mind the gap
“Thirty years ago, the Anglo-American capitalist system was the apartment block everyone in the world admired,” Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild told a gathering of business and political influentials gathered on the 28th floor of Bloomberg LP’s Lexington Avenue office tower on Thursday morning.
“Now, that apartment block has really nice apartments up on top. In the middle, they’re kind of cramped and dowdy, and on the lower floors, they’re underwater. But the worst part of it is—the elevator’s broken.”
The metaphor wasn’t hers (she’d borrowed it from Harvard economist Larry Katz), but the morning was. Wearing a slim-fitting sleeveless dress and lots of gold, Ms. de Rothschild was welcoming guests to the U.S. launch of something called the Henry Jackson Initiative for Inclusive Capitalism. It was less a think tank than a movement, less a movement than a platform for a double-edged idea: That everyone should benefit from gains made by the capitalist system, and that it’s good for capitalists when everybody does.
When The Observer reviewed Chrystia Freeland’s new book on the rise of a new global elite last week, we were struck by the thought that in a world where billionaire capitalists (of whatever flavor: Russian oligarch, high financiers or tech evangelist) exert an outsized influence, it’s hard to change the world without first changing the minds of the men and women at the top.
And so we were interested to learn about the Henry Jackson Initiative for Inclusive Capitalism, a new think tank formed with the intent “to promote a more responsible, sustainable and inclusive capitalist system.”
Did you hear? Former Harvard President Larry Summers recently called the Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss—the two Olympic-rowers who (among other things you should know about them) claim to have invented Facebook—”assholes.” And now they have hit back!
Following the farewell speech of peevish genius Larry Summers, the outgoing chief of the National Economic Council, President Barack Obama got together with billionaire buddies Bill Gates and Warren Buffett to talk about philanthropy and, also, how to fix the horrible economy.
“During the visit, they also discussed ideas Read More
Multiple news outlets are reporting that Roger Altman is in line to replace Larry Summers as head of the Obama administration’s National Economic Council. If this is true, Obama is replacing a controversial, Wall Street – friendly former Clinton staffer with a lower-profile, Wall Street -friendly former Clinton staffer.
The rumored appointment comes at a Read More
Update: The White House has now officially announced that Larry Summers is leaving his position as Director of the National Economic Council and will be returning to Harvard at the end of the year. Here’s a part of President Obama’s statement:
I will always be grateful that at a time of great peril Read More
D. E. Shaw, the hedge fund known for its elaborate (and secretive) statistical trading formulas, is expanding its footprint at 1166 Sixth Avenue, where it currently leases floors four through six.
The fund will now move into floors seven through nine, which insurer Marsh & McLennan, a major landlord in the building, currently subleases from Read More
ALBANY—Attorney General Andrew Cuomo doesn't usually put out a "public schedule" like some other elected figures, but today he did, to let us know he'll be in Washington meeting with the president.
PUBLIC SCHEDULE FOR ATTORNEY GENERAL ANDREW M. CUOMO
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 9, 2009
Attorney General Cuomo is in Washington, D.C.
1:15PM Attends meeting with Read More
Almost from the moment that the financial industry entered its tailspin a year ago, landlords and developers began to sound the warnings that commercial real estate would be the other shoe to drop in the economy. Then early in the Obama administration, regulators threw the real estate industry a bone, expanding a financial rescue program, Read More