Thursday, September 18, 2008

Mo' Money, Mo' Problems

One thing I will never be comfortable with: credit. Credit, credit, credit. Everything here works on credit. I am a cash-based-economy kind of girl. If I dont have it in my pocket, I just wont spend it. Ive been working for almost one year now and I still havent opened a bank account (although it looks like ill have to cave on that one soon because the world order is against me). In America, more than any other country Ive visited or heard of, everything is credit purchased. People live their entire lives spending money they've never seen or touched. This ephemeral cash flow scares me. Everyone owes money to the banks, its almost a national catastrophe. This is the true indication, i guess, of a capitalist society. It is, simply, capital. and either you try to "leverage" it, or you just fiddle with it and make it move around. Either way, every american citizen partakes more in the MARKET than I have ever conceived of being. I finally understand what we were talking in my economics textbooks and now i like it even less. I used to think that just being part of a modern nation-state you are inevitably part of the capitalist world order. and to an extent, of course, you are. but now i really see the implications of that day to day. Maybe im a little too 20th century but I dont really think of money in the ...um..metaphorical sense.

4 comments:

Iraqi American said...

haha funny post. Almost 2/3 of the American economy is solely based upon how much the average, middle class American invests in banks or spends on stuff. :)

Craig Duff said...

And we're sometimes encouraged by our leaders to shop our way out of a crisis as our patriotic duty!

But smart Americans -- and there are many of us -- use credit cards as a convenience and pay them off every month instead of paying interest to the bank.

My parents grew up in the depression, and perhaps they instilled in me a greater sense of thrift and common sense when it comes to my hard-earned dollars.

Kafir said...

Winston Churchill said that democracy was the worst form of government, except for all the other forms of government. I think the same thing can be said about capitalism. It has its blemishes to be sure, but they are not nearly as large or as numerous as the blemishes in socialism or communism.

Windingstad said...

Interesting comment. I've always considered America to be quite cash oriented.

In my tiny country (Norway) many people don't even carry cash - and it would be impossible to function withouth a bank account and credit card. I myself would buy everything from a coup of coffe to car with cc.

But let me ask you something: Do people still use checks over there? That is a funny thing:)