Ben Stein: "Rich People Getting Rich Does Not Make Poor People Poorer"


BEN STEIN: It's always been true that a very tiny majority of the richest people in the world control an enormously disproportionate amount of the wealth and the poorest people controlled a very, very tiny portion of the wealth. But, you know, the way the media has been playing this is as if there is a finite amount of money in the world and that if rich people have a lot then poor people have less. But that's not the way it works out. If the rich people got rich by starting businesses and starting new technologies that gave more employment, more productivity, more wealth to the other people, then everybody gets richer. There is not a finite amount. Rich people getting rich does not make poor people poor.

BILL O'RELLY: There is an economic issue and I agree with you that economic freedom dictates that some people are just going to go off the chart and other people are just not going to have very much. But there is also a moral issue here. With 85 of the world's richest people controlling more wealth than 3.5 billion of the world's poorest people. And that's what Pope Francis was talking about. What is the responsibility there of the 85 richest? I don't know. I mean, everybody has to answer that question for themselves.

STEIN: I couldn't agree more. There is a moral issue. Nobody should be starving. Nobody should be denied proper medical care. Nobody should be denied proper housing. The fact that there are 85 very, very rich people is not the cause of any of these people being very very poor unless the people got to be rich by stealing like some dictators in third world countries. That is not the issue. The issue is how do we make the poor people better off with a combination of a safety net.

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