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william clegg

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Should we view wealth hoarding as dysfunctional as any other form of hoarding?

We tend to view those who acquire and accumulate "stuff" endlessly as hoarders who are dysfunctional and requiring health care assistance. Therefore, those whose lives are an endless accumulation of wealth and who use that wealth for little more than acquiring ever more "stuff" and/or endlessly stimulating as many pleasure centers as they can as often as then can seem to fall into that dysfunctional category.

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Closing Statement from william clegg

We had quite a lively debate ensued on this topic. The majority of comments suggest that hoarding wealth is, in fact, dysfunctional and many offered insightful ways in which they saw that dysfunction being played out in the real world. They also point out that the harm caused by a wealth hoarder is generally imposed upon their community while for other forms of hoarding it is the hoarder themselves who bears the brunt of that behaviour.

There were a few who were opposed to the hoarding label and who appeared to have no problem with the endless accumulation of wealth, largely because they seem to believe that the wealth was still being invested but offered no validation of this premise. As well that seems to be a rather specious argument if all the investing does is acquire more wealth.

It was pointed out a number of times that hoarding can have very real health issues involved, both psychological and physical. However, whether those health issues are as problematic for the wealth hoarder who has estates with lots of gates, security and staff to hide behind as they are in the poor and middle class who are far more visible is uncertain. Although the number of wealthy celebrities who have overdosed on drugs and/or alcohol abuse may be one indicator.

But the most humorous comments appeared to take real umbrage with the mere suggestion that wealth was being hoarded and even employed old 20th century commie fear mongering to make their - rather dull - point. .

It seems that for the majority of contributors hoarding is hoarding and as such is as dysfunctional as other forms of hoarding but that we all experience the consequences of that dysfunction. .

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  • Oct 22 2013: There is a big difference between those who accumulate things versus those who accumulate wealth. Wealth can be propelled forward through generations, raising the standard of living for one's progeny. There is nothing wrong with wealth, or the accumulation thereof. There is a reason that Hollywood Stars and the like decry wealth, yet refuse to just give it away. Linking the two is comical.
    • Oct 24 2013: could there be something wrong with the way wealth is accumulated?

      i think hollywood is a good example where both the good and bad of wealth is prevalent. you've got some stars who spend all their money on private jets and drugs, and you've got other who donate $1m at a time to aid agencies around the world, as well as donating their time.

      hypothetically speaking, a hollywood actor could get rich by either doing a really good job, or buying up production companies to see that no-one else gets the high-paid jobs. i would say there's nothing wrong with the former method of accumulating wealth and everything wrong with the latter.

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