Originally Posted by Midpack
If they give away billions to make the world a better place, that's generous/admirable - period. ...
Allow me to address this one more specifically.
Is it 'generous'? In my view, not particularly. Semantically, one could argue that it is generous by definition. But from my meaning of the word, no, not particularly.
It gets to that concept of 'marginal utility'. Z has so much, the marginal utility of all those B's is near zero. It quite literally is worth near nothing to him. So is it being generous to give away something that is of little value to you?
Let's say I have some old nick-nack in my basement. It has no sentimental value to me, and it has no cash value on the open market. I meant to toss it in the trash last time I cleaned up, but I missed it.
A friend comes over, who happens to be the only collector in the world of these particular knick-knacks, and it would complete a missing part of his collection. It would mean a lot to him to own it, but it means nothing to me. He sees it, explains it to me, and I say "take it".
Was my 'donation' generous or admirable?
All those $B's are like knick-knacks to Z. That's what we are trying to get across.