How exactly does media rhetoric influence our values? According to market research firm Yankelovich, the average city resident is bombarded with 3,000 to 5,000 advertisements per day. We are constantly told by the media that in order to fit into our desired image tribes we have to buy the right clothes, the fastest technology, and the newest car. We are told that the ideal American is someone who works hard in order to have more purchasing power, thereby equating success with the ability to consume more stuff. However, by consuming more we are wasting precious resources (without which, we would have no economy) and are polluting the planet with last year’s stuff. So why do we measure prosperity in terms of Gross Domestic Product when constant consumption hurts the planet and our wallets?
By Arista Burwell-Chen