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In this quote, Jonathan Clements is ranking the different ways that money can be used or spent. He argues that most importantly, money provides “time and autonomy” – it allows one to replace earning income with leisure time, and gives independence over one’s schedule and lifestyle choices. Secondly, money can be spent on valuable “experiences” like travel or entertainment.
But least importantly, money is often wasted buying excessive “stuff”, which Clements says tends to not ultimately make people any happier in the long run. The key message is that using money to gain more free time and freedom of choice brings greater benefits to well-being than the temporary satisfaction of acquiring possessions.