RICH MAN, POOR MAN

27 June 2009

Satur Sulit

it is government’s work
to make wealthy the nation
the rich who control it
are to blame for the failure

the poor are not poor
because they gamble or drink
or have too many children
or are indolent as they say

the rich are not rich because
they don’t take risks, don’t indulge
or intercourse less
or work harder for their pay

the poor are poor because
the rich do not believe
what democracy claims
that the poor deserve the same

the rich keep them poor
because they are afraid
that the poor will outwit them
and show them the door

the poor are poor because
the rich are, well, dumb
and haven’t the faintest
how a country is run

the rich are rich
not because they deserve it
but are trapped by their money
and there is justice in this:

the poor are poor only
in what money can buy
but richer than rich
in the graces of paradise

it is truly the poor
who inherit the earth
while all money can buy
is a holiday there.

8 Responses to RICH MAN, POOR MAN

  1. June 29, 2009 at 8:19 am
    jun

    we romanticize too much, the situation of the poor. that is why the poor will always be poor and the rich always rich.

    I have this crazy idea that it is actually the rich who is feeding poor the crazy notion that being poor is the fault of no one save the government.

    To be or not to be – being poor is a choice. Poor can be a temporary condition, indolence is not.

  2. June 29, 2009 at 11:14 am
    GabbyD

    i gotta ask, why are the rich, wealthy?

  3. June 29, 2009 at 5:25 pm
    satur sulit

    @gabbyd: the quick answer is because they know how and have the capital, which locks out 90% of the people from the word go.

    a more tedious answer has to do with how our country is locked into a colonial system that promotes and aggrandizes the accumulation of private wealth rather than of public wealth, giving rise to the rich-poor divide

  4. June 30, 2009 at 10:51 am
    GabbyD

    @satur

    so, to quote your poem “they don’t deserve it” even tho they “know how” and “have the capital”?

    but if they know stuff and have capital, then they do deserve it, right?

    what do you mean by “deserve it”?

  5. June 30, 2009 at 1:45 pm
    satur sulit

    hehe, down to the nity gritty, eh.

    in three words, “level playing field”

    any wealth (power, office…) not derived from a level playing field is undeserved.

  6. June 30, 2009 at 1:47 pm
    jojie umali-riyadh

    To gabby: The law of average says “property begets property” so the rich gets richer, accumulating private wealth gravitating to the center of power. as to public wealth or the wealthof nation, God has blessed our country with rich natural and human resources. The only problem is that “the means of production and the rewards of labor” are all not evenly or socially distributed by Western standardseven though we are a “Christianized” country. Thats why God has allow government to exist and regulate man’s inhumanity to humanity for human progress and social upliftment. If govt is a sham, its people is a sham. If you do not care for the rights of your neighbor, you have no right to demand for yourself.

  7. June 30, 2009 at 9:18 pm
    GabbyD

    @satur

    yeah, nitty gritty :) i’m just confused by the poem. i am also confused at the concept of level playing field. i guess you mean equal opportunities. but i can’t shake the thought that what u really mean is equal outcomes.

    if its equal opportunities thats what you mean, then you have to admit that there ARE rich people who are very talented and have succeeded by hard work, skill, talent, lakas ng loob, etc. i mean, those guys do exist right?

    @jojie
    ah, good point! you’ve just stumbled on the key question: how should the “rewards of labor” be determined? why should it be “socially determined”? if its socially determined (i’m not sure what that means, sorry), what does that mean for increases in productivity?

    these are big questions friend. mahirap sagutin…

  8. June 30, 2009 at 11:53 pm
    satur sulit

    yes of course. the indictment is not of honest effort and hard-earned money, but of the structure of money, as it is, that rewards also dishonest effort and accumulates riches in the hands of idle, spoiled often brainless heirs whose sport it is to run for public office etc etc…while the poor honest hardworker scrapes up for his family’s next meal… it confuses me also… (back in a few weeks)

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