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If only Nesrine understood numbers

Look at how the 1% are doing right now, and tell me the system isn’t rigged
Nesrine Malik


But a roaring 20s is actually happening, just not for most of us. According to Oxfam’s annual inequality report, released to coincide with the World Economic Forum meetings in Davos, the richest 1% of people have captured nearly twice as much new wealth as the rest of the world combined since the pandemic. Their fortune soared by $26tn, increasing their share of new wealth from 50% to two-thirds.

Who are the global 1% by wealth? To use a round number, anyone with $1 million in assets.

For no, the report is not about the 1% of each society. It’s about that global 1%.

So, the global 1% includes Polly Toynbee, Will Hutton and Katherine Viner. It includes every GP in Britain retiring early because they’ve hit the pension pot limit – which is currently a little over $1 million, that limit.

Actually, it includes pretty much anyone who owns a flat or house in SE, maybe even South, England mortgage free and also has a decent defined benefits pension. Be a lot of mature nurses and schoolteachers in that group then.

It’s housing equity plus pension pot plus personal belongings plus financial assets minus debts. $1 million. Which includes most British professionals and an awful lot of middle middle class types in their 50s and 60s.

It’ll also, soon enough, include Nesrine Malik. Buy a place in London, keep paying into the Guardian pension fund, write a couple of medium selling books and she’ll be there, right enough.

Woes, eh, we have met the global 1% and it is us.

15 thoughts on “If only Nesrine understood numbers”

  1. ‘… richest 1% of people have captured nearly twice as much new wealth…’

    Must be a typo, so I’ve corrected it.

    … richest 1% of people have CREATED nearly twice as much new wealth…

    Sophistry at work. The old Socialist notion being that there was a finite wealth cake, and any one who got wealthier dud so by ‘capturing’ a bigger slice, taken from the slices of others who got smaller slices as a consequence.

    Craftily they insert the word ‘new’, but the readers is meant to infer the same – the greedy rich getting wealthier by taking from the poor poor.

  2. There used to be a site called “Global Rich List” where you could input your annual income (I think it was less tax but including pension contributions etc) and it would tell you what percentile you were in.
    AFAIR, (haven’t been on the site for about 8 years and it appears to have sunk without trace), anyone on average income in the UK was in the top 2 or 3%. It would tell you how many Doctors that would pay for in Africa and other interesting comparisons too.

  3. Yep, there was a query on one of the accounting forums I frequent about a senior nurse on £82k a year and how her notional pension pot was pretty much maxed out.

    My heart bled for her and I could see why she needed a 19% pay rise.

  4. The world’s super-rich? Bonanza of plunder? When did the British middle-class become conflated with Billionaires? Our Treasury takes a significant sum from my pocket – income tax, council tax, excise duties, VAT, stamp duty, motoring taxes, capital gains…etc. I pay, grudgingly at times. Politicians assure me that despite my diminutive form I have big shoulders, so I suck it up. Am assuming Oxfam’s rationale is that I split what’s left to me and – after accounting for the cost of those lads arriving in rubber dinghies, the levelling up, the out-of-work benefits for 5.3 million of Britain’s working age population – donate it to our cousins in far-off lands that remain stuck in the mire. Just as well I gave up smoking. I’ll give Mordaunt one thing: capitalism does indeed hang in the balance and, if we aren’t careful, Gordon Brown’s wet dream could actually come to fruition.

  5. @DocBud… I believe the counter argument is that talent, intelligence and drive is a quirk of fate, down to luck of the draw rather than something earned (similar to inherited wealth). And for that you must be penalised, handicapped, not praised or rewarded.

  6. I have 28/35ths of a state pension, which a quick bit of maths tells me I have £250,000 in assets. Add on the half share of my house, and that gets me towards a third of a million.

  7. These people have as much understanding of how economies, money and tax works as they do have how computers actually operate. They are clueless.

    One only has to read the comments repeating the trope that money in offshore accounts is somehow sequestrated and locked up in a vault yet somehow at the same time the wealthy have assets.

  8. I wonder how many UK citizens are poor by any measure if you cast it at the global level? Once you include welfare! Kind of puts the kybosh on anyone claiming that poverty is a problem in the UK!

  9. Wonko, they use the term’poverty’ when they mean ‘relative’ poverty. My mate has three cars, including a Porsche. Anyone with only one or two cars is obviously in poverty and needs finacial assistance from the state.

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