People around the world have been going on about the wealth division between billionaires and the rest of the world and how much more they can do if only they chose to spend that money on social causes. The most recent interaction has taken place between the UN’s Director of World Food Programme and Tesla CEO. Elon Musk wants to know how exactly $6 billion could help solve world hunger.
In the Connect the World interview with Becky Anderson at CNN, David Beasley talked about the program run by the UN and how it could use help from the wealthiest of the world. He talked about how many countries are currently “knocking on famine’s door,” because of the multiple common crises going on in the world. He specifically mentioned Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, two of the richest men of the world, saying, “Billionaires need to step up now, on a one-time basis”.
Just 2% of Elon Musk’s fortune would come to $6 billion in numbers, as he recently became the richest man when his net worth came to 292.6 billion USD. It surpassed the company’s long time rival in the top US companies list, ExxonMobil (XOM) for the first time, which is $272 billion in market value.
Musk however, does not seem to understand how giving the WFP $6 billion would solve world hunger as he reiterated in a twitter post. “If WFP can describe on this Twitter thread exactly how $6B will solve world hunger, I will sell Tesla stock right now and do it.” he wrote, in a reply to Eli David, who attached a screenshot of the interview with Beasley’s statement.
Adding, “But it must be open source accounting, so the public sees precisely how the money is spent.”
The original tweet by Eli David, to which Elon Musk responded said, “Fact check:
-2% of @elonmusk’s wealth is $6B
-In 2020 the UN World Food Program (WFP) raised $8.4B. How come it didn’t “solve world hunger”?”
The above stats stand to be true, but there are not clear answers as to how that fundraising is different from the money the WFP requires now. People have mixed feelings about expecting this of a few wealthy people, from some believing it to be justified while others think it foolish to depend on a few single entities to solve collective social issues.