Culture of Consumerism

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  • The Culture of Consumerism
    • The Law of Diminishing Returns
      • "The more you have, less value each thing has"
      • Subsequently, choice has become frustrating rather than empowering
        • Supermarkets now overstocked - 5 times as many goods as were on the shelves in 1975
      • You inevitably reach a saturation point
    • Consumer capitalism
      • Based on the idea that the more we have, the more our quality of life will improve
      • Catch-22 is that we have given up being the rational consumer.
        • This is because of all the ridiculous choice we have, and the finite time in which to make a purchase. Contradiction - harder to make a decision when there's more choice.
      • What we really value is the non material things - social values
        • Stuff is marketed to us from the framework that we will achieve these social values if we buy more stuff
        • Love, friendship, etc
    • . “People in the West have got no happier in the last 50 years. They have become much richer… but they are no happier. This shocking fact should be the starting point for much of our social science.” – Richard Layard
    • 3 main environmental problems
      • Pollution and waste
      • Dwindling natural resources
      • Climate change

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