Scientists prove even the thought of money spoils enjoyment

May 27, 2010 by Lin Edwards, Medical Xpress report
money

(PhysOrg.com) -- The idea that money does not buy happiness has been around for centuries, but now scientists have proven for the first time that even the thought of money reduces satisfaction in the simple pleasures of life.

In the study led by Jordi Quoidbach of the University of Liege in Belgium, over 350 adult volunteers were recruited. The subjects were university workers with jobs ranging from cleaners to senior positions. They were given questionnaires asking them about how much they earned, how much they saved, their attitudes to , and measuring their savoring ability. Savoring is feeling positive emotions such as contentment, , joy, awe or excitement during an experience.

The results showed that the subjects who were wealthier had a self-assessed lower level of savoring ability, and this undermined the positive effects of money on their , although they were overall slightly happier than the less well-off subjects.

The volunteers were then randomly assigned into one of two groups. The subjects in one group were shown a picture of a stack of money as a reminder of wealth, while the second group were shown the same picture but blurred beyond recognition.

After being shown the picture the subjects were given further psychological questionnaires designed to measure their ability to savor pleasant experiences. The results were that if the subjects were shown the clear picture of money first they scored lower in their ability to savor experiences.

In a second test 40 students were given a binder that included a questionnaire asking them about their attitudes to chocolate. The binder also contained a photograph, marked as being part of an unrelated study, of a stack of money or a neutral object. They were then given a piece of chocolate to eat.

Two observers, who had no knowledge of which picture the subject had viewed, used stopwatches to time how long the subject savored the chocolate, and gave them a rating on how much they appeared to be enjoying the chocolate. The results were that subjects who had viewed the picture of money spent an average of 32 seconds savoring the chocolate, while those who had viewed the neutral picture spent 45 seconds on average and appeared to derive more enjoyment from it.

The conclusion the authors reached was that access to money undermines a person’s ability to savor the simple pleasures of life, and even looking at a photograph reminding them of wealth could reduce their satisfaction levels.

The study adds to other research in psychology looking at why, once people have enough to cover their basic needs, having more money has little effect on the enjoyment of life.

The paper is published in the Psychological Science journal.

More information: Jordi Quoidbach et al., Money Giveth, Money Taketh Away, Psychological Science, Published online before print May 18, 2010, doi:10.1177/0956797610371963

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finitesolutions
1 / 5 (2) May 27, 2010
They should have included some bums and unemployed people in the research group.
magpies
not rated yet May 27, 2010
Can you actually picture yourself taking part of this survey?
VultureTX
3.7 / 5 (3) May 27, 2010
Don't you hate poorly designed studies?
Did they just forget to interview them afterwards to see what the "picture of a stack of money" actually reminded them of? Like bills to pay, or obligations that could be repaid with that money, or even why the University was raising fees and all they see to got was this lousy chocolate.

And this is why Psych is a SOFT science.
in7x
5 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
"Can you actually picture yourself taking part of this survey?"

Depends how much it pays. ;)
patnclaire
May 27, 2010
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
patnclaire
1 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
I would add that The results were mis-judged. An example is about the subjects who were wealthier had a self-assessed lower level of savoring ability. Maybe they had higher expectations and the low level of the test did not meet them. The judgment that follows about undermined the positive effects of money on their happiness. What! Where did that come from?
patnclaire
not rated yet May 27, 2010
The article says that subjects in one group were shown a picture of a stack of money as a reminder of wealth.
Here we go again with symbols. Just show them a stack of 10,000 One dollar bills and let them handle it so that they know it is real. That would really enliven the study. The results of being shown this picture--they scored lower in their ability to savor experiences. Maybe they were thinking about the money. Where they would spend it.
Mercury_01
not rated yet May 27, 2010
Yeah, sounds like an arbitrary test. I will say though, that I, for one, hate the thought of money while Im trying to enjoy myself. To me, money is a total buzzkill. It evokes the analytical mind while the right hemisphere is having a good time. Kind of like when you are enjoying a brew on the ol' couchski, and your wife wants to talk about bills. You're like- "omg, stfu!"
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
The critical part of this study was the relation between excess wealth(more than adequate for simple comfort/financial security) and perceived happiness, because it exposes the question at the heart of the issue:
How much is enough? And hence, why is more than enough desireable, if it doesn't produce a proportional gain in Happiness? Why does the effort to achieve greater happiness by amassing excess wealth create a hole?
The answer is: that hole is an existential one in the spirit, and it cannot be filled with material possessions. Pursuit of Truth, and Compassion and Understanding of and for the World, and the people in it, is what fills that hole.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) May 27, 2010

Who do you want to decide, for you, when you have enough to be happy?


Aha!

Once again, Mangy seeks to defend his objectivist, greedhead, neocon views by deliberate misinterpretation.
Very simply, Mangy, the INDIVIDUAL decides what is enough wealth- which was quite clear in the context of my post.
What your response makes clear is that the hole of which I spoke is, for you, the equivalent of the hole in your head, which is equivalent to the hole in your ass.
We are all very well aware that you would, if able, arrogate all the wealth of the world to yourself. Greed is not Freedom. greed is, in fact, Slavery.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (2) May 27, 2010
Who do you want to decide, for you, when you have enough to be happy?

As an illustrious urban wordsmith once said.
Mo' Money, Mo' Problems
gwrede
1 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
What if the money just made them want to be more "efficient"? Then they'd eat faster.

Money, after all, is the carrot that makes us run faster.
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
The individual decides? Are you serious? What kind liberal socialist are you?


Are you saying that there is someone else that has the authority to decide when you have accumulated enough wealth?

Name this Authority, then.

It is true that there are any number of forces that may prevent you from accumulating what you might consider enough, but that is another story.
Your apparent inability to distinguish between the two is a clear indicator of your general lack.
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
Are you saying that there is someone else that has the authority to decide when you have accumulated enough wealth?

The president of the USA thinks some people make too much money as do Castro, Chavez and many other socialists.


Typical Mangy tactics.
Since the freemarket operates primarily in the "Free" world, most people would, of course, understand that these comments were addressed specifically to to the state of affairs in that milieu. Again, a distinction that you purposefully ignore, in an attempt to avoid addressing the issue.
The President's opinion regarding who has and has not accumulated enough wealth is entirely beside the point as you well know. Unless he is empowered to act upon that opinion, then your assertion is absolutely meaningless, and, since that is in fact the case, then you have once again affirmed the existence of the hole in your head.
Caliban
5 / 5 (1) May 27, 2010
Taxation is not the same thing as an arbitrary, imposed cap on what an individual can earn or accumulate, moron- I mean, Mangy.
probes
not rated yet May 28, 2010
Money don't matter 2night
It sure didn't matter yesterday
Just when U think U've got more than enough
That's when it all up and flies away
That's when U find out that U're better off
Makin' sure your soul's alright
Money didn't matter yesterday
And it sure don't matter 2night
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 28, 2010
If you want to find your food, build shelter, survive using your own labor and ingenuity, feel free. People learned a while ago it is more efficient to work together, divide the labor into smaller steps, reward people for becoming the most efficient at raising crops or building houses. Nature calls that specialization.
I call it communism.
Socialism is state control of your property, including your labor and your life.
Nope. Socialism is the state control by will of the people in terms of resources and productive action distribution. If you're going to use a term as often as you use socialism, you may want to know what it means.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 28, 2010
It does start to limit the income people want to make. If 75% of every new dollar earned goes to the government, why earn that dollar? People like Rush moved to FL to avoid those taxes. Bill OReilly said if taxes were too high, he would self-limit his income to avoid the tax, laying off some people in the process.
Two pillars of modern entertainment journalism....
Billy Mays was more factual in 30 seconds than these two are all day long.

Are you even affected by the "Millionaire's tax" Marjon? I am. I can speak to what the immediate economic rammifications will be to me. Instead of getting a fully loaded Audi S8, I'll get an all but fully loaded Audi S8. It's a pittance, and that's only if I can't itemize an additional 4% of my income, which I can.

It's a feel good initiative that will affect less than 10% of the population but produce enough tax money to assist 60% of the population. I don't have a problem paying it, and the majority of my contemporaries don't either
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 28, 2010
Marjon,

Aside from the fact you refuse to answer whether you're affected by the millionaire's tax, how much money is enough for you to live comfortably, have a small nest egg to retire on and lead a comfortable standard of living, as well as potentially having a little excess to donate or pass down to your progeny?

What dollar amount per year would that be?

I know what it is for me. I'm affected by the tax, and I'd still want it to pass.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 28, 2010
Good for you.

I will know when I get there.

So are you affected by the Millionaire's tax or are you just doing what the Millionaire Elite want you to do by rallying for a tax break for them?

You don't get it because you really are just that stupid. Easily led people, primarily devout American Protestants and Baptists are rallying against a tax that doesn't even affect them. Meanwhile, the people like me who are affected by the tax, who you're content to call an elitist, will pay it so YOU can get better services and benefits.

Yes, our tax system is a mess, and too few people pay into it, but the people who are rallying against the millionaires tax are not even affected by it in a negative way. You don't make more than 200k, of that I'm certain. So jsut who are you working for?

That's right, the Elite, you idiot.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 28, 2010
The millionaires tax affects everyone.
Then why couldn't you post a logical argument to that effect?

People who make over 200k don't eat at a chain restaurant often. Your job at Sizzler is safe, marjon.

Are you going to address my point or continue to wallow in your trough of stupid? Either way I don't care. I'll either get a tax break due to your efforts or I'll get to feed and clothe your family. It's a win win situation for someone who actually pays attention.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
If the government takes and wastes more of their money, even more people will be unemployed.
It affects everyone.
How? You have to explain it, not just say it's going to happen with no evidence.
If you don't like being so rich, again, drive a cheaper car and donate more money to the government.
First off, 200k per year isn't rich, it's upper middle class. And if you don't like being so poor, put down the Bible, read a science book and get a better job.
MA has a box you can check to pay at a higher rate. Did you check the box this year? It will make you happier.
I don't pay income tax in MA, however, when I did, I did not check the box because I was making about 80k. So if you'd like to continue down this path how about you answer my question.

If the tax takes from the rich and gives to the poor, there will be more poor feeding money into the economy. Free healthcare frees up over $200 per month for most individuals. They'll spend it, we all benefit.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Would you like to tell me how people are being rewarded by the government to not create wealth?

Perhaps you and I do have some common ground in what we don't like about government.

The role of government is to do for the many what the few cannot do for themselves. They are the bringers of infrastructure (clean water, basic health sevices, roads, judicial process) once they go beyond that point, they have grown too large.

So tell me, what are they doing specifically that doesn't enable personal liberty?
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet May 29, 2010
Bush cut taxes and the economy imploded. Hoover cut taxes and the economy imploded.

The amount of taxation doesn't drive the economic impact, the type of taxation does. Some taxes are utterly ridiculous, ie: transportation taxes, carbon taxes, medical device taxes, vice taxes, all improperly designed. The progressive tax system is used to create a base morality within the country. That is what I rebel against, and that should be what you rebel against as well.

A flat tax system where everyone pays based on use and income is what I am a proponent of. That way everyone knows what everyone else pays, and we'll all know that the level of taxation is just and fair. Do you disagree?
And they are failing to do all of the above.
I'm in complete agreement here.
That is your fallacy. The role of government is to protect private property rights.
But that isn't what you're saying or evidencing.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet May 29, 2010
Marjon,

Do me a favor, jsut say exactly what you want, flat out, no quotes or supporting statements.

Tell me exactly what you want government to look like and let's discuss it. Our opinions on the topic aren't that far out of line, we can come to common ground on this.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Go ahead and take a look at the bills passed under Hoover. He cut the marginal tax rate by about 30% so you're wrong. Stop listening to the Heritage foundation.

Secondly, you, sir, don't know what you want. That much is quite clear. You've effectively stated you want black to return to slavery, the restriction of nontraditional marriage, the removal of employee protections, the destruction of the interstate transportation system, a repeal of all health initiatives including medicare, the removal of checking accounts, credit cards, 401k's and the stock market. All granted by federal economic regulation, none of which is in the constitution.

Anything else you'd like to remove from society? After all, the Constitution is the only law you want from a federal perspective. Don't forget, you'll be freely arming every criminal, terrorist, and immigrant within the borders.

I'm sure that's a bad idea.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Do you know what a tariff is? It's a tax on foreign goods in order to coerce people into buying domestic. We can see how well that worked...
Prior to the start of the Great Depression, Hoover's first Treasury Secretary, Andrew Mellon, proposed and saw enacted, numerous tax cuts, which cut the top income tax rate from 73% to 24%. When combined with the sharp decline in incomes during the early depression, the result was a serious deficit in the federal budget.

That's from your own source.
The government has laws, but it is not enforcing them and is trying to prevent others from enforcing the same laws.
Your assertion government is required for people to live and prosper is false.

Well no kidding. When you don't enforce laws in a Republic, which is rule by law, the Republic ceases to exist.

What do you think would happen in this country if the government ceased to exist?

I know what would happen. We'd become Afghanistan. I'd rather not.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Where is your proof?
Name a country with no government that isn't like Afghanistan.
When the Pilgrims landed, their was no government and they created a limited government based upon basic principles of private property and free markets.
40 people is not the same as 40,000, and certainly not the same as 400,000,000.
Why don't you support a limited government that protects private property rights and promotes free markets?
Straw man argument. Show me where I said I don't support individual liberty and property.

You think everyone who isn't exactly the same as you has what you figure to be the worst intentions at the core of their argument. If you were capable of understanding anything that I've wrote, perhaps you wouldn't be arguing my point for me.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Afghanistan does have a government. Why is Afghanistan like it is WITH a government?
Afghanistan doesn't have a government, they have a mayor. You're a fool.
That is what you do.

Ha, debating you is no longer leading to productive conversation. We're done, have a nice day.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Running away after being exposed for a hypocrite?

When a disagreement breaks down into "I know you are but what am I" replies from one of the participants, the discussion has come to it's logical end. You haven't captured me in any sort of hypocritical trap, Marjon, you're trolling. The conversation has come to it's end, thanks for showing us your opinion on the various topics discussed.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
The modern nation-state is a very recent invention. It is only ~500 years old.
Ridiculous. Give us your definition for nation state.
bottomlesssoul
5 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Great study but as usual the real picture is more complicated. I suspect something more subtle happening, it's not the notion of money that interrupts real-time savoring. I think it's what money is the place holder for; trying to predict future happiness based on planning strategies that might be bumming people out.

There is also the need to separate out the effect where some people confuse the map for the forest and think money is 'real' so have potent placebo effects.

In the end I think it's a mix of phenomena with the dominant one being thinking about future problems or possibilities can ruin a cup of coffee.

One need only read the comments here to see a lot of coffees were ruined while reading the morning news, especially the article that studied how people felt about money while masturbating or something. Even reading about it in other people effected their momentary enjoyment of what ever they were doing in front of their computers.
magpies
1 / 5 (1) May 29, 2010
Hi guys. It seems to me that you are both *slow* and are completely missing the point.
thidwick
3 / 5 (2) May 30, 2010
The back and forth between marjon and the skeptic heretic was painful to read. Some folks seem to need for endless turmoil. Being perpetually defeated or rejected doesn't seem to matter. Endless arguing is the need. When caught off guard by the enemy losing, another battle which could never be won would be chosen. This sort of person is his own worst enemy, and because of that, he must fight endlessly. It's pitiful, pointless and ultimately destructive.
It sure isn't creative or conducive to creativity. Even if it suits his personal needs, it makes everyone miserable.
Actually it isn't entirely pointless. The person who battles endlessly gets to blame others for their own failures.
thidwick
5 / 5 (1) May 30, 2010
I am curious about where this endless debating springs from. I wonder if it is escapist, like sports are. Y'know, where people get all wrapped up in supporting or dissing teams as if it really mattered. The primary purpose might be to escape one's humdrum life, or to forget about one's personal failures or lack of success. Fans seem to feel like they "are" somebody, simply because they are supporters.
Likewise, supporters of one opinion or another can feel elevated by whatever Super Bowl goal they support. What is distressing is that it means the perfect is the enemy of the good. Making things better is lost because anything less than total victory is viewed as failure.
Where we are ultimately going is emphasized over where where we'd be after small changes. It's a headlong dive into unreality. It is my experience that most things that are worried about don't happen. And even if they do, hand wringing, debating or finger pointing don't get the problem solved.
Harriet
not rated yet May 31, 2010

If you want to find your food, build shelter, survive using your own labor and ingenuity, feel free. People learned a while ago it is more efficient to work together, divide the labor into smaller steps, reward people for becoming the most efficient at raising crops or building houses. Nature calls that specialization.

Where does the rewarding for efficiency fit into it? That's top down thinking mixed up with cooperative community behavior. It opens the door to inequality, coercion, and discontent.
Read "Ancient Futures", by Helena Norberg-Hodge for an example of a true natural order. ...Harriet
Caliban
1 / 5 (1) May 31, 2010
What is 'the good'?
That seems to be the fundamental argument.
To protect individual rights all must agree that individuals have individual rights that supersede group/species rights.
What is more important to you? Getting along or standing up for principles?


Highly amusing.

Mangy would like us to think that it believes that people have individual rights, and indeed, that it possesses principles.

The reality is that Mangy believes that it has(or should have) the Right(i.e. "Might") to take whatever it wants, by whatever means are convenient to it, with complete disregard for any others' individual rights, and that that is the greatest good.

Mangy will invoke or arrogate any argument, principle, or even claims of revelatory
"knowledge" to justify its selfish interests.

Mangy's principles consist of the constant application of sophistry to apologize for and defend its pseudointellectual argument that morality consists wholly in Mangy getting what it
wants
Harriet
5 / 5 (1) May 31, 2010


The mitochondria in our cells have unique DNA and specialize in creating energy. In exchange they are protected by the larger cell. Nature abounds with such relationships.


Right, but it has nothing to do with money. Money skews all values. I meant that you seem to be trying to illustrate the validity of a money-based economic structure by the example of natural systems and behaviors. They do not correlate.
Caliban
1 / 5 (1) May 31, 2010
Cali: Another data point to support my hypothesis that 'tolerant liberals' are not tolerant liberals when their core beliefs are rationally challenged.


Again- highly amusing.

You must be speaking of some other commenter here than yourself, Mangy, as you, yourself are incapable of developing any "rational challenge".

In fact, if one references the description of the pathology of "rationally challenged' in the DSM-IV, there appears a photo of Mangy.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) May 31, 2010
More last word thread hijacking drivel. How the mangy does run on.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) May 31, 2010
Based on its ratings, I'd say that mangy has been universally deemed as being non-contributory here.

Its last comment only answers its own question, and is by no means contributory. In case it hasn't noticed, discussion ended some time ago.

Now it is just mangy, in an echo chamber, endlessly reaffirming its own assertions.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) May 31, 2010
But a surprise awaits mangy: mangy has no intellect, and therefore the state of the Emperor's
dress is beyond quantification, scientifically or otherwise, except by the application of mangy's only tool- to assert and then reaffirm that assertion.

One-trick mangy!
Harriet
not rated yet Jun 01, 2010

Money is used to measure value. The analogy holds to market niches in nature.

This is getting too difficult to follow. I'll read about market niches. Looking quickly at the abstract that marjon mentioned makes me think we may not be so far apart.
But I hope you'll check out the Ancient Futures book, too.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 02, 2010
"...Ladakhis of Little Tibet were a happy people. They had a sustainable traditional economy based on trade and cooperation - not money. One person's gain was not another person's loss. There was plenty of leisure, no hunger or poverty, very little sickness or disease, everyone was valued, there was no pollution and nothing was wasted. "
It was not the absence of money that made them happy.
Free trade using money is no different than bartering, except bartering is less efficient. Free trade with money expands opportunities for trade and allows people to store wealth for the future. Free trade with and without money is win-win. No one loses as both parties trade for something they value more.
Someone said it was the love of money that was the root of evil. It was not money itself.
Eliminating money won't create Utopia.


What a bunch of boojum.
Next time you decide to chase your own backside, mangy, do the rest of us a favor- and disappear up your own hole.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 02, 2010
mney, money, money mangy.

The article has to do with the fact that people, while enjoying the state of happiness, experience an immediate and substantial loss of happiness at the MERE THOUGHT of money.

Rather than speak to the (quite interesting) findings of this researcher, mangy instead insists on rhapsodizing about its free market fantasy.

Why is mangy here? Meaningless money, money, money mangy.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2010
As people mature, they tend to find happiness in less hedonistic ways like seeing the children they raised become adults, self-sufficient, having grandchildren and watching them grow and achieve.
I didn't see any measurements of this type of happiness that does require some money to obtain.

So you've never raised a child, otherwise you'd know it's very expensive to do so. The reason for that expense is the need to work long hours and employ daycare. Many other nations have removed this need and increased happiness across the board regardless of class structure.
Why is mangy here? Meaningless money, money, money mangy.
Which is completely hilarious considering he's a Christian.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2010
I'll answer your questions after you answer this.

Since you're a Christian and by doctrine shouldn't be enamoured by monetary and material possessions, why do you care?
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2010
Why do you think I am? I am not the one who is 'happy' to downgrade his Audi to pay more taxes.

Right, so I'm more of a Christian than you are, that doesn't answer the question.

Why are you disobeying dogma, that you say is the perfect word of God, in order to argue about money, which you shouldn't care about in the first place? Basically, you're a hypocrite. You're content to be the moral Christian until someone wants something that you enjoy.

You're a greedy little NIMBYist.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2010
Jesus supported donation of wealth, not confiscation of wealth.

No, he supported poverty Marjon. His followers were to live in abject poverty. They were to give up their treasures on earth in order to accumulate treasures in heaven.

You spend a lot of time talking about people trying to take your wealth to give to someone else, even though that ploy is transparent at best, and insist that people are robbing others of their livelihood. Then you spout off something liek the Golden Rule and insist it's a Christian orgin doctrine.

So what is it Marjon? Pick your dogma. Are you to give up your wealth and be a Christian, or are you to voceferouosly defend your wealth and relinquish your Christian status?

You pick. This is your ideological trap. You've set and sprung it and now you need to make a choice. Adhere to your own doctrine or change your doctrine. I follow what I believe in, why don't you follow what you believe in?
Caliban
1 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2010

It is not up to you to decide how to use my gifts and talents.


And, apparently, "god" gave mangy the "gift" of hardened, and endlessly justifying, self-interest, to be wielded exclusively for its own benefit, regardless of any external(or, I daresay, internal) costs.

This "god" is Mammon, and this "gift" is the Objectivism of Rand.

But moron mangy doesn't realize that this provides the rationale for others to act the same way toward mangy. Perhaps this explains mangy's inability to attain millionaire status.

Golden Rule, indeed.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 04, 2010
I didn't know grace and wisdom were monetary Marjon. Last I checked neither Money, nor monetary gifts were part of the Christian ethos.

That's the funny part here, you're not Christian but you fight for them so hard, when the reality is, if you actually acted like a Christian no one would bother you.

How about you saddle up that horse of hypocrisy and ride off onto another forum, perhaps answersingenesis.com would suit your needs.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 04, 2010
I don't plan on taking advice regarding religion or economics from an atheist who supports socialism.
If your dogma was half as good with money as your typical atheist is then perhaps your evangelical leaders wouldn't need so much of it.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 04, 2010
Typical atheists are socialists and they love to spend other people's money.
Nice "scientific" generalization there.

Give us some peer reviewed evidence showing that Atheists are socialists. After all, the father of our country, Jefferson, was an atheist. Andrew Carnegie, famous capitalist and corporatist, also an atheist. Ben franklin, atheist, and the father of our pre-reserve monetary system. George Bernard Shaw, another atheist.

Just because we're godless and free doesn't mean we think everything should be for free. You don't know what an atheist is, only what your church told you an atheist is.
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 04, 2010
So you've shown that Leninists, a small sect of communists (not socialists), are all atheists.

That doesn't speak to what the rest of the large body of people who are atheists believe.

You're jsut completely wrong here.
Is it a coincidence that so many socialists are atheists? No God, no principles, no problems.
Is it a coincidence that so many Creationists, like yourself, make shit up? Is it a coincidence that they vehemently rail against all of science? Is it a coincidence that they're all just about the dumbest people you've ever met?
Harriet
5 / 5 (2) Jun 04, 2010
"...has overlooked one key insight: man’s nature does not change."


Marjon, you apparently accept the standard pessimistic view of human nature. I believe a fundamental part of our nature is to cooperate for the common good. Otherwise we would have killed ourselves off a long time ago.

In any case, I'm not advocating for a situation where there '"...is no need for money, no market exchange, and no property."' That wasn't true of the Ladhakis, either.


I don't see too many people living like the Ladakhis even when the have the money and time to do so.


It is not something that can be done in isolation.

The "primitive" Ladahkis actually lived quite comfortably, and their composting toilets are a much better method of waste management than ours. Flush toilets waste gallons of precious fresh water to remove a few ounces of waste, which then go to a huge, smelly, expensive facility that tries to return it to it's clean state.
Harriet
not rated yet Jun 04, 2010
Sorry, this was a repeat - there was a glitch in the submission process.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 05, 2010
Individuals cooperate for a number of reasons- some of which are altruistic in nature.
Quite a laugh to see mangy label cooperation a virtue when practiced for mangy's benefit, and dismiss it as mere necessity when engaged in by others.

Oh, the hypocrisy.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 05, 2010
And what xian, capitalist acts are pure altruism? Are you saying that only a xian capitalist can act altruistically?

More mangy moron hypocritical sophistry.
Harriet
5 / 5 (2) Jun 05, 2010

Individuals cooperate because it is in their self interest to do so.

Their true self-interest is fundamentally also their common interest. Personal desires are not fundamental.

I still don't see many people living with composting toilets. Must be a reason.

It's interesting that you keep going back to the flush toilet. In a way, it's a good illustration of how dealing with the unintended consequences of one "improvement" necessitated a monster infrastructure to support, and mitigate it.

Our "progress" has largely been a series of fixes for individual glitches, most of which don't work very well except in a limited way, or for a limited number.

Today, the way forward may well be by going back; learning some lessons from a population that thrived for centuries on marginal land by living within the limits of what was given.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 05, 2010
You asserted altruism as a reason for people to cooperate. As you support socialism and atheism, why make such an assertion?


Ah- so mangy asserts that atheism and socialism are INHERENTLY altruistic. Thanks, mangy!

One supposes, then, that xianity/capitalism must LACK altruism. How very sad and unfortunate for mangy.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2010
You asserted altruism as a reason for people to cooperate. As you support socialism and atheism, why make such an assertion?

Socialism and atheism are both altruistic things Marjon. Christianity by no way, shape, or measure has altruism on lockdown. Secondly, aside from the fact that you don't know what altruism is nor what socialism or atheism are this may be wasted on you.

Socialism by design requires altruism. Without altruism, socialism doesn't function. Charities are socialist. They function on taking from those who can give and redistribution of those assets to those who need them. Now Christianity isn't socialism because they use conditionals on their charity. To receive charity you must be a convert or claim christianity. This is effectively extortion. That's something you're against, aren't you?

Atheism doesn't require altruism however just like Christianity there are "good" atheists and "bad" atheists. The "good" atheists are, by nature, altruistic.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2010
Socialism and atheism are both altruistic things Marjon.


What a joke!
Then refute it.
The "good" atheists are, by nature, altruistic.

This statement has no basis in science as it cannot be falsified.

Neither does anything else that's labeled with the term "good" as good is a subjective experience.

Why don't you lay out what you consider to be Good qualities and let's see if I can find an atheist who fits them.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2010
Then refute it.

I did. See previous post.
You differentiated 'good' and 'bad' atheists. You define 'good' and 'bad'.

So you're saying that my definition is the same as yours. Then why did you call it a joke?
Harriet
5 / 5 (1) Jun 06, 2010

Maybe you need to define 'thrive'. Survival is 'triving'?
In nature, thriving usually means growing.

"Usually" means not always, and that's true. Overgrowing is not good.

Also, I did not say "survive", because I meant that they did more than that. What they produced in excess of their needs they bartered, or sold for non-essentials, and they enjoyed far more liesure time than we do. Winter was a time for visiting, feasts, and festivals.

Certainly they had to be hardy, but perhaps our lifestyles are too easy for our own good. (By easy, of course, I mean not physically rigorous.)

In any case, this no longer has anything to do with the article, which I found rather unconvincing. Certainly, for me, looking at a pile of someone else's money evokes a far different emotion from knowing I have it in my pocket. ;o) ...Harriet
Harriet
5 / 5 (1) Jun 06, 2010

someones desire to improve upon composting toilets. (My grandparents did not have a flush toilet or running water until 1965.)

I used an outhouse when I was a kid, too. Outhouses are not composting toilets. There's a vast difference between them.
And, of course, flush toilets were/are much appreciated. But they introduced a host of attendant problems.

Our lives are 'too easy' because people were not satisfied with the death, disease, starvation people faced.

Guess what, lots of people still face those things, and not because they are primitive, but because the self-sustaining systems they used to have were destroyed. Usually through western-style "developement", (Making our lives easy), or other meddling by dominant world powers.
you have a choice to accept or reject an 'easy life'. Your grandparents and great ....grandparents had few such choices.

"..for our own good" is all I said. We have to exercise.
Harriet
5 / 5 (2) Jun 06, 2010

They face those things because they suffer from tyrannical, corrupt, socialist governments that limit their economic growth.

I don't think we inhabit the same universe.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 07, 2010
They got that way by someones desire to improve upon composting toilets. (My grandparents did not have a flush toilet or running water until 1965. They were happy when they did.)
Our lives are 'too easy' because people were not satisfied with the death, disease, starvation people faced.
Because of those who came before, you have a choice to accept or reject an 'easy life'. Your grandparents and great ....grandparents had few such choices.

Then why wouldn't you want to share that happiness with the rest of the world? Don't you see how utterly selfish you are?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 07, 2010
It has been shared with the ROW.
So either you're saying that all of the world is quite capable of using flush toilets and don't because they choose to live in their filth, or you're saying something that has zero to do with the rest of your postings.

Clarify.
Harriet
5 / 5 (2) Jun 07, 2010

I agree. I live in the real universe.
Every third world country I can think of has a despotic corrupt government that doesn't protect property rights and allow their people the opportunity to acquire wealth.

And who props up the worst of them?
"A false realism as well as moral insensitivity characterizes American policy toward Third World dictatorships. There is a disturbing tendency to view such regimes in caricature, regarding right-wing governments as valuable friends whose repressive excesses must be ignored or excused, while perceiving leftist insurgent movements and governments as mortal threats to America's national interest, justifying a posture of unrelenting hostility."
by Ted Galen Carpenter
www.cato.org
But you're probably talking about the few who are struggling to nationalize their assets in order to keep from being exploited by globalization.

Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 07, 2010
Clarify.

Clarify what 'happiness' should be shared?

Seeing as the only happiness we're talking about is the happiness that your parents felt when they received an easement to their lives I think you can determine what I'm talking about and stop doing your silly little troll dance.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 07, 2010
Demand precision and give none? You waste many words saying nothing.
Rather than gloss over the whole conversation jsut a few short scrolls up for you I'll gloss over it so you can prove that you're an idiot yet again.

You state that your parents became happier by receiving the easements that welath and technology have brought them. I asked you why you wouldn't want to share this experience with the rest of the world, you said it has been shared.

My responce outlines that it has not, so I'm asking you to clarify how the happiness and easements afforded to your family have been shared with the rest of the world. You're being vague when given explicit requests. Why does this have to be so difficult with you?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
If the dairy farmer spends all his time milking cows, he will only have milk to eat as he has no time for anything else. So he must then cut his production to meet his family's needs so he has time to take wheat from the wheat farmer. But the wheat farmer only has enough for his family so the dairy farmer must spend more time raising wheat for bread and chickens for eggs. Such farmers will have nothing for the city socialists to take.
This is the dumbest hypothetical analogy I've ever seen. It's called technology. Do you think that there are several billion dairy farmers out there milking cows manually to supply the world with milk and bartering with the several billion wheat farmers of the socialist nations of the world? No, because if that were the case one of us would probably be milking a cow right now.

The study above shows that you're wrong in your determination of what makes people happy. The statements of your fellow man show you're wrong. Just admit it.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
Socialism works thusly in the modern world.

A governing body, government/church/dictator/senate/committee get statistics on the nation's productivity and needs. Using this data they establish baseline living conditions that ALL people will receive regardless of need or want. The governing body will then provide the baseline through donation/taxation/charity/and production.

That's socialism, that's what it does, that's all. If you don't like anything about socialism Marjon, the US is not the country for you and hasn't been since 1789.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
It has been tried and it has failed every time because the governing body has no way of measuring value. Even the Soviets figured this out.

Do you like Medicare?
Are you a fan of the fact that there is a highway system there for you to use?
Do you enjoy the fact that there's an educational system that you can use to keep your kids current in the fields of math, science, and gives them the basic skills needed to survive in the modern world?
How about the laws that prevent the electricity, water, oil, and gas companies from denying you service if you have a young child in the home?

That is all socialism and we've been living under it for a long, long time. Socialism is a mainstay of the American civilization, and currently a mainstay of the global civilization. The Soviet Union was Communism, communism is not socialism. Please try to keep your statements relevant and to one post. This isn't your verbal diarrhea dumping ground.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
What makes people 'happy' can be determined by their actions in the real world.
You socialists are wrong because you fail to acknowledge the real world, or as some call it, nature, and fail to respect your fellow human beings as individuals.
So is it more respectful to let someone starve to death because they lost their job, or do you think they'd prefer a sandwich?
So, SH disagrees with the world socialists vision of no money and no barter?
That is Utopian socialism, a very very small piece of socialism. Technologically we're not there yet, primarily because of people like you.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
It is when you create a government program that enables those individuals to stay unemployed.
That wasn't the question. If they had a program that allowed them to stay unemployed then they probably wouldn't be starving to death.
This will never happen in a real world as long as people are respected as individuals
You mean like the people making slave wages in the Free Market, right?
and have liberty to be responsible for their own actions.
So when did socialism remove the rule of law and personal accountability? Last I checked that is specifically what corporations are built for.
" Corporations are a beast by which one main gain personal profit while ignoring personal responsibility" - Meander

Your vision is the same as God's. Are you sure you are an atheist?
"Primates often have difficulty imagining a Universe not guided by an angry alpha male". Good work, monkey, you prove the quote correct.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
SH: How many starving people could you feed if you didn't drive an Audi?

Considering where I live, probably none. But since I work on systems that enable the biotech and agricultural industries to thrive I'd say driving my Audi I feed somewhere in the millions of people right now.

Let's say I bought a different car, some cheap piece of junk Focus or othersuch. I bought my car for 45k, the Focus right now would cost me about 10,000. So how many do you think I could feed for 35k? Not too many considering I'd spend more time in the repair shop with the Ford and burn more gasoline causing more problems for everyone on the planet.

Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
How can you support socialism?
Because I've actually lived under it and know what it's like.

How can you question it when you're ignorant of what the term means?

In Germany I drove a Mercedez, In the France I drove a Mercedez, in Canada I drove a Chevy Lancia(what a piece of junk that was) and only because the price of better vehicles was excessively steep. Marjon, I'm not sure what your knowledge of Socialist countries is but the whole "Red Menace" and Breadlines concept really only holds to the urban areas of Russia and then only during the winter.

Part of the reason the Soviet economy was so bad is because they were so technologically backwards due to their resistance against US technology.

So what exactly do you think happens under a socialist regime?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
Economic collapse. It is happening right before our eyes, Greece, California, even Germany is having problems.
Last I checked everyone is having a big case of economic collapse brought on by the free market speculation and lack of regulations of derivatives in America.
Toyota practiced something similar, just in time (JIT).
Ah yes, good ole socialist Japan, or didn't you know that Japan is a socialist country?
In the early 80s Finland heavily taxed cars for personal use. Taxis were not so they had very nice taxis: Volvo, Saab, etc. Market distortion is what happens.
Finlandia, home of the TEKES, which gave rise to the most powerful mobile electronic company in the world in the early 80's, Nokia. Nokia alone was responsible for over half of Finland's economy. Then when they took that giant black eye in 87 (due to US market interference on motorola's behalf) they started to crash. Couple that with the UN quotas on logging (again thanks US) and you can see why.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
Why are all of your examples jsut utter propaganda? Been listening to Beck a lot or just don't care to follow your source?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
Propaganda (?):
Yes, propaganda. You cut and paste articles written by dubious or uneducated sources and have little to no understanding of the source material. Nothing you've supplied to evidence your point has a source that can be followed back to it's origin without excessive work, which leads me to imply you're typing random buzzwords into Google and looking for paragraphs on blog posts that support your stance.

There's a reason why those aren't sourcable, because most of them are jsut Beck parrots and CATO wannabes who suck the corporate teat, like you, and have no idea what half the terms they decry actually mean, again, like you.

Here's a counter example of your "word salad" based attack.
Parasites survive by not killing the host, but they don't strengthen the host either. The host must expend more energy to feed the parasite (corporatists).

See, this isn't fun anymore, because unlike you, I actually put effort and thought into what I say.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
Could have fooled me.
You agree with socialists and atheists. Give them some credit.
If I agree with someone, and they say it better than I, I give them the credit.
So Marjon, you require agreement before you'll even consider the information. That's why you're so often wrong.
You asserted Greece was not a basket case due to excess government spending (socialism).
Care to show me where I said anything about Greece?

If anything I think Greece is having problems because they don't know how to count.
Greece's current financial mess unfolded when the newly elected socialist government revealed in October that the country's deficit was far larger than the previous, center-right government had let on--nearly 13% of GDP.
From: http://www.time.c...,00.html

So it appears the free marketeers, you know, the government actually running Greece prior to the election of socialists in October, LIED ABOUT THE MONETARY RESERVE. [tbc]
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
[cont]

Now doesn't that just toss a wrench into that example.

So effectively you're completely unable to come up with a single sourced rebuttal to anything I've said in this chain.

The socialists are fixing the problems brought on by the free market in Greece. Come up with some more examples so I can shoot those down too.

I'm far from a socialist, however I recognize the concept for what it is and see the potential benefit of it if we can ever get to that point. Problem is, jackass, under-educated people, like yourself, prevent us as a species from technologically advancing fast enough for this to become a reality.

Too bad for you guys, we have the internet now. Free speech will be the downfall of your religions, excesses, misinformation, and shoddy educational standards. Oh the times, they are a changin'
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
How? By spending other people's money?
Please keep reinforcing the theory of why liberals insult. Is this why you insult and rant? You keep lying to yourself?

Nice attempt at dodging the fact you've been proved wrong at every statement.

Marjon, I insult you because it's the only language you understand. You attempt to insult our intelligence by posting comeplete drivel and I produce the facts, refute your argument, and project my opinion of your statements upon your identity. Want me to stop? Then stop asking for it.
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
Greece didn't have economic maladies of this nature until the onset of false accounting begin in 2004 under the right-center party. The Hellenic congress is not akin to the US congress. Minority party, and opposition parties don't determine executive and legislative initiative in their governmental system. It's more similar to the UK in practice.

Seeing as you know nothing of Greek government, one must ask, is anything you say not completely suspect on the topic?
Skeptic_Heretic
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
And with this post I'm done with this article. Feel free to get the last word Marjon, no one is really interested in your fallacies any longer.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010

Greece had this problem long before 2004. In 2004, attempts were made to expose the corruption and SH blames those trying to fix the corruption.


Aided and abetted by the ever faithful, ever truthful, and ever ready to take a profit-regardless of consequences- GOLDMAN-SACHS, who were happy to assisst with accounting schemes to keep loans to fund the deficit spending habits of that regime out of the public's knowledge.

Your whole gig is nothing but holes, Mangy. this isn't in any way a surprise, since you, also, are a hole.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010

Your unsupported assertions and insults compared to a published journal paper?
Paper.


I repeat- mangy, meaningless noise blowing out of a hole. Your statements are holes, supported by holes, uttered by a hole.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010
"The reason Libs are using insults and illogic is to shut down public debate."


Mangy spends SO much time in the Quote Mine
-another hole to blow noise out of!
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 09, 2010

One more data point. Thanks.


Mangy wouldn't know a "data point" if it fell in the hole with mangy.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 10, 2010
If mangy collects enough "data points", perhaps there will be sufficient to make a little arm chair for the mangyhole, from whence to emit noise.
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 10, 2010
Soon, mangy will be able to settle into his new datapoint armchair and blissfully emit noise from the mangyhole.
Mercury_01
not rated yet Jun 12, 2010
What the hell are you people flaming about?? Grow up!
Caliban
3 / 5 (2) Jun 13, 2010
"Debate" can be stifled any number of ways, in your case, for example, by posting endless mined quotes, and assert/reassert posts. Should I characterize those methods as "conservative", or just "mangy"?
Skeptic_Heretic
5 / 5 (1) Jun 13, 2010
Then why did you insult the collective intellect of the readers by never coming to a point or having an argument of your own?

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