Auros (auros) wrote,

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Money not spent on cheap plastic junk doesn't disappear into a vacuum.

Forum this morning was an interview with a woman who just published a book about trying to buy less stuff. Some of the conversation was sort of loopy-idealist stuff, but there were also a lot of good points... However, there was some guy who called in (at about 16:30 in the downloadable MP3) to make the argument that OMG if people stop buying the economy will collapse! and to accuse those who think that maybe we're overconsuming a bit of expressing "self-righteous indignation".

OK, yes, it's theoretically possible for a society to try to save too much (especially if the ways they try to save it do not allow their savings to get put to good use -- to get passed along as credit to those making valuable investments), but you'd have to be delusional to think we live in that society! My semi-apoplectic response is at 43:20.

Points I didn't get a chance to hit: It's possible for the economy to grow through producing better, more valuable stuff, rather than just more stuff. And it's possible for the economy to grow through efficiency and productivity (using the same amount of raw materials and labor to produce more or better stuff).

People who make profoundly stupid economic arguments that parrot Bush/corporatist propaganda (in the face of terrorism and war, it's critical that Americans not stop shopping!) irritate me. If this means I'm expressing "self-righteous indignation," fine. :-P

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