Saturday, 27 December 2014

A millionaires’ world


How many people base careers on the idea that only modest wealth is required to float above the common herd? Quite a few as far as I can see. So how much wealth is enough to get an ambitious chap airborne?

Surely a million or two is sufficient to live in modest comfort, have everything fixed which needs fixing and consign money worries to oblivion. With property prices as they are, that’s attainable for many via house price inflation. Add in a second home, a decent salary and some expenses and the job’s done.

Modest wealth has always been the only practical way for ordinary folk to float above the masses, to escape their daily need to survive. Make it, marry it or steal it - that was the choice. In former times the local clergyman, doctor or schoolmaster made enough to float above the yokels but not in all cases. Times could be hard for professional people who never quite cut the social mustard.

A constant nagging need to survive has virtually disappeared from the developed world, but floating above it all still has its attractions. Money does indeed buy happiness if happiness is comfort and a degree of  freedom from anxiety. Money buys other freedoms too and a modern attraction is that it has become a much more realistic prospect for ambitious folk on the wrong side of the glass ceiling.

It seems to me that a large slice of public life is the spectacle of wannabe floaters trying their level best to acquire their flotation aids. An MP’s salary isn’t particularly generous, but as we have seen in recent years, that’s no obstacle to getting hold of a modest million or two. Expenses are made to be fiddled. Doors open. Sinecures beckon.

And don’t they know it?


Sackerson said...

Yes. All those articles about public sector workers who earn more than the PM - but ignore what the ex-PM makes.

Demetrius said...

But it has all become a great deal more complicated than it used to be with too many extra variables. Flotation aids can work in ordinary times, but not when the typhoons or hurricanes come along. And they seem to be getting a lot more frequent in financial systems these days.

A K Haart said...

Sackers - yes, Blair being a good example.

Demetrius - I suppose that explains why they put so much effort into keeping the show on the road.

James Higham said...

A constant nagging need to survive has virtually disappeared from the developed world

Until next year of course.

A K Haart said...

James - maybe the year after (: