Wealth Inequality Surges During Pandemic

A new report by Oxfam showed the extent that the rich have benefitted from the coronavirus pandemic while the majority of the global population are worse off. The report claims that the wealth of the 10 richest people has doubled since the start of the pandemic while 99% of the population are worse off.

From a historical perspective, Oxfam compares the current state of affairs to the Gilded Age of the late nineteenth century where wealth accumulation was extremely concentrated to the country’s wealthiest individuals. 

The report targets billionaires such as Elon Musk who have received massive government subsidies, consistently violate labor laws and suppress unionization efforts. 

“New figures and analysis released in December 2021 by the World Inequality Lab reveal that since 1995, the top 1% have captured 19 times more of global wealth growth than the whole of the bottom 50% of humanity.”, says the report. 

The capitalist economic system is predicated upon the exploitation of labor by the capitalists class who enrich themselves at the expense of the workers. The capitalists with the largest amount of capital are able to accumulate fortunes through their private ownership, while the majority of the population suffer. As long as the capitalist private ownership of the means of production exists, it is hard to imagine a world not afflicted by inequality and poverty. 

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