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Wealth creation a moral duty - Pope Benedict

(It is a) misunderstanding is that since business depends on profit, and profit depends on self-interest, morality is the enemy, and not the friend, of business.

This mistakes both the moral nature of self-interest and the moral nature of profit. The choice between profit and service is a false one.

All of us, including those in the public sector, work for a profit to provide for ourselves and our families. In doing so we contribute to our society by paying taxes, and by providing our communities with services and products. And we relieve the state from the burden of our care. There is everything moral in that exchange.

In addition, it is clear that the mere redistribution of existing wealth is no long-term answer to the poverty that still besets the three billion people, almost half the world, who live on less than $2.50 a day.

As the Pope said in his recent New Year message on the importance of economic development in creating peace, “The creation of wealth is an inescapable moral duty”. So a wrong response to the credit crunch is to decry business in general, or finance in particular. The creation of wealth is for many in the West both a duty and a pleasure. For many elsewhere it is a pressing necessity.

The investment of capital or labour to earn a reward is one of the bedrocks of creating a civil society. We can celebrate those who take entrepreneurial risks in order to build successful businesses. Read the rest of the post and more from Mats by clicking here.

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posted by Justin Forman | 7.22.2009 - 6:15 AM


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