Random Thoughts 109

Christmas

It is Christmas Eve as I write this blog and I find myself thinking about Christmas and looking back not only on my own memories but the events of this year.


Christmas was a time to be looked forward to not only as a child but in later years, too, when I later had children of my own. The Christmas season began shortly after Thanksgiving and was a time of expectation of the presents Santa would bring, and also a time for thinking about the gifts you wanted to give family and friends. It was also called the season of giving not only because of the gift-giving customs, but a brief time of year when people gave to others, especially those in need, as a Christian gesture. Christ taught that it was more blessed to give than receive and during the Christmas season that mood often prevailed. Even in this day and age we can see this custom still being observed by the news stories about food banks being created in America to give millions of people food.


It made me think that the spirit of giving seems to be missing in certain groups of Americans today. Specifically, the billionaires for the most part seem to be totally devoid of that feeling and are in essence modern-day Scrooges. The remind me of the infamous Robber Barons of the late 19th century in America who amassed great wealth for themselves while those who worked for them were treated very poorly and often cruelly. There was no Christian spirit of giving shown by those wealthy businessmen.


Today’s billionaires are not much different. Bezos, the head of Amazon, is one of the richest men in the world, yet there are stories in the news about the harsh working conditions of Amazon warehouse workers. This is not limited to just those at the top of the world’s richest individuals, but also pertains to other wealthy business owners, too. What we see, and what is being predicted, is the gradual disappearance of the American middle class.


There are increasing voices in some political circles pushing for increased taxes on the rich. That is unlikely to happen as there is an equally large group of those who seek decreases in taxes. What I would like to see, though I doubt that I ever will, is a world in which the owners and management of businesses would share the wealth generated from their businesses with everyone who works in the company right down to the custodians. I don’t mean that everyone should receive equal shares, but I do think that everyone could be paid higher wages if those billionaires were less greedy.


In closing, I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year!

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Professor Emeritus Richard A. Moe teaches high quality English speaking skills.

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駒澤大学名誉教授 モエ・リチャード先生  英会話と英語発音の指導歴45年以上の経験を持つプロフェッショナル

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