Category Archives: Society

Greed


Why do we desire more than we need?

A car is a car, yet some must have the most expensive to validate their existence. Such cars would not be made if we did not, as individuals, crave attention or simply desired ‘the best’.

Do we, in effect, just want the best we can buy or is it the status that our greed desires? Transport provides the same function, with various degrees of comfort, until more comfort is unnecessarily luxurious. Then it becomes greed, or simply the desire to possess the best.

The best. This also relates to homes, jobs, clothes, food, all items we purchase. If we were to remove the top end of luxury and place that monetary value into the hands of the almost four billion poor we would progress as a society.

For some, progress as an individual is more valuable.

Who notices the luxury more than the owner? If it is not recognised by anyone else then its desirability reduces. What does this say about us? Do we truly pursue ‘quality’ as some philosophers state and does this intrude into personal space, or is our desire for art all encompassing.

Perhaps we require recognition for our efforts, inheritance or luck to place us above others in our world view.

Unfortunately the ‘others’, apart from a very brief moment of recognition, do not desire the same level of luxury as a permanent quality. Therefore the money used to impress is mostly wasted.

Purchase luxury for your sake, judge it for yourself, and only purchase it if your life is further fulfilled by its presence.

If luxury has no more meaning for you, assist those who will never experience it to provide them with the basics of life to achieve true fulfilment.

Corruption exists where power exists


To say otherwise is naivety in the extreme.

Of course there are people who refuse to give in and shine like beacons, but unfortunately they are far too few.

If you want something done, and have enough money, then it is done. Simple.

Why are we so surprised when corruption is ‘uncovered’? Banking Royal Commissions, investigations into top legal firms, political donations, misuse of public money, misuse of public credit cards…it is announced in the news almost daily yet the shock value never gets old.

Perhaps it is because we want, so desperately, to believe that we have the same chance as the very rich in life, that we can get by on our merit alone. Some indeed can, and do, but it is more because of luck and timing than their good intentions.

Corruption is everywhere, at every level of our society. Fortunately it is nowhere near as bad as other countries, such as India or China, but it is there. Just below the surface, ready to emerge for the right amount of money or power.

So why are we surprised when it is exposed? Is it just jealousy that we do not have the money required to bribe someone and make our own lives easier? Possibly.

Or possibly it is because we, the un-rich, cling to this notion of a Fair Go. We struggle so much, through so much and somehow over so much in life we simply cannot stand the thought of someone using a chequebook to accomplish what it takes a pound of flesh for us to do the same.

So when it is revealed as being so easy for others, just the stroke of a pen, we recoil in horror once again. Even though we all hear stories, sometimes witness it firsthand, we strive to believe people are good.

Unfortunately all are not, and the wealthier they are the more they can ‘accomplish’.

Why is life so much easier when you have a lot of money? When you answer that question truthfully you will realise why it should not shock you anymore.

Status


For centuries mankind has striven, fought, argued and made alliances for status.

The wealthy measure their status by what they own, what label it has, how many they possess and if it is the latest available. Unfortunately they are completely unaware the non-wealthy never judge them in these terms, but by what they do with their money other than buying goods the non-wealthy would never be able to afford.

The wealthy care not about what their money does other than what it purchases for them, hence the invisible disconnect that feeds large businesses and governments but accomplishes little else.

Status is measured differently by various sections of society. For some it is your number of good deeds, for others your willingness to assist people at your own expense. Money itself was largely unimportant to them, simply representing a medium of exchange so its measurement of itself is largely ignored. In particular as money began to be spoken of in larger and larger numbers it lost all meaning.

For most people if they possessed enough of this medium to afford a good home, pay bills and still have enough to enjoy simple pleasures they are happy. If they have enough to enjoy ample pleasures their enjoyment rises until the choices of which pleasures to partake in become too many and stress begins.

Thus there is a fine line for the majority of the population. Too little or too much induces stress. This is evidenced by the fact many who become wealthy overnight revert to their previous state of comparative poverty within a year.

Those with ample wealth live in their separate world far removed from ninety-five percent of the population and therefore their lives, except to them, matter little. They purchase only the most expensive items that none of the ninety-five percent produce, further widening the gap of meaningfulness.

Those with money simply sitting in banks as ones and zeroes take comfort in the knowledge it is available if required, yet those with enormous wealth laying idle satisfy no-one except the banking institutions.

To the other ninety-five percent their definition of status carries more importance. If you do not have enough you work endlessly to acquire it, to earn it or perhaps resort to fighting to acquire it.

It then becomes something to brag about to those who do not have it, a meaningless conversation that interests no-one. Hard work is being done by everyone and yet luck or inheritance are the main causes a few acquire wealth above others.

Some are more intelligent and deserve their wealth, yet many also tend to concentrate on saving lives with inventions and products aimed at poorer markets, reducing their wealth yet raising their personal status if not their societal one.

Thus status becomes a personal choice around values. Money is a means to an end but not the end itself, contrary to the belief of the five percent.

Status is not just the providence of individuals. Collectives including organisations and governments also desire it above all else and control the resources to commit crimes or declare war to gain it. Often stealing and war mean the same to such governments, their justification being the protection of their citizens when their citizens know little of their real motives, making the argument vacuous. As were many of the governments, who desire to be in the five percent and who are mainly hollow and short sighted.

Your value to those around you, your contribution to your immediate societal collective weighs far more than any gold bullion.

As money bares so little resemblance to one’s real worth, your work and your knowledge are all, valued beyond all else as there is nothing else. Being judged as the person you are seems foreign yet forms the true foundation of our society.

Wealth is who you are and what you contribute to others. Is there really any other way of measuring true status?