[comment on a post about recycling technological products Transitioning to an economy of reuse]
The throw-away society is actually a buy new stuff society. The throwing away is just a consequence of not needing two of everything, so any solution must target the excess consumption. Today it has become impossible to buy quality products, even in trades like clothing or furniture, because people don’t buy quality anymore, they think 6 months ahead and want the most disc space they can afford. Instant satisfaction caused by a lack of real satisfaction from living the life they wanted. People don’t have real motivation for their jobs, they are forced to do it for a non-satisfactory symbolic value they can trade for goods. Without real motivation, there’s no real satisfaction. It’s like an addict trying to fill a psychological hole with drugs. Cause and effect don’t add up. [Need and satisfaction] This is not the companies faults, they are only looking to taking away as much money from people as possible, which is the purpose of a company. It’s the consumers that are to blame for the companies’ strategies of building integrated, non-compatible, irrepairable, low-quality products. If we want capitalism we have to accept a psychotic society.
We can use fascism to control the companies, but the companies will find ways to avoid any taxes, because, still, they are only looking to maximize profits and don’t regard taxes as moral indicators, or if they do, they simply disregard that. But the government is inherently conservative; those who are in power are in power because of the current system and have no incentive for change as it can only lead to a gambling with their power. Are they willing to bet they will retain power? The financial crisis did not fuel a new green economy to replace the failing oil-based economy, instead the governing men and women, ironically recycling, kept the economy alive by taking state money and giving it to the banks so they could restart the system of buying and selling, because it is necessary to keep a certain level of consumption to keep old companies alive. The old companies could then afford to keep buying oil and the oil price dropped again and everybody was happy, except the people who lost their money and are waiting for the next oil crisis to get them fired if they weren’t fired already.
The whole of society is to blame for this, but not individuals, instead it’s the hierarchy itself that has caused this self-defeating structure. It keeps the gerilla wars in Congo alive because the consumers want cell phones built with the minerals from the mines control by the gerillas. But we can choose green cars instead of oil cars and stop the oil companies, can’t we? No, we don’t think that far ahead, remember, we’re psychotic. We don’t want a car that needs its batteries charged every 500 miles when we can get a car that only needs refueling every 1,000 miles. So all the money ends up with the oil companies and they make the most of it, bending every possible law of the state and of the market to prevent other businesses from competing with them.
So, while all the things you list under “How can it change” are exactly the things we need to change, these things go against the foundation of our society; profit, and thus can’t happen without changing the system, except really, really slowly, which is the fact of the day. And the only way it’s changing is from political, that is legal, changes and politicians have no incentive other than the polls of the psychotics, who are easily manipulated. Just look at waste management, and by waste I mean human excrement. Being psychotic we have no problem pooing in fresh water and pretending we are divine souls and shit does not exist, we don’t even have to look at it, just flush and it disappears as if it never existed. The debate is almost nonexistent, because the psychotics are not aware of their own poo. We care a lot for the food we eat. I mean, 6,800,000,000 people eat a lot of food. All that food doesn’t just disappear. The production of food is severely mismanaged. We have huge taxes on food from outside EU and the USA to artificially keep farms alive, and the state buys the production surplus to keep them alive even longer and then gives the food as aid to poor countries which ruins the farmers of those countries as they can’t economically compete with free food. The collapse of the self-defeating system is procrastinated. As someone pointed out in a comment, the standard of living has to go down, and the reason is very simple, we can’t keep the developing countries at bay much longer and capitalism is a system of relative worth. A rich person is only as rich as the others are poor.
Back to the poo. The treatment facilities are horribly low-tech and send the polluted fresh water into the ocean. A high-tech solution would be shitting in a machine at the top and 2 days later a sandwich comes out the bottom. But the farmers need to produce as much as possible so they breed mutant cows and chicken that need tonnes of high-quality proteins, which means cutting down trees and the Brazilian savannah to produce food for cattle that expend most of it as body heat and as in all businesses size and specialization is necessary for good profit so they have to buy fertilizers from companies that mine phosphor because it is cheaper than buying manure. And we can’t use human poo because we can’t treat it properly and it’s filled with medicines and stuff. And when all soil and water goes to cotton and ethanol production, then people are gonna starve. They’re already starving and waging war because of it in Sudan and Ethiopia and we’re letting it happen because we’re living in a delusional psychotic dream fed into us constantly by the equally delusional journalists.
There’s enough food to go around, we have more than enough technology to not have to rely on natural soil for food production, we can build giant green houses with hydroponics if we want to. We can share the food we have. Instead companies buy land in Africa, make the people work for low wages in growing a plant that is sent to the US and refined into a pill that makes your hunger subside so that fat people stop eating so much. Not only is it horrifyingly cynic to take land from starving people and use it to let others overeat, but the unhealthy food consumption, another type of addiction filling some hole from childhood trauma or lack of sense of self-worth, is leading the economy away from efficient, nutritious farming and food production into an industry of artificial sweeteners and similar high-energy-consuming additions and processing of food to make meat look tubes so you don’t have to think about eating a sentient being or thanking your kill in a ritualistic way to honor your dependency on the molecules that surround you and make up your very existence.
Take the energy problem e.g. The sun produces more energy than all humans have ever consumed through-out the entire history of humanity. In 1 second! And we can build solar panels with silicon, which is the most abundant element on earth. How insane do you have to be to look at the sun every single day and go “Hmm, that’s a big warm, shining thing. Let’s not get our energy from that, let’s instead burn the remains of trees and animals that lived millions of years ago.” I’m not saying we should treat nature as something magical, I’m just saying we need to be a lot more practical when it comes to resource management, and it’s gonna take strong politicians to combat the companies that prevent this from happening and right now, neither consumers, journalists, politicians nor employees are aware or strong enough to fight the companies.