Prevención del desastre de la desigualdad

NEW HAVEN – El voluminoso libro El capital en el siglo XXI de Thomas Piketty, del que tanto se ha hablado últimamente, atrajo una tención considerable al problema de la creciente desigualdad económica. Pero no es sólido a la hora de ofrecer soluciones. Como admite el propio Piketty, su propuesta –un impuesto global progresivo al capital (o a la riqueza)- “requeriría un nivel muy elevado y, sin duda, poco realista de cooperación internacional”.

No deberíamos concentrarnos en soluciones rápidas. La preocupación realmente importante para los responsables de las políticas en todas partes es impedir los desastres –es decir, los acontecimientos atípicos que más importan-. Y, como la desigualdad tiende a cambiar lentamente, cualquier desastre probablemente se observe recién después de varias décadas.

El libro de Piketty se explaya profusamente sobre ese desastre –un retorno a niveles de desigualdad nunca vistos desde fines del siglo XIX a principios del siglo XX-. En este escenario, una pequeña minoría se vuelve súper rica –no, en su mayoría, porque sean más inteligentes o trabajen más que cualquier otro, sino porque las fuerzas económicas fundamentales redistribuyen los ingresos caprichosamente.

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