If you are the kind of person who is inclined to seize the current benefit, you will do best if you can find a way to link these immediate rewards to a superior payoff in the future. Young people, uneducated people, and those with lower IQs and problems with cognition or self-control find it hardest to make this connection. Those same peo ple are also more likely to have problems with obesity, gambling, impulse control, and even violence. These correlations don't philosophically prove that their impatient choices are incorrect (maybe the gamblers are the wise ones and the rest of us are fools for missing out on their risky delights), but they do lend support to the idea that these individuals are making a mistake.
we can think of the universe as a block of four-dimensional space-time. We would not discount human well-being for temporal distance per se any more than we would discount well-being for spatial location per se.
For all her failings, Ayn Rand is the one writer who has best understood the importance of production to moral theory-a point she expressed enthusiastically and at great length, albeit with numerous unfortunate caricatures. It is the work of capital, labor, and natural resources, driven by the creative individual mind, which undergird the achievements of our civilization. Whether or not you agree with all of Rand's political views, she is correct in her stance that we must not take the existence of wealth for granted.
New ideas are the product of human reason; it was Aristotle who defined man as the rational animal. A preoccupation with pursuing growth-or some modified version of the growth ideal-therefore means a preoccupation with ideas, a preoccupation with cultivating human reason, and a preoccupation with the notion that man should realize, perfect, and extend his nature as a generator of powerful ideas that can change the world
If we want to continue on our trends of growth, and the overwhelmingly positive outcomes for societies that come with it, every individual must become more concerned with the welfare of those around us.
Thus even a constant level of reported happiness implies growth in real happiness over time, because the word “happy" takes on ever more ambitious meanings as society accumulates more wealth and richer experiences