Vaniver wrote:I'm not convinced; lots of people lose everything / almost everything in market crashes, and it's strange to call that an externally imposed catastrophe when talking about wealth management. Living beyond one's means is more difficult when you're extremely wealthy; but people definitely manage to do it. I'd agree that externally imposed catastrophes are a major factor- I just don't think we have enough data to call it the most major.
That was rather my point about the data - that we don't have enough to conclusively determine things one way or the other. A 75-year timespan is simply going to include too many catastrophes of various kinds to provide meaningful information of the impact independently of them.
What we do have, is a solid understanding of the trends that should
, logically, be occuring independent of such catastrophes.
As for market crashes, well, are the wealthy responsible for such market crashes? Do market crashes disproportionately affect the more wealthy versus the less wealthy? Is this a factor that can actually be counted upon to disproportionately diminish extreme wealth?
Sam Adams wrote:Sure seems that it is pretty hard to stay near the top or even maintain the level of wealth that you had once you got to the top. Sure looks less than a trivial task based upon this data.
Seriously? That's your example? Bill Gates is intentionally spending his money for charity. So's Huntsman. The fact that you're associating these things with wealth management even though both of these individuals are attempting to actively divest their wealth
rather clearly implies the strength of my assertation: That external factors dominate the data in that regard, beyond and distinct from the nature of that wealth itself - the nature that I am discussing.
Sam Adams wrote:To support that premise, that means that the richest person will retain their position as the richest person, and their wealth will grow at a faster rate than the next richest guy, etc.
You clearly didn't understand the part where I discussed catastrophic external factors. Maybe you should go back and re-read that to learn what an external factor is.
You're trying to claim that the behavior of extreme amounts of wealth is due to the nature inherent to that wealth
(because that's what would be required to actually contradict my point). There is no evidence substantiating this, and the logic, which nobody has contested
, implies otherwise.
Sam Adams wrote:No, that's not the argument I am making. I am making the argument that maintaining wealth is a far from trivial problem.
But Madoff was
a fairly trivial problem, considering the scale of investment in the US today, and even he was an extreme statistical outlier.
While Madoff destroyed wealth he was given, trillions more equally callously invested dollars generated immense profits. I should in fact say that with the exception of economy-crashing events, most events do result in retaining and growing wealth - and only during those economy-crashing events is it the other way around.
Sam Adams wrote:Bernie wasn't a catastrophic factor. He was simply an effective factor at separating good wealth managers from not so good wealth managers. Obviously, the problem of detecting his scheme as fraudulent was a non-trivial problem.
Dude, if you could blame victims for being defrauded, that kind of fraud wouldn't be a crime
, it'd just be a bad deal. Your claim here is absolutely ridiclous.
The very fact that Madoff is
held legally accountable for his actions demonstrates that his victims are not responsible for having fallen victim to his scam.
Sam Adams wrote:Do you usually reject data without reviewing it?
I do if it's irrelevant
you what the basis is! In order to demonstrate your claim that wealth behaves in a way that the logic indicates it shouldn't
behave, you wouldn't just need income mobility data, you would need income mobility data cross-referenced with data regarding a variety of wealth-destroying catastrophes outside of the individual's control, and the aggregate would need to demonstrate that greater concentrations of wealth decay disproportionately with lesser concentrations.
Not only did you obviously not provide this, but you don't even seem to understand why you should.
Sam Adams wrote:You want to support that with some sort of reference?
I don't need to! You're
the one saying the data supposedly disagrees with the argument I've made and that you apparently have no problem with, you're
the one responsible for compiling that data.
And more importantly, you're responsible for actually understanding my argument so that you can understand what data to provide in the first place in order to demonstrate it in counterexample. You have clearly failed in this.