Re: BUY NOTHING DAY

Aaron (aaron@burn.ucsd.edu)
Tue, 12 Nov 1996 02:57:01 -0700


I am forwarding, together with my criticism, an item which was posted to
the list <seac+announce@ecosys.drdr.virginia.edu>.

>Date: Mon, 11 Nov 1996 10:24:06 -0500 (EST)
>From: Barbara Schaefer <B.Schaefer@facilities.utoronto.ca>
>To: Multiple recipients of list <seac+announce@ecosys.drdr.virginia.edu>
>Subject: BUY NOTHING DAY
>
>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>In the interest of making a point about the need to reduce the
>rampant consumerism in the Western World, please pass the word:
>
> Planetary BUY NOTHING DAY
>
> November 29, 1996
>
> A 24 hour moratorium on consumer spending
>
> PARTICIPATE BY NOT PARTICIPATING!
>
>For more information call 1-800-663-1243 or view the uncommercial at:
>http://www.adbusters.org/adbusters/pop/buynothingday.html
>
>***************************************
>Barbara Schaefer, Recycling Coordinator
>University of Toronto
>6th floor, 215 Huron Street
>Toronto, Ont. M5S 1A1 CANADA
>phone (416) 978-7080 "The battle for Nature
>fax (416) 971-2994 is a battle against
>e-mail b.schaefer@facilities.utoronto.ca ourselves."
>*****************************************
>-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sorry folks, but this BUY NOTHING DAY, and the guilt-tripping that's a key
part of it, will do nothing to diminish the environmental destruction
caused by the capitalist system!

Getting a few people, or even a few million people (unlikely!), to not shop
for one day, even if it is traditionally the first day of Christmas
shopping, will not even significantly change the total consumption of those
few people. They'll probably buy more in the days before and afterwards to
make up for it.

What's needed is an attack, now mainly ideological, later physical, on the
socio-economic system that generates wasteful production/consumption at the
same time it deprives more and more people of the levels of consumption
necessary for survival. Instead of trying to make working-class people feel
guilty about wasteful and self-destructive behavior patterns that are
virtually forced on them by the way society is organized, how about
mobilizing these people against the persons, institutions and social
relations that are screwing them and the environment?

To the extent that working people are manipulated, rather than coerced,
into playing these eco-destructive and self-destructive roles, they should
be encouraged to feel like victims of a con game, rather than like
criminals. I suggest the following message on buttons, picket signs, etc.
during the Christmas shopping season:

You Work. You Spend. They Profit.
Merry Christmas to the Bosses!

I don't have an entire program worked out for such a campaign. The ideas of
others along these lines will be appreciated and passed along.

--Aaron "The battle for Nature is
--aaron@burn.ucsd.edu a battle against our oppressors."

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