Re: A Challenge To All Extropians

Warrl kyree Tale'sedrin (
Fri, 1 May 1998 21:22:58 +0000

> From: Paul Hughes <>

> At last count, 94% of the wealth in the US is in the hands
> of the top 20%. The greatest discrepancy in US history. So my challenge to
> free-market advocates is to demonstrate how free-markets can bring increased
> prosperity to *more* people rather than concentrating that new wealth into the hands
> of fewer and fewer people.

Reality check.

Based on operating expenses, federal, state, and local governments
own approximately 40% of the wealth in the US. These governments,
allegedly, represent ALL of us, rich and poor alike. This means
that, in theory, the least wealthy 80% own 32% of the wealth in the
US by THIS MEANS ALONE. And if reality does not mesh with this
theory, the solution obviously is not in the hands of the government.

Outside of that, the claim that 94% of *other* wealth is owned by the
richest 20% even begins to be plausible only if one excludes pension
funds and mutual funds from consideration. Since pension funds and
mutual funds collectively own over half the stock and bond markets,
this is obviously a major exclusion and needs to be justified.
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