Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Pursuit of Pleasure

On Kudlow and Company today, Larry Kudlow and Art Laffer lamented at a Gallup report that claimed half of all Americans cite "getting rich" as a high priority goal (or the priority goal, I can't remember). "Only half?" they said. "That's horrible." Laffer thought it should be 100%.

Let's set aside the fact that people are diverse and some want to simply retire or raise a family or live a quiet life. Getting rich is expensive and is not a goal for everyone's tastes and lifestyles. Instead I want to point out the hidden success story in that poll.

If lots of people aren't focusing on getting rich, that means they don't see a need to get rich. They can live a happy life much easier than before. We are so wealthy, people can spend their time pursuing things they desire but cannot be bought. That's a sign of our economy's strength, not its weakness.


Anonymous said...

"Getting rich" is like climbing mountains. You often need specialized training and equipment. You do need determination. The higher you go, the worse the fall is. Not everyone makes it no matter how hard they try. It's hard work. Some people do it "because it's there", some see it as an impossible dream. Finally it's easier to reach the top when you're start half-way there.

How may people who said getting rich isn't a high priority said it because they feel it's an impossible dream? How many of the millions stuck working multiple low-wage jobs manage to climb up the wealth ladder? Why aren't there more? How is it a sign of a strong economy when those on the bottom tend to stay on the bottom and those at the top tend to stay at the top?


breakdown said...

What is rich? To some, living in certain African countries, we are already rich. A millionaire without any love is poor. Sting once said he thought he was rich until he visited a king somewhere in Saudi. Even with all his wealth he could not imaging te wealth some people have. We choose not be rich when we think we already are or dont deserve it.
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