A new study suggests that money actually does buy happiness

Call in the quacks! The shrink. The counselor. Get the voodoo man on the line. The Rogue Economist is going soft and mushy… analyzing his own feelings and motivations… his own relationship with money.

It begins with a note from a dear reader:

 

“What a pile of garbage. There is no correlation between happiness and money. None.”

 

Oh yeah?

Half the world works just to survive. But the other half works to get ahead. It aims to get richer. Why so much effort if there is no connection – none at all – to happiness?

And why are so many people investing their money, if not in the hope that it will be fructified… making them wealthier?

On Thursday, neither the Dow nor the price of gold budged. You can interpret that any way you want. There was no follow through on Wednesday’s big drop in stock prices. But there was no rebound either. Mr. Market, are you listening? We await further instructions [Mr. Market delivered instruction on Friday, ed.].

 

prozac instead of a raiseA new study suggests that money actually does buy happiness (there’s a study for everything …)

More Money, More Honey?

Meanwhile, we have been making the case that the link between money and happiness isn’t as straight and sure as: More Money = More Happiness. And it can be the other way around: More Money = Less Happiness.

There are three key decisions you make in life; having money doesn’t keep you from botching them up. In fact, money can make the wrong choice more readily available to you. Neither high-toned hookers nor highly paid stock brokers make their calls in poor neighborhoods.

We grew up poor … but not unhappy. We took from our childhood that happiness was independent of wealth. We drew our happiness from the home and the family. vAnd with this base of our contentment secure, we could go out into the world and face whatever challenges and hardships might come our way… confident that no matter what happened, our happiness was safe at home.

We began this series with an insight: If you want to get rich, you had better learn to like poverty first. A man who measures his worth in material success may not be able to bear the risk of failure. In our case, we were largely indifferent to it. Money didn’t really matter much. So we could afford to take chances.

After law school, instead of taking the safe route – billing clients for nasty divorces or slick tax schemes – we started a business.

 

happiness

 

The Only Sure Route to Success

No matter what you do, it is hard to put your hands on serious money. When you come of age, someone else already owns all of the money in the world. Its custodians and guardians will not turn it over to you readily.

Starting out, you won’t know what you have to do to make your business succeed. Most likely your business will fail; you don’t want to take it too hard. Instead, you want to take advantage of it. Since you can’t know in advance what will succeed, eliminating failures is the only sure route to success.

The challenge is to fail early and often enough so you still have your nerve and your wits when you finally stumble onto something that works. Even if you are able to separate yourself (again in a deep, emotional way) from material success, it still plays a role in your life. As we explained in this series, we want more wealth for a reason, even if we don’t know what the reason is.

When we undertake to get it we get a sense of satisfaction and delight when we succeed. It is not necessarily the money that satisfies us though; it may just be like the satisfaction you get from choosing the fastest line at the checkout counter… or cutting someone off in traffic.

Life is competitive. We want to win. And money is one way of keeping score. The typical man has a job where he is told, more or less, what to do. He may earn a high salary or a low one. He may like what he does. Or he may suffer it, as he suffers a tax audit or a colonoscopy. But it will probably not get him any serious wealth or satisfaction.

You do not get either by going along with the flow. You get it by disrupting it. Like disruptive technology, you must change the way money is earned… and spent… altering the capital landscape of the planet. If you are to get more, relatively, others must have less.

This gives the competitive moneymaker a deep sense of reward even before he is successful. He is not necessarily the richest of men, but he is probably among the happiest. Beethoven referred to him as the “free artist.” He does what he likes with no overseer laying the lash on his back and no Wall Street banker holding a million-dollar bonus in his face.

He would do his work even if it didn’t pay. For he is a builder remaking the world… not in his own image exactly, but at least with his fingerprints on it.

 

fingerprint

This fingerprint was left by an architect in Thailand …

(Photo via graaam.com, author unknown)

 

The above article is from Diary of a Rogue Economist originally written for Bonner & Partners. Bill Bonner founded Agora, Inc in 1978. It has since grown into one of the largest independent newsletter publishing companies in the world. He has also written three New York Times bestselling books, Financial Reckoning Day, Empire of Debt and Mobs, Messiahs and Markets.

 

 

Emigrate While You Can... Learn More

 


 

 
 

Dear Readers!

You may have noticed that our so-called “semiannual” funding drive, which started sometime in the summer if memory serves, has seamlessly segued into the winter. In fact, the year is almost over! We assure you this is not merely evidence of our chutzpa; rather, it is indicative of the fact that ad income still needs to be supplemented in order to support upkeep of the site. Naturally, the traditional benefits that can be spontaneously triggered by donations to this site remain operative regardless of the season - ranging from a boost to general well-being/happiness (inter alia featuring improved sleep & appetite), children including you in their songs, up to the likely allotment of privileges in the afterlife, etc., etc., but the Christmas season is probably an especially propitious time to cross our palms with silver. A special thank you to all readers who have already chipped in, your generosity is greatly appreciated. Regardless of that, we are honored by everybody's readership and hope we have managed to add a little value to your life.

   

Bitcoin address: 1DRkVzUmkGaz9xAP81us86zzxh5VMEhNke

   
 

Your comment:

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Most read in the last 20 days:

  • Japan: It isn’t What the Media Tell You
      Known for Being Terrible For the past few decades, Japan has been known for its stagnant economy, falling stock market, and most importantly its terrible demographics.     A chart of Japan's much-bewailed demographic horror-show. Most people consider a declining population to be a bad thing due to the implications for assorted state-run pay-as-you-go Ponzi schemes, primarily those related to retirement. It is hard to be sympathetic, since it would have been possible to...
  • Bitcoin Facts
      A Useful Infographic When we last wrote more extensively about Bitcoin (see Parabolic Coin – evidently, it has become a lot more “parabolic” since then), we said we would soon return to the subject of Bitcoin and monetary theory in these pages. This long planned article was delayed for a number of reasons, one of which was that we realized that Keith Weiner's series on the topic would give us a good opportunity to address some of the objections to Bitcoin's fitness as a medium of...
  • Inflation and Gold - Precious Metals Supply and Demand
      Reasons to Buy Gold The price of gold went up $19, and the price of silver 42 cents. The price action occurred on Monday, Wednesday and Friday though so far, only the first two price jumps reversed. We promise to take a look at the intraday action on Friday.   File under “reasons to buy gold”: A famous photograph by Henri Cartier-Bresson of a rather unruly queue in front of a bank in Shanghai in 1949 in the final days of Kuomintang rule. When it dawned on people that the...
  • An Update on Polly: She May be Coming Back to Life
      A Twitch of a Toe In our recent update on credit spreads we proposed to use the seemingly deceased  Monty Python parrot Polly as a stand-in for the suspicion of creditors in today's markets.  The question was whether Polly was indeed dead or merely in a deep coma. Depending on this, one should be able to gauge how powerful a miracle will be required to resurrect her.   Meet Polly. Is she alive?   In the first half of November there was actually a small sign that...
  • The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Being an Idiot
      Style Over Substance There are many things that could be said about the GOP tax bill.  But one thing is certain.  It has been a great show. Obviously, the time for real solutions to the debt problem that’s ailing the United States came and went many decades ago.  Instead of addressing the Country’s mounting insolvency, lawmakers chose expediency without exception.  They kicked the can from yesterday to today.   The empty chairs meeting – this is slightly...
  • Lessons from Squanto
      Standing In Your Way Governments across the planet will go to any length to meddle in the lives and private affairs of their citizens.  This is what our experiences and observations have shown.  What gives? For one, politicians have an aversion to freedom and liberty.  They want to control your behavior, choices, and decisions.  What’s more, they want to use your money to do so.   As this by now famous cartoon implies, the State is essentially a gang of criminals...
  • Precious Metals Supply and Demand – Thanksgiving Week
      Grain of Salt Required The price of gold fell $7, and that of silver 24 cents. This was a holiday shortened week, due to Thanksgiving on Thursday in the US (and likely thin trading and poor liquidity on Wednesday and Friday). So take the numbers this week, including the basis, with a grain of that once-monetary commodity, salt. We will keep the market action commentary brief.   Relatively modern examples of salt money which was widely used in African countries until the...
  • The Precious Metals Bears' Fear of Fridays
      Peculiar Behavior In the last issue of Seasonal Insights I have shown that the gold price behaves quite peculiarly in the course of the trading week. On average, prices rise almost exclusively on Friday. It is as though investors in this market were mired in deep sleep for most of the week.   The title of this blog post is a play of words on the title of an early Wim Wender movie, The Goalkeeper's Fear of the Penalty, which in turn is based on a famous novel by Peter Handke...
  • What’s the Point? Precious Metals Supply and Demand Report
      Questions and Answers A reader emailed us, to ask a few pointed questions. Paraphrasing, they are:   Who cares if dollars are calculated in gold or gold is calculated in dollars? People care only if their purchasing power has grown. What is the basis good for? Is it just mathematical play for gold theorists? How does knowing the basis help your readers? Is it just a theoretical explanation of what has already happened? Prove that if someone has known the basis...
  • The Zealous Pursuit of State-Sponsored Collapse
      When Bakers Go Fishing Government intervention into a nation’s economy is as foolish as attempting to control the sun’s rise and fall by law or force.  But that doesn’t mean governments don’t meddle each and every day with the best – and worst – of intentions.  The United States government is no exception.   From the “When the government helps the economy” collection: Breaking a few eggs while baking the bridge to nowhere omelet. [PT]   Over the...
  • The Party of Spend More vs. the Party of Tax Less
      Eternal Spendathon The Senate just passed a 500-page tax reform bill. Assuming it lives up to its promise, it will cut taxes on corporations and individuals. Predictably, the Left hates it and the Right loves it. I am writing to argue why the Right should hate it (no, not for the reason the Left does, a desire to get the rich).   The Federal debtberg has grown beyond all measure since Nixon's gold default. So has the money supply and the amount of private debt. No-one...
  • The Santa Claus Rally is Especially Pronounced in the DAX
      The Gift that Keeps on Giving Every year a certain stock market phenomenon is said to recur, anticipated with excitement by investors: the Santa Claus rally. It is held that stock prices typically rise quite frequently and particularly strongly just before the turn of the year.   Unbeknown to many, Santa Claus paid a high price for enriching investors [PT]   I want to show you the Santa Claus rally in the German DAX Index as an example. Price moves are often...

Support Acting Man

Top10BestPro
j9TJzzN

Austrian Theory and Investment

Archive

350x200

THE GOLD CARTEL: Government Intervention on Gold, the Mega Bubble in Paper and What This Means for Your Future

Realtime Charts

 

Gold in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Gold in EUR:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Silver in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Platinum in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

USD - Index:

[Most Recent USD from www.kitco.com]

 

 
Buy Silver Now!
 
Buy Gold Now!
 

Oilprice.com