America Ranks First in Giving

Protesters exchange fists, not gifts


This is a rush transcript from "The Five," December 26, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: Well, the spirit of giving was in full view Sunday, at least at Occupy Nashville, where protesters exchanged gifts, or rather fists. Well, I guess this beats watching "Diehard" for the 10th time. Of course this isn't how all the protesters spent the holidays. I'm sure some of them made it home to lecture their parents on corporate greed after receiving a new iPhone for Christmas. Aww, that hurts.

But it's a worthy contrast to a brand new report by the Charities Aid Foundation, which ranked the U.S. first in the giving, while the rest of the world gives 1 percent or less of their national income to charity, America doubles that. That's, like, 2 percent.

The point is simple -- despite bad times, we're still the most generous place on earth. Yes, we're not just pretty faces. And despite a protest movement that labels capitalism an engine of greed, it's through that engine that wealth can flow best and into the hands of those who need it.

A free market spreads the wealth far better than a European state were dependency trumps charity.

And that's the opposite of good will, depending on others when you don't need to, which is like occupying a park and demanding free food from its vendors.

Anyway, I don't like to brag about my charity, but I spend thousands of dollars a year on young women working their way through their dental hygienist school, at least that's what I tell the IRS.


GUTFELD: Kimberly, why is the rest of the world so stingy and why are we so awesome? Is it because they're more evolved?

GUILFOYLE: Finally, cutting to the chase, exactly.

We are a very generous country and we help everybody. We're the first country to go in need in terms of humanitarian aid, whether the country needs help with military assistance, food, all of the above. And I think it's about time we got a little bit credit in a goodwill sort of way.

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: And the point on that is that if you think seven years ago this week was the tsunami in Southeast Asia, which killed hundreds of thousands of people, and America was first on the scene working with its partners, but we certainly gave the most aid into the most, out of all of them.

But it was interesting. I thought -- an article over the weekend about Haiti. And only 43 percent of the aid that's been pledged to Haiti has materialized. America has made good on it, but the rest of the world doesn't necessarily always follow-through.

GUTFELD: But isn't it because you can't trust a lot of people in power in these countries, once they get the money, right, Bob?

BOB BECKEL, CO-HOST: Yes. Listen, there's a few things going on this. Number one, I will let it pass because it's the New Year and holiday season, that Occupy Wall Street has done nothing the last two weeks. You found one piece of videotape --

GUTFELD: I did, I admit.

BECKEL: -- and turned it into a negative.

GUTFELD: I admit.

BECKEL: Good job, you and -- never mind.

Let's put it this way. There's reasons for this. One is when this country was formed, it was a frontier country, and people helped each other as they moved out, and it was also formed as a place for refugees from persecution of religion. Religious groups, no matter what religious groups, they tend to want to help each other.

And the other thing is, frankly, I think that the American people -- I don't care if you're rich or very poor, that have these feeling that -- particularly those by the way who were touched by the Great Depression, have a sense that they need to give back.

I think it's wonderful. I think it says a lot about our country. It's a wonderful place. I don't think it's going to slow down.

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: Where does the world turn when they need help? They always turn to us. We are always there to help.

GUILFOYLE: We always answer the call.

BOLLING: Answer the call.

GUTFELD: Sometimes, I'd drive around at nights trying to help people.

GUILFOYLE: That's called stalking.

PERINO: The British are quite generous, though.

GUTFELD: They send a lot of Brits here.

BECKEL: You know, I was in the Peace Corps in the Philippines, and they had Japanese peace corps, British peace corps, Australian peace corps, and we outnumbered everybody totaled by two, sort of like what we do in the competition --

PERINO: But we can afford to, and I think that's the other thing, that we can afford to have people be able to join the Peace Corps and go.

And if you're in a country where you think the government should take care of people, then you're not going to be as inclined, if you don't have enough discretionary income, you're not going to be as inclined to give more of it way. It's a different system. I think our system is better.

GUTFELD: Hey, do we have time for to roll through the tape of Nike shoes?


GUTFELD: All right. Nike retro Air Jordan sneakers went on for sale all around the country.

BOLLING: A hundred eighty bucks.

GUTFELD: A hundred eighty bucks. Now, apparently, he was a baseball player from the '60s, Michael Jordan. And people are beating the heck out of each other.

I want to go to you, Kimberly, because I think you understand the hysteria. You love shoes.


GUTFELD: I've seen you do this at shoe sales.

GUILFOYLE: Yes. That happened most recently at Saks. In fact, it's so large and fabulous, it has its own zip code. I bet you didn't know that.

GUTFELD: I know that. It's sad that I know that.

PERINO: Did you know that Air Jordan are popular this year? I mean, you have a 13-year-old son. So, I want -- this came out of the blue to me.

BOLLING: It's strange time, too, right? It wasn't proceeding the whole holiday season, it was Friday.

PERINO: I guess the styles come back around.

GUTFELD: I'm buying a DVD "Friends" exclusive collection.

BECKEL: Has anybody else considered the fact that Michael Jordan has been out of basketball for a long time? There's lot more -- he maybe the most fabulous --

PERINO: Like Kris Humphries.

BECKEL: Yes. I mean, why Michael Jordan still gets that kind of fervor?

GUILFOYLE: Don't say that to Kim Jong Un.


BOLLING: Whoever gets their hands on this, they're not using them. They're putting them on eBay.

GUTFELD: Yes, they're selling for twice the price.

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