The Failure of Global Elites—and What You Should Do Next – Ed O’Rourke

Looking back at complex societies around the world through the past few millennia, it’s clear that the failure of elites is nothing new. Indeed, given enough time, elites nearly always fail. They get too greedy, they overestimate their own intelligence, and they discourage people around them from conveying bad news. When they do fail, societies sometimes just descend to a lower level of social organization. People dust themselves off and move on, returning to a simpler village-based way of life. Other times, when crisis comes, elites divide, with factions taking advantage of failure by presenting themselves as problem solvers or avengers. This rarely leads to a peaceful outcome. But it’s a pretty good summary of what’s happening now.

If I were to offer some advice for elites, it would be as follows. It was never going to be easy to do the right thing, and it will be even harder now. Start by telling the truth. You’re going to get blamed anyway. Why not use your position of influence to increase public awareness of what’s really happening and why?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.