Jewish World Review May 13, 2014 / 13 Iyar, 5774
First redistribute Vatican wealth
By Cal Thomas
JewishWorldReview.com | I have great respect for the humility displayed by Pope Francis, but in his latest call for the "legitimate" redistribution of wealth, he has it backward. Instead of taking more money from those who have earned it, he should advocate for creating new wealth.
If the money I have earned, saved, invested and spent responsibly to care for myself and my family is confiscated by the state (and goodness knows the state already takes a lot of it), who is going to care for us should I retire or become incapacitated? I can't live on
Time magazine reports that, according to the best guess of bankers, Vatican wealth is between
Charity and philanthropy are better than wealth redistribution because they create a bond between the giver and the receiver, unlike an anonymous government check. These donations also establish an expectation that the receiver has a moral responsibility to use the money or services wisely and be accountable to the giver.
What happens when the giver runs out of money? Will the receiver invest the money he has already been given to build wealth for himself, or will he squander it and eventually end up back where he started? And if the previously poor receiver becomes wealthy, should he then be expected to give his money to the state and resume his previous condition of poverty?
Redistribution, or whatever name you give the practice, is socialism. Socialism often leads to mutually shared poverty.
Poverty has many causes, but there are mainly four: 1) a dictatorial governmental system that thwarts individual initiative and liberty; 2) a religious system that oppresses people, especially women, in the name of an angry deity who is ready to pounce on anyone having pleasurable experiences; 3) the wrong economic system, which stifles growth and discourages risk-taking; 4) Wrong lifestyle choices when it comes to education, sex, marriage and crime.
Redistributing America's poor children from their failing public schools to better ones would improve their long-term prospects, but liberal politicians won't let them escape for fear of losing political contributions from teachers' unions.
In a speech to the heads of major UN agencies meeting in
He's right about that, but removing barriers to the creation of wealth is a better path to elevating the poor than penalizing the wealthy through asset confiscation.
Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.
© 2014 Tribune Content Agency