The Story of All Our Stuff

My friend turned me on to this website:  It gives a quick and sobering summary of where all our STUFF comes from.  Our “designed for disposal” economy, the toxins we make, the labor injustices, our overconsumption, and the methods of disposal are all terrible.  Please watch it, decide on what action you can take, and forward it on!  Especially to anyone who doesn’t “get” the issues of sustainability and justice that we’re facing.  Our system is in crisis!

For a focus on electronics, see this website:

2 thoughts on “The Story of All Our Stuff

  1. Thanks, Mako! I really like the design and production, which conveys its message very effectively. I agree with the main point, that capitalism is an ever-growing beast fueled by increasing consumption and planned obsolescence. I found some parts a bit too fast and loose with the facts, such as toxins in breast milk, technology as fashion, and the dangers of dioxin. But overall, a good message.

    My personal belief is that we should move more of our existence online, where we consume less physical materials and more information. Bits rather than atoms. It’s true that materials are needed to create technology, but I believe that can be reduced in the future as computers get smaller and more integrated. I also think that it’s only a first step, as consumption in the virtual domain doesn’t help alleviate the spiritual issues of soul development (e.g. greed).

  2. Sometimes people can feel overwhelmed by the injustices of production/consumption and do nothing or feel like they can purchase nothing without painful guilt. I have found that chosing something to focus on can be empowering and teach us new habits, then we can move to the next area. For example, because it is so hard to track down the conditions of how clothing is made, and most IS made in the two/thirds world in poor conditions I try not to buy any clothing from retailers. That is, use second hand or passed along in my community clothes. Food is another good place to start, try 6 months or a year of thoughtful local non-packaged food and see how it goes, eventually one can disengage from many of the injust retailing/industries of our consumer culture.
    Like many of the ways that Jesus works to transform people even these habits can be broken!!

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