Rich People Won’t Save Us. 

People say ‘but there’s no planet B for rich and powerful people either.’ and then too many believe that the rich will save us all, because they’ll need to save themselves. Any minute now. 

Well, April Fools. That’s not how they’re seeing it.

There seem to be a few categories happening here.

1. The eschatologists (Mercer family). They’re sure that bringing about the end of the world is how they’re ensuring their place in the afterlife.

2. The ‘I’ll just live in space’ folks, (Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos). They think they get a Planet B all to themselves.

3. The ‘I’m going to be dead before it gets really bad, so who cares?’ folks (Warren Buffet, the Waltons).

4. The bunker folks (Peter Thiele and everybody in Silicon Valley you were hoping were putting their money into new carbon-sucking magic). For more on this, check out Douglas Rushkoff’s great essay.

5. The ‘science, schmience’ folks (Trump, Putin, Murdoch) who reject reality and will substitute their own reality until they die. Because facts are elitist and can’t be controlled and should therefore be ignored. 

There is a 6th category of rich and powerful people who do seem to operate as if they share our planet: Michael Bloomberg, Bill Gates, Richard Branson. But they’re not enough, and they still make dubious choices. (As do we all, but they make them with bigger stakes.)

So we can’t wait around for rich and powerful people to champion the cause or lead the charge or invent the tech. 
The wealthy knights on golden steeds aren’t coming to save our global village. In fact, they’re actively in the way.

They are so separate from the rest of us and so apparently devoid of empathy that all those dystopian novels with the rich in their cities in the clouds or fortresses don’t seem dystopian to them. They know they’ll be fine. Fine in a bunker, maybe, but fine. We must stop waiting for them to wake up and find altruism like 1000 billionaire Scrooges. 

If they had any altruism, they wouldn’t be billionaires. That’s not a sign of good working habits and model morality, it’s a sign of incalculable greed and sociopathy.

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