Certainly my cheapskatery, a.k.a. frugalness, has been a constant topic of mine. Maybe I am frugal because I lived below the poverty line during a decade of my college and post graduate studies. When you have little spend, you learn how to get by with less. What if everyone was frugal like me, I used to think. Back in June, I ran across an on-line article that asked this very question: What Would Happen IF Everyone Was Frugal? This mental exercise was fun back in June but terribly relevant now. As credit markets collapse, jobs become scarce, and the future becomes undertain, more and more people are becoming frugal just like me! Sure, the economy will take a big hit as people save their pennies and drive their cars until they become scrap metal. Over time, though, we will all benefit from fewer bankruptcies, foreclosures, and disposing of piles of waste produced by our pre-economic metldown consumer driven society.
I wonder though, what if people were more like me in other ways too? Many industries would cease to exist. Say good buy to the alcholic beverages industries . . . and drunk driving accidents. The soda (or pop) industry would implode and with it a sizeable demand for dental work. Coffee and tobacco growers would need to find new crops to plant. Illicit drugs would disappear completely, and morticianers along on the Mexican/Amercian border would have to find new jobs. Green products would become the industry standard. Without early adopters, new consumer technologies will take longer to develop. Sales of used goods would spike. Medical costs would fall some as more and more people would only go to the doctor when they absolutely had to.
There would be massive cultural changes as well. Micheal Bay would stop making movies, no one would see them. The internet would become the primary means of all entertainment and non-internet based entertianment would be at risk of extinctions. Top 40 radio would stop broadcasting. Discs in generally will become a dead media. Comic books would move out of their niche. Videogames would continue their increasing domination of media. The term "literally" would be used in its proper sense. Saturday Night Live would be cancelled and thereafter made reference to in association with something that was meant to be funny, but is not. "That joke was SNL".
I would like to think that the rate of hear disease would fall, as all people would at least try to exercise. Organic and natural foods would supplant foods with chemicals like MSG in them. Sure, cookies would become a staple food but we would all at least try to have a vegatable course at dinner. Kids would spend more time playing outside. Crime would near non-existence, espcially violent crimes. Volunteerism and charitable giving, however, would reach all time lows 😦
Does everyone hope that they are good people making the world a better place to live? They would if they were more like me. At least, I hope so.