Game Over: How System Inequities Kill Growth

Not all flaws are seen immediately in engineered systems.  Much like the flaw of wealth inequality, it seems as though the lesson is lost from one age to the next.  The lesson we miss, is that when wealth calcifies, it almost certainly signals the decadence and demise of an empire.  As wealth begins to funnel upward, the systems begin to take on critical mass at the top.  And as any engineer will tell you, the consequences of a top heavy structure with weak support leads to collapse—not stability.

One could theorize that all empires must eventually come to an end—and that the lack of foresight by its leadership is a major indicator in the close of an era.   According to the World Bank Global Goals, wealth inequity is among the top areas of focus in a world socialized and organized by post-colonial theory.   According to Oxfam data, less than 1% of the world holds nearly 50 percent of the wealth.

The inherent instability in decadent systems at the close of their reign, one could argue, is unavoidable.  However, it becomes a bit of a travesty when budding nations take on the ideology; causing a failure to launch.  Developing nations are a prime example of new wine in old bottles.  The elite in these economies operate like smaller versions of their Western progenitors.  They suck up funds intended for the larger populace at the expense of development, stability, education and growth.   They send their children to the best schools move abroad and identify more readily with the elite class in their adopted homes than the amassing chaos and poverty back in their home countries.

The error is that, a budding economy needs to circulate wealth as widely as possible.  Without that circulating-wealth, its entrepreneurs, small and medium businesses will not be able to grow or employ the wider populace.  In such economies, no one has enough capital to ably buy from local entrepreneurs at a volume able to grow the business and this makes outside investment the principal, if not only tool entrepreneurs have in such economies to acquire growth. The practice keeps such economies stagnant and unable to acquire the critical mass necessary to take its place on the national stage.  In literal terms, it means game over for both the developing economy and the decadent empire.