|Direct Credits for Everybody by Alfred Lawson|
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Inheritance Will Become Obsolete
To balance ownership of wealth so that distribution of it will be among the greatest numbers and do the most good for everybody, is the logical procedure if humanity would stop clawing itself to pieces in the desperate struggle of each to obtain the largest portion.
Greatest number of owners, for greatest quantity of wealth, for greatest good of everybody, is the real key to economic stability that will unlock the door to general success and continuous prosperity.
It is possible for everybody, working together harmoniously, to create enough wealth for the use of everybody, so that all may live from birth to death, decently and honorably. Those who would teach this cannot be done are enemies of mankind who would continue present day disorder.
A little less selfishness on the part of all of us; a little less jealousy that others may succeed as well as ourselves; a little more big-heartedness in which we want others to enjoy the same luxuries that we do; will go a long ways toward the establishment of a worthy economic system.
One of the worst drawbacks of economic stability and general prosperity is the inheritance scheme whereby one individual can pass over to another, after he is dead, such wealth as he has earned, begged, stolen or inherited.
By this scheme the wealth created by everybody can be passed along from generation to generation to persons that have never done anything toward earning it. And worse, owing to the monstrous interest-paying system, the value of the wealth left by the first collector will multiply itself so many times that it will grow to gigantic proportions and be owned and used by non-producers to keep in bondage real producers, for ever and ever.
In fact, according to the rules of inheritance, one can leave the wealth accumulated to a dog, or a lunatic, and in the course of time, by the aid of the presto-change interest-paying scheme, it will double and quadruple in value, if in money, without the dog or lunatic knowing anything about it.
I question, sometimes, if we are not all lunatics to be willing to live under such crazy conditions.
The trouble is, most people never stop to think that the antics of the people of Nebuchadnezzars days do not fit the people of these days and they continue to practice superannuated customs that should have been put into the grave long ago.
To inherit a large fortune without having done anything for it, is enough to make a lunatic of one, even if not one before. And if it does not actually make a lunatic of him it will certainly do him much harm in many ways.
To take from one the necessity of effort to obtain wealth, one will lack appreciation of it and use it for all sorts of purposes that will soften him, both physically and mentally. He will deteriorate, become lazy and careless, acquire bad habits of various kinds and finally form a general contempt for everybody, including those who gave him the wealth. That not only robs everybody of the wealth that was not rightfully his, or the wealth that he may have honestly produced if he had not inherited it, but also robs the one who inherits the wealth of his self-respect, because those who consume, but do not produce are parasites and cannot respect themselves in the true sense of the term.
The wealth of one generation is not the wealth of a succeeding one. Each generation makes its own wealth, so that a dead man's will is but an instrument to enslave following generations. Constant labor is the only thing that makes wealth last.
For example, father leaves son a factory full of productive machinery. As long as the factory delivers useful products, it is wealth. But to keep a factory in running order to manufacture useful products requires continual labor and the installation of improved machinery. If that is neglected, then in a few years both the building and the machinery, which constituted the wealth left by father to son has lost its value because they are out-of-date and useless. So the wealth inherited by the son is of no value unless he gets those of his own generation to put their labor into it, and thereby replace it entirely with new wealth that the father had nothing to do with.
Therefore the wealth of one generation is valueless to the next generation unless constantly replaced with newer wealth.
Then why should everybody of the next generation be forced to rebuild or re-enforce the useless factory left by father to son, with their labor?
A father, no matter how much love he may have for his son, has no right to expect everybody to support this offspring of his continuously because of the wealth he was permitted to accumulate during his generation. He should be satisfied that he had the use of it during his own life.
Another thing, to give one child a factory to start life with, while another child is forced, by circumstances over which it has no control, to start life with nothing is not giving equal opportunities to everybodys children, which proves that the deal is unfair.
Under Direct Credits for Everybody there will be no reason for inheritance anyway, as all children will be afforded sufficient credit for maintenance and education and at the age of 21 they will start life with equal opportunities for all and special privileges to none.
So when people die, their wealth will be used toward the cost of raising and offering every advantage to all of the nation's children, to enable them to grow up strong and useful. Thus will pass into oblivion inheritance, an ancient custom worn out by time and decay.
And when it is time for the rich man to die, he can do so with the satisfaction and assurance that he will not be forced to crawl through the eye of a needle to get to heaven, but can stand erect before his Maker and honestly say: "To the upkeep and training of all of Your children have I devoted the work of my earthly life."
Yes, and on that occasion, if never before, he will feel, act and be treated like a real man.