Friday, March 20, 2009

Sixty Years of Consuming

Sixty years of Consuming
In 1948 there were two events that I remember most distinctly: The Cleveland Indians won the World Series and I learned to apply a new word to citizens of the United States; "consumers." Before then we were citizens and basically considered to be the producers of the wealth of the country. As consumers, the semantic emphasis was placed more on spending and buying than on producing. I think that was the beginning of the decline. Precding generations worked hard to build a country that protected freedom by promoting individual responsibility. However, as consumers, the tendency became to redefine freedom as license to avoid responsibility. Each generation wishes the best for its children, but suddenly the best was defined in terms of ease rather than accomplishmnet. The end became far more important than the means.