Consumerism and Fibromyalgia


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Consumerism and Fibromyalgia

 This blog will deal with Fibromyalgia, but please read on, it will take a while, some background is important.

For most of recorded history, a nation’s economy was based on agricultural. Thomas Jefferson, certainly a brilliant intellect and a founding father of the United States was adamantly opposed to any type of industrialization and felt that real human values were based on working the land. He and another founding father Alexander Hamilton were at odds on this issue and fought about it constantly. Hamilton believed that a national bank was essential so that money could be lent so industrial businesses could be funded in order to grow our economy and to compete with Great Britain, the world power.

Looking back, Hamilton’s views seem obvious, but it’s always easier to view things in hindsight. The fact was that Jefferson’s views and policies shaped his administration (he was the third president), and things really did not start to change until decades later. Additionally most U.S. citizens not only worked the land but felt that this was the way for growth, a way to maintain their moral and religious values and something that had been handed down for thousands of years.

The industrial revolution began to change things, but still, by the time of the Civil War, the majority of the country was still based on agriculture.

After the war, the U.S. was still agriculturally based, though industries were growing. New consumer goods were starting to be produced; however the majority of Americans (In fact the majority of the world’s population) were still poor. They certainly could not afford these items which were really luxuries.

As an interesting side note, Issac Singer, the inventor of the sewing machine was the first to come up with the idea of extending credit, so people could buy his machine. Decades later, Henry ford capitalized on this idea because he realized that he might produce millions of Model-T Fords, but if the consumer could not afford to purchase them, than what was the point.

Still, after the “Great War” (WW1), most were still poor and with the depression of 1929, the majority of Americans and the world struggled just to find food to eat. The depression of 1929 was the longest depression the U.S. ever experienced, and, despite what we might have been taught in school, it lasted until the beginning of WW2. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” plan helped somewhat, but the reality was that it only made a very small dent in the affects of the depression, which had now spread worldwide.

WW2 changed everything, the U.S. geared up to a war economy, jobs paying high wages became plentiful, yet Americans were still concerned with producing commodities for the war effort. When the war ended, the U.S. found itself reaping the benefits by becoming the wealthiest and most affluent nation in the world. This was a first in the history of man. Americans had money to spend on cars, washing machines and all the other consumer goods which made life easier. In fact Las Vegas was a direct result of this new prosperity as people would travel to a city to gamble, knowing full well that they would leave most of their money at the casinos. This type of behavior would have been unthinkable, just a generation before.

Disneyland, in California was the brilliant brainchild of Walt Disney. For the first time, companies were marketing their products directly to the ‘Baby Boomer” children. For the first time, there was a level of affluence, never seen before.

As we became more smitten with new consumer goods and new technologies, we unknowingly began to pay a very steep price. Americans began to lose their sense of purpose and life became much more stressful. A wonderful book which explains this very clearly is: “The Man in the Grey flannel suit”, by Sloan Wilson (later made into a movie with Gregory Peck).

As the decades progressed we became so used to having our cars, wide screen televisions, appliances etc that the money made by these now huge conglomerates reached billions of dollars of profits. Money is a powerful motivator and has the ability to buy our politicians and congress. It also buys our media, tells us who to elect for public office, in essence it does the thinking for us.

Thus, what price have we paid?

  • We drink Polluted water and eat harmful food.
  • We sit in front of the television and rarely exercise, thus we are an overweight nation.
  • We are concerned with our jobs, the fact being that we are replaceable.
  • We are controlled by the media, which reports the truth these days.
  • We are smitten by the Paris Hilton’s and Lindsey Lohan’s of the world.
  • Our attention spans have dropped to 5 or 10 minutes at a time. (A century ago, Henry Clay, John Calhoun and even Abraham Lincoln could keep an audience mesmerized with their oratory skills and messages for three hours at a time, as could Martin Luther King.)
  • We are told that the key to health is to take more drugs (by the way, how do you keep your children away from recreational drugs when every commercial and advertisement is about a new wonderful drug to make your life better – a lie).
  • We do not read and our children leave high school without the ability to write well.
  • Year by year we are actually becoming less and less healthy.

 All of the has caused us to become more and more stressed out, many cannot get through the day with Valium, an anti-depressive or anti-anxiety drug. We all know that stress is one of the leading causes of Fibromyalgia, and if you have Fibromyalgia, stress (physical, chemical and or emotional always makes it worse.

 Is it a wonder that the incidence of Fibromyalgia is growing so fast. I think not!

Dr. Gene Martin, D.C.

Fibromyalgia Relief Center of the Bay Area

520 South El Camino Real, Ste 520

San Mateo Ca. 94402

Phone: 650-558-1010



Skype: dr.gene.martin


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