Why The 1% Shouldn’t Be Hated
“Taken literally, the top 1 percent of American households had a minimum income of $516,633 in 2010 — a figure that includes wages, government transfers and money from capital gains, dividends and other investment income…And in New York City…the top 1 percent have an average of $3.7 million in income.” – Washington Post
We have probably all heard the debates, Facebook rants, and overall bitching associated with the 1%. From the occupy Wall Street movement to proposals for higher taxes, so many people have a hatred for the richest of the rich. I cannot personally tell you how many times I have rolled my eyes when a friend or colleague climbs up on his soapbox about this class of people. “They just have too much money!” Yeah, and you drink too much beer…your point? “They didn’t NEED that jet airplane!” And you didn’t NEED that brand new Mercedes…now did you? I mean, lets be real here.
The fact of the matter is, if you want to be completely fucking honest, is that you are jealous that they have what you want. It isn’t at all that the 1% crowd is such a horrible place to be…it’s just that your name isn’t on the guest list…so you hate them. But we have got to get over this jealousy and judgment and move into a place where we can be happy for those that have hit the top of the financial ranks before we did. Because, it is only then, that we can learn from them and move in that direction ourselves.
Just recently, results were published from the 2012 Survey of Affluence and Wealth in America that showed some pretty interesting statistics. According to their findings, the majority of those listed in the 1% are actually middle class success stories, and not just trust fund brats like many assume. In fact, the survey shows that:
• – 67% grew up in a middle class or poorer household.
• – 85% made their wealth in their lifetime.
• – 76% describe themselves as “Middle Class” at heart.
• – 3% is the sum total of their assets that they inherited.
So, instead of blasting these individuals on our Twitter accounts and hating anything that is associated with them, we should take a step back and appreciate what they have accomplished. In many cases, the 1% may have literally paved the way for entrepreneurs and business people just like you and me to reach the top more quickly. And, besides that, since when is being successful something to be hated for?
So, while I am not opposed to watchdog programs for Wall Street, the changing of tax and IRS laws, or even programs to close the “gap” between the rich and the poor, I will always embrace the accomplishments, risks, and hard work that make up the 1%. And when I get there myself, I hope that others will do the same for me.
[Image via Shutterstock, Ferrari image via oksana.perkins/Shutterstock]