I heard a shocking statement on NPR (National Public Radio) the other day. OK, well so perhaps it wasn’t that shocking, and yes, this hard core conservative, super-right-wing voter does listen to NPR. What’s the saying about keeping your friends close and your enemies closer?
The reporter said the following as he began his story, and I’ll do my best to quote him exactly, “The next statement I make to open up this story will sound horrible, nevertheless, it is true. There is a company in [can’t remember what European socialist nation he said] that is making money off the Syrian refugees that have come to that country seeking help.” He then went on to report about a company that was providing a service related to housing and making a booming business of it. My immediate thought was, “AANNNNDDDD????? So what’s his point? Wish I’d thought of that.” Were these men criminals? Were they torturing these refugees? Were they gouging them or putting them up in rat infested apartments and then forcing them to pay unjust prices? Where was the tragedy in this story?
I couldn’t find it. The best I could tell in this particular situation, these two business men saw an opportunity to help the refugees with clean, fair-priced housing. In the process they were making a profit so that they could support their own families. Again, I somehow missed the horror that this NPR reporter was exposing. When did it become popular to hate capitalism, free market economy? When did everyone decide that becoming rich was evil? And when did it become such a tragedy to help people be self-sufficient instead of being enslaved by the charity of others and the government.
Seriously, even Bill Gates slammed capitalism a few months back. WHAT? What horse did he fall off and how hard did he hit his head? UH, free market is what made him who he is. He would not be grossly wealthy were it not for capitalism. I’m not a huge Gates fan, but even I can appreciate the significant percentage of money that they give to charitable causes, yet they couldn’t do that if they were poor and had no money. Why do we despise the wealthy?
I say more power to them. I plan to be one of them someday. All the people who have desires to help the poor and needy and do great things to cure the woes of the world could do so much more effectively if they had all the money they needed. I’m not saying that there aren’t greedy, cheats out there; but I bet more often than not you’ll find wealthy people who have a heart to do good in the world instead of take advantage of others.
I’ll conclude with this personal and related story. My son, age 6, has decided he wants to start a business. He decided to write a “book” so I am working with him to self-publish. In the process of making plans to do this he asks me, “Momma, I want to use my book to help the poor (we see lots of homeless people on the streets of our city), but is it ok to make money for myself. too?” After a resounding “YES!” from me he has decided to keep 50% and give 50% to an organization in our city that helps the homeless. Now who knows if his little book will sell at all, but he’s learning a great concept. And think, if his book makes him RICH, then the homeless in our city will have more resources than they had before he became wealthy given his 50/50 split structure. It’s pretty simple math if you ask me.