11A072 Compassion, Real & Bogus by Jim Davies, 3/14/2011    

About the first things said by "world leaders" after news broke about the disaster in Japan were that each was moved to provide whatever help was needed, as generously as possible. Who could disagree with words like that?

Not I. They are fine words. One of the many benefits of instant communication of news is that people able to help can do so immediately, sometimes when it's most needed and effective. My problem is not with the words, but the actions behind them. Had those Pols been speaking truthfully, each would have said: "This is terrible. I will at once take some of the loot I have stolen from people in my dominion and send it to your government in a form you can use to distribute such help as you see fit, to those in need. And then I'll steal some more so as to restore my loot pile to its proper size."

They will never say that, but they will always do that. They know no other way. It's what governments do.

Now, it may be that Obama is taking some of his $400,000 a year salary (plus the most lavish expense allowance in history) and donating it to the Red Cross. If so, good for him. But that is not, I think, what he meant when he made the speech. He used the first person plural (we) not the singular (I.)

Even after government has ripped off so much of what we earn, Americans are still extraordinarily generous with charity from what remains. Immediately, charities geared up to help those in distress half way round the world; if you don't know any individual in Japan who needs assistance, you can send money to any of them, though it's a good idea to find out how much of every donated dollar is retained by the charity for administrative costs. A quick Googling suggests first a guide from the Better Business Bureau, since alas there are some charalatans around (but I said that already.) Then one could consider:

and many others - that was just from the first search page. Another to consider is Samaritan's Purse, managed by Franklin Graham (Billy's son) because they have so many associate missionaries on the ground around the world, committed to helping each specific community. I don't normally recommend religious organizations, and do not endorse the religious content of the work they do, but that one has done fine practical work rapidly in many places over many years without heavy advertising outside its network of supporting churches.

When government has vanished, help-now organizations like these will remain and greatly prosper, because their very existence proves that the desire to help one's fellow man is an instinct deeply ingrained in our nature. And, since taxes will not exist, because there will be so much more available from which to give.

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