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Spend, baby, spend

Written By: - Date published: 12:02 pm, December 22nd, 2008 - 16 comments
Categories: uncategorized - Tags:


Retailers are whining and the Herald has taken on the role of nanny-state, telling us it is our social responsibility but more stuff and to take on more consumer debt. It’s called economics, apparently. So, get out there and spend, people.

What are you, socialists?

Anyhoo, that’s pretty much me for the year. We’re going to take turns as duty poster, doing a post every day or two over the holidays. Unless anything huge comes up, I’ll see youse in a few weeks.

Enjoy the holidays, let’s hope the summer weather picks up.

Ignore the exhortations to spend, spend, spend. Life shouldn’t be about trying to own lots of stuff and Christmas shouldn’t be about giving and receiving lots of stuff.

Whether you’re Christian and into the whole redemptive story of Jesus or, like me, welcome the opportunity to spend some time with the family and be nice to each other, Christmas is a chance to remember our better side. We can take the time to be thoughtful and generous to each other. We can take the time to live life in its essential simplicity. It’s not all about getting more more more. It’s about experiencing living while you can and trying to do what you can to improve the lives of others.

Good on yas.

16 comments on “Spend, baby, spend ”

  1. atavism 1

    Whether you’re Christian and into the whole death, redemption, and resurrection story

    …pretty sure that one’s Easter Steve

  2. r0b 2

    Yup, Merry Christmas all (from far away).

  3. DeeDub 3

    Yeah, nice thoughts, Steve.

    Complaints of the season to you all. (Joking)

    Seriously though, I hope all you Standardistas have a great holiday season. Thanks for all your work this year from a newbie who’s really enjoying the environment ’round here.


  4. Ianmac 4

    Yes. Ejoy and thanks Steve.
    I still want to back my calendar idea where November the 40th goes straight to Jan 1st and just make January a bit longer.

  5. atavism. Yeah, but Christmas is also ultimately about his death because that’s the important part of whole story of Jesus, which when it boils down is ‘we’re bad lots of the time but we can be good, let’s try to be good’

  6. Felix 6

    Cheers Steve, enjoy a well earned break. (And all the other standardistas too of course)

    Hey Ian I quite like the sound of that. Do you have a pamphlet I could subscribe to perhaps?

  7. outofbed 7

    Christmas ? Seems like a good time to watch this

  8. Daveski 8

    The great thing about being a leftie is you can pick and choose when to support market economies. When there’s not enough jobs or the pay and conditions aren’t good enough, then you without exception expect the market to perform one way or the other.

    The point you miss of course is that if people stop buying full stop then the economy will tank and jobs will be lost etc. Not all the economy relies on people buying at Xmas but any jobs lost still hurt.

    On the other hand, I can accept what you are saying about rampant consumerism – in principle, spending your money on things you don’t need doesn’t seem like a great idea.

    Anyway, I think I;ve agreed with one of your comments all year but that doesn’t mean I haven’t looked forward to your posts which often have well-thought out and reasoned discussion which I normally happen to disagree with.

    Enjoy your break – I plan to do just that!

  9. Rex Widerstrom 9

    Steve, you old Grinch. You wouldn’t begrudge the captains of industry their bonuses, would you? Like the bank executives who hoovered up $US1.6 billion in bonuses while they took the taxpayers’ money because their banks were insolvent?

    $1.6 billion barely buys a superyacht nowadays.

    Shame on you, at a time when we should all be giving.

    But Merry Christmas nonetheless.

  10. Ari 10

    The great thing about being a leftie is you can pick and choose when to support market economies. When there’s not enough jobs or the pay and conditions aren’t good enough, then you without exception expect the market to perform one way or the other.

    Firstly, as I’m fond of telling people on the left: The left, far more than the right, is a collection of very disparate views, and we’re only unified in any sense because of our agreement that right-wing views tend to damage society more than they help it. You don’t get to make categorical statements about the left, as it’s composed of animal rights activists, environmentalists, socialists, social democrats, feminists, queer rights activists, unions, workers, transnationalists, supporters of free markets, anti-consumerists… and I’m sure there’s far, far more.

    The Left in general can’t be inconsistent because it’s not a single person with a single set of principles, nor do we all claim to be. Now, an individual such as Steve can be inconsistent, or an arguement can be inconsistent, or a movement’s principles can be inconsistent. But leftism is nothing more than a catch-all label for people who view society as progressing away from something. We don’t all agree as to what it is, but we know the status quo is not enough.

    The point you miss of course is that if people stop buying full stop then the economy will tank and jobs will be lost etc. Not all the economy relies on people buying at Xmas but any jobs lost still hurt.

    People won’t stop buying full-stop short of being afraid to leave their homes. I doubt an economic recession would do that. We don’t need the Herald telling us to shop shop shop to stop the recession, in fact, in the long term taking their advice would be bad for our economy as it would increase our foreign creditors. Our problem in New Zealand is not that we don’t spend enough, it’s that half of the stuff we can buy involves sending our money overseas.

  11. Rex Widerstrom 11

    This is brilliant.

    That’s all I wanted to say, really.

    [lprent: It probably would be – but there isn’t a link there 😈 ]

  12. RedLogix 12

    Buggered off work early today and drove out to Riversdale beach. Stunningly beautiful day with no wind and the perfect temperature and only a handful of people about. Stuffed the boot full of big fat bull kelps for the garden and walked a few hours the length of the beach, while my daydreams were walking the length of the PCT. Ah well idle fantasies are free.

    Many thanks everyone, especially SP, Tane, IrishBill and Dancer for all the great work. Lots of stuff I’ve really enjoyed reading, but I hold back from saying so at the time, cos it gets naff if you overdo it. In the end though we finish up undercooking the credit that is due… so here is one great big one to make up for all the little ones that got away.

    Although I possess a religious bent, oddly enough I’m not a big fan of Christmas. It would be better if the whole commercialised hoha was dropped and the entire thing given back to the Christians to celebrate the actual birth of Christ in both joy and dignity. I tend to go a bit anti-materialism in reaction to it. This year I don’t have a big family thing do (were saving it till later in Jan), so my Christmas lunch will be baked beans on toast in the spirit of pure cussed contrarianism.

    In a way I find it a shame that in the southern hemisphere the Dec/Jan period is an overstuffed mish-mash of ‘end of the business/school year’, Christmas, the annual family reunion, the major piss-up at New Year, the long annual leave/school holidays all jammed into one credit card murdering, liver rotting, sanity sapping burst of madness. Each one of these events would be better appreciated if somehow we spread them out over the annual calendar more. Too many families crack up under the stress of it all, and I can’t see the sense in that. It is families that matter the most. Lots of people who cannot make up their minds if they do not see enough of their family, or too much as it is. The presents, the food, the booze and partying is not so important; your attention and love is.

    Many thanks for a great year. (Especially to our bastard sysop from hell, without whom none of us would be permitted to exist.) Next year is full of challenging portents. I’ve no idea what the hell is going to happen, but whatever it is, I think it will change us all. And we are all going to need each other to get through it, family, friends, neighbours and community.

    I love you all. RedLogix

  13. Chris G 13

    Marilyn Manson in his awseome comments in Bowling for Columbine puts it well saying something along the lines of “Everyone just tells you to consume, consume and consume”

    Respect skyrocketed after listening to that guy chat to michael moore. Not so sure about the music tho :S

  14. Rex Widerstrom 14

    Goddamn formatting thingy wouldn’t go away. Damn these unable-to-hand-code wusses that need such toys 😛

    Try this.


    I possess a religious bent

    You’re a demon occupying the body of a priest with a thing for choirboys?


  15. RedLogix 15

    Yes Rex, and the best thing is that I’ve got the priest believing that I am his only hope for salvation.

  16. the sprout 16

    And then I see today’s front page is screaming NZ’s current account deficit “soars to dangerous levels” (despite it being higher in March 2006 than it is now).


    Is the Herald’s mission statement “To confuse and mislead readers at every opportunity”, or is it just that they haven’t got a clue what they’re doing from one day to the next?

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