I’m bigger than numbers 🔢
are you drunk?
Heyo! 👋 Did you know that when the rate of return on capital grows faster than that of wages, inherited wealth grows more than the total wealth people make from their incomes? And that today, more people are “gifting” capital to their kids in their 30’s and 40’s, which they would normally inherit in their 50’s and 60’s when their parents passed? And that the vast majority of these “gifts” are often real estate investments? Did you also know, that between 1870 and 1970, the value of these “gifts” was about 20-30% of the value of the total projected inheritance these kids would receive when their parents kicked the can, but today, the value of these “gifts” given while their parents are still alive is roughly 80% of their total projected inheritance? Thanks, Boomers! And finally, did you know that the total value of wealth and inheritance right now is the same as it was in the 1800’s - during the Belle Époque and the Gilded Age - but now it’s concentrated into the hands of even less people?? And that this congregation of capital will ultimately attain extremely high levels in our lifetime? Levels of which are potentially incompatible with meritocratic values fundamental to modern democratic societies??*
Anyway, this is a found objects poem of a conversation I overhead between a yacht-y American couple, who was about my age, in Croatia this week.
*All economic facts come from Thomas Piketty’s 2013 book, “Capital in the Twenty First Century”.
I’m bigger than numbers 🔢
our parents are leaving us half a house my brother will buy us out technically, yes they’re handing over the Scottish terrier I’m offski I need to pare down my skincare routine from five Aesop products to three due to inflation you know me I’m not scared my dad knows how to work that stuff out I’m working for the children you know what I mean? even if you’re not physically there, you can still make money as an aviatrix, babe I’m sure there’s a way you could occupy the same space indifferent worlds you know it’s no big deal our parents will always be there finish your wine! I want to go explore the island hey, are you drunk?
Okay poetry babies! Your homework for the week is to get nosy. Listen in on someone’s conversation and use it as source material for a piece. 1,2,3, go! 🏁
What a gift. Two poems in one. I like those numbers!
I really enjoyed the numbers trip you've taken us readers on with this issue. I feel a bit drunk after reading this, and I havent had one drop of alcohol.
(Or any other substance that could be considered influential on my cognitive abilities)