Staunton, Oct. 22 – According to the UBS Global Wealth Report, Russia ranks third in the world in terms of income inequality, behind only the United States and South Africa. Such inequality is dangerous because it generates demands for radical means to reduce the differences and those in turn restrict economic growth and social stability, Ilya Grashchenkov says.
The Russian commentator says that some income inequality is useful because it leads people to work harder and more innovatively to rise through the income pyramid, but if differences become too great, it sparks dangerous demands for radical leveling (realtribune.ru/rossii-pora-zadumatsya-nad-preodoleniem-socialnogo-neravenstva-ilya-grashhenkov/).
Those demands in turn can lead to revolts and revolutions which if they succeed can stymie economic growth, Grashchenkov continues. What is needed, he suggests, is a policy which prevents income inequality from becoming so great but does not eliminate it entirely. Coming up with such a balance isn’t easy, but it is something Moscow now must think about.
If it fails to come up with such a program, he says, there is a great danger that there will be another revolution that will bring to power people like the Bolsheviks who will level the playing field to such an extent that growth without increasing repression will be almost impossible.