In the sense that the first world is by definition a group of post-scarcity economies? That the drive toward further profit-accumulation is a result of capitalist superstructure convincing people that they are impoverished if they can't afford the new iPhone?
I agree. It's perfectly viable for current capitalist economies to switch completely to a socialist mode of production without impoverishing the people. Economic growth would collapse, but people are spoiled by the urge to have new electronic toils, bigger houses, etc.
If you look at happiness (orthodox / booj) economics, happiness tends to max around 18,000 GDP per capita before reaching diminishing returns. The United States is around 66,000 GDP per capita, Germany is 44-55k, even France is around 38k.
If the well being of the proletariat is all that matters, we can easily take a 50% drop in per capita GDP without impoverishing populations. The reduction in exploitation will likely result to an increase in gross national welfare and by making people happier, societies would be better off.
However, if you're talking about third world countries, or countries that are attempting to challenge the American-led world system, then maybe there's a point to wealth. Look at India, Vietnam, and China in their response to the COVID-19 crisis.
China was able to afford a draconian response to eradicate indigenous COVID-19 in China itself, saving lives and improving the economy, because it's relatively rich (about 4-6 years away from developed country status), and it still has a Marxist / Maoist system of social control, so the anti-vaxxers / anti-masker idiots could be promptly dumped into labor camps. Vietnam, in contrast, did not have the same wealth as China, so when Delta hit, its Marxist-Leninist system of social control broke down because they couldn't afford any further lockdowns.
And India is just succdem. They could neither produce the discipline intrinsic in Marxist Leninist systems, nor the wealth of high middle-income countries, so the initial lockdown spread COVID, people starved, etc etc etc. If, say, Vietnam had more money, they could have afforded the eradication that China was well-off enough to do so. If India had more money, they could have afforded to pay for the health and social services needed to deal with COVID in a liberal mannePost too long. Click here to view the full text.