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Oligarchy On The Rise

Source: Oxfam http://bit.ly/2izQaXO

Did you know that according to Forbes, in 2016 Donald J. Trump ranked only #336 among the world’s richest people – how embarrassing that must be for him. Maybe his Presidency will change that? Or will he end up on Forbes list of the Meet the Biggest Losers in the World?

The extremes of wealth and poverty in the world was highlighted this past week by Oxfam’s report that Just 8 Men Own the Same Wealth as Half the World – the same wealth as the 3.6 billion people who make up the poorest half of humanity!

“Oxfam’s report, ‘An economy for the 99 percent’, shows that the gap between rich and poor is far greater than had been feared. It details how big business and the super-rich are fuelling the inequality crisis by dodging taxes, driving down wages and using their power to influence politics. It calls for a fundamental change in the way we manage our economies so that they work for all people, and not just a fortunate few.”

Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International, said: “It is obscene for so much wealth to be held in the hands of so few when 1 in 10 people survive on less than $2 a day.  Inequality is trapping hundreds of millions in poverty; it is fracturing our societies and undermining democracy.”

Back in 2014 BBC News published Study: US is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy. Simply put: “The wealthy few move policy, while the average American has little power.” The study conducted by Princeton and Northwestern University professors concluded: “we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organisations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America’s claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened.”

Felix Salmon recently wrote in Fusion: “By nominating a series of oligarchs to his cabinet, Trump is betraying the grassroots movement that elected him. Given their druthers, those oligarchs will start slashing taxes, starting with the corporate income tax and the inheritance tax, and might well take aim at much government expenditure, to boot. Their policies will be deeply and rightly opposed by liberals and by anybody who considers rising inequality to be a problem. Once they get enacted, those policies will hurt many of the people who voted for Trump in the first place.”

Isn’t it a supreme irony that many of the forgotten, working-poor, supporters of Donald J. Trump who bought into the promise that he will bring back their jobs and restore their dignity and declining position in the global economy will be ruled by an oligarchy on the rise?

 

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