11 November 2011

1% Is Not THAT Big A Number

Amidst all the positive effects of the Occupy Movement (though I have mixed feelings about "awareness campaigns"  this does seem to be creating a good ripple in the pond) I am left with a growing horror at how many people don't seem to get it.  I am amazed at how many people really believe they are part of the 1%.  I mean sure, 1% of a country our size is a lot of people, but really, not that many.  Maybe like, oh I don't know, lets say in 100.  (Hahaha, math is a laugh a minute people, it really it.)

My girlfriend has a friend in NYC who is an investment banker.  He was telling her how he and his coworkers were making fun of the OccupyWallStreet people by posing with "We Are The 1%" on their iPads, you know instead of cardboard signs like the peasants have.  The only funny thing about this story  was Mr. Investment Banker's belief that he is, in fact, the 1%.  Sadly, he is not alone in this error. 

I think I can clear this up for everyone:  if you have to do anything above and beyond having a pulse to make a living, then you are not part of the 1%.   As long as you have to show up and do work, probably for someone else, then you are working class.  Make whatever you want, but unless you make a living just by existing, you are part of the 99%. 

Sure, there are many spots along the 99% spectrum that can make life grand.  Lots of people in this group live without worrying about money, but that is not the same as the kind of wealth we are talking about here.  When the wealthy are asked to pay more we are not asking more from the middle class with our SUVs and McMansions.  We are asking this of people who make more in a quarter than your entire cul-de-sac combined.  Hopefully the Occupy Movement will help more Americans understand this.