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Daily News23-06-2010
Billionaires Give Away Bonanza
What would you do if you were the child of a billionaire; spend your time drinking champers on your yacht, party at some trendy nightspot or write a self-help book? Well, if you are Peter Buffett, son of the billionaire investor Warren Buffet, the answer is obvious - write a book. Peter has just published a book entitled "Life is What You Make it: Finding Your Own Path to Fulfilment". In this he underlines the importance of self-respect and pursuing passions and accomplishments rather than thoughtlessly following society`s preoccupation with material riches. Peter claims; I am my own person and I know what I have accomplished in my lifethis isn`t about wealth or fame or money or any of that stuff, it is actually about values and what you enjoy and finding something you love doing. Peter also warns his readers about a problem suffered by the offspring of mega-rich parents. He claims they can fall victim to what Peters dad Warren Buffett has called "...a silver dagger in your back...which leads to a sense of entitlement and a lack of personal achievement". In his book Peter explains the idea of `entitlement` further; "Entitlement is the worst thing ever and I see entitlement coming in many guises...anybody who acts like they deserve something `just because`, is a disaster." Peter`s views seem to have been shaped by his dad who made his fortune with insurance and investment company Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Buffett Senior, along with Microsoft`s Bill Gates, are asking hundreds of billionaire Americans to give away at least 50% of their wealth to charity. They have named their campaign the Giving Pledge and are asking those who sign up to give away at least half their fortune either during their lifetime or after they die. Furthermore, the scheme suggests that they should publicly state their intention with a letter explaining their decision. Warren Buffett has said that so far about 20% of his Berkshire Hathaway shares have been distributed to charities and that he will continue to distribute 4% of the shares he retains every year. Whilst the amounts involved seem substantial, the Buffett`s will not be living in poverty after these donations. Warren has already stated that the pledge to donate so much of his wealth would not severely affect his life..."I will continue to live in a manner that gives me everything that I could possibly want".
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