Chapter 1 - Pages 8 & 9
Historically, where the personal valuation had gone awry, however, was in terms of the origin of one's individual wealth. The mere possession of money had come to supersede the means of accumulating it. In the early twenty-first century, any individual could accumulate wealth with no regard to the impact one made on other individuals or society. The worst aspect of that system, however, is that one could accumulate wealth at the expense of others. This was a flawed model, as the most aggressive people and organizations, that seemingly prioritized wealth and power, ended up accumulating a disproportionate amount of both and subsequently started persecuting and taking an authoritative position in relation to those who had less. This ultimately led to the “Occupy Movement” in 2011 and 2012.
America fortunately came to realize that accumulation of wealth at the expense of others is not wealth that should be judged as valuable or honorable. Through the “New Freedom Initiative” (NFI), wealth that was accumulated without adding value to individuals or society, started to become less respected or desired, and per my initial point regarding human judgment, “unsavory money” actually became judged as negative by a great majority of Americans. Just as an easy example, banks in America came to refuse drug money out right by 2015.
The effect of this unsavory label was to encourage individual and corporate wealth-building as a result of benefiting a wider group of society. It would also serve to keep those who had amassed their fortunes in a less than honorable manner from having personal influence or access to broader political, business or social institutions. No one ever argued that any individual could not make money in America any way they liked. What came to pass, however, was that the holding of that money did not automatically include power and influence along with it.
By the mid-2030s, ethics have since returned and are now a key component to wealth-building such that the amount of money that one accumulates is reasonably proportionate to the contribution one makes throughout that process.
In today’s world, those individuals that provide the greatest benefit to society receive the greatest return in terms of money, property, power and authority. As a result, most people can claim a higher level of happiness and stability in 2043 than they ever could in 2013. This claim to happiness extends well beyond American borders into parts of the world where in 2013 even having a claim on clean water was rare. The world genuinely has improved significantly as a result of changed attitudes toward money.