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Finances

Voting Every Day

Every single penny you spend (or don’t) is a vote that tells the world a little bit about you. Every single penny you spend votes for the world you want to live in and the businesses you support.

Do you drive past the stores on Main Street to shop at the Mega-Mart on the outskirts of town? Do you buy trendy crap made in China or handcrafted items made locally? Do you prefer to eat at the locally owned restaurant or the national chain?

Do you prefer to buy something once and keep it forever or do you prefer to replace things when styles change or new features are added?

Do you prefer to spend more money than you make, forking out for interest fees, or do you save your money and possibly invest?

You may not think this matters but it does. It really does.

When you eat at a locally owned restaurant that money stays local. It helps the town you live in. When you buy at the Big Box store that stocks its shelves using foreign factories that money goes to pay wages and buy supplies that help the GDP of another nation.

If you spend your money voting for foreign made items, you’ve no room to complain about the loss of jobs in your own nation. If you use a self-checkout, you’re part of the reason why your cousin will have her cashier job eliminated…

…And if you buy stuff that you know will fall apart in days or weeks or months, you are encouraging companies to sell even more of the same.

I try to be thoughtful about the items I purchase. I avoid credit, voting with my lack of spending in that area against those companies who profit on our profligacy.

Just the other day I voted with my money again. I resent purchasing items that are designed to fail and I like to keep my money inside the nation I call home whenever possible so when the last can opener I purchased promptly failed I decided to take action. I went online and invested in a heavy-duty American made can opener, a device that should last for a decade or longer with proper care.

I was amazed at its heft when I picked up the package. Delighted at the solid construction. This is a can opener that might very well be the last can opener I need to buy if I care for it properly.

That is something I am more than willing to vote for.

What have you voted for with your money lately? Please share your stories in the comments below.