I did this research paper as a milestone for our Economic Fundamentals course. In the class, we studied how the banking system was structured. We watched Inside Job as a source that provides a different perspective on the economic crisis of 2008. This documentary shows faults in the banking system and the effects those faults have on the global economy. I decided to start my research on consumerism in the United States because it is a concept that I am interested in.

This is an excerpt from my paper:

Since the Great Depression, the United States has maintained a policy that suggests consumption and spending are the solutions for economic downturns. According to a study by Chris Edwards, “The events of the 1930s influence economic policy making today. Many people think that we need a big government to prevent, or to reverse, recessions. But the 1930s illustrate that activist policies increase, not decrease, economic instability” (Edwards, 2005). Influencing people into risky investments could prove harmful to the majority, as evident during the economic crisis of 2008. As stated by Horwitz, “We hear this idea all the time in the popular press and casual conversation, particularly during economic downturns… This belief in the power of consumption is also what has guided much of economic policy in the last couple of years, with its endless stream of stimulus packages.” (Horwitz, 2010). This research will look at consumerism from a policy perspective to address the amount of influence it has on people’s lives in the United States. Administrations and financial institutions have manipulated the influence of consumerism, not only to attempt to improve the economy, but to find ways to benefit themselves, which has had repercussions on the global flow of money.

This is the complete research paper: Consumerism: A Study of Influence