Consumer culture

Earlier this week, Alberta Primetime dropped by our casa to interview Julie about the first few weeks of Buy Nothing Year.

Check out this segment aptly titled Consumer culture where Naomi Krogman, a University of Alberta professor, and economist and author Mark Anielski weigh in on the topic and help contextualize it from an economic and cultural perspective.

Naomi and Mark

Naomi Krogman and Mark Anielski discuss Buy Nothing Year on Alberta Primetime, Aug 29, 2013.

What do you think? Are we doing something “counter cultural”? Do you consider yourself to be a “conscious consumer”? What attachments do you have that would be hard to get rid of? Do you believe Mark’s case that relationships improve quality of life over material goods? Do more “choices” make you happier?


About Geoffrey & Julie

Geoffrey & Julie are Calgary-based roommates embarking on a one-year life experiment in not buying sh*t.

2 thoughts on “Consumer culture

  1. Hi Julie and Geoff, I would like to challenge you to challenge Mayor Nenshi and the candidates for the forthcoming election to think about how your actions are part of a new economics of wellbeing and happiness. Let’s challenge all Albertans to rise to the challenge to shift our energy towards maximizing wellbeing and happiness and less on maximizing GDP, profits and material goods! You and I know that genuine happiness comes from the strength of our relationships with others, the joy of sharing, the time we spend with each other, and genuine altruism. We know that life is abundant with opportunities to experience joy that are not tied to money and material goods. At the same time we must be aware that a certain level or sufficiency of income and material needs are necessary for the pursuit of true happiness. I remind people that ‘happiness’ comes from the Greek word “eudaimonia’ which literally means ‘the wellbeing of spirit’ or ‘spiritual wellbeing.’

    Let’s challenge all Albertans to reflect on the value of consuming less while maximizing wellbeing and genuine happiness.

    Let’s reflect on the strength of our past, our history of cooperatives and our entrepreneurial spirit.

    Let us ponder how we can wisely use our natural abundance of oil, gas, land and other resources to ensure a flourishing economy of wellbeing for generations to come.

    In each decision we make, whether private, household, business or in government, let us ask ‘how will this decision contribute to an improvement in wellbeing?’

    TIme to build a new economy based on wellbeing.

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