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Imagine the sheer enormity of a $30 billion empire. Chances are, you can't. But that's what Pablo Escobar, the infamous Colombian drug lord, was reportedly worth at the peak of his powerful reign. RealLifeLore, a YouTube channel dedicated to visual breakdowns of cool things like history and science, has teamed up with Court of Source in an effort to show just how powerful Pablo's cocaine industry really was.
"30 billion dollars is a very difficult number to get one's head around," the clip's narrator explains. Pablo, estimated as the 7th richest person in the world by Forbes back in 1989, would rank 18th on that list today if he were alive and still raking in the same profits. That's crazy but, um, it still begs the question: how?!? Well, Pablo's team was smuggling a remarkable 15 tons of coke into the United States every day at their peak. To break that down even further, that's roughly 2 African elephants' worth of cocaine every damn day.
To put Pablo's wealth in fan-friendly terms, ponder this. The average yearly household income, according to RealLifeLore's research, is $51,939. To match what Pablo's cartel made in a single day, the average household would have to work for a whopping 1,155 years. Just to be clear, humans don't generally live that long.
Though it will offer players roughly a zero percent chance of amassing their own $30 billion empire, inquiring minds can (kinda) run their own drug cartel thanks to the forthcoming Narcos: Cartel Wars mobile game. "Narcos is about a lot more than violence, money, and power," Aaron Berndtson, FTX Games' head of business development, told Variety when announcing the game, due to be released alongside Narcos' second season in September. "We really wanted to explore the moral ambiguity from the show, where right and wrong are subjective. We're very excited to put these choices into the player's hands."
Three cheers for moral ambiguity!