I saw the trailer for a movie Elysium, and it reminded me of a book I read as a kid.
It was about how Earth was poor but had a giant population, and the space stations were rich and had better technologies, but low population due to dimensional constraints. Then some guys on Earth try to develop an advanced ship and somebody remarks how even though an average Earth citizen is poor, there is a billion of them and if you take 1 dollar from each you now have a billion dollars at your disposal.
I tried various google searches but to no avail. Perhaps it was an Asimov short story? I looked through his works but none seem to match.