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Even a Trickle, Properly Focussed, Helps

In the Lakota Way, if a person has an ability, s/he has a responsibility to use it to help others, and in so doing, increase the prosperity of all. When the washichu first came to this Turtle Island, and for decades after, they tried to squash this concept, while violating the Doctrine of Separation of Church and State. They tried beating it out of us; starving it out of us; blackmailing it out of us; and "educating" it out of us. Recently, I saw a version of this ancient ITI concept show up in a management article as "the latest thing". It is enough to make us ITI fall on the ground wheezing from laughter. Nothing like re-inventing the wheel, or "deja vu all over again". Since I became enfranchised, I have had my own version of "trickle economics", using bits of my own money to help other people start their own micro-businesses, on the premise that it is far better to enable a person or family to have their own business, and so be self-supporting, than it is to orient them to the 'massa-slave' mentality too common in 'having a job'. I never saw the money as "trickling down", although the amounts involved were so small they only amounted to a trickle. The concept needs to be revived today, and used to help the have-nots and those people enslaved in bottom-end jobs start their own niche businesses. That these people will need additional hand-holding to learn to keep books, find bookkeepers and CPAs, and suitable attorneys goes without saying, but the tax dollars they won't 'eat' from welfare and the tax dollars they will pay make it well worth the effort on the part of those who have already made their piles. To turn one's back and say "it's not my job" or "I don't have enough yet" is to be washichu - an opportunist; one who behaves as if s/he has no relatives and is greedy and ungenerous. In the ITI Ways, this is a mortal sin. Yes, truly. No bleeding-heart, throw-money-to-the-winds sort "ever", I picked those I would teach to hunt their own Holy Green Buffalo after analysis of many factors - chief among which was their attitude. I see attitude as the main indicator of whether or not someone is likely to repay a loan, for example. I don't get into "credit scores" at all; and no matter how odd it may sound to anyone who reads this, I don't have a credit score myself. Few of us ITI (Indigenous Turtle Islanders) do. If the prospects indicate to me that they don't make excuses and are not merely whiners, I have invested small amounts of money in their endeavors, with the understanding that we put everything on paper in simple language so there is no question of misunderstanding or bad memory later, when payback time comes. I get references, and check them out. Sometimes, I have wanted some kind of collateral; in some instances, I have not. For people without credit scores, the situation is different than for people who have always had access to credit and usually to others with money who would bail them out if an unforeseen snag occurred. In my own case, I have always put everything into "the company", so it has a credit score, while I - it's founder-n-ceo does not. I believe it's more important to have good reputation and references than a good credit score, and the mortgage mess of late proves me right. Kirt used to say, "The washichu would rent to a drug dealer because he had a good credit score, but not to us, because we don't. It's so stupid." The man was right, in my opinion. Moreover, over-reliance on artificially-derived scores of any kind locks a portion of the people out of the prosperity mechanisms of "the system". This is unacceptable. Unconscionable. Unforgivable, especially in the supposedly-richest country on earth, the land of the free and home of the brave. The truth makes the claim out to be mere hype. What is needed is a fund of money and expertise coupled with a mentoring program where people wanting to start their own businesses, but who lack credit cards, credit scores, and "bankable" collateral can get the help they need in return for a small percentage fee along with an easy repayment plan. People on welfare "eat" taxes, while people in their own businesses pay taxes. It's that simple. And by properly focussing such "trickles" of money and expertise, the small-business sector can again boost the economy world-wide and put a large dent in the shameful tales of corporate irresponsibility and nest-deathering that have become too normal in recent years. It's a win-win.

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