Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Money, Money, Money

Please answer the follwing prompts in a detailed, fluent response. Make sure to comment on other people's views within your own response. Take your level of thinking higher.

What are your perceptions of material wealth? What is "wealth"? Do we see too much excess today? If your financial status a reflection of how successful you are? Are we always wanting more? Do we "want" too much? Is being content or fulfilled enough? When is enough enough?

32 comments:

Mandey K. said...

I think that today in society we focus too much on money. Everyone always wants more new clothes, a new car, a fancy new cell phone; they want to live in a big house to show off how “successful” they are… etc. Material wealth is always something that is going to be present in society but it’s up to the person to show how much it matters to them. Each person has their own opinion about how important materialistic wealth is. I personally, don’t find it to be of great importance. Like if someone lived in a small apartment but has achieved a lot in their life, like contributing to society in charitable ways, or doing things to contribute to today’s economy, they could definitely consider themselves successful. If you’re satisfied with your life, and if you are happy with the things you have and who you are, then I would say you’re pretty successful; you’ve accomplished what you think is of importance and if you do the things that are significant to you than that’s great. It’s up to you to find your pursuit of happiness. To some people they need to show off their wealth, I don’t know if it’s because they want to show those things off to show off the fact that their “successful” or if they do it to feel superior towards those who do not have those things. Some people would rather like to live a humble life, live in a reasonably sized home fit for their family, and wear clothes that are just comfortable for them. Either way I think it’s an opinion for you to decide and figure out which is more important; wealth or non-materialistic items. It’s okay to be happy without having a lot of wealth but some people don’t realize that.

Amy B. said...

To me there are two kinds of wealth. Wealth dealing with money and wealth that has to do with the things that get one through a day, such as family and friends. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and the people that are supposed to have a lot of money do, and the people that don’t, don’t. Consequently, one’s financial status has nothing to do with how successful someone is. From personal experience, I have seen people who live in mansions, yet they live their lives constantly fighting with their family, doing immoral things and just living a generally un-loving household. I have also seen families that live from month to month; paycheck-to-paycheck that has an infinite love for each other and supports each other through good times and bad. To me, the second family would be MUCH more successful. Next, I believe that want is something that fuels the American economy. For example, our economy is struggling currently because the “need” for people is becoming more evident, which means that the demand for wanted goods is going down. I think this a major problem with the society in which we live in. Our needs are others needs, but still we always want more. Will it ever stop and if so, when?

Stacey B. said...

I agree with Amy on how there is wealth in the sense of money and wealth with friends and family. I believe that money does not define a persons success. Wealthy people spend most of their time worrying about all the things they buy and there are too much drama with asscociated with money. Are wealthy people happier? That is the real question? Should a person achieve happiness before wealth?

In today's society I believe we are consumed with material wealth. We always need the latest and greatest things. For example video games. Kids feel that they need the latest gaming system. I think that we compare ourselves with people way too much. It is human nature though for us to want more and more. Well we ever be satisfied with what we have in our lives?

AmyL said...

Material wealth is almost a curse that many in America have been put under. It is something that may make someone happy for a little bit but then somehow be turned around and be bad. However it is not always bad as long as you use it for the better of other people. Oprah for instance uses her money to save lives and better the world around her. Doing that can make her very happy. To respond to Stacey’s question, are wealthy people happier?, is Oprah happier then me because of her money?, no. People become happy based on their achievements and whether or not they are doing things to become happy. Yes, a person should achieve happiness before wealth because then they know what true happiness is. Bill Gates for instance is not giving very much money to his children right away. He wants them to build their own character based on how they are working what they are doing to become happy people, without 50 million dollars right at their finger tips.
I don’t believe financial status reflects how successful you are in a sense. However, if someone is able to lead a middle class life by driving around an average car, living in a decent house, and are able to eat meals when ever wanted, yes this does show that they are successful and probably have worked hard to get there. Why would anyone want to be successful if it didn’t reflect how they live? They wouldn’t feel successful because there wouldn’t be a great reward.
As Americans yes it is fair to say we always want more. Everything seems to be a competition. Whose dad makes more money, which has the best clothes and everyone seems to want to be the best so they continue to want more more more.
Yes being satisfied is enough to live. This depends however on what someone views as their own fulfillment. If someone sets the bar to high then they may never feel fulfilled. One can be truly happy if they are completely satisfied at their standard. That is perfectly enough.

anna_c said...

Material wealth is so pointless. People give money and materialistic items way too much control over their lives. Society measures wealth and success by how big one's house is or by the car/ cars they drive and it is so stupid. In order to be happy, successful or possess wealth, you don't have to be rich. Everyone is always going to want what they don't have, or what they can't have and this isn't always a bad thing. Amy made a good point when she said that want is driving our economy. Demand for the newest products and things we don't have helps to boost our economy and society needs that demand, but wealth, like so many other english words, has it's different meanings. Of course there is a wealth that has to do with money and objects, but there's a more meaningful wealth that can't be bought. Love, friendship, and the support of one's family could make them just as wealthy as Donald Trump, but in a different way. You can be emotionally wealthy, or even physically wealthy.
Financial standings shouldn't reflect accross how successful you are. There are many ways a person can be successful in this life. Whether that be growing up and becoming something that earns them a good living, finally having a baby after several miscarriages, getting along with your parents, or even achieveing an "A" on a spanish final. It all depends on life. Life throws us obsticles every day and it's up to the person to decide whether or not they will be successful.
(Sorry to jump around...)
It's human nature to "want". I don't think want is a bad thing because it ties into curiosity. How would've we ever advanced in technology or landscapimg if we didn't want more? Want pushes people to discover new things. Even though we don't always get what we want, our life can still be fulfilled with contentment. I don't think every little detail of life can be perfect, but that doesn't mean people aren't content with their life.
To be honest, I'm not sure how to answer "when is enough enough?". I guess it depends on the situation and a person's mindset at the time. Everyone has their breaking point, but that is individual. My enough might not be the same as someone else's.

Hailey M said...

Money: that huge factor in society that has such a huge grasp on our lives. In the rare cases of the rich, a surplus of money can create spoiled, arrogant, or apathetic brats. However, for most of us the subject of money can initiate greed, worry, hostility, crime, and despair. Our society’s norm is an idolization of the rich and famous. We can never be too cautious of what might be a scam from money hungry people, and people are constantly investigating ways to save money so they can buy designer jeans or a cooler car.
Wealth is simply fuel for our world’s ever growing greed, specifically America.
The world definitely is at an imbalance financially. While Hollywood is leading America off the deep end of extravagance, over 15 million kids in other nations die every year of hunger because they can’t afford food.
I think financial status is an unreliable and unreasonable way to measure success. In high school the rich kids have next to nothing to do with their family’s financial position. Plenty of families have had their entire lives washed away in natural disasters, and according to our society’s standards of success this is somehow their fault? Many celebrities are “successful” and rich because they are born with a gift to sing or they are simply capable of pretending to be someone else on screen. Yet, teachers, for instance, often grind themselves into the ground each day to help create a future for our youth. Just because they aren’t paid thousands or even millions of dollars are they any less of a success? Why do we measure ourselves by something so entirely fickle? Shouldn’t we be judged on our character or our achievements instead of how much we get paid to do them?
I completely agree with Amy B when she compares the two households: “I have also seen families that live from month to month; paycheck-to-paycheck that has an infinite love for each other and supports each other through good times and bad. To me, the second family would be MUCH more successful.”
Yes, we often do want too much. Akon raps it up perfectly in his song Sweetest Girl (dollar bill). He sings:
Grind for the bill
(and she used to be the sweetest girl)
Some steal for the bill, if they got to pay they bill
(and she used to be the sweetest girl).
People will throw away everything necessary (including integrity or morals) to get material wealth and to be “successful.”
Generosity is a rarity today, even though it is probably the first thing we are taught way back in kindergarten ("sharing is caring"). When someone gives too much we become wary or unbelieving. Why is giving such a hard concept for us to accept? Why are we so okay with our own blessed lives when so many others can barely (if even) afford to stay alive?

Maryanne E. said...

Wealth is being satisfied in quantity of something someone is in need of or desires. Therefore, I agree with Amy B., wealth can be found in love or in material. My perceptions on material wealth vary. Wanting material possessions isn’t a bad thing, it’s inevitable in American society and it’s human nature to want to satisfy certain wishes. However, I think there is a point at which it isn’t about the material aspect and more about the emotional ego. Once again there’s tribulation regarding human nature, people want to know they’re worth something and I believe they find that comfort in others longing to have what they have, even if it is material. It seems today we are told what is elite. The rich, beautiful and powerful. Would those be material? No, but people long for them. I think envy is the driving force behind superficial wants. People want to have what others want and therefore can have material proof of their place in society. People simply need to look past the surface and ask themselves what they want from life, what they consider worthwhile. I know I have material wants. I love getting new running shoes or going on a vacation and spending time in a nice hotel and yes, beyond money, I want good grades and to win awards. I think the ultimate goal behind all of this mayhem is simply the longing to be accepted and considered important. Everyone wants their place and money is a good outlet. Money seems to be a clear way to get something that others will recognize you for. Fundamentally, who is telling people what materials they should desire? Why can’t people accept themselves? Do we need approval from others? If not, what does it take to get someone to the point of personal acceptance?

Maryanne E. said...

Haley M.’s commented, “Generosity is a rarity today, even though it is probably the first thing we are taught way back in kindergarten ("sharing is caring"). When someone gives too much we become wary or unbelieving. Why is giving such a hard concept for us to accept?” I believe the answers to those questions lead back to good ol’ human nature. Greed. People become wary or unbelieving of the greatest offers of generosity, when from a spectators point of view. However, it’s clear that on the receiving side, it’s a different story. Perhaps being wary or unbelieving comes from the fact that so much of society is focused on self gain, and a lot of times being charitable does benefit the giver. Students get collage recognition for community service and the famous for outrageous donations, which is greatly applauded by fans and reps. Is true generosity that which is anonymous? Haley also said, “Why are we so okay with our own blessed lives when so many others can barely (if even) afford to stay alive?” I don’t think we are “okay” with our lives and I think money helps to fill that emptiness. People close their blinds to the world’s issues, not through ignorance, but through fear. Why do people hide from the troubles of the world? Is it to protect the happiness we may attain someday? What does “security” do for someone?

KyleL said...

Material wealth is something that can sometimes make life easier and bring temporary happiness. Unfortunately it is also something that can ruin people’s lives. I think that material wealth is something that people tend to idol and because of this can ruin their lives. Wealth is something that is not necessarily materialistic. Answers.com defines wealth as, “An abundance of valuable material possessions or resources; riches.” I would have to agree with this statement. Assuming that happiness is what we all strive for in life, I don’t think we see to much excess today because wealth is not what makes people happy. If happiness is based on perception (which is what I believe) then wealth should have nothing to do with it. People should try to make the best out of their opportunities and in the end settle with what they have and make the best out of it. Because happiness is based on perception financial status is not a reflection of how successful you are. People are always wanting more. Is this a bad thing? I can’t say if it is or isn’t because it’s not a bad thing to want things, as long as trying to get those things gets in the way of what really matters to that person. This being said it is human nature to always want more and as long as we keep our priorities in check that’s ok. Being content and fulfilled is what everyone should base their lives on achieving and enough is enough when one reaches this point and doesn’t want anything else from life but to enjoy it.

I agree with Amy B when she says there are two kinds of wealth. I was trying to get at that in my statement and she explains what I was getting at very well.

katie s. said...

Most little kids say that when they grow up they want to have a big house and a really nice car. To me that shows that even little kids think about money. I'm fine where I am in terms of money. I don't see my family as rich or poor we are right in the middle with lots of other people. To me wealth is being able to pay the bills with some money to spare. I don't think that the financial status can reflect how successful everyone is but it can show how successful some people are. Some people might like just living in an apartment but they can be very successful in terms of there job and how much money they are making. On the other hand some people like to have lots of room and want to live in a big house and they show their success more than the person that lives in an apartment that is also successful. I think that we want more because more things are being made and being made better. Like video game systems, they made a Playstation then a Playstation 2 a Playstation Portable and now they have a Playstation 3 out. When new and better things come out most people want to have it because it is better than the last product that came out. I think that we do want too much sometimes. Some people want to stop global warming but they still drive their cars around. I don't know what my point was with that but yeah. I don't really think that there is a point of contentment because most people just want more. To me enough is enough if people have so many things that they can't fit it into there house anymore.

tschulze3 said...

I truly believe that money can provide certain happiness however too much of any one thing is bad. Money causes people to have more power and power causes people to have too much greed. I personally think there are more important things than money as I have mentioned before. Money is important to have in order to provide for those you love. Having nice cars and a huge house is nice but not if it corrupts how you are or the person you want to be. Money is a great thing if you don’t become consumed by it. One must realize there are more things than money such as, love, friends, family and wealth beyond money. Defined by dictionary.com as, “"happiness," also "prosperity in abundance of possessions or riches," "well-being"” I think that really defines it. Money is there but its happiness and well-being in addition, money is not the governing force. In America we are all “wealthy” in the terms of many other countries we live the dreams of many every single day we wake up in our houses that most of the world would consider a mansion, we eat food for every meal that would be fit for a king’s fest, we have technology and health care, dental and money enough to pay for it all, we travel the world to exotic places and throw money away on the newest cars, clothes and cell phones, while most of the world doesn’t have clean water to drink, the amount water we waste and throw away is disgusting, our countries worst tap water is better than the drinking water of many, when we turn on the faucet and let the water (hot on demand) waste away in the shower we take it for granted. The next time you eat a meal think yourself a king, the next time you drink be grateful and when you go to buy your next designer shirt think how much better off you are than many in the world. Remember the homeless and poor in this country live much better than many whole countries.

amuramoto5 said...

When will we be satisfied? In todays society enough will never reach its point. Everyone always wants more... more money, clothes, houses, cars etc. Everything seems to be a competition with wealth. People are always fighting to come out with the most "high tech" products, or the newest cell phone. Material wealth will never go away from society because everything we do is based on what we buy and money. I also agree with Amy in saying that wealth doesn't always have to do with money, you can also be very wealthy, as in blessed. You can be blessed with a family, or just for the little things in life.
Today, people deffinately want to much. Want is a big word and in todays society people want anything and everything they can get to proove themselves to their community and to the nation.
Successful people don't have to be rich. A successful person just needs to be happy with their life and the road they are going down. If you are proud of your acomplishments and things significant that you've done, then you are most deffinaltey successful.

kyndral said...

Wealth. That word creates a curse for many people. In talking about success, society views financail status as a measurement of how well you have done in life. But I believe that money causes emotions like greed and power in many people. Is that success? I doubt it. I judge success on happiness, on how a person lives their life from day to day. How they feel about where they are in life. Satisfaction and content measure how successful a person is, not money and houses.
Responding to Hailey's question about charity, I believe that we are so cautious today that random acts of charity and generosity cause a red flag in our minds. There have been people who used trust as a way to kill or harm someone. Hearing those stoies on the news or experiencing them first hand gives us a different perspective on life. Everyone and everything is a threat. We have created a world where trust in strangers is nonexistant and generosity is looked on with suspicion and doubt. I guess what I would ask people, is how do we fix this problem? Wealth is looked at as money and generosity as a threat. How did we become such a materialistic, paranoid society? And is there any way of going back to simplicity? Where wealth was not not mearsured by cars and houses, but happiness and families. I wish to be wealthy, but not a millionaire. I wish to revel in the simple things and find happiness in my life. Then, I will consider myself wealthy. And a wealthy society would not be how many people make billions of dollars, but how many people are truly content with their life. That to me is wealth and success.

brittanyd said...

Wealth is something of course no matter how you put it we all desire to have. Each day i can wake up and be happy with everything that I have, but its human nature to want more. Desire is a trap that no one can escape. With wealth comes material wealth which i think is what our minds drift twoards when we think of wealth. I can even walk down the halls of Arapahoe and I admit i see some designer t-shirt and i wish i could afford it, all were all guilty of this in one way or another. When i feel that split moment of desire, I almost everytime have to stop myself and ask myself if that really matters. The truth, its pounded in our heads every single day that we have to have material objects to be accepted, but is that really how it should be? Of course not. Someones financial state has absolutley nothing to do with how sucessful one person is. You may be a prosperous lawyer who makes an unbelivable amount of money but you may have not suceeded in anything of importance in your own eyes. On the complete opposite end of the spectrum you may have a janitor that makes minimum wage and he can sit there and list thousands of his accomplishments to you, and he goes home to a wonderful family every night. As Amy had stated wealth comes in many forms. Our "want" to aquire that wealth can ulitmetly take over our lives. If you live in want you achieve nothing, America is full of want, we want what we cant have. Not all of us can live in mansions and have that nice car, but we all need to learn to be satisfied with what we have and what our lives consist of. Happiness is not found in a paycheck, thats something we all need to try and keep in our minds. Live you life and soak in those moments you can never get back, stop worrying about how much money you make.

Shelby M. said...

I think there is more than one kind of wealth and everyone decides what they think is their own. Nobody’s wealth is going to be the same. I think that they different kinds of wealth are… Money wealth, and happiness wealth like family and friends and the everyday little things that make you smile. I don’t think material wealth is everything, sure its nice but its not something I think should determine you “wealth.” I do not believe that you financial status is a reflection of how successful you are. Many people that just get by and live paycheck to paycheck are some of the happiest people you’ll meet. At the same time some people feel that not being rich means that they will never succeed and anything in life. Sure money makes achieving some things easier but not everything. I think that it is human nature to want more and more of things we cant and don’t have. We tend to think that a new fancy car or house will full fill the rest of our happiness, but once you get that new car or house, it will be on to the next big fancy thing you want and cant have. It’s a continuous circle of want want want. I don’t know when enough is enough I feel that I have enough to full fill me and I think that’s all that should matter to someone is if they are happy. Sure I want things but that doesn’t make me any less happy that can’t have those things.

Sophie M said...

Material wealth to me is easily defined as something you buy, have to pay for or something you lock away in a bank. We are brainwashed and bombarded with possessions and materials all of our lives, so for many its hard to see outside the box that surrounds us. I believe material wealth is something that can corrupt people, ruin lives and tear apart friendships. Now I’m not saying that happens to every rich person ever, but the greed that grips so many can be overwhelming. Unfortunately the world we live in makes it hard not to want material wealth no matter who you are. Although money is not the key to happiness it is however necessary, to eat, to have a roof over your hand, to have closes, etc. I know the world we live in today is much more materialistic then ever before but the truth still remains that if you want to live you’re going to need some money and its been like that since before the birth of our very spoiled country. Although in reality wealth is referring to money, I have always grown up in a family that uses the word wealth in a different way. Actually we usually say rich, but same thing, my mom always tells me the most important thing is to be rich in life. Meaning to make true worth of your life, know meaning in your life, value your opportunities and be wealthy in that way. I’m sure that I am one of very few who think of wealth in that way but I believe that type of wealth is greater then any amount of money, and is much more important. Conversations like this make me wonder, if all the greedy people in the world understand that they can’t take it (it as in money)with them?
Yes of course we see too much excess, has any one ever been to Cosco? Seriously though there is soo much around all of us everyday that it seems impossible that there are starving people all over the word, even in our naïve bubble that we live in.
As for the success part I definitely agree with Mandey “If you’re satisfied with your life, and if you are happy with the things you have and who you are, then I would say you’re pretty successful; you’ve accomplished what you think is of importance and if you do the things that are significant to you than that’s great. It’s up to you to find your pursuit of happiness.” She is right its up to you and only you to decided if your satisfied with your life, if you want to do more with your life and as said before its up to you to be happy with your self. -One thing about happiness that I recently thought of was that yes I believe that we all chose to be happy or not, but all of us may not be happy with the same thing, so accomplishing happiness will be/ is different for all of us.- Anyway I’m with Mandey that success is not measured by the weight of your wallet but by the truth inside you. I know very corny but I think that is a very simple way to say it, when it comes to the end which would you rather be remembered for living the most amazing “rich” life or having the most money? This leaves me with many more questions; is appreciation gone? Are we all taking our lives for granted? Can peoples opinions of money be changed? Is it too late?

Parker C said...

Conclusions about previous blogs……
There is a consensus thus far in the blog that material wealth takes on a negative connotation and that “wealth” has two general definitions; financial and ethical. It would be arrogant to say that there is not a prominent fixation with wealth in the American economy. We’re a democratic capitalist nation, are we not? Furthermore, the examples provided in previous blogs share similar sentiments of degrading the over zealous family and making the content yet well off family who embraces their situation rather. A person is not defined by there financial status nor limited by it in regards to how successful a person is; thus there’s an living, breathing person behind the dollar bill signs not just a statistic. So, what does this confirm? AHS students remain humanitarian in their view points and remorse for the raveousness that even those who have seemingly everything maintain while the poor get poorer. But do we really…
Let’s start with Capitalism. If anyone is uncertain if they have ever been exposed to capitalism, open your eyes and look in the mirror. See the clothes, shoes, style etc. you envelope, that’s capitalism. At one point, an individual designed your shirt (for sake of example) presented it to the corporation that hired them to create it in the first place. At which point, the company decided it was a good looking shirt and sent it out for mass production. MADE IN CHINA. We’re all familiar with it. I’d be willing to bet you shirt (the one in the example) was produced outside the USA because the cheaper the labor the more profit the corporation makes. Furthermore, the shirt is outsourced to the hundreds of corporation stores across the nation where it will be sold to you, the consumer, for almost 4 times the actual cost of making the shirt. Capitalism-an economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations, esp. as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth.
Wait a minute, we don’t support workers getting paid less than minimum wage by corporations that making millions every year. No, we don’t condone a system that’s based off the financially dominated principles. Unless you own say 7 pairs of clothing (one for each day of the week) that you made yourself, can you really say you’re not indirectly supporting this? I’ll be the first to admit to doing so. Yet, is the competitive nature of capitalism so bad? Is it innately wrong to strive to be the best?
Transitioning into to satisfaction, is not accepting satisfaction really that twisted? If civilization had decided it was satisfied with the current conditions, it would never have strived for advancement. Therefore, what would technology be today? Would we have cell phones that do everything shy of think for us? An inability to achieve complete satisfaction has contributed to the many luxuries enjoyed today. While I realize satisfaction becomes unhealthy when at an obsessive extent, extremes are evident on each side of the spectrum and thus what isn’t detrimental when taken to extreme?
(Furthermore, there is a greater portion of me that agrees with the approach many of the previous blogs have taken, I choose to present a couple opposing view points to see how others will respond. I hope to gain a better understanding of the somewhat contradictory arguments above. )

LouiseT said...

To me, material wealth is a sense of security and comfort. By buying more and more material goods, people develop a sense of security knowing that they can afford such new and improved non-essential items and will be accepted in the realm of society. Human beings convince themselves internally that they NEED more and more, when really it’s their WANTS that take over. Wealth is simply a term that measures how much money you’re made of…all of the items you own, the property you live on, all of your external, physical luxuries. Wealth however, does not define who you are on the inside or whether or not you are successful. Yes, I do consider people who have earned a lot of money and worked hard in their careers successful; however loads of money is not the only way to achieve it.
Some people these days are blind to what is going on in other countries and show this by their constant consuming of goods. People in other countries do not have the opportunities and luxuries that we do in America and some times we get so caught up in our material wealth that we forget about people in need and just focus on whether or not we have the newest designer shoes or the updated I Phone. I love how Hailey put it, “Wealth is simply fuel for our world’s ever growing greed, specifically America.” This greed distracts us from the things that matter, the things that will truly produce happiness.
Of course we are always wanting more. Humans are competitive by nature constantly wanting to one up their neighbor. But the question when is enough enough, makes me stumble. When will humans be satisfied? When people stop buying non essential goods and look to help those in need? When will new and improved items stop being produced? When will humans stop wanting and purchasing excess material goods? WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH? Due to my observations, the correct answer seems to be, never.

NickyM said...

I feel material wealth is in a way a little ridiculous. In my opinion i would rather have more then just materialistic things to show for my wealth. Our society is obsessed with having material wealth. There are better things to put your money to and truly show your wealth instead of stupid little things that don't have any true meaning. I society portrays wealth on how many cars you have, how big your house is and yes there is to much of it.
I dont feel you financial status have nothing to do with how successful you are. Juts because a person dose not make that much money and dose not have a huge house dose not mean they are not successful.
We are contently wanting more. We always want the newer this the bigger that, the better this. Bu for a society to develop i think it is necessary. We thrive off of each others idea tell its perfected.
I feel as a society we expect way to much. We always expect and want to much or what we cant have.
I don't think anyone could answer when enough is enough. Its something that will kind of just happen i think. I don't think we will ever have "enough".
I also agree with anna c.
"My enough might not be the same as someone else's."
People stop when they want and get what they wanted, and that is different for everyone.

alex.d said...

Wealth can either be money or having friends and family. Most people view wealth as being rich, having a huge house and driving a benz. I disagree because being rich doesnt't necessary make one successful and happy. Being proud of what you have acomplished is my definition of being wealthy. In today's society most people focus more on the wants than the needs. People constantly want more, either a new video game system, pair of Jordans or having a new cell phone. I don't think its a bad to wanting to have things you want. Its human nature to want more.
With more new technology coming out such as cell phones, computers, etc.. people in my opinion will continue to focus on their wants rather than their needs.

Anna P. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anna P. said...

Maryanne's comment of, "when someone gives too much we become wary or unbelieving" really struck me. I think she hit the nail on the head. "No good deed goes unpunished". For those who are wealthy, in the money sense, and donate great amounts of this money to charities and projects it is seen by the outside world as a pompous act all for the attention. People are too judgmental. If the world judged a little less I believe that the role of money would be lesser. Like Mandey said, "Everyone always wants more new clothes, a new car, a fancy new cell phone; they want to live in a big house to show off how 'successful' they are… etc". People see others with new things and judge the item. After deciding whether it is good or not they want one too. When someone donates money and gets an award or dedication someone sees that and thinks, "Hey I want that to be me!" Judging ties to "want".
"Want" is a word that is learned quickly by toddlers. The thought of this is scary for me but great for the merchandising companies. Want was thrust into our vocabulary at a young age and is used extensively. I don't believe that I have ever met someone who could truthfully say that they didn't want anything anymore. That they were happy with there life, because now a days even if you are happy with your relationships or grades, looks have come into the picture. Someone now has the option to have botox or a facelift so that they look younger. There is so much more to want now a days that it becomes harder and harder to say that we are truly happy.

Nick D. said...

In today's society, there are many things that we cannot do without money. We all need money to live and eat that is a must, but why do we need wealth? Having money can get you the best things in life, and almost be able to do anything you want to. I agree with Mandey when she says that people showing off their wealth is always going to happen and weather they try to show it off or not, it's up to them on how they decide.
Wealth is unfortunatley used as a somewhat "status" symbol in American societies today. For example, if someone has the car of your dreams, a car you have been saving up for years, and you see them driving down the street like a "hot-rod" my automatic response would be, "Lucky!" People would most often assume they are more wealthy because they don't have that something that the other does. Jealousy can make a person seem more wealthy even though they are not.
People show-off, and they always have and always will. It is about hoaving the best, it's human nature to be competitive. In some cases it's really bad, for example, a guy lives in a $20 million dollar house across the street from a country that he "convieniently" is a member at and every sunday morning for the Sunday Brunch, he drives across the street, walking distance, to the club for breakfast, just so he can present his newly purchased Farrari to the other, in this man's eye's, not so wealthy folk.
Everyone is succesful, from every way you think about it. They may have succeded in their life long goal they set 20 years ago to own a grocery store. Another may succeed by purchasing Mexico. Why should wealth determine success? Why can't a person be happy with who they are and who others are aswell? People are always wanting more for themselves and become more noticed becuase they have everything and they have money. If a person like this is always wanting, how are they happy? How are they going to be successful in life if all they ever do is complain and want more? Money isn't everything and money should never determine how a person is percieved. A goal to someone can be nothing to another, but why would you shoot another's goals down if they aren't good enough for you? They aren't your goals.

Austin F. said...

I think that material wealth is what society bases its' judgements on. I think that if you are wealthy society sees you as a successful person. It's a sad fact of our world today, but we've come to base our perceptions on wealth because it is an easy way to judge people. I feel that our obsession with material wealth is a product of our natural need to compete. As we as a society succeed we try to one up ourselves and create something better. If we can make it to the moon then why not try and make it to Mars? Our accomplishments seem to become average and routine which instills the motivation to create something better. I think that there are two different kinds of wealth. There is personal wealth and then there is wealth within society. I feel that personal wealth is decided by each individual person and everyone gets to determine the meaning for themselves, while wealth within society is determined by society and society determines your wealth based on what those around you have. I don't think that we want too much. I feel that as we progress we need more so that we can accomplish new things and progress as a society through our accomplishments. I don't think that enough will ever be enough because we want to accomplish things on our own rather than just using the accomplishments of others and being satified with that.

Nick E said...

Wealth is quite simply the amount of money someone has. Your wealth is measured upon the money in your possession. I believe that there is much too much excess in AMERICA. To say the world would be stretching it, I mean there is excess in the world but no where like America. I think other countries see us as a nation of excess which you cant blame them, we have biggie size meals, Costco, SUVs, etc., which pretty much spell excess. Now is our wealth a reflection of our success? No, because I don’t want to upset Mrs. Comp. Only joking, but its true, I don’t believe it is a reflection of our success. Inherences aside, those who have earned a great deal of money either have an amazing talent at something, incredible luck, or just choose to take a path to a lifestyle that they strive for that happens to have a large salary. But success isn’t measured upon money; it’s decided by yourself and if you truly feel happy and accomplished then you are successful. For instance, both my mom and step dad are teachers, they love what they do and couldn’t be happier, now they may not make bank, but they get by and enjoy life as much as any could. Now would they enjoy nicer cars and vacations? Yeah, but would they enjoy being a doctor or a dentist? No, they do what they love and they’ve accomplished their goals in turn making them successful. The same goes for everyone, if you’re doing what you love and you’re enjoying life, and then I would consider you a successful person. The opposite of success is failure and I’ve never met anyone who loves life and what they do and classified them a failure. As far as always wanting more and better, I am going through the perfect instance. I’m in the market for a new car because mine is costing a lot in repairs and I can’t afford it anymore, but every car I look at in my price range, I don’t like. So now when I go to school and see all the kids whose parents obviously bought them cars, I catch myself getting a bit envious. When I get home I always start browsing cars online and looking at all the cars I really want but can’t have and I wonder if when I get financially able to get a car at the next level, will I just want a car at an even higher level? It kind of bums you out in a way because you get back to reality and you realize your wants most likely will always exceed your capabilities. It kind of goes a long with what Anna Paul said when she mentioned kid’s first words being want. It’s a scary reality, straight out of the womb and we already want, want, and want. I wish I could say I knew when enough was enough and that I would be content someday, but there is constantly something out there that I dream of having and I honestly don’t think that will ever end, sadly.

Rick M. said...

Wealth in a material sense is found in the form of money and possessions. These items are items that can be seen, touched, and cause feelings of envy in others. Because of this, people work for money to spend on excess. People don’t see the value in working purely for the success that can be found just by having something to get up for every morning. The value of money to people is based on everything they can buy for themselves, and not the experiences they can have. Most people would sooner spend money on an eighth set of shoes or third iPod than on gasoline to drive out to the eastern plains to watch a sunrise. People cannot be content with “enough” and always want more even though they don’t need it. We need to realize that we’re only here for so long, and nobody is going to remember us by what we had or did not have, but rather what we experienced and what we left behind for others to learn.

Madison S. said...

Material wealth can be anything from human beings to personal items. I believe that the amount of material wealth one person has is that it is the amount of money earned to get to those things. Wealth is happiness. There has always been excess and yes I believe there has been way too much. Everyone is always constantly yearning for more because of the fact that the world isn't at a stand still and we make it that way. Enough will never be enough. Not always do we need money to achieve wealth but it sure helps get us along the way!

Madison S. said...

Material wealth can be anything from human beings to personal items. I believe that the amount of material wealth one person has is that it is the amount of money earned to get to those things. Wealth is happiness. There has always been excess and yes I believe there has been way too much. Everyone is always constantly yearning for more because of the fact that the world isn't at a stand still and we make it that way. Enough will never be enough. Not always do we need money to achieve wealth but it sure helps get us along the way!

Whitney S. said...

When I think of wealth I automatically think of money, and by no means friends or other worldly possessions. Wealth in my mind is solely based on money. Today there is tons of money flowing around that you can observe just by an outward appearance, although we have no clue if they appear to be wealthy because they are in debt. Yes and no for success showing a reflection of wealth, you could become successful in money factors which would usually reflect your finical status, but you could become successful in personal aspirations and never have obtained wealth. We as human’s always want more, I think it is part of being human but I feel as though you can only want so much more. If you become envious of others things, it creates angry, frustration, and sometimes depression. I also agree that we want too much we need to be happy with the things we have and realize that someone always has less than us. I think making a decision of when enough is enough is based on when the specific individual feels it appropriate.

kirstie a. said...

My perception of material wealth is that the idea itself is simply a false sense of success that society has implanted in our minds. I feel as though many judge a person’s societal role and importance based on the material possessions. I believe a person’s wealth is not based on what the own, but based on what they have done and how they have lived their life. I strive for happiness, not in the form of a new car or new clothes, but in a sense of accomplishment. I always want something more or greater then the things I have already done. Is that the way we as people should live? Always wanting, always desiring? I think the need for more is what causes the advancement of society. Without the constant need for more, people would end up setting for mediocrity. Always wanting more is a great thing not only for the world but also for the individual. To always strive for more and greater things causes a person to grow and better them self.

jake R said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kyle M. said...

This question is particularly interesting in the fact it deals with material wealth not emotional wealth and/or worldly wealth.As a human being we are generally attracted to things that are shiney, Let's face it we just are. I don't think material wealth in today's world involves actually money but more the stuff you buy with it. For example, if someone wants to impress someone they go buy a rolex or a 4k diamond ring. They don't hand them $200 and say see im better than you. That means people then end up wanting to much. There is always people out there that will want you for your money and those people are evil, I can prove it.

Golddiggers = money x time
(time = money)
so
Golddiggers = money x money
money x money = (money)squared
and
money = root of all evil
therefore
(money)squared = evil
so that means
Goldiggers = evil

Its sad how people in todays world operate, they keep wanting and taking without any remorse.