at one side of the story.

    • Yep, if you want to change the rules, you don’t go complain to the winners of the game. You go and have the rules change by the board maker, which is the government. But if you squash incentive, everybody loses and nobody wants to play the game at all. Look at Russia and China why try to guess about socialism, when history is a such a great teacher.

  6. I totally agree with you. Corporation is a very important in society, however I believe most of the top executive welfare is ridiculously high. Some of them are so greedy that cause problems and disaster that harm civilian. For instance, the financial crisis we experiencing is cause by greedy executives.

    • Having lived through the financial crisis, I respectively partially disagree. I think the environment was created by the government, and then taken advantage of by both people and businesses.

      I can tell you this though, no body like financial ruin, and those executives didn’t plan the financial crisis.

      What is funny about the protest is that they are protesting the wrong people. The CEO of Morgan Stanley didn’t even need a bailout, and even President Obama said JP Morgan didn’t cause problems. An still protesters were outside of his house protesting.

  7. Hey Money Reasons, yes, we are very financially spoiled to a certain degree, and I think the Global Rich List is a good way of showing just how good we have it!

    On the other hand, fraud is fraud and collusion is collusion, and even if we are well off, imagine how much better things could be yet, if we had a truly honest and free society.

    • I don’t know, I think class warfare is not the way to go, especially when we do have it good. When you are at the top, and especially in hard economic times, is it really wise to piss your employer off? Perhaps once the rich realize that they are not being respected, perhaps they’ll move everything overseas?

      A truly honest and free society only exists in fairytales. There is no place like that on the planet, and we are the top of the heap as is. Why ruin a good thing? Nothing good can come from waking sleeping giants.

  8. We as a nation are definitely financially spoiled, and other countries realize this. Most countries hate Americans because we generally have a sense of entitlement — an entitlement which is very similar to those top 1% earners that the occupy protesters were so against (although to a much lesser degree).

    • I agree, perhaps it’s because I heard stories of “The Great Depression, or perhaps because I stayed awake in history class in college.

      How funny we (United States citizens) must look as other countries protest atrocities, we protest that we want rich people to give us some for of welfare. Other are being shot at, while our groups are drinking bottled water and lattes.

      Let’s say somehow they get something change, do they realize that they (the protesters) might be ruining their change to ever get ahead in life? Doesn’t this sounds like a socialism movement? Didn’t China and Russia already try this economic and social model and it failed?