From Field to Plate...


Sunday, April 5, 2015 @ 05:04 AM
posted by admin


“O Ye rich ones on earth! The poor in your midst are My trust; guard ye My trust, and be not intent only on your own ease.”

A preview of the unpublished book A CIVILIZATION WITHOUT A VISION WILL PERISH: AN INDEPENDENT SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH by David Willis at CHAPTER 1: INDIFFERENCE TO POVERTY (Part 96). This blog is a continuation of the review of HOW THE POOR CAN SAVE CAPITALISM: REBUILDING THE PATH TO THE MIDDLE CLASS by John Hope Bryant, published in 2014.

This book is about saving America. All of America. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said that the movement of his day and age was intended to “redeem the soul of America from the triple evils of racism, war, and poverty. Dr. King and my mentor, former UN Ambassador Andrew Young, genuinely thought that we make America better, stronger, more resilient, more valuable, and more valued when the nation has the benefit of everyone rowing in the waters of prosperity, dignity, and human aspiration. By 1968 Dr. King had turned his attention to a Poor People’s campaign that involved and sought to engage the whole of America, every race.

No one has ever tried to make free enterprise and capitalism work for the poor
This book is not about socialism, and it is definitely not about communism. Government has its place in our society, but we must all remember that 92% of all jobs in the United States come from the private sector. I have come to believe that capitalism is a horrible system – except for every other system. And no one has ever tried to make free enterprise and capitalism work for the poor and others left out and left behind in America, at scale.

Belief in oneself
The HOPE Doctrine on Poverty says that there are three things that define poverty and struggle more than any set of financial numbers ever could: self-confidence, self-esteem, and belief in oneself; role models and environment; aspiration and opportunity. Or lack of these things.

We have tossed away the portion of society that we need to save it
As I look for real, sustainable solutions to the poverty and lack of opportunity I see every day during my work at Operation HOPE, I have come to a strange conclusion: We have most likely locked up and thrown away the key to some of the very character traits that are required to stand up a community, create an emerging market and jobs, and grow local economies. We have actually tossed away the portion of society that we need to save it, leaving the elderly, the infirm, the young, broken families, or the traditional job striver to save a faltering community.

America’s most amazing entrepreneurship success stories
America is a grab bag of immigrant vagabonds from the world over, and a majority of her most amazing entrepreneurship success stories are also stories of struggling immigrants. These are the people who produced a country that is now the envy of people all over the world who still want to come here.

Men fail for three reasons
Andrew Young often said to me, “Men fail for three reasons: arrogance, pride, and greed.” All three of these things are rooted in insecurity and fear, and doing the wrong or utterly selfish thing most often happens when fear and insecurity overtake our being, our inner reason. The key to winning is to get over these insecurities and fears, to first conquer ourselves and to learn to become reasonably comfortable in our own skins. But the dangerous other side of this is also true: if I don’t have a purpose in my life, I am going to make your life a living hell.

The most dangerous person in the world is a person with no hope
The poor and the underserved must be given a stake in this thing we call America or I promise you they will tear it up – right before they tear it down. This is not an alarmist statement. The most dangerous person in the world is a person with no hope.

Planting, nurturing, and growing a sustainable middle class
So I am not suggesting that we cultivate the plot of the poor because it is morally right, even though it is, but because it just makes good, sustainable sense. We must do it because it is the only thing left to do that has half a chance of working and of benefiting both the powerful and the dispossessed alike. This book is about saving America and returning her to her original promise, her original founding ideas and ideals. It is about planting, nurturing, and growing a sustainable middle class. It is about creating a new, sustainable business plan that returns this country to its original big, bold, audacious dream. This idea is both utterly liberal and the very definition of conservative at the same time. America is not a country; it is an idea. And we can reimagine it to be anything we like.

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