Saturday, January 24, 2015

Davos and Me

It's 40 degrees and raining outside, trapping me inside the house on this Saturday. I don't have many options today, unlike the world's super elite who are gathered at Davos, Switzerland. They invented options.

This annual confab of politicians, CEO's and celebrities never gets old for me. It's called The World Economic Forum, and I love it! Nothing says "irony" like fifty billionaires lecturing me about conspicuous consumption and the evils of capitalism. This year someone actually counted the private jets...1,700. It took that many private, ozone-depleting airplanes to fly the world's richest people to a resort in the Alps to discuss climate change. The same people who lecture the rest of us about sustainable lifestyles are paying 47 bucks for a hamburger. Some billionaire gave a speech informing us that we Americans will have to learn to get by with less in the future. That same billionaire flew to Davos in a private jet with not one but TWO nannies on board.

Still, Davos is the place to see and be seen for the world's .003%. No oligarch would be caught dead anywhere else the third weekend in Janurary. There will be panel discussions on all of the trendiest topics of the day. There will be speeches by the most beautiful people on earth. The wealthiest men and women will have an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of world issues, and show their concern for the 99.997% of the world who can't afford two nannies. There will be cocktail parties and concerts, private screenings of earnest documentaries bemoaning some coming appocholypse. Al Gore, the patron saint of Davos will be there in his exalted position as "conscience of the planet." Bill Clinton always can be depended upon to make an appearance pitching some Global initiative or another, usually surrounded by a bevy of hot snow-bunnies. Bill Gates is essentially the mayor of Davos. He's on practically every panel, and why not? Between he and his wife Melinda, they give
away more money than the rest of the attendees combined, buying them a boatload of indulgence and
a coveted spot in the hierarchy of the most covetous people on the planet.

Meanwhile, we gluttonous Americans are at home be-spoiling the planet with callous disregard for the sustainability of our lifestyles, paying a mere $2.25 for a whopper with cheese at Burger King.