The Observer (editorial)
The World Economic Forum’s annual Davos shindig “became a laughing stock a long time ago”, says The Observer newspaper. All those denunciations of global inequality by “corporate captains clinking champagne glasses” in the snow at shareholders’ expense have long seemed ridiculous.
But the penny seems finally to be dropping that the game really is up. The giant FTSE 100 asset manager Standard Life Aberdeen has announced that its executives won’t be attending next year, and that it plans to allocate its £3m budget “to something more useful”. The likelihood is that others will follow suit.
One of the World Economic Forum’s “thin justifications for the existence of Davos” was that a gathering of politicians and business leaders would help “create global responses to global risks”. The evidence for that was always hard to spot – “never more so than now”. Lack of international cooperation has been a defining feature of the world’s early response to the spread of the virus. Come next January, when the global economy will almost certainly still be depressed, “the fleets of corporate jets at Swiss airports” will seem even more offensive than usual. “Try teleconferencing.” (The Observer and The Week, 2 May 2020).
My comment: ”I own a bigger yacht and more West Indian islands than you. And have you met my “secretary”? She travels everywhere with me”. It’s all just an opportunity to boost the (probably already overweening) ego and find overpaid jobs for the kids. Networking on steroids, but not many ideas about global responses to global risks. Spend the money saved on better pay for teachers and nurses, but, firstly, make serious collective waves about global warming (they could have had an impact on the virus, but that’s far too late). The warming is an even bigger threat to everyone on the planet.