Intelligent Consumption Introduction

These are notes-to-myself for an article I’m planning to do for the Feb/Activism issue of sevenmagazine.org. I am planning for it to just be the introduction to a larger work destined for the ‘activism’ page (to be reincarnated) of this site. The basic gist is, I’m slowly learning how to live a simple life of responsibility and true stewardship–what I call Intelligent Consumption:

  1. The brand bubble is going to burst, just like the internet bubble burst. Both are/were based on nothing. Nothing can’t sustain! All types of clothes can be found that are made in the USA, even more if include western Europe, even more if using what I call a ‘sliding scale.’ The kicker is they are no more expensive, often times less expensive! You are paying for the brand, the marketing, the Machinery it takes to keep the ‘nothing’ from imploding! The actual production and distribution costs associated with producing w/o sweatshops is not the issue!

There is going to be a resurgence of authenticity in this country. People are going to get sick of being afraid, isolated. Legal drugs and the numbness of blind consumption won’t be able to keep up with the overwhelming social metadepression. Politicians won’t be able to keep up the fear tactics or create distractions. The media, which caters to both, will become unsatisfying and forced to change by the demand of the people for more authenicity in their cultural consumption. This revolution of The Real will by default break the brand bubble. There is a grand integration of the current Numbness, in the markets, politics, media…it grew from and feeds people’s fear, fear of death, fear of suffering. As we as a society begin to realize that the avoidance of suffering and death directly correlates to the loss of true life and living, we will slowly begin to reject those things specifically made to create The Numb. It’s The Numb vs. The Real and The Numb has been winning for too long. Natural historic cycles and the pendulum effect dictate that both dramatic events and slow social shifts will begin to move us back to The Real.

  1. Living space. Do not live in suburbs. Suburbs represent the embodiment of the cultural and mental apathy that is modern USAmerica. Live in urban or rural areas.

It can be as simple as the amount of signage you are exposed to. The predominace of strip malls in suburbia, and the necessity of automobile-based transportation, means a much higher exposure to branded reality vs. true reality.

The actual emergence of suburbia is based on a nonreality, an idyllic deamworld with no suffering, a constant–competitive even–economic and social upward mobility, and protection from any real or perceived threat to that illusion.

Barring the social mobility to move from a suburban area, live in areas of suburbia that, for whatever reason, have avoided the spiritual weight of its surroundings and become true communities. South Florida is a perfect example. The entire area is the epitome of suburbia, however there are small pockets that are the equivilant of its ‘urban centers.’ The areas near the beach, for example, despite the high tourist concentration, and perhaps because of the also high native/surfer/waterculture concentration, is one such area. Also certain areas, for whatever reason, have not yet succumbed to the ubernonreality of the suburban machine. Large portions of Delray beach and south West Palm Beach are, suprisingly, such areas where you can literally feel the weight lift as you drive into them.

  1. Culturally. Integration Research stuff. List of indie record labels, distributers, indie publishers, distributers. The culture industry is as large as, if not a larger culprit, of branded unreality creation than the clothing and food industries.

  2. Ah yes, food industry. Another whole can of worms.

  3. Paradoxes. The only non-sweatshop jacket is sheepskin…the same lamb you wouldn’t eat because of the way it was industrialized. The money for indie films comes from the success of branded commercial films. Etc.