Jarrod gets it backwards, in a moan about Seattle’s creative businesses and their lack of ‘generosity’

“Seattle has an enormous number of Creative Class members as well as a ridiculous amount of creative potential … Microsoft, Adobe , Starbucks, Tully’s, REI, The North Face, Nordstrom, Washington Mutual, Amazon.com, Safeco, Jones Soda, Taco Del Mar, Getty Images, Real Networks, Sur La Table, Red Robin, The Little Gym, Nintendo, and the list could go on and on all began or continue to thrive in the Seattle area. All of these companies are pioneers for their industry. Seattle is incredibly innovative… they just pull stuff out of thin air. People in Seattle are constantly using their individuality to invent, rediscover, and engineer. [yet] … Seattle was found to be the least generous city in the country. So here is what Seattle has going on… ‘money + creativity + innovation = the generosity of Scrooge’. … Can we stop looking to use our creativity to make money and gain popularity and see it as a gift that we possess that can move others to a common good?”

Erm, now who am I to talk about Seattle? Well, I did once make a web-site for a billion-dollar company located there. So here goes; it strikes me that Jarrod judges Seattle’s industries in a completely ‘backwards’ manner. Since what they are doing is generosity. They are making money. By the application of their minds. Giving people products they want. And as a by-product they are also making jobs, infrastructure, families, and all the rest. In your city. That alone is generosity enough, that is their immeasurable contribution to the “common good”. So let them get on with it, and stop panhandling for their spare change.

Similarly, the whole ‘charitable giving’ potlach idea also gets it backwards; almost entirely judging ‘worthiness’ not by the effective on-the-ground value of what the giving actually accomplished in the long term, but purely on the amount of money given away.