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Confronting Capitalism by Philip Kotler

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FOURTEEN

CREATING HAPPINESS AS WELL AS GOODS

The unexamined life is not worth living.

—SOCRATES

Suppose an economy manages to produce a high and steady rate of GDP growth. This sounds like an ideal economy. It would mean that per capita productivity is rising and there are potentially more goods and services for the citizens. But would citizens necessarily be happier? Would citizens attain a higher level of well-being?

French economist Daniel Cohen of Dauphine University raises the question: “Why is it getting harder to be happy, despite developed countries’ increasing wealth? Why doesn’t money make us happy?” He points out that French citizens are one-third less happy today than in 1950, although their income is twice as high. He answers his ...

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