I’ve said this before.
Tonight, I had a breakdown
This happens with disabililities, when you realize something is only going to get worse, and put you farther behind, and you’re going to always have to fight to be ten times better than people around you suspect, just to meet their expectations of a normal person.
For a while, I’ve been aware that I’ve never seen my own daughter’s face clearly. I catch it in bits and pieces, but I can never fully see her as she is. I’ve had to tell her, when she asks me about something, “Baby, mommy’s eyes don’t work so well. They’re not like yours.” And she says to me, “Mommy, your eyes are beautiful and brown.” I can’t tell you what that feels like.
I don’t know how to explain to her how guilty I feel, that when I’m teaching her to read, that sacred art that is the key to all knowledge, part of me is hoping she excels, so that she can read things to me. The guilt and frustration that comes with that is unparalleled. I don’t know how to tell her that I love her and am grateful for every second, but please baby, help mommy, because she wants to help you.
I know that soon I’m going to have to use my cane, and she’s going to feel what I feel helping my parents in their wheelchairs, but at so young an age. I don’t know how to prepare her for that and it’s so unfair. So impossibly unfair.
I don’t have a way to explain that. It kills me, to wait for her to mature so that I can make her understand.
It kills me. It makes me weep like no bully ever has. I don’t have the capacity to see, help my daughter. If she was desperate for help, I’d be limited in how I could respond. That fucking ends me.
My husband is gold. But he gets it. He understands what I’m feeling. That’s all I can ask.
Nothing a good Cuban cigar won’t cure.
My friend, I’ve been an outsider most of my life. What I can tell you is that you should never force yourself into friendships. The ones who arrive are the ones who have a place there. Continue on, be introspective. Adjust, but never compromise integrity. Friends will happen, give it time.
Human parents are, in fact, children. They seldom have the luxury of considering things the way I do. Which means they will inevitably fail. I will also, but mine is forgiven, because. I am different, and secondary. So I cannot dispute this kind of preference.
I can say your families are people, they have tiny lifespans, they make mistakes, be compassionate, but never in a way that sacrifices who you are.
Thank you for being confident of me and fond. I will endeavor to live up to it.
I am. The nausea is gone. It was very acute. Apparently the specific concentrations of the medication that I was given have that is a symptom. I am still in a bit of pain, but I am doing everything possible. I’ve been laying about eating most of the day
So there’s been a lot of discussion floating around regarding billionaires and society, and I’ve noticed that most people have no idea what a billion dollars is for practical purposes – people tend to think of it as a vague, nebulous concept of “a lot of money” rather than something concrete you can wrap your head around. This is understandable, considering 1) a billion of anything is really hard to visualize and 2) the average person has no real reference point for an amount of money that large. So I’m going to try to break it down for everyone:
Okay, so imagine you have a billion dollars. What can you actually buy with that?
This is a mega mansion that will have an Imax cinema, a bowling alley, and a spa when it’s fully complete. It costs around 4.6 million dollars.
Now let’s buy one of these in every country in Europe – that’s 50 mansions you now own. So how are you going to travel between all your many homes?
This is a Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, the fastest street-legal car in the world. It has a maximum speed of a face-melting 254 mph and can go from 0 to 60 mph in 2.5 seconds. It costs around 2.5 million dollars.
Let’s buy a dozen of them – you know, in case you total a few of them racing around the highway. But maybe a sports car is still to slow for you:
This is an
Embraer Lineage 1000. It’s private jet that can seat up to 19 passengers, and we’re going to buy it for 53 million dollars.
How about a boat? The Tatoosh is a 303 ft private yacht, meaning it’s longer than a football field. We’ll take it for 369 million dollars.
Do you like art? Just for fun let’s buy Monet’s most expensive painting ($90 million) Van Gogh’s most expensive painting ($151 million), and this monstrosity, which is made with 8,601 diamonds and costs 65 million dollars.
Now that we’ve gone on our ludicrous and absurdly wasteful shopping spree, how much money do we have leftover? About 12 million dollars, which is almost an order of magnitude more than the average American with a bachelors degree or higher earns in a lifetime ($1.8 million). So if you for whatever reason decided to buy the 50 houses, 12 sports cars, plane, yacht, art pieces etc. and immediately set them all on fire, you would still have enough cash leftover so you never would have to work again if you so chose. This is what it means to be a billionaire.
But we’re not done yet.
The richest person in the world is Bill Gates, with a net worth of 86 billion dollars. If he liquidated his assets, what could he buy?
Well, for starters, the Burj Khalifa – the tallest man-made structure in the world at 2,722 feet tall, costing around 1.5 billion dollars.
The Large Hadron Collider, the world’s biggest and most advanced particle accelerator for 9 billion dollars.
The Hubble Space Telescope for 10 billion dollars (including 20 years of operating costs).
The Three Gorges Dam, the largest power station in the world, more than a mile wide.
And to top it all off, a fleet of five
Nimitz-class aircraft carriers, the largest military vessels ever built for around 8.9 billion dollars each. If you look at the picture very closely you can see the people standing on it for reference.
If Bill Gates bought all of this, he would still have around 2.3 billion dollars leftover. That’s enough to go on the billionaire shopping spree I described above twice over (so 100 mansions, 24 sports cars etc.) and still have hundreds of millions of dollars in the bank when it’s all said and done.
But we’re not done yet.
Currently, it’s estimated that there are 2,043 billionaires alive today, with a combined net worth of around 7.67 trillion dollars.
This is Russia, the largest country in the world, extending more than six and a half million square miles, with a population of more than 144 million people. The United Kingdom could fit inside Russia 70 times.
In 2016 Russia’s gross domestic product was about 1.28 trillion dollars. This means that if the two thousand and some odd richest people in the world – less than half of 0.1% of 0.1% of the Earth’s population – liquidated and pooled their assets together, they could buy every single product and service made in Russia for almost 6 years.
So yeah, make of that what you will.
Let this sink in next time someone tells you capitalism allocates wealth according to contribution. It’s empty ideology meant to shield billionaires from a revolutionary redistribution of wealth and power.
Down with capitalism