Wealthy people are not bad people. They’re not the ruthless tyrants we’ve made them out to be. There are many with an impressive philanthropic record. There are many who are able to relate to the impoverished segments of our society because they were once a part of it. Still, when we hear the stories about the Sheldon Adelson’s of the world, we cringe and wonder why a person with virtually everything, is so eager to hurt the poor for the sake of preserving a greater share of their future earnings. For Mr. Adelson, his motives are rooted in his commitment towards the preservation of wealth within his family and the continued relevance of his faith in the modern world. And yet, for the other characters in the realm of affluence and abundance, the theme of preservation of wealth remains a core tenet, while the advancement of free enterprise comes secondary; Charles and David Koch. And yet still, you have the consummate wealth preservationist with Grover Norquist, where a return to the Wild West is an acceptable compromise to secure his position among society’s elite.
Sheldon Adelson maintains an honorable record of philanthropic achievement for the Jewish community. His willingness to give to Jewish causes is indicative of a man who, as a child, was deeply affected by the war on those of Jewish faith. Unfortunately, his ideals are also indicative of a man who, as a child, was deeply affected by periods of extreme economic instability.
Mr. Adelson is famously quoted as having said “Why is it fair that I should be paying a higher percentage of taxes than anyone else?” In and of itself, this statement reveals an incredibly selfish position. But with the understanding of from where this man came, one can no longer trivialize the illusive prison in which this man resides.
Growing up Jewish in the United States of the late 1930s (early 1940s) was an abomination second only to the Jim Crow era blacks. It was in that period that Mr. Adelson’s world view was formed, and with it, his insatiable desire to protect he and his family from hardship; by acquiring and hoarding as much of the world’s wealth as is humanly possible. The tragic and repugnant events for that generation, occurring both globally and locally, were absorbed by and ingrained in adolescent minds, leaving a lasting impression that, to this day, impair many with an inability to connect with the travails of today’s modern day family. Sheldon Adelson is simply a man-child trapped in the horrific events that surrounded his child hood; events that severely impair his judgment of others.
Charles and David Koch, much like their father, are two extraordinarily intelligent men; all three are M.I.T graduates. Their disconnect to the modern day family can only be attributed to their intelligence. Through no fault of their own, they fall short in comprehending how and why most human beings rationalize the irrational. It’s not everyone who has the capacity, or patience, to fully understand causality. In that, most beings return to their instinctive tendencies handed down by the generations of hunter-gatherer societies in human history; living in the moment where a future is neither promised nor guaranteed. The Koch brothers live several steps ahead and base their decisions on individualist principles, whereby they derive their libertarian views and subsequently project those views politically. Where their principles fail is in the inability of others to see so far ahead and to overcome their inherent appetite for despotic leadership. Charles and David Koch, with their wealth of money and knowledge, are limited in their appreciation for the shortcomings of persons of average intelligence and thus are apathetic towards the segments of society who conduct their affairs in ways that can only be characterized as human.
The Harvard educated Grover Norquist is, frankly, a scavenger, as are most lobbyists. His wealth is derived from his ability to infiltrate and manipulate the system for the benefit of other wealth preservationists. Famously quoted for wanting to shrink government down to a size “where we can drown it in the bathtub,” Mr. Norquist refuses to acknowledge the disparate divide between rich and poor that would blossom from a society lacking a government presence. Rather, Mr. Norquist envisions a world of opulence, protected by an army of obedient soldiers whose orders are to safeguard the treasures of their kings and to enforce rules of law upon their fellow countrymen. Where Mr. Norquist fails, is in his ability to comprehend the oppressive means that would be cast upon the less affluent of us, and how such dire straits may lead some (but more realistically most) to invite the opposition from “unfriendly” countries to seize control and invoke a new rule of law upon us and our once great nation.
In their quest to secure their wealth for themselves and for the generations to follow, wealth preservationists lack the patriotism and foresight needed to sustain world dominance. It is their narcissistic and prejudiced judgment that encourages others to alter reality for the sake of their own self interests. Under the guise of nationalism and love of country, they manage to manipulate the many who believe in fair and balanced principles.