Darren Walker on the true costs of denying the reality of inequality.

Published in Quartz

You know Piketty is onto something when everyone’s trying to prove him wrong

By Darren Walker

During the last several weeks, Thomas Piketty’s magisterial Capital in the Twenty-First Century has earned great protestation on the heels of great praise. As the hits keep coming, I am reminded of the experience of another courageous, insightful truth-teller: Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, whose work the Rockefeller Foundation supported when I served there for much of the 2000s.

Many will remember that Pachauri and the IPCC shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former US vice president Al Gore. Earlier that year, the panel’s so-called Fourth Assessment Report was the very first to demonstrate “unequivocally,” in its phrasing, that human activity is warming our world with worsening consequences.

And yet, by 2010 a number of pundits had taken to the talk shows and opinion pages—from the Financial Times to the New York Times—calling for his resignation.

More Information

Read commentary on Piketty from  the Washington Post, Forbes, and Paul Krugman in  the New York Review of Books

Learn more about Darren Walker

In this short clip from Meet the Press, Darren Walker talks about the parallels between inequality and climate change.

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