Principled Profit: The Good Business Blog

Musings on the world-wide movement for ethical business, frugal marketing, and how honesty, integrity, and quality combine with deep relationship building to create business success. By the originator of the Ethical Business Pledge campaign and award-winning author of Principled Profit: Marketing That Puts People First and five other books

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Thursday, December 01, 2005

I Have Nothing Against Getting Rich, But This is Offensive!

According to the NY Daily News, military contractor David H. Brooks just spent--are you sitting down--ten million dollars on his daughter's Bat Mitzvah! Brooks says the figures are exaggerated, but he doesn't deny that it involved private jets, multiple performances by rock superstars, and a very expensive swanky New York venue.

A Bat Mitzvah is a religious coming-of-age ceremony. A teenager (usually--I've been to the Bat Mitzvah of a woman in her 70s) leads a section of the prayer service, reads from the Torah (the five original books of the Bible) and chants a Haftorah (a section from one of the later Old Testament books such as the Prophets). Usually there's a party afterward. It should not be about ostentatious displays of wealth and one-upping your neighbors.

With several hundred people attending, renting one venue for the ceremony/reception and another to prepare the food (an elaborate full luncheon), hiring a couple of workers, my daughter and two friends became Bat Mitzvah a couple of years ago. If memory serves me correctly, this whole event cost around $1800, or $600 for each participating family. And it was a great event--I daresay probably a good deal more spiritually meaningful than this obscene $10 million blowout. I can only imagine what her wedding will be like. Maybe Dennis Kozlowski, disgraced CEO of Tyco known for his lavish parties, will do the catering.


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