Consumerism schumerism

June 21, 2009 at 3:53 am 3 comments

one.So, like, where do you go shopping?

No seriously. Where and from whom do you purchase your food, clothing, and commodities from? Before becoming aware of the impact of my purchasing decisions, I would just go shopping, look at the specials, and purchase whatever caught my attention through price or shininess. We can’t deny the lust factor of something shiny, and marketers know this. However, I came to realize how buying clothes made in sweatshops has a price tag a lot higher than what that small, square piece of paper reads. I came to realize how much damage the cost of beef has on the environment. I came to realize that shopping is a lot deeper than what we think.

Let’s start thinking about our power as the consumer!

You can make a HUGE impact in the world through your purchasing decisions. Think of how much you spend in a month. I’m sure the media hype over the economic recession has you counting all your pretty pennies, so I’m sure you are a lot more conscious of where they are going. I’m asking you to go a little further and start changing the way you shop. Whether you’re male or female, young or old, rich or poor, there’s a certain button in our brains that go off when we buy something new. It presents a sense of satisfaction. So think about how freaking good it will feel when you know that you when you buy a pair of shoes, an impoverished kid in Brazil is going to get the same pair. For free. Check out TOM’s shoes http://www.tomsshoes.com

There are so many ways to make an impact, you don’t have to be all up in the streets with foghorns and signs (although that would be way awesome) and by becoming a conscious consumer, you are speaking volumes with your decisions. If there is no market for commodities and services that are harmful to the environment or human rights, there will be no businesses for such commodities and services. You don’t have to shop at Whole Foods and drive a Prius to make a statement about your consumer purchases (although, again that would be way awesome) Think about not eating or purchasing meat for one day of the week. Reuse and refill your water bottle. Try not shopping at Wal-Mart. Small, subtle changes that nonetheless have the power to make an impact. And thats’ what we’re all about, bringing the power back into the hands of the people. So show some muscle and flex your consumer guns. Be a minimalist. To quote MGMT “Enjoy yourself, take only what you need…” If only we could all realize we already have everything we need

Here is the list of the 2009 Brands with a Conscience award-winners:

Chhatra Sagar

Ekomarine

Kiva

One Water

rag-bag h

TOMS Shoes

Paul Newman (Colin Morley Award)

For more information on conscious consumer shopping check http://www.newdream.org/marketplace/index.php or http://www.changeeverything.ca/change/be-conscious-consumer

Oh, and one more thing. Please turn off the water when you’re brushing your teeth. Thanks 🙂

❤ Raychel

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Does real democracy exist? Yes, right here Ain’t Nothin but (GAY) Mammals

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Annette  |  June 22, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    Consumer power is much greater when working cooperatively, as a group. Like art, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. For almost everything we need we pool our money and buy quality local goods in huge bulk – directly from producers and suppliers – and get a very nice discount. There are no storage issues because we are splitting up the shipment as soon as it arrives, and there is far less packaging, transportation, spoilage and waste. We also split the costs of many durable items with friends and neighbors who need the same things. Often items are necessary but used only once a week or less. Why should everybody own the same things that they rarely use? We use a kind of checkout system that works very well. Oh, and talk about collective bargaining power! Highly recommended – I just started a blog about it.

    Reply
    • 2. wearepower  |  July 16, 2009 at 3:26 am

      “Consumer power is much greater when working cooperatively, as a group.” – I couldn’t agree more!! Thanks for the comment 🙂

      Reply
  • 3. James Cockerham  |  June 28, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    I do many things similar to what you suggest, but I’m going to disagree with you on shopping at walmart. If walmart didn’t have the high demand it has for reasonably priced quality goods, then those children working in sweatshops would have no money to support themselves.

    Life requires very little, enjoy what it offers, and remember that the material world is not reality.

    Reply

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