The whole concept of the welfare state rests on the presumption that charity alone is insufficient to provide a social safety net. This concept can be disproven in the following way:
Change the tax code so that charitable contributions are a tax credit rather than a deduction. And such a tax credit should not be limited either. That way you have effectively said that instead of funneling contributions to the “public good” through government, you have given the ability of each individual’s conscience to decide how the safety net is funded. What better way to enact the will of the people in determining what social safety net is desired?
If such a proposal where enacted, you would see wealthy individuals open their pocketbooks in ways not seen before.
And the case could be made that any who oppose such a change have shown their true colors, and that in fact they are no friend of those in need of assistance.