Last Updated:November 17 @ 07:57 am

What makes corporate profits 'evil?'

By Bobby Eberle

Here's an interesting thought question: Given two companies that both make products and both make a profit, what makes one company's profits "evil" and the other company's profits "cool?" In this particular example, we have ExxonMobil in one corner and Apple in the other. Gasoline vs. computers, iPads, and iPhones. Apple is making money hand over fist, yet where is the outrage. ExxonMobil is making money simply because people worldwide buy so much gasoline. And this is outrageous?

The other day, Fox News had an interesting discussion on the so-called "evil" corporate profits. However, as several commentators noted, the outrage is clearly selective. Apple can put huge mark-ups on their products, yet the public keeps buying, and there is no outrage. ExxonMobil has a much lower mark-up, the public keeps buying, and there is a ton of outrage, particularly generated by Barack Obama and his left-wing followers.

As noted in the video below, ExxonMobil paid $31 billion in taxes last year for an effective tax rate of 42%. This compares to Apple's $8 billion in taxes paid or a 24% tax rate.


As noted in a CNN Money report from two years ago, Apple can build a $500 iPad for about $240.

Based solely on parts and manufacturing, iSuppli estimates that Apple's mark-up ranges from 117% for the low end unit to $147% for the high. The most profitable model would appear to be the mid-range, 3G-ready 32-GB iPad, with a sticker price of $729 and an estimated manufacturing cost of $287.15.

Now, lets compare with ExxonMobil. As noted in the column by Mark Perry of DailyMarkets.com, ExxonMobil averages about 2 cents of profit for each gallon of gasoline sold. Within that same gallon of gasoline, the government (local, state, and federal taxes) take in on average 48.1 cents. So... who is really making money off of gasoline sales?

The main point is that businesses exist for one reason and one reason only: to make a profit. If someone came up with a great idea for a product or service and decided to just give it away for free, then that person does not run a business. He or she runs a charity. Thus, if we are just talking about a business, why is one's profits "evil" while another business's profits aren't?

I love Apple. It's the only computers I've ever owned. Couple my laptop and my desktop iMac with my iPad and iPhone, and you could easily call me an Apple junkie. In addition, anyone who knows me knows that I love to drive and race. Thus, I need gasoline. Lots of it. Do I like paying for either? No. I wish my computer were free along with my gasoline. But that's not the real world.

Obama may blast "big oil" until the cows come home, but it doesn't change the fact that it is a business that sells a product that people buy... just like Apple computers and iPads and iPhones. When the "occupy" movement starts camping out and protesting in front of Apple stores, then give me a call. Until then, I'm going racing!

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30 Comments

  1. RWComment by RW
    March 6, 2012 @ 12:23 pm

    AARRGGHHH, as a former business owner, in several industries, I gotta tell ya… I am SICK of seeing thing like what a product costs to MANUFACTURE versus what it is sold for. What is forgotten is what it costs to get the product, like an Apple product, TO the consumer. THAT includes advertising, storage, inventory (not the same two animals) handling from factory to store then store to consumer (like the people who run the store, and sell the product) and so on. Yet, Bobby, altho the exact same processes to conduct business, are in place for both oil and Apple, and the tax rate is inherently UNEQUAL.

    The world doesn’t run on Apple products. If Apple quit selling any product, more Chinese will be affected by the cease production than Americans (those uniquely American products are made in China and other places in Asia).

    The WORLD runs on oil. From pharmaceuticals to make-up to home heating to running autos and trucks, to growing and harvesting anything in agriculture, if oil ended, we would all end.

    DO NOT troll me with, “Well, there is solar energy that EVERY EVIL REPUBLICAN HATES,” go away. The first patent to turn sunlight to energy was 128 years ago. The technology hasn’t changed much, but the price tag sure has. And it doesn’t work efficiently or practically.

    Yeah, Bobby, I agree, it just isn’t cool to eat and drive as it is to eat and drive while using Apple products, is it?

    Open up drilling, here, now, let the Occupiers go sit out on rigs in the Gulf of Mexico, or on the ice out in the ANWR in Alaska. Let them tweet how bad oil is, while they sit in the middle of a hurricane on the rig or by a rig in the ANWR, with no heating, and no igloo.

    What was that? The Occupiers and the Greenies use no gas or oil? Hey, what do they think the tires on their bicycles are made of, ya really think they are all made from organic rubber, harvested in the heart of the rain forest in South America? How about the grease for the bike chains? Or the seat their useless butts are on riding said green bikes?

    Come on, people, get real, if you all want equality, then make it all equal, from taxes to realizing that in a world of equality, oil is right up there with the self-righteous pigs at the top, playing greenies on their laptops.

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    • newsjunkyComment by newsjunky
      March 6, 2012 @ 2:52 pm

      You’re oh, so right! Without oil we’d starve to death as the trucks, planes, etc., that carry our food would come to a standstill. There are hundreds of products that contain oil in some form or another including the cosmetics that I use on a regular basis. The list is endless. We can do without all the fancy gadgets and trinkets — but we can’t do without oil!

      Profit is good not evil — all within reason of course.

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    • speedy7201Comment by speedy7201
      March 6, 2012 @ 4:32 pm

      I wanted to clear up one statement made, maybe not meant but made. I am a republican and I have NO PROBLEM with Solar, wind or any other power source. As a matter of fact I am trying to find solar panel’s to install right now. What I do have a proble with, is a D-*** Pres who want’s to drop Oil and everything else BEFORE Solar, Wind and everything else become’s affordable for all. Very few of us average people can afford to have a complete Solar system installed. I am starting off small, a few panel’s and batteries to get me through when the power goes off during storm’s and such. I have generator’s but as expesive as gas is b/c of our D-*** Prez, we’ll do what we have to.
      Most businesses start out small and work their way up. However, I’ll use Solyndra as the Prez’s example. They start OFF BIG, they don’t start off in a small building and as they find a way to finance solar or work with the people that can afford it, no, they have to start off with a multi million dollar building and 200 employee’s in a business that does not have a product that people can afford in this economy. For one, what this Prez doesn;t realize, is that IF he had approved the Keystone Pipeline, if he had opened drilling back up in the Gulf, if he had, if he had, if he had—- People would have the money to invest in his GREEN Product’s instead of wasting our tax dollar’s funding the stuff.
      In my opinion, everyone one of his dream factories have closed b/c they tried by starting off to big and they started off to big b/c they had Government MONEY, OUR money.
      I have nothing against Green technology and one day it would be great if every household had a full solar system, but that is a long way off.

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    • superg1Comment by superg1
      March 7, 2012 @ 2:23 am

      Wow, US oil production is the highest it’s been since 2002. Last year, the largest US export was refined fuels, (diesel, gasoline and jet fuel). Maybe you should be questioning why US corporations are selling our gasoline overseas? And yet US oil production is the highest level its been in 10 years. Go look up the facts yourself.
      Go look up Exxon’s 10-k. Look at the money they made shipping your gasoline to foriegn countries while getting tax breaks. Look at the percent of US taxes they paid, less than you do.

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    • DaveComment by Dave
      March 7, 2012 @ 9:45 am

      Superg1,

      I can answer this for you, the answer is simple, the refined fuels were exported to where the most profit can be made. When all you make in America is about $.002 of every gallon of gas, you would find other markets to sell your product in as well.

      Duh!

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    • inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
      March 8, 2012 @ 8:05 am

      Oil is bad,,,Apple is good, only because people can live without Apple but cannot live without oil. It’s simply a secular socialist liberal Control project to prove the “State” is supreme. If you are gay and like young boys you go where the young boys gather, like Boy Scouts, baseball fields,etc. If you enjoy being a control freak, you join the Demcrat party and tax everything that moves, starting with the basic necessites of life required, Like energy and food.

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  2. northernerComment by northerner
    March 6, 2012 @ 4:03 pm

    Right on, RW! Those who are quick to criticize business profits have not been in business, small or large. The raging ignorance of the average citizen is astounding. And a key reason we are in so much financial trouble both nationally and internationally. Cost, plus mark-up still equals retail. Gross sales, minus the costs of doing business, i. e. production, storage, shipping, labor, utilities, insurances etc., still equal net profits. The higher the costs the lower the profits. The lower the profits the less likely a business will survive. And products must be popular and marketable and at a price the consumer will pay. It’s a complex process, no matter the product. Stick the guvmint in the middle of the process and, well. The stench of manure becomes very strong as it hits the spreader. So to speak…

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    • speedy7201Comment by speedy7201
      March 6, 2012 @ 4:42 pm

      What I’ve found, is that those criticizing big buisness and the corperate world are mainly kid’s and slacker’s. The kid’s alway’s believe that they are the backbone, which they are but they never realize that their bosses more then likely started right where they are. When you hear an older person making the same statement’s, it’s to give them an excuse for not making it in the world.
      Lazy kid’s and Slacker’s will alway’s think that business is the problem, b/c they never plan to work, especially these day’s. They want to demonize the business instead of getting off their lazy ***, getting a JOB, KEEING a JOB and actually wanting to learn in that job. If they ever try that, they’ll find they’ll mive up and become that boss they dispised or corporate which they think are out of touch. When that happen;s, all attitude’s change. I know b/c I felt that same way for my first few year’s of work 40 year’s ago.

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  3. Hoyt J. SmithComment by Hoyt J. Smith
    March 6, 2012 @ 4:10 pm

    A few thoughts regarding Bobby Eberle’s article:

    (1) corporations are like people; they have personalities and create different perceptions. Profits alone certainly aren’t evil; not in our capitalist, pro-business society. What creates positive or negative perceptions are how these profits are made, and what is done with them. Apple carries with it the avuncular face of Steve Jobs and connotations of personal freedom. ExxonMobil carries with it, rightly or wrongly, the corpulent face of Lee Raymond and connotations of oil spills and global warming.

    (2) Market elasticity may have something to do with perceptions of good and evil. With Apple, the customer likely feels like he has a choice. He or she can choose from among several options, including pcs and hand held computing devices. With ExxonMobil, the customer probably doesn’t feel like he or she has a choice, other than the savings of a few cents per gallon at the discount filling station on the opposite corner of the intersection. The Apple customer makes a handful of purchases a year (other than i-Tunes), largely with discretionary income; whereas the ExxonMobil customer likely makes a handful of purchases weekly, primarily with a limited budget for transportation expenses.

    (3) The Apple product may actually reduce reliance upon the ExxonMobil product, freeing the consumer from the hassles of an extended commute, gas and parking costs, and of course a larger carbon footprint. Given American society’s affinity for automotive travel and its longstanding love affair with the car, you might think that ExxonMobil would tap into the romance and ride on those coattails; but in fact it is the apple product that more likely dictates the ambiance behind the wheel, while the gasoline that goes into the tank is reduced (more or less) to a little red needle on the dashboard.

    All these factors play into public opinion regarding the profits of the two companies cited. It could be argued that the bottom line for Apple funds newer, more liberating technology which vastly improves the quality of life; while the bottom line for ExxonMobil funds continued global warming while financing unfriendly foreign regimes which suppress their people while largely opposing and resisting western culture and values. These are just a few factors to weigh when making such a comparison.

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    • siquijorislandComment by siquijorisland
      March 7, 2012 @ 1:14 am

      sorry but what global warming, this is 2012 we not long believe this scam.
      Unfortunately this makes you article response invalid as it is based in part on fiction.

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    • DaveComment by Dave
      March 7, 2012 @ 10:02 am

      Talking about perception. Yesterday I suffered through a litany of how business owners are evil and only care about the bottom-line as the business owners keeps the little man down. The aggressor for these comments was a 40+ yr old white guy, self identified as an architect, standing and postulating in a temporary employment office.

      We discussed facts, he shut up, but his opinion was unchanged. Many people have claimed, “You can’t fight stupid.” I disagree, facts and truth destroy perceptions, the final piece of this formula is individual choice. People choose to remain stupid by choosing to believe the Kool-aid is safe.

      Perception and choice drive many of the comments and individual realities experienced in the world. In the theme of this thread I relate the following.

      Point 3, could have been stated better and home shoring and telecommuting continues to rise among many industries and employment positions. Good point.

      Point 2, market elasticity is a wonderful umbrella statement and you are also right here. Discretionary income spending versus mandatory budget expenses will always mean a major debate when economic times are difficult. As the campaign should be stating to Obama, “It IS the economy, stupid.”

      Point 1, yes, perceptions matter, yes perceptions of oil spills and global warming myths abound. But, at the end of the day, who is responsible for perpetrating the myths? Who is responsible for creating the misperceptioms and diluting the public discourse? Let us never forget where these myths, lies, and emotional diatribes come from.

      This remains an interesting world to debate in, especially when troglodytes like the above commentator weigh in. Good job with your commentary.

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  4. geoinsdComment by geoinsd
    March 6, 2012 @ 4:40 pm

    I am just a regular working stiff who also owns stock in various companies: some through retirement accounts, some in stocks and mutual funds. I would be pissed if the the companies in which I own stock don’t try to make the most money they legally can. To do so is their duty to me as a part owner of those companies.

    This is why I was so irritated by Gingrich when he was basically calling Romney a greedy ******* for making what Gingrich considered excessive profits on investments in companies. I expect such talk from Marxists like Obama and the OWS people. I was shocked to hear such talk from a high profile Republican like Gingrich.

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    • speedy7201Comment by speedy7201
      March 6, 2012 @ 4:46 pm

      You are right. I think Gingrich was trying to make everyone think Romney was bad and out of touch with the REAL People because he was rich,however, he forgot that he was talking to Republican’s and all republican’s I know and I believe all cherish the fact that someone succeed’s in life. That is what we are about. Earn your way in life and hopefully you do well, very well is even better.

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  5. joboComment by jlaina
    March 6, 2012 @ 5:33 pm

    Is this guy for real?!? I don’t have a problem with businesses making a profit; however, gasoline prices go up or down because of speculation not because of the product itself. If Apple makes a profit or not it is because of supply and demand for that product. Gasoline profits go up and seldom go down because of the speculators. That’s the difference. That’s what’s wrong with Exxon and all the others. If we drilled for oil in our own country or bought it from Canada rather than Venezuela or the Middle East, gas prices would go down!

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    • siquijorislandComment by siquijorisland
      March 7, 2012 @ 1:18 am

      not based on fact just on cloud dancing.

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  6. steevr1955Comment by steevr1955
    March 6, 2012 @ 5:52 pm

    Wow! Are you stupid or just greedy? Apple I-pod, one-time purchase, and not a necessity. Gasoline a constantly recurring purchase and much more a functional necessity! Duh! Nonetheless, excessive profits from any product or service, just because you can, are no different than any other form of hurting others for selfish gain, just because you can. Deny it all they like, but those who take advantage of others to such excess better damn well hope there is no such thing as universal karma, or get used the idea of coming back as a slug in the next life!

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    • DaveComment by Dave
      March 7, 2012 @ 10:07 am

      Dear troglodyte,

      What is your definition of “Excessive Profits?”

      You charge into the debate unarmed, spew emotional content, and never justify your ambiguous statements with anything more than your personal perception. If I can afford something and someone else cannot, why am I expected to fear “Universal Karma?” If I cannot afford something and someone else through their industry can, I do not hold this against them; why do you? Is this because of jealousy, pride, or envy?

      Please add to the discussion or…

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  7. Mort_fComment by Mort_f
    March 6, 2012 @ 6:51 pm

    The price of gasoline too high? The supply is too low?
    Remember whale oil. When it became a scarce, expensive , commodity, the Rockefellers and others ‘discovered’ our petroleum resources.

    There are alternatives to petroleum based gasoline. Coal conversion is just but one proven technology, especially if the government keeps its hands off of it, and allows it to proceed by private initiative.

    Wind, solar, geo-thermal, hydro .. all have their place. But not for mobile transportation devices. Perhaps, someday, there will be a magic nuclear pill, but I will not hold my breath waiting.

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  8. bfranklinComment by bfranklin
    March 6, 2012 @ 7:05 pm

    What makes one corporation evil over another is pretty simple- what makes one person evil over another. If a corporation is poisoning or killing people or bankrupting them to please their stockholders, even if they are making a lot of money- it is wrong! Even an elementary school student could figure this out. If a company undermines our Constitution and rule of law by using legal bribes (campaign donations, lobbyists, etc), and then have their key people in positions of heading the very agencies that are supposed to regulate their industry- that is wrong, duh!

    If a company is using false scientific studies such as the cigarette companies did for many years, with the CEO’s bold faced lies to Congress under oath- their company is evil!

    If a company is making and selling genetically modified foods, with ZERO independent studies proving their safe, with the leading professors in soil biology showing that the GMO’s make animals, sick, infertile, and subsequent generations completely sterile- and said companies knowingly sell such products to the unsuspecting public- they are evil!

    If any company turns our democratic republic into a fascist state, this is very wrong and treasonous at best. Fascism in its perfect state according to Mussolini, is when the government and corporations merge to control the society.

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    • Mort_fComment by Mort_f
      March 6, 2012 @ 8:17 pm

      Would you perchance describing Gore, Obama, the Greenies?

      For it is not just those that are listed in the financial pages that willfully distort scientific data to further their own goals. Power, control, and personal satisfaction, are just as egrerious as money. At least those who sell for profit are satisfying a need of their customers, even if you would denigrate that ‘need’.

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  9. kjb199Comment by kjb199
    March 7, 2012 @ 7:57 am

    One thing that too many people are confusing is profit vs. profit margin. And this is clearly evident with ExxonMobil. The company has a slim profit margin (certainly slimmer than the different government leeches involved), but because of its scale, it has a large profit. An oil refining business is going to be large in scale because of all the property, plant and equipment associated with it; a company like Apple can conceptually operate out of a single building and satisfy all its production requirements for the world. But I still have no idea how this makes ExxonMobil evil. At least their stockholders are making money from the business; Apple’s stockholders have to become former stockholders to make any money from the business. To me, this makes Apple an evil corporation.

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  10. RWComment by RW
    March 7, 2012 @ 9:06 am

    What, exactly are “excessive profits?” Is it a set dollar amount? A percentage of profit, what, exactly? I was with an acquaintance, I’ve spoken about her before, who was with me shopping at Walmart. She was highly offended that Walmart didn’t offer carry out service. I explained that that is one way Walmart keeps its prices low and it’s profits steady. She put her surgically enhanced nose in the air and snapped, “There should be a limit on how much corporations should be allowed to make.”

    Why?

    Profits from the past year, are what gives this year’s employee raises. The profits from last year pay for increased out put and increased profits for next year’s raises, research and development and so on. People like the above named person has this idea that CEOs and managers have these huge gold lined rooms, filled with hundred dollar bills, where they roll around naked, have dollar orgies, swill expensive champagne and wipe their chins (and nether regions) on yet more hundred dollar bills.

    Without profit, oil companies can’t afford to go out and find more reserves for which to drill. They can’t afford to buy new machinery, without profit. They can’t afford to replace retiring or quitting employees or insure the ones they have.

    I am only using oil companies because of all the anger aimed towards them (with the help of the biggest company in our country…our Federal Gubmmint, that operates in the red with employees that produce nothing, but earn piles of money for passing pieces of paper around).

    In other words, the more profit a company has, the more they have out put, the more people they can hire at good wages, and simply grow, and when a company grows, the economy grows…..

    THAT’S how it is done.

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  11. Mort_fComment by Mort_f
    March 7, 2012 @ 11:12 am

    Earning a profit is the moral obligation of any business. The only time ‘evil’ comes into play is when abusiness becomes a monopoly and restrains trade. but there the antitrust laws come into play.

    If one wishes to discuss ‘evil’, then our non-profits and not-for-profits, do embody ‘evil’. An ‘evil’ that occurs in their circumveting the tax laws, and thereby increasing the tax liabilities of others. If one can assume that laws are enacted that reflect the will of the people, then thse entities often act aginst the people’s interest, using tax-exempt dollars.

    For examples. The American Red Cross pays their director over $500K a year. In addition to that, the director gets free use of transportation, computer equipment and supplies, telephone services, and meals that can be written off as associated with ‘fund-raising’. All items that are in addition to salary, but carry no tax burden. Anybody remeber when there were dollar-a – year men. those who served as a public duty?

    The Congress passed a law prohibiting Federal funds for abortion. No government agency directly funds abortion. yet federal funds are provided to that non-government organization, Planned Parenthood, which directly funds abortion.

    build a better mousetrap, I will pay as much as you ask, and that I can afford for its application. Provide a useful service, and charge whatever the traffic will bear. In either case, I may look at your competitors products and services. That should be the only thing that limits your profit.

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    • RWComment by RW
      March 8, 2012 @ 8:40 am

      Mort, Old Friend, you really hit one of my hot buttons…non-profits. Not ALL are evil, our local hospital system is one of the best around and THE best I’ve ever had to use. It provides over $65 million in charitable medical care, and still operates in the black. Pays good wages and the man in charge came back 11 years ago to clean up a huge, evil mess caused by people who did circumvent laws for personal gain, the fraud was horrible.

      However, I know another non-profit, where it touts itself as women’s health care. The Executive director makes a tidy salary of over $100 grand, plus gets 10% of every grant, federal and otherwise that walks in the door. Their actual fees are higher for women with no insurance than the local doctors. Plus they not only screw up lab results frequently, but charges the women to have the lab results done over. I know one woman who paid 3 times for one pap smear! This non-profit makes so much money, they put what is left over at the end of the year, into another foundation that puts yet more money into the 5 women who run the “foundation,” including the Executive Director.

      The Red Cross is pretty useless, not only with all the money they make do they do little with it, other than most having huge salaries, but they will take photos at disaster sites of people who have lost everything, including their families or even their lives, and post them as if the Red Cross were their saviors, when in fact…the Red Cross had done nothing. March of Dimes is yet another fraud, I give zip to them. Personal experience. The United Way…another huge scam. I give directly. I don’t buy Girl Scout cookies anymore either, the average troop gets roughly 20 cents from each box, and the rest goes to Headquarters and feeds the salary hogs.

      If you want to know if a charity really is one, then before you donate, ask for their tax form 990, they must give it to you on the spot or within ten days. THAT’S how you see what they do with your money.

      The term non-profit only means …the corporation doesn’t pay taxes, they still have a bottom line to meet.

      I oughta know…I used to do fundraising as a hobby, and I owned radio stations. I refused to allow any so-called PSAs on the air without a tax form 990. Funny how the most powerful non-profits refused to give them to me. I could have put ‘em outta biz, but I simply restrained myself and used my better judgement and simply decided the fight wasn’t worth it, and eventually moved.

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  12. Hoyt J. SmithComment by Hoyt J. Smith
    March 7, 2012 @ 4:01 pm

    Two follow-up points I would like to make as part of this discussion:

    (1) Global warming. It is important that many Republicans modify their position on this issue and redefine the debate. It is counterproductive to continue denying climate change in the face of supportive and overwhelming evidence. What is still open for debate is the cause of climate change, its long term impact on society and the economy, and – most importantly — what are the rational, reasonable steps to take in mitigating many of the problems related with it. For Conservatives to simply dismiss climate change as myth or fiction risks ceding the scientific high ground to liberals; and I would rather not do that.

    (2) In business, profit can not be the “be-all and end-all.” More than liberals, conservatives must be aware of and advocate on behalf of a higher morality. Should we, because of our political philosophy, tolerate or even advocate for profit from slavery or pornography? I believe Republicans support the accumulation of personal and corporate wealth, primarily because it advances liberty and the public good in the long run. As much as Republicans love and value profit, even as avowed Capitalists we can not allow it to take precedence over the higher virtues which link us to providence and civilization. Otherwise, what is to keep us from justifying organized crime, as long as the bottom line is fundamentally sound? I hope most of you will appreciate my points.

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    • Mort_fComment by Mort_f
      March 7, 2012 @ 5:52 pm

      Global warming? Or is it global cooling? What is a given scientific fact is that the Earth’s climate is constantly changing. One can provide numbers that show the cycles are 100′s, 1000′s, or evem millions of years. It is only man’s hubris that says we can be the significant factor.

      No business can ever exist operating at a loss. Profit is its only justification for existence. We do make laws defining criminal activities, and hopefully enforce them. But our entire Constitution is predicated on property rights and the enablement of ‘profitable’ trade.

      You cannot separate ‘liberty’ and ‘property rights’. For when the government acts aginst ‘property rights’ it is a direct assault against personal liberty. There is no liberty under socialism, communism, or fascism.

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    • DaveComment by Dave
      March 8, 2012 @ 11:16 am

      Hoyt,

      Point 2 is a bang on definition of corporate responsibility. A responsible corporation will act in the community for the betterment of the community. Not all do, but the ones that do, usually, are better and more productive on the bottom-line than those who do not. More importantly, you are right in the need to define and communicate profit, profits, value, and all the other monetary terms bandied about by the liberal media. The GOP is losing the communication battle al because they refuse to define the terms, counter the diatribes, and defend against vitriolic attacks. Fear is debilitating the GOP.

      Point 1, here I beg to differ. Weather like everything else, changes. Change is a part of life. If a person is scared of the weather, fear will demand a name, an entity to blame, and these items together will bring comfort to the individual. People cling to global warming, global cooling, man caused global climate change, etc… because of the comfort these terms and arguments bring. Redefine the debate, certainly, but do not fall Ito the trap. Change is good, embrace it.

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    • Mort_fComment by Mort_f
      March 8, 2012 @ 12:15 pm

      On point 2. It is not the responsibility of any corporation to work for the ‘betterment of the community’. Rather that may be positive, but a necessary, result. What is important is that a corporation NOT operate to the detriment of the community.They are not the same thing.A parallel in medecine, the Hippocratic oath, ‘Do no harm’.

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  13. Mort_fComment by Mort_f
    March 8, 2012 @ 1:50 pm

    I will thank RW for adding a little ‘meat’ to my previous post, but I will add a little more.

    One of the pillars of my religion is charity, anonymous charity. I religously paid my temple dues for many years. That all stopped when a portion was going to support ‘Rabbis for Obama’. Those funds now go to selected charities that receive an automatic monthly payment via my credit card. Hopefully none of them will dissapoint me.

    Those donations that I can directly control are fine, but then there are the many, that are anethema to me, that exist under ‘Faith based charities’ who are receiving my tax dollars. Please do not tell me that ‘they are doing good works’ my tax dollars are supporting organizations that I would not voluntarily give a plugged nickel to.

    Giving charity is a mitzvah,and separating the wheat from the chaff is difficult. There are organizations that do try to give us insight. I do object to those government, or quasi-government organizations that shame us into giving to an assemblage of charities. They go by different names, United Givers Fund, Combined Federal Campaign, United Way, etc. All have several things in common, an overhead that reduces your desire to help a need, and a list that will include organizations that you would be loathe to contribure to.

    Any organization, be it for profit or not for profit, has an overhead, its cost of doing business. And that is proper, as long as it is reasonable. But you, the contributor, is the only one to determine ‘reasonable’.

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    • RWComment by RW
      March 11, 2012 @ 11:14 am

      Mortf.

      I truly wish that you and illuminatuo lived near me…oh, the great, late into the night discussions we would have! We’d prolly yell, roll our eyes, laugh out loud, in many ways, be on polar opposites of some issues, and still at dawn we would all still be friends, and most likely…be better friends!

      Anonymous giving, in my eyes, is always better. Yet, with my blessing, companies that set aside parts of their profits to donate to local causes are always better than those entities, whether corporate or private, who demand higher taxes on “evil companies” so yet another entity can decide who and what requires/deserves help. DIRECT help is far better than giving to some large organization which has a staff to administer funds to select, smaller organizations.

      I do exempt the Salvation Army on that one…their National Executive Director gets a whopping $36K a year (it may have gone up a bit in the last few years, it was $36K at the time of Katrina) for the administrative headaches that are inherent to any head of an organization. His/her family still has to eat, yanno!

      Rabbis for Obama, indeed. Annoys me as well, no head of a religious group has any business banding together publicly, for any political support of any one. I believe that is an abuse of the title and religious power and religion. DO NOT get me started on my own religion, I’ve been annoyed with my Catholic Church on that front (secular politics) for decades!

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