a boots-on-the-ground view of the change that's a-foot

After The Consumption…

by Tao Oliveto, Carrboro, NC
I do want everyone to buy eco-gifts during this season, and to buy recycled and biodegradable whenever possible and yes, there are companies large and small helping us create healthier goods and it all becomes a way of change that can save us and the planet…

But, even green-minded, biodegradable, post-consumer recycled stuff is still – more stuff. The real question is how much of the stuff do we really need (or even really want) and when will we get to the truth of the matter? Too many people, buying too much stuff wastes dwindling resources and perpetuates a throw-away culture! Remember my post about my online order from Real Goods? Well, I’ve received all of my “good for the planet” stuff – in 7 different boxes! After the third one arrived, I called to point out that this didn’t make much sense to me when the cover of their catalog reads “Reduce Your Carbon Footprint.”

What happens in the days following the gift-giving (ie: “shopping”). MORE SHOPPING! We scoop up all the things on sale and then some. We used up a bunch of fuel driving or flying to see relatives and now we get back in the car and drive, in a frenzy, to the mall for another fix. Because what happens when you get stuff? You want more stuff.

What can we gain when we get off the buy-and-die treadmill? A lot. Things like authenticity, healthier minds and bodies, time, and a long-forgotten thing called, meaning. This visionary photographer explains Post-Consumerism this way:

“Post-Consumerism is the idea that something can have value without having a price tag attached to it. Post-Consumerism revels in the power of the individual: in the belief that a person is not what they buy, own or consume. Post-Consumerism is a re-awakening of humanism; a fatigue of being pushed to the point of purchasing strictly for vanity. Post-Consumerism says that one cannot purchase identity, individuality or self and speaks to those who really should know better.”

— Chip Morton, Adbusters No. 75 January/February

To Read More, go to

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply

THE TAO OF CHANGE [the way of a better world]

brought to you by The Change, a strategy and design agency with an agenda to change the world