Refuse!, or There's enough stuff in Circulation for ALL



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The Best Thing You Can Do Is Not Buy More Stuff.
‘Secondhand’ Expert

We have been convinced by smooth-talkers (AKA marketers, advertisers) that the Market offers solutions to our problems, and we only need to buy for them to manifest. These marketers have been bombarding us with advertisements of all sorts and colors that we could almost excuse ourselves for falling into their pitches. We acquire these solutions with either our money or time. It’s likely both, since Capitalism seems to conjure its own ‘physics’ where money and time are related, inseparable even, like spacetime in actual physics.

(A third contender rises to be the newest currency: data. But that’s for a different post.)

This was not always the case. The Silent Generation, in order to survive the world wars, were forced to make resources last. And since they had little to no money to spend on buying things, they instead developed the practical skills needed to survive the rough times. Ask your grandparents, and they will tell you countless stories of frugality, of repairing your own stuff, of borrowing from others.

It’s time to refuse new stuff, make do with what’s already in circulation, and learn to do without. The best time would have been years ago, but now is as good as any.

It’s time to think really hard before opting to buy something new that you might instead be able to procure second-hand, or even better, do yourself if you know how.

Do you really need that organizer from Muji, or will old empty tin cans and some creativity do?

This shift in consumption should reduce demand to manufacture and produce stuff, which consequently would be good for the environment.

Of course, there are some things that you really have to buy brand new, such as batteries and personal items like toothbrushes and underwear.

But do you really have to, though? Instead of using anything battery- or electricity-operated, is it possible to do it manually? Instead of plastic toothbrushes, why not opt for bamboo-made ones, or better yet, teeth-cleaning twigs? Instead of buying underwear, why not look into making your own, or if you can, go without it?

Choices like these can be pretty radical, I know, but we need to be radical with our choices if we are to save the environment.

If you must buy new things, see to it that you invest in quality. Also, look around and check if you can obtain it locally. Expect it to be more expensive. You’ll be buying it for life anyway, so you can start refusing future purchases. TNU



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