Jesus, Inheritance, and Family Values

Andrew Sullivan reprints a nice quote from the rich an generous Warren Buffett:

“Neither [late wife] Susie nor I ever thought we should pass huge amounts of money along to our children,” said Warren Buffett, who said he plans to give away his remaining stock holdings after his death but that he has “quite a bit of cash” he still plans to leave to those close to him. “Our children are great,” he told Fortune. “But I would argue that when your kids have all the advantages anyway, in terms of how they grow up and the opportunities they have for education, including what they learn at home – I would say it’s neither right nor rational to be flooding them with money.”

Which makes so much sense, I’m kind of startled. Inheritance is such a natural, assumed thing that I never stopped to think that someone as rich as Buffett might do his children a favor by not giving them all his cash. My God, If this were the social norm, would Paris Hilton have ever been able to scrape together enough money and time to record an album?

Sullivan (who’s deeply religious) also has this to say about Jesus:

…Jesus, whose disdain for the biological, nuclear family is one of the great themes of the Gospels. He disowned his own parents as a teenager, abandoned them in adulthood, taking care of his mother only at the hour of his death and entrusting her to his closest friend, John. He never married, told his followers to abandon their spouses and children without even saying goodbye, and, if necessary to hate their mothers and fathers.

Counterintuitive analysis, but that actually sounds a lot like the Gospels I remember hearing in church.

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