Oxfam International’s latest report on global inequality finds that while the 10 richest individuals in the world more than doubled their collective wealth since Covid-19 hit in 2020, the related result of this billionaire surge has been a deadlier and more prolonged pandemic for the rest of the world in which the incomes of 99 percent of humanity fell, over 160 million people were forced into poverty, and billions of the poorest were denied access to life-saving vaccines.
Vermeer. Velázquez. Kahlo. These names mean anything to you? They mean plenty to the world’s super rich. For the extraordinarily wealthy, the artworks of Vermeer, Velázquez, and Kahlo — and the many other great painters who have so shaped how we visualize our world — have become much more than cultural touchstones worthy of admiration. For these rich and their money managers, humanity’s artistic patrimony has become just another “asset class.”
Moderna, the world’s hottest new Big Pharma giant, now has four of its top players sitting on the annual Forbes list of America’s 400 richest. In early 2020, Moderna had none. Moderna’s Forbes 400 billionaire quartet owes its current good fortune completely to the company’s Covid-19 vaccine. And who made that vaccine possible? U.S. taxpayers.
New analysis shows that just 745 individuals have combined $5 trillion in wealth—most of which will never be taxed—as nations reels from pain inflicted by Covid-19.