I presently work nights in a warehouse that serves a group of mid-market clothing brands. Sales are weak- hours are being cut in every (non-management) area. If this was strictly a reaction to poor products (quality or selection), bad pricing or weak marketing I could say “Fine- free enterprise weeds out the weak“. If it was a sign that consumers generally are wiseing up that a consumption-based society must inevitability consume itself that would be progress- painful as it is- that could bring a better world.
Sadly I am convinced it is but another indication that the once-powerful Middle Class is being replaced with an oh-so modern neo-feudalism (now with Internet access). Henry Ford realized that if he under-paid his employees they would not be able to afford the cars they made. Few (if any) of those who make the eGadgets we love could afford to purchase one. We’ve let manufacturing be ‘out-sourced’ overseas (low wages, lax or non-existent worker protections) as we feed our consuming desire to be the most materialistic people to ever inhabit this reality.
Working for barely-above minimum wage, with no benefits, I can not afford to purchase the products that surround me. I have not gone to a movie theatre in well over a decade and recently ‘cut the cable’ in favour of buying food. Not that I am devoid of entertainment. While I enjoy on-line media I refuse to just watch fictional programs to escape- so I know not everyone is blind to what is happening. Although there are plenty of people who seem unable to understand their contributions to their own destruction.
People are beginning to realize we are not without options. Change can happen. Change WILL happen. New sacrifices will be demanded. If the “1%” wise up in time it won’t have to include their very lives. Even the numbest herd of sheep may awake to the insanity surrounding them.