An Open Letter to Warren Buffett

2012. július 26. 15:15
Someone who has accomplished as much as you actually have, should not have to carry a massive burden of unearned guilt.

What You Need to Know, Mr. Buffett

I'd like you to know, Mr. Buffett, that what you believe about the nature of capitalism and profit/interest has absolutely no connection with the actual nature of capitalism and profit/interest. Despite all your great accomplishments in the realm of investment, you are as ignorant of these things as the average labor-union member or the average professor of literature.

I hope you are interested in correcting your errors and misconceptions in this vital area. Frankly, I don't see how you can live with yourself in the face of your views about the nature of your economic activity. The fact that, according to your »Giving Pledge«, you plan to give away more than 99 percent of your wealth would not atone for your crimes if the exploitation theory and the doctrine of class warfare were correct. There would still be not only the deadweight loss of everything that you and your family have personally consumed over the years that was stolen from others, from the occasional ice cream soda you reportedly like to your private jet. There would also be the fact that whatever you might now give away would not be any compensation to your actual victims, many of whom have passed away by now or are too old to enjoy it as they might have at the time they earned it and you robbed them, and who would receive nothing at all to the extent that you give your wealth away to completely different people.

If, on the other hand, you succeed in correcting your mistakes in this area, then you will almost certainly be able to regard yourself in a strongly positive light, as a highly productive individual, whose self-interested economic activities and resulting great accumulated wealth have served to improve the lives of others rather than harmed them. Someone who has accomplished as much as you actually have, should not have to carry a massive burden of unearned guilt, as you apparently do.”

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