spent $30 billion (really, only $2 billion then) just on the Bomb and won the Second World War. Twenty years later, the Cold War and the Soviet Union inspired President John F. Kennedy to support the Apollo Project. Sending Man to the Moon cost us $100 billion ($25 billion then).
George the Younger Bush wasted $3 trillion (that's $3,000 billion) on terrorists! Only government can squander so much money so quickly.
All the above is backdrop to the next phase of future economic development. The American and European governments show little interest today in doing anything inspirational. There is a perceptible shift to the power of billionaires, who have no one to answer to than their emotions.
Forbes has an annual issue on billionaires, and on the latest cover (above) is 6' 8" Mikhail Prokorov, only #69 with a net worth of $13 billion, but he owns the NBA Brooklyn Nets and could well become the next president of Russia. Here is their map:
In 1916, John Davison Rockefeller became the first American billionaire. The top five billionaires today are:
#1 Carlos Slim Helu $73 billion telecom Mexico
#2 Bill Gates $67 billion Microsoft U.S.
#3 Amancio Ortega $57 billion Zara Spain
#4 Warren Buffett $54 billion Berkshire U.S.
#5 Larry Ellison $43 billion Oracle U.S.
There are 1426 billionaires worth $5.4 trillion. The USA has the most, 422, worth $1.87 trillion, with Asia Pacific next at 386 and Europe #3 with 366.
How would they compare in history? Inflation adjusted, not that well, actually:
- #1 Mansa Musa I – $400 Billion (he rule West Africa's Malian Empire in the early 1300's)
- #2 The Rothschild Family – $350 Billion
- #3 John D. Rockefeller – $340 Billion
- #4 Andrew Carnegie – $310 Billion
- #5 Nikolai Alexandrovich Romanov – $300 Billion
- #6 Mir Osman Ali Khan – $230 billion (he ruled part of what is now India, passed away in 1967 and had 149 children)
- #7 William The Conqueror – $229.5 Billion
- #8 Muammar Gaddafi – $200 Billion
- #9 Henry Ford – $199 Billion
- #10 Cornelius Vanderbilt – $185 Billion
- #11 Alan Rufus – $178.65 billion
- #12 Bill Gates – $136 Billion
However, these mega-wealthy today are, really, the only hope for out of the box monumental efforts to save Planet Earth and Humanity.
THIS POSTING IS LINKED TO iBlueRevolution, a blog site dedicated to stimulating financial support for the Pacific International Ocean Station.