Sunday, August 12, 2007

Reputation is commonly measured by the acre.

Reputation is commonly measured by the acre.

In the day and age when most wealth was in the form of land ownership this saying would be readily understood.

We all know people whose standing in a community is assessed not on their abilities or achievements but on the wealth that they own. There is an observable tendency for people to hero worship success and ascribe great worth to those who have acquired the things we all tend to envy. Inherited wealth might fall into the hands of a naturally able person who is given a good education by wise parents and this can lead to a flourishing of someone's talents, albeit as a result of privilege. It can also fall into the hands of unsuitable persons who will abuse the luck that fortune has bestowed.

The individual who succeeds on their own merit is not immune to folly either. A singer, for example, might become fabulously wealth by using their God given talent and the masses will wish to follow their styles, clothes, haircuts etc. and regard their every utterance as gospel. But very often they are one-trick ponies and their opinions and activities outside their one area of competence are no better and probably worse than average.

In assessing a person's ability it is important to go on the facts and not judge by appearances or possessions.

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