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Posted: August 12, 2010 3:40 p.m.

Thanks, but no thanks

I disagree with both the liberal and conservative approaches to the current economic crisis.

The conservative approach is to give more money to the wealthy so they can consume more.

The liberal approach is to give money to the other 90 percent of us so we can consume more.

Do you see something in common in those two approaches to the economy? Both are based on consumption, whether we need the products or not.

Consumption of more Gummy Bears, clothes that last perhaps for a year, electronic devices that further isolate us from human contact, instant noise that passes for information, etc.

They assume a consumer society. But, we have to agree to consume. I think our answer should be a firm but polite, "thanks, but no thanks."

My parents grew up in an investment society. They did not object to taxes which paid for the roads, schools/colleges, libraries, social security, because they were part of an investment society. They were investing in a future that would benefit themselves and others.

They invested at home as well. They did not buy on credit except for their home and when I was in high school, a new car. Everything else was on a cash basis. Rather than the latest gadgets, we spent a lot of time just being at home, largely entertaining ourselves. Books figured rather prominently in that entertainment.

Invest in yourselves, in your family and in your community. The answer isn’t more consumption. More consumption is the question. The answer is, "Thanks, but no thanks."

Patrick Durusau is a resident of Covington. His columns regularly appear on Fridays.

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