Thursday, October 30, 2008

Running low on money?

I just read a New York Times article (my source for headlines at least!) -

Stark Signs of a Slowdown, Days Before Election - Less than a week before Americans go to the polls to select a president, a government report released Thursday showed that the economy contracted in the third quarter as consumer spending dipped for the first time in 17 years. (complete article reference below)

While I'm well aware of the many negatives associated with an economic downturn, I found a couple of very bright spots in this news. Before that though - it is mind-boggling to me that we have been spending more and more every quarter for 17 years!!!

I'm just about done reading my college's book of the year, Garbage Land by Elizabeth Royte. I also read a bit of another book this morning, Raising Unselfish Kids in a Selfish World by Jill Rigby. Royte lives in NYC and follows every bit of her trash to landfills, recycling, sewer, etc. Great reading actually. Her ultimate solution for the massive amount of waste that we generate is - buy less and use less. Rigby writes about how "me-centric" we have all become, and writes that a solution for living different is to live gladly with what we have, instead of always wanting the latest clothes, house, games, trip, you name it.

Two respectable ladies writing about topics that are dear to my heart - raising unselfish kids and taking care of the world around us. One main conclusion - buying less.

Maybe running low on money will be good for all us - good for building character in me and my kids, and good for our world. Spending less has never sounded so profitable!

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/31/business/economy/31econ.html?ei=5070

5 comments:

Don said...

Spending less, contentment, doesn't help expand the economy. Some of our country's best minds are in advertising, working day in, day out, to create a consumer mentality.

I'll bet one of the best ways to raise unselfish children is to model unselfishness, delayed gratification, and generally thinking of others. Hmmm... I wonder if that works?

PS: Great closing line!

JERALDandLESLIE said...

joanna,
I've read all three latest entries and I've totally be inspired by your thoughts!--thank you! I am fortunate to have you as a friend! keep it up--and now I'm off to blog as well!

Jimmy said...

There has to be a balance between spending and saving. The consumer mentality has led many in our country to be engulfed in credit card debt and then some subsequently cannot make their mortgage payments and lose their homes. Spending is the backbone of the economy but it requires some prudence.

Jimmy said...

"I'll bet one of the best ways to raise unselfish children is to model unselfishness, delayed gratification, and generally thinking of others. Hmmm... I wonder if that works?"

Speaking from experience, Don? Just kiddin, haha. I plan on spoiling my kids every chance I get. I'm clearly ready for fatherhood

joanna said...

Glad to hear from you everyone - Dad on parenting, Leslie on friendship, and Jimmy as the guest financial consultant (sorry Jim, no parenting advice from you yet!).