Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Money and Life

I read a comment from one of the readers of Yomiuri Shimbun, a major newspaper in Japan, and it caught my eye:

Yomiuri shimbun, 09/12/2009

A letter from a mother in her 40s says,

"I have two children, one is an elementary school student, the other a junior high school student. The older one is not good at plugging at study, but quick in understanding, and began to go to cram school and the grades are going up.

We need more money in education for my children. My husband's income was always low and due to recent recession, it is even lower. Less overwork and work on holiday made him stay longer at home. My husband is a good man and kind to our children, but his income is low!

I am working part-time and have a lot to do for children, but I am so nervous that our low income may be going to give them few accesses to good opportunities. Looking at his face, I feel hatred for him. I am worried that our conjugal life may be broken and may do our children harm. First of all, I feel so sad that I cannot give my husband a smile."
(Translated by Taro)

During the economic stagnation, people feel so nervous and disappointed at their future life. "Money can't buy happiness", some people say, but nobody disagrees that money is very important for life. What is really needed for good life? Money! Probably, but probably not at the same time.

Money can buy good education and good access to good career and good life. That's why many students go to the US to get MA or PhD at higher-ranked university. However, they know that school may not guarantee happy life with good partner and children. They feel after graduation they may be unemployed or poor or alone all their life.

Some economists may say that economics gives a good hint on what and how to do for living a good life, but I don't know it clearly. I know while many people are seeking for better and happier life, very few people really know what and how to do for it.

Which is better for you in your life, a poor life with warm-hearted partner or a rich life with a cold-blooded partner? As Milton Friedman says, "free to choose!". The point is what you need most all your life. If you need a stable life, you should choose to work for government, and if you need an unstable but, if you are lucky and good at business, a rich life, you should choose to become a business entrepreneur.

If you think happiness is to put up with any hardship both for your good life and for your children's life, you should choose a partner who agrees with you. If you think happiness is not to be miserable or not to be poor, you should check your partner's bank account and payroll before choosing him or her as a lifelong partner. Anyway, free to choose, right!?

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