Saturday, June 06, 2009


Jeannie's got me thinking about the subject of greed.

We seem to associate greed with those who always want more, and are prepared to do anything to get it. We tend to blame the GFC (Global Financial Crisis) on greed.

In fact, a friend of mine was talking about her colleagues and how greedy they were. These people are greedy in perverse way. They deny themselves the comforts of life out of greed.
These are the hoarders who cannot bare to spend a cent to help themselves.
In fact one of them is my father for example who frets about not having enough to live on( he is 80) while he sits on a fortune in real estate and calculates that he will live for another 30 years and worries about how he will manage financially. Meanwhile he preaches the imminent end of the world (he's a Jehovah's witness).

One of the biggest telco corporations in Australia, Telstra practices (and has always practiced) price gouging on its consumers because its always had a monopoly on supply of services. Greed on a corporate level.

I wouldn't be so quick to condemn those who are obese as greedy. The fact is that it is usually the most impoverished in the community who tend to be obese. It's an interesting paradox isn't it? In India, those who are overweight are considered wealthy.

As for the GFC, I wouldn't put it down to greed as much as a failure in the economic system. Capitalism isn't perfect and it is an evolving beast. Evolution of any organism allows for mistakes is random and opportunistic.
The economic system is an organism of sorts and has been evolving for hundreds of years.
In my mind, what we are witnessing is a shake-up, an adjustment, a development that will change our perceptions of capitalism and maybe the change the course in that we will no longer value greed as the engine that drives the economy.

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Jeannie said...

Interesting points. The fact that the obese are often the less well-off can be explained similar to the kids. They are greedy where they can be. High fat, high carb food is cheap and tasty and addictive.

Anonymous said...

Great post, Lexcen.
I struggled with greed as a child, but I think it's quite normal at that stage in development.

Corporate greed is redundant to me. Aren't corporations supposed to make money? Are they REALLY supposed to serve the public? I know there's a line to cross where money becomes more important than humanity, but our groupthink society is teaching us that anything 'corporate' is inherantly bad.