Honors English 101
21 October 2012
As countries continue to grow larger in population, the need for goods will always be there in an increasingly fashion, no matter the financial state of a country or person. The disease becoming known world wide as consumption is sweeping our minds up one by one. Our consumption of goods obviously is a function of our culture. Consumption has both positive and negative consequences, is a big factor in the development of credit card debt, and provides advertisers with new ideas to continually fuel the consumption rage. Consumption has created many consequences in society, both positive and negative. Some positive consequences of this are self evident in appearance, creating self-confidence in yourself that you couldn’t achieve before through things such as clothes, and accessories to go with our life styles. New things can change a person’s life in an instant from the moment when they see what they want in an advertisement or a store that they are shopping in. I can definitely connect with this, as I am a big, want shopper. I look for great new things that will look great and make my self-esteem grow. People look at want shopping in negative ways too much because to kids living in poverty a new pair of shoes they have always wanted is a sense of happiness that no one can take away from them. Another positive view of consumption is bringing people together as in specific groups that share a common like such as, Pinterest, which allows people to post items and wants on boards for others to view and discuss. Websites like these are becoming more and more popular because it gives you the ability to post wants to a viewable board without having to physically shop for things and print out pictures to look through. Some negative consequences of consumption are more evident probably than the positive ones. Negative consumption is buying wants for the wrong reason such as things that you don’t like, but you buy them to fit in with the group of people that you want to be associated with. Negative consumption is also buying with no intent to wear or use more than once. Many people buy too many things that don’t ever get opened or used and throw into trash after a while, so it gets sent to a landfill to take up space while some families pray for opportunities to have items such as food. The production, processing, and consumption, requires the extraction and use of natural resources (wood, ore, fossil fuels, and water), it also requires the creation of factories and factory complexes whose operation creates toxic byproducts, creating pollutants and waste. Other examples are smoking in public places; the consumer is creating negative externalities, in the form of passive smoking for non-smokers. Most of the time people realize the negative consequences too late and they become in debt and then look for others to help bail them out. The classic family story of an aunt falling into debt and asking her brothers and sisters for help making payments that she cant make because of her decision making. Consumption has lead to ideas of easier and more efficient ways to obtain goods and wants. One of those ideas has become one of the most controversial items ever invented, the credit card. Credit cards do have many positive and negatives consequences as well. Credit cards have the ability to buy items on items without always having to carry cash around with you to get everything. Obtaining a credit card is very easy and is sent in mail to customers all the time to send up for a new interest rate or a card that gives you certain rewards for using that card. Despite the name, credit cards are in fact loans, requiring repayment with interest. People that keep up on their credit card payments like credit cards because they are easy to use and they give you more of a self security as you don’t have to carry around amounts of cash or always use ATM’s to get more.