How Greed Can Be A Good Thing

Rambo !

Greed.  Avarice.  You want it all.  Every one at some point wants: more.  I do, I feel this way all the time.  I want this electronic device or a kick-butt crib for our coming attraction due in the fall.  We especially want more:  money

[Wanting more money is like wanting more time.  The lack of money (for those of us above the poverty level) isn’t the issue, just like the lack of time.  The deeper issue is what we do with the money or time we have right now.  But that is an article for another day.]

I Want It All

I conducted an experiment:  I watched an 1/2 hour and hour of prime-time television and wrote down what was advertised during the commercials.  (Yes, watch t.v., do it for science!)  I looked up and calculated how much it would cost to purchase all of the items advertised.  The prices were relative to where I live, but check this out:

1/2 hour of television equals to 8 minutes of commercials.  Total price of advertised products= $42, 271.22

An hour of television equals about 18 minutes of commercials.  Total price of advertised products= $34, 245.24

That is wild, esp. the difference in price between an hour and 1/2 hour of t.v., I would have thought it would be the other way around.

Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing quote “bad” about advertising products to the masses.  If a person created something, they have every right to market it.  But I noticed as I watched that I wanted more and more.  (Well, except for the Old Navy dresses, but I liked the commercial, esp. when the guy gave the animated cat to the little girl.  Nice touch).

You may find yourself in the same predicament of wanting.  Is it a feeling of lack that we try and fill?  A sense of jealousy when someone else has something newer/better/trendier than we do?

Greed touches on something inside all of us, no matter our income, environment, upbringing, whatever.  We. Want. More.

Greed for Good

So I’ve begun thinking, how can greed turn into something good?  How can we be greedy and help somebody in the process?  Is that even possible?  Can I help make the world better while being better and purchase The Six Million Dollar Man The Complete Series on DVD?

We can focus our greed on other things besides “stuff”.  We can be greedy for hope and get all the hope we can.  We can be down right selfish and want more love because loved people love people.

We can want people worldwide to have access to safe, clean water.  I want to be consumed with breaking free of my internal limitations to help people do the same so we can all help meet a need.  I’m very greedy about everyone being free, internally and externally.

Dear greed, if you are going to be with us, especially in our culture, we are going to put you to good use.

What do you think?  How can you use greed for good?

[This article is loosely based on the concept of Larfleeze, the wielder of the Orange Light of Greed, created by Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver.  This is Part Two in a seven issued limited series called “Weaponized Emotions”] [photo by AndrewHA]


  • This is not a perfect parallel, but I think the ultimate “greed for good” act just may be getting as much money as you to give it away to needy people. And I mean, truly needy: those who, but for your giving, may be left destitute and in worse off shape. Obviously, make sure your house is in order first, so that you have the resources (not just financial) to give…giving is totally awesome and highly recommended. 🙂

  • I hear you Silvia, giving is very rewarding. I’ve found in my own life, it is hard to give away money to help someone, so maybe that is the very thing I must do. Be greedy for good to fight past that resistance to help someone else. Thanks for the comment!

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