Anand Giridharadas @AnandWrites @TIME editor at large. Author of @WinnersTakeAll, THE TRUE AMERICAN, & INDIA CALLING. MSNBC political analyst. @PriyaParker's man. Father. Rhymes with "almond." Jan. 21, 2019 1 min read

Stunning new data:

The world’s 2,200 billionaires grew 12 percent wealthier in 2018. Meanwhile, the bottom half of the world got 11 percent poorer.

Don’t be Pinkered into everything’s-getting-better complacency.

The few are monopolizing progress. 

And make no mistake. Many of those gathering in #Davos are the cornerstones of the class, and the system, that made it this way.

Arsonists at a firefighting meeting.

“between 1980 and 2016 the poorest 50% of humanity only captured 12 cents in every dollar of global income growth. By contrast, the top 1% captured 27 cents of every dollar.”

The same 1 percent large swaths of which identify as philanthropists.

If #WEF19 wants to save itself and its members from the ire that‘s rising, it should this week produce a report on raising a wealth tax and cracking down on tax havens and other avoidance, and use the report to urge governments to act and its elite members to stay out of the way.

In short, the tremendous gains that government action, markets, aid, labor unions, philanthropy and other things have made in improving the human condition are now imperiled by the wealth concentration those improvements have left unbothered.

The last many years have been defined by an unspoken bargain:

As long as the world’s poor were getting richer, we weren’t supposed to ask what the rich were up to.

What they were up to was hoarding progress. Those 2,200 billionaires are a shrine to our failure to act.

You can follow @AnandWrites.


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