A key question as we make the long transition to a sustainable and renewable economy and culture is the role of individual responsibility and personal lifestyle. In the end, our individual behavior as "consumers" adds up to the crisis of sustainability, but the causes of this crisis are far from simple.
Propertyless and under-capitalized Americans sense and experience that they are less secure with prospects for good incomes that they can rely on to support themselves and their families, but they feel helpless to do anything about their plight and continue to struggle on day by day, month by month.
City life can be stressful at times and expensive always, but at least you can take solace in having a small carbon footprint. Tiny apartments to heat and cool, no driving -- of course you're not using as many resources as your suburban and rural brethren! But a new study suggests that urbanites shouldn't be quite so smug.
In today's culture, capitalism drives our consumption machine. It's all instant gratification, all the time -- and that's when everything else in our life is smooth sailing. When a condition as complex and unnerving as PTSD enters the equation, it makes an overly abundant vice like overconsumption even more tempting.