These 8 Men Are As Rich As 3.6-Billion People, Or Half The World

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Jan 16 2017
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Globalisation is in danger as people uprising against their orthodoxy of open markets and borders are sweeping the globe. Their hostility towards both trade and immigration without boundaries saw Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, as well as the unexpected presidential victory by super conservative Donald Trump.


In what appears to be a strange twist of event, China – long regarded as a communist country – could be the new leader promoting globalisation and capitalism. For the first time in 47 years, President Xi Jinping will become the first Chinese president to attend the World Economic Forum in the Swiss Alps when he gives a keynote speech on Tuesday.

World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland - China President Xi Jinping - China Daily Newspaper

As United Kingdom and United States adopt “isolationism”, the globalists are running around like a headless chicken looking for a new leader. Donald Trump will not be at Davos as he’s preparing to take office on Friday. As 3,000 delegates meet without the presence of a U.S. president, a Chinese president is expected to fill in the vacuum.


President Xi Jinping is taking China’s biggest delegation to the elite gathering in Davos. He will try to breathe in a new order of globalism and perhaps a new global economy. Mr. Xi will likely articulate China’s vision for the world economic and political order. But the rhetoric of a new globalism has to convincingly tackle the problem of widening gap between the richest and the poorest.

Chinese President Xi Jinping - Sitting on Chair

In a latest analysis done by Oxfam, an anti-poverty organization, a disturbing result shows that the gap between the super-rich and the poorest is far greater and more serious than previously thought. Eight of the world’s richest men own as much wealth as 3.6-billion people – that’s about half the people on planet Earth.


A year earlier, the same report by Oxfam said that the richest 62 people on the planet owned as much wealth as the bottom half of the population. Back then, the report said only 0.7% of the world’s population controlled 45.6%, or US$116.6 trillion, of the money in the world. Some 3.5 billion people had a net worth of less than US$10,000, accounting for just about US$6.1 trillion in household wealth.

Forbes World Eight Richest Men 2016 - Equals Half The World Wealth

So, it wasn’t 62 richest people who owned as much money as half the world’s population but merely the 8 super rich men. Using Forbes’ billionaires list that was last published in March 2016 to make its claim, Oxfam said these 8 individuals included Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Amancio Ortega – Spanish founder of fashion house Inditex, and legendary investor Warren Buffett.


Others included Mexican business magnate Carlos Slim Helu, Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg, Oracle’s Larry Ellison and Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York. The analysis was backed by new information gathered by Swiss bank Credit Suisse. Therefore, Oxfam is urging world leaders to do more than pay lip-service to the problem.


“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 US$2 a day,” – said Winnie Byanyima, executive director of Oxfam International, who will be attending the meeting in Davos. “Inequality is trapping hundreds of millions in poverty; it is fracturing our societies and undermining democracy.”


Oxfam warns that public anger against this kind of inequality will continue to grow and lead to more seismic political changes like last year’s election of Donald Trump as U.S. president and Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. Indirectly, the research shows that globalists and capitalists were to blame for Brexit in UK and Trump’s stunning presidency win, not racism or populism.


How to reduce the inequality? Suggestions include higher taxes on wealth and income to ensure a more level playing field and to fund investments in public services and jobs, greater cooperation among governments on ensuring workers are paid decently and the rich don’t dodge their taxes. And business leaders should commit to paying their fair share of taxes and a living wage to employees.


However, it’s easier said than done as last year’s “Panama Papers” leak had shown almost every single millionaire and billionaire – from King Salman to Lionel Messi – would rather hide their wealth than pay their taxes. Max Lawson, Oxfam’s policy adviser, said – “We have a situation where billionaires are paying less tax often than their cleaner or their secretary. That’s crazy.”

Relaxing High Five at Tax Haven Countries

In another study done by Edelman, one of the world’s biggest marketing firms, a survey of more than 33,000 people across 28 markets found the largest-ever drop in trust across government, business, media and even non-governmental organizations. The survey found CEO credibility was at an all-time low and government leaders were the least trusted group.


Its president and CEO, Richard Edelman, said – “It began with the Great Recession of 2008, but like the second and third waves of a tsunami, globalization and technological change have further weakened people’s trust in global institutions. The consequence is virulent populism and nationalism as the mass population has taken control away from the elites.”

Recession - People Asking For Jobs

Edelman’s 2017 Trust Barometer found that 53% of respondents believe the current system has failed them in that it is unfair and offers few hopes for the future, with only 15% believing it is working. Unsurprisingly, the survey also found search engines are trusted more (51%) as an information tool than traditional news media (41%).


Hence, the lack of trust in mainstream news media could be the primary reason why American voters, especially the working class and middle class, had voted for Donald Trump. Against big guns like CNN and Washington Post who happened to publish various fake news; Trump had literally tweeted his way to the White House.


More importantly, the latest report by Oxfam proves that not only President Barack Obama’s policies didn’t help the poor and middle class, the rich have actually benefited very much under his 8-year administration. If capitalism was bad in increasing the gap between the rich and poor, globalism and liberalism make it worse by making the rich insanely richer.


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