Today's Silicon Valley nouveau riche are a far cry from yesterday's old money, says conservative David Brooks. He calls the information age elite Bobos for bourgeois bohemians, "highly educated folk who have one foot in the bohemian world of creativity and another foot in the bourgeois realm of worldly success."
Bagel buttons, defrost buttons, reheat buttons, and cancel reset buttons: with all the wonders of modern technology, companies can't even make a reasonably priced toaster that lasts. It's symptomatic of what's gone wrong with our modern disposable society.
Conference Board, the New York-based business-backed research enterprise best known for its monthly Leading Economic Indicators and Consumer Confidence Index, recently released a report detailing the widening of the wealth gap. What's more surprising is the list of Fortune 500s who underwrote it.
The U.S. has pledged a billion dollars per year in loans to debt-saddled African nations that cannot afford high-priced HIV-treatment. Even though drug makers will sell the drugs at discounted prices, are the loans mere ploys to slow the development of less costly generic HIV-drugs?
Given the spectacular advances in clean automobile technology over the century, there is just no reason -- other than pure criminality -- why we have been forced to live and die today with gas-guzzling, polluting automobiles.
The legitimacy of a report warning that the UN Global Warming Treaty will push Blacks and Hispanics into poverty has been undermined by its questionable financing. Backed by a coal industry front group, the report was released by six Black and Hispanic labor, civil rights, and business organizations.
There may be legitimate public policy rationales for raising gas prices -- notably, to spur conservation -- but if so, such price increases should be government mandated, with revenues used for appropriate public purposes. They should not be the result of industry rip-offs and profiteering.
The endless amount of soft money cash flowing from corporate coffers into federal campaigns and national political parties have created a veritable tsunami of corruption that is crashing over the countryside. According to Charles Korb, president of the Committee for Economic Development, Washington's culture of corruption has given the green light to the rest of the country. "Go for it!" is the message being sent out from both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue -- and the country is responding.
"Tired of getting fundraising letters in the mail? Just imagine how hard it would be if you were a corporate CEO. Not only does virtually every politician come hat in hand seeking a campaign contribution, but you are besieged by a long line of nonprofit organizations asking for support. And now there is a new panhandler standing at the CEO's door: the upcoming WTO ministerial meeting."
"Today's financial and popular press suggests that the vast wealth of the United States comes from the creativity of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs. In reality, many U.S. fortunes are based on somebody else's wealth -- the natural resources of Native Americans."