Wealth, happiness and liberty
Restricting liberty to prevent self-destruction has the makings of a nanny state that can lead to unhappiness
The relationship between wealth and happiness has a long lineage. Aristotle had wondered whether wealth was at all useful if it was not a means to “something else". There is a fair degree of consensus that this something else is happiness. What exactly is happiness, and how to achieve it, is however not at all clear. At the root of the problem lies the complex, often counter-intuitive and paradoxical, and non-linear relationship between wealth and happiness. Also, while wealth gives one greater freedom of choice, the notion of liberty is more implicit than explicit in this debate. It is however central not only to happiness but also, as we shall see, to unlocking man’s true potential.
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