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12-06-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paullw
I meant that we don't deserve a better life than the other 80% of people on the planet who live in abject poverty. Its a fact that those of us in richer countries consume far more than we need, and far more than our 'fair share'. The richest 20% of the world accounts for over 80% of total consuption.

We take up more than our fair share of fish, meal, total energy, electricity, paper, use around 85% of the worlds cars, on 1995 figures. If the world is suffering, as it clearly is, from shortages of many of these resources, or pollution problems caused by them, without the other 80% of the world even consuming their share, then we must be being materialistic. I don't blame people for wanting more than they need, as I said, I think it is just part of human nature to be materialistic. Its always going to cause us problems.

As Gandhi said: "The world can provide for the needs of everyone, but not for their greed."
Sure, but materialism is not greed. I can be greedy and uncharitable and live in Bali in a palace of gold, right next to starving children, and at the same time, not be materialistic because I have another priority to pursue philosophy and love and nonmaterial things.

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12-06-2005
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I get what both faust and PaulW are saying. And I think that I agree with both to a certain extend. Of course, anyone can live in all the comfort they want, but it just seems so unfair compared to all the people in Third World countries. It seems to be going to far sometimes. A good example of where it has gone too far is the annual salary of proffesional soccerplayers in Europe. It's crazily huge. All they do is kick a ball and abrakadabra, another million. And then to believe they nag when they have to bench for one game. You're getting that million anyway, so sshht....
But still I wish everyone all the comfort they can get and let's face it...if God Almighty gave me the chance to trade my contract at a local theme park with the contract of Beckham at Man United, I'd definetly bite...

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12-06-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr-Dale
I get what both faust and PaulW are saying. And I think that I agree with both to a certain extend. Of course, anyone can live in all the comfort they want, but it just seems so unfair compared to all the people in Third World countries. It seems to be going to far sometimes. A good example of where it has gone too far is the annual salary of proffesional soccerplayers in Europe. It's crazily huge. All they do is kick a ball and abrakadabra, another million. And then to believe they nag when they have to bench for one game. You're getting that million anyway, so sshht....
But still I wish everyone all the comfort they can get and let's face it...if God Almighty gave me the chance to trade my contract at a local theme park with the contract of Beckham at Man United, I'd definetly bite...
That's fixable - if people stop buying tickets, then the salaries will go down. But, how do you fix this: in 1970, top 1% of executives in the US took $220 home for every $1 that the 99% of other employess took; today it's $18,000 for every $1. Even the middle class is starting to erode.

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12-06-2005
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Exactly, theoretically it's fixable...but practically it's just impossible. Which is too bad....

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12-06-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seraphelle
Sure, but materialism is not greed. I can be greedy and uncharitable and live in Bali in a palace of gold, right next to starving children, and at the same time, not be materialistic because I have another priority to pursue philosophy and love and nonmaterial things.
Materialism refers to how a person or group chooses to spend their resources, particularly money and time. Literally, a materialist is a person for whom collecting material goods is an important priority. In common use, the word more specifically refers to a person who primarily pursues wealth and luxury.Sometimes such a person displays conspicuous consumption.

You'd definitely be displaying conspicuous consumption, and collecting material goods would seem to be an important priority for someone living in a gold palace.

Materialism refers to how a person or group chooses to spend their resources, particularly money and time. Literally, a materialist is a person who is preoccupied with material, rather than intellectual or spiritual, pursuits. However, especially since the 1960s, in common use, the word more specifically refers to a person who primarily pursues wealth and luxury, typically at the expense of personal relationships, charity, and/or the world's environment.

At the expense of charity, and/or the world's environment. If you weren't actually materialistic, you'd be pretty close.

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12-06-2005
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So everyone is materialistic and has been since the beginning of time.

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12-06-2005
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conspicuous consumption.is the key and this goes back to the French revolution and colonialism.. strange to see our society has not developed its ways too much

but is this human nature? how can one says that what happens in western societies for a mere 300 years of humanity defines human nature ? its obscure ...

people didnt use to live this way you know?
those last 300 years has been just a -sore- blink of the eye in history of humanity.. but they dont define the essence of human nature

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12-06-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexN
So everyone is materialistic and has been since the beginning of time.
yep.. everyone but ME Alex

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12-06-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lena
yep.. everyone but ME Alex
Ummm...yeah, and me. I rise above it.


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12-06-2005
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In a way. At the beginning of time we struggled to survive, we're the result of millions of years of evolution, all aiming towards being the biggest, the best, the strongest. We have always had to fight for food and shelter, had to earn them somehow. Now most of us don't, so we fight for ever increasing comfort, at least thats how I see it. How can we really turn our back on millions of years of development and instinct? As great as we think we are, we are essentially the same as all the other animals.

I used to have two kittens, they were always fed from one bowl, the bigger one used to eat more than its fair share, even though there was always enough. It got fat while the other was always a bit too skinny. It didn't need to take that much, but it always did, we're the same.

In the end, the bigger cat got run over, I guess Malthusians would like that.

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12-06-2005
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the evolvment of human nature is materialistic greed?
you cant be serious now paullw..

spend spend spend, promote human nature
whatever

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12-06-2005
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Lena and Paullw, I think humans are predisposed to accumulate stuff, in a way, to want to be comfortable and safe and well-fed. I don't think luxury items are part of that "survival instinct"...

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12-06-2005
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i think all forms of beings are inclined to live a better and better life. today, in most 'civilized countries' people no longer have to worry really about the basic neccessities. Food, shelter, security, clean water and healthcare are staples of a middle class existance. (not all have these things, but most do)

with all of the basics taken care of, what are people to do with their time? they watch television. television promotes a certain lifestyle. in the last 25 years there has been a HUGE entertainment industry boom. not just in terms of actors and actresses, but companies that cater to this affluent clientele.

we all want to live a fairy tale existence.

we're force fed it since birth with all the Cinderellas and Prince Charmings and their magnificent castles and gold scepters. celebs are modernities answer to this. people use their cash to buy into this lifestyle in hopes that it will be their white knight.


maybe if they buy the newest HD TV they too will live a life that ends happily ever after.

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12-06-2005
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if only it was so easy ocean.. the world was going to be a much happier place
but comsuming doesn bring happines.. it brings just more consumption, cause after you buy one thing, you start wanting something else, its the basis of the capitalist system..

you work, you get payed, you spend, you get a loan, you spend more, you work more, you get one more loan, you buy more, then you work some more, one more loan then you buy again

excuses sounds too nightmare-ish to me

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12-06-2005
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precisely

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