Posts Tagged ‘Oxfam’

Inequality and Its Critique

January 22, 2019

By Anjum Altaf

Oxfam presented its new report at Davos whose main takeaway for India is that:

“Indian billionaires saw their fortunes swell by Rs 2,200 crore a day last year, with the top 1 per cent of the country‚Äôs richest getting richer by 39 per cent as against just 3 per cent increase in wealth for the bottom-half of the population.”

https://theprint.in/economy/richest-indians-got-wealthier-by-39-worlds-poorest-saw-their-fortunes-dip-by-11-in-2018-says-oxfam-study/180630/

Shekhar Gupta at The Print has castigated this report in very strong terms as methodologically flawed and politically motivated.

Please read the news item and watch Gupta’s critique then write a comment with your own analysis. Where do you come out on this issue? [I wish he would stay still while speaking — it is tortuous to watch]

Here is a set of expert opinions solicited by The Print:

https://theprint.in/talk-point/oxfam-inequality-study-skewed-parameters-to-assess-wealth-or-disbalanced-economic-growth/181348/

Consider the three in conjunction with the following argument which inserts some much needed theory into the debate.

https://thebulwark.com/is-all-economic-growth-created-equal/

Read this as well. The authors are collaborators of Thomas Piketty who brought inequality on the agenda with his Capital in the Twenty First Century.

Nobody has really thrown out Piketty’s data or methodology. For the most serious critique see the following by Debraj Ray:

https://www.econ.nyu.edu/user/debraj/Papers/Piketty.pdf

Those wishing to push further can read the following response by Branko Milanovic:

http://glineq.blogspot.com/2014/06/where-i-disagree-and-agree-with-debraj.html

I look forward to your contributions.

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