Tag Archives: Charity

Before and After Welfare Handouts, by Walter E. Williams

Private charity often leads to gratitude and efforts at self-improvement among the recipients. Welfare encourages the opposite. From Walter E. Williams at lewrockwell.com:

Before the massive growth of our welfare state, private charity was the sole option for an individual or family facing insurmountable financial difficulties or other challenges. How do we know that? There is no history of Americans dying on the streets because they could not find food or basic medical assistance. Respecting the biblical commandment to honor thy father and mother, children took care of their elderly or infirm parents. Family members and the local church also helped those who had fallen on hard times.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, charities started playing a major role. In 1887, religious leaders founded the Charity Organization Society, which became the first United Way organization. In 1904, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America started helping at-risk youths reach their full potential. In 1913, the American Cancer Society, dedicated to curing and eliminating cancer, was formed. With their millions of dollars, industrial giants such as Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller created our nation’s first philanthropic organizations.

Generosity has always been a part of the American genome. Alexis de Tocqueville, a French civil servant, made a nine-month visit to our country in 1831 and 1832, ostensibly to study our prisons. Instead, his visit resulted in his writing “Democracy in America,” one of the most influential books about our nation. Tocqueville didn’t use the term “philanthropy,” but he wrote extensively about how Americans love to form all kinds of nongovernmental associations to help one another. These associations include professional, social, civic and other volunteer organizations seeking to serve the public good and improve the quality of human lives. The bottom line is that we Americans are the most generous people in the world, according to the new Almanac of American Philanthropy — something we should be proud of.

To continue reading: Before and After Welfare Handouts

Why we’re done with charity businesses {hint: unsustainable}, by Hoboken411

If businesses charge more to cover their charitable activities, aren’t they requiring customers to pay for those activities? From Hoboken411 at theburningplatform.com:

I can think of really only one of the “charity businesses” from back in the day. And that was Newman’s Own products. Their big selling point was donating all “after tax profits” to charity.

To put that in perspective – Newman’s Own had $600 million in sales last year and donated $30 million to charity (their own charities, naturally.)

That, of course, includes salaries of everyone involved. And whatever “cooked books” accounting. Some would say a 5% “leftover” seems to be a bit low of a profit margin. But then again, companies like Uber are losing $700 million a quarter (or something like that).

But charity businesses is the flavor of today

Fast forward to today. It appears that EVERY OTHER BUSINESS out there has some kind of “charity” link. Take a better look at all the packaging of food, for instance.

“We donate X% of our profits to kids in need!” seems to be the common mantra. You can expect cooked books accounting in all these companies, too.

And then there are companies like TOMS Shoes – who donates a pair of shoes for every pair that is purchased – to someone “in need.”

TOMS is now in jeopardy of going BANKRUPT.

If companies are so charitable – maybe you’re paying too much?

I understand Newman’s (to a degree).

But all these other companies are practically riding that “socially acceptable” coattail to have a positive light shined on them. I mean, who can bash a company for “helping” others?

Well – there are several problems with this whole thing.

I think for one, they build the “cost” of their charity into the price of the goods. Wouldn’t you rather have THE OPTION to pay LESS for the product instead? What if you didn’t like that charity? Or were having money problems yourself? These companies – regardless of their (artificially perceived good intentions) don’t realize that not everyone is so pliable.

To continue reading: Why we’re done with charity businesses {hint: unsustainable}

Be an Educated Donator, from the Lonely Libertarian