Challenging American Consumerism Just In Time For The Holidays

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Last year Americans spent $456.2 billion during the holiday season, and this year sales are predicted to rise 4 percent to $474.5 billion**.

Have you ever wondered what happens to stuff from holidays past?

A new online film details costs and consequences of consumer culture
as the holiday shopping season kicks into high gear.

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Yeah, we thought that title would grab you. Although we can’t take credit for it, it’s all thanks to the kids over at Rideamigos.com. Haven’t heard of them? They’re a new carpooling website that’s all about connecting peeps, reducing pollution, and splitting rising prices between riders?

Devised by one guy whose “commute sucks”

I have soap on the mind. I love all health and beauty products but soap has always been my #1 most-purchased beauty product. I have favorite soaps but lately I’ve been rethinking my big box store soap purchases. I’m not entirely sure what goes in to making mass produced soap but I am realizing that organic soap seems to be made with love, passion and bicycles…what?!

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Justsoap.com’s soap line

In my eternal quest for the perfect soap, I turned to the internet because I wanted to see if my old standards would come up or if I’d discover new soap companies by typing in “ECO SOAP”. Wouldn’t you know that the first link that comes up is for www.justsoap.com and their company makes soap with a bicycle! A guy literally sits on a bike and churns the ingredients to make “Lemongrass Ginger”, “Lavender Rosemary” and “Sage Fir” soap! Haute couture soaps made by a Huffy. Well, actually – the bike looks pretty complex but you have to really appreciate someone who creates delectable soaps while conducting his own spin class. The soap is $2.95 per bar, a bargain at any price…

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Swimming is such a splendid form of exercise and so perfectly adapted to summer that the increase in swimming pools in all communities is to be welcomed.

But Chlorine used to disinfect swimming pools is a health hazard and may trigger asthma in children. Among adults it has been linked with other health problems including bladder and rectal cancer and may increase the risk for coronary heart disease.

One Year Countdown to Beijing Olympic Games The Chinese capital of Beijing is adopting eco-friendly technologies in transportation, power supply, water and waste management to ensure a "green" Olympic Games, according to the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology. Beijing plans to use 100 hybrid-electric vehicles

READ MORE

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Now you can easily do your part to help cut America’s dependence on fossil fuels, including foreign oil by choosing the type of power you purchase. In NY this can be achieved by selecting GREEN Power and WIND Power from ConEdison Solutions.

  • GREEN Power is composed of 65% run-of-the-river hydro and 35% wind power(generated from regional wind and low-impact hydropower sources).
  • WIND Power is composed of electricity exclusively generated from 100% wind power.

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Indian Farmer

I recently had the pleasure of reading a truly inspiring story entitled, “Sowing Hope” about an amazing humanitarian named Joseph Curiale who is doing tremendous work in India. After having viewed a disturbing piece back in March on CNN about the thousands of South Indian farmers who have committed suicide because of a 7 year drought and their mounting debts, Los Angeles’ own, Joe Curiale, made the commitment to make a difference.

Due to the drought, more than 150,000 farmers have died countrywide and the numbers only continue to grow. As Joe mentions on his blog, with the desperate situation, many farmers feel that suicide is their only escape, leaving their young widows vulnerable to harassment from moneylenders, “…some of whom charge up to 450% interest (annually) and often demand partial repayment by raping the widows… An Indian film director had told me of one village where the moneylender would rape the women right in front of their husbands, further pushing them to suicide…”