Why is the goal of humans to have so much money that our job then becomes to manage this pile of money?
Seems sort of stupid.
And to me, exhausting. To me, there is nothing more boring or disinteresting than spending all your time and energy thinking about tax strategies and alternative investments.
Even if you do it well, what does all of that money get you? A marginally better life? A fancier vacation? Meh, not interested. Instead of money helping us, it hurts; it creates new problems.
Life is too short to constantly be thinking about how we can build a pile of money that we never use. What usually happens is that someone will work hard, be diligent, make wise investments, and then die. That money then goes to relatives who blow the money like a rapper in a strip club. Or worse, they add your pile of money to their pile of money.
The point of money should be to afford a life that’s comfortable and helps you meet your goals. Money is a form of exchange. You earn a wage and can then trade those credits to others for goods and services. You can’t take it with you when you die.
Money feeds greed. We really can’t go a single day without seeing all the ways that the wealthy fuck others. Rich politicians hide taxpayer money abroad to buy fancy homes, business owners steal workers’ wages to hit the billionaire list, and we pour toxic chemicals into our drinking water to drive the company stock 1% higher.
We use expensive lawyers and accountants to find the most tax-advantageous hidey-hole that perverts the entire system. Our country invests in building innovation and talent and then gets none of the rewards because the wealthy figured out that we can avoid taxes and hide funds in Ireland.
Somewhere along the line, we tricked ourselves into stockpiling money for no other reason than self-indulgence. We create new problems when all we think about is our big ol’ money pile. We fret over fluctuations in the stock market, we panic over the Chinese real estate market, we can’t sleep because of inflation.
Then we have all the strategies where individuals can “hack” the system with schemes like FIRE. This is where individuals scrupulously save for years and invest to hit some target and then quit their jobs. All their talent and skills go to waste instead of helping to advance society or help other people. They sit in their homes, hit refresh on their retirement accounts, and calculate how many years they can go on like this.
When do we reach enough? When do we realize that we have enough for ourselves and start to use our money to help others? Without strings, without or names on the building, or without self-interested motivations?
It seems that having money fundamentally warps the way people think.