Paul W: Greed is good as Monopoly turns 80

Paul W. Smith

“Outta’ My Mind on a Saturday Moanin’”

It just rubbed me the wrong way when I read a story celebrating the 80th birthday of the longtime (obviously) family fun board game, Monopoly, one of the world’s most popular board games. That was fine. But the next sentence threw me and then upset me. How about you?

In describing the game, the writer referred to : “The greed driven game …”

I gotta tell you, that stopped me in my tracks.

In all the years that we have enjoyed playing Monopoly, not once did I think of it as a “greed driven” game.

Fun? Yes.

Educational? Yes.

Frustrating? Sure.

And for many of us, an early primer in basic capitalism.

And that’s when it struck me: We are surrounded by people who apparently don’t really understand capitalism, but are quite sure they don’t like it.

■ Gov. Rick Snyder joined me on my WJR morning show to discuss Michigan’s energy future and his long-term Reinventing Michigan plan. We talked about his school reform plan and how he is certain it does not violate the Michigan Constitution.

On the current adoption argument, his bottom line is finding as many children loving homes as we can. And clearly, with great importance to the governor and the state, the upcoming May 5 vote that will decide whether we (once and for all) start to fix our roads and bridges.

He was clearly pleased when I said that, after a tremendous amount of pushback making it unlikely the “Yes” vote had a chance of prevailing, I have sensed a very real shift, where people who were absolutely against the idea a month ago are, like it or not, realizing a “No” vote would all but assure us of even worse roads over the next two to three years.

■ Join us for the Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars Celebration luncheon this coming Wednesday on the campus of the University of Detroit-Mercy. Supreme Court Justice Brian Zahra will speak. “Detroit Voice,” an a capella group, will perform.

Local students will benefit.

Call (734) 455-2849 or visit

See you there.

Paul W. Smith is host of The Paul W. Smith Show on WJR-AM (760) from 5:30-9 a.m. Monday-Friday.