The Limits of Philanthropy

Topic: The Limits of Philanthropy.

Gerry Adams: I'm a great fan of a man called Chuck Feeney.  And if you haven’t interviewed Chuck Feeney, and he might not do an interview with you, but Chuck Feeney was a billionaire who gave away all of his money. 

I’ll give you an example.  I brought him on to see a survival school for the Irish language.  And I was trying to encourage him to give some money to it. 

This was a school where parents had financed by running raffles and, you know, all of that sort of fundraising projects.  And the kids were all in this big hall, and they were getting a brilliant education. 

So he said to me when we went through the whole thing; and I thought he was highly impressed by it; but he says, “I’m not going to give them any money.”  And I said, “Why not?”  And he said, “Well, they’re doing very well without me.  Perhaps if I give them money they wouldn’t do as well.” 

So I would take a leaf from his sort of experience of philanthropy and put it into sustainable projects.

 

Recorded on: Oct 8, 2007

Gerry Adams tells of one personal experience with philanthropy.

Live on Monday: Does the US need one billion people?

What would happen if you tripled the US population? Matthew Yglesias and moderator Charles Duhigg explore the idea on Big Think Live.

Big Think LIVE

Is immigration key to bolstering the American economy? Could having one billion Americans secure the US's position as the global superpower?

Keep reading Show less

Mars pole may be hiding salty lakes and life, find researchers

Researchers detect a large lake and several ponds deep under the ice of the Martian South Pole.

Getty Images
Surprising Science
  • Italian scientists release findings of a large underground lake and three ponds below the South Pole of Mars.
  • The lake might contain water, with salt preventing them from freezing.
  • The presence of water may indicate the existence of microbial and other life forms on the planet.
Keep reading Show less

In praise of nudity: The nudist beaches of Central and Eastern Europe

"Nothing but naked people: fat ones, thin ones, old, young…"

Photo by Jessica D. Vega on Unsplash
Culture & Religion
They lie on towels, blankets and mattresses, without wind screens, but under umbrellas.
Keep reading Show less

Mystery anomaly weakens Earth's magnetic field, report scientists

A strange weakness in the Earth's protective magnetic field is growing and possibly splitting, shows data.

ESA
Surprising Science
  • "The South Atlantic Anomaly" in the Earth's magnetic field is growing and possibly splitting, shows data.
  • The information was gathered by the ESA's Swarm Constellation mission satellites.
  • The changes may indicate the coming reversal of the North and South Poles.
Keep reading Show less

Crows are self-aware just like us, says new study

Crows have their own version of the human cerebral cortex.

Credit: Amarnath Tade/ Unsplash
Mind & Brain
  • Crows and the rest of the corvid family keep turning out to be smarter and smarter.
  • New research observes them thinking about what they've just seen and associating it with an appropriate response.
  • A corvid's pallium is packed with more neurons than a great ape's.
  • Keep reading Show less
    Quantcast