Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

The future of the species is literally imperiled right now because we've allowed rich people to hoard wealth, so that's a reason to care.

Really? I thought governments had a lot more, like trillions more. I thought the quality of life for humanity has never been better than now? Do you mean climate change? If so how does rich people's greed fit in the picture.

I don't think they should hoard cash, there should be a limit on that but net worth usually includea stock value, wealth in form of stocks is far from hoarding. I think cash wealth limits and a legal limit on pay gap would help but I still don't see the rich do anything they haven't done throughout history. If anything, democraric processes and institutions are failing the people.

You must be rich to talk like that. Rich people generally emit a f#ckton of co2 and worse, they do not use their wealth to try to mitigate it, thereby condemning their own children.

Not rich, not poor.

You're generalizing and stereotyping. If what you say is true then it seems your law makers are failing to implement laws that curtail CO2 emissions by rich people?

People can do anything legal with their money, if it shouldn't be allowed why is it legal? It seems you're taking a morao high ground against the rich, which is fine so long as you realize rich people are not above the law and even if they control civilian governments they don't control the military (at least not at non-admin levels) so democratic societies still have a lot of power. You also have to consider how just india and china generate emissions that eclipse the US but most billionaires are in the US. So it might feel nice to blame the rich and please don't let me get in the way but I don't see how fixing wealth inequality even makes a small dent on climate change. Mind you, publicly traded corps benefit the rich but their policy making is entirely designed to benefit shareholders as a whole.

I don't care who is to blame,show me solutions not a person to blame.

Oh yes, they are failing, and I can explain you why. We are in a deadlock in my country regarding elected representatives because the baby boomers vote and they are in greater number than us youngs, so the policy will always be conservative and economically liberal. Basically old conservatives control our future even if they have less life remaining than us on this Earth. (That's how I conceived a new democratic process by the way - amount of votes = number of years remaining in your life expectancy. Maybe a first solution offered to you to give younglings a chance about their future ?). Democracies do have power, but they lack a lot of will.

Add to that lobbies and economic agents controlling elected officials so they keep believing in the eternal growth lullaby, and yes - they ARE failing to implement laws that curtail CO2 emissions by rich people/powerful corporations. I really don't see how that's surprising or subject to debate - everything observable around us is in favor of this argument.

I'm not taking a moral high ground, the problem is systemic and I don't accuse anyone in particular. Rich people, not above the law ? Yeah... I won't answer that because I don't believe it to be true, but I cannot formally prove it.

Oh we do have solutions but you wouldn't like those. Carbon taxes, unlawful to eat meat besides on weekends, mandatory carbon offset of long-distance and/or plane trips, unlawful to advertise in public spaces and I have a whole lot more for you - but they will never get implemented ;)

oh, so it's all the global poor who are coordinating their efforts to reduce emissions of companies they don't own or operate?

thanks for clearing that up!

The global poor don't get to choose. When the choice is firewood or not being able to cook and stay warm, you use firewood.

When the choice is find some way to stay entertained without taking quarterly vacations on CO2 generating flights to expensive getaways or keep polluting somehow no one bats an eyelid.

There aren't enough rich people to compete with commercial airliner's emissions. Cruise ships are HUGE emittors(they even get around emissions control laws) for example but the western middle class is their user not the rich or poor.

You realize the first-world middle class taking cruises is as much a part of the rich as billionaires right?

A yearly salary of something like 32k puts you in the global 1% of earners. I won't be so strict about the definition of the rich, but families having money for cruises are definitely part of the demographic I'm speaking to.

And I mean, vacations is are just the tip of the iceberg, those people so poor they have to use firewood go survive, aren't the reason we have so many commercial airliners shuttling around goods so we can have the latest throwaway item we desire in 48hrs or less.

Being the global 1% earner means nothing in this context. Income is measured against context of currency. A USD can indeed buy a lot but perhaps housing is a lot cheaper in subsaharan africa than Manhattan? Same for food and other expenses? Regardless of their place in the world, being rich is only significant to how much expendible money you have left after accounting for neccessities. Even in america, $80k/yr can mean you're doing great if you live in some no name suburb or small town but you're lucky if you break even with that in NYC.

Your firewood analogies are sensetionalist but do not answer my question of how even if western civilization vanished over night climate change would be resolved? Perhaps delayed by a few decades. I would even say it might get worse due to undeveloped countries desire to compete with minimal costs and inability to create nuclear power or afford wind turbine farms,solar,etc... When oil,charcol and old cars are already affordable.

You spent a whole paragraph arguing a point invalidated in the next sentence when I point out I'm not using the 1% criteria, but rather the fact you have enough disposable income for a cruise (yes, financing it counts)

And my firewood "analogy" is sensationalist?

Is that a joke or are you just that out of touch with the reality of the actual poor.

My parents grew up in those conditions, and even as recently as the last few years we've had family members back home in that situation.



Your second paragraph is non sequitur. You didn't ask that question or even imply it!

If your point of your screed there is climate change is not worth fighting, it's not a unique viewpoint.

What a terrible thing if we were to come up with less polluting ways of living for no real benefit huh?

Goverments are more accountable than rich individuals.

Elon Musk is a great example of how consolidated wealth an individual has can have a large impact on outcomes.

It's not all bad news, but there are things going on with consolidated wealth that are very concerning right now.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact