The Politics of Frugality?

politics frugality

Since when did choosing to live a frugal life become a political issue? I don’t make a huge deal about my frugal lifestyle, but when it “shows” in public, more and more people are feeling perfectly free to slap some sort of political label on me. Maybe it’s because it’s an election year, because the economy is slumping, or because those rebate checks are being sent out by the government, but suddenly it seems that my personal frugal or environmentally friendly choices are big political issues.

Want some examples? Take the cashier at the store last week who, when I pulled out my reusable bags said, “So, you’re a Gore follower, eh? Bet you’re v


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13 Responses to The Politics of Frugality?

  1. I used to be a political junkie but I’m about worn out with politics. Why is it that EVERYTHING is turned into a political issue?

    What would happen if the Federal government took a two year sabbatical?

  2. Caoineag says:

    I do think some areas automatically associate conservation and frugality with politics, mainly because the conservatives don’t tend to be wasteful. However, in my area its not. There are simply too many libertarians, conservatives, moderates, independants and liberals who do these frugal type things.

    I definitely don’t get the association of frugality with politics. Its not like any of the parties other than the green party really push for their members to be frugal and responsible for the environmental impact of their actions…Its really an individual choice.

  3. disneysteve says:

    Caoineag – That’s funny because I think just the opposite. I associate good environmental policies and conservation with the liberals, not the conservatives.

  4. Caoineag says:

    Sorry disneysteve, that was supposed to be “conservative DO tend to be wasteful”.

    Somedays I think I am dyslexic…

  5. Debbie M says:

    Part of my thriftiness and environmental consciousness comes from my days as a Girl Scout. As far as I know, Scouting is considered to be fairly conservative: It’s pro-religion and you’re supposed to respect authority.

    So ha.

  6. Ceejay74 says:

    I feel bad for frugal, environmentally concerned conservatives whose party overlooks their segment. But more are speaking out; Dave Ramsey flat-out said to use the stimulus package to either invest or pay down debt on his show (a ‘liberal’ POV, apparently, though he’s very family-values-conservative in other ways). More Christians, too, are coming on talk shows to explain that just because they’re Christian or even evangelical doesn’t mean they’re anti-environmentalism, or against civil rights for people whose lifestyles don’t agree with their own.

    I too hate how labels are getting slapped on everything–it oversimplifies, and people with a diverse set of beliefs that don’t fit into liberal or conservative must be frustrated because their true complexity isn’t being acknowledged. Hopefully everyone’s getting as fed up as us, and those I mentioned above, so we can start separating some things from bipartisan politics.

  7. lynn says:

    What a shame. I have never received any political comments associated with my frugalness. Most people admire me for my ability to reuse, fix and be as self sufficient as possible.

  8. Maismom says:

    Ha, I learned somthing here. I didn’t know being cheap means liberal LOL

    I am cheap and live in California. I must be very liberal!

  9. ~Dawn says:

    Hopefully this comment area won’t get off topic too far….

    I personally think you have just run into a few very opinionated people in your area.
    In my area, Denver, I don’t recall the last time I heard any condescending comments about frugality.

  10. trex says:

    The reason that they are associated is because the political parties have demonized each side. There is never a middle ground and you aren’t allowed to have some opinions on one side and the other. it’s always either / or. Very unfortunate in my opinion.

  11. Cheapchick says:

    Amen and hallelujah! I have been defending my frugal ways as part of my lifestyle and not part of anyone else’s agenda for a long time. All levels of government are wasteful with both resources and money. Our economy’s growth is contingent on everyone being in debt. I think we are starting to see the beginning of the end.

  12. Alex in Toronto says:

    Sounds to me like your dealing with too many busybodies that have been heavily brainwashed by the ads and political pronouncements of the corporate ruling class that works heavily to indoctrinate citizens into becoming consumers to support their corporate structure and their own viability at the expense of the human beings running the machines.

    I am frugal because I enjoy working less and doing so I have more time to enjoy the things I already have without a need to consume more and making do with more. I DON’T NEED TO BUY CRAP SO THAT THE CORPORATIONS MAY LIVE YET ANOTHER DAY.

  13. Jenni says:

    I so agree with all of you! And being that I grew up in a time when wearing faded jeans with holes in the knees, and Kmart clothes, was not in vogue…I just moved on, taking my mom’s teaching by modeling frugality as a way of life. And I don’t want to have any great, great grandchildren playing in a park on top of a landfill, of stuff my generation threw away. Like there is a park in NY that is suppose to be just like that.
    My mom made quilts to make ends meet, so I tend to save clothes to do just that. Winter quilts aren’t easy to come by either. Anyway, even Chris Rock is talking about being pigeon holed, and not wanting to be, that he is bipartisn. Which is good.I think.

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