In the recent immigration debate, one of the clich?©s that was hardest to shake was the assumption that Mexico is a terribly poor country. In reality, it`s above the world average in per capita GDP
(measured in purchasing power parity terms).
Now comes words that Mexican telecom monopolist Carlos Slim
has blown past Warren Buffett and Bill Gates to capture the top spot on the World`s Richest Man chart, with $67.8 billion. Considering that most of Slim`s wealth comes from monopoly operations within Mexico, while Gates extracts money from around the world (the rest of the world`s economy is four times bigger than America`s), and the Mexican economy is only 1/11th
as big as America`s, then Slim piling up a nest egg equivalent to $3,000 per family of five in Mexico is quite a feat.
As the great traveler Alexander von Humboldt observed two centuries ago, â€?Mexico is the country of inequality. Perhaps nowhere in the world is there a more horrendous distribution of wealth, civilization, cultivation of land, and population.â€?