[Review] What Money Can’t Buy

What Money Can’t Buy is the second non-novel book I read in this year and honestly, I started growing interest in this genre more and more according to the knowledge and insights included in it. Should novels show me the world in which people should/ should not live in, this genre of book shows me the world people are living in at the moment. And sometimes, I realize, we need a break from all those imagined worlds and have a closer look at the real situation happening around us and be well aware of it.

This book discusses a series of issues and activities which are evidence for a through yet complicated debate between market and non-market norms. The question, which is the title itself, is raised through the book many times and receives different answers based on each particular case, sometimes it does not even get a clear enough answer since it might need another book to do so. Even though, the author did successfully pointed out the unconvincing and severe aftermaths of a world in which market rules everything. Not only will it raise and spread the unfairness and corruption in every aspect of life but also gradually crowd out all the non-market norms and turned our society in a materialistic, market-driven one. I will not talk about the bad effect on people living in such society since it is more or less certain to everyone and partly because it would be better if you read the book and find them yourself. Even though I know that the world is shifting towards the market side recently, I was still alarmed and shocked at some examples showing to what extent people can do for money and how they feel totally okay about that. The economists who supporting the market-driven society continuously talking about the win-win situation and how it was a mutual benefit all the time without admitting that there is always a downside of those.

From my viewpoint, there is a number of certain things that cannot be bought with money, no matter how much there is. If it happens, the original value of the items will either be tarnished or lose its entire value. While reading the book, I had some thought on what I want to do if I have money since it seems like many rich people nowadays had trouble with how to perceive the power of money and how to spend it the right way. Then I realized that you don’t have to be rich to worry about that but totally can as long as you have money to buy something or things that others interested in buying. It is always a hard decision, I acknowledged, and that’s why until the last page of the book, the author still end it with the question once again, implying that we always need to ask ourselves that question to make the right decision.


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