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8 Ways to Reduce Global Inequality


8 Ways to Reduce Global Inequality

Marjorie Elizabeth Wood, Nick Galasso

Extreme economic inequality is corrosive.

It makes poverty reduction harder, hurts our economies, and drives conflict and violence. Reversing this trend presents a significant challenge, but one where we’ve seen some progress. Below we offer eight ways to move the world forward in reducing global inequality.

1. A Check on Illicit Outflows

In developing countries, inadequate resourcing for health, education, sanitation, and investment in the poorest citizens drives extreme inequality.


Cooperatives would seem to be an essential addition to this list. I look at the recent history of New Era Windows, the workers who were going to be laid off made it their own. Food co-ops are on the rise, have been building mutual support infrastructure - the breadth of potential is awesome to consider.


Perhaps this article should be made mandatory reading for proponents of RTW legislation in the Wisconsin state legislature and Governor Walker…nah, they don’t believe in equality, workers’ rights, fair wage laws, and rights to organize. Money is power (the more money, the more power) and it has been demonstrated that not only does it buy legislation in any number of states that suppresses wages and benefits that, in turn, shore up the corporate bottom lines (profits); it also corrupts elections on state and federal levels. Seems our “democracy” is hamstringed, hog-tied, and garroted by the wealthiest and corporations virtually to the point-of-no-return. As long as voter turnout hovers around 30 to 35% across the US, there will be pipers to pay. ALEC (a Koch Bros. creation bought and paid for) crafts bills and initiatives that are distributed to “friendly” local, regional, and state elected (and/or appointed) officials who ram them down the throats of the citizenry regardless of public opinion (anti-abortion, anti-planned parenthood, anti-voting rights, anti-labor/living wage, anti-women’s rights, anti-environment and always pro-industry are just a few examples.) I would bet that ALEC was behind the RTW B-S in Wisconsin.

Strategies provided by Wood and Galasso in this article are not new or novel and have been proven in the past to be successful (FDR - New Deal, LBJ - Great Society, i.e.) but will be a very hard sell in the current political atmosphere in the power centers.


Hear! Hear!

I’d love to see some articles on alternative economics, especially Buddhist. Capitalism may be necessary for the next 15-25 years while we save our sorry asses from climate catastrophe with efficiency, renewables, reforesting, permaculture and a switch to ecological craft-industry.

Simply moving to Marxist ideologies is not the answer, as we’ve seen that whatever economic system is instituted, its actions, assumptions and institutions are determined by the same disease that created, and is still creating Capitalism. So we’d go from one destructive system to a different but equally destructive one.

As Buddhism does, we have to at least acknowledge the primacy of psychology in this, and although we can’t heal our condition in time to save us from the current ecological crisis, we can use the last fossil fuels and last gasps of a self-choking Capitalism to at least build the infrastructure to buy us time to heal our deeper problems.

Going from there is up to future generations, but first we have to make sure there are some, and then we have to unsaddle them from the ecological and economical wreck that we’re in danger of leaving behind.


Inequality is based on mode of production that is capitalism in today’s world. Is Buddhism a kind of mode of production?


Wealth must not be seen in isolation from the community through which it arises; a community’s expectations and tools (material and intellectual) are the basis for its accumulation of material and intellectual “property:” community property! It is vital that such understandings be presented in concrete ideas; calling for a Buddhist or Marxist or Schumacherian economics may show that we have read a book or hold a system of beliefs, but does nothing to solidify and simplify the kinds of understandings that must become part of the community experience and expectation, so that controls on individual human action serve that community.


An international banking regulation, that requires sovereign debt to be backed with Commons shares, with the interest payed on that debt distributed to the shareholders, and prudent restrictions to safeguard the capital.

A Commons share valued at $1M could then be distributed to each adult human on the planet, for deposit in trust at local banks, without significant cost to anyone.

The debt created by loaning this newly recognized wealth would provide a global BI.

Practical example: A country with a population of 1 M, along with state, municipal, and some level of individual participation, could borrow a maximum of $1T (equivalent) against it’s citizens shares. With a debt, and a treasury of $1T, the country can develop a financial plan to increase revenue to cover the $12 B in annual interest payments. Just like any start-up.

Every one a millionaire, and a capitalist, and a socialist.


If you take #5 and move it to the top, you probably don’t need the other 7. Empower the working class with collective bargaining power and a labor based political party will surely arise. Replace the capital based economy (stock and derivative trading and private ownership of property) with production of real goods and services by a fully engaged working class. Improve the production of real value wealth through worker owned collectives, worker owned small business and government employed servicers of a social safety net (education and health care collectively provided by all of us and available to all of us). Empower workers and the capital house of cards will come tumbling down. Empowered workers can save this world and the 1% can do nothing about it.