Sunday, January 28, 2007

Saturday in Davos means protesters

Over the five years I've attended the WEF, the level of protesting has gone way down. I like to think that inviting social entrepreneurs and other representatives of wider society has played a role in this. Of course, the issues are different and the U.S. presence seems lower.
Uli the protester wearing a placard standing on a snowy street

I did run into a nice protester on the street. Uli was protesting against the Swiss banks taking five times more money in from the developing world than it puts back out. His direct concern was about corrupt elites that stash their ill-gotten gains in Switzerland. He was advocating for legal changes that would allow more transparency in such cases and permit countries to recover looted assets. We had quite a pleasant chat.

Of course, not all of the interactions were pleasant. One night after a party, one of my fellow social entrepreneurs got hit in the head by a snowball thrown by some punks shouting slogans. However, my buddy felt it was just drunk kids acting up rather than a political act!

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