As you all obviously know, the wealth gap become a pretty hot topic over the past few years…a hotter topic than it’s ever been before. When one analyzes events that have taken place over the past 5-6 years, it’s understandable how people would become more and more frustrated about what some are calling a wealth gap. But the entire story isn’t being told.
When mentioning the wealth gap, it comes as no surprise that no one ever talks about the creativity and productivity gap as well. We always hear about the growing divide between rich, poor and “middle class” yet no one ever talks about the ways in which these people live and/or their level of productivity. If you let your average person tell it, they would say that a guy who flips burgers at McDonald’s deserves to be paid the same, if not more than Ray Kroc (the founder of the company). They don’t take into account that while the burger flipper may be the one performing the function of helping the store to operate, they don’t understand that if it weren’t for the founder(s), the burger flipper wouldn’t even have a job. Not only that, the burger flipper takes on little to no risk by coming to work everyday, therefore he and the other employees are the safest in the company. Whereby the founder put in years of thought, hard work and capital with no guarantee of success in order to make his business work. The owner is the one who took the biggest risk of all and therefore deserves the highest reward.
Secondly, addressing the creativity/productivity gap in more detail. Just face the facts — some people are going to be more productive than others and create more than others and will therefore earn a bigger piece of the pie as a result. There’s nothing immoral about that or wrong about that. IE: If we’re on some remote island and fishing is our main source of food. Islander #1 fishes with a makeshift fishing pole and captures just enough to feed himself on a daily basis. Whereas, Islander #2 creates a net and captures more fish than he can eat in even a month. Fisherman #2 then “sells” those fish to other islanders, thereby making their lives easier. Now the question becomes — is Fisherman #2 wrong for having becoming wealthy as a result of thinking of a way to produce more and provide people with a needed product or service? It’s a rhetorical question.
The way that the American economy is setup, it actually rewards those who take the time to learn how the game is played. Despite the talks about a widening gap between rich and poor, there is still lots of opportunity for those that will educate themselves and do the work that is required. Unfortunately, many never bother to understand the economy in which they live and they wonder why they never seem to thrive in that economy. But I can’t complain because that simply means less competition for those of us that will take the time to educate ourselves and act on it.
Conclusion: You have to be crazy to think that a guy who works within a company deserves the same share of the pie as the guy who worked to create a product or serve that helps millions of people. Also, producers and creators are usually great thinkers, whereas workers are abundant and expendable. You can pull any ole Joe off the street to do most jobs if you simply train him, but it takes a thinking man to create a business. Therefore, those who work with only their body will always get paid less than those who work with their mind. Again, nothing unfair about that.