Klaus Schwab is a German economist and engineer.
He founded the World Economic Forum, the conference where the worldwide elite (Bill Gates, Blackrock, authoritarian governments, and Greta Thunberg) meets up each year in Davos, the luxury Swiss ski station, to talk about poverty and the struggle of the working class.
Schwab is also the author of The Great Reset which came out in June 2020, in the midst of the pandemic.
The book is supposed to give you a glimpse of what the future of human civilization will look like.
I read the book, curious to see what Schwab got right and wrong, and how he viewed the ideal society.
Here are the three major trends of the book.
1. More Surveillance
Today’s world has three characteristics: it is interdependent, it is fast, and it is complex.
So complex in fact that it is beyond our understanding, hence our difficulty to anticipate “Black Swan events”.
This interdependent complexity has made society bigger than the sum of its parts. We are no longer questioning if one event in a part of the world will have consequences on other parts — but how strong this impact will be.
A few examples of this are the 2008 crisis, the 2011 Japan tsunami, or the blockade of the Suez canal. The virus is only an event from the same series.
This interconnectivity is not making society stronger or more resilient, but weaker. Impacts are not isolated when catastrophes hit, but ripple and harm other parts of the world that at first view played no parts in the original event.
As interconnectivity increases, we can expect more of these Black Swan events, and more rippling in the world.
These could be avoided with more surveillance, according to Klaus Schwab.
More biological surveillance to avoid the spreading of new viruses.
More surveillance of people for their own protection.
More surveillance of the world so that we can better anticipate “Black Swan” events.
Surveillance, which will enable people to be safer, will be logically carried out by governments, which will increase in size and volume.
2. More Government
Schwab begins with the following quote:
“Good government is the difference between living and dying”.
He subsequently explains that governments’ size has been decreasing since WWII and that people have been in charge of more and more aspects of their lives.
This has led to countless problems, among which exclusion, social-economic inequality, environmental disaster, and pretty much everything else.
As a result, people started losing faith in governmental institutions that have not been doing a great job.
Governments’ poor track record isn’t because of incompetence or corruption, but because of a lack of power, according to Schwab.
Under the leadership of governments, he believes the lives of citizens would improve.
The social security net would be stronger; society would be more inclusive thanks to laws forcing you to deal with people you don’t want to deal with; the world would be more environmentally friendly with the establishment of “incentives” to encourage you to “consume greener”; corporations would be under state jurisdiction so that “shareholders become stakeholders”.
However, if we want a fairer society, we will have to make sacrifices.
3. More Sacrifice
The virus introduced a range of tools (such as tracing, for example) that could be used to tackle other crises such as exclusion, social-economic inequality, and climate change.
As such, you may soon be asked to make more sacrifices for “the common good”, such as staying home so you don’t use your car.
But it’s not all.
Lack of government has made the rich richer and the poor poorer, as we have already seen.
The only way, according to Schwab, that social-economic inequality can be reversed is with more taxes.
Entrepreneurs, executives, and high-performing employees should be taxed more to help those that don’t have the chance to…work as hard.
Finally, the last way you will be asked to sacrifice yourself for the greater good is through the way you consume.
Conspicuous consumption is negative for the planet, and you simply won’t have the chance to own as many goods and objects as before, even if your contribution to society gave you a salary high enough to buy them.
Your individual consumption will be controlled so as to limit your impact on the environment.
This book is a bad book. It’s awfully written, and the society described is awful too.
It is not only full of historical, economic, and social inaccuracies, but it overtly promotes more taxes and less liberty, presented as “good for the well-being of the people”.
For example, Schwab justifies mass l0ckd0wn$ by the fact that if we hadn’t established them, too many people would have gotten sick and the economy would have collapsed completely.
No words about mental health, physical abuse, or basic human rights. They’re all sacrificed on the altar of economic performances.
His further call for “more government” is downright laudable, hypocritical, or tragically ignorant.
His claim that responsibility increased due to a decrease in government size is another false claim. The size of government didn’t decrease, but increased. We have today more civil servants, more laws that rule society, higher deficits, etc which are a direct cause of the government’s increase in power these last decades.
Some people today, will be taken care of by the government from birth to death (day care, school, university, government job, government pension, government grave).
As Nassim Taleb explains, more government worsens the situation because governments don’t have incentives to be efficient like private companies do.
Governments are not high-achieving organizations, and they are accountable to no one.
The lack of accountability enables governments to lead wars in Irak and Afghanistan, imprison U!ghur$ in [email protected], declare war on Libya, bombard Yemen, invade Syria, seize Crimea, invade Ukraine, fail to prevent energy crises or inflation, and broadly, explains why governments are corrupted, violent, bankrupt, and overall, outrun.
The underfunding of healthcare and of the education system that Schwab denounces are consequences of government management; the lack of jobs is a consequence of government policies; and social-economic inequalities have more to do with government fixing consequences instead of looking for the causes of the problem.
Practices that could genuinely help society are:
- The breakup of monopolies (Amazon)
- Lowering barriers to entrepreneurship
- Increasing access to education
- Limiting junk food and other harmful edible
- Pushing for local consumption
- Decreasing taxes for small businesses.
Klaus Schwab says none of this.
He’d rather you go vegan and eat pineapple flown from Brazil than eat local regenerative-grown meat.
Because a better world is not Klaus Schwab’s intention.
Make no mistakes, he does not fight so you can go to the hospital for free when your stomach hurts.
Schwab does not live in your world. He’s part of the worldwide global elite, the people you make money for in exchange for a meager salary that you’re giving back during the month anyway (through your rent, your food, your gas, and your taxes.)
Overall, the Great Reset is a fascinating book. It shows the elite truly has no respect nor any type of consideration for the people that serve them (you and me.)
It also shows that if you’re not careful and fight for your rights, they will easily be taken away for the sake of “the greater good”.
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