Residents of a small Spanish village thought they might become millionaires overnight. There was a rumor the people of Cerezales del Condado would be the beneficiaries of Corona beer founder Antonino Fernández’s wealth after his passing. He left behind an estate valued at about $210 million, which the village thought they might get a cut of.
It’s uncertain where the money will be going. Communications Director for the Fundanción Cerezales Antonino y Cinia Lucía Alaejos told Buzzfeed news, “Antonino did a lot for the village where he was born and for the Foundation. But he did it during his life.”
Had money been given posthumously, it would have been quite a story of charitable giving to see the wealth of one man spread amongst the small town where he grew up—to the people below. The distributed wealth would have amounted to around $2 million per resident, and would have been a scene of trickle-down economics in-action—a rare, if ever witnessed, sight.
The philosophy behind trickle-down economics assumes investors and company owners are the drivers of economic growth. Give more breaks to the wealthy and the additional money will trickle-down in the form of increased wages, additional jobs, and so on. However, this doesn’t come to pass, because it depends on people to behave in a certain way. When it comes to wealth, the rich have a higher propensity to save and save more. So, this additional money meant to help take the stress off businesses and allow for more job creation or increase in the salaries of the middle class winds up going into a savings account.
There are many ideas floating around in how we create more jobs, increase wealth—make life better for everyone. Trickle-down might work, if the rich behaved they way economists wanted them to, but they don’t. Wealth is more likely to be hoarded than given away so freely. There is one method to increasing wealth and prosperity which may pass the human behavior test: basic income. It’s being tested very soon in Ontario, read more about that here.