Define greed

This is a discussion on Define greed within the The Foyer forums, part of the Off the Grid category; Originally Posted by Trader333 I dont judge because that implies a finality but I do make an assessment based on ...

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Old Nov 21, 2005, 1:09am   #16
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Originally Posted by Trader333
I dont judge because that implies a finality but I do make an assessment based on a number of criteria at the time of determining whether any given action was caused by greed or otherwise.

Judge/decide/assess - what's the difference?
Those who have knowledge don't predict. Those who predict don't have knowledge - Lao Tzu, 6th century BC poet
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Old Nov 21, 2005, 8:16am   #17
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Originally Posted by Dispassionate
Judge/decide/assess - what's the difference?
There is a great difference in my view if you have an understanding of the differences, however this has become a pointless discussion so that is it for me on this thread.

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Old Nov 21, 2005, 10:36am   #18
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This is a good question!

Originally Posted by trendie
Interesting and provocative question.

reminded me of communism !
"The followers of Marx and Lenin claimed to have a society based upon the premise "from each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs". "

Problem with that is that people will naturally try to attain the MOST by doing the LEAST.
( where a persons "needs" are greater than their "abilities". )

I would therefore define greed as someone who wants more than is rightly theirs.
That is, people who want things that are beyond what their natural talents would acquire.
( for example, unfit people dreaming of being gold-medal athletes;
under-educated people wanting to be promoted beyond their natural talents, and envious of theose better trained than themselves;
Traders desiring profitable outcomes greater than their ability to understand the nature of markets )

if you desire something beyond your abilities, you are greedy.( make a fortune in the stock-market with "just 5 minutes a day" etc )

Those you work hard to understand, and learn, and acquire understanding, will "earn" the right to be rich and successful.

You have asked a good question, and hope we can provide you with a wildly differing range of opinions to make you both glad and exasperated that you asked the question.

Good luck for next weeks trading.
Excellent points trendie!!!

I can't say that I disagree, but my interpretation is slightly different, however it also focuses in the same points. I think greed comes initially from a 'lack of' and from 'fear to get back there where I was unhappy'. I think greed has to be put in relation to the history of the personal experiences. I'll try to explain using my cat. I rescued her. She was starving. Now everytime there is signs of food around she goes mad, even if she ate 2 mins ago. I think she's anxious about not having food again, because she experienced both and she knows how bad is to be hungry, and after she learnt that life can offer more than that, this is, eating properly everyday, the relative unhappiness of going hungry is even worse. A stray cat is not greedy. It's not expecting to get better, and it's very happy with the little he finds. My cat, fat, contented, and with a full bowl of lovely food all the time is really greedy. With humans I think it works in a similar way, with subtleties, of course. I think your argument of aspiring to have more than you deserve is good, but I'd look at it from what you think about yourself, instead of an absolute scale. I'll try to be more clear: I don't believe in god, I don't believe that there is someone who is going to decide what you deserve and what you do not deserve. However I think that you can feel you don't deserve this because you are not that nice/good/hard-working/lucky person you'd like to be. For example, if you're very hard working and you can't get it right, you can start to think that the world is divided among lucky and unlucky people, and that hard work is the only thing you can do but it's not going to change your destiny. Then that wonderful thing happens to you, and you remember that you are in the unlucky side, but you don't want to be there anymore. And the brilliant thing is happening to you and you don't want to see the end of it, because inside yourself you believe that this is not going to happen again to you. You dream about how lovely is to be in the lucky side, and how miserable to be in the unlucky one. Your fear mixes with your success and you enter in a state of panic that it's only overcome by getting more of the nice cake. You're blind now because you don't want to see, and reality it's only too hard to accept. That's my opinion. And I think that if this is the case, the solution to the greed problem is to come to terms with the way you position yourself respect to the rest of the world, and come to terms with what your believes are.

Good trading!

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Old Nov 21, 2005, 2:12pm   #19
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A great thread!

A point I would like to add is why is greed considered a bad thing? Greed in itself is a good thing i believe but has been distorted through religion and social views that were installed in our culture centuries past when times were bad and by making people feel comfotable with their lack of luxury or hopes of being in a position to be called greedy was a great way to appeal to them to and recruit people to whatever cause they were fighting for at the time. (this is a very broad view but to go into the history of societies views on certain things would take for ever and rake up some sensitive ground which i wouldnt like to do)

I believe greed is often misinterpretted and to many people it is wanting too much, but what is too much? This is relative to each individual, to a starving child in Africa eating 3 healthy meals a day is grosely exceeding what is available to people around him (would this person be greedy in the eyes of his community if he ate 3 meals a day?)

To better oneself is the most basic human instinct after reproduction, if it wasnt for our ancestors millions of years ago deciding shivering at night in the on the land they walked around was not the life for them and their living standards could be increased by adding shelter and warmth where would we be now?

I think greed is what drives people forward and contrary to what some people believe other people benefit from the greed of another person. Even the poorest people in the UK and US are some of the richest people in the world because we live in a society where people are allowed to attempt to succeed in things that will reward them in a way that will make them greedy in the eyes of some people. When a man sets out on a journey to become a billionaire they are doing this by creating a product or service that enhances other peoples lives, they create jobs, they pay millions in taxes etc etc. If we lived in a world where the mentality was to accept what we have and not try and achieve rewards which are more than what we need to survive at a basic level we would live in a very basic and poor world.

The only time greed can be considered a bad thing is when people create wealth without creating a product or service equal to that value. Bill Gates has more money a man could spend in a life time but he has also created software that has revolutionised most of the world, therefore he is rewarded with what his product is worth, this is fair and not greedy in my opinion.
On the other hand people that steal, lie and decieve are greedy because they are getting money by not creating something for society to benefit from. A man that sits at home and refuses to work because they can recieve more money from the government than they are likely to earn in the job market is therefore greedy because they recieve money without creating any value.

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Old Nov 21, 2005, 3:13pm   #20
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I disagree, depends on how you see greed. To my view there is no connection between accumulating wealth and greed except the latter tends to negate the former. What you do with the wealth after you have got it is another argument.
Greed is where every nerve of experience in your body is trying to tell you the rational action is X and your emotions (greed) just won't have it and insist upon doing something that is not actually in your self interest. Weigh up the two alternative outcomes and in the long run greed costs you. Simple as that. Nothing good about it at all. In fact it's just plain stupid.
Distance = Perspective
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Old Nov 21, 2005, 3:20pm   #21
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Originally Posted by Dispassionate
What is greed exactly? Not looking for a dictionary definition here!

Wanting more than you've already got, for no apparent reason other than having more than anyone else.
Every market has a bottom, every bottom has a hole in it.
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Old Nov 21, 2005, 3:38pm   #22
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HI Chump,

I believe you are correct in saying what you do with it is a factor but i also believe this is misinterpreted. Say for example you are very wealthy and go out and buy a Ferrari a Porsche and a Range Rover, but you live in London, you travel everywhere by tube and have need for use of a car once a week is it greedy you having all those cars?.... I say no. You only live once and you are entitled to spend your money how you want without guilt, thats just my personal opinion but if you look at it from an economic point of view you have given business to Ferrari Porsche and Range Rover, by giving them business you are adding (in a small way) to increasing their profits, their profits get taxed which spreads your money to hopitals schools etc, you increase the value of their business which increases share price and makes money for their investors, you create demand for their services which in turn leads to the companies hiring workers thus creating more jobs. The effects go on.

I believe not spending money however is greedy because the money is not working for anyone, who are we to say what a person can and cant spend money on? (as in the above example) but if you make money and not put it to use you have no need for it and therefore that could possibly be argued as greedy. We live in a very privaliged society because people have money to go out and spend it on not only the basics in life but also the luxuries, if for example the human race changed its views on lusting for the better things in life or were not greedy (in the materialistic sense) and we no longer spent money on luxuries all the companies that provide this service would go out of business, jobs would be lost, less money would be paid in taxes and we would eventually be in a state of hyper inflation because there would be so much money in circulation chasing no goods.

I agree with you when you say what you do with your money is an aspect of greed but personally i believe only in the sense if you do nothing with it you are not putting it to use and that is greedy. So i suppose I would define greed as having the means to experience/purchase more than you actually want. But i believe it is very wrong to dictate what people are allowed to want.

So I think we are in agreement with each other if I have understood your post

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