Marriages mean suggested donations, solicitations, and registries. People do not take care of their aging parents or growing children. People still walk around with price tags and labels on their clothing. Rich people use social media to show off their money. Fat people use social media to show off their decadent meals.
I know it wasn't always this way. What happened in the world that made this a dominant feature of our culture?
Celebrity culture. Everybody thinks they're a reality star. Hell, even poor people flaunt their money on social media. Whenever I see people wearing top labels or driving a Benz or a BMW I no longer think class and achievement. I just think "There goes another attention whore who spends they don't have." Those things mean nothing anymore. These days restraint is a sign of taste, intellect, and success.
[quote] Fat people use social media to show off their decadent meals
everybody takes pictures of their food now. It's become a national past time
Americans are not unique in shilling at weddings. In fact, they aren't even in the top 10 of worst offenders.
The Internet dumbed down Americans.
I hate the constant food photos.
R3, just accept that you aren't R1 today.
Poor people expect others to subsidize their shortcomings.
Don't even try to act like this is just an American thing. Canada, the UK, and Ireland are just as crass now too.
1. "Reality" television. "Survivor" specifically entrained the masses to be selfish, cold and manipulative.
2. Facebook. Home of the slaves.
3. PTSD from the 9/11 psy op and its ensuing lies. From that point on, it was all Paris Hilton, coke snortin' celebs, pussy shots getting out of limos, bad art (Shepard Fairey), bad music (fucking Farrell) , corporate "underground" culture like Coachella (owned by right wing) and the hipsters who grew up poisoned by it.
And here we are
This is what happens when you ask the world to send you its tired, its cheap, and its tacky.
[quote]Whenever I see people wearing top labels or driving a Benz or a BMW I no longer think class and achievement. I just think "There goes another attention whore who spends they don't have." Those things mean nothing anymore. These days restraint is a sign of taste, intellect, and success.
Restraint has always been the hallmark of taste, intellect, success and - most importantly - of having been properly raised and educated. It doesn't require piles of money except for the education and a bright, hard working kid can usually get a scholarship.
The shallow wanna-bees insistence on flaunting their bad taste is useful. They give themselves away without uttering a word.
I think Facebook and the internet in general has revealed people's insecurities but also made it acceptable to just display them without shame.
I left FB a while ago, but while I was on it, I was surprised that even people I'd admired began showing off and bragging in ways that I found slightly disillusioning.
It's always existed. Look at Victorian society. They had different ways to show off wealth and status.
Look at how people in the 1950s acquired "starter homes", with the understanding that they would be upgrading and upgrading.
And what exactly do you bring to the table, OP?
Evil rich sociopaths.
Never have had a Facebook account, never will have one. I'm not interested. My rather shallow older sister tried to get me to join several years ago.
But I think American crassness didn't start with Facebook, it probably slowly started in the 70's.
Sillies. Obviously you haven't read Tocqueville. American crassness "probably slowly started in the 70's," indeed.
Unless by some chance you meant the 1670s?
Didn't think so.
I'll take the social democracies of The Continent, thank you.
Exp: the Swiss voted on a referendum to raise the health care premiums of younger individuals so that the burden would be lessened on seniors. The referendum passed.
Something like this would never happen in the USA. Never.
No bridle on commerce, capital or development. Urban, then suburban, centralization, depletion of rural populations. Anchorless population of unsecured labor force, often relocating, making culture content and context poor, thin from lowest common denominator among diffuse population.
Capitalism becoming cruder and crueller, and the dumbing down of society which further enables the cruelty of the current capitalist system.
The media is all about attack and putting others down - from "news" commentators rudely shouting over people and cutting them off to whatever contestant being thrown off some reality show with great excitement and fanfare and cruelty. And the "good" HBO shows which are full of violence and killing.
Nothing thoughtful or kind on TV, no subtlety and the internet is full of anonymous people spewing hate and declaring everyone "fugly" and everything a "fail."
They put idiots TV all the time - cheap programming, but ideological, too. Look, stupid people - you be stupid, too. Don't criticize or even think about the society we live in and what it is turning into.
And all the brainless shopping that is supposed to make up for the loss of intelligence and humanity from HGTV, to Facebook bragging to food food food everywhere. Eat, don't think and feel superior if you are eating something more expensive.
[quote]Poor people expect others to subsidize their shortcomings
So do banks that get taxpayer-funded bailouts.
Looking back to some (mythical) golden time when everything was so much better is the heart of conservatism.
Technology has ruined everything
I'm 46 and when I was 20 there weren't any computers. We worked 8 hours then went home and enjoyed ourselves and had a life outside work. There wasn't any e-mail or stupid requests from co-workers by computer. We didn't even have answering machines at work. If you didn't have an item in stock the customer knew they would have to wait. Now you have to jump through damn hoops to find the item and have it delivered to the customer as fast as humanly possible
You could afford to buy a house and a car. Even if you only had an average job and/or never went to college. No one ran up thousands of dollars in credit card debt. People lived within their means
Now with all the technology developed in the last 25 yrs, everyone wants everything now. No one has time for anything. No one knows how or cares to pay attention for longer than a few minutes. That's why you have assholes who come into your business and refuse to get off their cellphone while you are waiting on them. Some of them get pissed if you ask them a question because it requires them to have to stop talking for a few seconds. Every one wants instant gratification because they have the mentality of 2 year old babies. They can't wait for anything, they only think of themselves and they throw a tantrum if they don't get their own way.
It began to go downhill when middle class people started imitating their "betters." BITD(yes, I'm old) Rich and well-connected people, who took great pains to remain anonymous, did what rich and well-connected people did: Had fabulous homes; hosted parties that we could only imagine;went on vacations to places we could only dream about, etc. etc.etc..... And they did these things because they had the wherewithal TO do them. Hoi polloi would occasionally get a whiff of these enviable goings-on, but there it stayed. Money was tight, not as tight as now certainly, but they didn't buy or do things if they didn't have the money in their pockets. Debt was a shame, and you felt guilty if you didn't pay your bills on time.The first general purpose credit cards were for people who HAD money, but didn't feel like carting it around with them. They got their bills at the end of the month, paid them off, and started fresh. Middle class folks saw the beauty of not carrying a lot of cash,and began to do what they couldn't absolutely afford. Gone was the shame of debt, the desire to save,and the thought of personal restraint. It snowballed, and they never looked back. More goodies = more debt, but they weren't bothered owing lots of money anymore. And why? Well, if THOSE people had nice things, and I'm just as good as they are, then I should have nice things too. "Keeping up with the Jones's" was/is an on-going phenom, and one from which we will likely not recover. The feudal system that we are descending into really doesn't allow for it.
I think American Anti-Intellectualism plays a very big role. It's become a badge of honor to show how ignorant you are about almost anything. To disparage anything deemed "pretentious" (ie, intellectually demanding in any small way). Team sports are the religion of US culture (more than in other countries). Many American lives revolve around the latest game or celebrity marriage/breakup, etc. Ignorance prevails
Johnson's War on Poverty got people used to depending on the government for sustenance. It's been getting worse ever since.
It's definitely the celebrity focus and the commercialism. Everything is assigned a monetary value.But, we've lost our inhibitions, too. Proper etiquette and dress codes, and a general sloppiness abound.
My father once told me, his father would never have a drink with him, even after he'd reached 21. He said it wasn't until I was born, his first grandchild, that he would have a celebratory drink with my Dad. It was not only a point of etiquette.
It was, in Grandfather's eyes, about respecting your elders. You may say he was full of shit, but so what.
Today, we have 50 yr. olds acting like they're 20. There are women out here pushing 70, who dye their hair and hang out at clubs with ten pounds of make up smeared on their faces, hoping to score with some you guy. It's pretty scary.
R33? Like you old queens aren't doing that.
The lack of etiquette and loss of inhibitions is correct. The masses didn't get the real grown-up things like control of their lives, but they get let it all hang out all the time - and think they are free.
Love this thread.
Like R28 mentioned, we live in a culture of instant gratification and little restraint.
As R25 mentioned, there is a cruel undertone to most mainstream media as well - almost gladiatoral.
The middle class has been destabilized and, as R21 mentioned, populations have become more transient - moving from city to city looking for employment. There's no sense of heritage, permanence, or tradition anymore. The family structure has dissolved in a similar way.
So many good points on this thread.
r26 has nailed it.
The wealthy also expect their rear ends to be funded. One farming family I know used to receive payments from the government not to farm, and they were darn well off!
It's not distinctly American. The cultural change (or slide downward, or collapse) is even more pronounced in the UK.
I think if you went back several decades ago people would still have been complaining about American culture being crass.
[quote]The first general purpose credit cards were for people who HAD money, but didn't feel like carting it around with them. They got their bills at the end of the month, paid them off, and started fresh. Middle class folks saw the beauty of not carrying a lot of cash, and began to do what they couldn't absolutely afford.
I don't disagree with anything you say here, but I think the banks who issue the credit cards bear some responsibility for the way this turned out, with their outrageous interest rates.
The end of the age of oil will deal a serious blow to all of this. No oil = no more tech goodies. And don't start about "green tech", because that depends on the existence of oil.
This is turning out to be one of DL's better threads. Many good points being raised here.
R9 A friend lived in Ireland for six years and came back with the worst manners. He is literally glued to his smartphone every waking moment, and apparently feels that as long as he explains to me what he's doing on his phone, it's perfectly alright to keep doing it. Oh, and he's 66 y.o.
[quote]I think the banks who issue the credit cards bear some responsibility for the way this turned out, with their outrageous interest rates.
How are banks to blame for people's lack of self-control???
I'm no friend of banks but you're just being silly. People weren't FORCED to use credit cards.
[quoteMarriages mean suggested donations, solicitations, and registries.
I agree that the first two are wrong, but haven't marriage registries been standard for decades now? I'm 44 and I never remember anything otherwise. My partner and I are planning a wedding right now and we're foregoing the registry (and NOT soliciting or suggesting anything)...we just want people to give us what they want, if they choose to. However, I've already had a half dozen friends and family ask why we're not registering somewhere, and all of them seem perplexed and a bit panicked when I tell them that we're not. It seems a lot of guest guests expect a registry and feel lost without one.
People wearing pj pants to go shopping. Shorts in the workplace. No one dresses up anymore and I believe this has something to do with behavior. Dressing up seems to mean a clean polo shirt or pressed blue jeans. And society has most certainly become cruder post the 1950's, IMHO.
For example, I watched one episode oh Honey Boo Boo and once was more than enough. It seems that Honey Boo Boo , her mom and sisters refer to their vagina's as biscuits. I will neve eat another biscuit. Crass, crude trash and it is apparently popular. Hell, that idiot Baba Wawa proclaimed H. Boo Boo as one of her most fascinating people of 2013.
It happened when children were elevated to little gods by their parents, who started to want to BE children themselves. (As opposed to a time past when children wanted to be adults and adults wanted to be adults.)
Whatever happened to class?
General crassness and cruelty. This extends from the lower class slob who wears PJs to go shopping and yaps at full volume on their phone up to the CEO who has no sense of shame in cutting 1000s of jobs to save his bottom line.
Cruelty and shamelessness are the order of the day.
[quote]Exp: the Swiss voted on a referendum to raise the health care premiums of younger individuals so that the burden would be lessened on seniors. The referendum passed.
Something like this would never happen in the USA. Never.
You have no clue what you are talking about. We've ALREADY done it. Social Security and Medicare are massive transfers of wealth from the young to the old.
Because old people VOTE.
^^bump^^ for a great thread and thoughtful responses..
It's worse than ever now because we are so plugged in. The media has won. It's everywhere, even in our pockets. I can't be with friends walking, playing a game or watching a movie without losing them to their phones at least once for a five minutes or more every hour.
We are isolated people. We see the world through a screen instead of raising our heads and looking forward.
The only thing that could possibly change this world is a massive disaster.
Yeah, I think R52 is right. What would never happen is old people voting for, say, debt forgiveness for student loans, because the old bastards won't retire and can't understand why we couldn't work part time to afford college like they did.
We live in the world the Baby Booming Bastards made.
Wow, R52 is so right.
R53, you don't need to bump a thread 2 minutes after the last response.
“The line between the public life and the private life has been erased, due to the rapid decline of manners and courtesy. There is a certain crudeness and crassness that has suddenly become accepted behavior, even desirable.”
The serious answer to your question, OP: Vatican Council II
I agree with r10 but want to throw the Anna Nicole smith show in as a kickoff for the truly trashtastic becoming mainstream acceptable.
Sex tape mania too.
The serious answer to your question, OP: Vatican Council II.
The normalization of pedophilia in media, thanks largely to the Disney corporation. Interscope too, but an eerie majority of the coked out, deactivating zombie teen whores started at Disney.
Britney on her knees ready to suck dick on her first album cover at...fifteen?
Honey Boo Boo AKA JonBeignet, wearing make up like a hooker, shaking her six year old pelvis
To Catch A Predator, which despite a sheen of vindictive moralizing, is essentially pre-porn for the pedophiles at half-bone who actually watch it
and now Miley.
I agree with R31--- 'I think American Anti-Intellectualism plays a very big role. It's become a badge of honor to show how ignorant you are about almost anything. To disparage anything deemed "pretentious" (ie, intellectually demanding in any small way)'.
In the past two decades, this has become so true.
It's almost considered embarrassing to have a good vocabulary.
A lot of what passes for worthwhile discussions on the News and the media in general, are void of any real substance.
I also think that big businesses have infiltrated our media to an insane extent, with blatant product placement getting way out of hand.
If the goal of every media outlet is to convince people to buy stuff then, yeah, the content will continue to be dumbed down
In my day, Facebook was a tome we made out of skin. Whole different many to the word "Poke!".
[quote]What would never happen is old people voting for, say, debt forgiveness for student loans.
Why should debts, taken on voluntarily, be forgiven? If students are so stupid that they don't realize they'll have to pay back the money they borrow, they didn't belong in college in the first place.
OP, if you think these examples are the worst of what this country has done, think again.
Hey dumb fuck at R52 good luck with Obama Care. What time is your country shutting down end Sept?
R66, if we can bail out banks, we can help out students.
They did what they were told to do - get an education, improve yourself. 99.9% of students aren't acting irresponsibly or on a whim.
You can't bankrupt student loans. You can run up huge debt on credit cards due to shopping and even gambling and the government says you can bankrupt that. But not student debt.
Let me guess, mommy and daddy paid for your education.
While the decline of the USA has various causes, for me the the signal event was the death of Harry Cohn in 1958. Like him or not, his death signaled the end of American's Golden Age of film, as well as the end of America's dominance of the world in a way. Though he had a bad rep during his life, I doubt he would approve of the stuff passing for art or entertainment appearing on the big screen nowadays. When the actors tried to be producers, it was like the lunatics taking control of the asylum.
When TV replaced the studio system and print media....
When men stopped wearing hats and women girdles....
Wasn't Harry Cohn a rapist?
Cohn did harass Gloria Henry. She was shut out of the industry and only got the role of Alice Mitchell in Dennis the Menace after Cohn died.
R70 and tremendous greed played into the demise of the studio system. For instance agent/producer Charlie Feldman was instrumental in bringing about a new Hollywood formula. Too much to say about him here - we need an entire thread on this guy - but his method, to lure stars out of the studio system and bundle his clients in projects, then produce films himself, in my estimation was the beginning of the end of Golden Hollywood.
Columbia back in the day was Harry's greenhouse. He created the two orchids---Rita Hayworth and Kim Novak. They flourished in the greenhouse but wilted once they left.
It's funny because Americans are both crass and puritanical at the same time.
[r75] is that why Europeans and Asians appear so decadent to Americans, while they view us as hypocrites?
I always liked the image of Americans in post-war Europe as innocent schoolboys in the decayed mansion of an incredibly depraved, 1000 year old countess.
Rudeness and offensive behavior as entertainment has bred a large number of people who think manners/politeness is "PC", hypersensitive, and not being real.
From all the history and biographies I've seen covering US history, the peak of US dominance economically, militarily and culturally was that "Indian Summer" period between the end of WW2 and the beginning of the Korean war. We need a thread on that five-year period alone. What wonderful movies and novels they made!
While the US continued to dominate, culturally, cracks appeared during the 1950s.
Method acting to me ruined what was a between the wars period when true film acting emerged from its stagey silent film period. We went from fake Mid-Atlantic to real articulated US English and ended up with the mumblings of the Method crowd.
The antitrust action against the big theater chains reduced the number of films made.
Off the subject, but whenever I play Glenn Miller at the workplace, all the under 30s are enthralled. They always ask why they don't compose music like that anymore. Amazing.
[quote] Exp: the Swiss voted on a referendum to raise the health care premiums of younger individuals so that the burden would be lessened on seniors. The referendum passed.
Actually this happened in America. It's called the Medicare Prescription Plan. And we didn't get to vote on it. Bu$hco actually passed this big handout to the drug companies. Young people are paying for this program. A program that no senior citizen ever contributed a penny towards. They contributed to a plan that did NOT include prescription coverage. The Medicare Prescription Plan cost taxpayers a TRILLION dollars a year
Our contributions went up to pay for this plan
Americans are not especially crass, though there are exceptions. OP has a stick up his ass, longing for a past that never existed.
[quote] It's worse than ever now because we are so plugged in. The media has won. It's everywhere, even in our pockets. I can't be with friends walking, playing a game or watching a movie without losing them to their phones at least once for a five minutes or more every hour.
I can not stand going into a restaurant and seeing tables full of families and almost all of them are on their phones. Even the kids sit their texting. If this is how they act in public at a restaurant can you imagine how they act in private?
When I was a kid and someone called at meal time my parents would tell them we were eating and to call back later. we all sat down and ate as a family. Essentially we were able to pay attention to each other for an entire 15 minutes
Ghetto culture hasn't helped. In the 1980s kids started seeing en masse the coolness of ignorance, flashiness and violence via the mainstreaming of hip hop. The white corporate record companies have force fed us images of degradation and mindless consumption as the pinnacle of American life.
Older people called Swing "jungle music," and you probably know what they thought of Rock n' Roll. I don't see the allure of hip hop, but given the past I'm reluctant to blame it for the decline and fall of American civilization.
R83, I don't think its crying wolf. Swing music didn't actively promote ignorance and violence as a means to an end.
[quote]Swing music didn't actively promote ignorance and violence as a means to an end.
It did to the establishment. If they were wrong then, you can be just as wrong now. What you are really talking about is fashion/style, not the promotion of violence or ignorance.
[quote]Americans are not especially crass, though there are exceptions. OP has a stick up his ass, longing for a past that never existed.
I am only 29 years old, and I remember when friends shared meals together and didn't use their phone while together. I remember when people on TV were famous for having something at least resembling talent or achievement. I even remember a time when people's politics were less reactionary. 9/11 made the people I know do a 180 politically. I remember when military members had the decorum to not bring hazing, political opinions, and war trophy videos into the public arena via social media. The world has changed a lot.
The launching of GREED during the Reagan years.
It bugs me that people nowadays seem to think that snarkiness is a hallmark of intelligence, when in fact it's just sarcasm for the dull, unremarkable and witless.
Yes, I agree, R89. And they all do it. It has become the (grotesque) norm.
I agree with most of the posts on this thread.
I just wish all the crassness would go away.
r90 It will never go away, because familiarity breeds contempt. There are no secrets anymore, we know everything(almost) about everything and everyone. Except for the things that really matter, chief of which is how we are being manipulated into a system that was spawned almost 40 years ago. I DO wonder if the folks who made the original reality shows ever had an inkling as to what they would morph into? How so many are mesmerized, and cannot wait for the next installment of something that has been parsed down to the smallest detail, in the hopes of swaying more and more people into what they wish us to be? These competition shows are disgusting, but,that is what capitalism has become. The never-ending fight for jobs and profits and status, all to the detriment of the middle class which will disappear within the next generation or two. We had a good run from post-WWII to the mid-70's, a mere 30 years. We thought it'd last forever, because most people were benefitting, and we were satisfied with the increases we achieved. Then it all changed.....
The shift from capitalism to hypercapitalism. Money becoming not a means to an end but an end in itself.
When the corporations effectively bought the government, creating the culture whereby the television, music, film and news media are all geared toward profit at any cost we lost civilization. There is a whole generation that has grown up with the idea that respect for others is to be despised, intelligence is to be repressed, misogyny and homophobia are to be encouraged and the epitome of personal triumph is to be (in)famous.
The current symptoms of this disease are the likes of the Kardashians, the Real Housewives franchise, in fact mostly all 'reality' television.
Christian extremists have gained a lot of ground where people are looking for an antidote to the tsunami of greed and sheer inhumanity that engulfs us. In the past the extreme right were considered the poster children for stupidity, now they have gained the mainstream.
Unless there's a HUGE fight back against the corporate sewage that passes for culture we are headed for the end.
I have recently seen people I once thought were cool become almost orgasmic from being two-faced.
But I suspect we are all at trash critical mass and some kind of event will restore what we think we lost...just like 9/11 took so much away
OP is on a website that calls women cunts and presents holes. LOL
I know, R95. This thread is filled with FUCKING HYPOCRITES.
Old, mean and tone-deaf hypocrites.
Yeah, but this is one of the more intelligent threads.
We're just honest. Sorry if the rest of you can't take it. We're not being crass.
t e l e v i s i o n
The same thing that happened in a lot of countries after the politics of Reagan, Thatcher etc. Here in New Zealand we had those same right wing policies in the mid 80s and that changed the country. Basically they were all the policies that said profit is more important than people.
Pretty much it just created a generation or two who are completely self interested.
Yeah, it's television, then internet
and Reganomics, then globalism
= crap crap crap sewer toilet
World War II was a powerful slap in the face for our species. Millions of survivors set about to repopulate the world, and children were viewed as precious beyond measure. They were spoiled and not made to do what they didn't want to do. They grew up without discipline or an any appreciation for refinement.
They have reproduced. Their children have reproduced. What has resulted is pretty much feral.
The original(I've not seen the remake) version of the film "Rollerball" perfectly encapsulates what has happened to society. That film was the logical extension of the old Roman dictum "Bread and circuses." The dumbing down and mesmerization of the public is just what TPTB have always wanted. Illy and under educated people, doing subsistence work, with just enough pay that it all has to be dumped back into the economy, ASAP. And to complete the indoctrination? Reality shows, or at least, THEIR version of reality, which in turn becomes ours.Our struggle for existence mirrors what is found on those shows. "That is all ye know, and all ye need to know." The point of no return has been passed, hope you all enjoyed the ride?
R4 is correct. But it is capitalism with a weak base of culture unlike in europe as R20 points out. america has always been crass, even before the internet.
Most of the immigrants that came or were sent here were underpriviliged lower classes with little to lose by coming here. then the immigrants from various backgrounds had little in common except money.
this made for a rabid capitalism that produced a shallow materialist and consumerist population that is very suggestible to capitalism extolling business, greed and moneymaking as the ideals of society.
America is the ultimate capitalist society, putting money over cultural values never gets you anywhere in the long haul.
The internet is a great source of information if you use it for that. If anything it is about exchanging information that mainstream media would never allow to happen.
I think internet and social media is changing societies in a way never seen before. Governments have no control over what is being talked about and that is always a good thing. More info is always better than less info.
It is not just America this has happened in. It seems to be the inevitable result of putting profit above all else and assuming the invisible hand of market forces will provide.
So every year we seem to make material gains (cell phones, nicer cars etc) but pay for that with intagible losses. Our working lives get bigger and more demanding while our private lives seem to shrink to those moments before and after sleep. We are a society plagued with the lethargy and depression of the sleep deprived and overstressed.
Meanwhile the invisible hand of market forces can only provide us with quick fixes like anti-depressants and fast food...because a overworked and powerless populace is exactly what market forces need.
[quote]More info is always better than less info.
Depends on the quality of the information. Water still generally seeks its own level. Most people want agreement, not debate. The internet has just made it easy for them to ally.
But I love booking flights on line so it's probably worth it.
Which mainstream media is still about quality information. Fox, Murdoch and Co make sure we are being misinformed and dumbed down.
Lack of good education, fake idols, capitalism, corrupt politicians, aggressive and manipulative mass media.
The gays and the blacks ruined America.
Once you promote women and minorities to full human status, you're bound to see more of former-invisible people doing things which you don't approve. They get to fuck up as well and they get to learn from it.
Add to that a false recovery in 2004 creating another Depression in 2008 and you have a bunch of unemployed broke people walking around in a daze.
Intellectual stimulation and good manners come when you have hope of security in rent, food, and utilities.
Also, this is a baby country that still can't behave in a mature manner towards other countries. I'd say the USA is like that one kid in school who had a big bag of weed and used it to bully everyone trying to get stoned.
I love technology but the more of it we have leads to the more we speak we speak to strangers. And, when walking around, we speak to strangers by displaying to strangers and the world at large (and small) what we buy. And because more and more are becoming strangers than not, we compete with all to have more than others. Because having more than others means we have as great if not greater value than the rest. Are we worthy? And, short-term, it makes us feel better because when we were very small, we were told by loved ones face-to-face that we were born lacking something very important. If we are born already lacking something inside maybe it then can be found outside. So let's buy it even though we didn't know we already bought it. We bought it when we were too young to know better.
Remember Sosh 101? It's "anomie." Durkheim. Explains it all.