Monday, January 12, 2009

Government expects Consumers to save the day

Here's good advice from Michelle Singletary, a columnist for The Washington Post: "Make 2009 the year you stop defining yourself as a consumer." Here's a tidbit of her article, but I encourage you to click here to read the full text.
"We Americans are so used to being referred to as 'consumers' that we comfortably fall into that role and do so conspicuously," Krohn, a retired Navy submariner living in Arkansas, wrote me.

This recession has proved that things have to change, and still the message from many of our leaders continues to be that consumerism - consumers - will save the day. To be a consumer is equivalent to being a good American.

I remember well after 9/11 when people were ready to sacrifice on behalf of our national interests, and President Bush told us the best thing we could do for our country was to keep shopping. Such a waste of opportunity. Finally, in this economic crisis, people are rethinking unchecked capitalism. We have to rebuild our society so that we are not based on "growth at all costs" (including overwork, massive debt, and environmental degradation), but on sustainable production. We can produce local food, local energy, and local economies that encourage interdependence and sustainability. What have you produced lately?

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