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Toward Balanced Consumerism in the New Economy

Over-consumption and its ills will give way to balanced, functional consumption and a healthier way of life.

Over the last 50 years, consumer consumption has become a key element in our lives. Today it determines our social status...

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From Consumption to Consumerism

The term “consumption” is defined as “the using up of goods and services” to satisfy man’s needs. In Neoclassical Economics, an individual gains the more he or she personally consumes. The economic theory deals with the behavior of the homo-economicus (economic human) and one’s relations with one’s environment...

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Who Profits from Over-Consumption?

Consumerism is vigorously promoted by giant corporations, advertising agencies and the media, the goal being to sell us as many products as possible for the sole purpose of maximizing their profits...

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Buying More, Saving Less

According to the magazine, Global Finance, “Household saving rates as percentage of disposable income in the U.S. has declined from 7.3 in 1992 to a mere 1.7 in 2007, at the start of the financial crisis.” People are squandering their savings and even increasing their debt to “stay in the game,” with the full endorsement of the advertising industry...

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The 2008 Crisis Was Due to Americans’ Reckless Consumption

A classic example of such an exploding time bomb is the housing bubble that inflated continually after the beginning of the 21st century. Until 2008, banks were tempting people to make loans even when they could not afford to repay them. They allowed applicants to buy houses with 100% funding, thus creating huge demands in the real-estate markets...

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Education for Consumerism Turns Us into Compulsive Shoppers

Consumerism has become a culture as a result of the kind of education that most people receive. Education begins with the parents’ personal example, as well as that of friends and the environment as a whole...

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Consumption Means Happiness—or Does It?

Imagine how much a new car would delight you. We enjoy examining the options—the model, the color, the advantages and disadvantages, speaking to people about it and reading about it on the internet. Finally, the day arrives and we are certain that in a few hours we will be the owners of the car we’ve dreamed of for months--or even years...

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Over-Consumption and the Ecological Crisis

According to a 2011 survey by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, titled, “The Great Green Technological Transformation,” progress has enabled us to raise the standard of living of the world population...

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From Consumerism to Balanced Consumption

The solution is clear. Each of us must support a decrease in the present excessive consumption that has long become a key aspect of our lives, and that of the global economy. Instead, we must encourage balanced consumption. As this transition unfolds, private consumption will return to more sustainable levels, replacing the unrestrained gobbling fueled by commercials and social pressures. Many redundant products will disappear and consumption will return to a focus on practical usage. Instead of brands as symbols of social status, the degree of one’s contribution to the community and general well-being will determine one’s position in society. By reducing demand, prices will drop, and dignified living will finally become affordable for all...

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The Need for Broad Agreement about the Nature of the Change

The necessary transition from our current excessive consumption to a balanced one cannot be dictated by the authorities. If it were, we would only aspire to return to the present system as soon as possible. Only if the transition to balanced consumption is accompanied by a conceptual change throughout society, via extensive education efforts and support from the social environment will we comprehend that the change is to our benefit. After a short adaptation period, we will feel it, too...

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The Advantages of Balanced Consumption

Along with the transition to balanced consumption under the umbrella of the mutual guarantee, the numerous problems resulting from excessive consumption elaborated earlier will be solved. Additionally, we will discover the advantages of mutual guarantee:..

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A Change through Education, Information, and the Influence of the Environment

For one who is born into a consumer-oriented environment, a change to a balanced society, the cessation of producing redundant products, and a relinquishing of shopping as the favorite pastime may be seen as a bleak forecast, as economic and cultural regressions. Economists might argue that the global GDP will drop and with it governments’ ability to care for the needs of their citizens...

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