1996-05-18 - Why the Poor are Mostly Deserving of their Fate

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From: tcmay@got.net (Timothy C. May)
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Message Hash: 0c6be6bcb1e4b1d569e299cb6a8a7dd408a85c4540caac2f00ae99df8888aee6
Message ID: <adc286c5080210044c33@[]>
Reply To: N/A
UTC Datetime: 1996-05-18 09:24:45 UTC
Raw Date: Sat, 18 May 1996 17:24:45 +0800

Raw message

From: tcmay@got.net (Timothy C. May)
Date: Sat, 18 May 1996 17:24:45 +0800
To: cypherpunks@toad.com
Subject: Why the Poor are Mostly Deserving of their Fate
Message-ID: <adc286c5080210044c33@[]>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

At 3:18 AM 5/17/96, snow wrote:
>On Wed, 15 May 1996, Jim McCoy wrote:

>> There are two kinds of libertarians, those who hate the poor and those who
>> don't.  I always seem to meet the former, I am beginning to suspect the
>> latter don't exist.

By the way, I certainly don't "hate the poor," as a class. More on this in
a bit, but I certainly was not raised in a wealthy family, and I started my
working career living in a tiny (and I do mean tiny) studio apartment in
Santa Clara, CA.

>        Hi Mr. McCoy, My name is Petro, and I _am_ a poor libertarian
>(well, sort of a libertarian, I tend to think they are a little short
>sighted, and a little to authoritarian to me)  Many of us ARE poor. We may
>not _like_ being poor, and some of us are working to get out of that
>situation, but most of us don't "hate" the poor. We (well, I) hate people
>with their hands out. This is everyone from poor people who _won't_ try to
>get out of their situation, to Multi-billion dollar corporations that
>recieve government grants for over seas advertising to old people who
>didn't plan for their "golden years"  and expect us to provide the gold.

Agreed. I was a libertarian (and a Libertarian, I guess, as I voted for the
first LP candidate, John Hospers, in 1972) even when I was poor, in
college. (No car, and I declined to attend MIT or Stanford, both of whom
had accepted me, as their costs would've been an unduly-large burden on my

Once working and ensconced in my tiny little studio apartment, I worked my
butt off, working 10 hour days, 6 days a week, and sometimes some 16 hour
days (no overtime). I made it a point to save as much as I could, foregoing
various immediate gratifications that many in my cohort were partaking of.

By the time I'd been working for 6-8 years, things really started to pay
off, financially and professionally. I put the money I'd saved into small
companies I thought would do well...companies like Sun, Apple, Genentech,
and, of course, my own company, Intel.

By the time I'd worked there for 12 years, I'd accumulated enough in
savings and investments to never work again. So I bailed out and have lived
the last 10 years doing as I please. (Still sounds good to me.)

My point? Some of it was luck, some of it was hard work, some of it was my
native abilities. But I saw some of my fellow engineers fail to invest,
fail to save...and they are mostly still working. And of course I saw many
in the "larger community" who spent their paychecks, who saw their earnings
go up their nose (remember, this was the 1970s and 80s), and who found as
many ways as they could to avoid hard work.

An important point is this: it wasn't all "luck." At least not in the sense
of luck at a roulette wheel. In fact, nearly all of my cohorts who worked
hard and invested wisely really did well. (And people starting out can do
just as well, perhaps even faster than my cohort did...look at the 3-10x
increases in stock prices in less than 2 years of so many companies!)

The effects are obvious: some of those who failed to study, prepare, work,
save, and invest are now seeking to use "democracy" to take away the assets
of those who did all these things. Many of them talk about "privilege" and
claim that "white males" got all the benefits, conveniently ignoring that
the same benefits were available to any of the Asians, women, or, indeed,
coloreds, who similarly studied, prepared, worked, saved, and invested.

Some of them now claim that we libertarians "hate the poor," that we lack

I'm tempted to say "Fuck them," but that would be rude. Instead, I'll say
that those who think "the poor" are being victimized by "the rich" should
take a close look at how wealth is actually created.

It is only partly "luck" that is responsible for success. I look at the
vast number of new markets and new fortunes that have been created since I
stopped working, and I am more convinced than ever that anyone who is
willing to work in a field which is in demand and who keeps up with
developments, works hard, shows initiative, etc., will do extremely well.

Sadly, about 60% of the adult population of the U.S. doesn't think this
way, doesn't have "the culture of success," and instead looks to the
government to give them benefits, handouts, and jobs.

These people are headed for the scrap heap. Strong crypto builds walls
against this unruly mob.

--Tim May

Boycott "Big Brother Inside" software!
We got computers, we're tapping phone lines, we know that that ain't allowed.
Timothy C. May              | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,
tcmay@got.net  408-728-0152 | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
W.A.S.T.E.: Corralitos, CA  | knowledge, reputations, information markets,
Licensed Ontologist         | black markets, collapse of governments.
"National borders aren't even speed bumps on the information superhighway."