>>>> It never fails to amaze me how much negativity and cynicism one can run into about this sort of thing...even in a place like this forum where I consider the average participant to be very enlightened compared to your average Joe. <<<<<
THE REVIEW REEKS NEGATIVITY! I will list examples. But first, IMHO, American spending is good. I hope all BPLers will aspire to make plenty of money so they can buy any gear they want and go anywhere to hike. It is NOT a disease. However, negative, misinformed exaggeration is a sickness.
Negatives from the review:
1) In a world already filled with so much stuff, there seems to be an ever increasing push to obtain the bigger and the better.
2) Americans consume more fuel, food and products than any other country in the world, but are also plagued with stress-related illness, depression and overall poor health.
3) For a country that seems so rich, why are we so poor?
4) ...the probable reason is also the name of their book, Affluenza: The All-Consuming Epidemic.
For sale of course.
5) Affluenza, as it is defined by the authors, is “a painful, contagious, socially transmitted condition of overload, debt, anxiety, and waste resulting from the dogged pursuit of more.”
6) the most powerful and lasting symptom, according to the authors, is the lack of purpose and joy in people’s lives.
7) Americans buy and buy and buy and never quite seem to reach that feeling of contentment.
You can buy a case of beer and it will do the trick.
8) In fact, they tend to feel terrible, weighed down by the excess existing in their lives.
Can't move. Help me.
9) The book cites numerous examples of people who have realized that the accumulation of things, such as power and wealth, have only made them miserable and discontent.
Did they talk to Warren Buffet or Bill Gates?
10) They only find happiness when they lighten up their lives and rid themselves of that which “you can’t take with you when you go.”
Please give your stuff to the authors. You'll feel better.
11) ...chronicling and calculating the expanding way of life in America, and how it is making people sick.
12) ...the authors morbidly cover and deconstruct the crucial error in the fabric of the American culture: we simply carry too much.
My back hurts. Please help me.
13) The information, regardless of how overwhelming the book may seem at times, is of extreme importance and value, especially to Americans today.
Overwhelming? Maybe a contradiction.
14) Going lighter (although those exact words are not used in the book) is the message.
15) To seek out, appreciate, and foster that which cannot be purchased is provided as a method for a better life, though the authors achieve this by stuffing the book full of facts, figures and shock-value anecdotes. It is supersized, if you will.
Stuffing? Contradiction again.
16) In two hundred forty-seven jolting pages (and that is before the forty-one pages of notes, a bibliography, sources and a complete index) it manages to cut through the never-ending onslaught and spin of advertising, finally presenting to the consumer the world as it is, not as it is marketed.
What? 247 pages + 41 more pages = contradiction!