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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
BDF Offline
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Rising Prices - January 19th 2012, 06:02 PM

In the past I've done a fair amount of moaning on how the "higher-ups" in the UK (and probably a lot of other countries) are inflating the prices of food. Their reasons are that supposedly demand for food in the far East has risen. I'm sure that has contributed, but so has their extortionate greed to a large extent. I don't have to quote prices for most people to know what I mean... 4, for a small box of strawberries... lol. What a joke. It seems most of the foods advertised or widely regarded as "healthy" are also considerably more expensive than the "ordinary" food.
So with that point made... I'm becoming slowly convinced that we deserve what we're getting. I manage to maintain a reasonably healthy diet, keep good physique etc... without spending foolish amounts on food (besides... over-spending just gets you fat in this context). I manage, why the hell can't others??? Granted, I'm not exactly doing poorly with money, I never have, but the main reason is because... I don't spend it like a darn idiot. I can live off 25 a week and keep a decent diet. Others I see, regularly splash out on snacks, wine, beer, ready-made sauces, and even takeaways. Not to mention that they're completely uneconomical in their shopping even for bare essentials. You can easily triple your food bill per person doing just that.
A lot of people I see in supermarkets when I go shopping, still stuff their trolleys full of absolute shit. There's several types of toasting bread, all of them almost identical in every way, perhaps apart from colour and packaging. Prices range from as little 20p a loaf, all the way up to 2. Why do people so frequently still go for those at 1 upwards??? Because they look "pretty" on the shelf? And at the same time we moan about rising prices. If that's what we do, then we deserve to have our asses handed to us by all those corporates we call assholes.
What about energy drinks? 1 a can. 2 cans a day, 5 days a week = 10... 500 a year. Booze: 1 can a day, 1.50... 10 a week... another 500. Lunch every day at work + coffee = 10 or more. Those expensive "fresh squeezed" orange juices we like to buy so much... 3 a carton, finished in two days.... 12 a week... and all this shit adds up to several grand a year on absolute crap we don't really need, or can greatly cut back on. Why not just drink water with your dinner, or make your own sandwich before going to work? What's so wrong with that?

My ultimate point is... perhaps we have to get used to the idea, that people on the other side of the globe are struggling, but surviving on a tenth of the food the people in the UK consume. They're developing, and their demand is rising. It only makes sense that we inevitably have to sacrifice our luxuries, and ditch buying obscenely priced tuna steaks at 14 each. There simply isn't enough for the whole planet to eat the way the average Brit or American does. Besides... it's unhealthy in many cases. Instead of the stereotypical British breakfast (2 fried eggs + bacon + baked beans + toast + orange juice/coffee)... probably costing 2 a meal, just have a big bowl of porridge. The stuff costs about 1 a kilo, and can last for several weeks... and is 10x healthier. Literally... about 30 times cheaper.
What other alternative do we have? There are several choices, some rational, some not. We can either be reasonable, and simply cut back on the shit we don't need, or go to war and drop nukes on China and India, killing off 3 billion of the world's population, to kill off the extra demand they're imposing on the markets, causing prices to rise... just so that we can hold onto our precious fucking smartphones. How lame... but a lot people give the impression that's the way to go.
I used food as the underlying example here... but it applies to transport, clothes, phones... a lot of things. Supposedly... we're in a recession still, yet when the I-phone 4S came out, queues of people were waiting outside apple stores to waste another 500 of their cash, that will depreciate in one year to 200 at most. Then we end up flogging our smart-phones at bargain prices to companies such as mazuma mobile because we want a new one... an I-phone 5 with some extra gimmicks in it... lol. Wtf is the point? Do you need a seismometer in your phone? You're not in a James Bond movie.
I'm not suddenly shifting all the blame on the public. The corporates are also irresponsible. Why do some electronics cost literally twice as much in the UK as they do in the US? And these inconsistencies apply to many different countries. I'm simply pointing out that a lot of us have a disproportionately high demand for such products, which we don't really need, which causes prices to rise. It's our own fault too, for being cretins and buying into the media hype for a lot of these things.
More of a rant... but it's in the debates because I'd like to hear other people's take on this.


"I don't care about politics"
Then politics doesn't care about you either. Truth. You've got to make your voice heard, if you want to be listened to. But that's too logical for some people, so let me go a step further. Not making your voice heard, leaves other people free to hijack it by speaking on your behalf, even if they don't actually give a shit about you. That's politics. So, make your voice heard. That's not a quote from anywhere. That's just me.



Last edited by BDF; January 19th 2012 at 08:44 PM.
   
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Re: Rising Prices - January 19th 2012, 09:59 PM

Obviously healthy foods are expensive as hell, thats the point. Pesticides and other chemicals used to protect a crop means low prices. When a farmer loses 1/4 of his strawberries every year due to his 'natural' methods, of course the 3/4 is going to rise in price.

Consumerism drives the world, but I do agree sometimes it go's over the edge. As the entire world is starting to become industrialized and globalization is happening, things are getting cheaper and cheaper, and as a result, more things are at our fingertips. Things that we dont need, but consume a little more. This destroys culture I'm sure, but other countries that manufacture our "wasteful products that we love" thrive off that, so it's not necessarily bad. The West is the reason why China and other nations have entered the industrial age, because someone has to buy what they're making. The US is even more consumerist than the UK, so I don't think thats a reason for why things like your Iphone is increasing.
   
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Re: Rising Prices - January 19th 2012, 10:58 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baxter View Post
Obviously healthy foods are expensive as hell, thats the point. Pesticides and other chemicals used to protect a crop means low prices. When a farmer loses 1/4 of his strawberries every year due to his 'natural' methods, of course the 3/4 is going to rise in price.
I understand that... but some things are disproportionately priced. Why should a quarter of a loss in crop output result in twice or thrice the increase in price. A quarter of a loss should result in quarter gain in price, maybe a bit more given that it's not really that simple. Doubling the price on some products is crazy.

It partly due to things like celebrity chefs and stuff like it, that over-exaggerate the "goodness" of those products, all the marketing. Idiots buy into it, and spend 3/kilo of carrots, where there are some almost identical ones for less than 1/kilo.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Baxter View Post
Consumerism drives the world, but I do agree sometimes it go's over the edge. As the entire world is starting to become industrialized and globalization is happening, things are getting cheaper and cheaper, and as a result, more things are at our fingertips. Things that we dont need, but consume a little more. This destroys culture I'm sure, but other countries that manufacture our "wasteful products that we love" thrive off that, so it's not necessarily bad. The West is the reason why China and other nations have entered the industrial age, because someone has to buy what they're making. The US is even more consumerist than the UK, so I don't think thats a reason for why things like your Iphone is increasing.
I don't see much getting "cheaper and cheaper"... lol, I don't really know where you pulled that one out of. Overpopulation is pushing prices up if anything. And I've always been mystified as to why consumer electronics are frequently significantly more expensive in the UK than in the US. Possibly to do with us having a smaller population, and therefore a higher average standard of living, maybe... but I don't even know if that's true. I haven't looked at GDP per capita. Besides, I think USA is higher than us. I don't get it. The most sensible explanation I can think of is that we're idiots willing to pay whatever it takes to get what we want, like toddlers, and then throw tantrums when we can't have it.

Another overall point that I don't think I made really clear enough, is a lot of people in the UK from my experience, moan like hell about rising prices of essentials, yet they don't even buy the essentials. That's the hypocrisy. Or not... given that some surveys have actually shown that increasing numbers of people regard things such as I-pods as essentials. That's where the whole problem lies.

They somehow expect the world to literally evolve around them. They don't take responsibility for the fact that they have no money left to put in savings by the end of the year. They blame it on immigrants, on the government. Sure... no one's perfect, but the whole world would come a long way if everyone took just a bit more responsibility for their own lives and actions... instead of desperately fighting to hold onto a lifestyle that is simply completely unsustainable.

Here's a small cut out of my life... I've already mentioned I live comfortably off 25 a week on food. If I felt tight with money, I could probably roll back to 15 even... but that's getting very tight.
Another way I cut spending on energy, is I usually don't keep my room warmer than 16 degrees Celsius. I turn it off during the day when I'm out. It also encourages me to do exercise in my room to keep warm, but if I can't be bothered I pull a jumper on.
I don't drive to places unless there's no alternative... I don't get this "buzz" when I'm behind the wheel that draws so many people to cars. I don't even have a car... screw it, I see no point. It would cost me more than it's worth. If I need it I rent one for a day, but rarely. I don't even take public transport that frequently. I'll go for a run on a weekend to Iceland, do my shopping there and get it all delivered, for free when I do the shopping in-store. Then jog back. I'm a student at university at the moment, so once I get a job, I'll probably be using public transport more.

I don't expect anyone to copy that lifestyle... I'd probably hate it if someone did. Just want to set an example. People should find ways to adapt... not moan about shit they can't change. If they want to change something the first thing they should change is themselves.


"I don't care about politics"
Then politics doesn't care about you either. Truth. You've got to make your voice heard, if you want to be listened to. But that's too logical for some people, so let me go a step further. Not making your voice heard, leaves other people free to hijack it by speaking on your behalf, even if they don't actually give a shit about you. That's politics. So, make your voice heard. That's not a quote from anywhere. That's just me.


   
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