I like this explanation of the difference between the wealthy, the middle class, and the poor a lot:
"Entrepreneurship is like one of those carnival games where you throw darts or something.
Middle class kids can afford one throw. Most miss. A few hit the target and get a small prize. A very few hit the center bullseye and get a bigger prize. Rags to riches! The American Dream lives on.
Rich kids can afford many throws. If they want to, they can try over and over and over again until they hit something and feel good about themselves. Some keep going until they hit the center bullseye, then they give speeches or write blog posts about "meritocracy" and the salutary effects of hard work.
Poor kids aren't visiting the carnival. They're the ones working it."
I'd add to this metaphor the following:
Rich kids also have the additional advantage of enormous safety nets to protect them before and after they play the game. Private schools and tutors to insulate against failure before ever throwing a dart and family businesses and inherited wealth to fall back on if they decide to stop playing the game altogether.
The Trump family is a perfect example of this.
Donald Trump is not a self-made man but the beneficiary of his father's immense real estate fortune. Incidentally, Fred Trump's real estate career was marked by investigations by the U.S. Senate for wartime profiteering and the Department of Justice for violating the Fair Housing Act for refusing to rent to African American tenants.
Not exactly a fortune earned through hard work alone.
The Trump children are all third generation beneficiaries of that fortune as well. They all work in the family business and have benefited from the free capital of the Trump fortune when launching businesses of their own.
No matter how many entrepreneurial darts Trump and his children threw, they would never be without wealth. Their family business served as an enormous safety net to failure, misfortune, or incompetence.
Even Ivanka Trump's wealthy husband, Jared Kushner, is the product of an enormous family fortune. He, too, works for the family business.
None of these people are self-made, boot-strapping, rags-to-riches people. They take credit for their wealth at every turn but are merely the stewards of a fortune that was amassed a long time ago.
In fact, economists have demonstrated that had Donald Trump merely placed his father's fortune in an index fund and done nothing, he'd be more wealthy than he is today.
Fred Trump went to the carnival in the second half of the twentieth century to try his hand at throwing darts. He probably cheated while playing the game and scored big, and the Trump family has been the beneficiaries ever since.
Are we surprised that the tax cuts currently proposed by Republicans vastly favor the wealthy while increasing middle class taxes?
Are we surprised that Trump and his wealthy supporters are hell bent on eliminating the inheritance tax?
Trump doesn't want to throw darts. He doesn't want to take any entrepreneurial risk. He and his wealthy supporters don't want to go anywhere near the carnival. Those darts were thrown long ago. They simply want to benefit from the risk taking and fortune building of their predecessors.