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Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich. Napoleon Bonaparte
The ordinary surroundings of life which are esteemed by men (as their actions testify) to be the highest good, may be classed under the three heads – Riches, Fame, and the Pleasures of Sense: with these three the mind is so absorbed that it has little power to reflect on any different good. Baruch Spinoza
Experience declares that man is the only animal which devours its own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the governments of Europe, and to the general prey of the rich on the poor. Thomas Jefferson, letter 1787
The educated man pictures a horde of submen, wanting only a day’s liberty to loot his house, burn his books, and set him to work minding a machine or sweeping out a lavatory. ‘Anything,’ he thinks, ‘any injustice, sooner than let that mob loose.’ He does not see that since there is no difference between the mass of rich and poor, there is no question of setting the mob loose. The mob is in fact loose now, and – in the shape of rich men – is using its power to set up enormous treadmills of boredom, such as ‘smart’ hotels. George Orwell, Down and Out in Paris and London
The mass of the rich and the poor are differentiated by their incomes and nothing else, and the average millionaire is only the average dishwasher dressed in a new suit. ibid.
When a man tells you that he got rich through hard work, ask him whose. Don Marquis
The rich run a global system that allows them to accumulate capital and pay the lowest possible price for labour. The freedom that results applies only to them. The many simply have to work harder, in conditions that grow ever more insecure, to enrich the few. Democratic politics, which purports to enrich the many, is actually in the pocket of those bankers, media barons and other moguls who run and own everything. Charles Moore
I am opposing a social order in which it is possible for one man who does absolutely nothing that is useful to amass a fortune of hundreds of millions of dollars, while millions of men and women who work all the days of their lives secure barely enough for a wretched existence. Eugene Victor Debs
While it is correct to insist that rights should be balanced by obligations, there is a dangerous tendency for obligations – to search for work, to save for pensions - to be imposed upon the poor, while rights – to enjoy low marginal rates of tax, to opt out into privileged private education – are voluntarily exercised by the rich. Will Hutton, The State to Come
Get rich or die trying. Inside Man 2006 starring Denzel Washington & Clive Owen & Jodie Foster & Christopher Plummer & Willem Dafoe & Chiwetel Ejiofor & Carlos Andres Gomez & Kim Director & James Ransone & Bernie Rachelle & Peter Gerety & Victor Colicchio et al, director Spike Lee, kid hostage
I might be an asshole, but I worked hard to become one. 2 Days in the Valley 1996 starring Charlize Theron & Jeff Daniels & Danny Aiello & Greg Cruttwell & James Spader & Teri Hatcher & Glenne Headly & Eric Stoltz & Peter Horton & Marsha Mason & Paul Mazursky et al, director John Herzfeld, rich bloke
That’s the only thing’s that’s come out of this war – the bloody rich have got richer. Al’s Lads (UK) aka Capone’s Boys (US) 2002 starring Marc Warren & Kirsty Mitchell & Peter Pedrero & Ralf Little & Al Sapienza & Julian Littman & Scott Maslen & Stephen Lord & Richard Roundtree & Ricky Tomlinson et al, director Richard Standeven, Billy
Mr Poirot, I’m a rich man. Naturally, men in my position have enemies. Murder on the Orient Express 1974 starring Albert Finney & Lauren Bacall & Martin Balsam & Ingrid Bergman & Jacqueline Bisset & Sean Connery & John Gielgud & Wendy Hiller & Anthony Perkins & Venessa Redgrave & Richard Widmark & Michael York et al, director Sidney Lumet
You will get rich here or you’ll be killed. A Fistful of Dollars [Per Un Pugno Di Dollan] 1964 starring Clint Eastwood & Marianne Koch & Gian Maria Volonte & Joseph Egger & Antonio Prieto & Sieghardt Rupp & Wolfgang Lukschy et al, director Sergio Leone, village man to Man With No Name
Are we going to get rich, pa? Once Upon a Time in the West [C’era Una Volta Il West] 1968 starring Henry Fonda & Charles Bronson & Claudia Cardinale & Jason Robards & Gabriele Gerzetti & Paolo Stoppa & Woody Strode & Jack Elam & Keenan Wynn & Frank Wolff & Lionel Stander, director Sergio Leone, daughter
We had been rich. And then well we weren’t. Hyde Park on Hudson 2012 starring Bill Murray & Laura Linney & Samuel West & Olivia Colman & Elizabeth Marvel & Olivia Williams & Elizabeth Wilson & Andrew Havill et al, director Roger Michell
The rich will strive to establish their dominion and enslave the rest. They always will ... have the same effect here as elsewhere, if we do not by government keep them in the proper spheres. Gouverneur Morris
There’s no way that Michael Jackson or whoever Jackson should have a million thousand droople billion dollars and then there’s people starving. There’s no way! There’s no way that these people should own planes and there’s people don’t have houses. Apartments. Shacks. Drawers. Pants! I know you’re rich. I know you got 40 billion dollars, but can you just keep it to one house? You only need ONE house. And if you only got two kids, can you just keep it to two rooms? I mean why have 52 rooms and you know there’s somebody with no room?! It just don’t make sense. Tupac Shakur
Only the richest 10% come out ahead. Paul Grignon, Money as Debt III: Evolution Beyond Money, 2006
Fortunes are being accumulated in the UK on a scale we haven’t seen for a hundred years. We’ve been told that the way the super-rich creates wealth makes all of us, well, a bit better off. But does it? This time around they’ve used new and different financial techniques to enrich themselves. Robert Peston, Super Rich: The Greed Game, BBC 2008
We are picking up the bill in a global greed game. ibid.
London is the capital of capital. ibid.
They’ve created ghettos of fabulously expensive property. ibid.
[Alan] Greenspan slashed rates to just 1%, and the supply of credit soared. ibid.
Since 1997 Labour has tried to make the United Kingdom as a land fit for the super-rich. ibid.
By the start of the twenty-first century these two factors – the power of leverage and low taxes for enterprise – gave birth to a new set of business superpowers; among them are the private equity money who borrow huge sums of money to buy whole companies. ibid.
Colossal funds have been accumulated by hedge fund managers. ibid.
The pay structure they devised: they wrote the rules of the greed game so they couldn’t lose. ibid.
Wall Street banks started by selling good quality loans to raise money and then looked at what else would be sold. ibid.