The Triangle of Power, Money, And Fame

Posted by Mark Hedengren on

I've noticed that all jobs offer varying amounts of power, money, and fame.  The triangle works like this: any government job is high in power but low in money and fame. Any business job is high in money but low in power and fame. Any art job is high in fame but low in power and money.

Now, of course, there are different mixes of jobs, particularly in film. Corporate videos/commercials are high in money but low in power and fame. However, feature films are high in fame but low in power and money. I hear you say "What!? Feature films make money." They do but they take so much time and the money has to be split so many ways that each person involved doesn't make as much as you would think. To quote director Kevin Smith, "I don't make feature films for the money. They take too much time." It wouldn't surprise me if even Michael Bay has a significant amount of his income come from commercials.  But even a money-losing feature film is worth a lot of press notice, and consequently, fame.

This is not to say that people who succeed highly in one of these fields do not try to leverage their money, power, or fame into another field. For example, Bill Clinton and George Bush leveraged their presidency into tens of millions of dollars after they left office. Or, conversely, the Kennedy family used their money to make John, Robert, and Ted some of the most powerful people in the world. Jessica Simpson used her fame to make money with her clothing line.

Another observation is that once people achieve a certain amount of money, power, or fame, they often become motivated by one of the two they didn’t achieve already. After all, to quote NFL quarterback, Steve Young, "After you've bought a house and a car there really isn't much left to buy." Steve Jobs was motivated by fame after making his millions. Bill Gates was motivated by power. That's why Steve Jobs went into art with Pixar, and Bill Gates started the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which is kind of a quasi-government UN world health organization.

I want to point out that the triangle of power, money, and fame shows how useless all of those things are. You notice that all of them don’t supply the one thing people need, which is love. You can't leverage money, power, or fame to get love. Some people who have tried are Michael Jackson, George Eastman (founder of Kodak), or basically any dictator in the world. Those people were fooled into thinking that people loved them because they were famous, powerful, or rich, but it was a lie. Love only results from caring for and loving others; giving of yourself, not money, fame, and power. People will love and care for you if you love and care for them. To quote the Beatles, "The love you take is equal to the love you make.”

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