13 February 2011

Raedwald - blowing his own

Loved this bit from the boat-dweller's latest post "Beyond the Big Society".
I need to guard against a certain smugness, for I'm a consummate prosumer [producer-consumer]. I have tools and knowledge and physical ability. I can restore battered sad old furniture to add 1,000% to its value at a cost of less than 100% of its purchase price as long as I don't cost my labour. If I want to use an absolutely specific type of bath salt I can make it. I can transform the cheapest and least popular cuts of meat into exquisite meals. I can cook, sew, decorate, grow, join, plumb, tile, brew, bake, wire, craft and create, make all my own picture frames, fix engines and computers and anything I can't make or adapt I can procure on the best possible terms because I can use the internet effectively. It may not be worth my while - yet - to make my own pins, but the benefits of the Division of Labour established by Adam Smith at the start of the industrial nation is now everywhere in reverse. And Toffler is right in one thing; no government, no State, can capture by economic statistics the 'value added' by prosuming. It's a choice, of course; a trade-off between time spent and value gained. And its impact is grossly underestimated.
Wow. He'd make someone a great wife, don't'cha think?

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