It’s more than likely that human nature provides the invisible force, “the invisible hand” behind all economic and social activity that we observe during our short and limited lifetimes.
It’s no coincidence that Adam Smith wrote the “Wealth of Nations” exactly in time with the beginning of the Anthropocene era. A multiplier, a technology, changed and thus inverted the way we perceive ourselves as a species. Over a short time, instinct and generational memory have blurred together to form the false assumption and delusion that the invisible hand of economic activity will take care of itself by leading humanity towards a desirable, optimal, and sustainable outcome.
Sequentially, think about which of these chronologies makes more logical sense;
- Wants, Needs, Multipliers, Inventory
- Inventory, Multipliers, Needs, Wants
- needs – basic life support
- wants – human expectation and desire, the definition of wealth
- inventory – a measurement of the sum of all the smallest denominators of what exists and is available in the physical world within an accessible geography be it; a plant seed, a unit of energy, labor time, an individual atom of an element, or anything potentially available for use
- multiplier – a tool, an efficiency, a substitution, technology, technological artifact, an optimized arrangement, or an ephemeralization
What you want, as a human being and greater society, may be very different from what you need and what can be sustained.