The Lonely Goatherd Blog And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats - Matthew 25:32
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July 30, 2003
Henry Ford, the greatest benefactor in human history Henry Ford was born 140 years ago today, on July 30, 1863. We should all take a moment today to thank Rand for this great man.
Henry Ford was the greatest benefactor in all of human history. According to dictionary.com, a benefactor is "One who confers a benefit or benefits." Henry Ford has arguably conferred more benefits to mankind than any one other person in history.
Mother Theresa was OK, but Henry Ford did 10,000 times more to actually help poor people. Sure Mother Theresa helped thousands of poor sick people. Tens of millions of folks have gone from poor struggling dirt farmers to being middle class homeowners who could afford to send their children to college, though, because of Henry Ford.
Moreover many times those millions have gained mobility and benefits from being able to DRIVE. Being able to get around has exponentially increased individual options. Why, I can get a job in the city 20 miles away, and easily drive there every day. Indeed, anyone who could come up with $200 could buy themselves a new Model T and go anywhere- no walking, no horses to feed or rest.
Don't get me wrong- Henry Ford was no saint. He apparently didn't care much for the Hebrew people. Privately, he apparently didn't much like black folks either. He hated unions.
These private feelings are irrelevant, however. Note the famous words of Adam Smith in The Wealth of Nations, "It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest." This is the essential elemental beauty of capitalism.
Henry Ford may not have give a good goddam about a black man. However, he did black Americans far more good than even the sainted Martin Luther King. Now, MLK was doubtless a nicer guy than Ford. He CARED much more about a black man than Ford, no doubt. MLK helped get people the right to vote and go to the bathroom. These are good things.
Ford, on the other hand, created millions of jobs for black folk who could then afford to buy whole houses with multiple bathrooms of their own. Millions of black folk went from poor indebted sharecroppers to being middle class homeowners. Dad's wages working for Ford have sent more kids to college than the United Negro College Fund.
Black folk: Think for a minute, then tell me whose efforts actually benefit YOU the most day to day, Jesse Jackson or Henry Ford?
MLK and Mother Theresa doubtless CARED far more about poor oppressed folk than Henry Ford. However, their Deep Concern won't put food on your table. A good job at Ford, however, does just that and much more. Plus giving even the customers the mobility to get much better choices of jobs, and health care, etc.
No more than he liked unions or lost sleeping worrying about the poor people, he offered a $5 per day minimum wage- a big deal- on grounds that it increased productivity. He battled unions, but without Ford creating the industry there would have been no union jobs over whose wages anyone could fight.
On a lighter note, for a little consideration of the downside of this benificence, dig up a copy of Jerry Reed's classic hit "Lord, Mr Ford."