Quotes of Note:
On Wealth and Greed
"When Forbes published our first list of the 400 richest Americans back in 1982, the poorest person to make the rarefied club was worth $91 million, while the richest, Daniel Keith Ludwig, topped out at $2 billion. That wouldn't even get Ludwig a spot at the bottom of the list today. Since 2004, only billionaires have qualified for The Forbes 400, and for the second year in a row a net worth of $2.1 billion was a prerequisite. With the bar so high, a record 221 American billionaires fell short"
“Disparity in wealth, especially when accompanied by disparity in values, leads to increasing conflict and, in the government, that manifests itself in the form of populism of the left and populism of the right and often in
revolutions of one sort or another,”
Billionaire Ray Dalio
"It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.”
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed.”
"Once capital becomes an idol and guides people’s decisions, once greed for money presides over the entire socioeconomic system, it ruins society, it condemns and enslaves men and women, it destroys human fraternity, it sets people against one another and, as we clearly see, it even puts at risk our common home.”
“I never intend to adjust myself to economic conditions that will take necessities from the many to give luxuries to the few"
Martin Luther King Jr.
“It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.” “No society can surely be flourishing and happy of which by far the greater part of the numbers are poor and miserable. ”
“When morality comes up against profit, it is seldom that profit loses.”
"To justify and extol human greed and egotism is to my mind not only immoral, but evil.”
"A just society is a society that if you knew everything about it, you'd be willing to enter it in a random place."
“We have always known that heedless self interest was bad morals, we now know that it is bad economics.”
Franklin Delano Roosevelt
"Widely unequal societies do not function efficiently, and their economies are neither stable nor sustainable in the long term. When one interest group holds too much power, it succeeds in getting policies that benefit itself, rather than policies that would benefit society as a whole. When the wealthiest use their political power to benefit excessively the corporations they control, much needed revenues, are diverted into the pockets of a few instead of benefiting society at large."
Joseph E. Stiglitz
"Still another danger is represented by those who, paying lip service to democracy and the common welfare, in their insatiable greed for money and the power which money gives, do not hesitate surreptitiously to evade the laws designed to safeguard the public from monopolistic extortion.
Their final objective toward which all their deceit is directed is to capture political power so that, using the power of the state and the power of the market simultaneously, they may keep the common man in eternal subjection.
They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty guaranteed by the Constitution.
They are patriotic in time of war because it is to their interest to be so, but in time of peace they follow power and the dollar wherever they may lead.”
“Human greatness does not lie in wealth or power, but in character and goodness. People are just people, and all people have faults and shortcomings, but all of us are born with a basic goodness.”