CONSUMER ETHICS was created to help us understand how our purchasing power can help or harm the world around us.

Members: 63
Latest Activity: Dec 18, 2014



Anyone who pays attention at all should not be surprised to learn that how we spend our money can profoundly influence social and economic justice, environmental preservation or degradation, animal welfare, and democratic freedoms—especially in third-world countries.

Of course, it is difficult to always be 100% ethical in everything we do. No one lives a blameless life, and in our capitalist culture it is very difficult to monitor and be aware of every injustice that occurs for the sake of profit. Clearly, most economic or consumer injustices take place out of sight – and therefore out of mind for most of us.

Add to that the sheer burden of just getting through the day: working, commuting, doing chores, meeting our obligations and responsibilities, etc., that it seems damn near impossible to be mindful of how, what, and even whom we consume day after day. But doesn’t mean that we can’t try to make better consumer choices as much as possible.

The Consumer Ethics group will allow us to share information that will help us understand and address the above issues and become conscientious consumers by:

  • Identifying unscrupulous corporations that exploit people or animals; or maintain and increase social poverty, inequality, and deprivation
  • Allowing us to share information on fair trade products or services
  • Exposing workplace injustices, sweatshops, and child labor violations
  • Identifying companies that value their employees and customers, that promote living wages and equality and fairness in the workplace, provide safe and healthy working environments, and maintain sustainable business and environmental practices
  • Finding products that are safe to use or healthy to consume
  • Recognizing consumer addiction and consumer propaganda
  • Understanding and voting against economic legislation that is unfair or predatory

We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, militarism and economic exploitation are incapable of being conquered. A nation can flounder as readily in the face of moral and spiritual bankruptcy as it can through financial bankruptcy. -- Dr. Martin Luther King, April, 1967

Discussion Forum

Bangladesh's deadly building collapse: Are cheap clothes to blame?

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by A Former Member May 5, 2013. 2 Replies

What Isn’t for Sale?

Started by A Former Member Apr 29, 2013. 0 Replies

The Corporation with Ethos-a time for change films to see

Started by michele ricketts. Last reply by michele ricketts Apr 29, 2013. 2 Replies

The Center for a New American Dream

Started by A Former Member Apr 29, 2013. 0 Replies

The Consumer Ethics Book List

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by A Former Member Apr 29, 2013. 1 Reply

The true cost of Mother's Day flowers

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Steph S. Apr 25, 2013. 1 Reply

Ethical Consumer Buyer Guides

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Joan Denoo May 30, 2012. 1 Reply

Politics of the Plate: The Price of Tomatoes

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Joan Denoo May 30, 2012. 1 Reply

Ford, Starbucks Among ‘Most Ethical Companies’

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Steph S. May 4, 2012. 1 Reply

A One-for-One Revolution

Started by A Former Member Nov 16, 2011. 0 Replies

We-First Capitalism

Started by A Former Member Sep 24, 2011. 0 Replies

What’s yours is mine

Started by A Former Member. Last reply by Richard C Brown Jul 25, 2011. 1 Reply

The Cigarette Century and Beyond

Started by A Former Member Dec 30, 2010. 0 Replies

The Idea of a Local Economy

Started by A Former Member Dec 29, 2010. 0 Replies

Amazon Kindle: Now you read it, now you don't

Started by Фелч Гроган. Last reply by Daniel W Aug 31, 2010. 2 Replies

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of CONSUMER ETHICS to add comments!

Comment by A Former Member on May 21, 2009 at 8:13am
@Felch: What a horrible way to start out my morning.
Comment by Фелч Гроган on May 21, 2009 at 3:14am
Some pretty awesome glimpses at reality (SFW) -
Comment by A Former Member on May 15, 2009 at 6:52pm
On Their Own Terms

A steady stream of discarded televisions and computers flows into America's landfills. Some of the electronics also end up in shops in Asia that have hazardous working conditions. But now some are heading to a worker-run women's cooperative in Mexico, a business the women started from scratch. Living on Earth’s Ingrid Lobet reports from Fronteras, Mexico.

Listen to the story here.
Comment by A Former Member on May 15, 2009 at 2:14pm
@Dannyisme: I just watched In Debt We Trust last night. It was good, and informative, but not surprising. It just reinforced what I already believed about banks and corporations. I feel vindicated that they brought up the idea of serfdom and feudalism, as I have been saying that about our economy and politics for years.

The only bad things about the documentary were the stupid made-up songs and the dancing graphics they had every so often. That part was really obnoxious and really hurt the impact of the movie, I thought.
Comment by A Former Member on May 9, 2009 at 6:49pm
@Dannyisme: I know, I just don't like watching long movies on the computer, as I do it as work (even on the weekend) cuz I don't have internet access at home.
Comment by A Former Member on May 9, 2009 at 5:56pm
@Sydni: I have put in a request for the Mondanto DVD. Thanks.
Comment by Tedster on May 5, 2009 at 1:09am
I remembered the television adds that used to say, "without chemicals, life itself would not be possible"
Comment by Tedster on May 2, 2009 at 10:16pm
The Corporation has cemented my wondering ideas about what corporations are. Evil.
Comment by A Former Member on May 2, 2009 at 1:00pm
Thanks for that link Danny. I have heard of that before, but forgot about it. Since it is so long, I'm going to request the DVD and watch it at home. I'm a member of that congregation, btw.
Comment by A Former Member on April 17, 2009 at 6:41pm

This is a must-see DVD.

The Corporation
An epic in length and breadth, this documentary aims at nothing less than a full-scale portrait of the most dominant institution on the planet Earth in our lifetime--a phenomenon all the more remarkable, if not downright frightening, when you consider that the corporation as we know it has been around for only about 150 years. It used to be that corporations were, by definition, short-lived and finite in agenda. If a town needed a bridge built, a corporation was set up to finance and complete the project; when the bridge was an accomplished fact, the corporation ceased to be. Then came the 19th-century robber barons, and the courts were prevailed upon to define corporations not as get-the-job-done mechanisms but as persons under the 14th Amendment with full civil rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (i.e., power and profit)--ad infinitum.

The Corporation defines this endlessly mutating life-form in exhaustive detail, measuring the many ways it has not only come to dominate but to deform our reality. The movie performs a running psychoanalysis of this entity with the characteristics of a prototypical psychopath: a callous unconcern for the feelings and safety of others, an incapacity to experience guilt, an ingrained habit of lying for profit, etc. We are swept away on a demented odyssey through an altered cosmos, in which artificial chemicals are created for profit and incidentally contribute to a cancer epidemic; in which the folks who brought us Agent Orange devise a milk-increasing drug for a world in which there is already a glut of milk; in which an American computer company leased its systems to the Nazis--and serviced them on a monthly basis--so that the Holocaust could go forward as an orderly process.

The movie goes on too long, circles too many points obsessively and redundantly, and risks preaching-to-the-choir reductiveness by calling on the usual talking-head suspects--Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Michael Moore. And except for an endlessly receding tracking shot in an infinite patents archive, there's scarcely an image worth recalling. Still, it maps the new reality. This is our world--welcome to it. --Richard T. Jameson

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