Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed.
~Mohandas K. Gandhi, quoted in E.F. Schumacher, Small Is Beautiful
Nature provides a free lunch, but only if we control our appetites.
~William Ruckelshaus, Business Week, 18 June 1990
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.
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.
Be glad that you're greedy; the national economy would collapse if you weren't.
~Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic's Notebook, 1966
After a visit to the beach, it's hard to believe that we live in a material world.
You can never get enough of what you don't need to make you happy.
You have succeeded in life when all you really want is only what you really need.
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.
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.
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.
There must be more to life than having everything!
Mammon, n.: The god of the world's leading religion.
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.
Once again, we come to the Holiday Season, a deeply religious time that each of us observes, in his own way, by going to the mall of his choice.
Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.
The hardest thing is to take less when you can get more.
In the United States Christmas has become the rape of an idea.
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.
Who covets more, is evermore a slave.
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.