The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms: greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind, and greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA.
what man calls civilization
always results in deserts
man is never on the square
he uses up the fat and greenery of the earth
each generation wastes a little more
of the future with greed and lust for riches
Don Marquis, "What the Ants Are Saying," stanza 5, Archy Does His Part, in The Lives and Times of Archy & Mehitabel (1950), p. 475.
Greed often finds more pleasure in taking from others than in giving to itself.
Simon May, English philosopher. The Pocket Philosopher: a handbook of Aphorisms (1999).
If you take away ideology, you are left with a case by case ethics which in practise ends up as me first, me only, and in rampant greed.
Richard Nelson, American playwright. From the Independent (UK) newspaper, 12th July 1989.
Enter stranger, but take heed
Of what awaits the sin of greed,
For those who take, but do not earn,
Must pay most dearly in their turn.
J. K. Rowling, 'Diagon Alley', Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (1997).
Mutual indulgence has already declined into selfish appetite; now, that appetite becomes aware of the incompatible and equally selfish appetites of other people. Indifference becomes mutual antagonism, imaged here by the antagonism between hoarding and squandering.
If money is, as it is often posited, the root of all evil, then where does that leave greed? Let's do the math: Greed takes up most of your time and most of your money, so therefore greed = time x money. And, as we all know, time = money. Ergo, greed = money x money. So, if money is the square root of all evil, then we are forced to conclude that greed is evil as well, perhaps even more so, in that it forced us to do math.
But when does the desire to simply possess something turn into unchecked greed? That's easy: when the things that you possess start possessing you.
Dale E. Basye and Bob Dob, in Rapacia: The Second Circle of Heck (2009), "Backword", p. 361.
Greed will always leave you dissatisfied because you'll never be able to get everything you desire. Greed never allows you to think you have enough; it always destroys you by making you strive ever harder for more.
Rabbi Benjamin Blech, American academic and writer. Taking Stock: A Spiritual Guide to Rising Above Life's Financial Ups and Downs (2003).
Marketers keep inventing desires, necessities for you and for me. I need this. I need that. I need. I need. It’s the need of a smoking fit. If you don’t smoke that cigarette now, you’ll die—when in reality you die because you succumb to the rage and rattle of the needy greed that keeps you busy needing more and more things. Is this the American Dream—the greedy need?"