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Economies thrive on hope, not jealousy

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Economies thrive on hope, not jealousy

President of faith-based business consultancy sounds off on the politics of envy.

In light of this week's Census Bureau announcement that the $13 trillion spent in the U.S. on anti-poverty programs has done little for the 14% of Americans in poverty, discussions of "income disparity" re-launched. At the Federalist, Crown President Robert Dickie III unpacked the debate, observing the focus on income inequality misses the point.

"We need to create opportunity and celebrate achievement to inspire the next generation," wrote Dickie. "Economies thrive on hope, not jealousy."

"America's job creators are struggling in this current political season, as they've become a favorite target of those running for office."

He continued: "When President Obama called income inequality 'the defining challenge of our time' a message clearly sent to all job creators and entrepreneurs was this: the American dream no longer means the freedom to exceed and excel based on your skills and dream; instead it is defined as a level of subsistence defined as acceptable by the ranking governmental authority nearest you.

"By choosing to focus on short-term lifestyles rather than long-term opportunity, policies are being created that penalize those who have the greatest potential to create pathways from poverty for others. Their secret weapon? Jobs."      

Dickie wrote: "As an entrepreneur engaged in business education and mentoring, I can report that America's job creators are struggling in this current political season, as they've become a favorite target of those running for office. But America's current configuration of a 'safety net' often ensnares and entangles those down on their luck, creating life-long dependency. We need an 'opportunity ladder' that helps those who have fallen climb to greater heights." 

"It's time to deliberately equip people with vital skills, empowering job creators and allowing people in the free market to have success based on their abilities," notes Dickie. "I've found the hope of a future drives more people than the guarantee of a hand out."

Robert Dickie III is president of Crown Financial Ministries, a non-profit educational organization engaged in career and business planning, and author of the soon-to-be published book, The Leap – Building a Full-time Life in a Part-time World.

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