Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Davos - Where The Elite Decide Our Fate!

Gathering Powerful-brokers And Public Servants?
Again it is that time of year when the rich, the powerful, and the so-called "movers and shakers," migrate to Davos for the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF). This year is particularly special in that it marks the 50th such meeting where the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation engages the foremost business, political, academic and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. This means thousands of business, political and cultural leaders from all over the world will return to the snowy mountains of Switzerland from January 21st, until the 24th to discuss the latest global issues.

Switzerland is famously expensive, and this extends to the WEF and Davos. Participation, of course, is by invitation and the tickets which are around $20,000 are just the tip of the iceberg. Travel generally cost thousands, and sometimes tens of thousands as private and government jets descend on the area. Then there is the cost of lodging, a night in a medium-range hotel is around $800, but such accommodations will not do for many of those attending the event. When we add to it wining, dining, and essential accessories like snow boots, the total bill can quickly exceed $40,000. To our so-called "public servants" getting invited to an all-paid trip to Davos is the golden ring. Yes, this is all very "hoity-toity," and did I mention this is the 50th anniversary of the event?

Davos, Beautiful, Serene, And Very Expensive!
The tiny town of Davos, with a population of just over 11,000 sports a very cold below zero average temperature in January and has been the location of this annual event for decades. Aside from tradition, a major factor elevating this beautiful and serene setting to be chosen as the site hosting this event is security, it is far easier to secure a small town wedged between the mountains than a conference center in a big city. This is very important to the 40 heads of states that are attending. Organizers don't release specific information, but it is estimated that around 5,000 of the finest Swiss troops, police and security personnel will guard the town.

As noted earlier organizers of this premier gala pull out all stops to ensure a safe conference. AP reports the measures include extra vehicle checks and  webcam shutdowns. The Swiss national authorities have restricted the airspace above the event. This year, up to 5,000 troops, fighter jets, ground defense systems, and additional radar have also been authorized as part of the enhanced security. Authorities and organizers are working from a $9 million budget just for the extra security.
  • Security includes surface-to-air missile systems.
  • About 100 of the 2,500 participants get special security coverage.
  • Attendees will be hemmed in by over 46 kilometers of fences.
  • Zurich Airport will contend with about 1,000 additional plane and helicopter takeoffs and landings during the meeting.

Key topics are, how to address the climate and environmental challenges that are harming our ecology and economy. How to transform industries to achieve more sustainable and inclusive business models as new political, economic and social priorities change trade and consumption patterns. How to govern the new technological trends reshaping industry so they benefit business and society. How to adapt to the demographic, social and technological trends reshaping education, employment, and entrepreneurship. In prior years, some of the key issues high on the agenda have been involuntary immigration, extreme weather, and climate change, geopolitical conflict, terrorism, sustainable growth, as well as how robotics and other trends will shape the world in coming years.

As to who attends this exclusive event the gathering often includes nearly everyone who matters in the world of business and often politics. This year President Donald Trump started things off as he spoke from prepared notes. Trump repudiated the hysterical warnings of the "Green New Deal" advocates and decried his impeachment as a "hoax while recounting a list of his administration's economic accomplishments. Trump touted the fact that American unemployment has hit its lowest level in 50 years and that millions of manufacturing jobs have come back to the US due to his tax cuts and pro-business economic stance. During the speech's opening lines, Trump praised the two trade agreements that were finalized last week crediting them with sending US stocks to new all-time highs.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also plans to attend Davos but a U.K. official said Boris Johnson and his ministers won’t attend. The prime minister is branding his administration as “the people’s government,” an image that might be undermined by the sight of him or his team brushing shoulders with the global elite at a Swiss ski resort. Of course, George Soros will be there, as will dozens of other CEOs. This will give them face time with the new ECB President Christine Lagarde, and her successor at the IMF. As usual, those in attendance will be closely followed by a massive group of journalists hoping for interviews and a moment in the spotlight.

Davos Is A Party To Cajole And Influence
Each year as this highfalutin extravaganza unfolds I seem to get a pain in my stomach that some might consider envy, but having attended my share of events I consider it more of a sickening feeling related to the over the top self-importance of many attending. Much of my angst is directed at the politicians and such that have their travel expenses picked up by governments. How ironic that we pay the same clowns that create so many of our problems to gather in luxury to discuss their deeds. I find it so interesting that someone flying across the globe on a private aircraft can sit down and discuss their environmental concerns and how each of us must do more to save the planet.

I should add this giant high dollar bash also includes the parties needed to cajole, influence, and build future connections to insure a good spot at the table in coming events. The topics holding the spotlight often are focused on issues related to wealth, whether it has to do with stock price swings, bonds, or commodities. As usual, many of the people attending have a great deal of interest in keeping the good times rolling whether by pseudo-economics, hocus-pocus, or any other policy that extends the good times. This means bringing in a few social or cultural disrupters or critics. This year high on this list is teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg.

If I sound cynical it could be because I suspect this gathering in Davos is not for our benefit but more for plutocrats like Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and Amazon's Jeff Bezos that desire to "break the world" with their ruthless corporate agendas that continue to monopolize political power in the hands of the globalist elite. To counter this already reassuring words are being cast out over the airwaves to us, the minions of the world, to encourage faith in their wisdom. Oh, what a tangled web those in charge of our fate have woven for us as they rush to sell and bargain away our freedom for power and wealth.

The surge in populism sweeping the Western world indicates something is wrong. I suspect this baffles the global elites who see Davos as an opportunity. These people fail to see that many of us have come to view Davos, as a notorious rendezvous for the world's elite that grant us the honor of paying for their schemes in some way or form. Trump’s two-day jaunt was set to cost US taxpayers at least $3.4 million, according to federal filings but updates have taken bill past $4 million. Last year’s trip, which Trump canceled at the last minute because of a partial government shutdown, was set to hit $3.6 million but still cost around $3.2 million in unused hotel rooms and rental cars. Oh, by the way, did I mention this year marks the 50th anniversary of this event in the Swiss Alps?

No comments:

Post a Comment