What If You Had as Much Money as Jeff Bezos? As the CEO and founder of Amazon, the multibillion-dollar online shopping company, Jeff Bezos is the Erichest globally with a current net worth of one hundred and ninety-three point seven billion dollars. Bezos can buy just about anything. So if you’re feeling good about that one hundred thousand dollar salary of yours, Will, Jeff makes that about every minute. That’s six million dollars per hour chase. I think it’s time to ask for that raise. So what would you do with all that money?
What are some of the most expensive items you could buy? Could you end world poverty forever? And why am I being rich, make you unhappy? If, and here’s what would happen if you had as much money as Jeff Bezos.
As a former Wall Street computer engineer, Jeff’s humble beginnings with Amazon began in 1994. It all started in his garage in Seattle. What began as an online store for books, CDs and software grew quickly during the Internet boom. By 1997, Amazon stock was up by 40 percent, netting Jeff a cozy 12 billion dollars. Fast forward 20 years. Amazon has dominated the online marketplace and has grown astronomically with all this newfound wealth.
Jeff made the single largest charitable contribution ever, 10 billion dollars, to help fight climate change. But as far as his net worth goes, that’s a tiny drop in the bucket. If you had Jeff’s fortune, how would you spend? How about a shirt made of pure gold for only two hundred and fifty thousand dollars?
Oh, shiny. Or maybe a two hundred and seventy-six thousand dollar Mongolian dinosaur skull suits your fancy. Any interest in a 14 foot preserved shark for 12 million dollars? Or if you want your tushy to feel pampered. How about a twenty-four-carat solid gold toilet?
Talk about flushing your hard-earned money down the drain with Jeffs’s riches. You could pick up a sixty-five million dollar Gulfstream private jet or even purchase citizenship to a foreign country. Want to be an Austrian citizen? A passport will cost you a whopping twenty-three point seven million dollars. Citizenship to Cyprus, Malta, Turkey, and certain Caribbean islands is also up for grabs with hundreds of billions of dollars.
The sky’s the limit. If you got the money overnight, likely be invited to apply for the Centurion Card from American Express, the ultra-exclusive credit card made of black titanium. Or, if you’re feeling more like Scrooge McDuck, you could liquidate everything and fill your home with a mountain of cash. But this would remove fifteen point seven percent of the US currency in circulation. OK, would all of this money make you happy? You might be surprised. A study published in the journal Nature Human Behavior found that the richer we get, the less happy we become.
Once you reach one hundred and five thousand dollars in household income, any more money tends to be associated with reduced life satisfaction and a lower level of well-being. And that’s not just because of higher taxes. The treadmill effect is a term coined by psychologist Elizabeth Lombardo. We think more things or money will make us happy, but as soon as we get it, we wonder what’s next? Could more happiness be around the corner?
Should I buy ten exotic cars instead of just one? Gimme, gimme, gimme. Both children and adults are affected by this phenomenon. Children of affluent families are more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety, and substance abuse later in life. So parents might want to slow down on the toys. Your three-year-old doesn’t need an iPad. Researchers at the Harvard Business Review have concluded that wealth is isolating. The more status we have, the more we feel a psychological urge to distance ourselves from others.
It can be due to competition or selfishness and a general lack of reliance on other people for survival. Many of the wealthiest elites are workaholics like Elon Musk, whose plans to colonize Mars, build electric cars, and develop brain implants, keep them busy enough that he only sleeps six hours a night. Being extremely wealthy also makes you a much higher target for kidnappers and the paparazzi. So good luck going out to your favorite restaurant. Aside from the glitz and glamor, could charitable donations bring you happiness?
Becoming a philanthropist could certainly solve a lot of global problems. Six hundred and eighty-nine million people are living in extreme poverty worldwide. This number is expected to grow by 115 million people this year due to the covid-19 pandemic.If you gave eight hundred and four million people just three dollars and 20 cents, the money needed to surpass the lowest poverty threshold, it would cost you just over a billion dollars.
Around two point two billion people don’t have access to clean water globally. But not even Jeff Bezos’s fortune could solve this problem entirely. You could, however, help the folks in Flint, Michigan. Around one hundred and forty thousand residents have been exposed to poisonous lead in their water supply. Replacing the lead pipes would cost you anywhere from a few billion to 50 billion dollars. Even if you’re not a billionaire or a millionaire, experiences bring us the most joy.
It won’t cost you a penny to volunteer at food banks or shelters, and there are plenty of opportunities to volunteer abroad and help the less fortunate. All in all, no matter what you earn, it’s important to be thankful for what you have. Still, I know some of you may be dreaming about buying your first Lamborghini or paying off your student loans. So maybe stocking up on Bitcoin could help. Just bear in mind this is not investment advice, but it is a story for another.