All of the sudden Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon and Blue Origin, is getting a lot of hate on social media. The reason seems to be that he is spending a lot of money in an attempt to open up the high frontier of space rather than making his business empire into a private poverty program.

Typical is a tweet by Matthew Chapman who had some interesting suggestions about what Bezos should spend his wealth on.

Others have similar suggestions ranging from paying for everyone’s schooling to covering medical bills for the needy.

Hating the rich who provides benefits to their customers

Bezos is most famous for creating and growing Amazon.com, an online retailing giant that has changed the way people shop for things. Why hop in the car and schlep over to the store and spend hour shopping when you can point and click and order what you need in minutes? Amazon has made shopping convenient and less time consuming but has destroyed a lot of retail stores as a result. Bezos thus earned the hatred of political activists and media people on the left.

What is so wrong about space?

Buzzfeed notes that the current invective directed at Bezos’ space program is a carryover to the ancient controversy surrounding NASA spending, which some believe should have been spent on social programs. The attitude was divorced from reality.

The Great Society social programs were wasteful and tended to make social problems worse. NASA has contributed to the American economy by being a center of technological innovation, especially during the glory days of Apollo.

Bezos’ vision for space is mind-blowing. He envisions a civilization that exists primarily in space, a human race numbering a trillion people, using asteroid and lunar resources to spark a new industrial revolution. Earth would be reserved for residential development and a few light industries, a garden planet.

How Bezos can alleviate poverty

Bezos is not stingy where it comes to his charitable giving. However, if one wants to see him address the problems of poverty and income inequality, the last thing one should do is to take his wealth and feed the welfare state monster. Governments, with resources that dwarf those of Bezos, have tried throwing money at the problem and have failed.

The best way that one can encourage Jeff Bezos to address poverty is to leave him alone and let him do his work.

President Ronald Reagan once noted that the best poverty program is a job. Bezos has been adroit at creating jobs through his various enterprises. The arrangement may not suit bureaucrats and activists who demand that something must be done, but it will address the problem better than another social welfare scheme.