A new book argues that the giving patterns of today’s wealthy may present challenges to the democratic process.
"Individuals made rich by the tech boom or the financial markets are vowing to give money away at unprecedented levels. But this type of philanthropy creates challenges in a democracy, argues David Callahan, the founder and editor of the website Inside Philanthropy, in his new book, The Givers: Money, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age. The gifts come at a time when government is shrinking, and when, in some cases, philanthropic dollars replace or supplant government functions. That can mean that it’s philanthropists who decide what scientific issues are researched, what types of schools exist in communities, and what initiatives get on ballots..."