Posts Tagged ‘inequality

This is my Polemic column for the May issue of Fund Strategy. Writing about economic and investment topics in recent years I have kept stumbling across some initially unexpected themes. It is time to start pulling them together. The most striking is what could be called inside-outerism. This is the pervasive tendency for elite functionaries […]

My latest book review for the FT was published yesterday. Russian oligarchs, in the popular imagination, are often seen as exemplifying the worst qualities associated with wealth. They are frequently linked to ostentation, corruption and even outright gangsterism. The reality, of course, is more complex. Oligarchs emerged in the 1990s alongside the tumultuous transition to […]

When trying to refute a misplaced idea it is best to take its most coherent and lucid expression as a target. Taking apart a sloppily expressed argument is unlikely to convince many that its premises are fundamentally flawed. In the spirit of aiming at hard targets it is worth looking closely at the work of […]

It was only recently that I recognised the adoration Britain’s leading financial newspaper has for the man often dubbed the thinker behind the Occupy movement. The Financial Times published a long extract from David Graeber’s new book, The Utopia of Rules, on the front page of its weekend Life and Arts section. I quickly realised it […]

I had not had any articles published for a while and then suddenly four appear in one day. I will upload the full text over the next week or so but meanwhile here are the links: * A spiked article on why Barack Obama loathes the Israeli prime minister.  * A Financial Times feature on […]

I appear in the latest Institute of Ideas podcast discussion the authoritarian implications of the frenzied debate about tax dodging.

This is my latest article for spiked. The sanctimonious war of words against tax dodging embodies a fundamental attack on individual freedom. Although the offensive appears to be aimed mainly at wealthy individuals and multinational corporations, it threatens to undermine liberty for everyone. Economics is not the real focus of the frenzied discussion of tax […]

Although the claim is frequently repeated it is untrue that a debate about economic equality is underway. To those who follow it carefully it should quickly become clear that something else is happening. Take the recent discussion at the World Economic Forum in Davos. A televised debate involving some of the main protagonists helps make […]

The contemporary obsession with the super-rich often combines an intense interest in breathtaking bling with a quiet loathing of those with spectacular wealth. Both ingredients in this peculiar cocktail were on display in BBC2’s recent Meet the Super Rich season of documentaries. Rich, Russian and Living in London focused on the lavish lifestyle of wealthy […]

This is the text of my 4 December feature for the Financial Times There is an apocryphal tale about an exchange between two of America’s most famous novelists on the nature of wealthy individuals. F Scott Fitzgerald, author of The Great Gatsby, is reputed to have said: “The rich are different from you and me.” […]