Wealth, Poverty, and Morality

by SecondRateMind 226 Replies latest jw friends

  • stillin

    Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Give him a poison fish and feed him for a lifetime!

  • truth_b_known

    ...just, fair, equitable...

    Just - from the word "Justice".



    These three words are all synonyms of one another.

    Definition of fair

    1 a : marked by impartiality and honesty : free from self-interest, prejudice, or favoritism a very fair person to do business with

    b (1) : conforming with the established rules : allowed (2) : consonant with merit or importance : "due a fair share"

    c : open to legitimate pursuit, attack, or ridicule - "fair game"

    As a father of 2 boys I have often heard the word "fair" thrown around by my children. If my oldest son goes out to the ice cream truck and purchases a snow cone with his money he earned from doing chores I promise you my youngest son will scream "That's not fair! He gets something from the ice cream truck and I don't."

    That's when I ask -

    Did I buy your brother ice cream and you none or did your brother buy ice cream with his own money he earned?

    Reply - He bought it with his own money.

    That immediately defuses the situation. I also follow with this statement -

    "By the way, the 'fair' in life is found downtown in the fall. You can find it by looking for the giant Ferris Wheel."

    There have always been people with more money than me. This whole "1%" vs "99%" is nothing more than a tiresome attempt to divide people and it fails miserably. To make wealth you have to work. The greater the wealth, the more work.

    Giant, multi-billion dollar corporations were started be people who hustled, had drive, had vision, came up with a plan, raised capital, and then did the hardest thing of all - stayed relevant. If Steve Jobs stopped at making the Apple IIe do you think he would have created one of the most wealthy businesses in the world? If Bill Gates stopped with writing BASIC for the Altair 8800 personal computer would Microsoft be the financial powerhouse it is today?

    Envy drives the whole 1% vs 99%. Envy is not jealousy. Jealousy is 2 or more people who work hard for something and one or more does not receive the reward. Envy is when a person sees someone else able to do something or earn something that they cannot or did not. This makes the person feel inadequate. As a result, they take on the attitude "If I can't have it, no one can." This self loathing is highly destructive.

    Remember when Jesus said to take care of the sick, staring, and poor by petitioning your government to send soldiers to those who have wealth, take that wealth, and give it to those who do not (i.e. taxation and redistribution)? Me neither.

    Keep in mind that Christianity was started by the Roman Empire to pacify the increasing number of impoverished nations they had conquered.

    Also keep in mind that Utopian worlds will never exist due to human nature.

  • SecondRateMind

    OK. Back now. Let me try and put this scurrilous allegation down, once and for all.

    I am not a communist. I find Marx's labour theory of value faulty, and, for that reason, the entire intellectual edifice he constructed in Das Kapital unpersuasive.

    I am not a communist. It is arguable whether Russia, or China, or their satellite states, ever actually implemented communism as envisaged by Marx and Engels. What they did do, was implement a government of the people, by the elite, for the elite. Basic freedoms were denied the people, such as freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, freedom of movement, and freedom of conscience. The entire system was coercive and based on the force of power. Little wonder, then, that the ordinary worker sought to sabotage it's functionality; it was the only option he had to express his dissatisfaction.

    I am not a communist. The fact that I criticise neo-liberal capitalists, who want the same government of the people, by the elite, for the elite, does not make me a communist. The only significant difference I can find between the goals of two systems is that one used the forces of civil and military power to exercise control, and the other uses the forces of economic necessity. Either way, the result is the same. The small people get screwed.

    I am not a communist. What I am is an ordinary Christian, who loves God, and His world, and His children, and is fed up to the back teeth of having his heart broken by the plight of the dispossessed.

    I hope that might clarify matters, a little.

    Best wishes, 2RM.

  • humbled

    Edit; Oops- l didn’t send this morning before went to market. I will send it and see what folks have said in the last several hours.....,

    Xanthippe- good for your daughter and you. Any organization that is able to have the least administrative burden with the best effect is good.

    2RM— we used to have WPA [email protected] 90 years ago. People worked. It wasn’t communism, or socialism. I think we could look and see that there should be work for people that is good work. We could name it something that no one reacted against.


    Okay- saw what was posted. Thinking.

  • Splash

    So once the wealthy have had their money distributed, where's the incentive to take risks, create companies and create jobs? Why would anyone work hard to get rare and valuable skills, or choose to work in dangerous professions?

    Many people would like an easy ride through life, enabling them would burden the country's finances and eventually lead to rampant inflation.

    It's a pipe dream of disaster.

    However much you want it there will never be this utopian dream, least of all at the expense of a system that, while not perfect, still works amazingly well.

    Where do you stop? If I save my $33k each year and then build myself a big house, that would make some cry "unfair". It's just a nonsense. There would be revolution before you controlled people in such a complete way.

  • SecondRateMind

    Splash, I have already addressed pretty much all the points you raise. Either you have not read the thread, or you are misconstruing me. Either way, if you want to make a contribution to the topic, I recommend a little application on your part.

    Best wishes, 2RM

  • SecondRateMind
    ...money of itself has no intrinsic value, is both created and destroyed in various activities.

    Agreed, Shepherdless.

    Your ideal suggests that you are one of those who think all the money on the planet is a finite set amount (as if it was found under a bush somewhere by cavemen, and in circulation ever since).

    But don't blame me for this focus on total wealth. Blame Credit Suisse, who estimated total world wealth in 2017 as $241 trillion. That was the figure I took to calculate an equitable distribution of individual net worth. Maybe Credit Suisse think that cavemen discovered this money?

    Best wishes, 2RM

  • Finkelstein

    Well then 2RM all you have to do to release yourself of your anguish is give to the needy and disadvantaged.

    Since only Christians do this you would be a shining example for all humanity to witness.

  • SecondRateMind

    Finkelstein, I can't help but agree that if all Christians did exactly as Jesus preached, there might be a better world and more Christians, and a better world, and more Christians, etc.

    But I also think that the faith is not so much a destination, as a journey. And on that pilgrim journey, we all progress from different stages at different speeds, according to our inclinations and circumstances.

    Best wishes, 2RM.

  • Finkelstein

    One of the problems with the JWS is that they are instructed and regulated to only give to the WTS. Corporation, out outside charities or helping out the needy and disadvantaged if demeaned and frowned upon..

    Not really true practicing Christians are they ?

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