we can't afford to buy cheap things

Somewhat following on from my previous post on command line searching I have been reminded of a phrase an ex of mine used to use: “we can’t afford to buy cheap things”. Now he was Romanian and had grown up under Ceauşescu and the deprivation that the Communists brought with them.They didn’t want to buy cheap things as they would then need replacing more frequently, so spending more now would mean a lower outlay over time.

It seems to me that this isn’t a view that is shared in the current western society (huge generalisation I know!). Yesterday had the highest sales ever for Woolworths – because it was a closing down sale and everything was even cheaper than normal for Woolies. To balance this though there doesn’t seem to be the understanding that cheap doesn’t mean value for money – it’s a move towards low cost at the expense of quality.

Cheap used to be seen as a somewhat derogatory comment but now is the key selling point of an object. Maybe this is tied up with an inability to consider the long-term. We are becoming a consumer culture where everything is wanted now and you can’t wait – even if it would be better.

Not sure what my point is about this, but it does make me worry about what might happen in the future…are we all doomed?

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