One of the popular examples of supposed Wall Street excess is the corporate jet. But it doesn’t matter if you’re talking about a jet, a $50,000 desk or a $1.2 million remodel. Any such examples is intended to serve one purpose: appeal to the human sense of jealousy.
But where does jealousy get you? If I’m not mistaken, and I’m not really a religious person but, jealousy is a sin – one of the seven deadly ones and also found in the ten commandments.
On a more practical level, what does it get you? Someone has enough wealth to purchase a private jet. So? No one should have enough wealth for that? It’s a very dangerous road to be on the side of telling other people what to do with their money or how much money they can have.
Plus, it misses the very real benefit to the rest of us. That person who purchased that jet is also creating jobs for the people who built it, the people who fly it and the people who maintain it – not to mention the people who house it, ensure its safety, etc.
Or the desk-maker. I would never spend $50,000 on a desk – even if I had $2 billion. But if someone does, that’s fine. If there’s a person out there whose craftsmanship allows them to sell a desk for that much and a person who wants to spend it, let’s hope they find each other. That’s capitalism.
Plus, just because someone spends a lot on something, doesn’t mean they have that much more. A person making $90,000/year could decide they want a $50,000 desk (for some reason… who knows), and so they purchase it and create a payment plan. Spending a lot on something that appears unnecessary doesn’t mean that person is wealthy.
The list of examples goes on, but the principle is simple – don’t spend mental energy deciding who can purchase what and how much they can spend on it. You may not think you make enough money to ever be in that situation, but if the government is giving you any money at all – even welfare – you’re just inviting them to decide what you’re going to spend it on, which is just a stone’s throw away from them telling you what you can and can’t do in other areas of your life as well.