I haven't voted in the poll because I'm not sure where I'd fit.
To be honest I probably would donate $14, but in a confusing way that doesn't mean I'm going to.
The opportunity would need to be easily presented to me at a time when I have cash immediately available. I can't donate it with a credit card because I don't use one, and probably the easiest way to get me to donate anything is to come up to me and get it.
I wonder if charities would (collectively) get more money if there was a more organised way that people could donate to them. Where I am, we've recently elected a more socialist-leaning government than we used to have with obvious controversy coming from people in the higher tax brackets.
Shortly after the election, the local edition of Readers Digest ran a poll asking people if they would be willing to pay higher taxes to help the poorer socioeconomic groups. It was a badly worded question that should have asked if people thought everyone should have to pay higher taxes. It didn't though, and it quickly had the government boasting about this majority of Readers Digest readers who thought taxes should go up.
I guess I take a slightly libertarian view, but what annoys me is that if people want to spend more money to help others, there are thousands of charities holding their hands out. The problem is that it's not always convenient and automatic to give them money in the same way that it's convenient (and automatic) to pay taxes to the government. Most people I know don't budget for charity, they just take it out of their pocket change to a collector on the street on Friday morning in exchange for a sticker so other collectors won't bother them as much.
There's a good reason why major charities themselves don't like giving money directly to governments and instead try to give it straight to the people on the ground who actually need it. Giving money as higher taxes on the assumption that a government will use it to help people is no guarantee that it'll ever get there.
I think if governments in western countries want to help people more in their own and other countries, they'd do it better by helping charities collect money from people more directly. This could be done by the governments' Internal Revenue Service collecting optional charity funds separately. Any other ideas on how to make charity donations convenient?
jesterzog Fight the light