Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Why live like a Pauper

Encouraged by reading so many posts on Quora pointing out how important it is to read books, I have been trying to keep that habit of mine going! J

These days am reading Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography by Walter Issacson.

And I stumbled across this wonderful passage which I feel can be used as a litmus test when forced to be corrupt/adopt some kind of malpractices.

Here I reproduce the passage -

“To determine whether I should publish it or not, I went home in the evening, purchased a two penny loaf at the baker’s, and with the water from the pump made my supper; I then wrapped myself up in my great-coat, and laid down on the floor and slept till morning, when, on another loaf and a mug of water, I made my breakfast. From this regimen I feel no inconvenience whatsoever. Finding I can live in this manner, I have formed a determination never to prostitute my press to the purposes of corruption and abuse of this kind for the sake of gaining a more comfortable subsistence.”

The context is that Franklin was working as a printer and a customer asked him to publish a piece in his paper which was both scandalous and defamatory. Also, the customer was offering huge sums of money. To decide whether to take the money or not – Franklin took the above mentioned test on him.

Oh boy, what a way to decide whether to indulge in unfair means. Wouldn't it be great if each one of us can administer ourselves to such a test to determine if it was really necessary for us to be corrupt? Surely it would go a long way in reducing it!

Peace out!
(Until I find something else worth posting about)

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