It is likely that both Donald Trump and Paris Hilton would be unknown to the world and working average jobs like most of America if it wasn’t for their families’ enormous wealth. In his current campaign for the presidency, Donald Trump has touted his business expertise and his success as an entrepreneur to potential voters, but compared to other people who had a similar head start, Trump’s accomplishments are not very impressive at all. In fact, according to earning figures, Paris Hilton has actually been able to do far more with her family’s wealth than Trump has, and she has been able to do it with less money and in less time too.
It is important to point out that neither of these people are “self-made.” However, Trump inherited a substantially larger amount money than Hilton, has had way more time, and is barely ahead of her in earnings.
In the early 1980’s Trump inherited $200 million from his real estate tycoon father and in the past 30 years he has managed to grow his fortune to an estimated $4 billion.
Trump claimed in a recent press release that his net worth was $10 billion, but most estimates place his fortune somewhere around $4 billion. He also was accused of overestimating his wealth in 1982 when he said he was worth $500 million. Either way, this is certainly a ton of money.
Ironically enough, however, he would have made more money had he done absolutely nothing, and just let the money sit in a mutual fund to collect interest.
“Let’s give Trump the benefit of the doubt and assume he was worth $500 million in 1982. Imagine Trump had retired in 1982, sold his real estate holdings and invested his $500 million in the S&P 500 — that is, 500 stocks representing the American stock market. From 1982 through the end of 2014, the S&P 500 index had an annualized return, including reinvested dividends, of 11.86 percent, according to MoneyChimp’s S&P 500 Compound Annual Growth Rate calculator. Per this calculator, every dollar invested in January 1982 would have been worth $40 by December of 2014. That means Trump’s initial $500 million would have grown to $20 billion. That’s twice what Trump says he’s worth today.
On the other hand, Hilton’s inheritance was $5 million, which is 2.5% the size of Trump’s inheritance. At the age of 34, Hilton now sits atop a $2 billion dollar empire that is entirely separate from her family’s hotel business. At a very young age, Hilton began to invest in a wide variety of fragrances, which she now distributes globally to over 40 different countries. Hilton started out with way less than Trump, and at this rate, by the time she reaches his age, her fortune will likely far overshadow his. It seems that Hilton is truly a better entrepreneur than Trump is, and next year when she reaches the age of 35, she may be even more qualified to run for president than he is.
“My grandfather and great grandfather created such a huge empire. As a little girl, I really looked up to them and wanted to do something of my own. I could never have become a trust-fund kid and lived off a monthly allowance. As a teenager, I always said I wanted to make my own money so I never had to ask for anything,” Hilton said in an interview with Forbes.
“Even if I’m tired after a month of travel, I‘m going to get up and go because it’s not just about me. There are other people whose jobs depend on my getting to work. I think about the team in our Beverly Hills office, I think about the people we employ around the world. I love that I get to create employment opportunities for people all over the globe – that really motivates me,” she added.
Trump has made a reputation for himself as a business leader, but he has really spent more time gaming the system than being innovative and responding to the needs of his customers. Trump has declared bankruptcy on 4 separate occasions, a move that he claims is a smart business decision to offset costs of unsuccessful ventures. In fact, according to CNN, no major U.S. company has filed for Chapter 11 more than Trump’s casino empire in the last 30 years. Trump has also used eminent domain to force people from their homes so he could build his casinos. Even before Trump was a politician, he was more of a politician than he was a businessman.
Of course, no one here is advocating that Paris Hilton or Donald Trump be president. But when a candidate boasts his business background as a reason to be president, that business background certainly deserves scrutiny.
Trump’s history with money shows his reckless and risky path with detrimental blunders along the way. Couple this carelessness with his demagoguery and you have a recipe for disaster; not too mention that this maniac just proposed banning all Muslims from the United States.
With candidates like these, on both sides of the circus that is the two party system, who needs a terror threat?
John Vibes is an author and researcher who organizes a number of large events including the Free Your Mind Conference. He also has a publishing company where he offers a censorship free platform for both fiction and non-fiction writers. You can contact him and stay connected to his work at his Facebook page. You can purchase his books, or get your own book published at his website www.JohnVibes.com.