World Bank chief Jim Yong Kim called for a global drive to wipe out extreme poverty by 2030, acknowledging that reaching the goal will require extraordinary efforts. “A world free of poverty is within our grasp. It is time to help everyone across the globe secure a one-way ticket out of poverty and stay on the path toward prosperity,” Kim said
Not a very difficult goal nor a paticularly ambitious one to achieve if you happen to a member of the world’s super-rich capitalists.
Last year, the world's billionaires added $800 billion dollars to their wealth. According to the latest issue of Forbes, when all the money is counted, the 1,426 billionaires have a combined net worth of $5.4 trillion. That means the average billionaire is worth about $3.8 billion. Of those billionaires in the U.S. -- 442 of them -- the average net worth is about $4.2 billion.
That's a whole lot of money and according to the OECD, the total amount of aid given by the wealthy nations of the world to the developing countries was only 3% of the total wealth of the world's billionaires.
There are 1.1 billion people without access to clean drinking water, according to the World Health Organization, and as a result 1.6 million people die of cholera and other diarrhea-related diseases every year. World Vision provides clean drinking water to about 1 million people every year, and we do it for a rough average of $50 per person, depending on the country and other factors. Theoretically, for about $50 billion clean water could be brought to every person on the planet thereby saving 1.6 million lives every year. That would cost just 1% of the total wealth possessed by the mega-rich.
Lack of nutrition contributes to the deaths of 2.6 million school children. The World Food Program estimates that $3.2 billion is all it would take to make sure children stay alive and grow up fully nourished. For less than measly 0.6% of the wealth of the world's billionaires could end childhood deaths from hunger -- saving 4.2 million lives.
Socialist Courier is not suggesting that philanthropy will solve these problems, just putting the situation into perspective. Capitalism is the root cause of why the poor needlessly suffer and die. The world has the technical solutions and all the field-tested programs to end hunger and most disease. Advances in health, agriculture, education and technology has given the world the tools needed to make changes. These all exist and can be deployed by a rational society that declares peoples needs should be satisfied instead of being only resources employed to make profits for the few.