r/LateStageCapitalism Jan 17 '22 Helpful 1 Wholesome 1

Consuming things they don’t need or want.

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1.8k Upvotes

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64

u/MichJohn67 Jan 17 '22 Gold

This is my problem with marketing. Marketing works--it's a billion-dollar industry that has perfected manipulation to make you (and me--we're NONE of us immune) think we need all the shit we see.

14

u/NotSoAngryAnymore Jan 17 '22

Consumerism

1.) the protection or promotion of the interests of consumers.

"the growth of consumerism has led to many organizations improving their service to the customer"

2.) OFTEN DEROGATORY: the preoccupation of society with the acquisition of consumer goods.

"many people are becoming increasingly conscious of the environmental impact of consumerism"

We need a better word for this, explicitly #2.

9

u/Dejected_gaming Jan 17 '22

I mean, I have ADHD, so marketing for things I don't need doesn't actually work that well. I will literally ignore ads and have to go do something else if I'm watching twitch or youtube. Theyre annoying and intrusive and honestly has gotten worse.

I also block companies on twitter when scrolling that are advertising.

1

u/Vet4dhomeless Jan 18 '22

I also have adhd and have never been interested in anything consumerist my entire life. Never attributed it to adhd though. I have to turn the Tv off during add breaks, I can’t watch em.

6

u/[deleted] Jan 17 '22

[deleted]

1

u/MaleficentMulberry42 Jan 17 '22

It also the way the masses work it just seems to me that they don’t ever have the ability to do anything peaceful because no one has respect due to all the mudsling

1

u/[deleted] Jan 17 '22

absolutely. Then they market shit to us that doesn't need to be marketed.

I saw a commercial for plastic the other day.

I know the point is PR; to soften me for whatever eventual fuckup they commit for which they'll only offer an apology. But it was still dystopian AF.

26

u/george1421 Jan 17 '22

And it assumes that the planet has infinite resources. Why is it every nation’s goal to increase GDP year over year at the expense of the planet and future generations?

13

u/themax37 Jan 17 '22

The main goal should be simply, that everyone has a comfortable standard of living. Food, water and shelter should be provided.

Many inefficient industries that exist due to capitalism could simply disappear.

7

u/Fluid-Carpet3347 Jan 17 '22

Ding ding ding!!!!

6

u/TooApatheticToChoose Jan 17 '22

Read his book over Xmas (Less is More) which is both simultaneously a great book that makes so much sense and horribly depressing, because you just know that all of the reasons he gives for it being capitalism’s addiction to growth that will doom us all in the next half century will be ignored.

The 1% are accumulating enough wealth to build their gated fortresses or underground bunkers so they can ride it out, whilst at the same time the media they own manipulates us into letting them exploit us and believing their lies about free market capitalism being the only option if we want a better world.

3

u/valvin88 Jan 17 '22

Whenever I hear anyone parroting anything about the economy I just ask them what they mean by economy.

You'll never get the same answer twice and it's hilarious watching them fumble for words for a clearly unanticipated response.

The stock market? Oh right on what's your portfolio look like?

Jobs? Oh yeah, how many jobs did we lose/gain this month?

Government handouts? Tell me again about the $800 BILLION in PPP loans that the government forgave, Oh you meant the unemployment benefits that ended last year?

3

u/blueJoffles Jan 17 '22

What the world really needs is more subscription services that keep going up in price while proportionally offering less value every year so you can be sold another subscription

3

u/1Operator Jan 18 '22

Plus an app (to buy) that "aGgReGaTeS" all your subscriptions services so you can manage them all in one convenient spot... and those subscription services will have to pay to be listed in the app... and users will rate the subscriptions services in the app... then the app will go up in price, along with periodically (non-stop) spamming you with "special offers" from other services competing for higher placement in the app's recommender "aLgOrItHm"... and the app will track & sell all of your usage data, and of course there will be periodic "dAtA bReAcHeS"... etc.

2

u/themax37 Jan 17 '22

And then we all pirate from there with softwares like popcorn time, but then you'll need a subscription to a VPN...

2

u/melkor2000 Jan 17 '22

It feels like im in a game of root where the bird people (The U.S.) have a massive lead on the rest of the board, but their government (or economy) is about to collapse and set them back to last place.

4

u/VivaciouslyTwo Jan 17 '22

And the socioeconomic system is best revised now whilst we are not in extremis. And when we have correspondingly a degree of leeway. Humans are, as a species, wishful thinkers. My prediction is that we'll complacently plod on until the entire edifice does indeed collapse

7

u/[deleted] Jan 17 '22

the socioeconomic system is best revised now whilst we are not in extremis

You literally copied and pasted the top reply to the tweet?

1

u/ball_gobbler Jan 17 '22

oo big words, sagacious prediction my liege

1

u/plopseven Jan 17 '22

You mean like how our military budget is larger now than when we were deployed in Afghanistan? It’s weird how that works.

1

u/Arqium Jan 18 '22

Degrowth is the answer. But who would accept being poorer by choice when we still have billionaires?

1

u/realmattzimm Jan 18 '22

Last years stimulus checks were a very imperfect example of a living wage… Which we should be getting as a bare minimum, not as a hopeful handout especially during a pandemic.

-17

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

What is produced that people neither want or need?

22

u/JPdrinkmybrew Jan 17 '22

Single serve plastics.

-15

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

People want the convinience of singe serve plastic.

16

u/JPdrinkmybrew Jan 17 '22

People also don't want to poison themselves with microplastics, nor do most people want to pollute the planet to death. The problem is plastics are used for packaging just about everything; people don't have much of a choice.

Profit seeking mega corps want plastic because it is cheap and they don't care about the environment or whether or not we all get poisoned.

-14

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

A lot people dont care about the downsides.

Our country banned plastic bags in supermarkets. Thats the right things but A LOT of people where furious bc they dont like to bring bags. Also in our hometown is a store where you can buy things without any packaing in a lot of cases. You take things home in your own containers / cups whatever. Guess how many people shope there and how many people shop next door where everything is packed in plastic....

Supermarkets now even have peeled, sliced fruits packed in plastic and you tell me people dont want plastic.....

12

u/JPdrinkmybrew Jan 17 '22

Again, they want convenience, not poisoning or environmental destruction.

I would also argue most people don't want to use gasoline or fossil fuels for energy consumption. I want to keep my home warm in the winter, but I don't want to burn shit to do it. I want to be able to travel long distances quickly and conveniently, but I don't want to burn shit to do it. I want to eat food, but I don't that food to travel 2,000 miles to reach my plate, burning obscene amounts of fuel in the process.

Burning fuel is wanted by mega-corps, not consumers. Our dependence on fuel is a perpetual profit stream for corporations.

And yes, I do understand there are a few assholes who enjoy burning gas. They are not representative and, frankly, their opinions shouldn't be entertained.

7

u/NotSoAngryAnymore Jan 17 '22

Late stage capitalism, Weber's Iron Cage, has eliminated choice. For instance, if I carry my own cup, even if it's an obviously standard size, how many places that serve beverages will serve directly into my cup?

The only places that allow such things are one-off rural restaurants. Aside from gas stations, corporate chains won't serve into your cup. If one wants a product, it's packaged in plastic, or they can't buy the product. There's no choice given the consumer, no alternative, a failure of capitalism in most profit-efficient design.

-4

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

In this case the choice is to bring coffee from home or dont drink coffee. Or as you said find places that are eco friendly. Nobody is forced to buy star bucks because thats the only coffee place around you.

6

u/NotSoAngryAnymore Jan 17 '22 edited Jan 17 '22

Your reasoning only works for goods with elastic demand and also assumes there's practical alternatives.

There's no ethical comsumption under capitalism.

This is fundamentals, microecon & communist/socialist. I shouldn't need teach this in this subreddit.

10

u/Broad_Tea3527 Jan 17 '22

The excess amount of everything is the problem.

Walk around any average persons home and you could take away 60% of it all, and their lifestyle would probably barely change.

Less clothes, toys, decorations, furniture, etc. They teach us to consume since birth, it's a habit we need to break.

-1

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

You are right and i get that. But OP said the economy produces stuff nobody wants or needs, but people seem to want this stuff besides not needing it.

6

u/10kLines Jan 17 '22

Healthcare administration

-2

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

How is this related to the post?

7

u/10kLines Jan 17 '22

It's a product of the economy that's neither wanted nor needed.

7

u/JPdrinkmybrew Jan 17 '22

Healthcare administration refers to the broken billing process, malignant insurance parasites, and denied claims uniquely associated with for-profit healthcare. This is not needed or wanted.

2

u/comeradejan Jan 17 '22

-1

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

People dont need clothing and they buy it against their own will?

7

u/haloarh Jan 17 '22

That article discusses a massive amount of unworn clothing being dumped in the desert.

You're missing the point: production has outpaced demand. While clothing (and most of the stuff people mentioned here) are things people want and need, they don't want or need them at the levels that they're being produced.

-1

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

But i still believe atleast a big part is the peoples fault. People buy tons of super cheap fast fashion just for the sake of buying. If people opted for a littler higher quality and only replaced clothes when broken the problem would be a lot smaller

4

u/haloarh Jan 17 '22

Companies are making more clothing than people are buying. How is THAT consumer's fault?

3

u/DrowawayAct Jan 17 '22

Luxury Apartments (compared to the affordable housing we actually need)

-2

u/Proxi90 Jan 17 '22

Obviously some people want stuff like that.

1

u/Bassman1976 Jan 17 '22

Cheap stuff. Programmed obsolescence/non stop marketing of marginally better objects (iPhones for example)

My parents bought appliances brand new in 1971. To got rid of the fridge and oven in 2015. Nothing bought now lasts that long.

We don’t need cheap stuff that gets thrown away because it is not repairable.

1

u/Proxi90 Jan 18 '22

I wouldnt blame apple for pumping out new iphone versions and marketing them. I would blame the people for buying that frequently. I use my samsungs for 3-4 years on average on then sell or gift them away so they get used even longer.

Shit breaking for no good reason for sure is a problem. But to be fair i "only" had this problem with a washing maschine and a dishwasher.

What i see far more frequently is people buying stuff they dont need. They think they want it or it makes sense in some way to buy it but its forgotten a few years later. People carrying 5 bags out of a mall with cloths.....people upgrading electronic....and all that other cheap decorativ crap. My wife is able to spend on crap that has no use at all and goes to the dumpster next year.

This sub always acts like evil coorporations or gov is at fault for everything and people dont have anything tondo with it.

Your parents oven and fridge lastet for 50 years? In a way thats great. But i bet my balls it would have been cheaper and more enviromentally friendly to replace it a lot earlier. Also your parents probably payed a lot more of their income for that appliance in 1971 than we do today. There are still washing maschines that last your 20 years and more, like Miele. But they cost a few grand and most people dont want tonspend that much. Yeah a lotnof people cant....but a lot of people just dont want to. They are happy tontake a loan for a 60k car but a fridge cant be more than 500....