Sunday, February 17, 2008

The Story of Stuff

I have watched two videos lately that have revealed to me that I've been living in a lot of ignorance with some of the choices I've been making in regard to the things I buy and the things I use. The first was a video from TED by James Howard Kunstler's, The Death of Suburbia where he tells about civic space and how we've depleted our communities of the ability to sustain a local culture. Jordon Cooper linked to it and it was fascinating. (be forewarned that the presentation is rife with swearing). He ends the presentation at TED with a challenge that hasn't let me go. "Please stop referring to yourselves as consumers, citizens have responsibilities."

This has given me much to think about and folds into this next video from Free Range Studios called "The Story of Stuff" - it is so important and interesting. It has filled in the gaps for me of the ignorance I live with every day.

Here's the way the website describes it:
The Story of Stuff - From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It'll teach you something, it'll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever.

How 'bout you - do you want to be a citizen or a consumer? I'm really giving my consumptive ways a thorough going over.

Hat tip to Melvin Bray at Useful Perhaps

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