Uncharitable Rich Should Lose Passports Says Aussie Businessman

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December 22, 2010; Source: ABC Sydney | Dick Smith, a businessman in Australia says, only half jokingly, that he believes that rich people who do not give generously to charity should have their passports rescinded. Smith said the idea first came to him when he was faced with requests for aid from people losing their homes.

He suggested that they write to the well-compensated heads of four major banks for help. Smith wrote to the bank executives suggesting that they pledge to give away at least 20 percent of their income. Only one of them responded, saying that he did give but anonymously.

Disturbed by low charity rates in Australia, Smith clearly is of the opinion that if you give you should do so in a way that can be measured. “It’s just greed,” he suggests, “what they’ll say is ‘we don’t do it publicly’, but I find the ones who say they don’t do it publicly in fact hardly give anything away.”—Ruth McCambridge