On the way into the office this morning I was listening to Morning Edition on NPR Radio and heard this story about a new book entitled ‘In Cheap We Trust‘ written by Lauren Weber. The book is a history of frugality (AKA “cheapness”) in the United States. If you’re looking for some historical inspiration to spend less and save more this may be your answer.
An interesting note is that Lauren in her research found that during the origins of the United States frugality was a virtue that was encouraged because it helped the US Economy distance itself from relying on Britain. After World War II however consumerism was encouraged because it helped utilize the excess capacity in our economy used to service the war effort. Furthermore, it was around this time that consumer credit was created and became mainstream. Ever since we’ve been playing catch up.
You can click this link to buy the book from Powell’s.