Say what you will about the rich. They have provided excellent entertainment value in the past five years.


Getty Images. MARSEILLES, FRANCE: Oracle chief Larry Elison, sprays champagne with members of the US syndicate BMW Oracle, after qualifying for the America.

What with the Schwarzman partythe $3 billion Paulson payday; the Greenwich mansion with 26 toilets; the Larry Ellison yacht that was too big; or the $300,000 watch that doesn’t tell time– and that sold out. It was ever thus ( … ). Now, the wealthy are going underground. It isn’t just that they are losing some of their wealth–they can be forgiven for that. No, they are going quiet.  ( … ) What good is wealth if it remains tied up in gold bars in the private safe, protected against inflation as well as the aspiring/envious gaze of the American people? Wealth unseen is no wealth at all. As Mr. Queenan writes: “By owning hundreds of sports cars, by squandering enormous sums of cash on teams that play sports they know nothing about, the wealthy send a powerful message to the great unwashed that even if money cannot buy happiness, it can at least buy the Washington Redskins.” It is time to rethink the Biden Doctrine on Wealth. The real patriotic duty of the superrich isn’t to pay taxes: it is to throw $3 million birthday parties that provide jobs (and headlines) for the rest of us.