Free «“The Story of Stuff”» Essay Sample

The social problems in the story of stuff by Leonard were clearly articulated by the author. In the story of stuff by Annie Leonard’s, we are told much about the world with the social and environmental impacts of “our obsession with stuff”. Further, it tells us more about the people that we are and what we term as vital to us. Not judgmental or preachy, Leonard’s creates another new way to think on the choices we always make in our lives and how they are connected to everything and everyone (Michael, 132). This book is about the community, and how it creates one, mostly on how to make choices, both political and personal that will lead to safer, healthier and more sustainable world for everyone. The story also speaks about personal analysis and stories. The book discusses about the solutions and responsibilities to in creating more sustainable life for the planet and ourselves. The book is not anti-profit or anti-stuff. The message in the book is that, life is more than stuff and profits that are honored and appreciated all that we have. Most of the businesses need to make more money for the as we all do and it is all about life. The concept in the story is that of “the real cost” while it is nuts on how much stuff most people buy and they cannot afford, the most crazy thing is paying much more to the real cost of anything they buy.

In the story of stuff, Annie Leonard explains that, with the sobering and also yet hopeful clarity, the planet is overheating from or in part of massive and over consumption by a relative small earth’s human inhabitant. The paper discusses about the social, cultural and environmental effects. It elaborates more on how environment can be affected by the people’s activities. The social activities are also talked about in the book; the author speaks on how social factors affect the economic and environmental factors. It concludes with recommendation on how to improve the environment and social factors all over the world.

As the consumer social and culture problems spread worldwide, United States held a unique place in a scheme that Annie dated back the decisions that were made at the outset of the industrial revolution. In some major countries, individuals chose to be taking advantage of the increased productivity in a reduction of the work week and take more vacations, enjoying more of their time with friends and family. However, in America, each and every gain was based on material gain, and into more stuff. Instead of gathering in more freedom and happiness from the advanced technology, the people of America buried themselves in ever accelerating quest for latest goodies, year by year, generation by generation, the American have accumulated more goods and also consumed more resources from the world thus making them more miserable. This is a problem which is perpetuated all throughout the day by each and everything from the means of entertainment to the manner of education. Whereby, once, we are practicing the keeping of the Joneses through comparison of the neighbors and ourselves, the television provides a window of the consumer paradise whereby the part-time baristas posse’s prodigious Manhattan apartments while the works in the office dress in the latest designer duds. Therefore, we are not happy to compare possessions anymore with the couple down the street; first, we have Angelina and Brad to compete with. We do not need what most parents possessed or what our friends had, we always want what is owned by Oprah. The vertical expansion of the target group means that we will never reaching goals and stay with the feeling of failure. The only way out to the inadequacy is to go shopping for much stuff. According to the author, social factors are essential in our lives. They directly affect our day to day life the main solution for the negative effects of the social factor are; controlling our consuming styles, the author advice on the ways of consumption. Avoid unnecessary spending due to the pressure in the society. Also, the social problems in the world are controlled by and individual, therefore, the author advice on the proper manner of the consumption.

According to the Leonard, shopping is becoming one of the key picture of ourselves to  the extent that, not only did president George, Bush urged us to go shopping by ourselves out of peril in 9/11, but also the environmental activists often turned to the mall. The most frequent advice that is dispensed to the people who are trying to behave in a responsible manner is to buy green. This advise not only encourages the still more intake as one of the means in addressing  problems regarding over consumption, but it often ignores the forces in the market which have delivered the green products to the local mall, the forces that in few occasions have concerns for resources of the people who are damaged along the way. As the key worry settles on the current downturn in the economy, even the techniques used in measuring problems will reflect on the distorted shopaholic way of life or culture. An example is primal forest, when kicking the people out of the forest when they have been living there for generations or years, and then slice down the trees into small pieces after that, soak the pieces into toxic chemicals, then turn the pieces into the disposable products and finally ship the unnecessary remains off to landfill. On the local paper business page or the television’s glitzy stock channel, each step mentioned has a similar name known as growth.

However, on the first part of Annie’s film, she is devoted and describes the problems of the current unsustainable culture of disposing goods. It is with the final part that needs particular attention. Instead of stopping with distressing news, Annie went direct into the good news; she asserts, “We can change”. In her description, the most engaging part of the societies is when everyone is able to find their place in flow and same dynamic implying that each one is positioned to assist in changing the way things work (Sowell, 35). The issues on the environment, economics and social justice contribute into making of the change toward a society that is sustainable and fair. There is the availability of many ways of inserting yourself in the process as their products on shelves of local sturdy box store. To add on the translation of the current film and handing her presentation, Annie has another film in mind. This film will focus on the green arrow. The arrow part of the virtuous cycle in the end of the film is where all have to engage or participate in the protection of the remaining resources of the limited planet. To get there will take more courage that a very few of the current candidates showed.

According to the story of the stuff, Leonard talks about solutions to the environmental, cultural and social problems. Annie speaks about the use of resources in large quantities.  According to her statistics, fifty thousand acres of trees are lost each day globally due to deforestation thus making the paper, houses, furniture, particularly in the U.S Sowell (35). Each and every person use more than 200 gallons of water for lawns per day when the season for growing comes. To produce a single cotton t-shirt, it takes 256 gallons of water in production of hazardous waste from mining that gets dumped into the waters. She tells us that it needs no one to tell us on the hazards accompanied by drilling of oil.

In the same story, she closes the gaps between the products and the origins, and habits of consumption put into perspective. She asserted that, we consume resources in a faster way than earth reproduces them. According to Leonard, this is rooted back to love for short term satisfaction and disregard for long-term results for our consuming habits (Willis & Elmer, 64). We always buy things to make us feel happy, and when we are done with the product, be it normal or broken, we always want it to go away. This leads us to either shove it underground or burn it, both contaminates the air, land and water with toxins, and neither of them makes the toxins go away. Further, when we decide that we are not dealing with trash at homes, boatloads of American waste are always sent to different regions in the world, regularly under the guise of it to be recycled there asserts Leonard. The theory of trying to make something go away seems to be Leonard’s biggest pet peeves, and also mine. This book emphasizes on the training of ourselves and pushes trash to minds concluding that it is either we care for it, or the other people will. No one will want to always consider what actually may happen to the trash when hitting the landfill, for it may become uncomfortable.

Also, the chemicals are exposed by Leonard in every day’s household items, also, what the chemicals do to humans body is discussed, for instance, reproductive problems, cancer risks and the brains function. According to her, one third of products for personal care always have cancer ingredients links for everything we consume from sunscreen to furniture leaches toxins. To prove that, she underwent testing for identification of toxins in the body where the toxins came from was her main aim of her test. The environment is hugely affected by the consumption features. When we control environmental pollution, and the way we consume products, this will result to protection of our environment. Also, the author talks about ways to control the pollution of the environment e.g. ensuring proper way of conserving the environment and avoid over production of environmental hazards.

In conclusion, everyone requires being responsible when it comes to protection of the environment. The environment and surrounding might become hazardous when they are not well taken care of. The social and environmental factors are termed as extremely essential elements in human life according to the author. It is upon the reader to ensure that the environmental and social factors are observed. According to the author, it is evidence that, when the above factors are not observed, the negative effects are experienced, and therefore, it advises us to ensure that the environment and the social factors are prioritize in our daily life.


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