King Midas Story, Then as Now, Lacks Happy Ending: This Society Is Taking on More of the Characteristics of So-Called Underdeveloped Countries; an Ever-Widening Gap between a Growing Class of Have-Nots

National Catholic Reporter, March 1, 1996 | Go to article overview

King Midas Story, Then as Now, Lacks Happy Ending: This Society Is Taking on More of the Characteristics of So-Called Underdeveloped Countries; an Ever-Widening Gap between a Growing Class of Have-Nots


The Midas myth is an allegory for our times. We are witnessing a rapid and accelerating concentration of wealth. For those few who have the Midas touch, everything is turning to gold. What they apparently refuse to recognize is the grim reality of tire lesson of the myth. You cannot eat gold. Once the process reaches its logical conclusion, all that is left is a mountain of worthless metal.

The process is occurring equally at the world and national levels. Fr. Xabier Gorostiaga, rector of the Central American University in Nicaragua and Latin America's foremost economist, says we are living in a champagne-glass civilization in which 20 percent of the world's inhabitants own 83 percent of global income, while 60 percent survive with only 6 percent of the income.

The concentration of knowledge is even higher, with 10 percent controlling 90 percent of the research capital at the top universities.

The gap is not only enormous. It grows constantly wider. A recent U.N. report on development reveals that the breach between the rich countries (the North) and the poor countries (the South) has widened from a ratio of 1-to-30 in the 1960s to 1-to-150 in 1992. During that same period, the share of world trade enjoyed by 80 percent of humankind fell from 28 percent to 18 percent.

The debt owed by the South to the North multiplied 14 times to the unimaginable total of $1.4 trillion. so that today poor nations spend. on average, $43 per person annually on debt service, while they can find only $35 per person for health and education combined.

What has happened at the world level has similarly happened at the national level. Economist John Kenneth has described the process for the United States in A Journey Through Economic Time (Houghton Mifflin, 1994). This society is taking on more of the characteristics of so-called underdeveloped countries: an ever-widening gap between a growing class of have-nots, not only economically but to an increasing extent physically segregated from the dwindling number of beneficiaries of the system.

All of this, of course, is not just happenstance. It follows inexorably from the world "order" imposed by the industrialized nations of the North. The primary instruments of this control are the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, which are controlled by the Group of Seven industrialized nations. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

King Midas Story, Then as Now, Lacks Happy Ending: This Society Is Taking on More of the Characteristics of So-Called Underdeveloped Countries; an Ever-Widening Gap between a Growing Class of Have-Nots
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.