Tuesday, October 14, 2008

You. Happier?

Here’s a thought I’ve been ruminating lately. With the mortgage crisis front and center in all the news and talk, it makes me wonder if the average person has any idea why it came about?

Most are able to blame Wall Street fat cats, and the Republicans and Democrats are trading shots at each other, contending that their opponent is somehow the culprit, but what about the consumer? Where does the consumer fit into the picture?

Everyday I get a raft of credit card applications in the mail, in effect begging me to apply for their card and receive their low interest rate or their unbeatable balance transfer offer. And everyday I run them through the shredder. And everyday I see why it was so easy for us to get into this current financial quagmire.

Fault the lender for being so tempting, but also fault the borrower for not being wiser. The Serpent made the offer of the apple, but Adam and Eve went against their instructions and took the first bite. Both got punished. If I am living beyond my means, regardless if the government or my neighbor can’t do so, that still doesn’t make it right.

The latest ad campaign from Best Buy includes a slogan that reads, “You. Happier.” I am teaching my daughter to mock things like this. How stupid does Best Buy think I am, that they believe that me buying a stupid flat panel TV is going to have any bearing on me being happier? What do they take me for?

Well I guess they take me for the average American, who is in consumptive debt up to their eyeballs, who doesn’t have the wherewithal to recognize a lie from a good deal.

I wonder if we as a consumptive society will every get fed up to the point that advertising strategies like Best Buy will actually backfire and have a negative effect on their sales? Will we ever come to our senses long enough to feel offended by a statement, “You. Happier?”

And once we get through this mortgage mess, will we really ever learn a lesson from it?

Something tells me to not hold my breath.

1 comment:

Kansas Bob said...

I think that there are reasons for the current financial slavery. Here's hoping that people will eventually wake up.