One of the best books I read last year was 'Affluenza', a book written by Clive Hamilton and Richard Denniss. It described the effect that the ever increasing desire to consumer was having on Australians. It also talked about the powerful marketing strategies that large organisations used to get us confused about our 'wants' and 'needs'. The big organisations benefit when we say things like, 'I need a new plasma TV', or 'I need a new car'.
It explains why in Australia, as the wealthiest generation ever, we are reporting that we actually have a lower quality of life. This makes it such an interesting condition to consider - if we are working hard to be welathier than ever - but wealth does not make us happy - then why are we doing it?
This link takes you to the website of Jessie O'Neil, who discusses some of the issues surrounding affleunza. Some quotes from her website include:
"Anyone--regardless of their net worth--
who belives that they must be rich, that more is always better,
is a self-condemned prisoner of the 'golden ghetto'."
-- Jessie H. O'Neill
Simply defined, Affluenza, is a dysfunctional relationship
with money/wealth, or the pursuit of it. Globally it is a back up
in the flow of money resulting in a polarization of the classes
and a loss of economic and emotional balance.