Other studies have shown that toddlers feel happier giving treats than receiving them, says Music. “Then we have evidence that adolescents asked to do a good deed once a day become less depressed. We’ve evolved to be helpful and to do things without reward. Rewards don’t make anyone happy and something very fundamental is lost when we reward for certain behaviours. We all know it, but we’ve lost sight of it as we’re suckered into the consumer ethos, the deep insistence that we need that iPhone or that new kitchen to be happy – and we fall for it again and again. Those very powerful drivers of post-industrial capitalism and mass media are brilliant at triggering those needs and, after all, you can’t sell wellbeing.”
Two year olds are the most selfcentred beings on the planet. The idea that their natural altruism is converted by capitalism is something that only a child psychiatrist could believe.
Not someone who had, you know, ever actually met a human child.