I personally like how people pretend that they understand everything that is going on in the world. Almost every person I spoke to regarding global topics that influence our society, EVERY person always gives an answer. Quality of the answer does not matter much, as far as it makes sense to his own human brain. No, this is not mockery from my side, this is the reality. Ever heard of the Moscow rules? “Once is an Accident, Twice is a Coincidence, Three Times is a Pattern”? People are spreading their ideas at a fast pace, some people would compare it with cancer… I will not do it of course.
Where was I? oh yeah… Consumerism… What is Consumerism?
“Consumerism is a social and economic order and ideology that encourages the acquisition of goods and services in ever-increasing amounts”
People are very much involved in this consumption of goods. Different goods. Goods that were not even consumable few decades ago… We started converting things into products due to the major laziness of our society. Remember how we used to peel bananas ourselves? Well, now think of the peeled and cut banana in the store… Want to hear the saddest part? People are buying it… There is no wrong in the selling or buying it, the problem lies much deeper than that. The change is society encourages this excessive consumption.
Humans are cancer
Personally, I like to think that we are all civilized thinkers, we use our inner rationale to make decisions, and we believe that being logical will make our decisions make sense. This might be true to a very small amount of population; the rest is just lying to themselves. Majority of our society (at least one out of two genders. Ooohhhh….) is subconsciously still driven by an impulse and emotional decision making. Another half of the population tries to prove their dominance and masculinity, yet crying in the shower every other night in a fetus position.
That small group of people who understands this societal behaviour converts everything around us in order for us to spend money, show off and make someone else jealous. We are too full of ourselves! The problem with that, according to Rees and Hern, is that it fails to recognise that the physical resources to fuel this growth are finite. “We’re still driven by growing and expanding, so we will use up all the oil, we will use up all the coal, and we will keep going till we fill the Petri dish and pollute ourselves out of existence,” he says.
We are the insecure society
Some people would agree with me that we live in a world which is ironic in its core. Some issues are so rhetoric, even we as “civilized thinkers” know the solutions. Regardless that understanding, we still are racing with this consumer spree, and are still enslaved by this artificial status that defines us by what we consume.
As an Internet Marketer myself, I want to believe that fast-evolving advertising industry delivers more value than harm to the consumers and people. This is true from a business perspective where generating money is goal number one, but let us think 20 years into the future. I am honestly scared of how our society is going to look like…
Solution for Consumerism?
The first step is to understand that society indeed has a problem? Cliché isn’t it? The hope is that governments will stop being greedy and understand that this extensive consumerism and never-ending economic growth is incompatible with the finite material resources has to offer. Without a strict control, this destruction of our society will continue. II always try to think long-term, not 5 years, but around 20-30. This long-term perspective can completely turn around the thinking process and let us think “outside the box”. People must learn how to live in balance with each other and nature.
There are many international organizations which are fighting for global justice and equal distribution of wealth. They believe that leadership of the country must act in collective interest for the future of our society rather than show their competitive instincts. One of such organizations is Avaaz, check them out.
Who is to blame for Consumerism?
Advertisers! Marketers! Online Marketers! Me as well I suppose. Advertising feeds us on every social platform and any page on the internet and makes us want to acquire that new iPhone X! Fighting advertising can be more tricky, as at the moment we are all thinking about how to make advertising more targeted, reach more people and generate more leads. See what I mean? We are not thinking about what this extensive bombarding is going to lead to in 20 years from now.
What would be the fix? Well.. In a perfect world, it would be anti-marketing and make consumerism shameful. “Advertising is an instrument for construction of people’s everyday reality, so we could use the same media to construct a cultural paradigm in which conspicuous consumption is despised,” – William Rees. “We’ve got to make people ashamed to be seen as a ‘future eater’.” He says.
SHAME! SHAME! SHAME!