“It turns out that buying stuff because it satisfies desire is OK. …. We want as well as need. The experience of desire is nice! We love it! In my view the crisis of consumerism is not that it creates desire but that it fails to satiate. Most critiques of consumerism and the advertising industry it created seem to focus on how bad creating desire is rather than asking if we can create desire for, well, something else. This turns out to be on the minds of the new consumer: I want to want but I want to want what will actually satisfy me.”As the poet once said, “the end of desire, is the end of desire.” So could that something else, then, perhaps be a more sustainable human presence in the world? All of this sets the stage nicely for David Korten’s Agenda for a New Economy.
“The New Economy story that we humans are capable of creating a vibrant, peaceful, cooperative world bursting with life resonates deep within most people. Once that connection is made, the trance is broken and we are free to find a path to reclaim control of our lives and get on with living a beautiful world into being. Corporate advertisers and public relations propagandists have mastered and professionalized the arts of such cultural manipulation, particularly through corporate-controlled mass media. They would have us base our individual identity on the corporate logos we wear, the branded products we consume, the corporation for which we work, and the Wall Street–funded political party to which we belong.”As we sit here on the verge of the 2012 annual day of shopping hysteria, with Cyber Monday sales already breaking new records, we can reflect on the thought that things are starting to change and that this could be the beginning of the end of an era. Once, we the people begin to realize that we are really the ones in charge of deciding what we want; that will be a powerful moment. It might just open the way to the creation of an economy that works for all of us, not just the guys running the calculators. [Image credit: Michael Holden: Flickr Creative Commons] RP Siegel, PE, is an inventor, consultant and author. He co-wrote the eco-thriller Vapor Trails, the first in a series covering the human side of various sustainability issues including energy, food, and water in an exciting and entertaining format. Now available on Kindle. Follow RP Siegel on Twitter.
RP Siegel (1952-2021), was an author and inventor who shined a powerful light on numerous environmental and technological topics. His work appeared in TriplePundit, GreenBiz, Justmeans, CSRWire, Sustainable Brands, Grist, Strategy+Business, Mechanical Engineering, Design News, PolicyInnovations, Social Earth, Environmental Science, 3BL Media, ThomasNet, Huffington Post, Eniday, and engineering.com among others . He was the co-author, with Roger Saillant, of Vapor Trails, an adventure novel that shows climate change from a human perspective. RP was a professional engineer - a prolific inventor with 53 patents and President of Rain Mountain LLC a an independent product development group. RP was the winner of the 2015 Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week blogging competition. RP passed away on September 30, 2021. We here at TriplePundit will always be grateful for his insight, wit and hard work.