Why blame the Rich?
Blame the Rich!
Oh how I loath the tall American standing in line in front of me. He who stepped out from his titanium silver Maserati Qauttroporte with its gleaming triton emblem. The afternoon sun is blazing away while this rich mans car reflects rays from the west directly at me; the blinding sheen of furious white light aggravates my contention. As he reaches for his wallet, I notice a Tag Heuer watch drop from behind his French cuffed sleeve. Now I really hate him. I glance back at his car to make sure Jessica Alba doesn’t disembark from it, oh how I would be apoplectic if she did.
The Starbucks barista is gushing over him, using her left index finger to curl long jet black hair. She smiles and giggles in between his simple commands. What a stupefying display of sexual attraction. He turns out of line with a half smirk exiting his polished looks…I think to myself ‘prick.’ Of course as soon as I step to the counter the barista is all business again, courteous, but certainly distracted not by me. I think again ‘you chew toy.’
I consider myself a car aficionado so I take a crack at guessing the model year; usually the wheel rim design signifies specific years so I ask this dashingly putrid man “Is that a 2005 Quattroporte?”
He glances at me with a quick and decisive examination, “why yes it is, are you in to Maserati’s?” he says with a casual smile.
“Well, in a future ownership sort of way, sure. I love their elegant lines, plus the fact that they are rare.” I respond, wondering how long he will humor me in my Marshals bought ensemble.
“Yes, I agree, why put a Mercedes S600 in the driveway when you can have such a beautiful machine for the same price.” He retorts with sincerity.
“Indeed, AMG may be hand built, but you have a Ferrari motor in that sedan.” Okay, where am I going with this?
“That’s right, you have done some homework. What do you do?” he asks me.
Oh great, here comes the yard stick to wrap my knuckles, only his isn’t a yard stick it’s a ponderosa pine. “I am in sales, I manage a team of route reps in Seattle, you?” feeling triumphant in my deflection.
“Oh I dabble in any number of projects. Right now I am producing some radio shows and helping to get a couple of television projects off the ground. I’d like to stay in radio, the flexibility is greater and our consumers are (pause) a little more agreeable.” He says while grabbing for his venti mocha.
“I have sworn off television for several years now, radio is my main intake, what network do you work for?” I inquire.
“I work for the Salem radio network, were more of a conservative outlet, we target a specific audience.” He says with sure conviction. “Are you familiar with us?”
If my body language already didn’t give me away “of course I am familiar with Salem, you guys have two of my most revered radio hosts.”
As the conversation continues on for several more minutes I cannot help thinking how quickly I dismissed this individual solely based on monetary presentation. Even more to my amazement, I find that he works closely with the stations marketing teams in promoting local small businesses and truly interested in what I do. He was running short on time as I would expect, after all, who plans on speaking with a stranger at Starbucks for over ten minutes. He reaches into his breast pocket to fish out a business card. He hands it to me asking to shoot him an email if I were interested in finding out more about what they do. I thank him for his time and mosey out with a grande white chocolate mocha in hand.
The expectations we place upon the rich are mostly disingenuous. The first consequence of looking upon a professional male or female is the mistake of forgetting they are human. In judging character, we must dismiss the possibilities of one being unemployed or a 1% earner. All too often, citizens generalize in terms they are familiar with. Since most of the country lives within 80% of the lower income brackets, they cannot conceptualize life in the 20% bracket. To imagine what it is like earning over $250,000 is to falsely imagine what the people are like who do earn those kinds of incomes.
Hardened blue collar workers think Jeffery Skilling or Dick Fuld (Enron, Leman Brothers) when they look at corporate governance. Digging farther back we might look at the Savings and Loan disaster of the late 1980’s or equate Phillip Moris executives with standard fare. Mostly, those who automatically think the rich are greedy for their success are often jaded and are far removed from the good done by fabulously successful business people. The media doesn’t thrive on feel good events or stories, they lead with chaos, horror, infidelity and murder. To those who naturally blame the rich…”Grow up!”
There is no greater scientific experiment in human history than the American Lottery. With millions of hopefuls playing every week, seldom any who play think about what their burned lottery dollars could do if they invested them every year. There are numerous stories of heart ache and ruin by average Joe American’s, those whom are overnight millionaires, only to end up in bankruptcy a few years down the road. Average American’s give very little credit to the diligence and intellect self made millionaires possess.
“Why Lottery Winners Go Bankrupt.” From Smart Money - http://www.smartmoney.com/invest/stocks/why-lottery-winners-go-bankrupt-1301002181742/
For those of you who lament anti-tax hike supporters, I challenge you to do the math. You who proselytize for forced financial equality, take out your prior year tax statement. Multiply it by one million similar earners and then compare it to the donations and community contributions of the top Fortune 50 companies. I am sure you will see how your dead net tax contribution wont add up to a hill of beans comparatively. Quit looking at what they have and start looking at what you can do.
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation - founded and originally funded by Bill Gates, this foundation is far reaching in community outreach and world wide human investment. Please visit their site and look at their open financial statement.
General Electric – The have five different community outreach programs; education development, health development, international programs, disaster relief programs shared with UNICEF and the Red Cross, plus a matching gift program for volunteer and employee contribution to non-profit organizations. This isn’t hype or fake these are real dollars put out to help communities.
GE was also awarded the #1 company “Best for Vets” employer 2010.
PepsiCo Foundation – after hurricane Katrina, PepsiCo donated $2.1 million for victim relief. PepsiCo has been there for all major natural disaster to help with aid, resources and partnership.
Raytheon Employee Disaster Relief fund - Established in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, the Raytheon Employee Disaster Relief Fund provided a means by which Raytheon employees could respond to the immediate tragedy and help address and ease the suffering of those personally affected. Then there is the Wounded Warrior Project they have committed $2.5 million to.
BNSF Railway – another top five military friendly company, BNSF railway has donated $46 million dollars in contributions since 2000. The BNSF has been engaged with 1,500 community programs in 2009 alone.
“But someone who does not know, and then does something wrong, will be punished only lightly. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.” Luke 12:48
“Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them; but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said unto the wise, give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. But the wise answered, saying, not so; lest there be not enough for us and you but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage; and the door was shut.” Matthew 25:1-4, 7-10.