Sunday, March 06, 2016

World Stability in Jeopardy


The World
is in 
  Not climate change, war, terrorists or asteroid strikes
Imbalance and Greed are the threats

I am re-publishing this post because I am really concerned about the possible consequences of a dangerous imbalance in the world.
One of my recurring  nightmares is that the world was returning to Medieval Feudalism with all the horrors, disease, and ignorance associated with that time returning.

A time when all the power and almost all the wealth was in the control of a handful of emperors, kings, and war-lords, and church leaders.  A time of plagues, a time of migrations, a time of famines, a time of wars and uprisings. It's happening again now, a return to a form of Medieval Feudalism - just substitute the super rich, the mega businesses, the financial manipulators, the big stock market players, for Emperors, Kings, and War-Lords.

Here is what I wrote then:

Oxfam have just released 
a New Report  
62 of the richest people - just a Bus full
Own as much as 3,600,000,000 of the poorest
1% of people own 99% of everything
The Disaster is happening

Mahatma Gandhi
"Poverty is the worst form of violence"
Mahatma Gandhi

If Mother Nature went seriously awry and some few squirrels were able to take and hide away some tens of thousands of times their normal share of nuts, what do you think might be the outcome?

Thankfully this is not happening in the woods and forests of the world, but it is happening in the human world.  The latest reports clearly show that the rich are getting very much richer 44% in 5 years, while the rest of society is getting poorer. What do you think might be the outcome?

Those who take and hide away more than their fair share, are depriving others. Those who take vastly more than their fair share are committing violence against the greater part of the peoples of earth.

My fear is that the deprived, the starving, the under-privileged will rise up and chaos will ensure.

Frederick Douglass

"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced ... 
neither persons nor property will be safe"
Frederick Douglass

The Oxfam Report outlines the GROWING Imbalance.

 Growing inequality means that the world's wealthiest 62 people, as many people as would fit on a tour bus, own as much as the poorest half of the entire world population - some 3.6 billion people - according to a new report from Oxfam.

Don't you think the shape of the graph of growing inequality is remarkably like a missile?

It amazes me just how symmetrical both sides of the above graph actually are. It worries and sickens me that the richest 1% of people - which is around 73 million of the world's 7.3 billion people - now own as much as everyone else put together. That is 1% of people own 99% of everything. Too much water behind a dam - and the dam will burst.

This is in a report published ahead of the annual World Economic Forum of global political and business leaders in Swiss ski resort of Davos.

The latest Oxfam report indicates that world-wide imbalance, unfairness, and inequality has reached levels not seen in over 100 years..

Oxfam has calculated that the richest 62 individuals had the same wealth as 3.5 billion people, or the bottom half of humanity.

The wealth of those 62 people has risen 44 percent, or more than half a trillion dollars, over the past five years, while the wealth of the bottom half has fallen by over a trillion.

The Toxic Trend

The saying that "a rising tide lifts all boats" could not be further from the truth in this case.  Wealth is being sucked upward at an alarming rate, leaving a massive vacuum at the lower end. Of the generation of wealth in our present day world the Oxfam report says the following:  "Far from trickling down, income and wealth are instead being sucked upwards at an alarming rate".

It points to a "global spider's web" of tax havens that ensures wealth stays out of reach of ordinary citizens and governments, a recent estimate puts the figure at $7.6 trillion in private individual wealth held in offshore accounts. The figure is greater than the combined economies of the United Kingdom and Germany.

Some Other Commentators on the Dangers of Inequality

Jyrki Raina, general secretary of IndustriALL Global Union, which represents 50 million workers in 140 countries in the mining,energy and manufacturing sectors. "Inequality is one of the biggest threats to economic well-being and it needs to be addressed."

Edelman's annual published it's "Trust Barometer" which shows that in 2015 there was a record gap in trust between the informed publics and mass populations. This exists in many countries, and is driven by income inequality and divergent expectations of the future. The gap is the largest in the United States, followed by the UK, France and India.

In the last year, trust has declined for three of the four institutions measured. NGOs continue to be the most trusted institution, but trust in NGOs declined from 66 to 63 percent. In 66% of countries surveyed there is not trust in the media. Governments are not trusted in 19 of 27 markets surveyed.
And trust in business is below 50 percent in half of those markets.

In December of 2014 the New York City's police commissioner has reminded us of the roots of crime, and recent acts of civil unrest."This is about the continuing poverty rates, the continuing growing disparity between the wealthy and the poor. It's still about unemployment issues"

I'm depressed and worried.