Memo To The World's Billionaires
According to Forbes Magazine, you number 946 in the world. Joining your elitist club this year alone were 178 newbies "including 19 Russians, 14 Indians, 13 Chinese and 10 Spaniards,"plus the first billionaires from Cyprus, Oman, Romania and Serbia. Quite a mixed-bag, eh?
Now in the name of the 6 billion, 6 hundred million, 9 hundred thousand, etc., etc. of us poor bumblers gazing at you with unmitigated envy, I have a few questions. First off, do you ever feel poor? I mean, FEEL not think poor. For instance, in your dreams at night, are you ever desperate for a handout, or say, you can't get "home" because you lack the carfare? Or you just barely miss trains or boats? Dreams do tell, you know. Then, when you wake up in the morning, do you shake off the poverty ghost and think, "Ho ho, another day, another million!"?
Then who actually counts your money? Isn't that a continual but tedious problem? Must cost a small fortune in itself too. Are your billions in ten, twenty or hundred dollar bills? That must weigh a ton. Especially in tens. Having a billion dollars (or worse, lots of billions) seems to me to have a humongous mountain resting on your head. What about headaches? Isn't that a problem too?
But the major drag, I imagine, is how to spend your day with a billion bucks increasing by the hour while we workers struggle to improve our sorry lot by the year. I mean you don't have to work, do you? That would be redundant. Heck, you've already made it, right?. And besides, personal luxury is a pretty limited business. I mean how many meals can you eat at a time? Or sleep in beds per night? So what's left to accomplish? Sure, the world is in a mess. Plenty of people, and I do mean PLENTY OF PEOPLE are having a hard time just surviving. I suspect you know all that. But does it ever cause you to ponder about what you could do to help? Oh, I know about Bill and Melinda's foundation and Warren's gift to it and Oprah's academy in Africa for young girls and Angelina and Brad's adoptions in far-away lands, etc. and all those other non-profit foundations, all to the good, no doubt.
But according to Forbes, the combined net worth of you all increased just this year by $900 billion to reach a mind-boggling $3.5 trillion while most of us got poorer. That's enough to wonder that the heck life's all about on our troubled world, stuff like equality, human rights and the 'rule of law' and such.
I tell you what. Let's start a World Citizens' Billionaire's Club and you can all become members. The membership fee will be a paltry $50 million. That'll give it a starting net worth of $473,000,000. Then we'll start a bank, a world bank, and use the fees as capital, minus expenses and overhead, to print and issue world money against national currencies. (A Bucky Fuller idea, incidentally, who wrote that money was only 'crystallized energy' and proposed 'kilowatt dollars' as the world currency*). After all, national currencies are 'floating' out there between nations anarchically with no real solid base like goods and services. Billionaires like Soros have made theirs by speculating on the national currencies' daily worth against each other. No problem with global electronic synchronization. But that's no way to run a railroad. Or a planet.
Then there's wars to get rid of. Who can afford them anymore? Nations need plenty of national moola to keep that killing machine well lubricated. (You could say that all national currency today is blood money). And besides, if WWIII starts, your billions won't be worth the paper they're printed on.
Change the currency from national to global and, voila! wars will cease. We could even buy everyone a hybrid. Now that's something worthwhile for you all to think about, right?.
How about it Bill? Why don't you start the ball rolling since you're number 1 on the chart?
You wouldn't want Warren, Carlos or Ingvar or even Oprah to beat you out on such a noble mission. My cell is (802) 598-3211. Give me a call and we'll work it out.
Me? I only want to help.
Hey, I went to high school in a Rolls-Royce, too!
*Critical Path, St. Martin's Press, 1981