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What are some realistic and creative ways to reduce wealth inequality?

I am a a third year student completing a degree in Social Work in Hamilton, New Zealand. I am currently doing a paper on Social and Community Development where I have to consider a topic of interest and then form a plan based on a theoretical perspective to eliminate or reduce a social issue.

My chosen topic is: Then impact of wealth inequality on social cohesion within New Zealand.

I would love to hear some creative and realistic thoughts around reducing this social issue which is a rapidly increasing, world wide issue. If anyone is well versed around topics such as this, stating your political ideology/perspective/basis of your ideas would be a great help so that I am able to further research the good idea's!

The primary focus will be on reducing wealth inequality as by doing this, social cohesion will increase. Despite this, I do hope to develop a small scale plan to increase social cohesion as well to strengthen the assignment.

Thanks heaps in advance :)

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    May 24 2013: reducing wealth inequality is like saying we want everyone to have the same intelligence.

    I think that you are looking at the wrong aspect of wealth, since people who work harder than others deserve what they work for. If it wasn't, people wouldn't work hard.

    What i think you should really concentrate on is perhaps the idea of increasing the minimum average income of the people. and this ties in with education, work and health. If its a Robin Hood scenario, things like this wouldn't work.
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        May 24 2013: any statistics supporting it? gates? jobs? zuckerberg? walton of walmart? your statement lacks any basis whatsoever.
        • May 25 2013: To Krisztián Pintér
          Your suggested need for statistics is correct.
          I cannot agree with you about the list of those you've named.
          Try again son, try again.
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        May 24 2013: LaMar,

        I'm sure you heard the line "a fool and his money are soon parted"
        I feel for the most of the time, this holds true, and the people with the better skills tend to manage getting the money, unless in cases where the previous generations made certain types of investments that even with less knowledgeable descendants, they will still have lots of money.

        If however, your forebears found ways to make money, and passed that onto theirs decendants, and further on down the generations, money would really only stay with them if it is sustainable. If not, other people would be able to get their hands on it.

        If you feel that people with money don't deserve it, their actions should take care of it, instead of a feeling that a person has that they don't deserve it.

        An example would be like the major mines that are owned by foreign owners all over Africa. Nowadays, the people are taking more of an initiative to keep the resources for themselves by introducing many other alternatives. This is happening in my country with the gold market.
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        May 24 2013: i asked for some support for your claims, not a rant. 149 out of 400 is not even half, let alone a "large percentage". and it is worldwide, many countries being kingdoms of effective kingdoms. as usual, you just drop in claims with no basis
        • May 25 2013: Krisztián Pintér

          LaMar is correct. Pay attention lad.
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        May 24 2013: Tax is a way for governments to get money, not people.

        People who don't know how to manage money eventually get swindled for it. Since not all accountants or worker would do the best to keep someone else s money safe.

        Lets just say that from the time history began, i do not know of a family which has exclusively had money through all their generations. Perhaps you know of some?
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        May 24 2013: Curious................do you have a problem with people inheriting ?

        If so why?

        You have zilch to look forward to?
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      May 24 2013: There is no reason why everyone should not have the same intelligence, as well as wealth. Humanity has the power to grow neurons, and understand how to heal people with any type of neurological disorder. With gene therapy, we can help anyone.

      It is about the money. Wealthy people are becoming more wealthy and powerful, and they are ones who can decide where the money goes.

      However, it is not always the wealthy who create problems. Corrupt people ruin it for everyone. Unethical people ruin for everyone...
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        May 24 2013: Having intelligence is not the same as using it. People use it differently.

        Who are the people who have the worst sentiment towards rich people?
        Who are the people who give the most charities?
        Would poor people deal with this money better? Clearly not, that's why they're poor.
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          May 24 2013: Wow, I have never argued with someone from South Africa! Cool :) (nice to meet you)

          Tell my friend with Cerebral Palsy and who has a difficult time working...that he is poor because he can't deal with money.

          The people who do most for charities are not the wealthy. Most of the wealthy I know throw money live in fear of being taken advantage of...mostly by other wealthy people. The people who do most for charities are the people who put time and love in, not just money.
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        May 24 2013: It's a pleasure sharing views.

        Fair enough, time and love does count, but money gets results as well.

        When would you say is a wealthy person spending enough for charity then?

        The guy with a health issue is of course an exclusion, so I'll state there are some exclusions, eg if a person has cerebral palsy.

        My point, you don't solve being poor by taking away from the rich. You solve it by empowering the powerless with tools such as education, responsibility, jobs and healthcare.
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          May 24 2013: I like that question, when is enough...actually enough? Only a higher power would know...?

          That would be a good debate!

          I agree it is not fair to take anything, from anyone, unless the person stole or was corrupt or unethical.
          My way of fixing wealth disparity would be to abolish and break up any large corporation, spread the money and opportunity around. A restaurant does not need to be a chain restaurant. Only one is needed. An automobile company should only have one factory. That way we have thousands of choices of cars. I would like a car from South Africa instead of South Korea. Or better yet, I would like a car made in Lesotho. I would like a computer from Yemen, and gene therapy from Madagascar.
        • May 25 2013: Yusuf, I agree with your last paragraph about the "empowering the powerless with tools such as education, responsibility, jobs and healthcare." also, let me quote from a report in today's Wall Street Journal about a book written by a Chinese economist; Yang, who was telling the horrible story about the so-called "great leap forward" movement under the idealism of wealth equalization.
          "...it was in 1958 as Mao initiated Great Leap Forward, demanding huge increase in grain and steel production. Peasants were forced to work intolerable hours to meet impossible quota ,.. employing disastrous ag methods inspired by the quack Soviet agronomist Lysenko. The grain that was produced was shipped to the cities, and even exported abroad. (but) with no allowances made to feed the peasants adequately. Starving peasants were prevented from fleeing their districts to find food."
          "Thirty six MILLION Chinese (peasants) succumbed (died) to FAMINE between 1958 and 1962. ..There were no major drought or floods in China in these famine years. Rather, they were all man-made, (by Mao and his followers) "
          Let me also supplement the report about the steel quota; the steel produced in the BACKYARD FURNACES of people's homes, most of them were unusable because of inferior quality.
          Therefore, the calling for wealth equalization must not be based on policies of unrealistic expectations. They should not be done by government bureaucracy. They must be done by a well planned strategy, voluntarily contributed by the entire society without coercion. They must get the capitals by PERSUASION & COOPERATION from the rich, instead of breaking up a large company into single entities. The latter approach would only increase the cost of a Big Mac in a sole-ownership of a McDonalds restaurant. Same problem would occur when we want to buy a car from Lesotho, or a computer from Yemen. Moreover, I doubt that the car or computer will even work at all, similar as the steel produced from China in the Mao era.
        • May 26 2013: Gentlemen,
          I have enjoyed your back and forth debate greatly. All of you seem to have your heads on pretty straight.

          However........ (you knew that was coming, didn't you) you have made a classic error in your thinking (and I mean you no disrespect whatsoever; even well educated economists make the same mistake). You have not separated, in your mind, "wealth" from "money" and "jobs" from "income."

          It is essential to your understanding that you do so. You see, gentlemen, a large corporation that is worth $100 million, does NOT have $100 million dollars. Same is true of a "rich" man; he doesn't have millions of dollars in "money" lying about.

          The corporation's total wealth surely includes the money it has BUT.... it also includes its land, factories, machinery, other equipment, etc. Very often these holdings are added to by the corp. also owning shares in other corps.

          While all this is indeed "wealth" as we understand it, it is NOT money; it cannot be spent. It can't be used to pay better wages or offer other perqs to its employees.

          Once you see this, you'll understand that taking the wealth away from the wealthy (whether individuals or corps) is not so easy as you might imagine. Even if you find a way to do so, what guarantee have you that this wealth will be distributed among the rest of the population?

          While we hear much about jobs being required for the poor to pull themselves up, we must realize that the wealthy don't have jobs. The rich obtain most of their money from their shares of successful corporations. In fact, many of them earn so much money this way that they can live extremely well while still having large sums to invest in further shares.

          My 2 comments up above, in this thread, show how I'd put profit-earning shares in the hands of EVERYONE so that all can earn income from the success of our corporate citizens. It DOES NOT require "taking from the rich." All it requires is a change in how wealth is inherited and by whom it's inherited.

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