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indros13's Journal: Buy Nothing Day 1

Journal by indros13
I was browsing the post on Best Buy and Black Friday prices and inevitably was drawn into one of those perennial debates about the value of Buy Nothing Day. For those unfamiliar with the term, it's an effort by concerned citizens to reduce the bevy of materialism that dominates the holiday ('holy day') season in America by refusing to shop on the "biggest shopping day of the year," the Friday after Thanksgiving.

One user remarked that this was dumb (broke and hippie), because it won't accomplish anything and it will hurt the economy. He went on to describe how materialism has made us rich in America.

I wrote back for two reasons. One, I don't think Buy Nothing Day has anything to do with whacko ideas. I see it as a move in the direction of moderation, juxtaposed with the excesses of 364 other days of consumerism. I also contest the value of supporting the economy. For all the material goods and increased standard of living in America since World War II (the true era of mass consumption), people are actually LESS HAPPY than they were fifty years ago.

In other words, that old saw about money and happiness is true and perhaps it's worth taking a day off from the futile consumerist race to contemplate what in life is really worthwhile.

For more on Buy Nothing Day, check out their homepage at Adbusters.com

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Buy Nothing Day

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  • Good point. I agree with you.

    I am a little fearful that Buy Nothing Day is slowly being made obsolete by the increasing popularity and scope of monthy services.

    I can hold off purchasing anything at the store, but I'm still going to be paying for my cell phone, ISP charges, netflix subscription, and so forth. Kind of scary.

The trouble with the rat-race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin

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