We live in a world of increasing immediacy, more rapidly closing the gap between what we want and how long it takes to get it.
There was a recent interesting article in the National Post that talked about “compulsive consumerism” in the UK. It discussed how parents who are working long hours are bribing their children designer goods, in lieu of spending time with them, whether they can really afford it or not. The article discussed the long term impact of this behaviour on the future wants of society.
One collateral consequence of consumerism, whether it is compulsive or not, is part of the waste that we manage. It is a good part of the reason why waste generation has continued to increase in Canada until the recent recession. We talked about how we were a “consumer soceity” twenty years ago. We don’t really talk about that anymore.