Socialist Worker

The one percent get half the wealth and half the people get one percent

Issue No. 2476

A stark report highlighting the gross inequality between the world’s richest and poorest has revealed the top 1 percent of the global population now holds half its wealth.

The Credit Suisse Wealth Report found that the bottom half of adults owned less than 1 percent of world’s total wealth while the richest 10 percent held 87.7 percent of it.

To be in the wealthiest half of the world’s adult population, Credit Suisse calculated an individual would need £2,074. To be in the richest 10 percent, they would need £45,000.

And to be classified among the world’s elite 1 percent, they would require £491,051.

Mark Goldring from Oxfam said, “This is the latest evidence that extreme inequality is out of control. Are we really happy to live in a world where the top 1 percent own half the wealth and the poorest half own just 1 percent?

“Eyebrows were raised when earlier this year Oxfam predicted that the richest 1 percent would own more than the rest of us by 2016. The fact it has happened a year early—just weeks after world leaders agreed a global goal to reduce inequality—shows just how urgently world leaders need to tackle this problem.”

Britain held 4 percent of the world’s wealth, behind China at 16 per cent and the US at 12 per cent, acccording to the report.

The World Bank said by the end of 2015, 702 million people—9.6 percent  of the world’s population—will be living in extreme poverty.

That means they have less than £1.20 a day to live on.


Foreign Office cleaners were disciplined—some apparently sacked —after they wrote to foreign secretary Philip Hammond about their pay.

Someone should have told them that the chairman of the contractor they work for—Interserve—is Hammond’s fellow Tory Party member, Tory peer and former Thatcher adviser and banker Lord Blackwell.


PepsiCo paid ex-Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg £22,000 for taking part in an event in July discussing Britain’s future in the European Union.

PepsiCo said that Clegg had been invited to take part because of his “expertise” on European politics. 

Whoops.


Apostrophes for the grammar lobby

A year is a long time in politics. At the 2014 Conservative Party conference Nicky Morgan said, “There aren’t going to be any more grammar schools under me…I am resistant to selective education.”

This month Morgan gave the go ahead to the first new grammar school in 50 years.   Meanwhile a sign in the House of Commons for a meeting of the Grammar School Heads’ Association read “Grammer School Head’s Association”.  


The Daily Mail newspaper came out against academies last week. Sort of. Academies that Muslims are involved in, anyway.

It reported “fears” as a “Muslim academy trust” prepares to take over three community secondary schools.

It pointed out that private sponsors can introduce new religious education lessons, and 

alter sex and relationship education. For some reason the Mail hasn’t seemed too concerned about any of this up until now.


Standards slipping in the standards

Troublemaker regular Geoffrey Cox is the highest-earning MP. He earns hundreds of thousands of pounds a year for his work as a lawyer.

Cox has, on at least one occasion, failed to register his outside earnings within the 28 days required. 

So he has resigned from the House of Commons Committee on Standards and referred himself to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards.

The Committee on Standards oversees the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. 

The same Register of Members’ Financial Interests that Cox forgot to register the £325,000 he earned too.


David Cameron hoped his adventure with a pig’s head would be forgotten. But the Oxford Union recently held a debate on, “What happened at university should stay at university.”

Tory business secretary Sajid Javid spoke in favour. Troublemaker wonders why?


Increase in secret trials

The number of official applications for secret court hearings more than doubled in the past year, according to the Ministry of Justice. 

Two cases resulted in closed judgments where the full decision was not published. That means the defendant isn’t even allowed to know why they lost.

In the year 2013/2014, there were five. Over the same period last year there were 11. 

Secret intelligence can be introduced by the government in closed hearings during a secret case. But it will only be seen by the judge and security-cleared “special advocate”.


Tory planning row gets to court

Rich Tory toff Robert Vaudry has been charged with pushing a 70 year old in a long-running planning row.

Vaudry was a private secretary to former Tory prime minister Edward Heath. He wants to turn his £1 million property in Dorsington into a wedding and conference venue–but villagers object.

The villager said Vaudry’s “demeanor was aggressive” during the alleged confrontation in March. Vaudry denies the charge and is due in court next month.


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The Troublemaker
Tue 20 Oct 2015, 16:39 BST
Issue No. 2476
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