An 84 year old woman of Zephyrhills, Fla. has a blessing and a challenge. She recently won the $590 million powerball bonanza. She chose to receive nearly $371 million in a lump sum payment. That is her blessing and because of her age it seemed to be the right decision, but how to distribute it must be a challenge. The federal government will require that she pay a 25% tax of the amount she received, so the difficult challenge will be lessened by that much. She showed octogenarian-like wisdom by involving a son, a lawyer, and a financial advisor in making decisions about how to conserve and wisely distribute the money.
Yet the Old Fool questions the wisdom of the whole process. Where did the original $590 million come from? It seems to the Old Fool that there must have been millions of greedy and foolishly hopeful purchasers of tickets who vied for a chance to win. Their greed and foolishness contributed to the millions received by the one who won.
It seems strange to the Old Fool that millions resent the taxes they pay to the government, yet they are enticed to pay a “voluntary tax” in a lottery motivated by the unlikely possibility that they will win a power-ball bonanza. That “lucky” winner alone controls the distribution of millions of dollars. Should it be that way? Would it not be wiser to gladly pay taxes to a government that would wisely and generously distribute it?
The hungry need to be fed; the homeless housed; the infirm given medical attention. Infrastructure needs to be repaired; the ravages of war overcome. The alien should be treated fairly. So should all people have what they need wherever they are, whatever their color and tongue, at whatever cost. When we all pull together it can be done. No one needs to be poor and no one must be rich among us. It will take time, but the whole earth will receive a bonanza when there is peace because good will abides. No octogenarian deserves more than she needs; no infant deserves less.
So says the Old Fool!