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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

So Where Am I Supposed To Buy Tiolet Paper?

I was reading this article today on Alternet about Target being no better than Walmart when it comes to union-busting activities, refusing to pay a living wage and using part-time so that they don’t have to pay for healthcare. I always suspected this was true but sometimes I like to put my hand over my ears and say over and over, “I’m not listening I’m not listening I’m not listening.” I’ve done that quite a bit in general lately because if I didn’t, I wouldn’t be alive. There is interesting commentary at the end of the article, much of it expressing frustration with the greater system that makes stores like Target possible. Big box retailers are just a part of a greater problem – consumer culture. It goes beyond the ridiculous circle of we have to go to Target because that’s what we can afford and then we’re just supporting the very system that underpays us in the first place argument. It’s our unquenchable need for *stuff* to define and placate ourselves – myself included. What’s worse is that while being conscious of my own consumerism, I still engage in it. Because my family is about to cut back to one income for a few months, I’ve been thinking of all the things we purchase that we don’t need and I’m hoping that living on a very fixed salary with absolutely no room for anything extraneous will be a good lesson in What Not To Buy.

I read this article the other day, and I experienced the same sort of 'oh crap, now I have to face up to the hypocrisy of being anti-PoopMart but gleefully shopping at Target.' I feel sort of helpless because where DO you go? Wheatsville I guess. I usually get recycled paper products, which Target doesn't even really carry. But 7th Generation products are more $$ than Target brand. The same feeling is generated by watching the documentary "The Corporation." So, is capitalism the matrix or is patriarchy? I suppose you could argue that one begets the other, but patriarchy probably came first. Ohh, my aching brain.

Hey, we could make our own toilet paper!
...as long as we don't have to recycle used toilet paper!
wheatsville is pretty limited in what they have, unfortunately, but i guess we should start going there more often. it's all so troubling.
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