How to Not Spend Money

Suppose you’re rich, but you’re the kind of rich person who reads Peter Singer; you believe that one person is morally entitled to consume only so much, regardless of how much money they have. Good for you! How should you go about restraining your consumption? Should you look through your budget for expenses that seem particularly wasteful and eliminate those? I say no. The thing to do is simply to give away to charity whatever money you have in excess of what, by your lights, is a justifiable amount to spend on yourself, and then buy whatever bundle of goods makes you happiest subject to the constraint that you have only that amount to spend, just like a person who actually had that amount of money all along would do. If you just look for extravagances to cut, you’re likely to end up spending the savings on something else, and if you don’t you will probably have ended up buying the “wrong” bundle of goods and services.

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