Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

I'm not a "Consumer" I'm a Citizen!

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:46 AM
Original message
I'm not a "Consumer" I'm a Citizen!
So damn sick and tired about hearing of the "consumer". I'm not a mindless consumer of cheap plastic crap. I am a person who has needs and wants, and I generally succeed at handling my needs before I even consider handling my wants.

But even if I was manipulated, cajoled, and castigated into giving into my "need" for a new blender, I would still be a human being and a citizen. The way that the media and these wall street douchenozzles bandy the word "consumer" and use it to generally apply to any person who ever buys anything (IE all of us) completely disgusts me. It reduces all of us to market forces and resources to be bought and sold, and to be held in little more respect and with little more consideration than that which is granted to livestock, or ore bearing rocks.

Fuck you and your "consumer" label. I will consume only what I absolutely need to consume in order to survive and maintain a simplistic level of entertainment. I will no longer take out any loans, buy anything that I won't use at least once a week, or generally contribute to the global death spiral that our modern form of capitalism represents.

Fuck you Overlords! Call me a fucking prole!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
Libertas1776 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:47 AM
Response to Original message
1. K&R !
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:49 AM
Response to Original message
2. "It reduces all of us to market forces and resources to be bought and sold"
Edited on Thu Sep-17-09 01:50 AM by armyowalgreens
Welcome to capitalism. Philosophers have been discussing this consequence for over 100 years.


""The Immense Mechanism, set up by man to produce objects for his use, transforms man himself into an object used by the same mechanism of production and consumption.

But man has not ceased to be man. He resists this fate anxiously, desperately, courageously. He asks the question, for what? And he realizes that there is no answer. He becomes aware of the emptiness which is covered by the continuous movement ahead and the production of means for ends which becomes means again without an ultimate end. Without knowing what has happened to him, he feels that he has lost the meaning of life, the dimension of depth.

Out of this awareness the religious question arises and religious answers are received or rejected"

-Paul Tillich
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:53 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. That quote is brilliant, poignant and all too true
My wife and I struggle with these questions (and their unpleasant answers) daily. I will now look up Paul tillich... thank you!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:59 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. You're very welcome. I first read him last year in my honors philosophy class.
My professor was a marxist and spent a large amount of class discussing materials criticizing capitalism.

Tillich is a christian philosopher. But he discusses religion from a very objective perspective. I was very surprised.

That quote spoke to me, so I saved it. If I find the reading that I got it from, I'll let you know.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:16 AM
Response to Reply #6
11. I would appreciate that. I did a brief search and turned up a lot of evangelism
But I'd be happy to read the not so missionary stuff :thumbsup:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:47 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. "The Essential Tillich"...
Edited on Thu Sep-17-09 02:48 AM by armyowalgreens
Chapter 1 "The Lost Dimension in Religion"

Bottom of page 5
http://books.google.com/books?id=NhsrRclfFbYC&dq=the+es...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 09:24 PM
Response to Reply #13
29. Cool thanks. Will read some of it when I pick the wife up from class n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:56 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. Mmm like the quote... categorically reject any philosophy which pushes the religion as the answer
Circular reasoning isn't the answer for anything. Though I have nothing against cherishing a question :D Thanks for the quote though!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Mind_your_head Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:49 AM
Response to Original message
3. Pleased to know you fellow citizen. I'm a citizen too!
:-)

K & R
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
optimal-tomato Donating Member (243 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 01:59 AM
Response to Original message
7. I am not a "consumer"...
I am not a consumer of health care, I am a patient.
I am not a consumer of education, I am a student.
I am not a consumer of employment, I am an employee.
I am not a consumer of media, I am a reader/viewer.
I am not a consumer of democracy, I am a citizen.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:15 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. HELL YES! +1
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BlooInBloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:06 AM
Response to Original message
8. Is there any particular reason you can't be both? And many other things as well?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:14 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Yes. Each is meant to define the purpose and worth of a person
A consumer is nothing more than a mindless resource to be exhausted and discarded. A citizen is a free-thinking, free willed individual with rights and the power to tell wall street to go collectively roger itself.

There's a big difference. Why can't these money grubbing versace covered twits say things like "People aren't buying as much plastic crap"? Instead they talk about how "the consumer is spooked". "The consumer needs to be manipulated in just such a way to milk the consumer more". "The laborer is suffering... but fuck him what do we do about the consumer?". "The uninsured are draining our coffers.. how do we get them to die faster?" etc.

I don't want to be part of their fucking equation. There is really only one equation: "The corporate pig fuckers are destroying America and the planet with their greed and heartless pursuit of short term profits."
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
BlooInBloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:20 AM
Response to Reply #9
12. (shrug) I'm many things. Must be tough for you, being only one...
Edited on Thu Sep-17-09 02:28 AM by BlooInBloo
I'm a friend, a mathematician, a programmer, a basketball player, a bacon lover, and yes, both a consumer and a citizen.

And many, many other things besides.

I wish you whatever joy a truly one-dimensional person can find.


EDIT: And *my* value comes from the *totality* of things that I am. Not any single one of them.

As some bright song writer once wrote in this vein: I am large, I contain multitudes.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #12
31. To your EDIT I completely agree
And I partially agree with the rest of your post... though I fear that I have not communicated very well.

My point is exactly that your value comes form the totality of things that you are. By reducing us all to single variables of "Consumer", "Liberal", etc "they" are empowered to treat us and consider us as less than human. Well perhaps it is human nature to divide and name and manipulate, etc... but I reject the label of "consumer" and insist instead on a label of "Citizen" because Citizens are defined by their rights and obligations, by their opinions and resolves regarding life and society as a whole not simply by their ability to benefit our corporate overlords through the consumption of useless crap.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 05:11 AM
Response to Original message
14. A brief word from Daniel Kemmis, former mayor of Missoula, Montana
Customer and consumer are not the only words being used to change the nature of citizenship. The word taxpayer now regularly holds the place which in a true democracy would be occupied by citizen. Taxpayers bear a dual relationship to government, neither half of which has anything at all to do with democracy. Taxpayers pay tribute to the government and they receive services from it. So does every subject of a totalitarian regime. What taxpayers do not do, and what people who call themselves taxpayers have long since stopped even imagining themselves doing, is governing.

Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 09:36 PM
Response to Reply #14
32. Wow great quote and very true. Thanks!
It is a stated and assumed fact in Judaism that to name a thing is to try to exert control over it. I know that Judaism didn't invent this.. it's been a part of the human psyche since we climbed from the ooze. But it is the damn truth.

However, when you call a thing a powerful name like Citizen, you are reinforcing the power inherent in the shared concept of the word. Words really are magical.

Consumers are just meat.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Betty Karlson Donating Member (902 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 05:32 AM
Response to Original message
15. While not agreeing with your choice of (swear)words,
I very much commend you for the thought you express. The notion that good citizens are good consumers is as ludicrous as the idea that good government equals economic growth. Both thoughts are reductionist, and therefore wrong.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
The2ndWheel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 05:55 AM
Response to Original message
16. A cog in the machine
Molded and standardized by the state, for its benefit, to both survive and grow, and worn down by the corporation, for its benefit, to both survive and grow.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
fasttense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 06:26 AM
Response to Original message
17. Consumer is a nice way of calling you trade bait. n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
scarletwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 06:39 AM
Response to Original message
18. Huzzah! You said it!
Edited on Thu Sep-17-09 06:40 AM by scarletwoman
"It reduces all of us to market forces and resources to be bought and sold, and to be held in little more respect and with little more consideration than that which is granted to livestock, or ore bearing rocks."

Damn straight. Livestock, herd animals -- that's all we are to the Oligarchs. And electoral politics is the game the Overlords play to see who can corral the biggest herd.

sw
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
IDemo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 07:20 AM
Response to Original message
19. Add to that: Employees = "Resources"
"We're going to add another resource to the team". Makes it sound as if the boss is buying an oil well.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 08:31 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. "Human Resources" is one of the most disgusting phrases in the English Language.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 08:28 AM
Response to Original message
20. I'm not a "consumer", I'm a HUMAN BEING.
They can take their cheap crap and shove it up their rear ends!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
bdamomma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 08:33 AM
Response to Original message
22. there should a bumper sticker saying that.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 08:37 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. As one drives to a shopping mall in the newer car they just bought.

:)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Javaman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:00 AM
Response to Original message
24. We are called consumers for a reason...
(I wrote this a while back)

Javaman (1000+ posts) Fri Nov-17-06 05:09 PM
Response to Original message

110. We are called consumers for a reason...

since post WWII a whole new breed of ad exec was born.

We are all told to strive for the "american dream".

There never was such a thing.

Once upon a time, the dream to live for in this country was to live free.

Now we are told to buy everything we can get our hands on in hopes that one day before we go on a killing spree that we attain that "american dream" of owning more and more stuff. (that is before we realize that material posessions really don't give you any real happiness)

And just like moron* said, "See in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda."

And that my friends is what we as a nation have been feeding on these last 60 years.

Buy why, you ask? At the close of WWII, it was noticed by the U.S. Government, the republican red scare nut jobs and money grubbing capitalists, that there was a lot of money to be made on fear.

So after years of war and depression, people were ripe for a new world and a life of ease... or at least that's what we were told.

So for the next umpteen years (decades), it was pounded into us as part of the cold war brainwashing our government did to us. "Strive for the American dream! We are better than the soviets! we consume more because we make more!" (viscous circular logic)

After the cold war ended there was a very brief period of time (like about 3 hours) where the american public actually said, "Hey, why do I have to buy this crap? The soviets are old news..." but then in steps bush the first to scare the crap out of us by invading saddam (the evil mean guy du jour), thus giving us someone new to hate and materialistically out do.

So here we are, wondering again, why do we buy shit we don't need. In a nut shell, to make other people rich and us perpetually broke and/or deeply in debt.

There is the 50 cent answer.

Now stop buying crap you think you need!!!

Sigh


UPDATE: 9/17/09
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

"Declassified Study" - How the Soviet Menace Was Hyped-"Constant Exaggeration" (Sound Familiar?)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Initech Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:40 AM
Response to Original message
25. Damn straight!!!!!!!!!!!!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
26. One of the arguments used to support the Drug War is that use harms productivity
I've always wondered, Who said I owe anybody my productivity? :shrug:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
scarletwoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 06:52 PM
Response to Original message
27. *kick* for a great post! (nt)
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Greyhound Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 08:14 PM
Response to Original message
28. We need to remember. n/t
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
HCE SuiGeneris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 09:26 PM
Response to Original message
30. What is your problem?
Serfs have no place at the table. Begone, disruptor!

:sarcasm: JIC
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:04 PM
Response to Original message
33. Okay but in economic models you're a consumer, a producer, or both
"Citizen" doesn't tell us anything in economics and most financial reporting is basically taking economic models and dumbing them down so that lay people can understand them.

In the proper context I see no problem with referring to people as consumers.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 01:12 AM
Response to Reply #33
37. That's the problem - economic modeling reduces us all to cogs
whose sole purpose is either to produce things cheaply or consume those things at the most lucrative rate possible. There is no dignity, no higher purpose, no ethical considerations, no beauty, no self-defined purpose in life, etc. Both the producer and the consumer get screwed while the middle men live high on the hog and sell their grand equation to the rest of us with the pure and simple disgusting heartless logic of economics.

I am not a variable in an equation... I'm a person. Fuck economics.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Hippo_Tron Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 04:31 PM
Response to Reply #37
39. Economics is vital to understanding certain aspects of human behavior
Edited on Fri Sep-18-09 04:33 PM by Hippo_Tron
And the best way to understand this kind of behavior (at least that people have come up with) is to put everything into mathematical equations. Of course, I would argue that one is not a good economist if they are simply looking at the numbers that come out of the equations.

For example, some might look like a figure like say "10% unemployment" and think of it as just a number. I would look at such a number and think about what ramifications unemployment has not only on the people who are unemployed but for all of society. But in order to think about the magnitude of the effects, you need to have numbers like "10% unemployment".

I should add that I was wrong before when I said that "citizen" doesn't tell us anything in economic modeling. It doesn't tell us anything in these particular economic models. But it certainly could tell us something in, for example, an economic model about voter behavior.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
JMMendez1989 Donating Member (27 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:04 PM
Response to Original message
34. Capitalism
Edited on Thu Sep-17-09 11:07 PM by JMMendez1989
If you want to see REAL Capitalism, look at President Theodore Roosevelt, he is a perfect example. I also point to the NFL. While it is a big corporate organization. Pete Rozelle, the late commissioner, actually followed a very progressive agenda, with sharing of revenues, expanding, and salary caps to create competition. THATS Capitalism.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Flabbergasted Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:44 PM
Response to Original message
35. It's a disgusting label. nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Indenturedebtor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 01:16 AM
Response to Reply #35
38. Yeah it makes me feel like some giant grub
locked in a cellar that consumes garbage and craps golden eggs for rich people who kick me and spit in my face when I'm not consuming and crapping fast enough.

I am so sick of all of their crap.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
flamingdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 12:43 AM
Response to Original message
36. Thanks. You're right the word consumer is crap, citizen sounds powerful nt
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
derby378 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 04:33 PM
Response to Original message
40. I like the way you think...
...and I've been voicing some similar views, myself. :hi:
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Fri Apr 18th 2014, 09:11 AM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC