People are happier if our work is interesting and satisfying. But we like to make money, too (for obvious reasons), which means there has to be a demand for our services (just ask most artists).
Here are some interesting data, with two comments: 1) salary data is median, not mean or ranges (average salaries and salary ranges can be quite different than the median), and 2) take projections with a grain of salt (humans are terrible at predicting the future).
Two final comments.
- It’s not hard to understand why health care is so expensive in the U.S. when looking at these numbers. Physicians are a protected lot. Overly restrictive U.S. residency requirements limit the supply of surgeons and other doctors, with the intended effect of keeping salaries high (as well as our costs, of course). (Coincidentally, I have an appointment with a surgeon tomorrow morning.)
- What’s with the term “political scientist”? Seriously, is there anything remotely scientific about a politician?