Davos is no conspiracy – it is infotainment

John Gapper – FT.com Jan 24, 2013

Greetings from Davos, the annual shindig of world leaders and chief executives in a valley by a Swiss mountain. Or perhaps the site of a global conspiracy of the power elite. Or perhaps the place where a Swiss professor imposes his quaint euro-views on “stakeholder capitalism” on US corporations. Or perhaps one giant cocktail party.

The fact that the World Economic Forum has been going since 1971 and can pull 2,600 professionals away from their desks without knowing precisely why they come is quite an achievement. Any event that can charge SFr22,000 ($23,600) per seat – and up to SFr500,000 for membership – has things to teach rivals.

Quartz, the business news publication, this week unveiled the “confidential” list of Davos attendees, reinforcing the notion that the 0.1 per cent is up to no good. “It allows bankers or people in business to meet and make deals they couldn’t legally do in their offices,” says Richard Saul Wurman, founder of the Ted conferences.

But why travel all the way to Davos to fix prices? Most people here spend their days debating corporate social responsibility and the global economy, and their nights rubbing shoulders with fellow guests over drinks and dinner. The WEF is not a conspiracy; it is infotainment.

Continues …

Comment – June 24, 2013

No doubt having been granted an ‘all-expenses’ trip to the luxury Swiss resort, the writer of the above only confirms what John Swinton, one of the foremost journalists of his day once described journalists as: intellectual prostitutes.
The fact that this appears in the Financial Times – a publication that requires payment for regular visits – only confirms that John Gapper works for a whorehouse.
Still we shouldn’t be too harsh. After all he is obviously enjoying attending an event that costs over US $20,000 with all that goes with it for free. By Gapper’s own admission that includes: “rubbing shoulders with fellow guests over drinks and dinner” at a luxurious Swiss resort.
Who wouldn’t enjoy such on the job perks? But it only underlines John Swinton’s assertion that most journalists are little more than intellectual whores and that John Gapper is a prime example.
In the process Gapper even challenges us to defy logic. What he asks: “can pull 2,600 professionals away from their desks without knowing precisely why” … and … “charge SFr22,000 ($23,600) per seat” to do so?
What indeed?
That is a prime example of journalism as disinformation. So should we believe John Gapper when he describes the meeting at Davos as “infotainment”?
Somehow we think not. After all this comes from a journalist, like most in the corporate media, whose services as a propagandist and persuader are paid for by the very forces that fund the summit at Davos.

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