So, I watched "The Founder" today, and had a minor Revelation
In the movie's story, Ray Kroc, the man who is in charge of franchising McDonalds restaurants, is finding himself in a situation where he is doing gangbusters at creating the stores, but is going broke on his contract. He gets help from another fast food executive who examines his books.
One aspect of the business jumps out. The stores need land to operate on, and that money is going to the land-owners who lease the land to the stores. The executive points out to Kroc "You are not in the restaurant business, your are in the real-estate business" and proceeds to show him how he should be the one owning the land, and leasing it to the franchisee, thereby collecting the money direct, and not basing income on a tiny percentage of burgers sold."And", he is told, "since you own the property, you have control over how the operation is run, and if things aren't done the way you want, you can revoke the lease and find someone who will do it the way you want."
And, like a bolt of lightning, it hits me that this is EXACTLY what the WTS did in the past few years. They forgave all the loans to the individual congregations, and instead took total ownership of the buildings and the plots of land they sit on. And, in doing this, they gained better control over the individual congregations. Play it their way, or lose "the lease" As owners of the property, they can tell the "franchisees" how things are done, how the hall must look, the size and look of the sign on the hall, and if it's deemed that a hall "needs" renovation, then, by golly, start those renovation, and pay the increased rent with those contributions you are squeezing out of "the sheep."
So, the WTS has applied the McDonald's approach to their religion, and got out of the nickel and dimes of "hamburgers sold/magazines placed" method, and into the real money making business of real estate.
I knew they were doing all this in an effort to make money, but seeing this in the movie really explained it to me!
I'll have two McWatchtowers and a McAwake please. With a McDip baptism.
Interesting (and looking forward to seeing the movie)
I can totally see it... "I want it my way"...... or....
as the WT says....... "the highway"
Yep, I've made this observation as well. Hilarious, isn't it?
I noticed it when they started flipping Kingdom Halls..
The WBT$ has been at this for decades..
What is surprising is..
How long it took for people to notice..
Don't y'all remember Gene Hackman in Superman:
"Son, stocks may rise and fall, utilities and transportation systems may collapse. People are no damn good, but they will always need land and they will pay through the nose to get it!"
I was saying to a friend a few years ago
While I was studying the history of WTS
This is a Franchise structure
@ Barrold Bonds...
I always remembered it more simply...
..."Land. It's the one thing they're not making any more of."