The persons who become rich/The persons who become poor

Vernon Rive . 21/01/2012 10:40:16 a.m.

In the last couple of weeks I've been returning to some of my academic roots, wading through a bunch of readings on law, economics, ethics and philosophy.

Currently half way through Richard Posner's Utilitariansm, Economics and Legal Theory 8 J. Legal Stud. 103 1979.

This quote (p23, Posner quoting Frank Knight (Ethics of Competition and Other Essays, 1935) in turn quoting John Ruskin, Ad Valorem (1915)) jumped out as not a bad one for summer reflection...

"In a community regulated by laws of demand and supply, but protected from open violence, the persons who become rich are, generally speaking, industrious, resolute, proud, covetous, prompt, methodical, sensible, unimaginative, insensitive, and ignorant. The persons who remain poor are the entirely foolish, the entirely wise, the idle, the reckless, the humble, the thoughtful, the dull, the imaginative, the sensitive, the well-informed, the improvident, the irregularly and impulsively wicked, the clumsy knave, the open thief, and the entirely merciful, just, and godly person."

Late NY's resolutions:
1.Work on the thoughtful, imaginative, sensitive etc; less of the clumsy knave...
2. Finish this damn Posner article before we head to Urupukapuka tomorrow.

By Vernon Rive on 21/01/2012 10:40:16 a.m. | Comments (2) | Print |

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    I’m an Auckland based writer, researcher, lawyer and lecturer specialising in environmental, resource management and public law.  My particular interest is in the international law framework influencing domestic law and policy on climate change and biodiversity protection.  I'm the author of chapters on the International Framework, New Zealand Climate Change Regulation and Adaptation to Climate Change in the 2011 Lexis Nexis-published book Climate Change Law and Policy in New Zealand and the general editor of the Resource Management Bulletin.  I also lecture in Public, Resource Management Law and International Environmental Law at AUT Law School.