Friday, June 20, 2014

"I'll be in my basement room..."

---------------------------- [continuing (and concluding) "For the Love of Money" -- written by Sam Polk, Jan. 18, 2014 NYTimes] ----------------------

Dozens of different types of 12-step support groups -- including Clutterers Anonymous and On-Line Gamers Anonymous -- exist to help addicts of various types, yet there is no Wealth Addicts Anonymous.  Why not? 

Because our culture supports and even lauds the addiction. 

Look at the magazine covers in any newsstand, plastered with the faces of celebrities and C.E.O.'s; the superrich are our cultural gods.  I hope we all confront our part in enabling wealth addicts to exert so much influence over our country.

I generally think that if one is rich and believes they have "enough," they are not a wealth addict. 

On Wall Street, in my experience, that sense of "enough" is rare. 

The money guy doing a job he complains about for yet another year so he can add $2 million to his $20 million bank account seems like an addict.

I recently got an email from a hedge-fund trader who said that though he was making millions every year, he felt trapped and empty, but couldn't summon the courage to leave. 

I believe there are others out there. 

Maybe we can form a group and confront our addiction together.  And if you identify with what I've written, but are reticent to leave, then take a small step in the right direction. 

Let's create a fund, where everyone agrees to put, say, 25 percent of their annual bonuses into it, and we'll use that to help some of the people who actually need the money that we've been so rabidly chasing.  Together, maybe we can make a real contribution to the world. -------------------------- [conclusion of the article]

-- Sam Polk is a former hedge-fund trader and the founder of the nonprofit Groceryships.


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