Tuesday, April 22, 2008

And a very crappy Earth Day to you, too

OK, a little off topic, but there is a sewing connection. I popped into Ross this morning and happened across an adjustable drawer insert that would have been perfect for organizing one of the deep drawers in my sewing table (see? Told you there was a connection). There was no price on it, so I brought it up to the till, where the girl suggested it had broken off something else. It probably had been packaged with something, but nothing that was still on the shelf. "We'll have to throw it away," she said.

"Uh, if you're just going to throw it away, can I take it?"

"No; it's store policy."

Fine. I'm willing to pay for an item your store is going to bin, but you'd rather toss it in a landfill. Does anyone else find it offensive that "green" is being marketed as a responsible consumer principle—in essence so that we can clean up the messes left by a bunch of companies? Nothing you or I can change in our lifestyles would make a fraction of the difference that the Wal-Marts and other mega-evils of the world could make. Not to be too conspiracy-theory about it, but I do think that TV, magazines, and other media peddle stories on greening ourselves because 1) it's an easy, feel-good topic trumpeted by trend forecasters and eaten up by guilt-ridden yuppies, and 2) media is owned by big business, who stand to gain if consumers shoulder the responsibility for making the world a cleaner place.

Apologies for the tangent/tirade—the fact that today is Earth Day compelled me to post (the Other will be pleased I'm not just venting to him). And yes, I try to conserve resources wherever possible, I have no moral opposition to recycling, I prefer to buy secondhand, and I don't go out and dump chemicals into rivers while twiddling my mustachio (before a quick pop round to the railroad tracks to tie up a damsel); I just take a cynical view of big business.

2 comments:

Middle Brother said...

Hooray! Well said!

Mintyfresh said...

have you seen that horrifying ad (i've only seen it once, though) that went on and on about how mothers should spend more time with their children and families, and less time doing the dishes, so you should buy our brand of paper plates and cups???

i couldn't believe it--the intense public shift toward "green" made me believe that this ad was dreamt up by clueless republicans.