Thursday, January 24, 2008

Is it just me?

This video has wandered its way back into my life. Here's just 6 minutes, but if you watch 1 minute you will probably get the point. Here's. the full 20-minute version.

I think there are important points in it, but also think it bashes our government. Is it just me? I know our government hasn't done everything right, but this bothers me.

Have been pondering a lot in the last month about how we are supposed to be good citizens and help stimulate the economy and spend money, yet give generously and save (some say at least three month’s salary) for a rainy day.

I usually try to keep this blog all fluffy with no politics or anything, but I just can't stop myself and am wondering about your views or if I'm taking this all the wrong way.


Annie said...

Interesting video. I'll have to watch the full version soon. I can understand her points on us being over-spenders, but, it is our government's job to keep our economy afloat. Would she be happier if we were in a recession and we didn't have any money to spend?

chill24 said...

i too don't like to hear or see people bash america or our president. i do know there is room for criticism but not taken to an extreme.

Jason R said...

Nice post, Kim.

I have to say I disagree with the theory in this video. My fellow Americans probably watch too much TV but I don't think they do everything the box tells them to. Very few people I know are that dim.

The pot-shot at Bush was expected. He's an easy target and bashing him instantly makes any dimwit look edgy. From what I remember Bush's message was more like 'Don't shrink back from life because of this. Live your lives as normally as possible while you grieve and don't give the SOB's the satisfaction of disrupting your life'

I think today's consumerism is a product of our government school system's failure to teach basic economics and critical thinking skills. Instead they taught how the government can take care of everything and that students should feel good about themselves no matter what they do.

We live in the biggest free market economy in the world and few know or understand it. Instead they complain about what they're entitled to while they wear Tommy Hilfiger jeans to work at Taco Bell.

Marci said...

I stumbled upon your blog again. How are you?! I watched all 6 minutes and I think she's oversimplified things a bit. She's made capitalism and gov't canned into greedy, money-hungry, consumption-driven machines...which they are in 1 sense, but not entirely. She's also made it that Americans are controlled by this machine she presented. Um, yeah, we've all met those who are sucked into this machine. But, there are "facts" she presented that I don't quite buy, but some I know from other studies that are true. Bottom line, she doesn't hold up any standard but just points to concerns re: things like 99% of our things are in the trash after 6 months (I disagree), but I do agree there is this "planned obsolescence" and "perceived obsolescence." Spend time in a 3rd world country and you'll agree our nation is obsessed with consumption. There are even those who have coined the term "shopping therapy," and I know many who do this with or without realizing it. She spoke of a happiness a Christian, I'd be far more interested in a joy-indicator. Sadly, she's dead-on about many things. We are a nation that acts as if we have an umbilical cord to our TV or a credit card. Sadly, college kids are now known to leave school with a credit card debt around 25K. Bottom line, we need Jesus to fill our void and shopping and TV can't do it. The ways of the world won't do it. And sadly, the "Church" is as sucked into this as the world. Jesus is our only hope! Cut up the credit cards and turn off the TV and get off the computer. Easier said than done? It's Lent...maybe give up something like that. God's peace reigns!

Heidi said...

Think about this video critically. If the claims are true (the intentional creation of consumerism as government policy, the percentage of consumed products which are trashed in 6 mo, etc) than it is up to us to decide if this is morally good or bad. If Consumerism is GOOD (many people are great proponants of the drive behind capitalism) than just because this woman makes her claim with disapproval in her voice, the govenment isn't in wrong.

IF, however, you deem that policies to force consumerism are bad, than this is a very resonable critique of our government.

Please don't be afraid of critique. Thousands of people have died to uphold our liberty to participate and impact change in this very government.

Heidi said...

The rest of my comment. The clip does begin with statements that the gov was envolved with the advent of Giant consumerism by way of policy.

But the REST of the clip is about how businesses, the producers and marketers of these products, have created this new IDEOLOGY of perceived need. This seems very obvious to me.

Try this. Be intentional about BLOCKING advertising from you life for even 1 week. You will become aware of how bombarded you are with the message to spend. THEN don't buy anything new for 1 month. (other than food)

I haven't owned a tv in almost 10 years and I don't even know about many brands, now. I also know the liberation of NOT shopping. While I was a missionary in east Africa, I realized how embarrassed and even ashamed most of us should be about how we spend our money and what we crave and value.