Sunday, December 21, 2008

Can You Buy Happiness?

Richard Epstein of the University of Chicago discusses how money can buy happiness and also how money can cost you happiness. His bottom line is that only you can decide what you value but that it is the wise person who knows or at least has thought about (often with the help of others) the trade offs. He also makes an astute observation which I like very much.

The people consumed by envy are a small misanthropic set of the general population.

What he fails to emphasize sufficiently is that it is those people who are often bellowing the loudest, trying to influence others to employ theft (government) to bring things into the "proper" balance. To the detriment of all concerned.

It never works. Because there is always some one smarter, prettier, taller, more charming, more accomplished, more talented, etc. etc. etc. And there is nothing you can do about it even if you make every one's material condition identical.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

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