Hey, Bloomberg. You say this like it's a bad thing.
The top 15 richest Americans would have seen their net worth decline by more than half to $433.9 billion had Warren’s plan been in place since 1982, according to the paper by University of California, Berkeley professors Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman. Despite relying on some hypothetical assumptions, the calculations highlight what could be a key question in Thursday’s debate among Democratic Party presidential contenders: What should the U.S. do to address yawning income and wealth inequality?
Actually, no. The Bloombergers are very straightforward in the piece, and, to be entirely fair, the study by the two professors is based on some serious hypotheticals. But is this really going to be an issue of contention in Thursday night's debate?
For Amazon.com Inc. founder Bezos, his estimated fortune of $160 billion in 2018, before his divorce settlement this year, would have been reduced to $86.8 billion. Microsoft Corp. founder Gates would have seen his shrink to $36.4 billion from an estimated $97 billion.
Is someone really going to stand up there and defend poor Jeff Bezos and his paltry $86.8 billion? OK, maybe John Delaney if he were on-stage, but I don't see anyone else standing up to defend this relative impoverishment. Not to be too academic, but the only way to fight income inequality is to make incomes more equal, and the grotesque disparity that exists today needs to be fought with weapons as powerful as the ones it presently wields, in and out of government. This proposal is that kind of weapon.
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