What comes to mind at the moment is a book I’ve read about 10 years ago, by a Canadian philosopher by the name of Mark Kingwell, and the title of the book was “Better Living: In Search Of Happiness From Plato To Prozac”. He picked the words better living from the Westinghouse, washing machine company or refrigerator company of the 1950s and 60s, and their basic slogan was “better living through electricity”, I think, or else it was “better living through chemistry”, I’m not sure. But the promise was that modern appliances: washing machines and refrigerators, would allow the modern, at that time in the 50s and 60s household, live better.
Now, we’ve had now 30 years of living better to the point where… the point that he made was that the basic purpose of commercial marketing was to make people dissatisfied with their lives, so that they would buy the next thing that would probably satisfy them, and now we have, you know, really fancy, $100,000 cars that do everything but fly, and are really rolling living rooms on wheels. Do we need those? Probably not.