Joyce E. Byrd
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The skill of writing is to create a context in which other people can think.
- Edwin Schlossberg



Everybody Wants to be a Millionaire…Now!

By Joyce E. Byrd

“GET RICH QUICK.” The cliché permeates the air these days. Prime time television, the new morality of America, has popularized this most recent pervasive trend.

Why does everyone want this instant fame and fortune? Let's face it, this generation has enjoyed unparalleled prosperity and peace in this modern age. Jobs are plentiful, the national economy is strong, and life is generally good for most Americans. Owning a home with two SUVs in the garage, let alone the proverbial chicken in every pot, is commonplace.

Day traders and stocks have jarred the stock market from an investment platform to an arena of speculative trading. Stock prices are more or less a popularity contest. An organization's stock price no longer echoes its market value or earnings potential, but instead reflects the glamour of a runaway bandwagon.

So, now our expectations are greater. “Gee, all my basic needs are met … food, shelter, clothing … I have a 401k plan for retirement, a college fund for the kids' education, a house, an SUV, a luxury sedan, a sports car for fun, a 50% annual return on my investments … what more could I want? Hmmm…what if I didn't have to work for it? That's it! Let's become a millionaire overnight!”

And so, “Who Wants to Be A Millionaire”, “Twenty-One”, “Greed”, and the latest FOX debacle, “Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire”, have been offered up to quench our thirst for dollars.

Now, don't get me wrong. I think millionaires are fine people, and I wouldn't object if a million dollars landed in my lap. But, I think our level of expectation today is much greater than our forefathers. We must seriously ponder if we, and more importantly our children, are prepared for the inevitable economic downturn.

Copyright © 2000, Joyce E. Byrd.  All rights reserved.

Copyright © 2000-2007, Joyce E. Byrd.  All rights reserved.