Price resistance

Among the best ways to fight inflation is, don’t buy. When prices rise, on anything that is not (for the moment) urgently needed, learn to go without — for a while, or until prices have collapsed. Or perhaps prices won’t collapse, in which case one may learn to live without the now unnecessary product, permanently.

Food is an embarrassment. For the foreseeable present, urbanization has made us all dependent on the shopping mall and pop-up groceries. Wealth does not grow in the vicinity of our homes. Our cities are paved, to prevent gardening; and municipal inspectors arrest the breeders of livestock.

But, now sixty years after her death, I continue to be inspired by my maternal grandmother, who had the benefit of a Gaelic-speaking consciousness. Her own ancestors, from the Isles, had taught her to create, not purchase; and thus to provide for every want — or everything that could be made by human hands. (Truth to tell, some things were obtained by barter.)

The contemporary economy works on the opposite principle, to the convenience of tax collectors. Consumers are trained from early childhood, to be profligate with money, and all other things, by a slimy, oppressive army of advertising agents, sales girls, and Internet Influencers. Even the habit of counting one’s change has been cancelled by progress; now one mindlessly waves a bankcard.

We should refuse to buy anything we see advertised, for in such a case we can know that the cost of promotion is added to the cost of production.

By refusing the many commercial suggestions by which we are confronted, we not only help to put the advertisers out of business, but we free our thoughts for the contemplation of more worthy things.