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December 30, 2008

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Comments

Steve

Fantastic and touching piece to be read widely.

Keep your money local.

We can buy less things but spend more money in our local economies. Spend as little as you can with multinationals who send 85c of every dollar overseas.

The ultimate goal of the corporate powers is for every citizen of the world to be a global worker slaving for the lowest eurodollaryuan. So starve them out. And the best way we can stop this is to spend our money with local small businesses, manufacturers, and entrepreneurs.

Dale

Our spending has gone waaaaayyy down these last couple of years, basically because our income was cut and we realized we needed much less than we consumed. But the bi-monthly trip to the dump (excuse me - transfer station) tells me we still consume too much. Food packaging is a huge part of that. Cans, bottles, cardboard, styrofoam and plastic from fish and chicken, bags from fresh fruits and vegetables, cat food tins (from the cats), newspaper, magazines and cardboard...While most of this gets recycled, it's tough to think of the fuel consumed to repurpose it all: to truck cardboard off somewhere to be bailed up only to be shipped to China to be turned into drywall; to grind up a glass bottle to be mixed with roadsalt so it can eventually wash into the ditch and NOT turn back into another bottle. I don't have any answer, but every time I go grocery shopping I ask why all this packaging is necessary. The recent awareness of wasting petrochemicals to make plastic shopping bags is just the beginning. Oh, and the Stroheim mention makes me want to see the Blue Angel again. THAT movie is a downer, too.

Dale

Our spending has gone waaaaayyy down these last couple of years, basically because our income was cut and we realized we needed much less than we consumed. But the bi-monthly trip to the dump (excuse me - transfer station) tells me we still consume too much. Food packaging is a huge part of that. Cans, bottles, cardboard, styrofoam and plastic from fish and chicken, bags from fresh fruits and vegetables, cat food tins (from the cats), newspaper, magazines and cardboard...While most of this gets recycled, it's tough to think of the fuel consumed to repurpose it all: to truck cardboard off somewhere to be bailed up only to be shipped to China to be turned into drywall; to grind up a glass bottle to be mixed with roadsalt so it can eventually wash into the ditch and NOT turn back into another bottle. I don't have any answer, but every time I go grocery shopping I ask why all this packaging is necessary. The recent awareness of wasting petrochemicals to make plastic shopping bags is just the beginning. Oh, and the Stroheim mention makes me want to see the Blue Angel again. THAT movie is a downer, too.

K

What you discover when you take away the toys and shiny objects is two things. One, that the people around you, and your relationships to them, are your actual worth. The second is that the physical (natural) world has great intrinsic value. This fact has been heavily obscured by our disconnection from it due to our lifestyle. Most people now live in cities and suburbs, where the natural world has been beaten into submission. It is said, "something is boring as watching grass grow". Well, try it sometime. Growing grass is more interesting to watch than the latest Will Smith vehicle, I can tell you.

Mark Allen

And the award for best blog post title of the year goes to...

Texecution

My family wasn't too well off- or rather my parents focused a lot more heavily on sending their 3 sons to college and not so much on the Christmas presents- so now that I'm 30 I have no desire for gifts *at all.* It was tough growing up the only one of my friends without Nintendo, but the lack of student loans more than makes up for it. Anyways, I fully expect my kids to hate me for my absolute refusal to buy them tons of gifts, but they'll grow up to receive the greatest gift of all: a lack of entitlement.
(I meant that kind of joking, but also kind of not.)

rusty beltway

Comment #1 is right on: buy local as much as you can.

By February the retail numbers should be in and decisions will be made by the chains and big boxes. As trend forecaster Gerald Celente says: the next shoe to drop will be commercial real estate. Malls may be empty. Or for sale.

The possibility is that mom & pop opperations and small towns may start to bounce back. Bartering may become a viable alternative currency.

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