Next time you cry over your paycheck or you scrimp and scrape to find the extra few dollars to finish the month, remember that admittedly money doesn’t grow on trees…but it also serves no purpose when we slave away for someone else to strike it rich. Oxfam, the UK-headquartered charity, has just published a new report today and it shows that the world’s richest 85 people have the same quantity of wealth as 50% of the world’s population. Yes, there is a handful in this world that we have created that notch up more billions than half of the planet put together. Can it really be acceptable for the world to be working for so few?
Working for the Few was published Monday 20th January and its aim was to highlight the growing inequality in the world between the rich and the poor. The haves don’t just have, they have it all, it might seem and 3.5 billion people in the world are slaving away to keep them (more than) afloat.
• There are 210 people that have been made billionaires within the last year somewhere on this planet.
• Those people now belong to the few (only 1, 426 individuals) that have a net worth together of $5.4 trillion.
• So, today the richest 1% on the planet has a combined net value of $110 trillion today.
• That means that the top 1% have 65 times the total wealth of the poorest half of the world today.
The report mentions that “This massive concentration of economic resources in the hands of fewer people presents a significant threat to inclusive political and economic systems.”
The report has been published just in time for the World Economic Forum that will be taking place in Davos, Greece between January 22nd and 25th. There will be over 2, 500 participants, 100 countries and 1, 500 economic leaders and 40 heads of state. The subjects that are high up on the agenda will be:
• happiness and how to improve it (although if the WEF knew the answer to that question, everybody would be splitting their sides with laughter)
• research and knowledge
• health, emerging economies
• the place of women in society and
Four days of heavy discussion. Let’s wonder exactly what the outcome will be.
Probably everyone will unanimously agree on the fact that happiness is a state of mind that is unattainable right now (just as long as the economies are nose-diving, as usual); it’s a concept that they sold to the world, but we didn’t have enough money to buy. Research and knowledge are also wonderful ideas in theory. We see people spending their entire lives searching and yet finding little. Health would be great if we could actually afford it. Even your health is up for grabs by the financiers these days. The place of women in society is currently pretty much at the bottom somewhere after the other hoards of slaves and drudges that have been employed historically and at the present time. We shall hear endless cases of how we need to provide women with equality and yet they will do nothing except vociferate and pontificate about why, where and how. Then Syria will be told it’s been a naughty boy and Al-Assad shall get his knee-caps spanked should he continue doing the dirty on his population. Then, he will stand for elections (because the people want him to?) and will be re-elected in true Supreme Soviet fashion.
The discussion on women is centered around the fact that ‘behind every woman there is a man’, which supposedly despite the obvious ambiguity, means that for every woman that gets into the board room and that manages to climb the executive ladder, there is a man that enters a profession of ‘caring for other people’. That’s, according to the WEF, what we should be doing turning men into care-givers and equally things out that way.
The WEF states “Profound political, economic, social and, above all, technological forces are transforming our lives, communities and institutions. Rapidly crossing geographic, gender and generational boundaries, they are shifting power from traditional hierarchies to networked heterarchies. Yet the international community remains focused on crisis rather than strategically driven in the face of the trends, drivers and opportunities pushing global, regional and industry transformation.”
Too focused on the crisis? Transformation?
The largest group of people that will be attending the Davos meeting are government officials (288 participants). They are followed by the banking and capital markets sector (230 representatives). Then, there are 225 media representatives.
In other worlds, are these the people that care about the world enough to improve it’s state and to make out happiness their goal?
Originally posted: Working for the Few
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