May 22, 2013

Breeding New Consumers



In the ponzi scheme that is global consumerism the most important thing is a continuous influx of new victims buying in at the bottom level. These rubes provide the profits for those at the top. No new rubes, no profits, no ponzi scheme. That is why the powers want us to breed new consumers.

In recent years the birth rate of many consumer countries (including my own) has been steadily falling. Economists are panicking! Business leaders and their friends in government are panicking!

The persecution of the childless, something that has always existed, is ramping up. We need more consumers for the ponzi scheme or, we are warned, the whole thing will go up in smoke.

Those without children are "selfish" and cause very bad things to happen including "disease, war, and economic stagnation or collapse".

Sorry about hastening the Apocalypse, but I can't remember a time that I ever wanted children of my own. I have no regrets about making this decision.

I am no grumpy child hater. I love children and have worked with kids in a variety of capacities ranging from camp counsellor to elementary school teacher. But it is silly to think that everyone has the obligation to have children of their own just to provide endless growth for a sick system.

If consumer economies must act like a cancer or die, then by all means let's let them die. We can then replace them with better ways of meeting everyone's basic needs in a sustainable fashion.

Now I am more satisfied with being child-free than ever before. It is always a pleasure for me to deny the consumer beast more fuel for the inferno of its dark mills.

I am happy to do my part whether that means buying less, traveling less, or breeding less. By not adding to the creche, we are helping to ensure there is enough for the children already born.

10 comments:

  1. I too enjoy children and have worked with them in different capacities, but am quite content with never having any of my own.

    More people should think through the decision to procreate and not give into the pressure.

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    Replies
    1. I agree - it is not for everyone. However, it is assumed that everyone will have at least one baby. It goes along with other unquestioned things such as the job, the mortgage, consumer goods, and annual vacations to exotic locations in the attempt to recover from it all.

      We should tell the truth and let our children know that there are many options to choose from when deciding how to best live one's life. Mainstream expectations present only one possibility in an endless list of ways to live happily on this good earth.

      Delete
  2. My husband and I are childfree by choice. I've known for sure since I was about 18 (I'm almost 37 now) that I never wanted kids. Not only are we doing our part to curb overpopulation, life is much simpler being childfree!

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    1. Nicole, I am glad you said it - "life is much simpler being childfree". Is that not just true?

      Our life is as full and busy as we want it with just the two of us.

      Delete
  3. I've heard it too but I've NEVER understood why people say childfree people are selfish. It seems to me that having children only because of societal pressures and not caring about the child is the selfish action. Realizing one isn't cut out for or doesn't wholeheartedly want to be a parent, then not being one is unselfish.

    But then I find a lot of things in the world rather messed up.

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    Replies
    1. min hus, Most childfree people I know have given their decision serious thought as it is not one that most people take lightly.

      I can't say the same for those with children - often babies are not the result of planning, but rather, the lack thereof.

      You don't need to have children of your own to be able to contribute to "the little people" as my teacher father called them.

      There is no lack of children in need in any community, and volunteering to help them out is a great way to "have kids" without having kids. The little people will never forget the effort and may teach the adult a thing or two as well.

      And aren't all kids everyone's kids anyways, in the "it takes a village" state of mind?

      Delete
  4. AnonymousMay 23, 2013

    I am all for people choosing not to have children, I wish more people would! It truly is a very non-selfish choice.

    However, I do love mine very much and am glad they are here! They are are quite the non-consumers though. The other day I took my nine year-old son to the store because I thought he needed some summer clothes and I had him look around. He said, "I don't really like anything here and I have three pairs of shorts already, that's enough". I think he'll turn out to be even less of a shopper than I am.

    Jen

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    1. Jen, I think if left to heed their inner voice, kids naturally tend toward the simple life.

      At what point do adults say, "That's enough"?

      Is it ever enough?

      What we need is a kids "That's Enough!" movement. It would be appropriate since our children (and theirs) will be inheriting the earth after we lay waste to it.

      Congratulations on raising non-consumers. Your little guy is on his way!

      Delete
  5. Hi Gregg,
    I've read a few posts and can appreciate your point of view. But there's one question that nags me in the back of my head with your ideology. And that is, what if people don't want to be farmers. Or put beans into cans. Or walk everywhere. Or not use planes to travel great distances. What about the people who understand consumerism and recognize that money gives freedom and technology opens our lives to new possibilities?

    I'm all for protecting children from labour camps and ensuring clothing factory buildings don't collapse. But why buy nothing? 'Nothing' is an empty word that implies even the shovel and shoes on our feet shouldn't be purchased.

    I like buying books from amazing writers. I'd love to enjoy a bike ride through latin america and learn about their culture. And it seems we both like using the internet, blogging, and email as tools, which are also not free. Anti-consumerism keeps me here, isolated, and unable to reach the world.

    'Buy nothing' seems a way of limiting our experiences in life.

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    1. Tom, You bring up some good questions. Most people I know, myself included, have to buy something. However, even in our money-based system there are people that get by without money. From all accounts, they continue to live full and interesting lives.

      People should acquire (or buy) what they need to make them happy. What we take should be balanced with the needs of others, and since there are planetary limits, personal limits are required as well.

      As Gandhi said, there is enough for everyone's need, but not everyones greed.

      While money and technology serve a function, both have limits in their power to make us happier. Beyond a certain point they may have unintended consequences and end up making us less happy.

      Sometimes buying things can limit our experiences and increase our isolation - what happens to the sense of community when everyone has bought their own washer and dryer and no longer meet in the laundromat on a regular basis? And didn't the television create a severe limit on our direct experience of life?

      For Linda and I, limiting what we buy means we have to work less and as a result have more time to live. It has been one way to increase our experiences in life, especially in nature. We live freely in the moment rather than perpetually waiting for the next money spending event to give us a boost.

      Thankfully, experiences in life are not limited to buying things. Indeed, some people still think that the best things in life are free.

      Rather than be anti-anything, I would rather be seen as pro-sustainability.

      What about people that don't want to live sustainably? That creates a problem that no one is willing to look at right now, let alone try and solve. But overconsumption will have to be addressed (probably sooner than later) as the planet and its inhabitants increasingly suffer from the failure to live with, and show respect for, the natural world.

      Thank you for reading and sharing your views.

      Delete

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