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Old 07-12-2013, 04:28 AM   #855 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by freebeard View Post
I don't see the distinction*, unless we are talking about gold-plated faucets and such. Clucking one's tongue at the way the wealthy squander what they have is fun, but beside the point. It only takes one person like Elon Musk, to make up for a lot of Paris Hiltons.
The distinction is that past a certain level of material wealth - I have seen reference in a few places to ~U$15000/yr - human happiness does not increase with increased material wealth. After that it only matters that you have more than other people do.

I wouldn't care what people - including me - did if it didn't imperil the basis of (current) civilization.

As admirable as Elon Musk's effort is, it is the system that is wrong. Even if you want to, knowing what is required, it is very difficult to step outside it alone.