What is “Wealth”…and where does it come from?
Whether you’re in favor of or opposed to the recent Federal Government program to save our economy, you must admit that it brings up some interesting issues about money and how it’s created. The government, which is in debt already, suddenly came up with hundreds of billions of dollars, seemingly out of the blue! Many people are mystified right now. They’re asking, “Where in the world did this money come from?”
Was it just a matter of pushing a button on the printing presses, or did they go out and borrow it from a rich uncle who had that much money stashed away somewhere?
If we had it all along, why wasn’t it spent on other things we’ve needed all along? Things like
- health care???
- crime prevention???
Anyone ever heard of these? These have been problems for a long time, but supposedly we couldn’t afford to do anything about them.
If wealth were truly tangible, like pieces of gold, we couldn’t just make it appear. But wealth is really just a concept – an idea that we all share. We agree to make money worth something. When people think of money in this way, it’s relatively easy to come up the funds that are needed.
When there are severe shortages of something – like food to eat, or steel to make cars, or wood to build houses, or people to build them – it’s fairly easy to understand the problem. But look around right now – there are cars sitting in dealers’ lots, there’s lumber collecting dust at Lowe’s, there’s plenty of food, and there are a lot of people looking for work to do. There seems to be plenty of wealth.
It wasn’t long ago that the in the stock market was booming, but now stocks are worth only half that amount. Where did that money come from, and where did it go? There’s no real difference in the amount of food, energy, or labor. Isn’t that what “wealth” is based on? The only difference seems to be a difference in numbers written down in books (or stored in computers). People may say that this is oversimplification, but to me it just seems like common sense.
I’m not an economist, and I’m definitely not taking sides in the political debate. I’m just throwing this out there to illustrate a point.
If people believe that there is a limit to the wealth in the world, they may not see how they can acquire more. “If there are only so many gold coins out there, how can I get more in my pocket unless I somehow take them from other people? Doesn’t someone else have to become poor if I become wealthy?”
The truth is that there is an unlimited supply of wealth in the universe – it is being created every day.
Our ability to acquire wealth does not depend on how much someone else has, it depends on our thoughts and feelings about it. There is no cosmic rule that says we can’t all be wealthy. In fact, if we followed the Natural Laws of the Universe, we would all be wealthy right now.
You have the same ability to create wealth at any time you choose.