- The way things are is not the way they have to be. Our economy, our taxes, and our universities can all be reinvented to make real innovation and creativity pay off. “We do not have to wait patiently for slow cultural change,” the maverick economist William Baumol challenged more than 20 years ago. We don’t have to wait until gambling with other people’s money is no longer profitable; until sanitation workers, police agents, and nurses earn a decent wage; and until math whizzes once again start dreaming of building colonies on Mars instead of starting their own hedge funds.
- In the end, it’s not the market or technology that decides what has real value, but society. If we want this century to be one in which all of us get richer, then we’ll need to free ourselves of the dogma that all work is meaningful. And, while we’re at it, let’s also get rid of the fallacy that a higher salary is automatically a reflection of societal value.
- Then we might realize that in terms of value creation, it just doesn’t pay to be a banker.
- This essay is adapted from Utopia for Realists1: The Case for a Universal Basic Income, Open Borders, and a 15-Hour Workweek by Rutger Bregman.
- Utopia for Realists originated on The Correspondent, the ad-free journalism platform that serves as an antidote to the daily news grind.
- I’m assuming this is the same book as "Bregman (Rutger) - Utopia for Realists: And How We Can Get There". Maybe the US edition?
- And I assume it’s based on Chapter 7: Why It Doesn’t Pay To Be A Banker.
- Of course, he’s referring to investment bankers and their hi-tech support staff. For most banking staff, it doesn’t pay (particularly well) to be a banker in the traditional meaning of the words.
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- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
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