Jon Carroll expresses something that, judging by the latest retail sales figures, many people understand.
We are in a malaise of materialism. I don't believe the way out is more materialism. The way out is to stop relying on stuff to make us happy. Buy less, America. Get out of debt that way. Lower your stress levels. Capitalism will adjust; that's what it's good at. You know how a pizza and a deck of cards can brighten an evening? Try that.
James Lileks has similar feelings.
This may seem heretical, and we certainly don't wish retailers ill, but perhaps a year off from shouldering massive debt because there's a tree in the living room might give us a chance to breathe deep, take stock, settle debts and enjoy the season for the reasons stated on the greeting cards.