Home » Uncategorized » Global super-rich no longer look so benign Chrystia Freeland FT

Global super-rich no longer look so benign Chrystia Freeland FT

The title says it all. This article by the managing editor of the US Financial Times raises an issue that appeared with increasing frequency in various guises in the financial press as 2009 wended to its end. The general question being asked is what does one do abouit the growing gulf between the super-rich and the rest of humanity. Many have asked how one reconciles the immense bonuses that bankers are paying themselves with the stubbornly high unemployment rate. Others ask, as does this article, how the benefits of globalization might be better distributed. Part of the dilemma is that few of the super-rich appear to see the problem. The super-rich appear to have become totally tone-deaf and apparently quite indifferent to the wreckage that they have created. Part of the reason for the indifference stems, no doubt, from their apparent belief that the wreckage had nothing to do with them. This also appears to be true of business schools in universities. I have yet to hear any prominent academic apologize for being part of the financial disaster that befell the markets in 2008. Again, it seems to derive from a belief that none of what transpired had anything to do with what was taught. And, if they are not part of the problem, then there is no need to be part of the solution. If there is no problem, then there is no need for a solution. Freeland quotes Jim Manzi in his concern that “if we let inequality and its underlying causes grow unchecked, we will hollow out the middle class – threatening social cohesion and eventually surrendering our international position”. So how will the super-rich answer Freeland question as to whether they will become more “benign” and help “to bring the American dream [back] with reach of nearly everyone?”

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