Re: FUM was Re: Ellison on Loserhood

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From: Jeff Bone (
Date: Wed Aug 16 2000 - 12:24:19 PDT

Ka-Ping Yee wrote:

> On Tue, 15 Aug 2000, Jeff Bone wrote:
> >
> > One other way of putting it: while it's pretty much an obvious truth
> > on some level that "there's more to life than money," isn't it also
> > pretty much indisputable that having lots of money (once you've got it)
> > should get you more of that "more?"
> Far from "indisputable", this is your completely invalid assumption.
> Money alone will not buy you friendship, respect, integrity, experience,
> devotion, or love. It will not make you smarter, wiser, more creative,
> or more skilled. It will not get you a family. Many people consider all
> of these things, and more, essential to the pursuit of happiness.

It's indisputable. :-)

Let's debug those thoughts. BTW, I'm not expounding a personal philosophy,
here, I'm just pointing some stuff out, 'k? Buy friends? Try buying a round
at a bar sometime. You'll discover you've got friends you didn't even know.
;-) Respect? You don't have to buy respect, if you've got tons of money
some people will just *give* it to you even if you're a complete
pri^H^H^HLarry Ellison. Integrity? Well, probably not, you've got to do
that one for yourself. Experience? One thing money can *certainly* buy is
experience: the aforementioned examples (MiG, Mir, 1am cross-country
sandwich run, etc.) are all experiences. Worthwhile ones? Well, that's
personal. Devotion, love? I guess that depends on who you want to receive
that from, but having FUM probably eliminates certain stressors in
relationships (sure, and creates others.) For a more crass definition of
love, dollars can certainly get you that in various establishments outside of
Las Vegas, as well as other places. And then, there're always the
gold-diggers... ;-)

Money *will* make you smarter --- or at least more educated --- if you've got
the financial and time bandwidth to just mess around in school studying
whatever you like. It won't make you wiser in itself, but if you build your
own fortune you're likely going to acquire some wisdom along the way,
particularly unique wisdom at that. More creative? There's all kinds of
creativity; I suspect that novel creativity's a requirement to building your
own fortune, so again I imagine it goes with the territory. More skilled?
Unlimited buckage can buy a lot of scuba, private pilot, ski, tennis,
mountain climbing, welding, jitterbug, cooking, or whatever classes. It
won't get you a family? I imagine that a lonely billionaire looking for a
family could probably fill that bill lickety-split bell taquito; just takes
one trip to the strip club to meet the right empoverished single mother of

Many people consider all of these things, and more, essential to the pursuit
of happiness? Well, okay, fine. Among your list, I can't find a single
thing aside from integrity for which money doesn't in some way enhance one's
prospects. At the end of the day, money may not be able to buy happiness per
se, but it sure seems to grease the skids. More money == more options, more
options -> better odds of being able to do all the things that make one

As for integrity, I'm not sure that it's not a negative survival trait for
billionaires. Looking at the current crop, I'd say they've got some real
creative definitions of "integrity." Can they sleep at night? You bet.
Money can buy a lot of Xanax. :-)

> > Fuck-you money (FUM) is whatever amount of money it takes to make an
> > individual pretty much able to do whatever they want, whenever they
> > want, even when that conflicts with what other people want, fuck you
> > very much. ;-)
> This kind of attitude clearly isn't going to make a lot of friends fast.

Hey, I didn't invent FUM, I'm just talking about it. Don't confuse argument
with attitude. I'm only taking a position, here, not particularly talking
about my own views.

> > (I.e., Larry Ellison lands at SFO whenever he damn well pleases, and
> > pays the after-curfew landing fine.)
> Right, and how well-loved is he?

The pertinent question isn't that, it's "how happy is he?" Again, I don't
see him bitching about how bad it sucks to be a billionaire. ;-)

> -- ?!ng

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