Are We Missing the Obvious?
by Will Wilkinson
An online headline proclaims “The ‘Key to Recovery’” — which apparently is rebuilding America’s infrastructure — but then the rest of the article mentions that funds for this have been slashed in the new budget.
What’s so difficult about acknowledging the real key to recovery: some Americans have way too much money and some have way too little. So, spread it around.
The idea of “redistributing wealth” surfaced a while back and was immediately branded as a socialist horror. Politicians who preferred to keep their jobs distanced themselves from the concept pronto, but it is the obvious answer. And there’s nothing radical about it at all, actually. What’s radical is what we already have — a huge gap between the rich and the poor.
Think of it this way. You go to the doctor because you’re overweight. It’s not healthy. You’re not feeling good. He tells you that your body is retaining water and suggests some medication, lifestyle changes, etc. to balance your system.
Communist! What’s he thinking?
He’s thinking about health and he knows the obvious: that every part of your body is connected, as is every American, and every citizen of the world. So, what’s the big deal with redistributing wealth, then? Balance makes a body healthy; it makes a society healthy. And what we’ve got right now is a whole lot of chronic imbalance.
Billions of dollars exist as data entries in computer systems. What good is that doing someone who is starving to death in Idaho? When is this rainy day going to come that everyone is hoarding their wealth for, just in case? It’s pouring today, folks!
Give the money back. All you ultra rich folks, sitting on stagnating fortunes — play Santa Claus and start handing out thousands of dollars, millions of dollars. It’s the best investment you’ll ever make. What a great game it could be! Imagine the joy you would bring to friends in need, to total strangers. And imagine what will happen as those folks begin to spend that money.
That’s right, our economy would improve. Right away! Because you can’t spend what you don’t have and people aren’t spending. If they could, if they did? You’d get your money back, processed through the system. And maybe you’d want to give it away again!
Give it up. Get that money in play. It’s not rocket science and this doesn’t need to be done in any sort of orderly way that requires “regulation.” Chaotic, illogical, spontaneous generosity — what a concept.
I know, people with big bucks don’t visit this site so they won’t read this. Well, you’re reading it. Forward to it someone you know who has a few million to dole out. I bet they’ll be happier sharing it than hoarding it. In fact, it could give them the happiness their wealth has failed to deliver.
I know, it’s a radical idea and completely impractical. No it’s not! It’s common sense. It overturns logic, which has gotten us where we are. Look, even if the blessed recipients waste their found money, it’s still going to get into the economy. Which is better than right now with all that dough kept outside the economy, just rusting away in ledgers somewhere.
Come on, fork it over rich guys. Play this game — be the answer we need. Just don’t send me any; I’m busy distributing the little I’ve got as best I can day by day. If I had millions I’d just be busier.
And, on that day when a single wealthy American chooses to give generously to their brothers and sisters, with no strings attached and not even needing a charitable contribution receipt, grace will descend upon this country, restoring our genuine compassion for one another and lighting the way towards what this country has always been destined to become: a beacon in the world for how people treat each other fairly, for the good of all.
Be the first on your block to save America.
Will Wilkinson has just completed collaborating on Forgiving The Unforgivable, a book that recounts how survivors of the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack forgave their attackers, and is currently launching a global change initiative, Training for 2012. He lives in Ashland, Oregon — where he writes collaboratively on a range of unusual projects that conspire to explode the illusions that imprison us — and can be reached at: [email protected].