|The Rich Get Richer 富者更富|
|http://www.sina.com.cn 2004/05/14 18:58 视听英语Ladder AI杂志|
For most of us–working for a living and making ends meet–having a billion dollars is hard to imagine. Billionaire J. Paul Getty may have put it best w
But these days, the Billionaire’s Club is admitting a bunch of new members. Forbes Magazine’s annual survey of the world’s richest people indicates that, in 2003, there were a record 587 billionaires, including such surprises as Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling, and the 30-something inventors of the Google search engine.
But, while some things have changed, one thing has stayed the same for the past 10 years. Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft is still the world’s richest man, with $90 billion.
Mr. Gates has seen his fortunes rise with the price of Microsoft stock.“He, alone, has more money than the top nine on the list a decade ago,”says financial analyst John Harris.“In fact, his wealth would cover the whole of Manhattan if laid out in $500 bills.”One would think that, with all that money, he could afford a better haircut.
So what is Bill doing with all his money? Like other billionaires before him, Bill and his wife Melinda Gates are working hard to give much of the money away to charity. The William H. Gates Foundation provides grants for health, population and education projects worldwide, and the Gates Learning Foundation provides computer training for low-income children. Last year, these two organizations gave away more than $150m.
But does having billions of dollars change people?“Of all the billionaires I have known, money just brings out the basic traits in them,”said Warren Buffet, a billionaire himself.“If they were jerks before they had money, they are simply jerks with a billion dollars.”