Too Much: Three First World Problems (Art Carden, Mar. 21st, 2024, AIER)

Magnificently, free markets that have given us these “problems” also give us solutions. Capitalism comes to the rescue. Do you have a weight problem? Gyms cater to people of all budgets and with all sorts of fitness goals. There are cheap gyms like Planet Fitness (I’ve been a member for about seven years and honestly don’t use my membership that well) and more expensive gyms that are almost country clubs. Do you have too much stuff? There is a burgeoning market for professional organizers who will help you keep it all organized (this episode of EconTalk with Adam Minter, author of Secondhand, is fascinating). Too busy? We can’t all hire a personal assistant, but there is a similar market for companies that help people manage their projects and calendars (I’m a member of Asian Efficiency and was on their podcast in 2022).

Where our ancestors lived lives that were solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short, the twenty-first century has us overwhelmed with connections, opportunities, and experiences.