Gene Simmons: 'Try Being Nice to Rich People'

"A poor person never gave me a job," says KISS bassist.

Gene Simmons: 'Try Being Nice to Rich People'
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In a new interview with the San Diego Union Tribune (via Blabbermouth), KISS's Gene Simmons has stated that he is proud to be in the top one percent of American wealth and that he believes the one per cent is necessary for the American economy:

"I have been part of the [top] one percent [of Americans in terms of wealth] for the past 30 years, [and] it's fantastic!" he said. "The one percent pays 80 percent of all taxes. Fifty percent of the population of the US pays no taxes. The one percent provides all the jobs for everybody else. If the one percent didn't exist, there would be chaos and the American economy would drop dead."

"Try being nice to rich people. I don't remember the last poor person who gave me a job."

He also responded to claims that he shamelessly flaunted his wealth:

"You know how I spell shameless? P-r-o-u-d.

"People often confuse, at least in my estimation, my pride and self-confidence with arrogance. Because they are not used to people who have an in-your-face, 'take it or leave it/this is how I am' point of view. I'm more like an animal in the jungle that [urinates] on the ground and doesn't ask your permission. 'This is me, this is my territory.' It's simply defining who I am and what I stand for.

"That's called full disclosure, before the facts. Others simply hold their opinions to themselves and never say who they are you. You will always know who I am. You don't have to like it; that's OK if you don't."

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    Izzy-Sweet
    A poor person never gave you a job? Really, Gene? Next time you stand on stage, I'd recommend you take a look at the thousands in your audience and try to remember who put you there in the first place, who's given you the chance to still do what you do today.
    Abacus11
    Very well said. If it weren't for "poor people" Gene Simmons wouldn't be wealthy playing music and he would have had to get a job and work like everybody else. This guy is so out of touch with reality it's ridiculous. Greedy, condescending garbage.
    ranbat
    This is exactly right. If there was noone buying the product, he wouldn't have his wealth. The rich do not provide jobs, the consumer does.
    AlexRibeiro333
    And that thing of a poor person never giving him a job, that's a weak argument at most. Try to find a poor person who holds the production means. At most you'll find small companies.
    rockerwannabe
    Hey dumbass, they didn't give him a job. Gene is a douche by any means but he's bang on in this interview. Poor people have never created a job. It's economically impossible.
    s7peterson
    when you think about it, the working class are the ones who buy the merchandise, buy the cd's etc..so I reject your argument as the premises are untrue in this case, rendering said argument invalid
    Izzy-Sweet
    Really? You mean to tell me that if the fans (working class, or in Gene's words, "poor people") DID NOT buy the albums, DID NOT buy the merchandise, DID NOT buy tickets for the live shows, Gene would still be employed in the music industry? Didn't think so. It is the consumers that give jobs a reason to exist in the first place.
    JelloCrust
    "The one percent pays 80 percent of all taxes. . ." yet they have 99% of the wealth. . . sounds like things aren't quite working out to be equal here.
    matteo cubano
    "People often confuse, at least in my estimation, my pride and self-confidence with arrogance. " If I may call attention to the "more Gene Simmons news section" 07/05/12: Gene Simmons: "I've been arrogant and selfish all my life." The defense rests.
    Smashton28
    You're still a douche
    metallideth88
    Why does poverty even exist? Maybe the poor don't have enough creativity, idea or simply don't want to get out of the situation. Think about it
    Lord_Doku
    Don't have enough = strangers judgement. Rich stranger = never enough. Thought's been had.
    estabon37
    I really don't understand how you can come to the conclusion that creativity is rewarded monetarily on a music website . Look at the charts. Look up the top earning musicians of the last few years. The trends tell us that simplistic music brings home the bacon, and that the genuinely creative musicians who make money had to push their ideas and music for decades to get people on board. Hell, even the people started out by releasing shitty, simplistic pop tunes based around 12 bar chords, and then used the wealth it gave them to attempt creative music. Alfie Kohn released a book years ago called 'Punished By Rewards'. It makes a strong case that any kind of incentive - including financial - kills creative thought. Poverty exists because our social, economic, and political systems perpetuate it. Those of us who are fortunate enough not to be dirt poor prefer to think of ourselves as worthy of our success, so we tend to blindly refer to the poor as 'lazy' or 'uncreative' because the only alternative is to accept the awful truth and work towards fixing it.
    estabon37
    Well, I ****ed that up. Where I wrote 'Hell, even the people...' in the first paragraph, it should read 'Hell, even The Beatles...'. My kingdom for an edit button!
    Jazz1992
    Thought about it. Dismissed it as brainless bullsh*t very soon afterwards.
    bradd101
    He may be right about the one percent being necessary, but the problem is the fact that the one percent are now so disproportianately rich that everyone else starts to become poorer, which means you run the risk of losing the middle class completely and creating a HUGE problematic gap between the working class and the upper class. There needs to be a one percent yes, but it needs to be more proportianately sound so you don't risk f*cking the majority
    Abacus11
    Without a strong middle class the rich have fewer and fewer customers buying their goods and services and the economy collapses. History has shown time and time again that a healthy middle class is ESSENTIAL to a nation's economy. Without them (us) all you have is a small wealthy population buying and selling to each other while the vast majority of the population is too busy trying to put food on the table and keep the lights on to spend money on anything else.
    TheWhiteKeys101
    The more you get rich, the more you want to get rich. "The rich get richer and the poor get poorer".
    Jmoarguitar
    Absolutely. As the top tier continue to gain wealth exponentially the middle class falls into the bottom tier. And as we know, trickle-down economics does NOT work
    kratos379
    Actually it's not that trickle down economics doesn't work, it's more that employees are a big expense and that with modern technology, humans can be replaced by machines and much more cheaply. Since the costs are cut, products can be sold to consumers more cheaply. Getting decent paying jobs back in western countries for the middle class is going to be a challenge, but raising taxes won't cure that.
    BobbyHill666
    "I don't remember the last poor person who gave me a job" Except for the teenagers and young adults who saved up to buy your shitty music, tasteless merchandise, and concert tickets. Drop dead or get cancer.
    Bollockser
    In my experience rich people are rich because they are greedy and cheap and stingy.
    rockerwannabe
    Are you so narrow minded that only rich people have those traits? Don't you think the guy on the street with less money wants more? I know plenty of poor people that are stingy and plenty of rich people that are most generous. STFU.
    blackdiamond74
    I cant stand this guy, hes an arrogant piece of shit who simply destroyed his legacy a long time ago. He just embarrasses true Kiss fans like myself.
    MaidenisGOD89
    I'm nice to rich people...who aren't arrogant pieces of trash. Gene, you're just a freakin tool!
    Baby Joel
    How about be nice to everyone? It shouldn't matter how much they make, or what job they have, or what they contribute to society. Just be nice to everyone.
    Jehuty
    Try being nice to rich people? How about, try being nice towards everyone, without differentiating between their financial position.
    GenerationKILL
    "A poor person never gave me a job." No, but they're the ones who landscape your property, serve you your food, spend what little money they have on your merchandise, wash your cars, dry-clean your suits and even build your houses." Maybe rich people should try being a little nicer to the other 99% instead of exploiting them.
    rockstarbear
    Gene forgets about that whole 1979-1996 period when he wasn't in the top 1% anymore.
    rockerwannabe
    That's a misnomer. KISS the company wasn't wealthy but Paul and Gene the individuals were never hurting for money. Never.
    JOHNSTONE6
    I doubt this dude is the one percent. Last time I checked, they were selling circus-like hotdog and a show tickets for like $20 to see KISS...I'm sorry but I just don't buy it...Plus KISS is just trash IMO so boring
    jsome4203
    The 1% doesn't pay 80% percent of all taxes, they pay people to find loopholes and end up paying 0% of all taxes. Society and the masses put you were you are, no one achieves anything alone
    jerebear1
    exactly i mean do jay-z and all the heavy democratic party supporters pay taxes? not as much as they should
    Sebo
    If you pay your taxes I have no problem with you being rich.
    jerrybronham
    This man is delusional and has turned his backs on the people he, at this point, tricked into helping him make rich and famous. This is why we have such a class disparity in the United States when you have these rich folks talking down on the middle and lower class like they're all lazy vermin who contribute nothing to society even though, you know, we help drive the economy.