Friday, October 16, 2009

What is True Wealth

(image from

The case of the billionaire on a sinking ship
Who offers to pay a million dollars
For the life preserver
Buoyantly supporting the one and only life belted individual
Floating safely away from the disaster
Which offer the lucky one rejects
Even though finally bid for at the tycoon's limit
Of a billion dollars "cash money"
Proves that money is not wealth
For it cannot buy any "henceforth"
Days of life.

Under omnirealistic conditions
When bluffing and credit are of no avail
Money can be articulated
Neither backwardly, forwardly, nor now.

True wealth is the already accomplished
Organization of physical environment resources
By human capabilities
To clothe, shelter, feed,
Protect, inform
And accommodate the initiatives,
Ans transport requirements
Of human lives.

The magnitude of true wealth consists
Of the number of forward days
Of the number of human beings
Assuredly provided for
By at hand artifacts and consumables.

(from And It Came to Pass -- Not to Stay
by R. Buckminster Fuller
Lars Muller Publishers - 2008)

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