William J. H. Boetcker Money Quote saying you cannot accomplish anything by focusing on its’ opposite action or quality. William J. H. Boetcker said:
“You cannot bring prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot lift the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot further brotherhood of men by inciting class hatred. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves” — William J. H. Boetcker
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William J. H. Boetcker is making several points about economic and social policies. He argues that prosperity cannot be achieved by discouraging habits like thrift and savings. Weakenening the strong does not help the weak, and hurting the rich does not help the poor. Spending more than one’s income leads to trouble.
Promoting class hatred harms brotherhood. And people cannot become self-reliant or build character if their initiative and independence are taken away by doing things for them that they could do for themselves.
Overall, Boetcker is advocating for individual responsibility, limited government intervention, and not implementing policies that harm or weaken certain groups in a misguided effort to help others. He believes societies are best served by encouraging virtues like thrift, hard work, self-sufficiency and bringing people together rather than dividing them.