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Billionaires Get Together to Save the World!!!

June 24, 2010

Warren Buffett (c/o Getty via This Week)

It’s a little bit fascinating and a little bit intriguing and a whole lot eyebrow-raising, but according to The Observer (which is a sub-division of The Guardian over in the UK), earlier this month, some of the world’s biggest and richest names have gotten together to see what their collective wealth can do to help the world, including Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Oprah Winfrey, Dan Rockefeller, among others.

How terribly fascinating. But can the richest people on earth actually save the planet?

The article says that that “The Good Club” is already sending shockwaves throughout philanthropic and other human-aid/development organizations throughout the world. It’s pretty common knowledge that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation gives regularly to all kinds of charities and non-profit organizations, the question really is: Can these billionaires actually save the world?

Their first meeting took place last year in NYC behind closed doors at the prestigious Rockefeller University, so no one really knows what they talked about, but I would imagine that it involves aiding developing countries and promoting humanitarian endeavors – and South Asian nations determinedly need aid in both areas. This year, the group is advocating a “Giving Pledge” to donate most of their accumulated wealth – summarized nicely in This Week.  People who join the club will be invited to an annual “Great Givers Summit”.

In this article from The Times in the UK, I was especially struck by how the billionaires don’t want this meeting to be seen as some kind of “global cabal,” and that’s the main reason why it wasn’t hugely publicized.  It will be interesting as “The Good Club” pools their collectively brilliant and entrepreneurial minds to see what they can do. The article has a resoundingly optimistic tone – not doubting the good hearts of The Good Club, but I’d like to hear your thoughts.

What do you think? Will these collective group of billionaires be able to help change the world?  Or, do you believe that old adage, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely”, which goes hand in hand with “Money is power?”  Do you think South Asian billionaires will join “The Good Club”?  Do you think South Asian communities will benefit?

6 Comments leave one →
  1. asridhar permalink*
    June 30, 2010 1:12 am

    I heard Ralph Nader on CBC radio about this the other night – I guess he has a new novel out called “Only the Super-rich Can Save Us!”…

  2. dabo jack permalink
    January 6, 2011 9:25 am

    I have to commend the hearts of the billionaires to save the world in the area of much lack,still I must point out that back here in Africa things are rather difficult beyond imagination,believe me,as funds are passed via charities and humanitarian outfits,on another level, it could be passed via certain persons in the forms of jobs,empowerment, etc.to in turn boost others.These activities can be monitored on regular or seldom contacts,thank you

Trackbacks

  1. SAPP Blog Forum: Q&A with Mallika Dutt of Breakthrough « The South Asian Philanthropy Project
  2. Interesting links – political giving, charity jugalbandi, and more « The South Asian Philanthropy Project
  3. The Pledge Heard Around the World « The South Asian Philanthropy Project
  4. Tinkering with the Charitable Deduction and Limited Lifespan Foundations « The South Asian Philanthropy Project

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