Consumerism: A Healthy Diet

Michael Liggins

We Americans are a nation made up of consumers, and that is nothing to be ashamed of. We work hard for our money and spend it on whatever we want. Whether it be on fancy cars imported from Europe or beautiful diamonds from the mines of Africa, we take pleasure in rewarding ourselves. This holiday season is no exception. Americans should feel free to embellish their friends and families with gifts. Even though the spirit of the holiday season reminds us the importance of being thankful, the last two months of the year are more about money rather than anything else. 

According to a study conducted in 2011 by Business Insider, “Americans have doubled how much turkey they purchase in the past 30 years. The average American will eat $17, equivalent to 16 pounds, of turkey over the course of a year.” The study also noted how Americans forked over $15 billion to the turkey farming industry in 2011. 

Currently, the American economy is faced with substantial unemployment rates and sluggish job creation. The holiday season initiates the flow of huge amounts of cash around the country. Businesses can always expect a busy fourth quarter due the internal desire Americans have to spend money on loved ones during the holiday season. This increase in consumer spending activity causes retail and service industries to need more employees, thus putting Americans back to work. 

The National Retail Association released a statement in 2012 in where they estimated that, “Retailers will add 585,000 to 625,000 hires.”  

Retail giant Target, is expected to expand it’s payroll the most by hiring 80,000 to 90,000 new employees come the holiday season. Though Target’s employment wave will be smaller this year than in 2011, it is only due to the fact that the company retained 30% of it’s new-hires for year-round positions.  

The Gallup Poling Organization recently released the results of a national poll in which, “Nearly half of Americans, 46%, still say the economy is in either a recession or a depression… Only 40% said they thought a recovery was underway.” The massive economic activity that takes place during the holidays is crucial in rebuilding America’s financial stability. 

One of the best things about living in a capitalistic society is the having the ability to purchase anything one desires, as long as you have the money to do so. 
Spending and consuming is what makes the United States one of the greatest countries on earth. We work hard to make this country run right, and the holiday season is a time when everyone can afford to spoil themselves for a bit.