Thanks for the Generosity, You 'Robber Barons'

The rich-poor divide is getting even worse
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2010 3:50 PM CDT
Thanks for the Generosity, You 'Robber Barons'
A file photo of Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.   (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

(Newser) – It's "admirable" that Bill Gates and Warren Buffett got their billionaire buddies to pledge huge sums to charity, writes Robert Reich at Salon. Not so admirable is "what this reveals about how much money is now concentrated in so few hands," he says. "It’s more evidence we’re back in the late 19th century when robber barons lorded over the economy and almost everyone else lost ground."

Back then it was easy for the Carnegies and Rockefellers, et al, to give away tons of money because they had so much. It's the same today. As the annual Forbes list demonstrates, the very rich are getting even richer even as the nation's median hourly wage shrinks. And then, of course, there's "the 15 million Americans still out of work," writes Reich. "Most Americans don’t need charity. They need good jobs." (Read more philanthropy stories.)

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