Battered Mammon

A plague of non-domestic violence has broken out in the country’s shopping malls!  According to mainstream media, retailers are getting ‘battered’ during this Xmas shopping season. In post-modern life this means we are beating these guys up with our absence. The traditional mass shopping orgy has not met retailer expectations. Talk about battered!

And the same mainstream media seriously present this lack of consumer spending as a dire economic problem that we must overcome to get the situation back to normal. Battered brains perhaps? C’mon guys, how about an alternative narrative?  

Consumers have tightened purse strings (despite Scomo’s tax give-aways) and may be easing up on mindless gift-giving. Although gifted ‘experiences’ are the new thing!  Maybe not a profound change in punter mentality, but this hiatus in conspicuous consumption may give us thought for food or v.v. 

Imagine if every shopping mall in the country had a welcoming open library and digital chill lounge as its central focus, without any food outlets. Our fellow citizens could fraternise there, discuss weighty issues of the day, and have foot massages. As the ancient Athenians did. 

These new philosophical spaces could be branded Without Westfield, in a dinky-di version of the Cafe Philo movement out of France.  Comrades, I have a dream!


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