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Re: You got the money, I got the time

Nov 03, 1998 05:21 PM
by Bart Lidofsky wrote:
> Bart wrote:
> >       The TSA is incorporated in the United States. Do you realize that you
> >are advocating the harrassment of not-for-profits into non-existence, by
> >the way?
> It is polite, and kinda sexy, to back up such accusations with one or two
> reasons which may provide support to your above claim.  In what way, Bart,
> is Doss "advocating the harrassment of not-for-profits into non-existence?"

	You are correct; I should have either made that remark private, or
explained it.

	I really and truly believe that Doss was not making his comments with
the intent of advocating the harrassment of not-for-profits; I was
simply trying to point out to him that he was. Doss has a past history
of asking people to go through tremendous amounts of effort and expense
for no purpose other than the apparent one of satisfying his own
curiousity, and becoming indignant when they won't do it (a case in
point was asking for complete, typed or in computer readable form,
transcripts of TSA Board of Directors' meetings). 

	The rules making not-for-profit's records for public access is to make
it more difficult for them to hide improprieties, not so that people can
have a Sunday afternoon's reading when they're bored. Many smaller
not-for-profits can barely make ends meet; if people started coming in
on a regular basis asking to see their records, the time and expense for
doing so could ruin many of them. Requiring them to post them on the
Internet would require they get computers, Internet accounts, and people
with both financial and computer skills to keep the records posted. This
expense would be prohibitive to most TS Lodges. And denying that the
information is placed in a way to induce harrassment of Lodges is sort
of like the so-called "right-to-lifer's" who post lists of doctors who
perform abortions and their home addresses, calling the doctors
murderers, and then coyly say when a doctor's home is bombed, "We didn't
tell them to bomb the doctor's home".

> >       That's closer to a communist point of view (where the state has the
> >right to all your money, and gives you what it thinks is fair) than the
> >American point of view (where taxes are a fee paid to the government for
> >services rendered).
> And here you are clearly implying that the "American point of view" (are
> Americans the ONLY ones who think this way, Bart?) is the best way. 

	No, I am saying that when talking about the philosophy behind the
American tax, then the American point of view is the valid way to look
at it.

> It is
> debatable whether capitalism truly is a superior form of commerce.  GENUINE
> "communism" really has a benevolent foundation - share and share alike.
> Capitalism can hardly claim that equality is part of its goal; actually
> such a goal is considered rather wussy by many of capitalism's adherents.

	Actually, a true communist system works quite well, when all the
participants are dedicated. The kibbutz system in Israel is a good
example. I had a friend who grew up in a monastery of an order of monks
who have had essentially a communist system for centuries; each monk
worked as hard as he could, and received whatever resources he needed.

	The basis that everybody works as hard as s/he can, and everybody gets
what s/he needs is admirable. The flaw takes place as soon as someone
complains that someone else is not working hard enough, or getting more
than is needed. Then a job must be created whose duties are to determine
that everybody is working as hard as they can and everybody is getting
everything they need. And those with that job become especially prone to
corruption, and the system decays and dies.

	Bart Lidofsky

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