In our society, it's fashionable to villify the wealthy, particularly those who are extremely rich. We tax them more heavily - and few have a problem with that.
But often, those who are wealthy are the ones who help our society the most. They build businesses and provide jobs to those around them, and sometimes to people around the globe. And many of them turn into philanthropists who fund charitable causes, year after year. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is among the best examples of this.
The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Gates and Warren Buffett have challenged fellow billionaires to follow their example and give away the majority of their fortune, and some are following in their footsteps. It's extremely admirable.
Here's an excerpt from the story:
Mr. Buffett and Mr. Gates in June had asked the individuals and families to publicly commit to give away at least half of their wealth within their lifetimes or after their deaths.
The pledge stemmed from a series of dinners the two men held for the nation's billionaires over the past year to discuss the effects of the recession on philanthropy.
Read the full story here: