: For one thing, inflation. For another, economic growth, as an absolute factor, but there are more poor people than ever before as well now.
I think we'd need numbers for that wouldnt we? Lets look at either absolutes (standards of 'poor') or relative figures (% of those with over a million in 'real terms' compared with 50 yrs ago, Avg income in real terms per working person compared with over 50yrs ago, avg bundle of goods purchasable now etc etc etc)
: Why should they though? And who is to judge a superior ability? isn't approbrium and teh ability itself its own reward - what reward should tehre be for being a nice guy?
You get more friends (and more 'lets be friends' rejection from ladies if that myth is true!)
: The myth of the self-made man assigns the exceptional to the typical.
Thats partly why they are so interesting - even schools of 'entreprenuership' don't produce these people, it doesnt seem something one can train for.
: But he hasn't - capitalism rewards ownership of property above all else, skill and achievement is irrelevent...
I dont think thats the case. Observe that fellow who invented the Dyson vacuum cleaner. He didnt own anything and is now richer than the great majority of landlords. Capitalism rewards no one, people simply exchange things with eachother and the one whom is in much demand for what he offers gets more - whether it be renting apartments, selling vacuums or yes, even drugs.
: I have a first class honours degree, a Masters with distinction, I'd hardly call myself a failure - better response?
Well done RD! I thought you'd be worthy of a distinction! Remember I joked that you might end up as a clerk in an insurance office if you didnt watch it? Well that was my point - place your MA against the above example of 'one whom is in much demand' and it becomes easier to understand ones own condition - even if doing so is one of those 'harsh realities'. Youre still a success my the measure of the MA though, it isnt necessary to accept other people's standards of something so nebulous as 'success'. If your happy and you know it clap your hands etc! Thats the guide.