Beth Armstrong

Christian wife, mom, & author. Doing life with my eyes fixed on Jesus. I walk, I stumble, I fall. But God is big. And this is what I write about… Thanks for stopping by!

AMERICA IS ONE SCREWED UP PLACE!

The World Is One Screwed Up Place

I read in Time magazine this week that Apple spent $100 million marketing U2’s new Songs of Innocence album. Not only that, but they gave away the album for free for all iTunes customers.

At first mention, that’s pretty impressive, don’t you think? And some half a billion people have taken advantage of the freebie. If you’re a U2 fan, this is like the coolest thing ever.

But wait…

Apple spent how much money?

$100 million. Say that with me. ONE…HUNDRED…MILLION…DOLLARS! And that was just for the marketing campaign. On top of that they paid the band and Universal an undisclosed amount of money for “blanket royalty.”

I like U2. I like the lead singer Bono. I like the humanitarian efforts they’ve spoken out about and been a part of. But when I read that article in Time magazine I about fell out of my chair.

This is messed up. There is nothing “innocent” about this. $100 million to market one album. $100 million to market 11 songs. $100 million for a mere 48 minutes and 11 seconds of listening pleasure.

Do you know what $100 million could do in terms of disease research, assistance for third world countries, poverty, homelessness, improvements in education, cleaning up the environment, public safety enhancements, and every other serious issue in the world today? Well, I don’t know either. But I assure you that kind of money could do some serious damage (in a good way).

But no…we Americans have our priorities all screwed up.

Check this out:
• Actor Charlie Sheen, in the final year of his show Two and a Half Men, made $1.8 million per episode.
• Allen High School in Allen, Texas spent an unprecedented $60 million on its football facility in 2012. (By the way, the team won state titles in 2012 and 2013. Aren’t we happy for them?)
• Actor Leonardo DiCaprio, who tops Hollywood’s highest paid, now commands $77 million per movie he stars in.
• Both Democrats and Republicans spent nearly $1 billion each in the 2012 presidential campaigns.
• It was projected that in 2012, Americans would spend around $20 billion on Christmas decorations. (Yep, decorations…not gifts.)

This is just nuts to me. We live in a country (and perhaps a world) which believes bigger is better. More money spent equals more fun had. The higher the expense, the higher our status. If we don’t spend, spend, spend, we won’t enjoy, enjoy, enjoy. C-R-A-Z-Y!!

We’re on a collision course. When will we collide? And into what will we collide? Beats me. But it’s coming.

This is one screwed up place we live in. And yet we perpetuate it. We continue buying into it. We prolong it by contributing to it.

Slow down, y’all. Less is more. Give it away. Help someone else. Make an impact that actually counts for something else…someone else. Scrap the big ticket items for the gently used stuff. Yeah, maybe you’ll miss out on that grandiose life you fantasize about. But, you just might gain a richer, deeper, more meaningful, more influential one. And who can put a price tag on that?

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