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Keeping Up with the Jones’

In the 1950’s something called ‘Planned Obolescence’ was built into the American economy. It’s no coincidence that this happened at the same time as the advertising boom we’ve all come to love via Mad Men. Planned Obolescence “is a policy of planning or designing a product with an artificially limited useful life, so it will become obsolete, that is, unfashionable or no longer functional after a certain period of time.” And if you still don’t understand what I’m talking about, take a look at your Apple iPhone.  Just what model do you have?

Planned Obolescence also applies to fashion, automobiles, appliances, technology obviously and just about everything you can think of. It’s a trap that leave us wanting more-more newer-newer as old products give way to something “better.” But is it better? Is that new $2000 coat really any warmer than the one you already have? Does the new dishwasher really make your dishes any cleaner?

I know so many people in debt because of this consumer trap.

So watch out for those feelings of needing to keep up with everybody around you. Maybe it’s cooler to just say no.Dilbert

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