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He who is not impatient is not in love.
Italian Proverb
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  • "Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed." - Mahatma Gandhi, quoted in E.F. Schumacher, Small Is Beautiful
  • "God forbid that India should ever take to industrialism after the manner of the west... keeping the world in chains. If [our nation] took to similar economic exploitation, it would strip the world bare like locusts." - Mahatma Gandhi
  • "Nature provides a free lunch, but only if we control our appetites. " - William Ruckelshaus, Business Week, 18 June 1990
  • "U.S. consumers and industry dispose of enough aluminum to rebuild the commercial air fleet every three months; enough iron and steel to continuously supply all automakers; enough glass to fill New York's World Trade Center every two weeks." - Environmental Defense Fund advertisement, Christian Science Monitor, 1990
  • "Oh, for the good old days when people would stop Christmas shopping when they ran out of money." - Author Unknown
  • "Be glad that you're greedy; the national economy would collapse if you weren't." - Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966
  • "You can never get enough of what you don't need to make you happy." - Eric Hoffer
  • "After a visit to the beach, it's hard to believe that we live in a material world." - Pam Shaw
  • "You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need." - Vernon Howard
  • "The only reason a great many American families don't own an elephant is that they have never been offered an elephant for a dollar down and easy weekly payments." - Mad Magazine
  • "Do not trouble yourself much to get new things, whether clothes or friends.... Sell your clothes and keep your thoughts." - Henry David Thoreau
  • "The poverty of our century is unlike that of any other. It is not, as poverty was before, the result of natural scarcity, but of a set of priorities imposed upon the rest of the world by the rich. Consequently, the modern poor are not pitied... but written off as trash. The twentieth-century consumer economy has produced the first culture for which a beggar is a reminder of nothing." - John Berger
  • "Racial injustice, war, urban blight, and environmental rape have a common denominator in our exploitative economic system." - Channing E. Phillips, speech, Washington, D.C., 22 April 1970
  • "To perceive Christmas through its wrappings becomes more difficult with every year." - Elwyn Brooks White
  • "I may be a pessimist, but the philosophy of anti-thrift just now coming into being seems to me the greatest danger to the peace of the world." - Adriano Tilgher
  • "There must be more to life than having everything!" - Maurice Sendak
  • "Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don't need." - From the movie Fight Club, based on the novel by Chuck Palahniuk
  • "He who buys what he does not need steals from himself." - Author Unknown
  • "Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell." - Edward Abbey
  • "The hardest thing is to take less when you can get more." - Kin Hubbard
  • "In the United States Christmas has become the rape of an idea." - Richard Bach
  • "The gap in our economy is between what we have and what we think we ought to have - and that is a moral problem, not an economic one." - Paul Heyne
  • "Forethought and temperance are the virtues which produced thrift, and with thrift the economic progress of society. And those are the virtues which today are gravely compromised." - Adriano Tilgher
  • By continually pushing the message that we have the right to gratification now, consumerism at its most expansive encouraged a demand for fulfillment that could not so easily be contained by products. – Ellen Willis
  • "Who covets more, is evermore a slave." - Robert Herrick
  • "... the consumerist pornography of advertising" - Ronald Wright, A short history of progress, Chapter 5, note 68.
  • "He who dies with the most toys, wins." - Anonymous
  • Under present conditions, people are preoccupied with consumer goods not because they are brainwashed but because buying is the one pleasurable activity not only permitted but actively encouraged by our rulers. The pleasure of eating an ice cream cone may be minor compared to the pleasure of meaningful, autonomous work, but the former is easily available and the latter is not. A poor family would undoubtedly rather have a decent apartment than a new TV, but since they are unlikely to get the apartment, what is to be gained by not getting the TV?

Consumerism and religion

  • "Mammon, n.: The god of the world's leading religion." - Ambrose Bierce
  • "He who knows he has enough is rich" - Tao Te Ching Chapter 33
  • "Excess and deficiency are equally are at fault." - Confucius, XI 15
  • "Eat and drink, but waste not by excess; verily He loves not the excessive." - Islam Qu'ran 7.31
  • "Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labour for that which does not satisfy." Isaiah 55:2
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