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Those of you who have been on Slope for a while probably know that I hold no affection for consumerism. I agree with Thoreau that “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation”, and my view is that men – – and, God knows, women – – try to extinguish that desperation by plunging themselves into debt to buy crap that they don’t really need. It’s simultaneously pathetic and revolting.
Buying stuff ceaselessly has become the American Pastime, and this “lifestyle” is a vapid emptiness we have successfully exported to China, Japan,and all around the world. We are now a globe packed with insatiable consumers, always looking for the next shiny thing to distract them from an existence that would torment them if they deeply examined it.
I’ve been bearish on retail for months, as you know, particularly by focusing on XRT. Today we’re finally starting to see that the gluttonous American consumer is finally running out of steam, as witnessed by the plunge of Macy’s………
As the SlopeCharts of credit card debt clearly shows, the gluttonous appetite for mass-produced garbage is almost limitless in America. Any chastening from the financial crisis is a distant memory at this point.