HotelVitale wrote: fianchetto wrote:
clyde21 wrote: nothing is more comical than those billionaires who call themselves 'philanthropists' while they hoard the vast majority of the wealth, move jobs abroad, kill the middle class and undermine our 'meritocracy' with their nepotism. but hey, he bought apartment buildings in inglewood that the people of inglewood won't be able to afford! what a guy.
you guys should hang out with Kyrie. Woke I tells ya. Philanthropy is a sham!
Fianchetto, none of this is controversial. It's an undeniable fact that the wealthy have gotten MUCH wealthier at the expense of the middle class over the past 40 years; some of them feel guilty about that and some are opposed to it but the vast majority of the mega-wealthy want it to be that way and even believe that's for the good of the world. That's not to say that all philanthropy is fake and calculated, but most of it is leaving that larger structural inequality intact and usually supporting it, and many many large donations are for sort of vanity projects or things that sound like they're doing some good but are ultimately about ego or a personal interest of the person. Fwiw, I work in political advocacy and often have to deal with wealthy donors and their foundations to get community-based stuff funded; there are some rich folks who like to give money away and don't care how it turns out but more of them want control and want it to serve a vision they have.
In this case, Ballmer probably thinks this is doing some good but the project as a whole is about him wanting to make this Clippers arena and the area around it a happening spot, and he's giving the money to community stuff to sort of ease that transition and make everyone feel better about it. Not saying it doesn't come from a genuine place but it's not directly about trying to lift people out of poverty--which would require a much larger amount of time and money. (For example, with that money he could've found ways to return houses that had been foreclosed on by banks in the last decade to long-time homeowners, or he could've put money into acquiring property and landtrusting it so it remains for long-time residents in perpetuity, etc.)
I read things in your post like:
"some of them feel guilty about that and some are opposed to it"
"That's not to say that all philanthropy is fake and calculated"
thinks this is doing some good"
I agree. It's not black and white. But the lazy cynicism in our society is represented in this thread. Immediately, people are looking at the negatives and bashing the guy for being greedy, not knowing anything more than what the articles report.
It's easy to go on an anonymous board and blame the evil rich and completely ignore the good rich. And Ballmer, by all accounts, seems like a good guy.
Fact is, he could've taken that money and put it into better programs. Another fact? He could've put nothing into anything.
Too many people sit on their ass complaining about the status quo. Why don't they go out, work hard, make a million, make another million, and make a difference? Not all of these rich guys got rich due to nepotism -- that's a copout. And there are increasing self made billionaires who do real good in the world. But no, let's call Ballmer and ass and say "philanthropy is a hoax".
I enjoyed your post because it was rational and thought out. The other guys however, are part of the problem.