November 9th, 2016
Contributing writer for Wake Up World
“You work in a job you hate, to buy stuff that you don’t need, to impress people that you don’t like.” ~ Fight Club
We might think we are “getting a steal” with the latest clearance sale, but rarely do we consider the true cost of consumerism — in ecological, human and economic terms. When we consistently buy cheap, mass produced, flimsy products made in places like China, we’re investing in a shoddy future all around. Everyone loses — workers, our local economies and the environment.
“Landfills swell with cheap discarded products that fail early and cannot be repaired. Products are made psychologically obsolete long before they actually wear out. A generation is growing up without knowing what quality goods are. Friendship, family ties and personal autonomy are only promoted as a vehicle for gift giving and the rationale for the selection of communication services and personal acquisition. Everything becomes mediated through the spending of money on goods and services. Human beings who cannot spend become worthless.” [source]
Unfortunately, we’ve been conditioned as a culture to immediately go for the “cheapo bargain” — not realizing we end up paying more in the end because we have to replace shoddy merchandise — which also produces mountains of toxic waste (especially with electronics). Don’t forget, many of our “must-have’s” are also produced by people in conditions close to slave labor.
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