A philosophy webcomic about the inevitable anguish of living a brief life in an absurd world. Also Jokes

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Thales and the Olive Presses

Thales: "I follow a higher cause, the cause of philosophy. I seek knowledge, not riches. "
Greek Business Man: "You only say that because you can't get rich."
Thales: "Not true, i could do it if i wanted."

Business Man: "Prove it."
Thales: "I will!"
Business Man: "Fine!"
Thales: "Fine!"

Thales, later on: "Yes...the olive presses aren't being used now, so I'll buy them all up cheaply..."

Thales: "Yes, you see, now that the harvest is good you all have to pay! I told you i could become rich if i wanted!"

Thales: "When the harvest comes, i will own them all, and i can charge exorbitant prices for their use..."

Thales: "So you see, I've proven that i could earn money i wanted, but i don't want to: i choose the path of true happiness."

Business Man: "You just spent a year of your life doing something you hate just to prove you are smarter than everyone else. That's the philosopher's “good life”?"

Thales: "...yes."
"We philosophers are not interested in worldly goods. What is gold and riches compared to the thrill of spite?"

According to the story, Thales didn't pursue wealth and riches, being a philosopher and all who was only interested in knowledge. People challenged him saying that he only did this because he couldn't become rich, as that was what all men really wanted. To prove them wrong and show that a philosopher could easily become rich if they wanted, he used his intelligence in business to become wealthy in the next year. He did this by buying up all the olive presses in the off season, creating a sort of monopoly situation, and charging higher prices when harvest came in (which was particularly good, something he was also possibly able to predict due to his knowledge of weather). Sort of a funny story in a lot of ways, for one, you have to already be pretty rich to be able to buy up every single olive press to create a monopoly. And two, it seems unlikely that only a great wise philosopher is smart enough to think up the idea of "if I have a monopoly on something that everyone needs I can become rich by ripping them off and charging too much", and three if he was really interesting in philosophy he probably should have just spent the year working on philosophy, rather than proving how smart he was by coming up with olive schemes. But maybe that's just me.

According to the story, Thales didn't pursue wealth and riches, being a philosopher and all who was only interested in knowledge. People challenged him saying that he only did this because he couldn't become rich, as that was what all men really wanted. To prove them wrong and show that a philosopher could easily become rich if they wanted, he used his intelligence in business to become wealthy in the next year. He did this by buying up all the olive presses in the off season, creating a sort of monopoly situation, and charging higher prices when harvest came in (which was particularly good, something he was also possibly able to predict due to his knowledge of weather). Sort of a funny story in a lot of ways, for one, you have to already be pretty rich to be able to buy up every single olive press to create a monopoly. And two, it seems unlikely that only a great wise philosopher is smart enough to think up the idea of "if I have a monopoly on something that everyone needs I can become rich by ripping them off and charging too much", and three if he was really interesting in philosophy he probably should have just spent the year working on philosophy, rather than proving how smart he was by coming up with olive schemes. But maybe that's just me.

Philosophers in this comic: Thales
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