buy nothing day

Occasionally, when I’m not blogging meaningless rubbish about boys, punk rock or tv shows I say something important. This is one of those days. Tomorrow is Buy Nothing Day. (I’ll copy and paste the press release under this incase you’re unaware of the cultural phenomenon.)
I’m really making an effort to stick to this, this year, even though it’s payday tomorrow. If there’s one thing that has become more apparent in 2008 than any other year it’s that as a global (western, anyways) society, we’re fucked. We live way beyond our means, it makes us miserable, destroys the planet and is on the brink of destroying the (haha) sustainable capitalist world in which we live. Buying more shit you don’t need doesn’t make anything better. I’m as guilty as this as anyone else, just cos I’m buying books and magazines and organic nonsense, it doesn’t mean I need it.
Sometimes I sit in my room and look at all the junk I’ve amassed (and I do regular culls) and it kind of grosses me out. I know it’s the way we were all raised, but seriously. Who are we kidding.
Rant over.


Now in its 17th year, Buy Nothing Day is celebrated every November by environmentalists, social activists and concerned citizens in over 65 countries around the world. Over the years, Buy Nothing Day (followed by Buy Nothing Christmas) has exploded into a global movement, inspiring the world’s citizens to live more simply and buy a whole lot less.

Designed to coincide with Black Friday (which this year falls on Friday, November 28) in the United States, and the unofficial start of the international holiday shopping season (Saturday, November 29), the festival takes many shapes, from relaxed family outings, to free, non-commercial street parties, to politically charged public protests, credit-card cut-ups and pranks and shenanigans of all kinds. Anyone can take part provided they spend a day without spending.

Featured by such media giants as CNN, USA Today, MSNBC, Wired, the BBC, The Age and the CBC, Buy Nothing Day has gained momentum in recent years as the climate crisis has driven people to seek out greener alternatives to unrestrained consumption.

This year, Buy Nothing Day organizers are confronting the economic meltdown head-on – asking citizens, policy makers and pundits to examine our economic crisis.

“If you dig a little past the surface you’ll see that this financial meltdown is not about liquidity, toxic derivatives or unregulated markets, it’s really about culture,” says the co-founder of Adbusters Media Foundation, Kalle Lasn. “It’s our culture of excess and meaningless consumption — the glorified spending and borrowing of the past decade that’s at the root of the crisis we now find ourselves in.”

Economic meltdown, together with the ecological crisis of climate change could be the beginning of a major global cultural shift — the dawn of a new age: the age of Post-Materialism.

“A simpler, pared-down lifestyle – one in which we’re not drowning in debt – may well be the answer to this crisis we’re in,” says Lasn. “Living within our means will also make us happier and healthier than we’ve been in years.”

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