The principality of profit

So Time names the hyperrich and megagenerous as its people of the year and that’s a fine and and due honor. But occurs to me that this is one more indication how we are reentering an age of leadership by the very rich: Bloomberg of New York, Corzine of New Jersey, Bush of the White House, Gates and Bono for charity. Of course, the people do band together to give generously — should the millions who gave billions after the tsunami have been the cover subjects, perhaps? And I blather endlessly about the democratic power of this medium you’re touching at the moment. But thanks to many factors — campaign-finance laws, corporate scandal and regulation, the never-ending rise of the power of celebrity — the rich get not only richer but also more powerful. As long as they use that power for good, helping society through service and giving, it’s a good.