Cass R. Sunstein through this article intended to shed more light about happiness as a process and how it is perceived in various setting. The argumentative article has highlighted the research undertaken by two scientists that include Norton and Dunn thus meeting the required expectation in an argumentative article. Sunstein beings the article by offering three different options that one would consider in the case of an unexpected windfall of $25000. The first alternative offered is buying a new car, secondly, renovating your home and lastly having a dream vacation with the family (Hurlburt 9). It is on this basis that the author presents the ideas about the process of happiness and the manner in which it is perceived. This essay offers a critique of the article by first presenting the principles that the author has covered in a summary and then critiquing the essay by Sunstein.
Sunstein presents a dilemma in the process of achieving happiness based on the three alternatives offered at the beginning of the essay. Each alternative is weightier in its context and would give pleasure and happiness if achieved independently. The three alternatives form the core principles of happiness according to Sunstein. The argument is further emphasized through the work of Dunn and Norton who have presented counterintuitive finds that that further ignites a sense of recognition. Dunn and Norton argue by one question that they believe should guide the manner in which one would spend their money: "what makes you happy?" in answering this question, they have offered five different principles. Nonetheless, their preference is on experience rather than commodities (Hurlburt 19). It is in this context that they express the concern that a trip to Paris for two weeks may be pretty short, but it may be so terrific that you would live to cherish it for a lifetime. Such a novel experience offers valuable memories that endure compared to having a nice car or a posh house (Hurlburt 13). The impact of owning a nice car and a posh house diminish after a while. Hence there would be no more pleasure derived from it.
Reading through this essay Yes Money Can Make You Happy" by Sunstein, one would be left with a set of questions to answer. The essay is entirely based on the principles presented by Dunn and Norton. In support of the various arguments, one would be interested in the factual data that was considered to arrive at the various findings presented in the argument. On this basis, it would be possible to consider the suitability of the various sampling techniques used in conducting the research. Also, by looking at the data, it would enhance the reliability of the findings as well as their validity. The essay as it is has only focused on the findings without pointing out any consideration that would support the views presented. The generalizability of the findings is, therefore, questionable. Additionally, the author of the essay has only focused on the views presented in one particular research. Such an approach in certain occasions results into a substandard argument as some issues that could have been addressed by other scholars on the same topic are left out. It, therefore, leaves the essay with a one-sided argument that fails to integrate different views that would build on the essay and emphasize the findings of Dunn and Norton.
Similarly, the essay focuses only on one side of the question and supports the perception that money is the only avenue to happiness. It is, therefore, worth questioning what happens to those without money. The essay is thus biased, and any reader would be interested in finding out whether those without financial capacity are saddened for eternity. However, this is not the case since even those who are poor and struggle with their basic needs acquire happiness on some issues that does not depend on money. However, little they could spend they still achieve novelty within themselves. This concept applies to both the perception held by Dunn and Norton and what is presented in the essay by Sunstein on questioning about the reliable measures of happiness (Hurlburt 16). The essay by Sunstein has fully relied on the concepts presented by Dunn and Norton without addressing this concern that would make the essay more convincing and practical.
To conclude, Sunsteins essay Yes Money Can Make You Happy," is interesting an argument of what to consider when one intends to spend his or her fortune. The main question that the essay believes should guide how you spend is to ask yourself what is it that would thrill you most if you are to spend money. Nonetheless, it must also be considered that not everyone has a fortune but still live to their satisfaction and achieve the happiness that they live to cherish for a life time. Similarly, it has to be taken into attention that you might as well have the fortune but fails to acquire happiness due to other external factors that the essay has not pointed out.
Behrens, Lawrence and Leonard J. Rosen, Writing and Reading Across the Curriculum, 13th Edition with 2016 MLA Updates. New York: Pearson Longman, 2016. ISBN: 13-978-0-13-458260-3.
Hacker, Diana and Nancy Sommers. A Writers Reference. 8th ed. with 2016 MLA Update. Boston: Bedford/St. Martins, 2016. ISBN: 978-1-319-08353-3.
Hurlburt, Martin. Yes, Money Can Make You Happy. Provo, Utah: Missions Publishing, 2001. Print.
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