Opinions, Opinion: Forget Space, Jeff Bezos -- There's A Lot You Could Do On Earth - Cnn

Opinions, Opinion: Forget Space

Opinion: Forget space, Jeff Bezos -- there's a lot you could do on Earth

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6/8/2021 1:18:00 PM

'From a moral perspective, Bezos should really be spending more time looking down rather than up.' CNNOpinion

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(CNN)Jeff Bezos seems to have run out of things to colonize here on Earth. Kara Alaimo His company, Amazon, now commands almost half of America's online retail purchases, according to one estimate. Amazon has acquired Whole Foods, a major grocery chain, and the powerhouse Hollywood studio MGM. Bezos has also bought The Washington Post and is now the richest person in the world. So, with little left to acquire on this planet, he's turning his sights to outer space. Read More Bezos announced Monday that he'll be joining the first manned flight of Blue Origin, his space company, next month, along with his brother. Media coverage quickly focused on the fact that Bezos will beat out other male billionaires like Elon Musk and Richard Branson in entering outer space first. But, from a moral perspective, Bezos should really be spending more time looking down rather than up. According to the World Bank, 689 million people are living in extreme poverty, which is defined as less than $1.90 per day. Half of them are children. The coronavirus pandemic has demolished two decades of progress, pushing an additional 120 million people into extreme poverty -- a number that is only expected to rise by the end of the year. With an estimated net worth of $187 billion, there's a whole lot Bezos could do to change that -- especially given the time he'll now have on his hands since he's stepping down from his role as Amazon's chief executive. For example, a gift of just $58 to a nonprofit like the International Rescue Committee -- an organization I support despite a net worth far below that of Bezos, and hope you will too -- can send a child to school for an entire year. Just imagine what could be done with $1 billion -- the amount Bezos once said he was investing each year in his rocket development. In fact, the Brookings Institution calculated that billionaires who are worth far less than Bezos could singlehandedly lower the poverty rates in their countries significantly. 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Here's what Bezos' trip to space will look like 01:03In the United States, one-third of wealthy American households stepped up their charitable giving to organizations helping others meet their basic needs last year in recognition of the vast challenges spawned by the pandemic, according to Bank of America and the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. One might have expected Bezos to focus more on the good he could do, considering how richly he profited off of the pandemic: Amazon saw a nearly 200% increase in profits as Americans shopped online during the pandemic. With $187 billion, the reality is that Bezos doesn't have to choose between helping others and building his own space enterprise. And he does make significant charitable contributions -- notably, the single-largest charitable contribution in 2020 came from Bezos, according to The Chronicle of Philanthropy (a $10 billion gift aimed at fighting climate change). But for Bezos to throw his money so wantonly into the solar system is a bit of a sickening choice at a time in the world when people have been dying of Covid in India due to lax of oxygen. For a better model of what to do with his money, Bezos might look at his ex-wife, MacKenzie Scott -- who, along with her new husband, Dan Jewett, has signed the Giving Pledge, promising to donate the majority of their wealth. In 2020, Scott gave away almost $6 billion. Recently, she has focused on supporting historically Black colleges and universities, proving that she has the ability to empathize with people whose experiences are different from her own.Meanwhile, Bezos has been making global headlines for the lavish lifestyle he's enjoying with girlfriend Lauren Sanchez, spending $255 million on luxury Los Angeles mansions last year while the world was ravaged by a pandemic, and investing in a new yacht believed to cost about $500 million. But it's not just about Bezos's spending. Bezos is uniquely positioned to show leadership among billionaires and the very wealthy about what their money can do, especially in a time of crisis that has spelled big profits for them -- and his actions don't seem to give any indication he's planning to exercise this power for the greater good in ways that it's obvious he could. Bezos' absence from the Giving Pledge is especially remarkable given some of the problems his own company has inflicted. Amazon has, of course, been able to undercut the prices of many retailers because it is mostly an online retailer and therefore avoids the cost of storefronts. As a result, it's been blamed for putting businesses from independent bookstores to major chains like Sears and JC Penney out of business. And, even as it has earned billions of dollars, Amazon paid no federal taxes in 2018, according to a 2019 analysis by the Institute on Taxation & Economic Policy (it did pay slightly more than 1% of its profits in taxes in 2019). The National Labor Relations Board this year also deemed Amazon to have illegally retaliated against staffers who raised concerns about warehouse safety. (The company said it had fired them for"repeatedly violating internal policies," and not for criticizing working conditions.) Get our free weekly newsletterSign up for CNN Opinion's new newsletter.

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Opinion Ummm.. morals? Maybe but you have to have them. Opinion The guy changes the face of retail and the internet (for the good) while also pushing the boundaries of space travel for humanity and this person like, 'ya, but that's not enough'. Opinion 'You don't need penis shaped rockets when you can have penis wind turbines, and penis high-speed rail cars, and penis pumps... for water in rural villages.'

Opinion Well said.... Opinion Let him adventure.He has worked for it. Opinion When I was young I wanted to travel above our atmosphere to have a clear view of the stars now my grandchildren can have that dream come true thanx to men like Bezos enjoy the ride Opinion It's very disturbing how the democrat media (MSNBC, NBC, CBS, CNN, WaPo, NYT) are complicit in disinformation & cover up the true origin of COVID. Our press is no longer a legitimate source for honest reporting. They destroyed themselves from within in an effort to take out Trump

Opinion Bezos earned that money. He creates good jobs when he spends it. It would be better for his company if he didn't take that personal risk, but it's his life and his money. He's entitled to make that choice. I hope he has a blast! Opinion has your site been hacked? Opinion Is this a joke? Your link is not working....

Opinion

Richest person not on Earth: Jeff Bezos plans space flightAmazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos will go to space next month when his company, Blue Origin, launches its first passenger-carrying mission. Greedy! On Earth, he had already seen everything.

Opinion Need more people like him, too many people talking shit about successful people Opinion Oh, he looks down on lots of people, already. Opinion Take Elon with you 🤣 Opinion There are people who just need couple of dollars to live. Meanwhile this guy throws billions to unnecessary projects... Disgusting.

Jeff Bezos Going to Space on Blue Origin's First Manned Rocket, Bringing BrotherJeff Bezos Going to Space on Blue Origin's First-Manned Rocket, Bringing Brother He gonna get abducted lol The best choice I've made this year was investing in cryptocurrency and forex trading and earning from home. With the help of micheal33590 I've been earning $ 23k weekly I've never regretted this decision. 🙏🏻🙏🏻

Jeff Bezos Will Fly To Space On Blue Origin’s First Crewed FlightThe first crewed flight of Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket ship will take place just 15 days after Bezos exits as Amazon’s CEO. Oh dear, that'll make stocks plummet if he plummets too Let's hope he stays there it's not space flight

Jeff Bezos Will Go to Space in JulyJeff Bezos will make his maiden space voyage on board the New Shepard, a spacecraft made by his company, Blue Origin. The journey is set for July 20, two weeks after he steps down as Amazon CEO. &… Lex Luthor Let’s hope he stays there Stay

Jeff Bezos Will Fly To Space On Blue Origin’s First Crewed FlightThe first crewed flight of Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket ship will take place just 15 days after Bezos exits as Amazon’s CEO.

Jeff Bezos Will Fly To Space On Blue Origin’s First Crewed FlightThe first crewed flight of Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket ship will take place just 15 days after Bezos exits as Amazon’s CEO. his meal ticket good for jeff and the bro 😂😂🔥🍿🍿🌍what!!