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Issue #1717      February 3, 2016

Alarming revelations of The Global Wealth Report

The rich are getting richer …

Some very disturbing and alarming facts were revealed recently by the annual Oxfam Report and the Global Wealth Report for 2015 of the Credit Suisse Research Institute. According to these reports there are today 62 people who own as much wealth as half of the earth’s population, 3.5 billion people!

These 62 multi-billionaires have witnessed the increase of their wealth by 44% since 2010. At the same time the wealth owned by 3.5 billion people was decreased by 41%. This demonstrates without any doubt that the motto of the “wonderful world” of capitalism we live in is the rich become richer and the poor, poorer.

It is further revealed that approximately 7.6 trillion dollars accumulated in the coffers of these 62 super rich capitalists is deposited in offshore “tax paradises”. This untaxed wealth means a loss of revenue of the order of $190 billion.

As much as 30% of the whole financial wealth of Africa is deposited in “taxation paradises” which means an annual loss of revenue of $14 billion that would be enough to provide health and care services to 4 million children every year and to secure that every African child attended school.

The Annual Wealth Report indicates that approximately half of the global wealth (42.5%) is owned by multi-billionaires who constitute 0.7% of the global population. In the second place are the affluent social strata who constitute 7.3% of the population and own 40% of the wealth.

The rest of the earth’s population, 92% of the people, own only 15.4% of the wealth and the great majority of those, 71% own only 3% of the global wealth.

If the findings of the current Wealth Report are compared with the corresponding reports of previous years we arrive at some revealing conclusions. The most important of these conclusions is:

During the period 2010 - 2015 the wealth owned by these multi-billionaires increased by 60% and the percentage of global wealth owned by them increased by 10%. At the same time the wealth of the poorer social strata, the 71% of the world population, was decreased by 10%.

The questions raised following these revelations, include: Is this unacceptable situation a natural phenomenon of the human society or is it a social/political phenomenon?

The only correct and sensible answer to this question by any member of the disadvantaged section of the earth’s population, the 92% of the people, is that this intolerable situation is the result of specific policies pursued globally by a handful of multinational corporations, powerful capitalist enterprises and their state apparatuses for a long time. Policies designed to increase their power and wealth to the detriment of the overwhelming majority of the peoples of the world.

The above answer must also include the inevitable conclusion that this cannibalism of the multinationals is inherent in the capitalist system, the system of exploitation of man by man, which builds its power on the capitalist ownership of the means of production.

The final conclusion that follows from the above answer is that this inhumane system must be overthrown and replaced by another social system which will have as its main aim the satisfaction of the needs and the defence of the interests of the overwhelming majority of the people: The socialisation of the means of production and the equitable distribution of the wealth produced by human labour.

This new system is no other than socialism, where the power is the hands of the people and exercised by the people for the people.

Next article – Robert Dampf as I knew him

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