Were the Good Old Days Really So Good?

Why are we in such a rush to return to the way things were?

Most reports I’m reading say that it will take years for the economy to recover to where it was. Why have we set this as our baseline for success? Who says the way we’ve behaved in the past 5 decades (especially the last 15 to 20 years) is the way we should behave in the future? Certainly not the rest of the world. Certainly not the environment.

I was reading an article in Adweek that said Boomers are now saving rather than spending, and it was put across as bad news (at least for marketers). Isn’t it about frigging time we started doing that?

I think we have to accept that as much fun as the party has been, it can’t keep going on. Urging us to get back to where we were is like curing a hangover with another drink. We’ve been irresponsible, greedy, short sighted and consumed by consumption. And what we’re going through is directly attributable to that behavior. A change in behavior is absolutely essential for survival. It won’t be fun, but a future, any future, is a lot more likely if we go through the pain now than if we continue to get back on what Michael Eysenck calls the hedonic treadmill, chasing some misbegotten ideal of happiness.

Thank goodness Boomers are saving. Thank goodness Detroit is seriously looking at more environmental vehicles. Thank goodness we’re starting to realize there’s more to life than a big screen TV. It’s about time.

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