I feel the same way. Along with the consumer culture, we've developed into a disposable goods culture, which obviously bolsters the consumerism. Even our pop culture icons have become disposable (American Idol and the like; think about it). I'd rather have something that I can fix rather than something I have to replace, or at least something that I can fix by replacing a PART of the item instead of replacing the whole item.
And I read your reply on the last page about the sense of entitlement, and let me tell you that I could not agree more, especially with my generation (I just turned 24.) and I suspect that unless things change, it will get worse with each subsequent generation. Reality TV is a big contributor to this mindset. We seem to think that we're going to get paid to do pretty much nothing that even resembles hard work.
And you are right about the college grads, too. Many of my friends who went off to college that I still keep in contact with seem to think that when they earn their degree, they are guaranteed a job at the end of it. I tell them time and again that's not the case. It better prepares one for a job, but they might have to take some work up in the meantime to make ends meet until they can get their foot into the door of the career they chose to pursue. At first the automatically assumed that I had NO idea what I was talking about just because I am not going to college.
Good thing you realize this and early. I can't say much as to the cause of this sense of entitlement but I sure see it.
One thing that you can pretty much take to the bank is that hard work and talent can still get you places. Unfortunately connections will probably take you further, faster but there is always room for smart workers. Keep your ears open. I find the best way of finding employees is to poach them.
Doesn't happen often but I see smart, highly motivated people working in local businesses and such. If you look hard enough you can often tell how the employer is treating them. I will leave them my card and ask them to call me off hours. I once poached a waitress to work as an office admin type. She had no office experience but having her trained was pretty easy and she worked out great.
I agree. I would love to purchase things that last longer even if they cost more. I'm tired of Chinese, and other, crap ending up just costing me more when they break. I was putting up some ornamental ironwork in my house last night and the head of one of the screws just twisted off leaving the shaft in the wood. I looked at the package and guess what I read? "Made in China". My wife can always tell when I'm working with something made in China (@#$!@@#$%).
Now the hard part is finding well made stuff at any price. If you do please post it in the "Made in America" group on A of M.
Somewhat related: Seanbaby over at Cracked.com wrote an article that got published this morning called "The 10 Most Unintentionally Hilarious Toys Exported By China" - In a way it's a commentary on the 'quality' of Chinese products, but more than anything it's funnier than all hell.
... words fail me at how funny that article was.
+1, in tears laughing.
I have been living a very minimalist life for the last few years, which means I buy not for just quality, utility, and durability but reflect on what I am going to buy based on what I want and what I need. Right now I guess I don’t need Chinese products because nothing I own is made in China, but I never excluded China, it just happened that way.
good for you, we should all take notice and be mindful of our "stuff".