He didn’t suffer fools gladly.
That’s an old expression with biblical origins that is used to describe a person who didn’t tolerate well those who he thought were fools – or at least not as smart, as informed or as well-versed as he.
To many, this is an honorable trait, as New York Times columnist David Brooks points out. But, as Brooks says, good manners permit one to suffer fools gladly.
Manners have gotten a bad rap over the years, just as political correctness has.
Brooks points out that when someone who doesn’t suffer fools gladly humiliates someone, he can look to be the bigger fool.
Let’s take it a step further. Suppose you worked for someone who did not suffer fools gladly. How would you feel when he didn’t show the necessary patience as you were learning your job? Sometimes, the fool you don’t suffer gladly is merely someone who disagrees with you. We’ve seen in Washington, D.C., in recent times, how not suffering fools gladly can actually prevent things from getting done.
Speaking of Washington, D.C., Maureen Dowd, another New York Times columnist, pointed out the differences between President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. Biden relishes negotiating deals on Capitol Hill, while the president has little patience for it, Dowd says. Apparently, the president does not suffer fools gladly, if Dowd’s assessment is correct. Biden, on the other hand, loves to.
It’s been said that good people have three characteristics, among many. They have humility, integrity and generosity. Perhaps one can have integrity and not suffer fools gladly. But it would be difficult to be humble and generous, and not suffer fools gladly.
It’s OK to be confident. It’s certainly OK, even desirable, to think well of yourself – on the inside. But being humble means you don’t flaunt that confidence by making others feel less worthy. You do your thing well, and give others credit.
Being generous means that you are blessed to have what you have, and are willing to share with those who may not have what you have. The more you give, the more you get in most situations.
Go back to the employer-employee relationship. A humble, generous employer with integrity is someone everyone would want to work for. He shows patience with the employee when needed. He appreciates the efforts his employees give him. He generously pays for those efforts. He realizes that without those employees, he would not be where he is. Because of his integrity, he always does the right thing, regardless of the effect on him.
He realizes his employees may not know as much as he does, because they are not in position to know. But they are not fools to be suffered.
He is not just being polite, and showing good manners by being humble, generous and having integrity. He’s being a good business person and a great employer. Those characteristics greatly improve his chances of success.
He also believes that his success depends on how much he helps others succeed. If you are a humble, generous person with integrity, and have the desire to help others like you succeed, visit That could be the vehicle to fulfill your dream of helping others, thus helping yourself.
It takes many to make a world. It’s OK to know something that someone else doesn’t know. Just don’t be afraid to share what you know. Share it with humility, integrity and generosity. Suffer “fools” gladly, then give them credit for accomplishments. If you don’t, you could look like the bigger fool.


We’ve all been taught that spending less and saving more will increase our wealth over time. No one disputes that.
When we want to cut household spending, most of us prefer to do it gradually, rather than all at once. For example, we may decide to go to Starbucks three times a week, rather than five.
As we get used to three times a week, we may go down to two, then one, then none. Then, we see a Starbucks run as a real treat, and do it once in a while. After all, the coffee you bring in your Thermos may not be Starbucks, and you may long for a treat once in a while as a reward for your good behavior. It’s OK to splurge, but not as a habit.
The point is, we feel cuts in household spending directly. They are a real sacrifice, as we see them, but we do it for a better, long-term outcome.
Then, there is government spending. It can best be called a real illusion. Yes, real illusion is an oxymoron, but it applies here. First, the money is REAL, even though the government can print it at will. It’s yours, mine and ours. The illusion comes in the concept that we would not really feel cuts in government spending, since so much of it is waste, so it should be relatively easy to cut.
We can prove that by watching people who advocate government spending cuts in the aggregate, but when it cuts things close to where they live, they complain bitterly.
We can debate whether government should be so intertwined with the economy, but the fact is, it is. It is tough to reduce its importance to the overall economic well-being.
Many private industries, defense contractors, for example, have, as their largest customer, the government. Cuts in defense could affect lots of private sector jobs. And just watch the almost annual debate over cutting superfluous military bases. The communities, and states, in which those bases are located would be hurt badly, even though closing such bases makes perfect economic sense from afar. Perhaps those bases are outdated. Perhaps they are just not needed for the country’s defense. But the shopkeepers, restaurants and other businesses whose clientele lives or works at these bases often go out of business when their base closes.
Many see certain government departments as unnecessary. Certainly, the usefulness of some agencies is debatable, but cutting such agencies in their entirety, all at once, would puts hundreds of thousands, if not millions, more people out of work in a job market that can’t find work for those currently idle.
Proponents of such spending cuts would simply accuse those laid-off government workers as having too easy a life for too long. The fact is, they were working before the cuts, and now they are not. What do you think would be the bigger problem as you see it?

Our personal spending, multiplied out over time and people, affects the economy. The local Starbucks wouldn’t likely go out of business if we cut back our spending there, but if EVERYONE did, it might be a different story. The point is that spending cuts are most palatable if done gradually, over time. If Starbucks anticipates that people would be cutting back their coffee runs over time, they could plan for it – perhaps by lowering prices and providing better benefits to keep people from doing it. If you are a Starbucks fan, and the prices were lowered, you’d be less likely to cut back because Starbucks is reducing the spending for you.
If you want to spend less, save more and make money at the same time, visit
As with personal spending, government spending cuts should be incremental and gradual over time to make them more palatable. It’s been said that anyone can cut taxes. Anyone can raise taxes. Cutting spending, in a way that won’t have too many people screaming, is the real challenge. More people get re-elected because of spending, and securing aid for the home district, than by cutting taxes – or spending. Despite the criticism of earmark spending – look at how much of it was in the fiscal cliff deal – politicians rely on it.
The lesson here is to worry about spending in your own household. Saving more and spending less, as consumer adviser Clark Howard preaches on radio, television and in newspapers, is the key to building wealth. We should watch how our tax dollars are spent, certainly. But we should be aware that cutting spending in large amounts quickly is perilous. It’s no surprise that politicians fear taking on that chore.


It was a real cliffhanger.
But the politicians recently avoided a fiscal cliff that they had created. Yep, they even set up another one to come in a few weeks.
Besides disgust at those who supposedly serve us, there are other ways to feel about all this.
Getting down to brass tacks, or, should we say, brass tax, generally taxes only trend up no matter who we are, and how much we earn.
That said, we should not let taxes alone decide how we conduct our economic life.
We heard stories on talk radio and other places during the election campaign about people who were willing to expand their businesses, or open new franchises, but declined out of fear and uncertainty over the tax and regulatory atmosphere.
To those who will pass up expansion opportunities for these reasons, remember one thing: if the expansion opportunity is economically viable – in other words, if you would increase sales by expanding – if you don’t do it, someone else will.
Sure, you have to be conscious of costs. If the opportunities are marginal, or very high risk, caution is warranted. But if the need is there, and the market is there for what you do, you can figure out how to expand and still turn a good profit despite the tax and regulatory milieu. Or, someone else will.
Such decisions have more to do with the type of person you are, than the so-called government interference. If you are the type who start businesses and employ people and try to get as much out of them for as little as you can get away with paying them, then it would make sense that you would be cautious about expanding. After all, you don’t want to be FORCED to take care of your people.
But if you are the type of person who succeeds by helping others succeed, and who realizes that your success is dependent on others, you would be less concerned with the tax and regulatory milieu and more concerned with whether your business will do better by expanding.
If you are not a business owner, but an employee of one, think about how you are treated at work. Does your boss help YOU succeed? Does he realize that YOU are helping make him rich, and reward you accordingly? Sure, every business is different, and rewards can come in various forms. No one will ever get rich by flipping burgers or making pizzas.
But if you are in those kinds of jobs, does your boss do the little things that help make your time there a little bit better? Does he realize that you are working hard, and do not plan to do this the rest of your life? Would he be proud the day you moved on to better things?
Or, is your boss the type to work you to death, and believe that he’s given you a job and you should be grateful? He knows you won’t do this the rest of your life, but, the day you leave, he curses you out for leaving him short of help.
The lesson here is that business people and entrepreneurs get more from their staffs by recognizing that they can’t do it alone. They appreciate everything their employees do for them. They treat them like family. Most of all, they work to make THEM successful, either in the line of work in which they are employed, or other, more advanced lines of work. They heed the words of the late Zig Ziglar, who said that if you help others get what they want, you’ll get what you want.
If you are an entrepreneur looking for a good business opportunity, or an employee looking to break away from what you are doing, visit You may care about what goes on in Washington, D.C., because you want to be a good citizen. But you won’t worry about the tax or regulatory situation because it won’t matter to you. Imagine having a goal to have a six-figure TAX BILL! And, you’ll succeed only by helping others succeed with you.
You may watch manufactured cliffhangers on TV, but you will always be on solid, even wealthy, ground with all the friends you helped.


Are we, or have we been, moving into a trend in which capital surpasses labor as the economic engine?
New York Times columnist and Pulitzer Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman thinks so.
From the working person’s viewpoint, the economy is still quite depressed. But economic figures are improving and corporations are making record profits. Many of these companies are holding on to their cash for dear life, fearing the investment and regulatory climate now and to come.
Krugman points out that manufacturing is moving back to the U.S. from overseas. He uses the example of manufacturing computer mother boards. They are made largely by robots, so the cheap, Asian labor is no longer needed. Perhaps that’s why we hear that China’s economy is contracting.
But let’s look at the way things are, from where you sit. Chances are, if you are still working, you have at least some fear that your job is going to go away before you want it to. Perhaps you are saving your pennies, and not spending frivolously, in anticipation of being shown the door at work. The U.S. savings rate needed a shot in the arm, for sure, but how it is getting it is quite disconcerting.
Perhaps you are out of work, and have been for a while. You scratch your head because the job you had, which you had thought, or even had been told, was vital to your company just went away. It’s not as if you had done a lousy job at it and were replaced. Your job just went away, and it’s not coming back.
Meanwhile, you hear about record profits for companies and wonder why they are not putting some of that money back into their operations, i.e. in creating new jobs. Well, they probably don’t have to. Technology has improved to the point at which machines replace people in big numbers. No matter how much money they have, companies will not create jobs they don’t think they need. Some will actually cut jobs they should maintain.
This phenomenon is detrimental to what we know as the middle class. Because those with the capital have political benefactors, they may be creating a political system that lets them get richer at others’ expense. When the successful are protected in this way, the less successful become more vulnerable. As Krugman says, we’re not talking about a gap between the educated work force and the less educated. In this milieu, EVERYONE gets paid less. When the less successful become more vulnerable, they not only get paid less for what they do. They pay more for what they need.
Krugman says that the rich also are fighting to eliminate inheritance taxes. He may find some disagreement here, because inheritance taxes can prevent family businesses from being given to future generations of that family. Sometimes, families have to sell their businesses to cover the tax bill, and there is something wrong with that. On the other hand, there could be large amounts of wealth being easily transferred to people who are already wealthy, without adding to the economic engine.
If this trend of forced idleness continues, it bodes ill. Look at what is happening in other countries, where young, often educated people can’t find work. Such free time among a disgruntled group can lead to all sorts of bad things.
However, in all this, there is good news. There are lots of ways out there to make money, without worrying about having a traditional job. To check out one of the best, visit Hear and see the stories of how average people are making above-average incomes, and helping others do the same. It also attacks the notion of paying more for what one needs.
So if you are working, think about your plan B. Savings will certainly help you, but they may not cover all your bills without a paycheck. If you are not working, don’t be discouraged. Check out one of the many opportunities there are, through which average people, regardless of education, are prospering. Sometimes, becoming successful just requires being open to looking at something different.
It has been said that the best way to help the poor is to not be one of them. The best way to fight the capital vs. labor battle that Krugman illustrates is to find ways to generate more real capital. Kurgman calls the capital guys robber barons. If you help people prosper with you, that’s makes you a benefactor.