buy buy buy

Posted: April 19, 2012 in This is the Voice of Lefty Reason


Sitting in Starbucks in a major retail park.  Mammon has conquered; shopping is the new religion, hobby and lifestyle rolled up in cod art-deco chandeliers and the endless chains of samey shops.  As far from the traditional British high street as you can get, no butchers, bakers or candlestick makers here, just clothes and shoes on and on forever in a glitzy, day-glo stream.  The 18 year old waitress tells me it is the best job she has ever had, loves the place and the people.  She has no views on what Starbucks actually stands for.  A  beacon of American capitalism writ large as it marches across the world with its quasi-ethnic produce and chintzy “team” ethic.  I sit and ponder over a Mocha, not a bad brew actually. I watch the faces of the consumers, not much joy to be had. Plenty of grim faced turbo-buyers with their recent purchases clutched tight in the obligatory, highly branded, plastic bags.  Sports wear, leisure wear, middle aged Boden-ites and young trendies; all here, all purchasing, all a bit grim to be honest.  Shopping was once a necessity, bought when needed, if needed.  It has become the all encompassing beast of “retail” feeding off itself like some monstrous cannibalistic entity that can never be satisfied.  It feeds itself through the vast armies of minimum wage assistants.  Sell, sell, sell then buy, buy, buy in ever increasing volume.  Primark; disposable clothing for the masses, three pound t-shirts, worn once then thrown away.  I long to ask the devotees how they think their clothes are so cheap.  I genuinely imagine they give it no thought; they feel  blessed with such riches in the 21st century. You have never had it so good re-visited.  Follow the clothes back to source.  Factories full of cheap labour, knocking out clothes at barely living wage.  You definitely have never had it so good.

  1. Nick Watson says:

    Excellent and thought-provoking read Tim, keep up the good work.

  2. jimi fawcett says:

    primark…never heard of it till we stayed in stratford..they queued and queued in masses !! for what I can only describe as pure tat…. got myself 10 pairs of undies!! ye Primart….at least we know it’s cheap from cheap labour…but Nike’ and such should be ashamed of themselves!!

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