Someone apparently influenced by Marxism, and writing on Twitter under the handle “@btclbc,” says, “No man in history has ever worked hard or `earned’ a billion dollars. At that level your wealth has come from the exploitation of others. Plain and simple.” (His comment is at (https://twitter.com/marcuslemonis/status/1191950678958190592?s=12)
To which, I say, forget the first billion and let’s talk about all the billions beyond that, that someone can earn only by hard work. So, here’s a billionaire who, thanks to his billion, can afford to hire, organize, train, and equip 10,000 workers to carry out his plans.
Isn’t he responsible for the results and didn’t he work hard at putting it all together and achieving the outcome he wanted? which outcome, let us assume, is the accumulation of his second billion.
Or do you think that 10,000 workers happened to meet at a football game, say, and all burst out with “Hey, gang, let’s all go and produce some product we never thought of, by means we know not how, with equipment we know not what?”
The billionaire earned his second billion…and his 100th billion by providing the guiding, directing intelligence at the highest level in the organization he controls, and using his capital to carry out his plans, which is also how he earned his first billion.
His labor is primarily a labor of thinking, planning, and decision making and its results vary with the means he employs for carrying out his plans. Just as a manual worker digs a hole of very different size with the same amount of labor and effort, depending on whether he digs with his bare hands, a shovel, or a steam shovel, so the results achieved by a capitalist vary with the size of the capital he employs.
His position is analogous to that of Columbus, Napoleon, or the leader of a country. It is analogous to that of whoever in an organization of people provides the guiding, directing intelligence at the highest level in the achievement of a goal.
Just as the credit for the discovery of America, the French victory at Austerlitz, and the foreign policy of a country, belongs respectively to Columbus, Napoleon, and the country’s leader, so, in a business firm, it belongs to such men as Bezos, Gates, and Zuckerberg, and before them, to men like Ford and Rockefeller, Carnegie and Vanderbilt.
Gates played an enormous role in making possible the computer age, Bezos in adapting retailing to the existence of the computer age, and Zuckerberg in adapting social interaction to the existence of the computer age.
Transforming the economy of the world in these ways resulted in and requires vast fortunes. The fortunes were earned by the introduction of improvements, which resulted in high profits. The high profits were overwhelmingly saved and reinvested, providing the capitalists with more capital with which to pursue their plans.
The fortunes were and are used in bringing the improvements to billions of people around the world and in financing the development of still further improvements.
Just like the crew members on Columbus’s ships, the soldiers in Napoleon’s army, and a country’s embassy employees, the employees of the billionaires, and of businessmen/capitalists in general, are the "HELP" in producing the results achieved by the billionaires.
For more, be sure to read my essays “HOW THE 1 PERCENT PROVIDES THE STANDARD OF LIVING OF THE 99 PERCENT" and “DEMAND FOR COMMODITIES IS NOT DEMAND FOR LABOR” VERSUS THE MARXIAN EXPLOITATION THEORY. They’re 99¢ each at https://amzn.to/32T8Sg4 and http://amzn.to/2AIKl0d respectively.