Wednesday, June 17, 2020

The Final Solution: Net Worth

Can you judge the net worth of an individual by how much money is in their bank account? It’s almost juvenile to aver that people ascribe to higher values that are more telling barometers than the cash, stocks or bonds they have accumulated. For instance, Warren Buffet, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Jack Ma (the owner of Alibaba) are often at the top of the list, when you’re considering the richest. Elon Musk of Tesla fame, Virgin founder Richard Branson inhabit a lower rung the food chain. And Donald Trump is often cited as having dubious solvency. His real estate and hotels must be taking a real hit due to the pandemic. But how to define worth? In alchemy the object is to turn base metal into gold. Then there's the question of immortality. Faust sold his soul for a bite of that precarious apple  that resulted in the Adamic fall. The glimmerings of the Boson, the ultimate element of matter, as seen in barely perceptible scratch marks produced in the Large Hadron Collider might be said to a piece of information of incalculable value, as would be discovery of cold fusion. Imagine liberating untold stores of energy with no greenhouse effect? How would society ever be able to be aware of such a discovery and would the pay check be close to that earned by the inventor of a coronavirus vaccine or even a vaccination against the common cold?

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