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Oxfam on world wealth inequality

Written By: - Date published: 8:38 am, January 17th, 2017 - 94 comments
Categories: capitalism, class war, Globalisation, poverty - Tags: , , ,

Yesterday we posted on Oxfam’s report on wealth inequaliy in NZ, “The country’s two wealthiest people own the same amount as the poorest 30 percent in New Zealand”. Later that day the Oxfam report on the world situation was released:

World’s eight richest people have same wealth as poorest 50%

A new report by Oxfam warns of the growing and dangerous concentration of wealth

The world’s eight richest billionaires control the same wealth between them as the poorest half of the globe’s population, according to a charity warning of an ever-increasing and dangerous concentration of wealth.

In a report published to coincide with the start of the week-long World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Oxfam said it was “beyond grotesque” that a handful of rich men headed by the Microsoft founder Bill Gates are worth $426bn (£350bn), equivalent to the wealth of 3.6 billion people.

The development charity called for a new economic model to reverse an inequality trend that it said helped to explain Brexit and Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election.

Oxfam blamed rising inequality on aggressive wage restraint, tax dodging and the squeezing of producers by companies, adding that businesses were too focused on delivering ever-higher returns to wealthy owners and top executives.

The World Economic Forum (WEF) said last week that rising inequality and social polarisation posed two of the biggest risks to the global economy in 2017 and could result in the rolling back of globalisation. …

Read on in The Guardian for plenty more.


94 comments on “Oxfam on world wealth inequality”

  1. Paul 1

    An article describing how our own oligarchs made their money.
    They’re so similar to the Russian breed of greed.
    They should be tried for treason and sent to prison.
    As should the governments of the 1980s and 1990s than enabled them.

    Telecom jackpot: How privatisation made fortunes

    For Alan Gibbs and friends, the 1990 Telecom privatisation was the deal of a lifetime.

    Gibbs is so enamoured of Austrian neoliberal economist Friedrich Hayek that he has HAYEK as his personalised number plate.

    “And there it was: the greatest coup of my business career, the chance to make serious money,” crows Alan Gibbs as he pulls off the sale of the century, taking state-owned enterprise Telecom off the government’s hands in 1990. Three years later he and business partner Trevor Farmer get their big payday when they stump up about $200 million for 112 million Telecom shares. They immediately sell 67.5 million shares for $256 million, making a cool $56 million profit. Plus, having bought at $1.81 and sold at $3.80 per share, the balance of their shares is worth about $170 million. An asset sale deal close to heaven.

    It’s all gleefully recounted in Serious Fun: The Life and Times of Alan Gibbs, in which author Paul Goldsmith casts Gibbs as the deal broker extraordinaire. Gibbs celebrates the $4.25 billion sale of Telecom to a consortium made up of US companies Bell Atlantic and Ameritech, merchant bankers Michael Fay and David Richwhite, plus Gibbs and Farmer, by taking his new boat, Laissez Faire, on its maiden voyage circumnavigating New Zealand.

    • KJT 1.1

      Note; Most of them went to live overseas, when a couple of Australian millionaires were arrested for doing much the same thing.

      “Insider trading” is illegal in most first world countries.

      • Draco T Bastard 1.1.1

        It’s illegal here as well but we don’t seem to prosecute for it when it’s rich people who obviously stole from the nation.

    • Tamati Tautuhi 1.2

      The Gibbs and Holyoake families did particulary well out of the purchase and subdivision of Maori Land at Kinloch on the shores of Lake Taupo, there was some controversy over the sale of the land which was subject to a TOW Claim I believe, Sir Keith Holyoake supposedly organised the roading into the area?

      The sale of State Assets under Roger Douglas was highly suspect activity however NZ has a history of this going back to before the TOW which continues on to this day.

      • Paul 1.2.1

        But beneath the libertarian propaganda there is a more honest appraisal of recent history – how Gibbs’ time at Forestry Corporation gave him an insider’s view of state-owned enterprises, of how to unlock their hidden value and realise the super profits that “only occurred at times of discontinuity.”

        Gibbs spotted his opportunity early in 1990 when he did his hallmark one-page analysis of what Telecom might be worth. “It was a lovely, fat company, with huge margins and a lazy balance sheet. It was obvious if you could keep the margins it would be a fantastic business.” Like an alpha predator, he went for the throat.

        http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=10824121

        • Tamati Tautuhi 1.2.1.1

          The Neoliberal Agenda prescribed by the IMF was a deliberate move to pass State Assets which were Cash Cows for the State into the hands of the oligarchs that control the world’s business, the likes of Fay Richwhite, Alan Gibbs etc were the local conduits who were working with the offshore investment companies.

          We the NZ Taxpayers were sucker punched however we were sold the story by politicans both Labour & National and MSM that is was good for the country, Winston Peters NZF is the only politican in this country who has never deviated from his opposition to the sale of State Assets. These State Assets had been built up over the past 150 years by hard earned taxpayers money.

          • Gosman 1.2.1.1.1

            State assets shouldn’t be cash cows. That suggests they are making money from monopoly positions and therefore consumers are being rorted.

            • Molly 1.2.1.1.1.1

              “That suggests they are making money from monopoly positions and therefore consumers are being rorted.”

              or, perhaps that fundamental services are being provided as universally as possible, while continuing necessary maintenance and upgrades?

              • Gosman

                Telecom was a commercial enterprise. If it was making so much money someone like Alan Gibbs saw it as a cash cow then it was likely rorting the consumers. Ideally commercial enterprises should be earning a good return but super profits with no competition means the consumer is being taken for a ride.

                • tricledrown

                  when telecom was privatised they did everything possible to stop competiers used its privatised monopoly to print massive profits gouging customers National facilitated this rort.
                  they avoided tax by setting up several loss making aussie subsideries
                  lost nearly $4billion in the process.
                  now rebranded under spark telecom has struggled to make a profit under competition.
                  goooseman dogmatic trolling again.

            • Foreign waka 1.2.1.1.1.2

              No, state assets are taxpayer investments that ought to generate a return to re invest. This can be start ups, infrastructure, IT and telecommunication, earthquake contingency. Take your pick. I haven’t even mentioned any social investment.
              To sell something that was kept in trust and paid for by all people is strictly speaking – theft. There is no other word for it.

              • Gosman

                Ummm… the fact you used the word ‘sell’ means it is not theft at all. You havs agreed to part with ownership rights in exchange for money. It is called a ‘Transaction’ and they happen all the time. When you buy food from a supermarket you do not steal the items in question.

                • Foreign waka

                  Righto, I will sell your house and bob is my uncle. All good in the paradise of the take what is not yours.

            • tricledrown 1.2.1.1.1.3

              gooseman so why has my power bill gone up 6x what it was
              why has my phone bill not including internet gone up 4x what it was.
              when the govt had it.
              where ever their has been a sell off prices have gone up.
              only after Kiwi Bank was set up to compete with the big four did my banking costs come down by a whopping margin.
              the free market is myth private cartels and monopolies controljust about every business sector offshoring profits to boot.
              at least when the govt owned it the profits returned to new zealand.
              now most profits are exported.
              hence our continually increasing balance of payments deficit.

              • Gosman

                Do you have a choice where you get your power, telecommunication services and banking services from? If so then you can decide to move if you feel you are bei g ripped off. When Telecom existed as a State run monopoly you did not have that choice for telecommunication services.

          • greywarshark 1.2.1.1.2

            Just talking yesterday about the roll up of broadband throughout the country. Something called Crown Fibres? owns all the copper and fibre in NZ. May be a public-private partnership, along with Chorus doing the work. It is being done for free.

            I reckon when it is done the gummint will sell the whole caboodle or at least a large part, even the major shareholding, to probably USA investors. And that will be another plum belonging to the people sold at a special auction by those auctioneers extraordinaire, the NZ Government a la neo lib, (ex Roger Douglas and his band of merry men with women camp followers.)

            Who will be in charge of phone tapping and listening and looking in then?

            • Gosman 1.2.1.1.2.1

              Wow! What an amazing amount of leftist conspiracies you have crammed in to a single comment about broadband infrastructure.

            • greywarshark 1.2.1.1.2.2

              It’s not conspiracy, it’s just neo libs’ idea of doing good business and efficient government, for the best advantage and return to themselves, their funders and supporters.

    • Foreign waka 1.3

      Paul – Friedrich von Hayek was born in the time of the Oesterreich-Ungarischen Monarchy, 1899. He became a British citizen in 1938 and received the Order of the Companions of Honour by Queen Elizabeth II.
      He was influenced by i.e, John Locke (Philosophy, Medicine), Karl Popper (Philosopher), Ludwig Wittgenstein (Philosophy) just to name a few.

      He was the product of privileged upbringing facing a tumultuous world where the social strata changed dramatically and 2 WW were fought.
      In his time Austria went within a span of just 30 years from a Monarchy that at its end was the start of WWI, to a republic, to a fascist state, to a cavil war that lead to a dictatorship, followed by the annexation by the Nazi and WWII.
      This web page gives a better account of the “Zeitgeist” during these catastrophic years:
      http://encyclopedia.1914-1918-online.net/article/historiography_1918-today_austria-hungary

      It stands to reason that the circumstances lead him to flee to Britain, a functioning Monarchy and to take up citizenship. He published The road to Serfdom in 1944.
      He essentially argues that the tendency to regulate also has the result of reducing personal freedom. With the history he has witnessed, no wonder!

      My point of view is, that the far right is naturally thralled to bits with the concept of personal freedom, but for them it comes without personal responsibility and thus coherency and acknowledgement of the interdependence of all “activity” – economic as well as political. This conscience blindness has and is leading to a situation quite reminiscent of the time between the 2 great wars. Opulence vis a vis poverty and the artificial creation of wealth.

      In this light, Friedrich Hayek quotes do make sense:
      ‘Emergencies’ have always been the pretext on which the safeguards of individual liberty have been eroded.
      A claim for equality of material position can be met only by a government with totalitarian powers.

  2. Gosman 2

    A number of those people have pledged to give much of their wealth to charities. Indeed the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation is spending billions attempting to alieviate the effects of poverty in developing countries. Do you want to stop them doing this?

    • Bill 2.1

      Do you want to stop them doing this?

      Do you want poverty/gross inequality alleviated at the systemic level?

      • Gosman 2.1.1

        If you can show me a system that does that effectively I’d be interested in it. Do you have such a system in mind with practical examples?

        • Bill 2.1.1.1

          Nice to read you implicitly acknowledge that inequality is a systemic issue.

          So now we can throw aside any facile contentions that rich people merely work harder/better/smarter.

          You want a way to shift away from this state of affairs, then there are broadly two options that come to mind.

          1. Band-aid. Leave the same incentives that are at play in place and use tax and/or universal entitlements as tools of redistribution so that inequality is lessened. History tells us this only works in the short term – that such measures get ‘rolled back’.

          2. Identify the incentives and drivers within a capitalist framework (within a market economy) that encourage and reward economic behaviours that result in inequality and poverty. Then remove those incentives and drivers by replacing them with others that reward economic behaviours that lead to more desirable social outcomes.

          • Gosman 2.1.1.1.1

            No practical examples of number 2 I note.

            Take a couple of the individuals on that list. How were Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg ‘wrongly’ incentivised?

        • Foreign waka 2.1.1.2

          Gosman –

          Social Democratic.

          BTW – The Gates Foundation contributes the lion share of 3152 million US $ to GAVI Alliance (Vaccines) and 1535 million to the World Health Org.
          Not that there is anything wrong with that but if a person holding basically the world at ransom with software, nothing less will do.
          Imagine if the money would be in circulation via free computers in schools, books and reading programs for all kids, even school lunches – in every school in the US. Imagine how well educated and fed kids would create a better world with a frame of mind that is not clouded by anger and hatred about inequality. Because kids do not understand the politics of the adult world, they do react to what the encounter. Hunger and fear can have many outcomes, it takes a very strong person to withstand the emotions of envy, anger, violence. Have a look at the eyes of the kids being used in wars of all kinds. Nough said.

    • Paul 2.2

      Yes – there would be no need for such philanthropy if they paid their taxes.
      Your defence of the plutocrats is disgusting.

      Microsoft Admits Keeping $92 Billion Offshore to Avoid Paying $29 Billion in U.S. Taxes


      Why Mark Zuckerberg’s ‘Charity’ is a Scheme to Dodge Billions in Taxes

      Just 2 pieces of evidence.
      There’s much more.

      • Gosman 2.2.1

        Microsoft is not Bill Gates. Microsoft’s profits are eventually distributed to people like Bill Gates who then pays taxes on them so in essence Microsoft and Bill Gates do pay their share of taxes.

        • Paul 2.2.1.1

          Keep defending the plutocrats.
          You could bother to find out lots of information showing how the billionaires do not pay their taxes.
          But you won’t.
          You prefer to take your 30 pieces of silver.

          • Gosman 2.2.1.1.1

            Do you have evidence that Bill gates doesn’t pay enough tax? I suspect not.

            • Anno1701 2.2.1.1.1.1

              “Do you have evidence that Bill gates doesn’t pay enough tax”

              id call that a pretty fair assumption all things considered

              “in the balance of all probabilities” i believe……

            • Foreign waka 2.2.1.1.1.2

              You are kidding – right? You do know that the “donations” to the Foundation are tax deductible.
              And then:
              “Bill Gates will be receiving approximately $3 billion in dividends from Microsoft. That’s probably the bulk of his income for the year. Thanks to the new tax cuts, dividends are now taxed at a special 15% tax rate. This means Bill Gates will be paying essentially 15% on his dividend income”

              And this:
              In Britain alone Microsoft had revenues of 1.7 billion pounds via online sales and paid a poultry tax of zero pounds.

        • Draco T Bastard 2.2.1.2

          Bet you they don’t. They’ll have some sort of vehicle to bypass paying those taxes.

        • tricledrown 2.2.1.3

          so is that why microsoft were prosecuted under antitrust laws and forced to pay tax in the EU they had dodged.

    • saveNZ 2.3

      Unfortunately the super rich ‘branded’ charities seem more like lobby and tax dodging in many instances and seem to do nothing apart from lip service to decrease inequality or provide real charity.

    • The Fairy Godmother 2.4

      There is a real problem with this. They give the money and determine the direction of the charity. for instance in the United states charter school movement, the main drivers are the super rich. See here for info on how Gates spent 440 million on charter schools. https://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/got-dough-how-billionaires-rule-our-schools and here https://seattleducation2010.wordpress.com/2015/09/07/15765/.

      They use their money to push their own agenda taking away the democratic rights of citizens who should surely be electing politicians who are able decisions about major decisions about privatisation. The charter schools do not perform as well as public schools and in my opinion, they are educationally backward having very old fashioned and punitive education strategies. This is oligarchy in action.

      • Gosman 2.4.1

        Why is that a real problem? It is their money after all. How they spend it is their concern. Why do you or anyone else get to decide which charities they should support?

        • The Fairy Godmother 2.4.1.1

          So it’s Ok for people to use their money to buy policies and politicians then?

          • Gosman 2.4.1.1.1

            It is okay to use money to influence people yes. Even left wing people agree with that. Why else do Trade Unions give money to political parties

            • Tricledrown 2.4.1.1.1.1

              One person with uber wealth can exert more power than hundreds of low wage workers.
              Gooseman blue Herrings.

            • Draco T Bastard 2.4.1.1.1.2

              No it’s not and, no, a lot of Left-wing people don’t agree with giving money to political parties. That’s why many of us say that political parties should be state funded at the same level.

              • bwaghorn

                how would state funding allow new parties to rise while not wasting money on nut fringe single issue parties

              • Gosman

                Is there nothing that your Uber State can’t do Draco?

                • Draco T Bastard

                  This may come as a surprise but I’m not really a believer in the state. I believe in people and community.

                  Although you RWNJs put that belief to the test quite often.

            • Tricledrown 2.4.1.1.1.3

              If not for Trade Unions we would still have serfdom’s and you would be a nobody not allowed an opinion.
              You have the education(lacking in economic literacy) position in life Due to the good fight Unions waged to get these benefits you enjoy.
              But you want to take us back to Dickensian days.
              With your attempt’s at cynical trolling.

            • Foreign waka 2.4.1.1.1.4

              Gosman
              he more money – the more power. This is the reason of wealth accumulation over the last few thousand of years. If it would be donkeys tongues instead of dollars than they would be the currency with which to gain power and influence.

              The issue is, that in reality these behaviors have not changed since humanity developed from a hunter to a farmer. So from that point of view, no matter what educational degree a person holds, their development can be measured by their application reason rather than instinct.

              • Foreign waka

                Sorry, getting tired – long day…. The more money …
                and …. application of reason..
                Thanks

        • Draco T Bastard 2.4.1.2

          Because they should have no more say on what the country is doing than the poor that they create through their greed.

        • Lloyd 2.4.1.3

          Gosman, courts all over the world declare stolen property forfeit every day.
          If money is stolen it doesn’t belong to the thief.
          Monopoly capitalism is theft.
          Ipso facto the money isn’t ‘their money’.

    • Rae 2.5

      Bill Gates wealth came as bonus to his real passion, technology, which probably explains why he still has an altruistic view of life, he never really sought such wealth. Warren Buffet seems to be an exception that proves a rule. Dollars to doughnuts most extremely wealthy people would give very, very little and want to be in control what happens to whatever they give afterwards.
      I am damned sure most recipients of charity would rather be able to look after themselves.

      • Tricledrown 2.5.1

        Bill Gates power came from monopolizing the software industry.
        Undermining fair and free trade.

        • Gosman 2.5.1.1

          How has Microsoft monopolised anything? If you want to use a different operating system to Windows you are free to do so and there are a number of alternatives.

    • Draco T Bastard 2.6

      They shouldn’t need to do that. In fact, it’s because they’re so rich that is causing the problems that they’re spending a few billion to fix but the only fix is not to have rich people in the first place.

    • DoublePlusGood 2.7

      If they’d just taxed the superwealthy appropriately and spent the billions on alleviating poverty, this would have been vastly more efficient than relying on the charity of billionaires.

      • Gosman 2.7.1

        What is an appropriate level of taxation for superwealthy people?

        • Anno1701 2.7.1.1

          “What is an appropriate level of taxation for superwealthy people?”

          t̶h̶e̶i̶r̶ ̶h̶e̶a̶d̶s̶ ̶

          cough, sorry something caught in my gullet(ine)

          more than they contribute now thats for sure !

        • tricledrown 2.7.1.2

          Gooseman the likes of Donald Trump hasn,t paid taxes for years but has picked massive govt hand outs over $800 million in subsidies .
          $800 million in unpaid tax $800million in hand outs corporate welfare cheques.

        • DoublePlusGood 2.7.1.3

          Lots. They don’t need the money, and it’s highly efficient just having it all sit in Cayman Island and Panamanian bank accounts.

    • mpledger 2.8

      Bill and Melinda Gates are funding gazillions of astroturf organisations to forward their own particular agenda – reducing the privacy on children’s educational data so they can do data mining (thankfully sunk), trying to make certain technology and software mandatory in schools and promoting all sorts of ranking systems of schools and teachers which are really, really bad in theory and worse in implementation and not caring that lots of people are getting screwed over because of it.

      In third world countries they are funding private education companies at the expense of state run education that reduce access to education especially for girls and beggar families.

      So yea, apart from their work on malaria, I would like them to stop doing it.

      They aren’t benefiting ordinary people, just benefiting their own, and their friends, interests and getting gratification out of the power they have to change society to the way they want it – not realising that their wealth screws up their view of how society should be run.

  3. saveNZ 3

    Great post and research by Oxfam. I think the big issues now are exactly that,

    concentrated wealth by super rich
    aggressive wage restraint
    tax dodging and the squeezing of producers by companies
    Businesses too focused on delivering ever-higher returns to wealthy owners and top executives.

    • Gosman 3.1

      If those are the big issues where is the evidence that supports them? If you think profit margins are increasing as a result of the current focus then you should be able to show how they have increased over the past 10 years.

      • Tricledrown 3.1.1

        Corporate profits have gone up exponentially over the last 40 years while wages have stagnated.
        Because corporates evade democratically voted policy to share more wealth by continually moving to low wage countries and tax havens.
        Where drug Cartels Terrorist’s and corrupt politician also unsurp democracy.

        • Draco T Bastard 3.1.1.1

          +1

        • Gosman 3.1.1.2

          What is the average rate of return on capital now versus 30 years ago?

        • Anno1701 3.1.1.3

          “Corporate profits have gone up exponentially over the last 40 years while wages have stagnated.’

          yep capitalism = ideological failure , how was something with so many internal contradictions/clashes was even supposed to work anyway is beyond me

          we shouldve listened to the developing world, they figured that out a loooong time ago

      • Draco T Bastard 3.1.2

        More GDP going to capital than workers when it used to be the other way around.

  4. Adrian Thornton 4

    1. isn’t it ironic that this is a Guardian article, the Guardian who’s editors would rather eat their own babies than have any change to the status quo, just look at their relentless attacks on Bernie/Corbyn, the only two politicians to actually have this issue as a central part of their platforms…this rag is one of the very real enemies of progressive change…a real life Trojan horse.

    2. What a tragedy that both our main party’s in NZ are Free market driven centrists, so we all know nothing in these wealth inequality numbers will change in any meaningful way while either of them govern.

  5. Whispering Kate 5

    Oddly enough some of these super wealthy who are attending DAVOS, Warren Buffett is one, are gravely concerned about this widening inequality around the world. Not for any altruistic reason of course but because of their own safety and the safety of their billions. They obviously are not stupid people and can see the writing on the wall. Be interesting if anything sensible comes of this meeting at trying to address this serious problem. I am not confident, greed rules these days.

  6. Rae 6

    I have begun to think that thinking you need many, many times the amount of money that you actually do, is a mental disorder all of its own.

    • Gosman 6.1

      Bill Gates quite obviously doesn’t think that. He has managed to acquire his wealth by simply being extremely good at building an IT company. He has now decided to give a lot if his wealth away.

      • Rae 6.1.1

        See above to another answer to you. My point was about seeking wealth for its own sake

      • greywarshark 6.1.2

        Yes Rae it is a sort of madness, a brainstorm that obssesses – excesses are the driver and only ever larger repeat fixes can stop them going into withdrawal. The trick is to keep ahead of personal depression even if national depressions are killing off people’s hopes and lives.

      • Draco T Bastard 6.1.3

        Wonder how good he would have been at building that IT company if IBM had used a different OS.

        I suspect that, considering how shit MS software has been over the years, that he wouldn’t have been anywhere near as rich now.

  7. greywarshark 7

    Part of preventing poverty and income inequality is adequate welfare. Old age pensions called superannuation, are essential. But the way they are provided and the fact that there is no interaction with the old person so that they input at the same time they are being paid a living income is problematic at a time of longer life.

    It’s time that some problem solving meetings were held all round the country with old people so they can apply their own minds to how to make the situation more equitable. Scenarios can be discussed, with room to adopt more from the public, so that minds can be concentrated. And the elderly given a proper legal method to decide their own time of death, managed demise I call it. And people shouldn’t be harrassed to work on till 67. The Superannuation guru stating that age is an indication of how narrow the thinking of the bean counters is, the norm of limited understanding of the regular feed into the economy and its multiplier effect is ignored.

    The situation of volunteer work for NZ, or even overseas, counting for nothing should be addressed. It could be undertaken, and things that can’t be afforded could count as input. Mentoring and training a young person could count, plus helping the fire service administration, hospital visiting, reading recovery, running camps for city children, providing accounting help for charities, counselling sessions or helping the CAB (Citizens Advice Bureau), tackling weeds as Friends of the Parks, the Streets, running small organic plots for communities etc. All useful but not as prestigious as tapping on a keyboard and adjusting the computer setting for buy/sell on options and all that jazz.

    Chris Trotter had these kind and relevant words to say about older people
    and superannuation in his latest column.
    For the fifty years that followed the Great Depression and World War II the idea that older New Zealanders could somehow be absolved of their responsibilities toward younger New Zealanders, and vice versa, would have been regarded as absurd.

    People simply accepted that living through periods of paying taxes to support others, as well as periods when the taxes of others would support them, was what made a fair and decent society possible. Society benefited enormously from a well-educated and culturally enlivened citizenry. It also benefited enormously by making sure that every older citizen could live in security and dignity.

    Through a process of trial and error, spanning many decades, New Zealand discovered that the best way to preserve the security and dignity of its older citizens was to pay them what amounted to a universal basic income. Regardless of gender, ethnicity, sexuality or social class, every New Zealander over the age of 65 is guaranteed a modest income from the state.

    NZ Superannuation has played a huge role in reducing the incidence of poverty among elderly New Zealanders. Its universality makes it both cost effective and sustainable. Providing the progressivity of this country’s tax system is restored, it is also entirely affordable.

  8. johnm 8

    Gosman the right wing pussy needs feeding. But feeding him he takes over! 🙁 Still he’s our RWNJ Pet!. Every website needs a pet!

  9. Paul 9

    5 shocking facts about extreme global inequality

    1. Just eight men own the same wealth as the 3.6 billion people who make up the poorest half of humanity. None of them has earned his fortune through talent or hard work, but by inheritance or accumulation through industries which are prone to corruption and cronyism.

    2. Seven out of 10 people live in a country that has seen a rise in inequality in the last 30 years.

    3. The richest are accumulating wealth at such an astonishing rate that the world could see its first trillionaire in just 25 years. So, you would need to spend $1 million every day for 2738 years to spend $1 trillion.

    4. Extreme inequality across the globe is having a tremendous impact on women’s lives. Employed women, who face high levels of discrimination in the work place, and take on a disproportionate amount of unpaid care work often find themselves at the bottom of the pile. On current trends, it will take 170 years for women to be paid the same as men.

    5. Corporate tax dodging costs poor countries at least $100 billion every year. This is enough money to provide an education for the 124 million children who aren’t in school and prevent the deaths of at least six million children thanks to health care services.

    • tricledrown 9.1

      paul $100 billion tax avoidence is just in Africa alone when you talk tax avoidence
      $100 billion would cover just facebbook and google.

  10. Lloyd 10

    I have a query for monopolist capitalists concentrating more and more money in fewer and fewer hands.
    “Once one person has all the money, what happens to the market?”

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  • Foreign Minister announces new Consul-General in Los Angeles
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  • Bill passes for managed isolation charges
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  • New Zealand joins initiative to boost women’s role in global trade
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  • Government provides $2.2m to heritage buildings for quake strengthening
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  • Better hospital care for Northland babies and their whānau
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  • New Zealand expresses condolences on passing of Vanuatu High Commissioner
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  • PGF creates more than 10k jobs, success stories across NZ
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  • Southern Waikato shovel ready projects get the green light
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  • Govt progress on climate change essential, risk assessment shows
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  • Rakitū Island declared latest predator free island
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  • Funding to restore significant Māori sites in the Far North
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  • Big boost for Chatham Islands’ economy
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  • More initiatives to reduce energy hardship
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