My criticism with his response is that philanthropy distorts economic resources through a similar mechanism that consumption does.
That is, by dictate.
I believe in the idea that people who are affected by decisions made should have a say in those decisions. This is the value of democracy.
And just like consumption of fine wine and jewelry distorts the economy to produce more of those things, philanthropy moves vast economic resources for what I would call “the pet projects of philanthropists”. Typically the people affected by the philanthropic expenditures have no say. More often than not, no democracy processes take place.
A king who lives a modest lifestyle, who spends all his wealth on what HE thinks is just and good, is still a king. And I hold contempt for his arrogance.