Peter Jay

The Price of Civilization by Jeffrey Sachs

Half a century ago J.K. Galbraith’s The Affluent Society changed the political consciousness of a generation in the English- speaking world and beyond. It vividly re-established in the minds of civilised men and women the paradox of private affluence in a sea of public neediness — for which, as Matthew Arnold reminds us, Cato reported by Sallust had a name in his description of ancient Rome: ‘publice egestas, privatim opulentia’ (public poverty, private opulence).

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