If we use a net worth of $56T (2011) then 38% = $21.3T and 88% = $49.3T.
Wealth is not zero-sum. In 2007 American wealth was over $65T and the control percentages were 1-2 percentage points lower. So while the overall net worth dropped 16% the top “20%” lost only -3% of their share of the pie (going from 85% to 88%). I wonder where the rest of the loss came from?
Wealth is not zero-sum. But the pie is. It sums up to 100% whether the net worth is worth $65T or $56T. If the top “1%” keeps a lock on $20T and the net worth figures keep falling, their percentage of the pie keeps going up. and the “99%” keeps getting squeezed as their percentage goes down.
It isn’t a matter of declaring wealth is evil or that reward for success is bad. It is a matter of saying that using wealth to promote a playing field that favors your increasing your wealth is bad. Buying the influence to set the field in your favor is bad. Gaming the system with a disregard for intent is bad. (Fraud is fraud, unless you can do enough semantic acrobatics to rob everyone blind, legally.
I don’t disparage the 20% their wealth. No matter how you cut the pie, there will always be a 20%. But 88% of the wealth seems a bit much for 20% of the population.