Letter: Capitalism and wealth: Nothing wrong with spending hard earned money


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  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 11:51 p.m.


    I only know what I read in the texts I've referenced twice now. The Man from Nazareth commanded us to take care of those with less. Commanded us not to judge how they came to have less. Doing so puts you at risk. There is only one justifiable use for the excess you may be blessed with: clothes, food, shelter, care for those with less. I'd suggest Matthew 25 -- the only place in all scripture he gives an exact explanation of what the criteria for final judgment.

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2012 4:07 p.m.

    'We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for, I don’t know'"

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 3:21 p.m.

    @Red Shirt -- I may sound like a media shill, but you prove my point. I suppose it is inconceivable that Obama also works while he is on "vacation." As all presidents do. As I said before, no fact will convince an extreme partisan Republican that there is anything good or even neutral about Obama. The extremist only believes something they hear that is negative. Note that you only mention Bush and Reagan as paragons of virtue. Apparently only Republican presidents work while Democrats just twiddle their thumbs and/or plot and plan to turn the USA into the USSR (or Nazi Germany!)

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 2:56 p.m.

    To "Wonder" you should read more about what Bush and Reagan did when they were "on vacation". The first hand accounts of their staff members have indicated that they were not "on vacation" but were working from home. See Newsbuster's article "Newsweek Defends Obama's Leisure But Mocked Bush's Working Vacations at Texas Ranch". Also see US News article "Bush's Working Holidays: Aides say the president is on the job even while vacationing in Crawford". If that isn't enough for you, you can read "White House to move to Texas for a while" in USA Today. There they describe how Bush turned his ranch into an alternate White House, where he worked during his time away.

    You sound like one of the media shills.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2012 2:05 p.m.

    rE: Owen Heber City, UT
    "Rifleman: convenient of you to leave off the second phrase of my post -- "without judging how they may have ended up that way.""

    If you think the Man of Galilee would have condoned supporting able bodied men and women who think the taxpayers are suckers that owe them a living then you don't know that Man or His teachings.

    Besides, we kicked Him out of schools and public meeting houses and told Him not to come back. The liberals only like to dust Him off and bring Him out when they think it will serve their argument.

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 1:55 p.m.

    @mark -- You are correct, but no list of facts will ever convince a tea partier. There is nothing at all you can say or do to prove something different from what they heard on Fox or from Limbaugh or Beck. Obama is criticized for the kookiest things by far right extremists because there is absolutely nothing he can do that they won't criticize. It's illogical, but that's just the way it is.

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    Sept. 28, 2012 1:15 p.m.

    I agree 100% with the topic of the letter. In an environment of freedom (something that jealous, nutty, leftists democrats are trying to destroy) Romney used lawful business practices and took calculated risks, in an effort to get ahead. Things could have gone the other way for him, but he had the ability to make things work out. Sure he had some help and opportunities handed to him along the way, so what! We all do, just some get bigger help and opportunities.

    In this environment of freedom, I fully support him using his money any way he wants. He can blow it on cars, girls, or food. He can thow it all in the ocean, or give it away to charity, or his kids or his church or your church. He can park it all in offshore accounts if he wants to, I don't care! Not my money.

    He is not his dad, so why should he be expected to be like his dad? Who even thinks his dad would be any different, given today's political environment? I'm not like my father...so what? Move on, grow up, and quite being such hypocrites!

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 12:51 p.m.

    The letter writer mentions the Presidents vacation days.

    A direct comparison places Obama squarely on middle ground of presidential vacation days used. Of the past five presidents, during their first year in office, only two, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton took less time off than Obama. Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush and his son all spent much more time away from the White House than the current occupant. Obama's retreat to Martha's Vinyard in August 2011 sparked a particularly high number of criticisms, however at that point in his presidency he had only taken a total of 61 days off. Compared to that same time in office Ronald Reagan had spent 112 days on vacation and George W Bush had been away for a total of 180 days. Bill Clinton, at 28 days, had the least time off of recent presidents. Reagan held the total vacation day record of 436 until the younger Bush left office with a grand total of 977 days away from Washington, representing 1/3 of his presidency.-“Jetting Around” Obama's Vacation Record, Opensalon, APRIL 13, 2012

  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 9:55 a.m.

    There is nothing wrong with being wealthy, as long as it is earned honestly and honorably.


    You have it right so far, but there is something more, as others have suggested.

    On what do you spend your money?

    A good question is: in what proportions would a public-spiritied person allocate his resources between personal luxuries and self-aggrandizement on one hand and the public weal on the other.

    "Men and women of wealth, use your riches to give employment to the laborer! Take the idle ... and place them on... the areas that await the hand of industry.... embark in enterprises that will give work to the unemployed.... Make others happy and you will be happy yourselves."
    Lorenzo Snow "Teachings" Page 63

    It is not necessary that we have an aristocracy of wealth in this nation, an aristocracy that seems to love a large labor pool that is happy to work for minimum wages or little more, creating a growing gap between the said aristocracy and the said labor pool.

    Such an aristocracy, as with all other aristocracies, tends to be self-perpetuating and of limited sympathies.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 9:36 a.m.

    Rifleman: convenient of you to leave off the second phrase of my post -- "without judging how they may have ended up that way." If you believe the sacred texts Mitt claims to, assuming someone has ended up where they are through "terrible choices" is simply not allowed. In fact will result in you ending up in being judged harshly by the only party in the universe who has that authority.

    Since we're tossing around quotes;

    "Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity, nothing exceeds the criticisms of the habits of the poor by the well housed, the well worn and the well fed." - Herman Melville

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Sept. 28, 2012 8:31 a.m.

    To "LDS Liberal" once again your liberal filters only take in part of the story. Romney hired a business to take care of his lawn. Once he found out that they hired illegal immigrants, he fired that business. See "Romney Explains Record of Hiring Illegal Immigrants as Lawn Keepers" at ABC.

    How is Romney's money sitting idle? He gave $4 million to charity and paid another $3 million in taxes. The rest of his money is in investments. His money is not sitting idle, it is making more money. How else do you get $13 million in investment income?

    Please stop spreading half truths, they are worse than lies.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2012 7:39 a.m.

    Re: Owen Heber City, UT
    "Nothing at all, as long as you spend it to help those who don't have enough ..."

    Supporting those who've made terrible choices in the past and present, and will continue to make them in the future only inables them to continue to be dependent on others.

    As the saying goes, "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Sept. 27, 2012 9:17 p.m.

    Hey guess what Hemlock, people have been working and making a living long before there were wealthy people. Wealth came along with warfare and conquering of land.

    A little history would be good for an awefull lot of people.

    Sure God created the universe but we pay rent to Bob the banker.

    Nobody would work for someone else if they didn't have to. Seeking enough power to able to take advantage of people and never doing any labor and creation is NOT admerable.

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 7:41 p.m.

    Wealthy people, of whom I am not one, spend their money creating jobs for us all. Sending our money to DC only wishes they could do the same.

  • Salsero Provo, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 6:11 p.m.

    RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT

    So the jist of your argument is that wealth allows a person to hire people at below minimum-wage, with no health benefits or paid vacation, to take care of immense properties they they purchased to impress their wealthy friends?

    The whole narrative behind conservative policy appears to be to create more competition among American workers for low-paying jobs so that we don't have to expolit undocumented immigrants.

    By telling low- and middle-income American parents that their children shouldn't aspire to go to college and develop those skills which should give them higher-paying jobs, they should just join this low-wage labor pool to better serve the wealthy elite who are spending their money on huge homes with estate-sized gardens, expensive toys which require maintenance and care, and travel to exclusive locales with amenities made possible by cheap service labor.

    This sounds like the system my ancestors left the old country to come to America. There, a person's life choices was set at birth. If born into poverty, you stayed in poverty so serve the Master and his people. Certainly not aspire to anything better and cause "inconvenience".

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 6:07 p.m.

    Whoa the repubs commenting here sure are in a stir!

    Anything that irritates them is a good thing IMO.

    The righties were wrong about WMDs, nation building, Medicare Part D, tax cuts to grow our economy, NAFTA, etc.

    Our country is so far along, why would we care what repubs think anymore? Their party is so radical and so out of touch with America, they're merely just static.

  • Mad Hatter Provo, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 5:47 p.m.

    Romney was born into wealth. There is a difference between someone who came from very little and achieved success. Romney's wealth is not an issue. The issue is how does he relate to people who don't either come from the world he grew up in or live in the world in which he currently exists. It is a completely different way of looking at the world.

    He just had many, many advantages most Americans can only dream about. Having said that, it is not that amazing that he doesn't have all that much sympathy for the 47% of Americans he denigrated in his Florida talk. The only thing he really was sorry for was that there was a video of him saying what he said.

  • Noodlekaboodle Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 5:41 p.m.

    @JSF(and all of the other posters listing the business Mitt saved)
    I noticed an interesting choice on your list. Clear Chanel Radio. First, Bain bought Clear Chanel in 2007, which is after when Mitt claims he gave up control at Bain. But it is a good example of what private equity firms can do to a company. First they sold off Clear Chanel TV stations and live concert business. (stripping the value out of the company) They also sold almost 500 radio stations after being acquired by Bain. Then they laid off 7% of the workforce, because of the debt acquired due to being bought by a private equity firm. Finally they are facing bankruptcy because of a lack of cash flow due to..... You guessed it, debt. Isn't that ironic?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 4:41 p.m.

    USS Enterprise, UT

    We know that he doesn't mow his own lawn, so there is another person hired to help care for his luxury house.


    As i recall,
    He hired illegal aliens to do it for him.

    His money is "sitting" in foreign banks.
    He's building nothing, he's spending nothing.

    As Brigham Young said,
    Money sitting idle is the devil's.
    Nothing is being bought nor sold, So nothing is being produced.
    It' not in "usuary", so it's not stimulting the economy.

    A millionaire's lavish lifestyle changes little after a certain point,
    after that, he's just "hording" the wealth of this earth and keeping out of the hands of others.

    [Journal of Discources -- Sorry, I'm just leaving work, and do not the complete reference in front of me.]

  • wrz Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 4:25 p.m.


    "He took control of distressed companies, sent jobs to other countries..."

    I don't think so. Here's a partial list of companies Bain either created or saved...

    Burger King, Burlington Coat Factory, Clear Channel Communications, Domino's Pizza, DoubleClick, Dunkin' Donuts, D&M Holdings, Guitar Center, Hospital Corporation of America, Sealy, The Sports Authority, Staples, Toys "R" Us, Warner Music, ertc.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 4:03 p.m.

    The libs are really showing their true colors. They want wealth to be given to the poor, yet fail to recognize that buying luxury items does more to raising the poor out of poverty than just giving them stuff ever will.

    Look at it this way. If Romney buys a 10,000 square foot house, there is no way he can clean it himself. He now will have to hire at least 2 people to clean his house. We know that he doesn't mow his own lawn, so there is another person hired to help care for his luxury house. Now, if you have several wealthy people who all need those services, you now have several people working and providing for their families who otherwise would be waiting for a handout.

    Now, we know that Romney has an 80% success rate in helping businesses grow. How many people are now working at Staples as a direct result of Romney's work?

    For every luxury item purchased, there is a long string of skilled and unskilled labor that has benefitted.

    Liberals would have us treat the poor like puppies and give them what they need, when they just need jobs.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 3:58 p.m.

    Toys R Us
    Clear Channel Radio
    Dunkin Donuts
    Domino's Pizza
    The Weather Channel
    Burger King
    Sealy Mattress
    Baskins & Robbins

    Bain was not just in the business of destroying, this list is a list of some of the companies saved by Bain.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 3:56 p.m.

    Hayden, ID
    People need to work for what they receive because if they don’t they become less than their creator designed them to be.
    11:40 a.m. Sept. 27, 2012

    Agreed! (for once)
    I invite you to read Noodlekaboodle post @ 1:57 p.m. Sept. 27, 2012

    He explains HOW Mitt Romney the venture Capitalist made his wealth very well.

    BTW – It also is the same scam the Money Changers in Jerusalem did 2,000 years ago.
    But low, sell High – Not producing anything.
    FYI – This sort of Money Making (gain) It runs contrary to the Law of the Harvest. It’s more like How Cain made his riches….Corporate Raiders are just Pirates in Suits.

  • Miss Piggie Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 2:22 p.m.

    @LDS Liberal:

    "Mitt Romney has his wealth tucked away in secret Foreign accounts."

    He could have tucked it away in a US bank such as Bear Stearns... but wouldn't have it anymore. I think Romney made a good choice. Far better than I with secret accounts tucked away in the erstwhile Washington Mutual Bank.

    And his 'secret' accounts must not be so secret if you know about them... unless you and your fellow mud-slinging Democrats are just making things up. Which is it?

    We already know more about Mitt Romney’s tax returns than we do about Barack Hussein Obama.

  • Noodlekaboodle Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 1:57 p.m.

    Ok, I don't covet Mitt's wealth. But I don't respect him nearly as much as some other rich men. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and even Mark Zuckerberg are people that I respect much more than Mitt. The reason is because Mitt didn't actually build anything. Gates, Jobs, Zuckerberg etc all built a product (Windows OS, iPod/iPhone/Macbook, Facebook) How did Mitt create his wealth? Well he took out a loan, bought up failing companies stripped the assets and sold the carcass of the company to new investors. He didn't build anything, he was a corporate junk seller.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 27, 2012 12:00 p.m.



    In your comment you point out that Obama says he "sought the communists" on campus but then claim he is hiding his past.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Sept. 27, 2012 11:50 a.m.

    We see people's real character when the do what they will with power. Mitt has always sought and obtained power. But what did he do with it? He took control of distressed companies, sent jobs to other countries where the workers have been made desparate and slashed and burned pensions funds in this country.

    When Mitt had power to run the olympics he sought and spent 1.5 billion dollars of taxpayer money to "fix" the shambles of disorganization. Anyone could fix it with a billion and a half dollars.

    The $1.5 billion in taxpayer dollars that Congress poured into Utah was 1.5 times the amount spent by lawmakers to support all seven Olympic Games held in the U.S. since 1904—combined. How is that so great? How is that not crony capitalism?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 11:49 a.m.

    @ jsf, if you don't know who Obama is after serving as President for four years, all I can say is you need to come out of the cave. All you spout is radical right wing venom meant to tear down, back by nothing whatsoever. Zip. Nada. Right wing conspiracy theories. Want to see Obama's tax returns for 10 years? Easy. Want to see Romney's tax returns for 10 years? Forget it. Here's the deal. Either Harry Reid and his Bain investor source are right that Romney didn't pay, or he had involvement in the Son of Boss tax scam, which Marriott Corp. got caught up in while Romney was on the Board, described as “a truly abusive tax shelter...the most abusive in US history,” or some other issue with the IRS. This would explain why Romney told a close associate that had he known he was gong to be pressed to release his tax returns, he would never have run for President. Unlike some, I don't fall for his "Ah, shucks" act.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    Sept. 27, 2012 11:40 a.m.

    People need to work for what they receive because if they don’t they become less than their creator designed them to be. They waste their God given talents, their freedom (dependency is not freedom) and their dignity. They become just a different kind of slave and never experience much of the joys of life! They don’t live, they just exist.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Sept. 27, 2012 11:25 a.m.

    Everything on Earth belongs to GOD. If you take more than you need, seek riches to inflate yourself and don't care for others you can answer for it.

    It's no different than if I ordered a pizza for my kids and my son claimed the pizza as his own and made my daughter work for her slice.

    What rich man has made even one atom from nothing? Capitalism isn't what we are on Earth to learn. You'd do better to seek other goals in life than a car elevator and dancing horses. Mitt can answer for that himself, but I won't be holding him up as an example as what is good.

    What is good is a person that works with his own mind and hands for a living and not the labors of others less powerfull.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 10:46 a.m.

    OK I LOLed on this one. I hope you will accept my apology. "He takes in $$$ Hundreds of Millions of donors TAX DEDUCTABILE donations to run for President of the United States"

    Two points here:
    1. Political donations are not "TAX DEDUCTIBLE."
    2. Where is Barak Obama getting his $$$ Hundreds of Millions of donors so called TAX DEDUCIBLE donations to run for President?

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 10:34 a.m.

    Esquire your right, "to know the background of the man who would lead the nation." "I do care if he is overly secretive, giving the appearance of hiding something. And I object to pulling down others, particularly when you distort the facts, which are actually well known, public, and part of how we treat the leader of this great country." So ask again who is Barak Obama and what are the influences of his life? His mentor, and his father were communists, but it is ok to ignore these influences. In his book he states he sought the communists on campus, but we are not allowed to peer in to his past. Why are his college transcripts hidden? Why do we not get to vet his history? Please tell us what reason Obama has to hide who he is?

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 27, 2012 9:52 a.m.

    I think most people simply want decent paying jobs that provide them a comfortable living--the ability to provide for the needs of their families. People want a "cushion" between themselves and ending up on the street. They want their children to get a quality education so they can also become self-sufficient. People don't want to worry about a health crisis that will leave them penniless.

    I don't think it is about "coveting" wealth. It's about a system where wealth and power is concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. Its about wealth purchasing power in govt. to benefit themselves.

    If anyone is idolizing and worshipping wealth it is the Republicans. In their minds, the wealthy are to be admired for their intellect and hard work. But that may or may not be true. There's a difference between George Romney and his son.

  • Dave D Pocatello, ID
    Sept. 27, 2012 9:46 a.m.

    Capitalism, just as socialism, communism, or any other economic system that may exist in the world today is flawed. The economic system to which Mitt, and all of us who are LDS should subscribe is the Law of Consecration. Nothing we accumulate in our lives belongs to us. Therefore, we ought to use whatever we have for doing what God wants us to do.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 9:22 a.m.

    I have a question for those who take the time to write a letter to the Deseret News to try to convince others to vote for the Republican candidate.

    Why do you waste your time? Utah is a lock for Mitt Romney. Even if your letter (no matter how misinformed or hyperbolic it is) draws half of President Obama's supporters over to your side, does that make Utah have more than the six electoral college votes that are already going to Mr. Romney?

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 9:06 a.m.

    I see other wealthy persons like Warren Buffet, Bill & Melinda Gates, Jon & Karen Hunstman.

    They have HUGE Foundations dedicated to helping the poor, sick, needy, and the under-priveldged and seek to better Human kind with their wealth.

    They seek to better the world.

    Mitt Romney has his wealth tucked away in secret Foreign accounts.

    Without even touching his OWN wealth -- He takes in $$$ Hundreds of Millions of donors TAX DEDUCTABILE donations to run for President of the United States, and seeks to rule the world.

    If Mitt Romney was using his own "hard earned wealth" and not just using TAX DEDUCTIBLE donations, you might have a point.
    But all I see is another spin doctor rationaizing a flasehood.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 8:59 a.m.

    Mr. Bender's letter misses the point entirely. No one is complaining about the fact that rich folks exist. The complaint is _how_ some people get rich.

    If you can acknowledge that there are important differences between the wealth of a Columbian drug lord and the wealth of a popular novelist, then you must also recognize the importance of distinguishing between the wealth of a person who wrote a valuable piece of computer software from a person who achieved wealth by shipping US jobs overseas and avoiding taxes through Swiss bank accounts and Cayman Islands tax shelters.

    The fact that Mitt Romney, owner of Swiss bank accounts, beligerently refuses to make public more than the last two years of his tax returns, when his own father shared 12 years of returns when he ran for President in 1968, should make Americans deeply skeptical of Mr. Romney's claim to be qualified to lead our nation.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 8:53 a.m.

    Where was Russel's concerns over Presidents spending their own money for vacations when Bush was President?

    Oh yeah, that's right, Russel was silent on this issue during the Bush Administration.

    Consistency is not exactly a common attribute among the right.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 8:42 a.m.

    Somehow money "earned" by sending American jobs overseas doesn't seem like it was earned honestly.

    And what about those foreign bank accounts?

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 8:38 a.m.

    "And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God."-- Matthew 19:24

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    Sept. 27, 2012 8:10 a.m.

    Isn’t coveting other people’s property a sin? How about, “judge not, lest ye be judged”? Our problems are not because of how Romney is spending HIS money but how Obama is spending OUR money! That’s the real problem!

  • Baron Scarpia Logan, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 6:53 a.m.

    Our founding fathers left us an economic system of slavery focused on protecting landowners and forbidding women and minorities the right to own property or vote. It took almost 200 years for our GOVERNMENT to free the slaves and grant civil rights to women and the descendents of slaves and other non-whites. The "free market" didn't build that!

    What we had was a form of "crony capitalism" centered on white men. Today, our capitalistic system still is a "crony" system that favors fossil fuels, low taxes for the wealthy, etc.

    Sadly, too many Americans are disenfranchised or expoilted in this capitalistic system, especially single women with children, who make up the vast majority of the proverty in this nation.

    A government that offers daycare, low cost education, and ther opportunities to uplift the disenfranchised is the cornerstone of a great nation. It's third world nations that ignore the poor or seek ways to marginalize them to reduce the tax burden of the protected classes.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 6:39 a.m.

    Ah, but how do we know that the money was earned honestly and honorably? How he did it is fair for discussion to know the background of the man who would lead the nation. Seeing tax returns is appropriate to know what factors influence the man. His tax rates are relevant to engage in a public discussion to determine future policy. And there are more reasons. I don't care if someone is rich or really how he spends his money. I do care if he is overly secretive, giving the appearance of hiding something. And I object to pulling down others, particularly when you distort the facts, which are actually well known, public, and part of how we treat the leader of this great country. Bush, Reagan and all presidents are treated the same, and so would Romney if he was to win (but he won't).

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 5:56 a.m.

    And here I thought that the only righteous reason for seeking riches was "for the intent to do good--to clothe the naked, and to feed the hungry, and to liberate the captive, and administer relief to the sick and the afflicted." (Jacob 2:19) Silly me. I must have missed the part about multiple McMansions, Cadillacs, car elevators, boats, costly apparel, dancing horses, and accounts in the Caymans and in Swiss banks.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2012 12:31 a.m.

    Nothing at all, as long as you spend it to help those who don't have enough - without judging how they may have ended up that way. That is, if you claim to believe certain sacred texts.