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Hakana Williams

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What would you rather choose, power or money? Are they necessary for humanity's well-being?

My partner is currently studying business and one day he asked me 'what would you rather choose, power or money?', at first I instantly said neither (I despise the both because of the negative impact and damage I have seen them do to people). He insisted that I had to choose either one, so after putting a fair bit of thought into it, I chose power. I chose this not because I wanted to have authority over other people, but because I wanted to have that little more acknowledgement, especially from those more stubborn and ignorant, so they can hear me speak about peace, ending war, equality and so on.

He of course was asked and answered this question from a business perspective (our debate over this is still in session). However, I am interested to see what others would choose and why. Also, is having power and money necessary for humanity's sustainment upon this Earth? If we designed our world in a different accordance than what it has become, for example, where we didn't have to buy things, we didn't have presidents or prime ministers etc. would we have been as successful in development as now?

Topics: money power
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    Sep 6 2011: Money.

    The more money in my hands, the less money in, say, Dick Cheney's hands doing evil. That is the one good thing about this idiotic zero-sum attitude we have (as a species) toward basically infinite resources - especially in the absence of a gold/silver/whatever standard.

    (Though frankly, I would prefer to destroy the concept of currency altogether. That's just a compromise.)
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      Sep 10 2011: Interesting argument. Essentially you are trying to take power away from the likes of Dick Chenney (a noble calling if there ever was one) by devaluing his money. Why not instead just go for the power. Although you having more power does not mean our friend Mr. Chenney has any less it does mean its is harder for him to abuse that power.
      As for me I see nothing wrong with power as long as it's wielded ethically. You want something accomplished go for it as long as it does not trample the rights of another. Money without power equals lots of bribes.
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        Sep 11 2011: I have problems viewing power as a zero-sum situation, whereas we have deliberately (if not foolishly) set up finances as such.

        For me power is what we give up in participating in the social contract - but there is always more to be given. Cash, on the other hand: the more in my hands, the less out there in the wild doing evil.
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          Sep 11 2011: I would never consider power a zero sum game. Sorry if I gave you that impression. People have much more power than they are aware of, or even know how to use fully. I don't believe power is something you give up, but rather get better at using with practice. This can of course be negative or positive depending on intention.
  • Sep 18 2011: Power or money? Why choose when in our world these things seems to come together?

    But OK... If really I have to only choose one, let me think:

    If I choose money, I will fear robbers, my children are going to be spoiled and they will grow up in an artificial comfort bubble that is far from reality. But at least I'll finally have the funds to give to charity and help the needy in the whole world (By the time I get the money, I'll probably change my mind for an Aston Martin.)

    If I pick power, is it unlimited power or is it just as much power as a President who is puppeteer-ed by the huge companies who invested in his mandate? Nevertheless, with great power comes great responsibilities... And I'm not sure I'm quite ready to take up all these responsibilities.

    I guess I'd pick power, though it would scare me to death, I could more easily make a difference.

    But then this is probably just a random rant from a poor student who has neither power nor money. What do I know about power and money since I don't have any?
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    Sep 7 2011: power

    If you have enough of that you can start acting like a political robin hood.
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    Sep 6 2011: If I choose power the money comes with it and as I choose money the power comes, so what's there to choose?

    As for your second question, untill recently the human population went on without money very well but there always was power. We can't avoid it because it is in our nature. Power can however be used and abused and how do we prevent this from happening?
  • Sep 5 2011: Hello Hakana,

    I do choose power over money. I believe power can be seen in many different ways that change the idea of power as we know it. Power is not necessarily something a leader exerts onto an array of people. It does not necessarily have to elevate you into a high position. Power can be something that you have, which sustains you as an equal of society. Power can be something that you have, which motivates others and empowers others. In fact, I have power. You have power. Everybody on this Earth has power. The power to change the world.

    In my opinion, power is a more effective way to build human connections and ACTUALLY SOLVE PROBLEMS, where money falls extremely short. By treating others as we would like to be treated, by not degrading others or elevating others below or above us, we make relationships more meaningful and can work together to solve big issues.

    Money, however, is a band-aid fix. Giving money does not fix a problem. It may make the receiver (most likely a poor person or group of people) happy for a moment, and will make the giver happy for a moment as well. But has money actually gone to the core of the problem? Even after they receive money, are they still poor? Yes

    If we want to help that poor group of people, it is our duty to treat them as our equals, which money fails to do. Money says that we are richer than a group of people that are disadvantaged. We should HELP them.

    In fact, we should reach out to them...find out how we can fix the problem, and together, FIX IT.

    Power sustains us, not money.

    -Michael
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      Sep 6 2011: Hey Michael,
      I completely agree with your comment. I too believe power is more effective, and that there are definitely positive outcomes from it, if used wisely. There are some great points here that I can use to further explain/debate with my partner.

      Thanks for your comment mate :)
      Have a good one.