“If poor people knew how rich rich people are, there would be riots in the streets,” Chris Rock said in a recent interview with New York magazine. The multi-millionaire comedian pointed out that poor people would be particularly shocked if they knew all the perks rich people get for being rich. “If the average person could see the Virgin Airlines first-class lounge, they’d go, ‘What? What? This is food, and it’s free, and they… what? Massage? Are you kidding me?'” he said. If you have never flown Virgin Airlines first class (or first class at all, for that matter), these lounges of which Rock speaks are where “Upper Class passengers” can kick back with some “amazing food, fantastic facilities and a chilled out atmosphere,” according to the Virgin website.
At London Heathrow Airport, the Virgin lounge has a spa and showers. Virgin Atlantic didn’t respond to The Huffington Post’s requests for comment. Lavish air travel is just the start. Rich people often get paid to wear jewelry. They get paid to lose weight. They’re given free laptops and TVs. They also get paid thousands of dollars to just show up at clubs.
They get gift bags just for attending big award shows, bags filled with goodies worth $20,000 — which is more than a full-time minimum wage worker earns in a year. Their kids’ birthday parties have corporate sponsors.
The divide between the haves and the have-nots is nothing new in America, but in recent decades that gap has been getting wider as the middle class shrinks and the very richest Americans keep getting richer. Meanwhile, economists are warning that the world is heading toward Gilded-Age levels of inequality unless we do something to stop it. It’s already worse than most of us realize. ( By Emily Cohn from HuffingtonPost.com )