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Affluenza: Have you caught it?

August 17, 2008

PBS ran a TV series called Affluenza. In 2001, this series was followed up by a book by the same name. Influenza is “a painful, contagious, socially transmitted condition of overload, debt, anxiety, and waste resulting from the dogged pursuit of more.” Creators of Affluenza report that Americans spend an average of 21K on consumer goods per person per year, that we spend more on shoes, jewelry, watches (80B) than on higher education (65B). Many of us do this, not with money we have, but with money we don’t have, with credit. We have plenty of stuff. Consider this story from the book.

In his office, a doctor offers his diagnosis to an attractive, expensively dressed female patient. There’s nothing physically wrong with you,” he says. His patient is incredulous. “Then why do I feel so awful?” she asks. “So bloated and sluggish. I’ve got a big new house, a brand new car, a new wardrobe, and I just got a big raise at work. Why am I so miserable doctor? Isn’t there some pill you can give me?” The doctor shakes his head. “im afraid not,” he replies. “There’s no pill for what’s wrong with you.” What is it doctor? She asks, alarmed. “Affluenza,” he answers gravely. “It’s the new epidemic. It’s extremely contagious. It can be cured but not easily.”

How can it be cured? Does it need to be cured?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. sam melden permalink
    August 17, 2008 7:20 am

    brilliant. it can be cured with the gospel. at the cross we find a call to die. less, not more.

    ohyea, and… thanks for posting about the total church conference. i cant find much about it… but your blog is coming through! thanks.


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