Peter Buffett, son of billionaire Warren Buffett, is not happy with the philanthropic giants that have decided to save the world.

In an opinion piece for the New York Times, Peter Buffett writes what he has learned about Philanthropic Colonialism:

“People (including me) who had very little knowledge of a particular place would think that they could solve a local problem. Whether it involved farming methods, education practices, job training or business development, over and over I would hear people discuss transplanting what worked in one setting directly into another with little regard for culture, geography or societal norms.”

Now he realizes that philanthropy has become a vehicle to assuage the guilt of the super-rich, who can “give back” instead of actually doing anything to change the structural income inequality that creates the problems the rich want to solve:

“Inside any important philanthropy meeting, you witness heads of state meeting with investment managers and corporate leaders. All are searching for answers with their right hand to problems that others in the room have created with their left. There are plenty of statistics that tell us that inequality is continually rising. At the same time, according to the Urban Institute, the nonprofit sector has been steadily growing. Between 2001 and 2011, the number of nonprofits increased 25 percent. Their growth rate now exceeds that of both the business and government sectors. It’s a massive business, with approximately $316 billion given away in 2012 in the United States alone and more than 9.4 million employed.

Philanthropy has become the “it” vehicle to level the playing field and has generated a growing number of gatherings, workshops and affinity groups.

As more lives and communities are destroyed by the system that creates vast amounts of wealth for the few, the more heroic it sounds to “give back.” It’s what I would call “conscience laundering” — feeling better about accumulating more than any one person could possibly need to live on by sprinkling a little around as an act of charity.

But this just keeps the existing structure of inequality in place. The rich sleep better at night, while others get just enough to keep the pot from boiling over.”

I don’t think that any reader of this blog knows Peter Buffett.

But if you do, please tell him that his father added $30 billion to Bill Gates’ $30 billion, and that this money is being used to privatize American public education and to dismantle the teaching profession.

Tell him this money is being used to tell states that teachers should not be paid more for extra degrees or experience.

Please tell him that this money is being used to impose Bill Gates’ wrong ideas about how teachers should be evaluated.

Please tell him that this money is being used to reduce everyone to a data point.

If we could get just one intelligent billionaire on our side, we could stop the other ones in their tracks.

Why? Because they are doing exactly what Peter Buffett described in this article. Engaging in Philanthropic Colonialism. Imposing their idea of what works in institutions about which they know nothing and where they have little or no experience. Furthermore, they are using “education reform” to claim that poverty doesn’t matter. They are “conscience laundering” and hurting the children of the poor by denying them the very real reforms they need: small classes, experienced teachers, a full curriculum with arts, physical education, and all the other studies that belong in schools, and a genuine national effort to reduce poverty and segregation.