Imagine the face of the poorest and weakest man

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“Recall the face of the poorest and weakest man you have seen, and ask yourself if this step you contemplate is going to be any use to him.”

― Mahatma Gandhi

Fredrik deBoer has a tremendous inverse of this [1], which he calls the Rich Uncle Pennybags test:

The question is, does your next proposed political action hurt Rich Uncle Pennybags? Does it threaten his station at all? Could it meaningfully reduce his advantage? I’m not saying everything that you do has to pass the test. I’m not saying that there aren’t meaningful, constructive types of political engagement that fail the test. But I am saying that a left-wing movement that devotes enormous time, effort, and attention to actions that fail the test risks no longer being a left-wing movement at all. I’m saying that a left-wing that constantly fails the Rich Uncle Pennybags test is precisely the kind of left-wing movement that establishment power likes: about symbolism over substance, about the individual rather than the masses, about elevating minorities in the ranks of a corrupt system rather than changing the system, about being good rather than doing good.