The New, Ultra Billionaires

It seems only appropriate to lead off a posting about the newest Forbes 500 list with this tid-bit:

Microsoft Avoided Billions in U.S. Tax, Senate Memo Says

especially since Number One in the Forbes list is Microsoft Founder, Bill Gates.  Whatever good Gates and his foundation is doing, it is privatized good, his decisions — probably fine– but at the expense of depriving the United States of taxes which are no longer available to the work decided upon in modestly democratic decision making.

Forbes 400

As the SF Chronicle puts it:

 Their average net worth is a “staggering” (Forbes’ word) $4.2 billion, the highest on record and up from $3.8 billion last year.

Total worth of the 400 richest is $1.7 trillion, which as a country would make them the 10th largest in the world, about the same as India and ahead of Canada, Russia and Spain in terms of gross domestic product.

Do you suppose that US well-being rose at the same 13% rate as their net-worth?  Not me.

And, by the way, the Forbes 400 is US only.  For the appalling list of all billionaires in the world, try this. [The US is still the run-away leader even if the top guy is not.]



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