It is not dead yet but from where i am standing it is looking pretty ill.
This downturn is changing the way people think, and for some time to come. It started off with us subtley changing our purchasing habits; one less coffee from Starbucks (or decent coffee shop), no evening paper at the station, having a simpler meal in the evening. It was all very illicit.
Only a year ago we were saying we needed whatever and putting it on the credit card. Now look at us. People are proudly saying we can't afford it. No longer do we have to justify going out for a cheap Pizza by saying the kids love it. Or explain away the old car on the drive with '... it is so reliable so i can't bring myself to sell it, anyway i hardly use it'.
Now of course I know I like to be different, and I make no effort to keep up with the Jones's. But it is still a bit of a relief not to contemplate it. So if this recession puts a dent in consumerism and makes us a bit happier about what we have, rather than unhappy about we haven't got then that will be a big positive. I just wish there wasn't the economic misery to accompany it.
I suspect there is going to be one big opportunity for honest, transparent retailers. But in the meantime watch out Aldi, Lidl, money saving sites, voucher codes, camping sites, car auction, Pizza Express (occasionally), H&M, ebay, freecycle ... here we come. And happy to admit it.
I suspect it is going to be called something like 'virtous thrift'.
Actually the Chorizo from Lidl is very good, you should try it.