Collectively, the Forbes 400 have $1.57 trillion in wealth. It's hard to get your mind around a number like that. So let's imagine that it was available for the public good. What does $1.57 trillion buy?
Sometimes you can't declare victory until the other side concedes defeat. That's what happened Monday in the decade-long struggle over the future of the estate tax, our nation's only levy on inherited wealth.
This shift in wealth in America since the 1970s created an unholy cycle of more lobbying for more benefits for the super-rich and large corporations, who in turn paid for even more lobbying -- a cycle that still is in full motion.