A Hand that Feeds

Last Update: 3 December, 2022

What this Issue is:

This is about people free giving help to other individuals and organizations in need for a good purpose.

What the Benefit is:

  1. Giving helps resources be redistributed to achieve much greater potential good (usually preservation of life) than they would if hoarded by one person. The marginal utility of a resource is often far greater in someone else's hands than yours, and wise giving can help it get into those hands.

  2. For example, your body may not biologically need your lunch at all to survive and be healthy, yet the same lunch could save someone else from dying of starvation. Giving your lunch to them makes sense to achieve the most good.

    Charitable giving is actually a process of investing resources to where the same resource will produce the most good result.

  3. Giving is often the only way for good but unconventional initiatives to have enough support to grow to their full potential. You can't expect Government or the Establishment to support unconventional initiatives because they threaten the conventions these groups rely on for retaining power.

  4. Giving stores up a treasure in heaven for you. It's an investment in your eternity, as your charity will certainly be to your credit in the Afterlife. In particular, the teachings of Christ encourage us to store up such 'treasures' in heaven:

  5. [19] Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
    [20] But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
    [21] For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
    (Holy Bible, KJV, Matthew 6:19-21)

What the Problem is:

Although charity is intent to achieve good, like Law and Government, Evil has shown at tendency to attempt to exploit charity to direct the free help towards evil results.

Benefactors need to be on guard about this so that their resources are not easily used for evil when they are intended for good.

Parts of the Problem:

  1. Failures on the Receiver Side:

    1. Fake Need

    2. The most obvious exploitation is to ask for help based on a fake or no need. Just because someone asks you for help doesn't mean they need it.

    3. Deliberate need

    4. Some people actually leave themselves in need despite all help by their own choice of the wrong order of priorities. For example, they many have money given it to them, even by the Government, but consistently choose to spend whatever money is given them on narcotics/alcohol/cigarettes.

      Letting the need remain supports them asking for help again. As long as the need remains real, and as obvious as possible, they have evidence to ask for more help.

    5. Misuse of Medium of Exchange:

    6. A medium of exchange (money) is often the most asked gift, but it is also the easiest abused, precisely because it is a medium of exchange, and can be used as easily for the purpose asked as for any other purpose.

      The evil strategy is to ask for money based on some need, and simply use the money for something other than asked.

      Many people like to give to charitable institutions for this reason, but they can also misuse the money. For example, if someone collects $50 towards a charitable institution to feed the hungry, unknown to you $10 of that might go as commission to the asker, which might be fair for the asker's work, except that's not what they money was asked and given for. And that's before the money even reaches spending by the institution, which can be completely different than why it's asked.

    7. Misuse of Non-Monetary Help

    8. Even non-monetary, ie. direct, help can be misused towards an evil result. For example, you might give something that's not money (like a train ticket) and they try to sell it for money. If they are given lodging they may exploit the relief of that need to devote themselves all the more to narcotics (rather than try to better themselves or be independent), creating a worse problem than before.

    9. Government Support

    10. Policy-based Government support of people in need tends to fail to produce good because once it is a standing policy then the assistance is regarded as a right and consumed without gratitude and with no intent to ever come off of it. In fact, the incentive is to demand more or complain about imperfections as not the assistance you are entitled to, or not enough for the comfort you deserve. Example article: Ontario MPPs go on 'social assistance diet' to show why ODSP needs to be increased

    11. A failure of responsibility.

      Those who intend to abuse charity arent' recognizing the responsibiltiy to use it for what it was asked for, as well as to stop being a burden to others.

    12. A failure of gratitude.

    13. When humans and animals tend to find any source of help, they tend to come back to that source again for more help rather than use it to be self-reliant as fast as possible.

      It's just easier to take free resources than earn them yourself, so the tendency is to try to take whatever else can be gotten free.

      Morally, the same person is the last person you should come back to for more free help, because it suggests you're not grateful for the help before, but are now expecting that help as part of your new support plan.

  2. Failures on the Giver Side

    1. Disbelief

    2. This is a fault on the side of potential helpers, where they justify not helping based on their belief that either the need is not serious or the intent is not good. For example, anyone who asks for help can be easily dismissed as simply not wanting to work, and although this is easier the less obvious the reality of the need is, it can be done even for someone who is shot, because belief is an arbitrary choice requiring no truth.

      By sheer disbelief, many in serious but less obvious need with good intent have been abused instead of helped.

    3. Resolutions

    4. Sometimes potential givers who have been exploited in the past resolve themselves to never help anyone again (rather than give more wisely) and this makes sense to them.

    5. Superficiality

    6. Sometimes potential givers do test the need and intent but do so superficially, taking literally any possible justification as 'proof' that either the need is not real or the intent is evil. It's far easier not to help, and when people disover any way to justify that, sometimes they are too quick and determined to cling to it.

    7. Tax Receipt Prioritization

    8. Many insitutions are permitted by the Government to issue receipts for donations of a kind which the giver can use to obtain a credit on their income tax. The credit is usually very significant, for example a third of the donation amount.

      These receipts are prized by givers because they can 'have their cake and eat it to', giving the amount they were supposed to give, but getting this benefit back as a bonus. It seems very wise stewardship. For this benefit many givers seem to only give where they can get a tax receipt, as their first priority in selecting where to give.

      The problem is that the right to issue these receipts is bestowed by Government, and it's often quite conditional, such that the most aggressive and effective organizations for the public good are often excluded from the right to issue these receipts because they either are critical of certain Government policies or the political parties which have adopted policies they disagree with as part of their permanent political platform.

      For example, in Canada, no organization of charitiable tax status is permitted to encourage the support for or opposition to any political party (see here). This means that if a political party were to make it their policy to kill everyone to combat climate change, a Church with charitable tax status is not permitted to communicate opposition to that party or support for any opposing party.

      In practice, fear of losing charitable tax status seems to be why, for example, Churches rarely speak out against any Government policy, not even abortion, and quickly close their doors on any Government emergency order to do so.

      Charitable tax status is a Government tool which encourages givers to only give to organizations which support Government policies or at least will not criticize them.

      That's often not the best type of organization, for the good, to give to.

What the Truth Is:

Charity should only be given when both the need and intent are strong, not merely the need. Otherwise it cannot come to a good result and the resources are much more likely to achieve good in the hands of their current owner.

Need and intent must be tested, and when someone's life is at stake, the evaluation should be done to a certainty.

At the very least, once you know that your help has been used for evil, you must not give again (unless there is some clear reason to believe that won't happen again). You must not knowingly support evil.

What the Threat Is:

Until it is stopped, charity abuse causes resources which are given for good to be used for evil, while the most good causes remain starved for support.

Indications that You are Being Exploited:

  1. The recipient's supposed need for help increases (rather than decreases) with the help they are given. This is often because of their intent to exploit rather than use help for their improvement and independence.

  2. The recipient shows no concern for the sacrifices you make to give them that help, or to help you if you fall into trouble. If the only concern they show is how to get more out of you, because they are evil. They don't care if you die unnecessarily helping them except that their help might get cut off.

  3. You can see that your help is not coming to any noticable good result.

  4. The person asking for help only wants money and rejects direct helps. This is a sure sign they intend to use it for another reason than they ask.

  5. The person becomes more controlling and emotionally abusive towards you. It means they want to keep you as their slave.

How to Do Charity Right:

  1. Remember that the reason to give charity is not merely because someone or some cause is in need, but because it seems that your resources applied there would do much more good than the same resources to another purpose.

  2. Broaden your definition of 'charity' to include any organization purposed for the free public good. It could be a soup kitchen, a news publisher, a political party, a hungry person on the street, a needy person in your extended family, or an activist you know personally. Some of these you won't get a tax receipt for. For our purposes, let's call these 'for-good' causes.

  3. Make it your responsibiltiy to not only give but find where the gift should accomplish the most good. Investigate the cause you give to, and insist on at least an agreement of how the help should be used, rather than entirely at their discretion. Too many people, even in true need, would rather use what you give them for drugs rather than help themselves out of need.

  4. Give to the most effective (for good) initiatives first, and where you get a tax receipt second. Where your donation gets you a tax receipt must be a strictly secondary priority. If the tax receipt is your priority, rather than most good cause, you tend to give to mediocre causes while the best causes remain starved for funding. That does not fulfill the charitable purpose. If you care so much about a tax receipt, it would be better that you discount your donation by the amount of the expected tax credit, and give the rest to the best movement, than to give it all to a less deserving cause for reason of their tax receipt.

  5. Never turn your back on any crisis or appeal of anyone else until and unless you have disqualified the appeal. We have a duty to help others in need if we can.

  6. Balance your suspicions about the truth of their need. It's morally important not only to protect yourself from abuse (for which someone could simply stop giving to anyone) but also to ensure that someone who is actually in dire and innocent need does get help.

  7. Look for Evidence of how they use help. For example, learn to reconize the burned fingers resulting from chronic abuse of crack cocaine. If someone is begging for money for food and they are smoking a pack of cigarettes you know that they don't care about their health and they probably won't be using the money on food.

  8. Prefer to give monthly, with an automated system, to the best charities doing the best work. This is easier for you and helps them to plan their future with more reliability.

  9. Don't give a medium of exchange if you can possibly avoid it. Often offering direct help to an alleged problem, rather than giving the money asked for, will result in a refusal, indicating that the need is actually a lie and the money is intended to be used for another person.

  10. Don't give again if you know (for any reason) your help was abused last time. Wilful misuse of your help is an ungrateful betrayal, and your resources must not be put in the control of that evil person again.

  11. Look for evidence of the need. For example, if they are fat, they might be hungry but they don't need food enough that they should beg for it yet.

  12. Look for evidence of their misuse of resources. Someone begging for money for 'something to eat' but is smoking cigarettes spends their money on cigarettes before food, or at the very least doesn't care about their health anyway.

  13. Insist on an agreed purpose for the help. Someone asking for money, who then uses it for drugs, is not betraying you, because you didn't ask what the money was for.

  14. Pray about it. If you pray, God will reveal the truth of the situation in time.

  15. Never allow them to gain any control of the regulation of your help to them. Those who intend to exploit the genereous try to gain any kind of control to do it. Resist that control being accepted or established.

  16. Always stop help when it becomes clear that either the recipient is evil in a related way (no one but God is entirely good), or it is not coming to good because of the recipient's evil intent. If you continue giving help to someone who you know is not using it for good, you are complicit in that evil and you consent to that exploitation.

  17. Beware any group which teaches you that you should give all of your charity money to them, and/or dictates how much of your income to give to them. You give for good, and for God, and there is no moral reason this must be tied to any one Earthly organization, even if it's a religious organization, and any teaching of that is immoral. For example, if you are a Christian, definitely you should help your Church to pay its expenses (at least what you consume) but beyond that, you need to figure out where your charity will accomplish the most good. If that's your Church great, but if that's not your Church then it doesn't serve God to give it there.

  18. Predetermine a fixed percentage of your income to give. Ten percent of your take-home income is suggested as a minimum. This makes your giving far less painful and in a regular proportion. In fact you nearly always have money ready to go for others' emergencies in this model.

  19. Listen to God for what He wants you to give to.

  20. Balance your giving between sectors. For example, you could give some to news organziations and some to food programs.


You can't expect to never have your charity abused in an environment where others may be actively trying to deceive you and you often need to decide without a thorough investigation.

As long as you gave with intent that the gift would be used for the greater good, at least your reward is secured on a spiritual level.

Options on how to give:

  1. Give money to for-good institutions which you confirm the quality (to-cause) of by your own research. Research them carefully because although all of them seem to pretend the money goes to people in desperate need, some often goes to the person who collected it, some for internal salaries, and some to woke and other controversial ends you might not agree with: facts which tend to be more hidden but discoverable. One telltale sign is the level of truth they are operating on, which you can perceive from their writings. An example of a website where you can begin your research is Charity Intelligence Canada.

  2. Help someone in your extended family, friends, or neighbours. If they're outside of your legal responsibility to care for, then helping them is morally considered charity, and it's moral to tend to those nearer to you before those farer away (all other things being equal).

  3. Click to give. Yes, you can give so painlessly it's as easy as setting your homepage to a free click-to-give site and clicking once a day (for example). One such site is: GreaterGood

Some facts which may surprise you about established charities (in development)

Back to Homepage

Flag Counter