It’s story time!
Once upon a time, there was a man who was hiking in the hills and he came upon a piece of parchment folded and nailed to an old pine tree. He grabbed it and opened it up. It was a map called “Climb Your Way to Fortune.”
The man began to study the map. To his astonishment, he saw that there was an enormous treasure of $5 Million dollars at the end of the path shown on the map. However, the end was at the top of a mountain. There were rivers and valleys he had to cross, but the most daunting thing in the way of that treasure was that tall mountain to climb. There was also one warning on the map: “Beware of the demon, Big G!”
Not wanting to pass up a good thing, the man began to follow the map over those hills and through the valleys, crossing rivers and crags along the way. He was getting tire but finally, he reached the base of the tall mountain.
Just as he was about to start his daring climb, he noticed a line of people to his left. He decided to investigate. He stuffed the map in his pocket and went to one of the people in line and asked, “What is this line for?”
The person, who seemed rather jaded to what was going on around him, answered in a rough voice, “It’s the money line.”
“Money line?” queried the man.
“Yup,” responded another person in line. This one looked a little more enthusiastic. “All you have to do is stand in line until you make it to the front of the line and you get free money!”
The man was seriously intrigued. Why should he struggle and risk his life to climb a mountain to get a treasure when all he has to do is stand in line?
“How much money do you get?” he asked.
“$500!” exclaimed the enthusiastic person.
The man then asked, “What then?”
“Well then,” the person replied, “you stand in line again to get another $500.”
“How long does it take to get to the front of the line?” the man asked.
“About a month,” said the person.
“That doesn’t sound very exciting or rewarding…” the man started, but the first one he spoke to, the jaded person, interrupted him.
“IT’S NOT!” said the jaded person, “I have been standing in this line, over and over for years, and all I get is $500 a month.”
“You just don’t see how good this is?” the enthusiastic person chided in, “All you have to do is get back in line and a sweet $500 is yours. Even if you get sick, there is another line for you to wait in that will take care of you AND make sure you get your $500!”
The man began to get even more curious, “What about food?”
“Provided for you just little bit further along the line,” the enthusiastic person answered.
The man was quite curious so he walked up along the line to see what was really at the head. As he walked he saw all sorts of people; some happy, some sad, some strong and some barely clinging on to life. He even saw the place for food and thought to himself that it seemed a rather boring commissary with nothing to excite the palate. But at least the basic staples are there.
He finally reached the head of the line where, sure enough, there was a tall and large man, sitting at a desk, reaching into his right pants pocket and handing out cash in increments of $500. And when each person received their cash, they seemed to have a small show of relief in their eyes.
Just then, the man noticed the name plate on the desk of the big man. It said: “Mr. Big G.”
The man pulled the map from his pocket and looked at the warning he remembered from earlier to confirm his fear: “Beware of the demon, Big G!” He quickly crammed the map back into his pocket.
The man started to back away, but just then Big G called out to him, “Sir, I will help you if you go back to the end of the line and wait your turn.”
“I was just looking around to see what all this was,” the man responded shakily.
Big G retorted, “Aw, you don’t have to worry about any of this. Just let me do everything so you can get in line to get your fair share.”
“Aren’t you worried about running out?” asked the man, pointing to Big G’s right pocket.
“Not at all,” motioned Big G to his left pocket where he pulled out a large number of bills and put them into his right pocket. “I’ll never run out as long as you people continue to swear an allegiance to me when you get your cash. Now get to the back of the line, sir. NOW!”
Not wanting to get into a conflict with a demon, the man walked to the back of the line. As he neared the back, the jaded person grabbed the man’s arm and pointed to his pocket, “What is that paper you have in your pocket?”
The man told him about coming across the map earlier in his travels. He showed it to the person.
“Ah…” sighed the jaded person, “I used to have a map like that too, but when I got up to the mountain and noticed the line, I decided to try the line out. But after I received my first $500, I lost the map and haven’t seen it since. So I had no choice but to keep getting back in line to survive. But it’s not too late for you! Stay out of this line and follow that map to fortune! You can do it…. But even if you don’t get the treasure right away, keep trying for it and never give up.”
The man was saddened by the jaded person’s circumstances and promised himself that he would do his best to help if and when he could.
He walked toward the mountain again and pulled out the map. Just as he was about to climb, POOF! The demon, Big G. showed up.
“Where are you going?” he asked the man.
“I am going to climb to try to get my treasure.”
Big G laughed in a haughty manner and said,” You don’t need to do that. Don’t you know that if you stand in that line over to the left, you will get $500 a month and free healthcare?” He paused, but realizing that the man wasn’t interested, Big G tried another tactic. “Besides, if you try to climb and get a treasure, I can’t help you, it may take years, you may lose footing and fall, even just a little bit. And NO ONE who is already at the top wants you there…. So why don’t you get in line and let me take care of you?”
The man thought and looked up the mountain, noticing that there were definitely obstacles and even risks and dangers on the way to the top. But then he remembered that the jaded person said “your treasure” to him. There was treasure that was his waiting on him. No one else could have it.
“Sorry Mr. Big G, I don’t believe you and from what I can tell, you have no power over me unless I get in line. I’ll take my chances,” said the man sternly.
“You’ll be sorry…” sang Big G in a taunting tone and he vanished from the man’s sight.
The mountain waited on him, so the man read his map and began to climb. He got about a third of the way up fairly easily by studying and doing odd jobs here and there for a little bit of money. He then noticed that others, who are also trying to reach the top, had opened stores and shops to help themselves and others obtain resources to better their chances of reaching the summit. The man knew that he would never survive this arduous journey unless he could make a better wage. He asked one of the shop owners for a job but had to keep asking shop owners until he found work. After his first month of working, he made $300. He immediately thought of the money line, especially when he realized he would have to spend some of his money on medicine for the cold he was catching.
After a year at his job, the man got a raise to $550 and started to get benefits through his job to take care of some of his healthcare costs. A few more years and a few more raises later, he decided that he wanted to run his own shop. He began to invest some of his money and started earning dividends and interest. Soon he actually had enough to start his own business. He opened his shop by himself and really struggled at first – only $250 a month for his take home pay. After a little while at the job, he got more customers and was even able to hire someone else on the path to treasure to help them out. He was making about $5000 a month – 10 times as much as those in the money line were getting.
Just then Big G showed up on the mountain and told the man that the bottom third of the mountain had sworn allegiance to the demon. And in order for the man to continue his business, he needed to pay Big G $3500 per month.
Suddenly our man realized where Big G was getting all that money to pay out those in the money line.
So, the man worked even harder to be able to make his business profitable, on top of what Big G took. He lad to let go of one of his employees and reduce his take home pay just to break even for a while. Soon, the man was able to hire that one person back and make a decent profit again. But each time he made more, Big G showed up to take more.
He then decided that he wanted to continue his journey up the mountain. So he sold his business for a nice profit, paid his share to Big G, and started to climb again.
Along the way, he used part of his money to survive and part to invest in other businesses to help them survive. His investments continued to pay off.
About three-fourths of the way to the top of the mountain, the man realized that he was making $500,000 a month! That equals $6 million a year! Knowing that he still had $5 million waiting on him, he began give some of his earnings to charity and started a foundation. He then remembered the promise he made himself about the jaded person at the bottom of the mountain.
The man found a few others like him who were interested in helping others out. One man owned a large helicopter so they decided to travel to the bottom of the mountain. Once there a few of them went to the money line. The jaded person was still there, a few years older, and the enthusiastic person was there as well – but he didn’t look that enthusiastic any more.
“Do you remember me?” the man asked the jaded person.
The person nodded then bowed his head and asked, “So you made it to the top?”
“Not yet,” replied the man, “But the treasure is nothing compared to what I am earning now. Wouldn’t you like to get out of this line?”
“I am stuck here,” answered the person, “Big G will never let me out.
“You CAN leave the line,” stated the man, “but you will have to give up your monthly income and healthcare.”
“I need to survive,” panicked the man. “How will I get food and other things I need?”
The man had the answer, “Get out of line and have faith in yourself. You can climb the mountain from the bottom on your own or come work for one of my shops. You will not make as much pay at first but my foundation will provide the difference for a limited time. By then you will start to earn enough.” He paused and then stated, “You told me I could do it and I did. I am telling you that you can do it…. And you will. You can either freely work for your treasure or submissively scrape by for the rest of your life.”
Some others in the line overheard the man and gathered around. “What about the rest of us?” another person asked. Another chortled, “That’s easy for you to say, you have money and don’t need to worry about surviving.”
“It wasn’t easy, but I did start out with no money,” replied the man. “Now, I can only take a few of you as we only have a certain number of seats available, but if you don’t come with us, I suggest you leave this line and start your climb to your treasure,” the man responded. “If you want to work for me, let’s go.”
About four others followed the man and jaded person. And a few more actually left the money line and went to the base of the mountain.
POOF! Big G appeared. “WHAT ARE YOU DOING? WHERE ARE YOU ALL GOING?”
“Some with me and some on their own,” replied the man. “They no longer wish to be controlled by you.”
“Controlled???” Big G shot back. “I am helping them survive. They have money, food and healthcare.”
“But no freedom to earn more doing something they like to do, no freedom to try and enjoy more exciting and exotic foods, and no freedom to control their own healthcare needs,” retorted the man. “I can help them start on that path to get those things themselves.”
Big G huffed, “But only I know what’s best for them! They don’t even know. I am giving them an equal pay, food, and healthcare and all they have to do is stay in my line and swear allegiance to me.” He then turned to the people in line and told them that these rich people didn’t really care about them and only wanted them to be poor. He told them that they would be slaves to the rich.
The man proudly stated, “I made it without you because I know what’s best for me. I was able to earn pay that well rewarded my efforts. I chose my own house, buy as much of the food I like to eat, and pay for my own healthcare where I don’t have to wait on anyone’s approval to be treated. When I started my climb, a wealthier person than I hired me to get me started. I was a slave to no one!” he turned to everyone in line, “This is a demon! Big G has no real power over anyone who doesn’t give that power to him.”
Big G knew that he couldn’t win so he walked along the line to his desk, telling those that stayed in line that if they stayed with him, he would double the monthly pay to $1000. Many people were excited about that and there were many who just resigned themselves to the line not wanting to try to make it on their own.
The man was saddened for those that stayed, but proud that others would start the climb to their success, which would even help him better his businesses and be able to help more people.
The man continued his climb and was glad that there were others climbing up behind him. When he finally reached the top, the man found the treasure waiting on him. But he was already doing so well, he donated it to charity!
I would rather be free to pursue what I wanted how I wanted that to have to keep going back to the Big Government for a trifle here and there and just barely scraping by.
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