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The Story of Stuff

boostindoubles

Nacho Libre
Mar 16, 2004
4,480
2,081
Yakistan
Anyone here seen it? Its 20 minutes long. I think it's pretty accurate and maybe a little over simplified (only 20 min). It is a cartoon explanation of our fascination with shopping and buying new things... then throwing them away and buying everything all over again. Not applicable to everyone completely, but I can relate to some of the things she is talking about. Watch it and discuss.

The Story of Stuff
 

dwaugh

Turbo Monkey
May 23, 2002
1,816
0
Bellingham, Washington ~ U.S.A.
I've seen this. I'd say it's applicable to everyone who will see it here, basically. Unless you absolutely do not throw things away and reuse everything and just don't buy things that will end up being thrown away (among other things), then I can say that you can probably relate to more than just some of what she talks about.

The whole system is just crazy in it's own way. People need to stop seeing constant economic growth as a good thing, because it's not, it's not natural, and it's simply unsustainable. Personally, I'm jumping out of the system bits at a time because I don't want to be a part of it. I don't have a drill currently, and I do woodwork requiring one now and then, so instead of buying a power drill, I'll buy a hand drill. They might not be quite as fast or as powerful at times, but they are much more reliable and long lasting.

How many people have seen this map (below) of the so called 'plastic continents'? Garbage that gets dumped in the oceans or finds it's way there gets caught in the middle of the currents moving in different directions and has built up into continent sized masses of plastic sludge floating just below the surface, up to a few meters thick... another good example of out of sight, out of mind... it's disgusting.

 
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Sherpa

Basking in fail.
Jan 28, 2004
2,240
0
Arkansaw
The whole system is just crazy in it's own way. People need to stop seeing constant economic growth as a good thing, because it's not, it's not natural, and it's simply unsustainable. Personally, I'm jumping out of the system bits at a time because I don't want to be a part of it.
You're right, we should still be living in caves. :crazy:
 
Feb 13, 2002
1,079
7
Seattle, WA
I'm with you. People have so much stuff it makes me sick. Not me though. I was very careful to do my research and buy a separate plasma screen tv that was perfectly suited to each room in my house, so I wouldn't need to replace them for MONTHS.
 

boostindoubles

Nacho Libre
Mar 16, 2004
4,480
2,081
Yakistan
Yes I do relate to some of the concepts presented in the video, but I try to live the most sustainable life I can. I haven't owned a TV in 7 years, I work on and study sustainable organic farming practices.. etc...
Granted, I'm flying to SLC in a couple weeks to go ride Moab, and in April I'm flying to Kona for a friends wedding.

I think it's valuable that people understand this system the USA operates under is entirely a consumer based society. More importantly, that it was designed to be this way. It is obviously a system that has serious errors and cannot sustain itself, just look around. It inherently brings greed and crime up, along with jealousy and divisions among the social classes. In the two hundred years the USA has been around the environment has taken huge hits and dives. Compare this to a different culture, the Kogi indians of Colombia, who have lived in seclusion in their mountains for 500 years! They have a completely different structured society that improves the Earth rather than exploit it.

The more people are aware of the truth of consumerism, the more they can begin to make their own decisions about how to live their lives and not be guided by the next fad, fashion, or tv commercial.
 
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manimal

Ociffer Tackleberry
Feb 27, 2002
7,214
16
Blindly running into cactus
i really like that movie. it gets the facts across without sounding condescending and earth nazi-ish. i just sent the link to my family and will be showing it to my two oldest kids this week.
thanks for posting BD :thumb:
 

dwaugh

Turbo Monkey
May 23, 2002
1,816
0
Bellingham, Washington ~ U.S.A.
I try to live the most sustainable life I can. I haven't owned a TV in 7 years, I work on and study sustainable organic farming practices.. etc...
Awesome. I gave up TV a while ago for a lot of reasons. I'm studying all organic growing methods, but I'm focused on permaculture. I just wish I had more available land; I have a little bit of land to work with but not much at all. If I had the land to grow a majority of my own food, I would, not to mention I would also implement all sorts of other sustainable design techniques.

Granted, I'm flying to SLC in a couple weeks to go ride Moab, and in April I'm flying to Kona for a friends wedding.
Ooohh...

I understand that everyone has different situations, etc. Personally, I've pretty much made up my mind that I'll never fly again.

You're right, we should still be living in caves.
Umm, no.

And since it's nearly impossible for me to make a short post on such a topic, I'll add this:

The world in 1950 used 10 million barrels of oil a day instead of our 85 million, and only a third of that increase is due to population growth. The rest is just us--and it is mostly us in the West--driving, flying, buying, consuming, and discarding more in a month than our grandparents did in a year. The popular image of the ‘50s as an age of conspicuous consumption, suburban sprawl, and TV dinners misses the point. Those things were newsworthy then because they were new and unusual. Their equivalents today have so insinuated themselves into our lives that we accept them as natural, like omnipresent casinos or television violence.

The golden image of the ‘50s is not just nostalgia. In his 2000 book Bowling Alone, sociologist Robert Putnam showed that all habits of community voting, volunteering, PTA chapters, Elk and Kiwanis memberships, card games, family dinners, all the way to hitchhiking and sidewalk courtesies--peaked in the mid-20th century and have since steadily declined. Happiness, as defined by survey responses, peaked then as well and has plummeted even as our incomes tripled.
Sounds like life was just terrible when we weren't consuming so much... :rolleyes:

http://www.energybulletin.net/node/48209
 
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boostindoubles

Nacho Libre
Mar 16, 2004
4,480
2,081
Yakistan
You know I decided the other day that if/when I start a vegetable farm it'll be called permasutra. cause... well.. permaculture is intimate to say the least. Growing food is great. We planted 6 flats of broccoli, 4 flats kolhrabi, some swiss chard, and kale friday in the greenhouse at work. Getting ready for the CSA this summer means that we start early in the greenhouse.

And yea... not too stoked about the plane rides but I figure if the plane is going to make the flight anyways, and I need to go where it's flying then I can rationalize that.
 

boostindoubles

Nacho Libre
Mar 16, 2004
4,480
2,081
Yakistan
Bikers love their stuff! Maybe thats why I posted on here. But most bikers have some sense of respect for the natural world, right? I mean we head out on singletrack trails through the woods and run our bodies through some tough physical exercise. I mean were not all hipsters and trend seekers are we?

And Manimal, I agree it is a good vid. It's very straight with no crazy doomsday message. I'm glad you can understand it! You should've seen the reactions of some college students I saw watching it. They called it extreme liberal fear messaging. And the kicker was that they were all wearing TheNorthFace fleeces! haha
 

manimal

Ociffer Tackleberry
Feb 27, 2002
7,214
16
Blindly running into cactus
And Manimal, I agree it is a good vid. It's very straight with no crazy doomsday message. I'm glad you can understand it! You should've seen the reactions of some college students I saw watching it. They called it extreme liberal fear messaging. And the kicker was that they were all wearing TheNorthFace fleeces! haha
i just liked how she portrayed the message without the usual "i'm an elitist earth-nazi and you are a baby killer if you buy stuff from china" attitude. just plain, simple, and to the point without the usual finger pointing, us vs. them, garbage. in other words, it was done tastefully.
 

jerseydirt

Turbo Monkey
May 6, 2007
1,936
0
dirty jerz
i just liked how she portrayed the message without the usual "i'm an elitist earth-nazi and you are a baby killer if you buy stuff from china" attitude. just plain, simple, and to the point without the usual finger pointing, us vs. them, garbage. in other words, it was done tastefully.
so your saying she was a passive aggressive hippy bitch.
 

dwaugh

Turbo Monkey
May 23, 2002
1,816
0
Bellingham, Washington ~ U.S.A.
And yea... not too stoked about the plane rides but I figure if the plane is going to make the flight anyways, and I need to go where it's flying then I can rationalize that.
...but what if that's what everyone is thinking? I know it isn't, but every bit of less use/demand counts, I believe.
 

SkaredShtles

I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!
Sep 21, 2003
51,257
4,423
In a van.... down by the river
Awesome. I gave up TV a while ago for a lot of reasons. I'm studying all organic growing methods, but I'm focused on permaculture. I just wish I had more available land; I have a little bit of land to work with but not much at all. If I had the land to grow a majority of my own food, I would,
My GOD... It's 1971 all over again! :p



<snip> Personally, I've pretty much made up my mind that I'll never fly again.
How old are you again? :busted:
 
Feb 13, 2002
1,079
7
Seattle, WA
i hope her video camera was free of toxins.
dude, don't be an @$$.

Nobody is asking anybody to crawl back into caves. The point is to do what you can.

For example, if you buy a handle of vodka instead of two fifths of vodka, it's less packaging for the same amount of vodka! Everybody wins.

It's about taking a good look at your life and trimming off some fat. You'll find that life is much better lean.

I ain't no Thoreau, but his general thesis is that you have to work a **** job to earn money for stuff. If you adopt a live that requires less stuff you get more life to spend on things you like. Stuff = money = life. Find a balance that works for you.
 

boostindoubles

Nacho Libre
Mar 16, 2004
4,480
2,081
Yakistan
Does growing my own food and looking out for the health of the Earth make me a crazy liberal hippy?

I just think it makes the most sense. We live on this place called Earth, although it seems infinitely big, it is actually quite small and everything that happens here is interlaced. I prefer to think that I am bettering this planet for future generations than spending my time trying to get my hands on the newest car, tv, computer, or clothing style.

Not to mention the quality of food in grocery stores and restaurants. I can't even bring myself to buy apples and carrots anymore. They taste like **** compared to what I pull out of the garden
It seems like its unpopular and ostracizing to think in terms of the health of the Earth instead of my wallet. It doesn't make any sense to me.
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
29,191
2,895
Does growing my own food and looking out for the health of the Earth make me a crazy liberal hippy?

I just think it makes the most sense. We live on this place called Earth, although it seems infinitely big, it is actually quite small and everything that happens here is interlaced. I prefer to think that I am bettering this planet for future generations than spending my time trying to get my hands on the newest car, tv, computer, or clothing style.

Not to mention the quality of food in grocery stores and restaurants. I can't even bring myself to buy apples and carrots anymore. They taste like **** compared to what I pull out of the garden
It seems like its unpopular and ostracizing to think in terms of the health of the Earth instead of my wallet. It doesn't make any sense to me.
it all depends on your crowd. come to the west side of the mountains and you'd fit in just fine.
 

dwaugh

Turbo Monkey
May 23, 2002
1,816
0
Bellingham, Washington ~ U.S.A.
Not only do the other carrots and apples, and all the rest, taste like nothing in comparison to organic, home grown ones, but they have less nutritional value too, I believe (based on all the places that I've read that, and I certainly believe it).

On a somewhat related topic to this thread, I just learned that Whatcom county just started a Transition initiative! (17th in the country and 146th in the world) I can't wait to be involved once things start (it was formed last week).