Can Consumption Equal Happiness? Essay

Can Consumption Equal Happiness? Essay

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Can Consumption Equal Happiness?
The question of happiness and consumption have been a topic for researcher for many years. This question has be explored, analysis, and presented with varying conclusion. Each one of these has provided more information that has help lead to a closer understanding of this topic. The problems face with these researchers is the complexity of these topics. Happiness is an output that is very subjective to everyone and has many different variables to it. The same is with consumption. It has many different inputs and each one type of consumption doesn’t have the same effect as other.
Even so, the outcomes of coming closer to the relationship is an important one. Hsee, Yang, Li, & Shen (2009) discussed that knowing if a happiness is relative or absolute can help inform weather improving wealth and consumption from one generation to the next can make the next generation happier. This in itself is something at every generation has been striving for. Each generation has had made their best attempt of making this a reality and this data can help facilitated this.
In hopes of facilitating this processes, there are two areas of discussion that will be covered. The first of them is the differences of absolute and relative happiness. Both involve happiness but are measures in different ways. Each one has cause a debate on which
Absolute and Relative Happiness
In Hsee, Yang, Li, and Shen (2009) articles, it discusses two different type of views. The first one being the absolute view. They define it as assuming absolute wealth and consumption levels are important in determine happiness. For this paper, we will only be looking at the consumption aspect of the happiness. The second one being the relative view. T...


... middle of paper ...


...ad a decrease in consumption to standard of living satisfaction. But when look at closer, the researchers said a possible reason behind this was that the people became worried and dissatisfied if their consumption rise for a give level of incoming and wealth. Which mean that consumption exceed income, cause a net loss in wealth causing the dissatisfaction.
Discussion
Both of these example demonstrate the effects of consumption in a long run scenario. Both give the point that consumption does have an effect on happiness. The difference again lies in how much consumption increases over time. While the lottery winner have a very sharp increase and steady decrease, the country data shows more a steady increase. The later be the more realistic picture, implying that everyone doesn’t win the lottery. The evidence from the relative vs absolute also supports this notion.


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