Friday, October 28, 2011

The Greed Season Begins

LLBean They're starting to arrive, mixed in with the political flyers--circulars and catalogs proclaiming BIG SALES full of bargains.  Clothes, jewelry, small appliances--anything you want or need and it's all ON SALE--at BARGAIN prices!


You know, until the last year or so, it never occurred to me that our entire economy is entirely based upon GREED.  Capitalism depends on people wanting EVERYTHING they can get their hands on, whether they need it or not.  Businesses, from tiny to gigantic, want us to max out our credit cards and strive to acquire EVERYTHING.  And we fall for it!

I was caught up in that treadmill myself.  A few years back, my mother asked me what I wanted for Christmas and I said EVERYTHING.  And I still do ... but, I'm finding that while I may still want everything, I'm learning to live with only what I really need.  And you know what, I don't always need to pay retail for what I need, either.

How did we come to this "avarice is everything" type of life?  (And more importantly, what does it say about us as a people?)  We've allowed ourselves to be seduced by ads and TV commercials--with colorful photography--to want everything and RIGHT NOW.  From hamburgers to hummers--and the bigger the better.

SigstuffedCrust For instance, take fast food commercials.  They make every burger or slice of pizza look like a million bucks.  Usually with long strings of gooey cheese (stretched in slo-mo), or hamburger buns that look like they've been sliced with a laser beam.  When you get the actual food at these establishments, the meat is gray and the buns often look like someone sat on them.  Stuffthatpiehole The cheese is gooey all right, but it's so stringy you need a pair of scissors to cut it before you can stuff it into your pie hole.  No wonder there's an obesity problem in this country.  You can't watch TV for more than ten minutes without some fast food giant telling you to EAT IT ALL and hang the calories.

It's time to say ENOUGH.  It's time to go back to gilding walnuts and stringing popcorn to decorate the tree.  It's time to say "family first" not "consumer debt" to the holiday season.  It's time to say, "I will not go into hock so some CEO (of a company where the labor has be outsourced offshore) can collect his multimillion dollar golden parachute."

What do I want for Christmas?  A few books.  Maybe a couple of CDs.  But do I want my family to go into hock for it?

Gingerbreadman NO!

I'm going to try for a more simple holiday season this year.  I have a feeling, I'll enjoy it a whole lot better.

How about you?