Capitalism and Happiness Half a World Away

I’m republishing this video from 2009 from our In Search of Shangrila journey. Public discourse about economics, and Capitalism in particular, is distorted by a lack of depth about just what constitutes both. By removing politics, and expanding the conversation to include the people who do the real work of the World’s economic production, we expand our understanding of just how much we share.

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The Wall Street Banker creates wealth with Ones and Zeros on a computer, the vendor at this market in Kampong Chong, Cambodia, creates wealth with sweat and skill. Both seek the same thing, a better life for themselves and their families. Is one superior? Who is happier? Is the pursuit of happiness worthy of being included, and measured, in the world of economics? After traveling 43,000 plus miles around the World at 12 miles per hour on a bicycle, I think it is a worthy goal. Maybe we might just find the vendor is Kampong Chong is just as fulfilled, happy, as the Wall Street Banker. If so how would that change our economic policies?

What do you think?

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