Piketty on inequality and Trump

In a piece for The Guardian, Thomas Piketty argues that inequality in the U.S. and the failure of governments to address it are the primary cause of Trump’s victory. He argues that:

The main lesson for Europe and the world is clear: as a matter of urgency, globalization must be fundamentally re-oriented. The main challenges of our times are the rise in inequality and global warming. We must therefore implement international treaties enabling us to respond to these challenges and to promote a model for fair and sustainable development.

Piketty’s claim about inequality seems plausible in part because of how mental distortions seem to be central to the social and political consequences of inequality.

I am increasingly open to the view that the two ideas are related, including through the sense of entitlement that accompanies privilege. The terrifying willingness to impose suffering and death on innocent people around the world and on nature in order to maintain a preferred lifestyle is at the heart of the climate crisis.


Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

One thought on “Piketty on inequality and Trump”

  1. There is no question that poverty and anger are related. Lack of access to education is also a culprit. The protests in Korea and the choice of right-wing dictator types around the world is also a clear sign that our unregulated capitalist system is failing most of us. What I don’t understand is how working class people can believe that person like the new US president can bring them anything better. Perhaps I will be proven wrong. It seems to me that he belongs to the 2% that own all of the wealth. Maybe he will start to share?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *