Plutocracy is a type of governance under the exclusive control of wealthy people. This concept has existed since the Roman Empire, in which the wealthy had the power to elect administrative officials and come up with new policies. Reich’s arguments illustrate that the wealthy have to exercise their power and influence in a democracy through their private foundations of giving (Reich, 2018). Reich’s discovery model is significant and plutocratic power can play a viable role in a democracy.
Reich notes that allowing philanthropy helps produce the social goods that the government cannot perform on its own. He makes a case for specific private organizations in a democracy that participates in discovery and the intergenerational justices’ activities that are challenging to be undertaken by the state or provided by the market (Reich, 2018). Moreover, Reich argues that private foundations take an active role in policy innovation and securing justice across all generations in society. Private organizations can also help counter presentism effects or the democracy’s systematic and pervasive biasness of favoring presentism, which is among the major liabilities in a democracy.
Furthermore, plutocratic involvement in democracy can contribute to innovative policies in society, such as in education and healthcare. The wealthy can use their resources in funding health and educational programs, which a democratic government fails to provide (Reich, 2018). In addition, philanthropy is a contributor to the building of structures and the capacity of the civil community. A democracy that has strong civil societies generates its social capital and helps in building impartial institutions.
In conclusion, Reich illustrates that just giving depicts how generous an individual is, and it works for the good of societies. The charity’s aim provided by the wealthy can benefit the production of public goods, such as arts, science, and education. When philanthropy is allowed and influenced by law on creating and conducting their operations in what Reich calls discovery can help build liberal democracies.
Reich, R. (2018). Just Giving: Why philanthropy is failing democracy and how it can do better? Princeton University Press.