Sunday, December 06, 2009

Ebenezer Scrooge Could Write a Best Seller in America

Scrooge may be one of literature's unsung heroes. He is the victim of having been created at the wrong place and in the wrong era. His value system was scorned and treated with derision. How would he be judged today?

Today, there are scores of Americans loudly trumpeting and rallying for his values. He is not a miser, but a hero! In the past, he was the archetype of a failed human being; today he would be doing book signings and preaching his message on the AM radio dial.

Consider some of his quotes which used to earn him the reputation of a miser and wicked man...

"I wish to be left alone, sir! That is what I wish! I don't make myself merry at Christmas and I cannot afford to make idle people merry. I have been forced to support the establishments I have mentioned through taxation and God knows they cost more than they're worth. Those who are badly off must go there."

Here he articulates a belief that anyone receiving assistance is "idle".

"Another word from you, Cratchit, and you will celebrate Christmas by losing your position."

Scrooge uses his financial advantage to further line his pockets while paying as little as he can. The abuse of workers does not bother him because if they do not like it, they may go elsewhere. In his mind, he has committed no foul. This is a completely justifiable position to many Americans.

Scrooge believes virtue comes from making money and being shrewd in business. The following statement by Jacob Marley runs in complete opposition to his worldview:

"Business?! Mankind was my business! The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were all my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!"

Yes, Scrooge may have been a failure in the mind and era of Dickens; but in many town halls across today's America ....

He would be the featured speaker.

5 comments:

Steve H. said...

Bada-da-bing...

Dead on bro...wonder if Glen Beck will get any ghostly visits this Christmas...

Kay said...

Wow. Great analogy. I mean it.

I've always recognized the corruption that is Scrooge, but I hadn't thought that others might think of him as hero. I bet they do, but quietly.

Redlefty said...

Capitalism for the win! ;)

Great connective thoughts.

The Snitch said...

It's amazing what good humans in a broken world will stoop to in order to preserve their own hide and/or pride.

However, Dickens didn't end the story with Scrooge giving more money to the State. He gave it personally to those his life intersected with, and to charities of his choosing.

Maybe if the government had intervened earlier, Scrooge would have been forced to give the "proper" amount to the poor all along, and we wouldn't have need for his pesky spiritual conversion.

WES ELLIS said...

I wish I'd have seen this post earlier. Man it's good!

I was thinking similar thoughts as I watched a Muppet Christmas Carol (it's awesome, ok) a couple of weeks ago. What if Mankind was our business? Perhaps we wouldn't see reward for our work as the ability to spend our money on ourselves without restriction. Maybe we'd see reward for our work in how our resources can go toward helping others.

Wonderful post!

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