Sunday, November 21, 2010

Austerity v. Frugality

CNN today has an opinion piece titled "Frugal Living is the Road to New Prosperity." Here is an excerpt:

Austerity comes from the Greek verb "to dry." It is sour and astringent. Self-flagellation is the order of the day...Austerity is all about cutting back the public sector in an attempt to reinvigorate the private sector.

Frugality is about shifting our attention, and our income, away from restless consumption and toward long-term saving. Spending less, yes, but investing more -- both in the public and the private sphere. And in our rush to rebuild financial markets, we need to pause long enough to make them fit for the purpose...

Frugality comes from the Latin. It speaks of bearing fruit. Of our ability to flourish, not through relentless material profligacy, but through a due attention to season and cycle and the processes of maturation. Austerity presents us with an arid world, stripped bare of meaning, devoid of hope. Frugality offers us a way to re-enchant the future.

Read the full article at CNN.