Monday, September 29, 2008

How Patriotic Is Your Average Billionaire?

One billion is a thousand millions.

Sometimes I think that the financial crisis we are supposed to be facing is all a big Bush hoax. Like the WMD’s. I have no way of knowing for sure, of course. I just have zero faith in our political “leaders.”

If things are as bad as they say, and an infusion of $700 billion is really needed. I know a place to find all that money.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the Billionaires of the United States of America (By my rough estimate, I’d say that there is about a billion of them). I’d say they could afford contributing a little bit toward saving the nation from financial collapse. I’d even support giving them a tax break for a charitable contribution. After all, think of how much money our financial system has given to them. Bush's tax breaks probably didn't hurt them, as well. Shouldn’t they give something to help save it? Maybe they could organize really huge bake sales.

If things are as bad as they say, why are most of these people virtually silent about “our” crisis? (Rank refers to their ranking in the list of "The World's Billionaires.")

Rank    Name   Age Net Worth ($Bil)

1 Warren Buffett 77 62.0
3 William Gates III 52 58.0
12 Sheldon Adelson 74 26.0
14 Lawrence Ellison 63 25.0
26 Christy Walton 53 19.2
26 Jim Walton 60 19.2
26 S Robson Walton 64 19.2
29 Alice Walton 58 19.0
32 Sergey Brin 34 18.7
33 Larry Page 35 18.6
37 Charles Koch 72 17.0
37 David Koch 67 17.0
40 Michael Dell 43 16.4
41 Paul Allen 55 16.0
41 Kirk Kerkorian 90 16.0
43 Steven Ballmer 52 15.0
43 Abigail Johnson 46 15.0
46 Carl Icahn 72 14.0
46 Forrest Mars Jr 76 14.0
46 Jacqueline Mars 68 14.0
46 John Mars 71 14.0
46 Jack Taylor 85 14.0
56 Donald Bren 75 13.0
62 Anne Cox Chambers 88 12.6
65 Michael Bloomberg 66 11.5
68 George Kaiser 65 11.0
73 Philip Knight 70 10.4
77 Edward Johnson III 77 10.0
87 Charles Ergen 55 9.5
87 John Kluge 93 9.5
87 Ronald Perelman 65 9.5
97 George Soros 77 9.0
102 James Goodnight 65 8.7
104 Donald Newhouse 78 8.5
104 Samuel Newhouse Jr 80 8.5
109 Rupert Murdoch 77 8.3
110 Jeffrey Bezos 44 8.2
113 Leonard Blavatnik 50 8.0
117 Dan Duncan 75 7.9
120 Pierre Omidyar 40 7.7
125 Philip Anschutz 68 7.4
127 John Menard Jr 68 7.3
136 Harold Simmons 76 6.9
137 Steven Cohen 52 6.8
137 Sumner Redstone 84 6.8
142 Eric Schmidt 52 6.6
145 Eli Broad 74 6.5
145 Stephen Schwarzman 61 6.5
154 James Kennedy 60 6.3
154 Blair Parry-Okedon 57 6.3
158 Robert Rowling 54 6.2
164 David Geffen 65 6.0
164 Samuel Zell 66 6.0
177 Charles Schwab 70 5.6
178 Robert Bass 60 5.5
178 Henry Kravis 64 5.5
178 George Roberts 64 5.5
178 James Simons 70 5.5
189 Micky Arison 58 5.4
189 Steven Jobs 53 5.4
203 Robert Holding 81 5.0
214 Patrick McGovern 70 4.7
214 David Murdock 84 4.7
222 Lester Crown 82 4.6
227 William Cook 76 4.5
227 William Davidson 85 4.5
227 Charles Johnson 75 4.5
227 Stephen Ross 67 4.5
227 Paul Milstein 85 4.5
236 John Sall 58 4.4
236 Whitney MacMillan 79 4.4
236 Marion MacMillan Pictet 76 4.4
236 P.MacMillan Keinath 76 4.4
236 Cargill MacMillan Jr 80 4.4
236 John MacMillan III 80 4.4
236 Harold Hamm 62 4.4
247 Henry Ross Perot 77 4.3
253 Ralph Lauren 68 4.2
256 Leonard Stern 69 4.1
256 Ty Warner 64 4.1
260 Leon Black 57 4.0
260 Ray Dalio 58 4.0
260 Herbert Kohler 69 4.0
260 Joan Tisch 82 4.0
260 Ray Hunt 65 4.0
277 George Lucas 63 3.9
277 Stephen Wynn 66 3.9
284 John Simplot 99 3.8
284 Rupert Johnson Jr 66 3.8
288 Richard DeVos 82 3.7
288 Gordon Moore 79 3.7
288 Steven Udvar-Hazy 62 3.7
296 Bradley Hughes 74 3.6
296 Richard Schulze 67 3.6
296 Daniel Och 47 3.6
296 John Sobrato 68 3.6
307 Robert Ziff 41 3.5
307 Ray Dolby 75 3.5
307 Bruce Kovner 63 3.5
307 Ira Rennert 74 3.5
307 Dirk Ziff 43 3.5
307 Daniel Ziff 36 3.5
307 Patrick Soon-Shiong 56 3.5
307 Edward Lampert 45 3.5
307 Stanley Druckenmiller 54 3.5
307 Ronald Burkle 55 3.5
307 Riley Bechtel 55 3.5
307 Stephen Bechtel Jr 82 3.5
327 Haim Saban 63 3.4
327 Dennis Washington 73 3.4
334 David Bonderman 65 3.3
334 Paul Tudor Jones II 53 3.3
334 Peter Kellogg 65 3.3
334 Leonard Lauder 75 3.3
334 Evgeny Shvidler 44 3.3
349 Edgar Bronfman Sr 78 3.2
349 Ronald Lauder 64 3.2
349 George Mitchell 88 3.2
358 Min Kao 59 3.1
358 A Jerrold Perenchio 77 3.1
358 Carl Pohlad 92 3.1
368 Lee Bass 51 3.0
368 Richard LeFrak 62 3.0
368 T Boone Pickens 79 3.0
368 Donald Trump 61 3.0
368 Ronda Stryker 53 3.0
368 Steven Spielberg 61 3.0
368 Donald Schneider 72 3.0
368 Richard Rainwater 63 3.0
368 John Paulson 52 3.0
368 Henry Hillman 89 3.0
368 Sid Bass 65 3.0
368 Kenneth Griffin 39 3.0
368 Diane Hendricks 61 3.0
396 Richard Kinder 63 2.9
412 James Coulter 48 2.8
412 Ann Walton Kroenke 58 2.8
412 Aubrey McClendon 48 2.8
412 Tom Ward 48 2.8
412 T Denny Sanford 72 2.8
412 Mitchell Rales 51 2.8
428 David Gottesman 81 2.7
428 B. Piasecka Johnson 71 2.7
428 Roger Penske 71 2.7
428 E Stanley Kroenke 60 2.7
428 Thomas Pritzker 57 2.7
428 Glen Taylor 66 2.7
428 David Rockefeller Sr 92 2.7
446 Steven Rales 56 2.6
446 Amos Hostetter Jr 71 2.6
446 Melvin Simon 81 2.6
446 Mark Cuban 49 2.6
446 Clemmie Spangler Jr 75 2.6
446 Leslie Wexner 70 2.6
462 David Shaw 56 2.5
462 Oprah Winfrey 54 2.5
462 David Sun 57 2.5
462 Robert Rich Jr 67 2.5
462 Penny Pritzker 48 2.5
462 Michael Milken 61 2.5
462 Craig McCaw 58 2.5
462 Theodore Lerner 82 2.5
462 Malcolm Glazer 79 2.5
462 Victor Fung 62 2.5
462 David Filo 41 2.5
462 Charles Dolan 81 2.5
462 David Rubenstein 58 2.5
462 Jim Davis 64 2.5
462 Daniel D'Aniello 61 2.5
462 William Conway Jr 58 2.5
462 Charles Brandes 65 2.5
462 Franklin Booth Jr 84 2.5
462 Edward Bass 63 2.5
462 Leonore Annenberg 90 2.5
462 Lynn Schusterman 69 2.5
462 Wilma Tisch 80 2.5
462 John Tu 68 2.5
503 Frank Batten Sr 81 2.4
503 Gordon Getty 74 2.4
503 H Wayne Huizenga 70 2.4
503 Charles Munger 84 2.4
503 Daniel Pritzker 49 2.4
503 Jay Robert Pritzker 43 2.4
503 Linda Pritzker 54 2.4
503 Karen Pritzker 50 2.4
503 Jean (Gigi) Pritzker 46 2.4
503 James Pritzker 56 2.4
503 Anthony Pritzker 47 2.4
503 Nancy Walton Laurie 56 2.4
503 William R. Hearst III 58 2.4
503 Matthew Bucksbaum 82 2.4
524 William Hilton 80 2.3
524 Robert E "Ted" Turner 69 2.3
524 Jerry Yang 39 2.3
524 Charles Butt 70 2.3
524 Thomas Barrack 60 2.3
524 Mortimer Zuckerman 70 2.3
524 Albert Ueltschi 90 2.3
524 Edward Roski Jr 69 2.3
524 Martha Ingram 72 2.3
524 Carl Lindner Jr 88 2.3
524 John Pritzker 55 2.3
553 John Anderson 90 2.2
553 Imogene Powers Johnson 78 2.2
553 Marilyn Carlson Nelson 68 2.2
553 Alfred Mann 82 2.2
553 Mary A.Dorrance Malone 58 2.2
553 John Malone 67 2.2
553 Omid Kordestani 44 2.2
553 Winnie Johnson-Marquart 48 2.2
553 Helen Johnson-Leipold 51 2.2
553 S Curtis Johnson 52 2.2
553 H Fisk Johnson 49 2.2
553 Phillip Frost 71 2.2
553 Barbara Carlson Gage 65 2.2
553 Tom Gores 43 2.2
553 Jess Jackson 78 2.2
573 S Daniel Abraham 83 2.1
573 A. A. "Red" Emmerson 78 2.1
573 David Hearst Jr 62 2.1
573 Jon Stryker 49 2.1
573 Phillip Ruffin 73 2.1
573 Nicholas Pritzker II 64 2.1
573 Clayton Mathile 67 2.1
573 James Leprino 70 2.1
573 George Hearst Jr 80 2.1
573 Austin Hearst 55 2.1
573 Bennett Dorrance 59 2.1
573 Neil Bluhm 70 2.1
573 John Catsimatidis 59 2.1
573 Phoebe Hearst Cooke 81 2.1
605 J Christopher Flowers 50 2.0
605 Thomas Lee 63 2.0
605 Frederik GH Meijer 88 2.0
605 Gary Burrell 70 2.0
605 Herbert Allen Jr 68 2.0
605 William Wrigley Jr 44 2.0
605 David Tepper 49 2.0
605 R Allen Stanford 58 2.0
605 Jerry Speyer 67 2.0
605 Sheldon Solow 79 2.0
605 Frederick Smith 63 2.0
605 Peter Peterson 81 2.0
605 Alan Casden 62 2.0
605 Margaret Magerko 42 2.0
605 Leslie Lampton 83 2.0
605 Joshua Harris 43 2.0
605 James Jannard 58 2.0
605 William Koch 68 2.0
652 Thomas Frist Jr 69 1.9
652 Donald Hall 79 1.9
652 Joseph Mansueto 51 1.9
652 Pat Stryker 51 1.9
652 Thomas Siebel 55 1.9
652 Henry Samueli 53 1.9
652 Michael Jaharis 79 1.9
652 Maurice Greenberg 82 1.9
677 Stewart Rahr 62 1.8
677 Kenneth Fisher 57 1.8
677 Jon Huntsman 70 1.8
677 Henry Nicholas III 48 1.8
677 George Lindemann 71 1.8
677 Alexander Knaster 49 1.8
677 David Green 66 1.8
677 William Connor II 58 1.8
677 Kavitark Ram Shriram 51 1.8
677 Dean White 84 1.8
677 Amar Bose 78 1.8
707 John Sperling 87 1.7
707 Peter Sperling 48 1.7
707 A Alfred Taubman 84 1.7
707 Michael Krasny 54 1.7
707 James Kim 72 1.7
707 Timothy Headington 57 1.7
707 Philip Falcone 45 1.7
707 L John Doerr 57 1.7
707 Edward Debartolo Jr 61 1.7
707 Louis Bacon 52 1.7
707 George Argyros 71 1.7
707 Edmund Ansin 72 1.7
707 Wilbur Ross Jr 70 1.7
707 Michael Price 55 1.7
707 Robert McNair 71 1.7
707 Richard Marriott 69 1.7
707 John Marriott Jr 75 1.7
743 Roger Wang 58 1.6
743 Peter Buck 77 1.6
743 John Calamos 67 1.6
743 John J Fisher 46 1.6
743 Alan Gerry 78 1.6
743 Marguerite Harbert 84 1.6
743 Stanley Stub Hubbard 74 1.6
743 Irwin Jacobs 74 1.6
743 Phyllis Taylor 66 1.6
743 Walter Scott Jr 76 1.6
743 Bernard Saul II 75 1.6
743 Ernest Rady 70 1.6
743 Richard Peery 67 1.6
743 Igor Olenicoff 65 1.6
743 John Morgridge 74 1.6
743 Bernard Marcus 78 1.6
743 Randal Kirk 54 1.6
743 Brad Kelley 51 1.6
743 Michael Ilitch 78 1.6
743 Richard Hayne 60 1.6
743 B Thomas Golisano 66 1.6
743 Thomas Friedkin 72 1.6
743 Fred DeLuca 60 1.6
785 Trevor Rees-Jones 57 1.5
785 Fayez Sarofim 79 1.5
785 Todd Wagner 47 1.5
785 Andrew Beal 55 1.5
785 Ronald Baron 64 1.5
785 John Arrillaga 70 1.5
785 John Arnold 34 1.5
785 Roland Arnall 68 1.5
785 Dennis Albaugh 58 1.5
785 John Abele 71 1.5
785 Mark Zuckerberg 23 1.5
785 Theodore Waitt 45 1.5
785 Billy Joe McCombs 80 1.5
785 Thomas Marsico 53 1.5
785 Randolph Lerner 46 1.5
785 Norma Lerner 71 1.5
785 Nancy Lerner 47 1.5
785 Marc Lasry 48 1.5
785 Jerome Kohlberg Jr 82 1.5
785 Vinod Khosla 53 1.5
785 Hamilton James 56 1.5
785 Jorge Perez 58 1.5
785 William Moncrief Jr 87 1.5
785 Gary Michelson 59 1.5
785 Joseph Jamail Jr 82 1.5
785 Jeremy Jacobs Sr 68 1.5
785 Jeffrey Hildebrand 49 1.5
785 Alec Gores 55 1.5
785 Christopher Goldsbury 65 1.5
785 Israel Englander 60 1.5
785 Bharat Desai 55 1.5
785 John Brown 73 1.5
785 Joseph Steinberg 64 1.5
785 Tamir Sapir 60 1.5
785 David Rich 63 1.5
785 Marc Rich 73 1.5
785 Marc Rowan 46 1.5
843 Louis Gonda 59 1.4
843 Anne Windfohr Marion 68 1.4
843 Robert McLane Jr 71 1.4
843 Robert Day 64 1.4
843 James Clark 64 1.4
843 Carl Berg 70 1.4
843 Robert Friedland 57 1.4
843 Arthur Williams Jr 65 1.4
843 Sanford Weill 75 1.4
843 Richard Scaife 75 1.4
843 Patrick Ryan 70 1.4
843 Leandro Rizzuto 70 1.4
843 James France 63 1.4
843 William Fisher 50 1.4
843 Robert Fisher 54 1.4
843 Richard Egan 72 1.4
843 James Dinan 49 1.4
843 Howard Marks 61 1.4
843 Tracy Krohn 53 1.4
843 Jerral Jones 65 1.4
843 Bruce Karsh 53 1.4
843 Robert Kraft 66 1.4
897 George Steinbrenner III 77 1.3
897 Ernest Stempel 91 1.3
897 Henry Swieca 51 1.3
897 S Truett Cathy 87 1.3
897 Herbert Simon 73 1.3
897 Herbert Siegel 79 1.3
897 Walter Shorenstein 93 1.3
897 Steven Roth 66 1.3
897 Barry Rosenstein 49 1.3
897 Julian Robertson Jr 76 1.3
897 Nelson Peltz 65 1.3
897 Glenn Dubin 51 1.3
897 Barry Diller 66 1.3
897 Ian M Cumming 67 1.3
897 Scott Cook 55 1.3
897 Daniel Snyder 43 1.3
897 Margaret Whitman 51 1.3
897 Charlotte Colket Weber 65 1.3
897 Hope Hill van Beuren 74 1.3
897 Kenny Troutt 60 1.3
897 Robert Naify 86 1.3
897 Michael Moritz 53 1.3
897 Thomas Hicks 62 1.3
897 Michael Heisley Sr 71 1.3
897 William Gross 63 1.3
897 Mario Gabelli 65 1.3
897 Lorenzo Fertitta 39 1.3
897 Frank Fertitta III 46 1.3
897 David Duffield 67 1.3
897 Timothy Blixseth 57 1.3
897 Arthur Blank 65 1.3
897 Stephen Bisciotti 47 1.3
897 Thomas Bailey 71 1.3
962 Arturo Moreno 61 1.2
962 Michael Novogratz 43 1.2
962 J Joseph Ricketts 66 1.2
962 Thomas Steyer 50 1.2
962 O Bruton Smith 81 1.2
962 Rajendra Singh 53 1.2
962 Richard Perry 53 1.2
962 Joyce Raley Teel 77 1.2
962 Wesley Edens 46 1.2
962 Leon G Cooperman 64 1.2
962 Richard Chilton 50 1.2
962 Stephen Case 49 1.2
962 Peter Briger Jr 44 1.2
962 Marc Benioff 43 1.2
962 Jerry Zucker 58 1.2
962 Samuel Wyly 72 1.2
962 Peter Thiel 40 1.2
962 William Kellogg 64 1.2
962 George Joseph 86 1.2
962 Johnelle Hunt 76 1.2
962 Marvin Herb 71 1.2
962 Pincus Green 72 1.2
962 Thomas Flatley 75 1.2
962 John Edson 75 1.2
1014 Sidney Kimmel 80 1.1
1014 Peter Lewis 74 1.1
1014 Gary Magness 54 1.1
1014 Dwight Opperman 85 1.1
1014 Peter Nicholas 66 1.1
1014 Marc Nathanson 62 1.1
1014 Leonard Litwin 93 1.1
1014 Arthur Rock 81 1.1
1014 Michael Eisner 66 1.1
1014 Mary Anselmo 79 1.1
1014 Mary West 62 1.1
1014 Gary West 62 1.1
1014 Alfred West Jr 65 1.1
1014 Norman Waitt Jr 53 1.1
1014 Oakleigh Thorne 75 1.1
1014 Alexander Spanos 84 1.1
1014 Charles Simonyi 60 1.1
1014 Dorrance Hamilton 79 1.1
1014 Leslie Gonda 87 1.1
1014 Paul Fireman 64 1.1
1062 Lynne Pasculano 66 1.0
1062 Edward Watkins Jr 72 1.0
1062 Richard Farmer 73 1.0
1062 Theodore Forstmann 68 1.0
1062 Jeffrey Gendell 49 1.0
1062 Robert Johnson 61 1.0
1062 Teresa F Heinz Kerry 69 1.0
1062 John P Manning 60 1.0
1062 Joseph Benvenuti 87 1.0
1062 Carol Jenkins Barnett 51 1.0
1062 Lee Ainslie III 44 1.0
1062 Marvin L "Buzz" Oates 84 1.0
1062 Roger Milliken 92 1.0
1062 Lowell Milken 59 1.0
1062 L Lowry Mays 72 1.0
1062 Barbara Hall Marshall 84 1.0
1062 Donald Marron 73 1.0
1062 Richard Manoogian 71 1.0
1062 Stephen Mandel 52 1.0
1062 Stephen Karp 67 1.0
1062 Daniel Gilbert 46 1.0
1062 Paul Foster 50 1.0
1062 Stephen Feinberg 48 1.0
1062 Jim Thompson 68 1.0
1062 Elizabeth Ann Hall Reid 85 1.0

If the financial crisis is real and actually exists, wouldn’t all of these billionaires want to help put a stop to it? How many have offered their services? Their money? None that I know of. If the financial crisis is real and actually exists, where will they put all of their money after the big collapse? Why, there will be nothing left but bargains for them to make even more money.

I’d be willing to bet my billions that Congress has been hoodwinked again (just like with Iraq) and that there is no real financial crisis. Bush just wants to shuffle money to some rich people. Either that or the man is insane, and he is just messing with us all.

What do you think? Would most of these people even miss a billion dollars?

Update:
From Let Risk-Taking Financial Institutions Fail by Ari J. Officer and Lawrence H. Officer:
Follow the money. Average Joes and Janes are not the holders of the other side of complicated, over-the-counter derivatives contracts. Rather, hedge funds are the main holders. The bailout will involve a transfer of wealth — from the American people to financial institutions engaging in reckless speculation — that will be the greatest in history.

6 comments - Post a comment :

Anonymous said...

you sir, are a fool.

Paul Thoreau said...

To anonymous:

Ouch.

Warren is that you?

Bill?

Thanks for your comment.

Anonymous said...

No borders pretty much says it. Think on the Great Depression. What did they do? Sold high, let it crash, and bought cheap (almost free). This situation is exploitation running amok and those billionaires' fears of losing their billion(s) are only probably equaled by the homeless people's fears of starving. What do you expect them to do and how do you expect to get them to do it? Something's very wrong.

Paul Thoreau said...

Anonymous:

The main impetus for me writing this post was the way that the financial crisis was presented to us. They told us that unless 700 billion dollars was rounded up over the weekend and thrown at the problem you might as well kill yourself on Monday, because the world was going to end. Or something like that. If the situation truly was this dire I expected the billionaires to act in their own self-interest and do something to stop the destruction of finance as we know it. As you pointed out acting in their own self-interest is what they tend to do. Without their money making financial institutions where would they be?

The world didn’t end. Money has been thrown at the problem, and the problem has gotten worse.

A secondary impetus was Bush himself. The man seems to constantly lie. I tend to believe the opposite of what he says. If he claims that the world is ending, I will believe that it is only beginning.

Also, the concept of (and the reality of) a billion dollars is rather incomprehensible to me. If you took a million or even a billion dollars out of one of the billionaire's bank account I doubt that they would even miss it.

Thank you for your comment. I liked it.

Anonymous said...

Hi:

Whom do you think among the list of billionaires are christian?

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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